Tuesday, 30 August 2011
CNN censor NATO spokesman who details SAS operations in Libya - the link below has been removed ;
Foreign forces in Libya helping rebel forces advance
Washington (CNN) -- Special forces troops from Britain, France, Jordan and Qatar on the ground in Libya have stepped up operations in Tripoli and other cities in recent days to help rebel forces as they conducted their final advance on the Gadhafi regime, a NATO official confirmed to CNN Wednesday.
British forces, in particular, have assisted rebel units by "helping them get better organized to conduct operations," the official said. Some of these forces from all the countries have traveled with rebel units from towns across Libya as they advanced on Tripoli.
The official declined to be identified due to the sensitive nature of the intelligence information.
Overall, the special forces have helped rebels "improve their tactics," the official said.
The forces have also provided targeting information to warplanes conducting airstrikes and conducting reconnaissance missions in Tripoli, he said. This has been especially critical in recent days in the capital, as fighters from both sides have mixed together in close range. The forces have also assisted rebels in communications as they conducted the assault on the capital.
Qatari and French forces also have provided some armaments, the official said.
Recent flash mob violence has alerted Americans to a troubling wave of sadistic racial mayhem. A notable outbreak occurred in Denver in 2009, setting a pattern of delay, denial, and silence. Now that same scourge has returned to Denver, among many other places.
In 2009, a four month wave of mayhem broke out in Denver. There were at least 26 violent robberies committed by two black gangs. The victims were -- without exception -- whites and Hispanics. When the dust settled from that initial spate of violence, victims were left with injuries ranging from a skull fracture to broken noses and shattered eye sockets. The local Denver ABC news affiliate summarized the crime spree:
Black gangs roaming downtown Denver often vented their hatred for white victims before assaulting and robbing them during a four-month crime wave, according to interviews and court records obtained by 7NEWS.
That is not the language of a conservative commentator; it's simply a mainstream local news report from an American city that has witnessed widespread racial violence.
The first-hand accounts and surveillance videos of the 2009 attacks are shocking. These weren't sucker punches or fair fights -- the attackers swing madly and rapidly with a viciousness that can only come from blind cruelty. The victims, who can be seen in interviews, were kind-looking, ordinary people. The victims were mostly either gay or straight couples. They didn't provoke the attacks in any conceivable way. The attackers sometimes fractured skulls, or broke eye sockets, and left one victim in a coma. There were a total of 26 attacks from July 17 to Nov. 17.
An incredible 38 people were arrested in connection with this campaign of racist violence. Thirty were ultimately charged, all black. Has this number of arrests been made against any violent white supremacist or right wing organization in the last 50 years?
The story first came to light in 2009 when a source inside the Denver police department said that the department was "keeping the public in the dark" about the attacks. Court documents show that the police did indeed have knowledge of a pattern of racial attacks, but remained silent for 27 days. One victim complained that, had the police informed the public sooner, he could have protected himself. The same group responsible for that violence is suspected in the murder of Andrew Graham, a young graduate student who was senselessly shot in 2010.
Late last month, Denver saw a possible return to violence, as couples leaving restaurants were being attacked by a group of black men with baseball bats. The Denver Police have renewed warnings of those attacks.
The brutality in Denver is disturbingly similar to violence occurring elsewhere, nationwide. In the last few months alone, a young white lady named Shaina Perry was taunted and beaten in Milwaukee. A young white man named Carter Strange had his skull fractured by a mob in South Carolina. Dawid Strucinski was beaten into a coma by a mob in Bayonne. Anna Taylor, Emily Guendelsberger, and Thomas Fitzgerald were beaten and kicked to the ground in separate Philadelphia flash mobs. Every weekend in July, mobs have attacked in Greensboro, NC. In a mostly-white suburb of Cleveland, witnesses reported large groups of "teens" walking through the streets, "shouting profanities and racial epithets," and one man was viciously beaten while leaving a restaurant with his wife and friends. In all of those cases, the victims were white and the attackers were black.
Then there are the ominous stories that no one has ever heard about. For instance, a mob of 150 "young people" descended on a small, predominantly white NJ town named Winfield Township during a firefighter's carnival. Perhaps the townspeople are merely lucky that there wasn't violence. Isn't the racial mob mentality scary enough that we shouldn't have to wait for violence before we take it seriously?
It cannot be emphasized enough that these attacks often occur in suburban areas where the black groups have to leave their own neighborhoods and purposefully travel to areas that are predominantly non-black, to attack non-black victims. For instance, in one of the many flash mob attacks in Chicago, Trovulus Pickett, 17, is part of a group that attacked and robbed several victims, including a 68-year-old doctor. The attacks occurred in the North side, which is 15 miles away from Pickett's home. This indicates a serious level of planning and potential racial targeting. If these were just run-of-the mill robberies, it wouldn't be too surprising. But the social problem we're looking at is large groups, sometimes numbering in the hundreds, sometimes armed, engaging in racially-focused violent crimes.
There is quite simply no way for a politically correct society to grasp these events, much less effectively deal with them. Liberals have reached the depths of self-deception and self-censorship in response. The Washington Post, New York Times, and the Chicago Tribune, have all openly stated that they will refuse to report on the racial facts of these violent crimes. The Los Angeles Times explains that they don't want to "unfairly stigmatize racial groups." They prefer the soft bigotry of low expectations instead.
These flash mobs have turned the comfortable narrative of racism on its head. Politicians, the media, academics, and the legal community do not have the capacity to face the issue. The reigning dogma of white racism is too deeply entrenched. There is a small grievance industry built around condemning white racism and intolerance, real or imagined. Indeed, the welfare state itself is in large part based on the assumption that whites need to give more to achieve racial equality, as reflected in President Obama's lament that the civil rights movement didn't focus on economic redistribution. Legal treatises complain that the racist white power structure grows into the bitter fruit of anti-minority racist violence. For instance, the work of Mari Matsuda and Richard Delgado is featured in countless undergraduate courses, and is ubiquitous in graduate and law school courses. They argue that hate speech is a severe social problem and that such speech, along with other tools of racism, keeps minorities in an inferior position (1). While academics dwell on hateful speech, the actual violence continues. We all pay the price, as racial guilt is used to extort tax money for the welfare state, which fosters the mobs. The PC status quo will not acknowledge the fact that the worst form of racism today is black mob violence.
John Bennett (MA, University of Chicago, MAPSS '07) is a veteran, writer, and law student at Emory University living in Atlanta, GA.
1. Matsuda, Mari J., Public Response to Racist Speech: Considering the Victim's Story, 87 Michigan Law Review. 2320, 2362, note 10 (1989); Richard Delgado, Words That Wound: A Tort Action For Racial Insults, Epithets, and Name-Calling, 17 Harv. Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. 133 (1982).
First - let's not labor under any delusions. Obama, Cameron, and Sarkozy are heads of state in name only. It is the depravity and megalomania amongst the banks, corporations, and the institutions they have contrived, that are responsible for the most egregious betrayal in Western history. For 10 years the West's leadership have stirred up hatred and fear amongst their populations to justify a lengthy and very costly global war that has sent US, British, Canadian, German, French, and many other troops, around the world, into dangerous adversity, and ultimately to their graves to fight "the forces of terror."
Now, almost as if savoring the irony, the New York Times, on behalf of the corporate-financier oligarchs that presume dominion over the Western world, fully admit that Al Qaeda terrorists, men who literally killed US troops in both Iraq and Afghanistan are now in Libya and are the benefactors of billions of dollars in Western aid, diplomatic recognition, training, weapons, the lending of intelligence assets, the full unwavering support of the West's "media," NATO-member air support, and even graced with Western special forces fighting side-by-side with them on the ground. This timely confession is also in response in part to revelations that the Libyan rebel commander now filling the streets of Tripoli with indescribable horror is a hardcore Al Qaeda leader, reported first in the Telegraph months ago, and again this week on RT and covered in depth by respected geopolitical analyst Dr. Webster Tarpley.
While naive Americans are brimming with pride as the military machine bankrupting them into destitution rolls over another minute nation an ocean away, they seem ignorant or unable to wrap their minds around how egregiously they've been betrayed. After 10 years, thousands of dead troops, tens of thousands broken mentally or physically, an economy diverted to war, occupation, and "nation building" overseas while America's infrastructure rots beneath her, the corporate-financier oligarchs have decided to betray and infinitely humiliate America's armed forces in the worst manner imaginable - have them provide air cover, intel, and special operational support for blood-thirsty mercenaries that hunted and killed their brothers in arms for the past decade.
Entire families have been destroyed, communities devastated by the loss of their brothers and sisters, friends, mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, fighting what they thought was a war for the very survival of their way of life. Today, in Libya, with Al Qaeda literally being handed a nation-state by these corporate-financiers through their political and military proxies, the leaders we have elected and the corporations we have helped grow to monstrous proportions now squat upon the graves our nation's fallen and defile their memories and the ideals they believed they were giving their lives for in an unforgivable way.
And while it will be claimed by many that this is "Obama's War," it most certainly is not. The very cadre of Neo-Conservatives that engineered the last decade of debilitating global war at the expense of American blood and treasure have been quietly cheerleading the expansion of NATO's intervention in Libya. This can be seen in unequivocal terms in a letter written to US House Republicans imploring them to end their resistance to the current, unconstitutional war, and instead discard the UNSC resolution and give even more support for the terrorists seizing Libya on their behalf. Paul Wolfowitz, Elliott Abrams, Max Boot, Frederick Kagan, Karl Rove, Ellen Bork, Robert Kagan, Liz Cheney, William Kristol, Dan Senor, and James Woolsey are just some of the names of individuals that affixed their signatures at the bottom of this letter. Quite clearly, this is not exclusively "Obama's War," rather one engineered and promoted by the Fortune 500 banks and corporations that include both Obama and America's most notorious Neo-Conservatives as loyal servants.
If ever there was a time for our military, not just the rank and file, but the officers that lead them and whose hands young fighting men put their lives into, to recall their oath given to the US Constitution and their duty to protect and defend their nation and their people, it would be now. If ever there was a time to recognize our self-proclaimed leadership, crutching their legitimacy along with the facade of "democracy" as the self-serving egregious traitors they are - the time is now. And when the people's faith in their government falters, let us be vigilant against pretend reformers. Let us make sure military men stepping forward to rectify our nation's slide into the surreal aren't corporate-fascist serving Council on Foreign Relations members like General Stanley McChrystal or General David Petraeus, both of whom are guilty of helping to foist this facade upon the American people at tragic costs to us all.
For the average man or woman in America, now would be a good time to start putting these corporations and banks out of business. Boycott and replace them systematically, day to day, little by little. America has misplaced their faith in these world-spanning corporations and have traded their independence and self-reliance in for the illusion of convenience. It is time to take that independence back. It is also time to vote each and every incumbent out of office that has served these agendas and promoted this war, now exposed as an absolute hoax. Those like John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Joe Lieberman come particularly to mind. Finally, it is time to start getting organized as a community. Reach out to your neighbors, start a marksmanship club, help each other with starting a garden, and start standing up for one another when this corrupt, parasitic system comes searching for sustenance to continue fueling its dark deeds. By exercising each and every one of your Constitutional rights, collectively as a community and on a daily basis, you ensure their vigor in standing up against tyranny of all kinds.
Now is the time, this far and no further - if not for ourselves, for the thousands of Americans that shed their lives in the belief they did so for a higher cause and whose memories are now being defiled by the despicable actions of Wall Street and London, and the degenerate army of sycophants that serve them, from Europe to North America, from Israel's leadership, to the corporate oligarchs that manipulate the people of Australia. This evil empire has reached an intolerable height.
For a list of the corporate-financier interests that truly run Western society please see, "Naming Names." For more information on self-sufficiency please see, "The Globalsits' Worst Nightmare." To learn more about why and how to boycott the corporate-
Sunday, 28 August 2011
Here we proceed from the fact that the mentality, traditions and way of life of the people cannot be changed overnight. Must they be changed at all? It cannot be possible to throw unprepared people into the market abyss—Alexander Lukashenko, 2002
We have once again felt ourselves a part of the sacred whole, which name is the people of Belarus. We have made sure: A healthy nation is being formed in our country. Healthy not only physically, but also spiritually–(Alexander Lukashenko, 2009)
Alexander Lukashenko is probably the most maligned politician in the world today. The reasons for this are not difficult to discover. Contrary to the prattle about his alleged “tyranny,” Lukashenko is under attack due to his success. Truth be told, of course, Belarus has more important opposition parties than the U.S., and also has a press that is part state-owned, but with many legal opposition newspapers in existence, partly funded by the United States and the EU. Nevertheless, his success is not based on this.
Lukashenko is victimized because he has proven the economic success of the social nationalist model, or what he calls the “social market” model as opposed to libertarian capitalism. There is no doubt this model has strong national associations, is generally pro-Russian and looks to the East, rather than the terminally ill West, for its economic future. Belarus was one of the most essential components of the old Soviet Union. She is very well educated, specializing in electronics and fuel transport and refining. This makes her highly strategic and a threat to the failing West.
Belarus is terra incognita to most Americans, even most Americans who fancy themselves “experts” in international affairs. Therefore, it strains the imagination as to why the Western elite, including former presidential candidate John McCain, have made attacking Belarus a major aspect of their political life. (Here’s The Weekly Standard gushing over an Ayn Rand-style economist they want to be president of Belarus; here Michele Brand, writing in Counterpunch, exposes the Western onslaught on Belarus.) The country is the size of Kansas with little diaspora in America. It seems that the only rational reason for the constant attacks on this tiny country is that it serves as a means of attacking Russia—a neocon bogeyman if ever there was one. Russian education, gas and oil technology, scientific establishments and natural resources can be the only rational reason for this constant drumbeat of rhetorical attacks. The fact that Russia and Belarus have seen substantial economic growth and increases in financial capitalization while the West seems forever mired in debt and social decay is something that embarrasses American “free market conservatives.”
Lukashenko as depicted by opponents
Recently, McCain seemed to prove the economic subtext of his often ranting condemnations of Belarus in a recent trip to the Baltics: “We appreciate the step forward the EU took in adopting the visa ban, but, we think, it should go further to economic sanctions on energy companies within Belarus that fuel money for that regime to oppress its own people.” In fact, when any lengthy discussion of Belarus comes up in McCain’s political life, energy resources are usually lurking in the background. McCain has received tens of millions from oil firms in America, Israel, the Netherlands and Britain, and serve as at least the financial reason for this strange obsession.
Elected in 1994, Lukashenko has popularity ratings that Western politicians would—and do—envy. Since 1994, Belarus’ spectacular economic growth, diversification, trade surplus and low unemployment have maintained the president’s popularity rating at very high levels, generally hovering around the 60th and 70th percentile. Recently, the London-based TNS Global Research Organization, polled 10,000 Belorussians as to their President. This shows Lukashenko with a solid popularity rating of nearly 75 percent as of the Fall of 2010. Therefore, the accusations of his rigging elections are nonsense. Even more, his opposition is highly divided, ineffectual and deeply doubtful as to their purpose.
What is the basis of his popularity? It’s his sense that Belarus needs an economic policy that serves its national interests. As the Russian and Ukrainian economies were devastated and taken out of the country by the oligarchs in the early 1990s with State Department, IMF and Harvard University backing, Belarus put its privatization program on hold. The IMF was asked to leave the country, and, from that point on, Lukashenko was called “the last dictator in Europe.” It is no accident that the bulk of his U.S opposition comes from Harvard University, especially from the law school, including Yarik Kryovi, who at one point worked for the Soros-owned “Radio Liberty” and served as a lawyer for the World Bank. His CV lists his work for “private clients” he will not disclose. The power elite wants Lukashenko’s head as he continues to become popular among the hoi-polloi of the country.
Lukashenko’s record is stellar. According to World Bank statistics updated in 2010, Belarus avoided the recession/depression that has the West in its grip. Belarussian banks, mostly owned by the state, outperformed all European banks in 2009. State-owned banks increased their capitalization by almost 20 percent as the Western taxpayer was forced to bail out the same banks that have condemned the Minsk government.
From 2001–2008, the Belorussian economic growth average was almost 9 percent, which is roughly equal to that of China. As Western economies were contracting in 2010, the Belarussian economy grew about 6 percent, with a 10 percent increase in agricultural production and a 27 percent increase in exports. Real income, that is, inflation and cost of living adjusted income, grew by about 7 percent in 2010.
According to the IMF, Belarussian unemployment was 0 percent in 1991, but rose to 4 percent in 1996 as Russian and Ukraine were liquidated from the inside. Under Lukashenko’s firm leadership in stopping privatization and arresting the bandits who tried to liquidate the economy, the IMF reports that unemployment went down to 1 percent in 2008. The United Nations says the same.
Without exaggeration, these figures, all from hostile sources, show that Lukashenko’s leadership was and is a success. This is the main source of his popularity and the reason he is elected and re-elected on a regular basis. But the important question is what serves as the basis for Lukashenko’s leadership? The answer is the “social nationalist and social market” idea. The official Belarussian doctrine on Development says this:
Belarus has chosen to follow the path of evolutionary development and rejected the prescriptions of the International Monetary Fund like shock therapy and landslide privatization. Over many years of creative work, the Belorussian model of socio-economic development has been put in place – the model which combines the advantages of market economy and efficient social protection. Our development concept has been elaborated in keeping with the historical continuity and people’s traditions. The Belorussian model aims to improve the existing economic basis rather than to make a revolutionary break of the former system. The Belorussian economic model contains the elements of continuity in the functioning of state institutions everywhere it has proved effective.
In other words, Lukashenko’s view here is that of a “third way” between socialism and capitalism. It takes what is good from the free market but does not dispense with a strong state that makes certain economic growth is not just for the well-connected few. What Marxism and capitalism have in common is their results: total inequality in power, wealth and access. Whether it be the party or the oligarchical class, these modern, materialist systems serve as little more than massive transfers of wealth from the working man to the oligarch. Whether these oligarchs claim to be working “for the people,” “the party,” or “American freedom” makes no difference. The result is precisely the same.
In a meeting with his Cabinet and other significant government and military figures in March of 2002, Lukashenko summarized his political views. It is worth quoting at length:
What are the distinctive features of our model?
First. Strong and efficient state authority. To safeguard the citizens’ safety, to ensure social justice and public order, not to allow expansion of crime and corruption is indeed the role of the state. Only the strong authority managed to drag the Belorussian economy out of the economic abyss.
Our nearest neighbors have in the long run realized that, if there is no strong hierarchy of authority, liberalization of the economy in the transition period brings about social instability and legal unheard-of disorder. It results in public unruliness!
As for us, we had a clear idea at the very beginning that premature expansion of market relations would not allow us to radically resolve any of the existing pressing problems. On the contrary, new problems would emerge, generated by the specificity of the market relations. Public accord would break, resulting in conflicts and instability. And it is political stability that is one of the main conditions for gradual integration into the world economy. I would refer to it as one of the distinctive features or consequences (whatever you call it) of the model of development of the Belorussian economy.
Here we proceed from the fact that mentality, traditions and way of life of the people cannot be changed overnight. Must they be changed at all? It cannot be possible to throw unprepared people into the market abyss. One needs decades to work out a new world outlook.
The second distinctive feature of our model is in the fact that the private sector can and has to be developing alongside the public sector. But not to the detriment of national interests. I emphasize: if you are a private owner, it does not imply you should do whatever you like. National interests, the state, must be the main priority and the main goal for the work of every citizen, enterprise or entrepreneur whose production is based on private ownership.
This is not campaign rhetoric, but serves as the basis of government policy since the mid 1990s. The state must be strong, honest, and competently led, because the alternative is oligarchical control and the substitution of private for public law. The state is taking a protective stance towards its people—a novel idea in an age with Western elites have systematically undermined the interests of their own people, particularly with regard to immigration. As the Soviet Union fell to pieces, only the state remained to safeguard some minimal concept of the public good. Russian under Yeltsin and IMF control was incapable of this, proving the incompetence and corruption of such multinational agencies. Only in Belarus was this economic rape stopped.
The ignorance of the “free marketeers” is shown in their views on Russia. They assumed around 1991 that if the government just “got out of way” of the “invisible hand,” all would be well. What they did not count on was the radical inequalities of access to power. Those with good government jobs, black market fortunes or other forms of “gray” access to power were precisely those who were in the best position to take power. Under the weak leadership of Yeltsin and the IMF, the Russian economy almost disappeared. The work of decades of the Russian people was liquidated and sent to America, Cyprus, Israel and Latin America in the name of “freedom” and “democracy.”
The “free market” is a slogan—a mode of legitimizing the already extant distribution of power. There was never a time of the pure “free market,” but rather, it existed only because of the abilities of those capable of taking over during the decay of Ancien Régime-Europe in the Enlightenment. The old social protections of the medieval peasant and townsmen were thrown by the wayside in this oligarchic rush for progress, money and power. The same thing happened in Russia and Ukraine in the early 1990s. Weak leadership meant the liquidation of the state, economy and legal system. In his 2009 New Year’s Address, Lukashenko added more detail to his basic approach:
We were urgently recommended to place the economy under the command of the rules of the world exchange market. But we decided not to rely on the volatile exchange trends.
We are not the ones who have provoked today’s crisis which is sending shockwaves all around the world. On the contrary, the crisis has come as a result of something that we have been always been determined to struggle against.
The central words are this: “I emphasize: if you are a private owner, it does not imply you should do whatever you like.” It is the nation that comes first. The nation here is the bilingual tradition of Belarus between Russian and Belarussian. It is Slavic Orthodox and agrarian. It is based on a fundamentally egalitarian distribution of land and resources in the name of ethnic and national solidarity. Economic progress means nothing if it benefits only the few. Nationalism implies solidarity, especially in a small and vulnerable country under constant attack.
In his famous essay “On the Historical Choice of Belarus,” the more “ethnic” aspects of his political theory are laid out. In general, the purpose of the state, in this realm, is to provide a safe home for the specific traditions of the peoples living within it to flourish. This includes the agrarian culture, urban life, the specific ethnic traditions of Poles, Belorussians and Russians living within Belarus. The point is not so much that the state is representative of a specific national tradition, but rather that preserving the national traditions of the peoples living within her borders becomes paramount. There are no real ethnically pure states, and therefore, the best the state can do is protect the ethical traditions and regional variations that do exist.
In his April, 2002 State of the Union Address, Lukashenko stated:
Rights and freedoms must be in harmony with responsibilities for violations of the state-established regulations. Development of the Belorussian economy implies not only the encouragement of small and medium-sized enterprise (although, as I said, these must and will be encouraged). Historically, the Belorussian industry means large-scale enterprises. There is only one promising way: updating and re-equipping existing major industries so as to produce competitive new generations of products. Just look, the entire world merges into transnational corporations. Why then should we crush, divide and destroy our gigantic highly cooperated enterprises? They must be relied upon. In pursuing its policy, the state will, first of all, be relying upon these giants, which have been maintaining us and feeding us. Immense investments are needed for this, which cannot be attracted without changing the form of ownership. (Translation mine, available only in Russian)
His doctrine of “social right” is that there are no abstract rights. They are contextualized into a way of life—that of the national collective. You have no right, for example, to do something that harms the economic life of the country. Rights in the West are mindless slogan words without meaning. They exist to end an argument without making your case: “I have a right to do this” the American businessman might say as he outsources is jobs to China. Justifying such an alleged “right” is another matter, but the very act of claiming a “right” to do something shuts down all argument. Lukashenko asks, not what are your “rights,” but what is the “good” thing to do. No one has a “right” to undermine the public good, especially for private profit. The entire point of law is to protect labor from the arrogance and currency-fetishism of the ruling class. Only strong leadership able to go over the heads of the powerful can fashion such laws. Lukashenko and Belarus have reaped the benefits of such a policy.
In confronting the onslaught of the West in his 2006 State of the Union Address, Lukashenko spared no feelings:
The country’s development policy line worked out by us has proved right. High rates of economic growth, which our economy has been already demonstrating for more than 10 years, provide good evidence thereof. Just compare: our annual GDP growth over the past five–year planning period was 7.5 percent as against 3.5 percent of the world average.
Western theoreticians fail to explain the reasons of such a success. They do not fit in with their “democratic” scheme.
The reasons, however, are simple. We have not embezzled the people’s wealth, we have not got into burdensome debts. Relying on life itself, we have worked out our own model of development based on well–balanced and thought–out reforms. Without any sweeping privatization and shock therapy — preserving everything that was best in our economy and in our traditions. At the same time we have been learning to work under new, market conditions, taking advantage of the experience elsewhere in the world and taking into account the modern trends of the world economy. Strong state power, strong social policy and reliance on the people— that is what explains the secret behind our success. (Translation mine, available only in Russian)
Liberal democracy in the West has meant, in real terms, the constant transfer of the labor of the American worker to the pockets of the banks and the multinational firms. When the banks failed, they demanded trillions from these same taxpayers to continue to lend. Much of this money just went overseas and into the pockets of the major players like Goldman-Sachs. In the 2008 elections, Goldman spent a huge amount of money on both candidates. Whoever won in 2008 saw Goldman as their primary beneficiary. This is liberal democracy, and this is a large part of the American failure.
In sending the Western oligarchs packing, Lukashenko did two things: first, he assured his own popularity and political success while, second, earning the hatred of the Western establishment. It should be noted that at the 2010 Bildeberg meeting, not a single Russian or Belarussian was invited. The same was true in 2011. (Jim Tucker, personal communication)
In his “Historical Choice” essay, Lukashenko condemns the form of Free Trade practiced by the EU. For him, the playing field is already slanted to the elites in the powerful states of the union. In the EU—he is writing in 2003—states like Greece or Portugal could not compete with the advanced states of Germany or England. The benefits that Greece takes from the EU exist solely in the interests of the ruling classes, while the people suffer. German or French goods flood the Greek market, putting Greek artisans out of business.
When Lukashenko uses the word “independence,” it is meant not just as a campaign slogan, but as a moral reality. Independence means economic independence—the global market will be entered on our terms, not the banks’. Independence means that, while Belarus will always be an Orthodox and Slavic people, that does not mean issues of justice will be ignored in Minsk’s choice of allies. There is to be no dependence on anyone. Dependence on other states for energy, markets or industrial components automatically means that the people themselves have lost all power over their economic lives, and their well-being in that sense is solely in the hands of others, foreigners. For Belarus, the worker will be involved in all levels of economic decision making and will have some control over the economic life he enjoys.
When commemorating the 60th anniversary of the massacre of Katyn in March of 2003, Lukashenko said this:
We still have to analyze and learn lessons from current events. But already today it is clear: the system of the world order has been destroyed due to the war in Iraq, the role of the UN Security Council has been brought to zero, international law has been trampled underfoot, the principle of no external imposition to any people of the system of governance and power has been violated. The Belorussian people condemn the aggression by the United States of America. So do most of the peoples and states of the world, including even the closest allies of the USA.
Lukashenko has consistently promoted that United Nations as a means of controlling American imperial power. Furthermore, he appreciates that the UN would include the views of poorer states throughout the world in foreign policy decisions. Lukashenko has rejected any form of global government, but still sees a constructive role for some international organizations in protecting the weak against the strong. He stresses the “principle of no external imposition” of state forms or ideology on a people. Lukashenko condemns America’s ideological crusade for oil, Israel and the oligarchic doctrine of “liberal democracy.”
Lukashenko sees ideological crusades not as moral interventions or manifestations of dis-interested humanitarianism, but cloaks for raw oligarchical power. In Lukashenko’s ethical theory, oligarchy is the worst form of government. Historically, from Novgorod to Venice to New York, oligarchies have used liberalism, “republicanism,” and media manipulation as a cloak for their own power. In a similar vein, Lukashenko states in his 2006 address to the heads of Belarus’ diplomatic corps:
If we are talking about respect for states, their independence and sovereignty, their rights to choose their futures, about the right of the people to elect its leaders, about respect of the right to life and free labor, worthy wages and salaries, the right to equality of all before the law, the right to freedom of opinion and expression in conformity to the law, without detriment to the rights of other people — these are our values. The U.S. and the EU do not have a monopoly on these rights. Our nation had paid a far greater price for these values than the USA and the EU.
As always, Lukashenko shows the distinction between a politician and a statesman. It is concepts like these that have helped this man become one of the most popular politicians in the Slavic world. Again, the Belarussian President holds abstract “rights” as little more than cloaks for raw oligarchic power. The U.S. invades the rights and sovereignty of other states not to protect people from “human rights abuses,” but rather, to serve the interests of its overgrown and excessively wealthy private sector.
While the Western press continually repeats the inaccurate statement that Belarussian media is “state-owned,” they themselves hew to a single line on most important topics, especially on foreign policy. Needless to say, the oligarchic control over Western media is too well known to deserve further comment.
The very fact that the President of Belarus holds that Western hostility is due to “external influences” strongly suggests that he is referring to financial and ethnic sources of power. This is important, since it goes to the heart of his social ideas. The state, at its best, is a source of moral authority and the public good. When the state is captured by alien elements, it then becomes merely a coercive agency of oligarchy. Therefore, in a rather roundabout way, Lukashenko is making the accusation that Western states are not public, but rather private, entities. If they were to become public entities once more, they would then drop their hostility to the Belarussian political system.
In grasping the political ideas of Lukashenko outside of its media distortion, many themes come up repeatedly:
1.A nationalism that stresses the economic security of his small country. Ethnicity and religion are important because they serve as a basis of solidarity for the basic economic concerns of the people.
2.The continual attack on “abstractions,” such as “human rights” or “economic freedom.” Since abstractions can mean whatever the speaker wants them to mean, they are used as covers for the exercise of colonialism and economic imperialism.
3.In cases of emergency, such as the meltdown of the Russian and Ukrainian economies in the early 1990s, the state has the responsibility to take the lead in protecting the population from oligarchy and foreign attack. This is especially the case in smaller and hence more vulnerable states.
4.No state can function when it is penetrated by oligarchy and the “free market” ideology. These care only about private goods, while the state serves the public good only. The state serves the public good when it uses its authority against concentrated economic power and self-interested foreign interference.
5.The state understands its role only in light of the historical experience and ethnic tradition(s) of its people.
6.Economics exists for the whole people. If it does not serve the public good, then it has no moral legitimacy, regardless of all “rights” talk to the contrary.
7.The state has a legitimate economic role in both media and economics. It has no right to rule these in a totalitarian fashion, but it, especially in times of stress, has a right to have its voice heard. A strong state sector is not the same as “tyranny.”
8.There is no real moral distinction between state control and oligarchic control.
9.The media is one of the world’s most powerful weapons. Hence, it should be regulated like any other weapon. Media elites are often oligarchical and centralized, and use their empires for the sake of controlling others. A free media, therefore, is a mixed one, with different points of view being permitted. This is far more the case in Russia and Belarus than it is in the US.
10.No government has the right to manipulate the internal affairs of another. This is especially the case when such interference is blatantly self-interested and serves the interest only of an economic oligarchy.
11.“The people” is another of these abstractions that mean nothing. To use the phrase “the people,” the speaker must be referring to a specific people, a specific language and historical tradition, as well as a specific social context.
12.International justice, if it means anything, refers to a state of affairs where the world’s ethnic groups, races and religions are given the independence to develop according to their own historical tradition, not the ideological slogans of the current hegemon.
13.International justice also implies objective and politically neutral international bodies that can mediate disputes outside of an ideological agenda. This is far from “world government,” but refers only to certain arrangements that can solve international problems in a neutral manner before they lead to mass warfare. This is especially sensitive in smaller states that have lost huge percentages of their population in wars. The fact that Belarus lost almost 30 percent of its population in the Second World War makes the average Belarussian a bit testy about the possibility of another shooting war on its soil.
Matt Johnson is a professional writer a former university professor specializing in Russian and Ukrainian history and theology. His doctoral dissertation at the University of Nebraska was on the nature of scientific methods as a conduit for political revolution. He has taught both at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Mount St. Mary’s University. He is the author of 5 books, the most recent is Russian Populist: The Political Theory of Vladimir Putin published by the Barnes Review Press. He hosts a radio program, The Orthodox Nationalist, on the Reason Radio Network.
There were those who scoffed at my contention that Abercrombie and Fitch, the edgy retailer, was paving the way for mainstream pedophilia when it began marketing breast enhancing bikinis to girls as young as eight.
There were those who railed against my contention that the French edition of Vogue was kindling pedophilia and embracing it with its racy depictions of 10-year-old Thylane Lena-Rose Loubry-Blondeau in heavy makeup, a plunging neckline and stiletto heels.
There were others who suggested that I had a problem with breastfeeding, in general, when I took issue with The Breast Milk Baby, which encourages little girls to wear a vest that has flowers in place of larger nipples and nurse the doll.
But, now, there should be no doubt that our culture is poised to begin embracing pedophilia as a lifestyle choice, just like homosexuality. A group of psychiatrists and other mental health professionals called B4U-Act, which has representatives from Harvard and Johns Hopkins, gathered recently in Baltimore to organize their push to change the negative perception of pedophiles and encourage them to get help in a nonjudgmental environment.
While B4U-Act is not representative of mainstream psychiatry, and while the American Psychiatric Association (APA) did not participate in the group’s meeting, psychiatry has a history of caving into cultural pressure to stop defining controversial illnesses as pathological. You won’t even find ego-dystonic homosexuality—meaning, homosexual impulses that cause an individual to feel distressed and which that individual does not want to give into—in the DSM, anymore.
Some of the goals of B4U-Act are worthwhile. Encouraging pedophiles to seek psychiatric treatment to resist their pathological urges is a good thing, not a bad thing. I wish every pedophile would get help before ever hurting a child. And the group is absolutely right in asserting that some pedophiles—perhaps the vast majority of pedophiles—never actually do commit a crime. They live with their erotic desires for children without ever acting on them.
Dr. Fred Berlin, a Johns Hopkins psychiatrist, bonafide genius, and truly decent person, is quoted on the website of B4U-Act. His treatment protocols for sexual offenders and others with such impulses do indeed vastly reduce the likelihood that such individuals will hurt children, and his efforts are to be lauded.
But what the members of B4U-Act fail to realize is that there are some impulses worth repressing from consciousness—like the impulse to rape children. There are even thoughts worth repressing—like fantasies of having sex with children. When a society stigmatizes certain actions and thoughts—thereby driving them out of mainstream consciousness and into the shadows—that isn’t always a bad thing.
The group also fails to recognize that there are consequences to removing all moral judgment from a profession. Psychiatry, for example, has become hostile to suggesting that alcoholics are actually choosing their drug over their families and jobs and other responsibilities—and that making that choice is morally reprehensible. Why isn’t it all right for psychiatrists to take a hard line against pedophilia and see it for what it is: a desire to violate and injure children that is both pathological and morally reprehensible and to be resisted by every means possible?
I’ve told more than one of my patients that his real diagnosis, given his behavior in embracing drugs, instead of his family or employment, shouldn’t be alcohol dependence or heroin dependence, but “scumbag.” And I then have quickly added that they can do better than that—that they must choose to do better than that, because, deep inside, they are good and decent and lovable. I tell them they can find the courage to do the right thing, instead of the wrong thing. Yes, I sometimes use the word “wrong.” I judge them. It helps.
I would not hesitate to tell a pedophile that his desires are to injure and torture a child—that they are morally wrong—and that it is his responsibility to ferret out the source of those destructive desires and extinguish them. I wouldn’t for a moment commiserate about how hard it is to live in a society that criminalizes the acts he is moved to commit.
Suggesting to pedophiles that their thoughts and impulses are “understandable” and that they won’t be judged by the members of B4U-Act is the kind of message that encourages them to push harder to change what they think of as unfair laws that keep them from their base desires.
I hate to say I told you so, but . . . well . . . OK, I won’t.
Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2011/08/25/paving-way-for-condoning-child-rape/#ixzz1WJSN9LwN
Saturday, 27 August 2011
Here is the proof of rebel atrocities in Libya ;
watch only if you can stomach it. This is the lynchings of blacks and beheadings of unarmed prisoners by the rebels.
DO NOT WATCH IF YOU ARE DISTURBED BY SUCH SCENES ;
Since March the rebels have been targeting blacks in Libya.
The media knew this - and still they lie.
Libyan rebels accused of targeting blacks
Rights groups say African migrant workers and black Libyans face beatings and detention by rebel fighters who suspect them of being mercenaries hired by Moammar Kadafi to put down the rebellion.
March 04, 2011|
By David Zucchino, Los Angeles Times
About a dozen African men stood lined along a hallway of the courthouse in the eastern city of Benghazi. The men were suspected of being mercenaries fighting on behalf of Libyan leader Moammar Kadafi and had been rousted from their homes in the morning, turned in by residents responding to a rebel campaign urging them to report "suspicious people."
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But the interview was abruptly ended and the group of Africans were led away to detention by Muhammed Bala, who described himself as a security officer for the rebel government.
"We're out looking for mercenaries every day," Bala said.
Across eastern Libya, rebel fighters and their supporters are detaining, intimidating and frequently beating African immigrants and black Libyans, accusing them of fighting as mercenaries on behalf of Kadafi, witnesses and human rights workers say.
In a few instances, rebels have executed suspected mercenaries captured in battle, according to Human Rights Watch and local Libyans.
The rebel-led provisional government in Benghazi denies mistreating suspected mercenaries, though it acknowledges that it is detaining some for questioning. It says it has given human rights representatives access to detainees.
But rebel fighters and bands of gunmen who looted government weapons depots are reportedly instigating their own detentions and beatings.
Kadafi has long used mercenaries, many of them from sub-Saharan Africa, to help enforce his rule.
As the country has descended into violence in recent weeks, witnesses in the capital,Tripoli, and other cities have reported mercenaries suppressing protests and indiscriminately shooting at civilians.
But Libya also is home to thousands of immigrant laborers as well as black Libyans. In their zeal, human rights officials and witnesses say, rebel fighters in some cases have arbitrarily killed some mercenaries and in others cases failed to distinguish between them and non-combatants.
In the eastern city of Beida and in other areas under rebel control, several accused mercenaries have been killed recently, said Peter Bouckaert, emergencies director for Human Rights Watch in Libya. There have been "widespread and systematic attacks" on Africans and black Libyans by rebels and their supporters as they attempt to root out suspected mercenaries, he said.
"Thousands of Africans have come under attack and lost their homes and possessions during the recent fighting," Bouckaert said in an interview Friday in Benghazi. "A lot of Africans have been caught up in this mercenary hysteria."
He called the rebel fighters and gunmen "ad hoc military and security forces."
The provisional government says it is struggling to control thousands of armed men fighting under the banner of the "revolutionary movement." There is no central military leadership or chain of command, only undisciplined street fighters.
"This is a revolution. We're starting from zero," said Mustafa Gheriani, an official with the provisional government in Benghazi, who said detainees are well-treated. "We don't have structures in place to deal with these issues."
The BBC constantly scream racism in the UK - but since the start of the Libyan war they have lied and hidden the truth that the war in Libya is a war for oil and a race war against African Blacks in the country.
More blacks have been lynched in Libya than were ever lynched in America during Jim Crow.
Never again let the BBC or media call Nationalists 'racists - they are the agents of a racist pogrom in Libya - the worst racial murders since WW2.
Vengeance in Tripoli: rebels settle scores
UN urges restraint as the rebels wreak their revenge on 'loyalists'
By Kim Sengupta in Tripoli
Saturday, 27 August 2011
The Libyan rebels have been meting out brutal treatment to sub-Saharan Africans in Tripoli, suspecting that they are Gaddafi loyalists
"Come and see. These are blacks, Africans, hired by Gaddafi, mercenaries," shouted Ahmed Bin Sabri, lifting the tent flap to show the body of one dead patient, his grey T-shirt stained dark red with blood, the saline pipe running into his arm black with flies. Why had an injured man receiving treatment been executed? Mr Sabri, more a camp follower than a fighter, shrugged. It was seemingly incomprehensible to him that anything wrong had been done.
The corpses were on the grass verges of two large roundabouts between Bab al-Aziziyah, Muammar Gaddafi's compound stormed by the revolutionaries at the weekend and Abu Salim, a loyalist district which saw three days of ferocious violence.
The United Nations issued an urgent call for restraint by both sides in the bloody and bitter endgame to the civil war yesterday. But the thirst for vengeance has been difficult to control, to which the morgues, hospitals and the urban killings fields of the Libyan capital bore testimony.
The dire warning in Col Gaddafi's latest broadcast that the population of Tripoli would be persecuted by the revolutionaries and women would be raped in their homes is unsubstantiated, as are similar claims by his official apologist, Moussa Ibrahim.
It is also the case that the regime has repeatedly unleashed appalling violence on its own people. But the mounting number of deaths of men from sub-Saharan Africa at the hands of the rebels – lynchings in many cases – raises disturbing questions about the opposition administration, the Transitional National Council (TNC) taking over as Libya's government, and about Western backing for it.
The atrocities have apparently not been confined to Tripoli: Amnesty International has reported similar violence in the coastal town of Zawiyah, much of it against men from sub-Saharan Africa who, it has been claimed, were migrant workers.
The Independent understands that the suspected atrocities by rebel fighters have been raised with members of the TNC in recent days by British officials, who made clear their "concern" at the reports coming out of Tripoli and the expectation in London that anyone suspected of war crimes will face trial. The Foreign Office underlined that the apparent executions of pro-Gaddafi soldiers were as yet unverified.
A spokesman said: "We are aware of reports, but have no means of verifying them. We condemn all human rights abuses. The TNC leadership has made clear the need to avoid violence and reprisals and has repeatedly said that anyone found guilty of crimes will be held to account. We have emphasised the importance of this in our conversations with them. This is in stark contrast to Gaddafi, who continues to launch indiscriminate and violent attacks on the Libyan people."
But, for some on the ground in Tripoli, a different view has taken hold. Since the start of the uprising last February the opposition has tried to portray the conflict as waged by patriotic Libyans against the dictator's foreign hired guns. A few of the tales took fanciful turns, such as that about the crack team of female snipers, either Serbian or Colombian, depending on the version. But it was black males, very often migrant workers, who paid the lethal price after being accused of being mercenaries.
Only a few of the dead found at the roundabouts yesterday were in uniform. However, regime forces have often worn civilian clothes during combat in Tripoli. The street-fighting for Abu Salim was particularly fierce with regime snipers taking a steady toll among the ranks of al-Shabaab volunteer fighters. The losses, and frustration at the continuing stubborn resistance by the enemy after an entry into the capital greeted with celebration by residents, has led to something approaching fury among some of the revolutionaries in the last few days.
"They were shooting at us and that is the reason they were killed," said Mushab Abdullah, a 35-year-old rebel fighter from Misrata, pointing at the bodies. "It had been really tough at Abu Salim, because these mercenaries know that, without Gaddafi to protect them, they are in big trouble. That is why they were fighting so hard."
His companion, Mohammed Tariq Muthar, counted them off on the fingers of his hand: "We have found mercenaries from Chad, Niger, Mali and Ghana, all with guns. And they took action against us."
But, if the men had been killed in action, why did they have their hands tied behind their back? "Maybe they were injured, and they had to be brought to this hospital and the handcuffs were to stop them from attacking. And then something went wrong," suggested Mr Abdullah.
Ethnic Libyan "collaborators", too, have been the subject of the punitive attention of the revolutionaries. The prison at Abu Salim, a place of fear where 1,200 prisoners were slaughtered by the regime in 1996, had its doors flung open by the revolutionaries on Thursday, letting 4,000 inmates free. Now there is talk of using the complex for captured Gaddafi troops.
Meanwhile, Ahmed Safar Warfalla was being held in a temporary "cell", a locked room at a school in the suburb of Tajoura. Mr Warfalla has been accused of spreading Gaddafi propaganda. Three Chadian "mercenaries" kept at the same place had already been transferred to jail and the local militia was considering what to do with him.
"They accuse me of a crime, but this is what I did," said Mr Warfalla taking out a copy of the Koran from his pocket and pointing it to the sky. "Allah and Libya," he shouted. "They have Nato technology? This is Arab, Muslim technology. We shall not be defeated."
After a brief consultation, the militia decided to let Mr Warfalla go. "What is the point of keeping him; the man is mad!" said Adussalem Mohammed Ashur. "If it was me and I was a prisoner of Gaddafi then I would not have come out so easily. People have disappeared for saying things."
Amnesty International stated yesterday that it had uncovered evidence that regime forces had killed detainees held at two camps in Tripoli. One of the attacks took place at a military camp in Khilit al-Ferjan where 160 detainees attempted to get away after the guards told them that the gates were unlocked. "As the detainees barged through the hangar gates, two other guards opened fire and threw five hand grenades at the group," said the human rights group in a report. Twenty-three of the prisoners managed to make good their escape and were able to receive treatment at a Tripoli hospital.
Meanwhile, RAF Tornado GR4 warplanes fired Cruise missiles at a bunker in Sirte, Col Gaddafi's hometown which is continuing to stave off rebel attacks. Ahmed Bani, a military spokesman for the TNC, said "Maybe this will help. Maybe the mercenaries there will run away. This will allow the local people to rise up and we can bring this to a conclusion."
Friday, 26 August 2011
At last year’s general election, the far-right British National Party (BNP) were routed across the board. It was hailed as a knock-out blow to the country’s radical right-wing, to a brand of politics derided as intolerance in a suit. The BNP’s leader, Nick Griffin, lost out to Labour incumbent Margaret Hodge in the east London seat of Barking, and was dealt a frightful ear-bashing for his troubles.
“On behalf of all the people in Britain, we in Barking have not just beaten but we have smashed the attempt of extremist outsiders,” Hodge said after retaining her seat. “The message of Barking to the BNP is clear, get out and stay out. You are not wanted here and your vile politics have no place in British democracy.”
But events of recent weeks suggest that, although the BNP bogeyman may have been hobbled at the ballot box, the firebrands have not yet flamed out. Far from it. Two weeks ago, as the country was convulsed by riots, the English Defence League (EDL), a far-right ‘street protest movement’, seized on public outrage to reinforce its hardline anti-immigration stance. On September 3, another flashpoint looms, with the EDL planning a march through Tower Hamlets, organisers promising to take “our message into the heart of militant Islam within our own country”.
According to Matthew Goodwin, author of New British Fascism: The Rise Of The British National Party, there remains strong grassroots support for policies espoused by the BNP and its ilk, even if it has not been mobilised effectively.
“In Britain, we’ve never had an organisation that’s taken advantage of it, that’s presented itself as a modern, credible alternative – the BNP tried but failed miserably,” Goodwin says. “The traditional weakness in Britain is that these parties have shot themselves in the foot.“
According to Goodwin, the key driver of support for far-right parties like the BNP and, its apparent successor, the EDL, is opposition to immigration and the sense that the government is out of touch on this issue. In particular, though, those on the far-right are obsessed with the ‘cultural threat’ posed by Muslims, homegrown or otherwise.
“Even though the BNP is pretty much finished, the trends that fuelled its support remain in place,” Goodwin says. “That section of the public remains concerned about Muslim communities and the way they integrate and the way the major parties approach that.
“So while some people, especially on the left, were celebrating the failure of the BNP, I would be far more cautious because it’s not going to suddenly disappear. Where do all these ideologically committed activists go? Some of them are so committed that they won’t just withdraw, they won’t just decide that the time has passed. They’re more likely to conclude that direct action is the answer.”
The rise of anti-Islamic sentiment is not a peculiarly British phenomena. And, unavoidably, any discussion of its European counterpoints recalls Anders Breivik, who murdered 69 people in Norway last month. Breivik was a rabid Islamophobe who frequented hard-right websites and whose online manifesto fetishised a coming ‘clash of civilisations’. In discussing the resilience and ideological oomph of the British far-right, Goodwin ponders an uncomfortable hypothetical: what if Breivik had grown up in Leeds or Bradford or Birmingham, instead of Oslo?
“Breivik is not unique; the scale of violence was unique but his motivation was not unique. I must have sat down with 50 activists who talked about the same kind of direct action and the threat of Islam,” Goodwin says.
“So if Breivik was to implant himself in the British far-right or if there was a British equivalent, there’s no doubt the groups over here offer a climate for people like him and the frames to justify acts of violence.”
According to Goodwin, the internet and its seething miasma of hard-right proselytisation is a crucial factor in establishing these so-called frames – the fundamentals men like Breivik embrace, the prism through which they come to see the world.
“The internet enables the far-right to offer their view, their diagnosis with what’s wrong with the country, without interference from other media. It’s a process called ‘narrowcasting’, where people no longer tune in to BBC or CNN – they begin to get all their information from one forum, one source.
“These sites, like The Brussels Journal or the Gates Of Vienna, bring like-minded people together to exchange ideas and exchange tactics. The far-right has been one of the quickest movements to realise the potential of the internet.”
The robustness of this online community, broiling away in the corners of cyberspace, bolsters Goodwin’s conviction that, with or without the BNP, the sun is unlikely to set on these far-right groups any time soon; not unless governments can engage and ameliorate the grievances of those drawn to the right-wing fringe.
“I think the far-right will basically go in two directions,” Goodwin says. “You’ll have the organised parties who try to influence policy, but you’ll also have these groups, movements, lone wolves, who reject the ballot box, who come to the conclusion that the political parties haven’t made any progress.
“Where do those activists go? Do they just withdraw or do they adopt a more confrontational approach?”
read more: http://www.tntmagazine.com/tnt-today/archive/2011/08/24/far-right-activists-unlikely-to-fade-away.aspx#ixzz1W8GtnJDV
A Labour backbencher has suggested the prime minister "cynically" exploited racist extremism for political ends by not banning Hizb ut-Tahrir.
In an article for politics.co.uk Toby Perkins criticised David Cameron's failure to ban the controversial Islamic organisation despite promising to do so when in opposition.
He said that Cameron's condemnation of the organisation may have been a cynical decision intended to "play on racial tensions for naked political advantage".
In a manifesto pledge the Conservatives promised to ban any organisations that "advocate hate or the violent overthrow of our society" and specifically referenced Hizb ut-Tahrir.
However in response to a question on the issue by Mr Perkins at PMQs the prime minister said: "It is endlessly frustrating that we are subject to so many legal requirements, but I am afraid that we have to be a government under the law."
The Chesterfield MP suggests that this answer points to one of two conclusions.
Firstly, that the prime minister put forward the policy in opposition without checking its legality and thus did not show due diligence, or alternatively he did check it but decided to use it regardless and then quietly drop it as unworkable once in government.
If the second conclusion is accurate Mr Perkins argues this will show David Cameron acted cynically, fully aware that the policy would not be tenable.
He added: "Either way, another facet of our prime minister's character is exposed and our politics is the poorer for it."
In June 2007 David Cameron, then leader of the opposition, asked the new prime minister Gordon Brown why the organisation had not been banned, labelling it an extremist group.
Hizb ut-Tahrir has long been a controversial topic and Labour failed to ban the organisation despite announcing their intention to do so after the July 7th 2005 London bombings.
At the time police, intelligence chiefs and many civil liberties groups warned that Hizb ut-Tahrir was non-violent and pushing it underground could exacerbate the problem.
However the pan-Islamic political group has many opponents due to the emphasis it places on Muslims choosing loyalty to their religion over their country.
It has an estimated one million members worldwide and has run into trouble on a number of occasions elsewhere in Europe.
In Denmark in 2002 a Danish court determined leaflets handed out to be racist propaganda, while the German government banned the organisation from public activity based on a charge of distributing anti-semitic propaganda.
An Italian radio program's story about Iceland’s on-going revolution is a stunning example of how little our media tells us about the rest of the world. Americans may remember that at the start of the 2008 financial crisis, Iceland literally went bankrupt. The reasons were mentioned only in passing, and since then, this little-known member of the European Union fell back into oblivion.
As one European country after another fails or risks failing, imperiling the Euro, with repercussions for the entire world, the last thing the powers that be want is for Iceland to become an example. Here's why:
Five years of a pure neo-liberal regime had made Iceland, (population 320 thousand, no army), one of the richest countries in the world. In 2003 all the country’s banks were privatized, and in an effort to attract foreign investors, they offered on-line banking whose minimal costs allowed them to offer relatively high rates of return. The accounts, called IceSave, attracted many English and Dutch small investors. But as investments grew, so did the banks’ foreign debt. In 2003 Iceland’s debt was equal to 200 times its GNP, but in 2007, it was 900 percent. The 2008 world financial crisis was the coup de grace. The three main Icelandic banks, Landbanki, Kapthing and Glitnir, went belly up and were nationalized, while the Kroner lost 85% of its value with respect to the Euro. At the end of the year Iceland declared bankruptcy.
Contrary to what could be expected, the crisis resulted in Icelanders recovering their sovereign rights, through a process of direct participatory democracy that eventually led to a new Constitution. But only after much pain.
Geir Haarde, the Prime Minister of a Social Democratic coalition government, negotiated a two million one hundred thousand dollar loan, to which the Nordic countries added another two and a half million. But the foreign financial community pressured Iceland to impose drastic measures. The FMI and the European Union wanted to take over its debt, claiming this was the only way for the country to pay back Holland and Great Britain, who had promised to reimburse their citizens.
Protests and riots continued, eventually forcing the government to resign. Elections were brought forward to April 2009, resulting in a left-wing coalition which condemned the neoliberal economic system, but immediately gave in to its demands that Iceland pay off a total of three and a half million Euros. This required each Icelandic citizen to pay 100 Euros a month (or about $130) for fifteen years, at 5.5% interest, to pay off a debt incurred by private parties vis a vis other private parties. It was the straw that broke the reindeer’s back.
What happened next was extraordinary. The belief that citizens had to pay for the mistakes of a financial monopoly, that an entire nation must be taxed to pay off private debts was shattered, transforming the relationship between citizens and their political institutions and eventually driving Iceland’s leaders to the side of their constituents. The Head of State, Olafur Ragnar Grimsson, refused to ratify the law that would have made Iceland’s citizens responsible for its bankers’ debts, and accepted calls for a referendum.
Of course the international community only increased the pressure on Iceland. Great Britain and Holland threatened dire reprisals that would isolate the country. As Icelanders went to vote, foreign bankers threatened to block any aid from the IMF. The British government threatened to freeze Icelander savings and checking accounts. As Grimsson said: “We were told that if we refused the international community’s conditions, we would become the Cuba of the North. But if we had accepted, we would have become the Haiti of the North.” (How many times have I written that when Cubans see the dire state of their neighbor, Haiti, they count themselves lucky.)
In the March 2010 referendum, 93% voted against repayment of the debt. The IMF immediately froze its loan. But the revolution (though not televised in the United States), would not be intimidated. With the support of a furious citizenry, the government launched civil and penal investigations into those responsible for the financial crisis. Interpol put out an international arrest warrant for the ex-president of Kaupthing, Sigurdur Einarsson, as the other bankers implicated in the crash fled the country.
But Icelanders didn't stop there: they decided to draft a new constitution that would free the country from the exaggerated power of international finance and virtual money. (The one in use had been written when Iceland gained its independence from Denmark, in 1918, the only difference with the Danish constitution being that the word ‘president’ replaced the word ‘king’.)
To write the new constitution, the people of Iceland elected twenty-five citizens from among 522 adults not belonging to any political party but recommended by at least thirty citizens. This document was not the work of a handful of politicians, but was written on the internet. The constituent’s meetings are streamed on-line, and citizens can send their comments and suggestions, witnessing the document as it takes shape. The constitution that eventually emerges from this participatory democratic process will be submitted to parliament for approval after the next elections.
Some readers will remember that Iceland’s ninth century agrarian collapse was featured in Jared Diamond’s book by the same name. Today, that country is recovering from its financial collapse in ways just the opposite of those generally considered unavoidable, as confirmed yesterday by the new head of the IMF, Christine Lagarde to Fareed Zakaria. The people of Greece have been told that the privatization of their public sector is the only solution. And those of Italy, Spain and Portugal are facing the same threat.
They should look to Iceland. Refusing to bow to foreign interests, that small country stated loud and clear that the people are sovereign.
That’s why it is not in the news anymore
With the rebels knocking at the doors of Gaddafi Compound in Tripoli, the fate of Colonel Muammer Gaddafi and his cohorts seems to have been sealed for good. The storm that rose from the desert of Benghazi has swept along the Mediterranean coast line to the doors of Tripoli, duly supported by the greatest debtors of our times, the United States and company. While recalling the events that we have witnessed in past six months and the behavior of US led NATO alliance, one would rather become confused and perplexed. A few years back Gaddafi had wooed the west by opening Libya to the international community, everything looked hunky dory, Sarkozi, Tony Blair, Berlusconi and even Obama administration embraced the Colonel with accolades of Champion of Africa and the great Berber from the desert. Libyan oil tap was fully opened to keep the prices of oil in check and it appeared that the good old Colonel had developed comfortable relationship with the people across the Mediterranean lake and that Libya was to become a player in the new Africa scheme.
And suddenly, we all discovered that the Colonel was the worst thing that had happened to entire coastline of North Africa, and had to be ousted at the first God given opportunity, and in this new game of establishing a bridgehead in North Africa, even Al Quaida was welcome to become a bedfellow of Obama, Sarkozi ,Cameron and Rasmusen. While one should congratulate the Libyan people for getting rid of Gaddafy’s 42 years of rule (despite a per capita of 14000 USD and good social system,42 years monochrome of Gaddafi was too much for the Libyan people and probably they got bored with his idiosyncrasies),one would wonder at the mood of the US led coalition and her ability to keep the world preoccupied in the business of war.
On April 26, 2011 Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya of Global Research described the Libyan War as, “Plans to attack Libya have been longstanding. The imperial war machine of the United States, Britain, France, Italy, and their NATO allies is involved in a new military adventure that parallels the events that led to the wars against Yugoslavia and Iraq. The war machine has been mobilized under the cover of “humanitarian intervention.”In fact what the Pentagon and NATO have done is breach international law by intervening on the side of one of the combating parties in Libya in a civil war that they themselves have encouraged and fuelled. They have not protected civilians, but have launched a war against the Libyan regime in Tripoli and actively assisted the Benghazi-based Transitional Council in fighting the Libyan military”. As we analyse the conduct of military campaign against Libya, one is shocked to find the blatant use of classic Chankia theory, the enemy of my enemy is my friend as well as courting people and groups you have put on the terror watch list. Richard Spencer while reporting from Tripoli in the Telegraph remarked far back as March this year in his article, Libya: the West and al-Qaeda on the same side concluded that, statements of support for Libya's revolution by al-Qaeda and leading Islamists have led to fears that military action by the West might be playing into the hands of its ideological enemies. Was this a deliberate attempt to insult the Islamic World as well as convey a message of impotency of the developing world to do anything against the wishes of the west or, it was a classical play of Chaos theory to create mayhem in the Middle East and North Africa to set a stage for unfolding of a new game in Africa and the Islamic World. It may be difficult to analyze the entire spectrum of Chaos game being played(as public sentiment of the Arab spring is a reality and cannot be labeled as a conspiracy of the west),one thing is certain, such games have been recently played in Iraq and the Af-Pak region, where Blackwater and CIA played the dirty game of dividing West Asia along sectarian lines, no wonder the TTP in Pakistan had a clear stamp of RAW-MOSSAD-CIA trio on its royal backside, when it unleashed a reign of terror in FATA,KPK and rest of Pakistan. Pakistan was made into a friend and foe simultaneously.
Is Libya the end of US led coalition operations in the region or the start of Chaos in Africa? This is a million dollar question. Libya is an ideal bridgehead into Africa as it sits on a piece of land with geostrategic significance. It allows the oil tap to remain open and the quantity manipulation against any oil related initiatives by Middle Eastern Arabs, Iran or Venezuela. It keeps the entire Middle East and their leadership guessing and perplexed with a hidden message, you may be next. It limits strategic space for the Rise of the Rest (China, India, Russia etc). It allows the intelligence apparatus of CIA,MI5,NATO etc to establish a foothold in Africa and initiate new games in Sudan, Algeria, Egypt, Central Africa and rest of Africa south of equator. Finally ,it gives a shut up call to the common American and European (fed up with the Long War and poor economy), urging him that the white man was busy in important issues abroad and domestic worries were trivial and nonsensical.
Is the Transitional National Council going to listen to US led coalition’s suggestion for a post war Libya or go independently on solo flight? I have a hunch that Libya’s war will drag on as we witness fishers between the US led coalition and the Transition Government led by rebels grow into a wider chasm. The Telegraph reported on 22nd August about Mahmoud Jibril’s address to the Libyan people, speaking on the Libyan opposition's dedicated television network, Ahrar TV, the chairman of the Transitional National Council issued a statement in the early hours of Monday proclaiming the end of the Gaddafi regime and a new beginning for Libya."Today, all Libya's people are allowed to participate in the building of the future to build institutions with the aid of a constitution that does not differentiate between a man and a woman, sects or ethnicities." Jibril said. He added: "Libya is for everyone and will now be for everyone."
Let us hope that the Holy month of Ramazan brings glad tidings to the people of Libya and they are able to distinguish between friend and the foe in this entire game of Chaos.
OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) - The nation's second-largest Indian tribe formally booted from membership thousands of descendants of black slaves who were brought to Oklahoma more than 170 years ago by Native American owners.
The Cherokee nation voted after the Civil War to admit the slave descendants to the tribe.
But on Monday, the Cherokee nation Supreme Court ruled that a 2007 tribal decision to kick the so-called "Freedmen" out of the tribe was proper.
The controversy stems from a footnote in the brutal history of U.S. treatment of Native Americans. When many Indians were forced to move to what later became Oklahoma from the eastern U.S. in 1838, some who had owned plantations in the South brought along their slaves.
Some 4,000 Indians died during the forced march, which became known as the "Trail of Tears."
"And our ancestors carried the baggage," said Marilyn Vann, the Freedman leader who is a plaintiff in the legal battle.
Officially, there are about 2,800 Freedmen, but another 3,500 have tribal membership applications pending, and there could be as many as 25,000 eligible to enter the tribe, according to Vann.
The tribal court decision was announced one day before absentee ballots were to be mailed in the election of the Cherokee Principal Chief.
"This is racism and apartheid in the 21st Century," said Vann, an engineer who lives in Oklahoma City.
Spokesmen for the tribe did not respond when asked to comment.
The move to exclude the Freedmen has rankled some African American members of Congress, which has jurisdiction over all Native American tribes in the country.
A lawsuit challenging the Freedman's removal from the tribe has been pending in federal court in Washington, for about six years.
As a sovereign nation, Cherokee Nation officials maintain that the tribe has the right to amend its constitutional membership requirements.
Removal from the membership rolls means the Freedmen will no longer be eligible for free health care and other benefits such as education concessions.
(Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Greg McCune)
Islamic mosques are being built more often in France than Roman Catholic churches, and there now are more practising Muslims in the country than practising Catholics.
Nearly 150 new mosques currently are under construction in France, home to the biggest Muslim community in Europe. The mosque-building projects are at various stages of completion, according to Mohammed Moussaoui, the president of the Muslim Council of France (CFCM), who provided the data in an August 2 interview with the French radio station RTL.
The total number of mosques in France has already doubled to more than 2,000 during just the past ten years, according to a research report "Constructing Mosques: The Governance of Islam in France and the Netherlands." France's most prominent Muslim leader, Dalil Boubakeur, who is rector of the Grand Mosque of Paris, recently called for the number of mosques in the country to be doubled again – to 4,000 – to meet growing demand.
By contrast, the Roman Catholic Church in France has built only 20 new churches during the past decade, and has formally closed more than 60 churches, many of which are destined to become mosques, according to research conducted by La Croix, a Roman Catholic daily newspaper based in Paris.
Although 64% of the French population (or 41.6 million of France's 65 million inhabitants) identifies itself as Roman Catholic, only 4.5% (or 1.9 million) of those actually are practising Catholics, according to the French Institute of Public Opinion (or Ifop, as it is usually called).
By way of comparison, 75% (or 4.5 million) of the estimated 6 million mostly ethnic North African and sub-Saharan Muslims in France identify themselves as "believers" and 41% (or 2.5 million) say they are "practising" Muslims, according to an in-depth research report on Islam in France published by Ifop on August 1. The report also says that more than 70% of the Muslims in France say they will be observing the Islamic holy month of Ramadan in 2011.
Taken together, the research data provides empirical evidence that Islam is well on its way to overtaking Roman Catholicism as the dominant religion in France.
As their numbers grow, Muslims in France are becoming far more assertive than ever before. A case in point: Muslim groups in France are now asking the Roman Catholic Church for permission to use its empty churches as a way to solve the traffic problems caused by thousands of Muslims who pray in the streets.
In a March 11 communiqué addressed to the Church of France, the National Federation of the Great Mosque of Paris, the Council of Democratic Muslims of France and a Muslim activist group called Collectif Banlieues Respect called on the Catholic Church – in a spirit of inter-religious solidarity, of course – to make its empty churches available to Muslims for Friday prayers, so that Muslims do not have to "pray in the streets" and be "held hostage to politics."
Every Friday, thousands of Muslims in Paris and other French cities close off streets and sidewalks (and by extension, close down local businesses and trap non-Muslim residents in their homes and offices) to accommodate overflowing crowds for midday prayers. Some mosques have also begun broadcasting sermons and chants of "Allah Akbar" via loudspeakers in the streets.
The weekly spectacles, which have been documented by dozens of videos posted on Youtube.com (here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here), have provoked anger and disbelief. But despite many public complaints, local authorities have declined to intervene because they are afraid of sparking riots.
The issue of illegal street prayers was catapulted to the top of the national political agenda in France in December 2010, when Marine Le Pen, the charismatic new leader of the far-right National Front party, denounced them as an "occupation without tanks or soldiers."
During a gathering in the east central French city of Lyon on December 10, Le Pen compared Muslims praying in the streets to Nazi occupation. She said: "For those who want to talk a lot about World War II, if it is about occupation, then we could also talk about it [Muslim prayers in the streets], because that is occupation of territory. It is an occupation of sections of the territory, of districts in which religious laws apply. It is an occupation. There are of course no tanks, there are no soldiers but it is nevertheless an occupation and it weighs heavily on local residents."
Many French voters agree. In fact, the issue of Muslim street prayers – and the broader question of the role of Islam in French society – has become a major issue ahead of the 2012 presidential elections. According to a survey by Ifop for the France-Soir newspaper, nearly 40% of French voters agree with Len Pen's views that Muslim prayer in the streets resembles an occupation. Another opinion poll published by Le Parisien newspaper shows that voters view Le Pen, who has criss-crossed the country arguing that France has been invaded by Muslims and betrayed by its elite, as the candidate best suited to deal with the growing problem of runaway Muslim immigration.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy, whose popularity was at 25% in July – worse than any predecessor less than a year ahead of a re-election bid, according to the TNS-Sofres polling group – has been spooked by Le Pen's advance in the opinion polls. He now seems determined not to allow Le Pen to monopolize the issue of Islam in France.
Sarkozy recently called Muslim prayers in the street "unacceptable" and said that the street cannot be allowed to become "an extension of the mosque." He also warned that the overflow of Muslim faithful on to the streets at prayer time when mosques are packed to capacity risks undermining the French secular tradition separating state and religion.
Interior Minister Claude Guéant on August 8 told Muslims who have been praying on the streets of Paris that they should utilize a disused barracks instead. "Praying in the street is something that is not acceptable," Guéant said. "It has to stop."
Meanwhile, France ushered in Ramadan by inaugurating a new mega-mosque for 2,000 worshipers in Strasbourg, where the Muslim population has reached 15%. Construction also continues apace of a new mega-mosque in Marseille, France's second-largest city where the Muslim population has reached 25% (or 250,000). The Grand Mosque – which at more than 8,300 square meters (92,000 square feet) will accommodate up to 7,000 worshippers in a vast prayer hall – is designed to be the biggest and most potent symbol of Islam's place in modern France.
Boubakeur, of the Grande Mosque of Paris, says the construction of even more mosques – paid for by French taxpayers – would ease the "pressure, frustration and the sense of injustice" felt by many French Muslims. "Open a mosque and you close a prison," says Boubakeur.
But Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has implied that the construction of mosques and minarets actually is part of a strategy for the Islamization of Europe. Publicly repeating the words of a 1912 poem written by the Turkish nationalist poet Ziya Gökalp, Erdogan said: "The mosques are our barracks, the domes our helmets, the minarets our bayonets and the faithful our soldiers."
Reflecting on the retreat of Catholicism and the rise of Islam in France, Archbishop Giuseppe Bernardini, an Italian Franciscan who heads the Izmir archdiocese in Turkey, and who has lived in the Islamic world for more than 40 years, has recounted a conversation he once had with a Muslim leader, who told him: "Thanks to your democratic laws, we will invade you. Thanks to our religious laws, we will dominate you."
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