Think of it as the all-American version of the human comedy: a great power that eternally knows what the world needs and offers copious advice with a tone deafness that would be humorous, if it weren’t so grim.
If you look, you can find examples of this just about anywhere. Here, for instance, is a passage in The New York Times from a piece on the topsy-turvy Trumpian negotiations that preceded the Singapore summit. “The Americans and South Koreans,” wrote reporter Motoko Rich, “want to persuade the North that continuing to funnel most of the country’s resources into its military and nuclear programs shortchanges its citizens’ economic well-being. But the North does not see the two as mutually exclusive.”
Think about that for a moment. The US has, of course, embarked on a trillion-dollar-plus upgrade of its already massive nuclear arsenal (and that’s before the cost overruns even begin). Its Congress and president have for years proved eager to sink at least a trillion dollars annually into the budget of the national security state (a figure that’s still rising and outpaces by far that of any other power on the planet), while its own infrastructure sags and crumbles. And yet it finds the impoverished North Koreans puzzling when they, too, follow such an extreme path.
“Clueless” is not a word Americans ordinarily apply to themselves as a country, a people, or a government. Yet how applicable it is.
And when it comes to cluelessness, there’s another, far stranger path the United States has been following since at least the George W Bush moment that couldn’t be more consequential and yet somehow remains the least noticed of all. On this subject, Americans don’t have a clue. In fact, if you could put the United States on a psychiatrist’s couch, this might be the place to start.
In a way, it’s the oldest story on Earth: the rise and fall of empires. And note the plural there. It was never – not until recently at least – “empire,” always “empires.” Since the 15th century, when the fleets of the first European imperial powers broke into the larger world with subjugation in mind, it was invariably a contest of many. There were at least three or sometimes significantly more imperial powers rising and contesting for dominance or slowly falling from it.
This was, by definition, the history of great powers on this planet: the challenging rise, the challenged decline. Think of it for so many centuries as the essential narrative of history, the story of how it all happened until at least 1945, when just two “superpowers,” the United States and the Soviet Union, found themselves facing off on a global scale.
Of the two, the US was always stronger, more powerful, and far wealthier. It theoretically feared the Russian Bear, the Evil Empire, which it worked assiduously to “contain” behind that famed Iron Curtain and whose adherents in the US, always modest in number, were subjected to a mania of fear and suppression.
However, the truth – at least in retrospect – was that, in the Cold War years, the Soviets were actually doing Washington a strange, if unnoted, favor. Across much of the Eurasian continent, and other places from Cuba to the Middle East, Soviet power and the never-ending contest for influence and dominance that went with it always reminded American leaders that their own power had its limits.
This, as the 21st century should have (but hasn’t) made clear, was no small thing. It still seemed obvious then that American power could not be total. There were things it could not do, places it could not control, dreams its leaders simply couldn’t have. Though no one ever thought of it that way, from 1945 to 1991, the United States, like the Soviet Union, was, after a fashion, “contained.”
In those years, the Russians were, in essence, saving Washington from itself. Soviet power was a tangible reminder to American political and military leaders that certain areas of the planet remained no-go zones (except in what, in those years, were called “the shadows”).
The Soviet Union, in short, rescued Washington from both the fantasy and the hell of going it alone, even if Americans only grasped that reality at the most subliminal of levels.
That was the situation until December 1991 when, at the end of a centuries-long imperial race for power (and the never-ending arms race that went with it), there was just one gigantic power left standing on Planet Earth. It told you something about the thinking then that, when the Soviet Union imploded, the initial reaction in Washington wasn’t triumphalism (though that came soon enough) but utter shock, a disbelieving sense that something no one had expected, predicted, or even imagined had nonetheless happened. To that very moment, Washington had continued to plan for a two-superpower world until the end of time.
Soon enough, though, the Washington elite came to see what happened as, in the phrase of the moment, “the end of history.” Given the wreckage of the Soviet Union, it seemed that an ultimate victory had been won by the very country its politicians would soon come to call “the last superpower,” the “indispensable” nation, the “exceptional” state, a land great beyond imagining (until, at least, Donald Trump hit the campaign trail with a slogan that implied greatness wasn’t all-American any more).
In reality, there were a variety of paths open to the “last superpower” at that moment. There was even, however briefly, talk of a “peace dividend” – of the possibility that, in a world without contesting superpowers, taxpayer dollars might once again be invested not in the sinews of war-making but of peacemaking (particularly in infrastructure and the well-being of the country’s citizens).
Such talk, however, lasted only a year or two and always in a minor key before being relegated to Washington’s attic. Instead, with only a few rickety “rogue” states left to deal with – like… gulp … North Korea, Iraq and Iran – that money never actually headed home, and neither did the thinking that went with it.
Consider it the good fortune of the geopolitical dreamers soon to take the reins in Washington that the first Gulf War of 1990-1991, which ended less than a year before the Soviet Union collapsed, prepared the way for quite a different style of thinking. That instant victory led to a new kind of militarized dreaming in which a highly tech-savvy military, like the one that had driven Iraqi autocrat Saddam Hussein’s forces out of Kuwait in such short order, would be capable of doing anything on a planet without serious opposition.
And yet, from the beginning, there were signs suggesting a far grimmer future. To take but one infamous example, Americans still remember the Black Hawk Down moment of 1993 when the world’s greatest military fell victim to a Somali warlord and local militias and found itself incapable of imposing its will on one of the least impressive not-quite-states on the planet (a place still frustrating that military a quarter-century later).
In that post-1991 world, however, few in Washington even considered that the 20th century had loosed another phenomenon on the world, that of insurgent national liberation movements, generally leftist rebellions, across what had been the colonial world – the very world of competing empires now being tucked into the history books – and it hadn’t gone away. In the 21st century, such insurgent movements, now largely religious, or terror-based, or both, would turn out to offer a grim new version of containment to the last superpower.
Unchaining the indispensable nation
On September 11, 2001, a canny global jihadist by the name of Osama bin Laden sent his air force (four hijacked US passenger jets) and his precision weaponry (19 suicidal, mainly Saudi followers) against three iconic targets in the American pantheon: the Pentagon, the World Trade Center, and undoubtedly the Capitol or the White House (neither of which was hit because one of those jets crashed in a field in Pennsylvania). In doing so, in a sense bin Laden not only loosed a literal hell on Earth, but unchained the last superpower.
William Shakespeare would have had a word for what followed: hubris. But give the top officials of the Bush administration (and the neocons who supported them) a break. There had never been a moment like it: a moment of one. A single great power left alone, triumphant, on planet Earth. Just one superpower – wealthy beyond compare, its increasingly high-tech military unmatched, its only true rival in a state of collapse – had now been challenged by a small jihadist group.
To president Bush, vice-president Dick Cheney, and the rest of their crew, it seemed like nothing short of a heaven-sent opportunity. As they came out of the shock of 9/11, of that “Pearl Harbor of the 21st century,” it was as if they had found a magic formula in the ruins of those iconic buildings for the ultimate control of the planet. As secretary of defense Donald Rumsfeld would instruct an aide at the Pentagon that day, “Go massive. Sweep it up. Things related and not.”
Within days, things related and not were indeed being swept up. The country was almost instantly said to be “at war,” and soon that conflict even had a name, the Global War on Terror. Nor was that war to be against just al-Qaeda, or even one country, an Afghanistan largely ruled by the Taliban. More than 60 countries said to have “terror networks” of various sorts found themselves almost instantly in the administration’s potential gunsights. And that was just to be the beginning of it all.
In October 2001, the invasion of Afghanistan was launched. In the spring of 2003, the invasion of Iraq followed, and those were only the initial steps in what was increasingly envisioned as the imposition of a Pax Americana on the Greater Middle East.
There could be no doubt, for instance, that Iran and Syria, too, would soon go the way of Iraq and Afghanistan. Bush’s top officials had been nursing just such dreams since, in 1997, many of them formed a think-tank (the first ever to enter the White House) called the Project for the New American Century and began to write out what were then the fantasies of figures nowhere near power. By 2003, they were power itself and their dreams, if anything, had grown even more grandiose.
In addition to imagining a political Pax Republicana in the United States, they truly dreamed of a future planetary Pax Americana in which, for the first time in history, a single power would, in some fashion, control the whole works, the Earth itself.
And this wasn’t to be a passing matter either. The Bush administration’s “unilateralism” rested on a conviction that it could actually create a future in which no country or even bloc of countries would ever come close to matching or challenging US military power. The administration’s National Security Strategy of 2002 put the matter bluntly: The US was to “build and maintain” a military, in the phrase of the moment, “beyond challenge.”
They had little doubt that, in the face of the most technologically advanced, bulked-up, destructive force on Earth, hostile states would be “shocked and awed” by a simple demonstration of its power, while friendly ones would have little choice but to come to heel as well. After all, as Bush said at a Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in 2007, the US military was “the greatest force for human liberation the world has ever known.”
Though there was much talk at the time about the “liberation” of Afghanistan and then Iraq, at least in their imaginations the true country being liberated was the planet’s lone superpower. Although the Bush administration was officially considered a “conservative” one, its key officials were geopolitical dreamers of the first order and their vision of the world was the very opposite of conservative. It harkened back to nothing and looked forward to everything.
It was radical in ways that should have, but didn’t, take the American public’s breath away; radical in ways that had never been seen before.
Shock and awe for the last superpower
Think of what those officials did in the post-9/11 moment as the ultimate act of greed. They tried to swallow a whole planet. They were determined to make it a planet of one in a way that had never before been seriously imagined.
It was, to say the least, a vision of madness. Even in a moment when it truly did seem – to them at least – that all constraints had been taken off, an administration of genuine conservatives might have hesitated. Its top officials might, at least, have approached the post-Soviet situation with a modicum of caution and modesty.
But not George W Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and pals. In the face of what seemed like the ultimate in possibilities they proved clueless when it came to the possibility that anything on Earth might have a shot at containing them.
Even among their critics, who could have imagined then that, more than 16 years later, having faced only lightly armed enemies of various sorts, still wealthy beyond compare, still with a military funded in a way the next seven countries couldn’t cumulatively match, the United States would have won literally nothing?
Who could have imagined that, unlike so many preceding imperial powers (including the US of the earlier Cold War era), it would have been able to establish control over nothing at all; that, instead, from Afghanistan to Syria, Iraq deep into Africa, it would find itself in a state of “infinite war” and utter frustration on a planet filled with ever more failed states, destroyed cities, displaced people, and right-wing “populist” governments, including the one in Washington?
Who could have imagined that, with a peace dividend no longer faintly conceivable, this country would have found itself not just in decline, but – a new term is needed to catch the essence of this curious moment – in what might be called self-decline?
Yes, a new power, China, is finally rising – and doing so on a planet that seems itself to be going down. Here, then, is a conclusion that might be drawn from the quarter-century-plus in which America was both unchained and largely alone.
The Earth is admittedly a small orb in a vast universe, but the history of this century so far suggests one reality about which America’s rulers proved utterly clueless: After so many hundreds of years of imperial struggle, this planet still remains too big, too disparate, too ornery to be controlled by a single power. What the Bush administration did was simply take one gulp too many and the result has been a kind of national (and planetary) indigestion.
Despite what it looked like in Washington once upon a time, the disappearance of the Soviet Union proved to be no gift at all, but a disaster of the first order. It removed all sense of limits from America’s political class and led to a tale of greed on a planetary scale. In the process, it also set the US on a path to self-decline.
The history of greed in our time has yet to be written, but what a story it will someday make. In it, the greed of those geopolitical dreamers will intersect with the greed of an ever wealthier, ever more gilded 1%, of the billionaires who were preparing to swallow whole the political system of that last superpower and grab so much of the wealth of the planet, leaving so little for others.
Whether you’re talking about the urge to control the planet militarily or financially, what took place in these years could, in the end, result in ruin of a historic kind. To use a favored phrase from the Bush years, one of these days we Americans may be facing little short of “regime change” on a planetary scale. And what a piece of shock and awe that’s likely to prove to be.
All of us, of course, now live on the planet Bush’s boys tried to swallow whole. They left us in a world of infinite war, infinite harm, and in Donald Trump’s America where cluelessness has been raised to a new power.
For decades, the American people have been repeatedly told by their government and corporate-run media that acts of war ordered by their president have been largely motivated by the need to counter acts of aggression or oppression by “evil dictators.” We were told we had to invade Iraq because Saddam Hussein was an evil dictator. We had to bomb Libya because Muammar Gaddafi was an evil dictator, bent on unleashing a “bloodbath” on his own people. Today, of course, we are told that we should support insurgents in Syria because Bashar al-Assad is an evil dictator, and we must repeatedly rattle our sabers at North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and Russia’s Vladimir Putin because they, too, are evil dictators.
This is part of the larger, usually unquestioned mainstream corporate media narrative that the US leads the “Western democracies” in a global struggle to combat terrorism and totalitarianism and promote democracy.
I set out to answer a simple question: Is it true? Does the US government actually oppose dictatorships and champion democracy around the world, as we are repeatedly told?
The truth is not easy to find, but federal sources do provide an answer: No. According to Freedom House‘s rating system of political rights around the world, there were 49 nations in the world, as of 2015, that can be fairly categorized as “dictatorships.” As of fiscal year 2015, the last year for which we have publicly available data, the federal government of the United States had been providing military assistance to 36 of them, courtesy of your tax dollars. The United States currently supports over 73 percent of the world’s dictatorships!
Most politically aware people know of some of the more highly publicized instances of this, such as the tens of billions of dollars’ worth of US military assistance provided to the beheading capital of the world, the misogynistic monarchy of Saudi Arabia, and the repressive military dictatorship now in power in Egypt. But apologists for our nation’s imperialistic foreign policy may try to rationalize such support, arguing that Saudi Arabia and Egypt are exceptions to the rule. They may argue that our broader national interests in the Middle East require temporarily overlooking the oppressive nature of those particular states, in order to serve a broader, pro-democratic endgame.
Such hogwash could be critiqued on many counts, of course, beginning with its class-biased presumptions about what constitutes US “national interests.” But my survey of US support for dictatorships around the world demonstrates that our government’s support for Saudi Arabia and Egypt are not exceptions to the rule at all. They are the rule.
Sources and Methods
It was not easy to find out how many of the world’s dictatorships are being supported by the United States. No one else seems to be compiling or maintaining a list, so I had to go at it by myself. Here is how I came up with my answer.
Step 1: Determine how many of the world’s governments may be fairly characterized as dictatorships.
A commonly accepted definition of a “dictatorship” is a system of government in which one person or a small group possesses absolute state power, thereby directing all national policies and major acts – leaving the people powerless to alter those decisions or replace those in power by any method short of revolution or coup. I examined a number of websites and organizations that claimed to maintain lists of the world’s dictatorships, but most of them were either dated, listed only the world’s “worst dictators” or had similar limitations, and/or failed to describe their methodology. I ultimately was left with the annual Freedom in the World reports published by Freedom House as the best source for providing a comprehensive list.
This was not entirely satisfactory, as Freedom House has a decidedly pro-US-ruling-class bias. For example, it categorizes Russia as a dictatorship. In the introduction to its 2017 Freedom In the World report, it opines that
“Russia, in stunning displays of hubris and hostility, interfered in the political processes of the United States and other democracies, escalated its military support for the Assad dictatorship in Syria, and solidified its illegal occupation of Ukrainian territory.”
A more objective view would note that claims of interference in the US election by the Russian government have not been proven (unless one is inclined to take certain US intelligence agencies at their word); that Russia was asked by the UN-recognized Syrian government for assistance, in compliance with international law (unlike US acts of aggression and support for insurrection there); and would at least acknowledge that any Russian intervention in Ukraine occurred in the context of the United States’ brazen support for a coup in that nation.
Nonetheless, the Freedom House reports appear to be the best (if not the only) comprehensive gauge of political rights and freedoms covering every nation in the world. It utilizes a team of about 130 in-house and external analysts and expert advisers from the academic, think tank and human rights communities who purportedly use a broad range of sources, including news articles, academic analyses, reports from nongovernmental organizations and individual professional contacts. The analysts’ proposed scores are discussed and defended at annual review meetings, organized by region and attended by Freedom House staff and a panel of expert advisers. The final scores represent the consensus of the analysts, advisers and staff, and are intended to be comparable from year-to-year and across countries and regions. Freedom House concedes that, “although an element of subjectivity is unavoidable in such an enterprise, the ratings process emphasizes methodological consistency, intellectual rigor, and balanced and unbiased judgments.”
One can remain skeptical, but a key consideration is that Freedom House’s pronounced pro-US bias is actually a plus for purposes of this project. If its team of experts tilts toward a pro-US-government perspective, this means that it would indulge every presumption in favor of not categorizing nations supported by the United States as dictatorships. In other words, if even Freedom House categorizes a government backed by the United States as a dictatorship, one can be fairly confident that its assessment, in that instance, is accurate.
For purposes of the present assessment, I used Freedom House’s 2016 Freedom in the World report, even though its 2017 report is now available. I did so because the 2016 report reflects its assessment of political rights and civil liberties as they existed in 2015, which would roughly correspond with the military assistance and arms sales data that I had available for federal fiscal year 2015 (October 1, 2014 – September 30, 2015) and calendar year 2015. (I will work on a new report when such data for fiscal year 2016 becomes available.)
Freedom House uses a scoring system to gauge a nation’s “political rights” and “civil liberties,” in order to rate each country as “free,” “partly free” or “not free,” with a range of scores for each category. It describes its scoring system as follows:
“A country or territory is assigned two ratings (7 to 1) – one for political rights and one for civil liberties – based on its total scores for the political rights and civil liberties questions. Each rating of 1 through 7, with 1 representing the greatest degree of freedom and 7 the smallest degree of freedom, corresponds to a specific range of total scores.”
For purposes of deciding whether a nation could be categorized as a “dictatorship,” however, I focused only on the “political rights” scores, classifying nations with a political rights score of 6 or 7 as a dictatorship. This does not mean that civil liberties are unimportant, of course, but the objective here is to assess the degree of absolutism of the political leadership, not freedom of expression, press, etc. Of course, in the overwhelming majority of cases, nations with low political rights scores also have low civil liberties scores. However, a political rights score of 6 or 7 corresponds most closely with our definition of dictatorship, based on Freedom House’s characterization:
6 – Countries and territories with a rating of 6 have very restricted political rights. They are ruled by one-party or military dictatorships, religious hierarchies, or autocrats. They may allow a few political rights, such as some representation or autonomy for minority groups, and a few are traditional monarchies that tolerate political discussion and accept public petitions.
7 – Countries and territories with a rating of 7 have few or no political rights because of severe government oppression, sometimes in combination with civil war. They may also lack an authoritative and functioning central government and suffer from extreme violence or rule by regional warlords.
While it may be debatable whether it is appropriate to consider a country with no “functioning central government” as a dictatorship, I would submit that the label is appropriate if that nation is ruled de facto by warlords or rival armies or militias. In effect, that simply means that it is ruled by two or more dictators instead of one.
By Freedom House’s measure, then, there were 49 nation-states that could be fairly characterized as dictatorships in 2015, as follows:
Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Belarus, Brunei, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Congo-Kinshasa), Republic of the Congo (Congo-Brazzaville), Cuba, Djibouti, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Iran, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Laos, Libya, Mauritania, Myanmar, North Korea, Oman, Qatar, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkmenistan, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Yemen.
It should be noted that Freedom House included in its ratings several other entities with a political rights score of 6 or 7 whose status as an independent state was itself disputed:
Crimea, the Gaza Strip, Pakistani Kashmir, South Ossetia, Tibet, Transnistria, the West Bank and Western Sahara.
My count of 49 dictatorships in the world in 2015 excludes these subordinated or disputed state territories.
Step 2: Determine which of the world’s dictatorships received US-funded military or weapons training, military arms financing or authorized sales of military weapons from the United States in 2015.
For this step, I relied on four sources, the first two of which took considerable digging to locate:
This is the most recent annual report, required by section 656 of the Foreign Assistance Act (FAA) of 1961, as amended (22 U.S.C. § 2416), and section 652 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2008 (P.L. 110-161), which requires
“a report on all military training provided to foreign military personnel by the Department of Defense and the Department of State during the previous fiscal year and all such training proposed for the current fiscal year,” excluding NATO countries, Australia, New Zealand and Japan.
This report provides data on US expenditures for military training programs under the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program, Foreign Military Financing (FMF) grants, the International Military Education and Training (IMET) program, the Section 2282 Global Train and Equip (GT&E) program, the Aviation Leadership Program to provide pilot training (ALP), and the Foreign Assistance Act (FAA) drawdown program, which authorizes the president to direct the drawdown of defense articles, services and training if an “unforeseen emergency exists that requires immediate military assistance to a foreign country” that cannot be met by other means. Such expenditures are listed by recipient country, in some detail. For purposes of this study, I include expenditures under these programs as US-funded military training.
The report also provides data on US expenditures for narcotics and law enforcement, global peace operations, centers for security studies, drug interdiction and counter-drug activities, mine removal assistance, disaster response, non-lethal anti-terrorism training and other programs that I did not count as military assistance or training for purposes of this survey. It is certainly more than possible that US assistance under these programs could play a role in providing de facto military assistance to recipient countries, but I err on the side of caution.
The report describes the IMET program as including civilian participants, and including training on “elements of U.S. democracy such as the judicial system, legislative oversight, free speech, equality issues, and commitment to human rights.” One could conceivably criticize my inclusion of IMET training, therefore, on the ground that it actually trains foreign civilians and soldiers in democratic, anti-dictatorial values. However, the IMET program is presumably called “military” training and education for a reason. It trains students in “increased understanding of security issues and the means to address them,” and provides “training that augments the capabilities of participant nations’ military forces to support combined operations and interoperability with U.S. forces.” Accordingly, I think it is fair to count IMET as a form of military assistance, while acknowledging that it arguably might, at times, play a pro-democracy role.
Table 3a of this publication provides the actual fiscal year allocations for foreign assistance programs, by country and by account, including the two programs that interest us here, Foreign Military Financing and IMET. In that regard, it is somewhat duplicative of the previous source, but I reviewed it as a check.
This source provides the total dollar value of military articles and services sold to foreign governments for FY 2015, including the value of agreements for future deliveries and the value of actual deliveries, which I have provided in the table below. It also includes other data on foreign military financing (credit or grants) extended to foreign governments and provides yet another source on IMET training.
SIPRI provides an interactive tool by which the user can generate a list of major weapons transfers by supplier, all or some recipients, and the year. Although it only counts “major” conventional weapons transfers, I reviewed it as an additional check on the accuracy of the chart. It essentially affirmed the accuracy of the DSCA report but there were some possible anomalies. For example, the DSCA reports only $8,000 worth of military sales to Uganda in FY 2015 but SIPRI reports the transfer of 10 RG-33 armored vehicles, two Cessna-208 Caravan light transport planes, and 15 Cougar armored vehicles in 2015. The discrepancy may be due to the three-month difference between fiscal year 2015 and calendar year 2105, different methods of dating the transfer, differences in valuation or some unknown factor.
Step 3: Generate the Chart
The first column in the chart below lists the 49 countries classified by Freedom House as dictatorial in nature.
The second column shows those nations that received some US military training in FY 2015, relying primarily on source B, but also checking source C.
The third column shows those nations that received an agreement for future military sales or transfers from the United States in FY 2015, with the dollar value of the military articles listed, based on source C, but also checking source D.
The fourth column shows those nations that received an actual delivery of military articles from the United States in FY 2015, with the dollar value of the military articles listed, based on source C, but also checking source D.
I plan on providing similar reports on US support for dictatorships around the world on an annual basis. I will begin work on a report covering Fiscal Year 2016 as soon as the relevant data becomes available.
Rich Whitneyis an attorney, actor, radio commentator and disk jockey, Illinois Green Party activist and former Green Party candidate for governor.
Comment: Military sales of equipment and services represent a very lucrative business (see the chart for 2015 which represents ‘dictatorship’ remunerations only). Peace and minding US’ own business, in this sense, has no ‘value’.
There are mounting signals that Donald Trump’s much-delayed Middle East peace plan – billed as the “deal of the century” – is about to be unveiled.
Even though Trump’s officials have given away nothing publicly, the plan’s contours are already evident, according to analysts.
They note that Israel has already started implementing the deal – entrenching “apartheid” rule over Palestinians – while Washington has spent the past six months dragging its heels on publishing the document.
“Netanyahu has simply got on with deepening his hold on the West Bank and East Jerusalem – and he knows the Americans aren’t going to stand in his way,” said Michel Warschawski, an Israeli analyst and head of the Alternative Information Centre in Jerusalem.
“He will be given free rein to do what he likes, whether they publish the plan or, in the end, it never sees the light of day,” he told Middle East Eye.
Eran Etzion, a former Israeli foreign ministry official, agreed: “Israel has a much freer hand than it did in the past. It feels confident enough to continue its existing policies, knowing Trump won’t stand in the way.”
Netanyahu ‘the winner’
According to the latest reports, the Americans may present their plan within days, soon after the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
Yossi Alpher, a former aide to Ehud Barak during his premiership in the late 90s, said it was clear Netanyahu was being “kept in the loop” by Trump officials. He told MEE: “He is being apprised of what is coming. There won’t be any surprises for him.”
Analysts are agreed that Netanyahu will emerge the winner from any Trump initiative.
Yossi Beilin, a former Israeli politician who was a pivotal figure in the Oslo peace process of the early 90s, said Netanyahu would cynically manipulate the plan to his advantage.
“He knows the Palestinians will not accept the terms they are being offered,” he told MEE. “So he can appear reasonable and agree to it – even if there are things he is unhappy with – knowing that the Palestinians will reject it and then be blamed for its failure.”
Alpher agreed. “If the plan is rejected, Trump will say he did his best, he offered the parties the greatest deal ever, and that they must now be left to settle the issues on their own.”
He added that the only obstacle to Washington presenting the plan were fears about Abbas’s waning health. Trump’s team might then prefer to shelve it.
Even then, he said, Netanyahu would profit.
“He can then continue with what he’s been doing for the past 10 years. He will expand the settlements, and suppress the rights of Israelis who oppose him. He will move Israel towards a situation of apartheid.”
Fragments of land
In an early effort to win Trump’s favour, reported by MEE a year ago, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas proposed a land swap ceding 6.5 percent of the occupied territories to Israel. That was more than three times what had been accepted by the Palestinians in previous peace talks.
But the Palestinians appear to have lost the battle and are now braced for the worst. Abbas has derided the plan as “the slap of the century”, and has said he will not commit “treason” by agreeing to it.
According to Palestinian officials, they are likely to be offered provisional borders over fragments of land comprising about half the occupied territories – or just 11 percent of what was recognised as Palestine under the British mandate.
The Palestinian areas would be demilitarised, and Israel would have control over the borders and airspace.
Israel and the Palestinians would then be left to “negotiate” over the status of Israel’s illegal settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, with Trump likely to back Netanyahu to the hilt, according to the analysts.
It is widely assumed that the Americans have rejected any principle of a right of return for Palestinian refugees, either to Israel or to the areas of the occupied territories that Israel wins US approval to seize.
Gaza and Golan windfalls
The US embassy’s move to Jerusalem last month appears to signal that the Trump administration will recognise all of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. That would deny Palestinians East Jerusalem, long assumed to be the capital of any future Palestinian state.
And separate reports this month suggest that the announcement of the peace plan may be timed to coincide with new measures for Gaza and the Golan Heights. There have been rumours for several years that Washington and Israel have been pressuring Cairo to let Palestinians in Gaza settle in Sinai.
According to Israeli reports, Washington may be close to unveiling a scheme that would weaken the border between Gaza and Egypt, and allow Palestinians to work and maybe live in northern Sinai.
The aim would be to gradually shift responsibility for the enclave away from Israel on to Egypt and further undermine prospects for a Palestinian state in historic Palestine.
And in a separate move that would complete Netanyahu’s windfall, an Israeli government minister claimed late last month that the Trump administration may be ready to recognise Israeli sovereignty over the Golan.
The Heights were seized by Israel from Syria during the 1967 war and annexed in violation of international law in 1981.
No longer ‘occupied’
A Jerusalem Post report last month suggested that the White House document would be unlikely to include a commitment to a “two-state solution”, reflecting previous comments from Trump.
That would free Israel’s hand to seize areas of the West Bank it has colonised with its ever-expanding settlements.
Noticeably, the latest annual report from the US State Department on the human rights situation by country, published in April, drops for the first time the term “occupied Palestinian territories”, implying that the Trump team no longer views much of the West Bank as under occupation.
Netanyahu told a recent meeting of his Likud faction: “Our successes are still to come. Our policies are not based on weakness. They are not based on concessions that will endanger us.”
So given Israel’s recent moves, what can we infer about the likely terms of Trump’s peace plan?
1. Gerrymandering Jerusalem
The most sensitive of the final-status issues is Jerusalem, which includes the incendiary Muslim holy site of al-Aqsa. Trump appears to have effectively recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital by relocating the US embassy there last month.
The embassy move is likely to be interpreted by Netanyahu as a retroactive seal of approval from the US for a series of Israeli measures over recent months designed to engineer a Greater Jewish Jerusalem.
The main thrust are two legislative proposals to gerrymander the city’s boundaries and its population to create an unassailable Jewish majority. Both have been put on hold by Netanyahu until the announcement of the peace plan.
The first – called the Greater Jerusalem Bill – is intended to annex several large Jewish settlements close by in the occupied West Bank to the Jerusalem municipality. Overnight that would transform some 150,000 West Bank settlers into Jerusalem residents, as well as effectively annexing their lands to Israel.
In a sign of the impatience of members of Netanyahu’s cabinet to press on with such a move, the bill is due to come up for consideration again on Sunday.
A separate bill would strip residency in the city from some 100,000 Palestinians who are on the “wrong side” of a wall Israel began building through Jerusalem 15 years ago. Those Palestinians will be all but barred from Jerusalem and assigned to a separate council.
In addition, Israel has intensified harsh measures against Palestinians still inside East Jerusalem, including night arrests, house demolitions, the closing down of businesses, the creation of “national parks” in Palestinian neighbourhoods, and the denial of basic services. The barely veiled aim is to encourage residents to relocate outside the wall.
Experts have noted too that Palestinian schools inside the wall are being pressured to adopt the Israeli curriculum to erode a Palestinian identity among pupils.
2. Abu Dis: a Palestinian capital?
With Jerusalem as Israel’s exclusive capital, Trump’s team is reported to be seeking a face-saving alternative location for a future Palestinian “capital” outside Jerusalem’s municipal borders.
According to rumours, they have selected the town of Abu Dis, 4km east of Jerusalem and cut off from the city by Israel’s wall more than a decade ago.
The Abu Dis plan is not new. At the end of the 90s, the US administration of Bill Clinton proposed renaming Abu Dis “al-Quds” – Arabic for “the Holy”, the traditional name of Jerusalem because of its holy places. That was seen as a prelude to designating it the future capital of a Palestinian state.
Reports about the elevation of Abu Dis in the new peace plan have been circulating since late last year. In January, Abbas rejected the idea outright.
Only last month Yair Lapid, leader of Israel’s centre-right Yesh Atid party, highlighted reports about the imminent change of Abu Dis’s status in comments directed at Netanyahu.
Abu Dis is a densely populated village home to 13,000 Palestinians. In practice, it is all but impossible to imagine how it could function meaningfully as the capital of a Palestinian state – something that makes it an attractive proposition for most of Netanyahu’s coalition.
Currently, most of Abu Dis’s lands are under Israeli control, and it is hemmed in by the wall and Jewish settlements, including the 40,000 inhabitants of Maale Adumim.
Meanwhile, Israel has been tightly restricting access to the site for most Palestinians. There have been long-standing Palestinian fears that Israel is seeking to engineer a situation where it can impose its sovereignty over the mosque.
David Friedman, Trump’s ambassador to Israel and a benefactor to the settlements, only heightened such fears last month when he was pictured apparently accepting a photo doctored by religious settlers that showed al-Aqsa mosque replaced by a new Jewish temple.
4. Jordan Valley
Under the Oslo accords, some 62 percent of the occupied West Bank was classified as Area C, under temporary Israeli control. It includes much of the Palestinians’ best agricultural land and would be the heartland of any future Palestinian state.
Israel never carried out the withdrawals from Area C intended in the Oslo process. Instead, it has been accelerating the expansion of illegal Jewish settlements there, and making life as hard as possible for Palestinians to force them into the confines of the more densely populated Areas A and B.
The Trump plan is reported to offer recognition of provisional Palestinian borders on about half of the West Bank – effectively awarding most of Area C to Israel. Much of that land will be in the Jordan Valley, the long spine of the West Bank that Israel has been colonising for decades.
Last December, as the Trump plan took shape, Israel announced a massive programme of settlement expansion in the Jordan Valley, designed to more than double the settler population there. Three new settlements will be the first to be built in the valley in nearly 30 years.
At the same time, Israel has lately been intensifying the harassment of the ever-shrinking Palestinian population in the Jordan Valley, as well as other parts of Area C.
In addition to denying Palestinians access to 85 percent of the Valley, Israel has declared military firing zones over nearly half of the area. That has justified the regular eviction of families on the pretext of ensuring their safety.
Israel has been speeding up efforts to expand the settlements in other parts of Area C. On 30 May, it announced nearly 2,000 new homes, the great majority of them in isolated settlements that it was previously assumed would be dismantled in any peace deal.
Additionally, Israel has been quietly preparing to “legalise” what are termed “outposts” – settlements, usually built on private Palestinian land, that violate a “no new settlements” agreement with the US dating from the 90s.
At the same time, Israel has been destroying Palestinian communities in Area C, especially those that stand in the way of efforts to create territorial continuity between large settlements in the West Bank and Jerusalem.
Late last month, France objected after Israel’s supreme court approved a plan to demolish the Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar, next to Maale Adumim. The families are supposed to be moved to a garbage dump in Abu Dis.
The French statement warned that Israeli actions were threatening “a zone of strategic importance to the two-state solution and the contiguity of a future Palestinian state”.
In its place, it was recently revealed, Israel is planning to build a new settlement neighbourhood called Nofei Bereishit.
In another sign of mounting international concern, some 70 Democratic members of the US Congress appealed last month to Netanyahu to stop the destruction of the Palestinian community of Sussiya, between the Gush Etzion settlements and Jerusalem.
US lawmakers expressed concern that the move was designed to “jeopardise the prospects for a two-state solution”.
6. Gaza and Sinai
It is becoming hard for the Trump administration and Israel to ignore the unfolding humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza – one Israel helped to engineer with an 11-year blockade and intermittent military attacks. The United Nations warned some time ago that Gaza would soon be “uninhabitable”.
Seeking a solution, the White House hosted 19 countries at a meeting in March to consider the situation in Gaza. The PA boycotted the meeting.
At the time, Arab media reported that the Trump peace plan might include a commitment from Egypt to free up northern Sinai for a future Palestinian state. According to a Hamas official, Cairo offered reassurances that it was opposed to “settling Palestinians in Sinai”.
But a report in Haaretz has revived concerns that the White House may try to achieve a similar end by other means, by launching a Gaza initiative to coincide with the peace plan.
The paper noted that the Trump team had picked up proposals from an Israeli general, Yoav Mordechai, who participated in the White House meeting in March.
A reported initial stage would see Palestinians from Gaza recruited to work on $1.5bn worth of long-term projects in northern Sinai, funded by the international community. The projects would include an industrial zone, a desalination plant and a power station.
Egyptian opposition to such an initiative is reported to be weakening, presumably in the face of strenuous pressure from Washington and Arab allies.
The Palestinians are doing their best to try to halt the peace plan in its tracks. They are currently boycotting the Trump administration to show their displeasure.
Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki called last month on Arab states to recall their ambassadors from the United States in protest.
And an emergency meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation has proposed that an international peacekeeping force, modelled those used in Bosnia and Kosovo in the 90s, be deployed to protect Palestinians.
In another sign of anger at the Trump initiative, the Palestinians defied the US by submitting a referral for the International Criminal Court at the Hague to investigate Israel for war crimes last month.
Etzion, the former Israeli foreign ministry official, however, warned that a turning point could be on the horizon.
“A Palestinian implosion is coming and that could change the situation in unexpected ways,” he told MEE. “The question is which implosion comes first: the humanitarian catastrophe about to engulf Gaza, or the political vacuum created when Abbas leaves.”
Nonetheless, the Palestinians are facing huge pressure to give in to the peace plan.
The Trump administration has already cut funding to the UN refugee agency, UNRWA, which cares for more than two million refugees in the occupied territories. It is also poised to pull more than $200m of funding to the Palestinian Authority this summer.
Trump has also sought to recruit the Arab states to lean on Abbas. According to reports, the Palestinian leader was presented with a 35-page document originating from the Americans when he visited Saudi Arabia last November, and told to accept it or resign.
In recent years the Saudis have increased their aid to the Palestinian Authority, giving them greater leverage over the Palestinian leader.
In exchange for the Arab states acceding to Trump’s plan, Washington appears to be rolling out a more draconian policy towards Iran to limit its influence in the region.
The Arab states understand that they need to first defuse the Palestinian issue before they can be seen to coordinate closely with Israel and the US in dealing with Tehran.
Kurt Schlichter Townhall Thu, 14 Jun 2018 02:04 UTC
I guess I should just be quiet and let the liberal establishment continue to attack President Trump for refusing to submit to the demands of a bunch of foreigners. As Napoleon warned, perhaps apocryphally but accurately, never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake. And it is crazy to think that the American people are going to punish a president who sides with them over that schnitzel-snarfing frau, Monsieur les Eyebrows, and the rest of the globalist twits.
Oh, and let’s not even get started on how they can’t help but manufacture reasons why Trump shouldn’t take a chance on avoiding a war that would lead to thousands of Normal American families burying sons and daughters. Yeah, shaking Rocket Man’s hand is pretty much Munich 2: The EnNorkening.
But I shouldn’t complain. It’s getting so the elite needs to register their activities as in-kind contributions to the Trump 2020 campaign.
Who thinks Normal Americans will be mad about Trump fulminating over how we are putting our cash and our blood on the line against Putin for the Europeans and they won’t even meet the piddly 2% defense spending level they promised? One of the elite’s favorite fallbacks is that demanding our allies carry their own rucksacks for once is totally playing into Vlad’s hands. How? Reasons. And because.
Putin is the all-purpose boogie man now, though the transnational liberal elite was perfectly happy to suck up to him until he became more useful as a pumped-up threat than as a cash cow. A half mil for a speech? Seems legit. Uranium One, anybody? Cool. Weird how the fussbudgets who were AWOL during the real Cold War don’t seem upset about that stuff, only about stuff that involves taking America’s side.
Who does the elite side with?
I say we should side with ourselves. So does the president.
I keep asking the establishment shills why America has some moral obligation to tolerate foreign countries imposing higher tariffs upon us than we impose upon them. Seems facially unfair, right? So, there’s got to be a really good reason because how can you support our working people facing a higher obstacle to trade than the foreigners do? I’m just wondering what’s wrong with a level playing field. Fair is fair, right? But I never get a good answer.
Oh, I do get responses. Most of them are weakly snarky tweets informing me that I don’t know anything about economics. The rest are a smorgasbord of puny personal attacks. But no one can seem to tell me why we have some sort of moral duty to engage in trade relationships with other countries that are not precisely equal. Maybe I am an idiot like they say, but calling me one doesn’t answer the question.
I don’t like tariffs. I like free trade. But in what world is free trade free when we are only free to face higher tariffs than our competitor countries? Apparently, in the world of the liberal transnational globalist elite. They are citizens of the world, you know.
I’m a citizen of the United States. How about you?
And I thought collusion with foreign leaders to influence American policy was wrong. Yet all I see are liberals, their Fredocon travelers, and their media minions commiserating with outsiders, with foreigners, against the guy who Normal Americans elected as the president. Collusion, if you will, to change American policy to what foreigners want. Gosh, it’s almost as if all this talk about collusion was a bunch of baloney from the word go.
Actually, the elite doesn’t think they are really colluding with outsiders. They are colluding with insiders, their real constituency, the like-minded elites across the globe. They don’t represent the United States. They don’t care about the United States. And they don’t care about the people of the United States. That is not whose interests they are seeking to protect.
When your job gets shipped to Oaxaca so somebody who looks like Mitt Romney can import the products you used to make back into the USA, don’t look to the elite to care. Care? They’ll applaud.
They are seeking to ensure their own gravy train doesn’t get derailed. This is why they tell you, in between informing you how stupid you are, that there are only a few tariffs out there and they don’t matter. Well, they sure as heck don’t matter to these think tank jockeys and media scribblers. They are not the guys getting up at 4 a.m. to milk the cows or to harvest the soybeans the tariffs target. They’ve never worked on a vehicle assembly line in their lives, so what’s it matter to them if Germany’s tariff on US cars is four times ours to theirs? Of course, the tariffs on US products don’t matter to the elite. They aren’t the guys who lose their jobs when their company picks up and moves to Vietnam.
I don’t like tariffs. I’d tear them all down, everywhere, just like Trump proposed. But the elite isn’t for that. It’s only against tariffs we impose to retaliate for the tariffs the foreigners impose.
And the elite are now apparently against peace talks, but they aren’t the ones who would fight the war Donald Trump is trying to prevent in North Korea. Turns out peace talks have been terrible since January 2017. Who knew?
Donald Trump is a disruptor. He is disrupting the fat, arrogant, and corrupt elite and the web of self-dealing it has spun over the last seven decades. Is Trump putting at risk everything that’s been built in the last 70 years? I sure hope so. Because the system that was built over the last 70 years is no longer working for all of us. It’s working really well for a few of us, but that’s just not enough anymore.
We’re woke. We’re militant. And the tan, tweeting reckoning that is Donald Trump is at hand.
Kurt Schlichter (Twitter: @KurtSchlichter) was personally recruited to write conservative commentary by Andrew Breitbart. He is a successful Los Angeles trial lawyer, a veteran with a masters in Strategic Studies from the United States Army War College, and a former stand-up comic.
by Leo del Grosso for the Latin American Saker blog
translated from the original Spanish by Ana for the Saker blog
On May 5, the following statement was distributed to the public opinion in Buenos Aires, Argentina: “The DAIA, Delegation of Argentine Israelite Associations, reports that its Board of Directors has requested the resignation of its president, Ariel Cohen Sabban, due to facts of public knowledge. The 1st Vice-president, Dr. Alberto Indij, will assume the presidency of the entity “. Signature: Board of Directors of DAIA.
What are these facts of “public knowledge”? An attempt of extortion and sexual abuse, in the best style of the Anglo-American Harvey Weinstein, against the daughter of the editor of the newspaper La Nación, Esmeralda Miter. The newspaper La Nación is a traditional member of the well-known “prostitute press”, which acts as a bishop of the Anglo-Saxon Empire interests and, obviously, has been part of the main supporters, together with Clarín and Infobae, of the Mauricio Macri’s sepoy government. It happened that Esmeralda Miter, a “good girl”, macrist (for Macri supporter, NdT), on her way of becoming a ” TV star”, made some statements questioning the number of Jews executed by the Nazi regime. Textually, she said: “It’s like what happened with the Holocaust, they said it was 6 million but maybe it was not so many”. Unlike her ex-husband, former macrista official Darío Lopérfido, who was immediately summoned by the Inquisition Court of Holocaust Church *Merchants of the Temple*, aka the DAIA, so that he could retract as soon as he questioned the number of missing people during Videla’s sepoy and vendetta dictatorship. The squeeze, because that’s what the meeting behind closed doors was about between Esmeralda Miter and the DAIA, lasted for an hour and a half and, according to her own statements she sat on the bench of the accused, and it was “very hard.” Afterwards, as reported by a TV show, the level of disorientation of Miter Esmeralda was remarkable: it was evident that she repeated, over and ovevr, the script that was forced on her by the inquisitors. But this was not nearly all: the president of the DAIA at that time (mid April), Ariel Cohen Sabban, veteran satyr always alert to abuse women, saw in Esmeralda Miter, who was recently separated from Lopérfido, a vulnerable prey he could extort economically and abuse sexually. This is how he asked Esmeralda for a private meeting, in her apartment, in order to “comfort her”.
Here is what Miter denounced to have happened during that meeting: ”He touched my chest and he wanted to kiss me.” First in the neck and then on the mouth, so I just run away and eluded him. Then I stood up from the armchair and told him he should leave, because I had another meeting agreed in my house too “. Later on, she added: “The situation had become violent and at some point he said ‘stay calm, that I’m not going to catch you.’ A very unpleasant situation.” But the worst thing of all is not this eschatological situation, but how it is evident that the Zionists trade with the victims of the Nazi regime: “He told me that as payback for the damage of my statements I had to travel to Germany with 10 or 12 students to go visit concentration camps and additionally visit the Holocaust Museum. He said it would cost me about 80 thousand dollars to which I replied that I did not have that money. He then replied that I could pay in installments “. I have transcripted the statements of Esmeralda Miter literally because they are irreplaceably and illustrative of the level of indignity and vileness exercised by these “temple merchants”, the Anglo-Saxons, not only in Argentina, but throughout the world, since their modus operandi is always and everywhere the same.
This decadent saga shows the rottenness of an institution that is holder of the Jewish Argentine Appeal described as follows by former executive director of the DAIA, Jorge Elbaum: “the descending paths do not express themselves only in scandalous cases (such as the Cohen Sabbán) in which a pretended Alpha male takes advantage of the vulnerability of a woman who comes from being subjected to public derision as a result of her ignorance and oligarchic training. This marks the make-up and farsighted continuity of an institution that claims to be what it is not (representative of Argentine-Jews), which claims to do what it does not do (fight against all forms of discrimination) and claims to be apolitical when it is a clear boxcar of tail (sometimes locomotive) of the current version of the Argentine right, the PRO “.
But Elbaum falls short and Santiago Cúneo – who also has, same as Elbaum as former executive director of the DAIA, a past with spots he cannot be proud of (i.e. Cuneo was intimately related to Menem, , for business reasons and propagandizes the unprovable hypothesis that Nisman was assassinated, he also called to vote for Macri and recently participated in defamation against North Korea, among other reprehensible performances) – puts things in place by drawing attention to the members of the DAIA as agents of a foreign State such as the Racist State of Israel. Basically, saying “Argentinian right” or “agents of foreign governments”, comes to be the same, in practice. Or, can anyone deny that the Argentinian right has always been the executor, beyond patriotic words, of policies for the benefit of imperialism? But, what comes to be the same in practice, does not exactly mean the same, as it is much clearer and stronger what Cúneo is saying than what Elbaum said: those who are part of DAIA, like everyone in Macri’s government, are agents of an occupation government, of a government totally at the service of other States, for the destruction of Argentinian Nation. That is true, appropriate and essential to say, because it marks the true terms of the main contradiction faced by Argentinians today.
And these foreign agents, forced to face Santiago Cúneo’s correctly incendiary diatribes (in a language often coarse but not deceptive for that matter) have acted as they have been acting with everyone: with tightening, with extortion, with threat, in the same way that the directive council of the DAIA did against Esmeralda Miter, who is a macrista, just like they are and who, in addition, in its eagerness to ingratiate herself with these swine torturers, reached the pathetic point of overacting by saying: “In my opinion, the Jewish community is superior and I wish these were my origins “. This is how the DAIA, a few days after being well represented by the satyr Cohen Sabban (who was asked to resign only to save face), announces that he will initiate criminal proceedings against Santiago Cúneo, whom they obviously accuse of anti-Semitism (what else?) and of pursue of demonizing the Racist State of Israel (as if at all necessary to “demonize”, and as if their diabolical crimes were not already disclosed by themselves), of associating Jews with money and imperialist intentions (Israel , its tentacles like DAIA in Argentina and men as “Satyr” Sabban are the worst possible advertising for Jews – more information on Cohen Sabban and DAIA in this link), of reinstating the denunciation of the “Andinia Plan “(a plan for Anglo-Israeli colonization of whole Patagonia, part of which is proven that the Racist State of Israel pays vacation is Patagonia to its soldiers after they finish military service), of accusing double loyalty in the case of bombings of AMIA premises (DAIA and AMIA always acted as cover-up for the perpetrators of the attacks against the Israeli embassy and against the DAIA-AMIA building, a cover-up denounced by all associations of relatives of the victims of the attacks and the legal cases in which the former directors of the DAIA, such as Rubén Beraja, financial delinquent who bankrupted Banco Mayo and defrauded all its depositors) are completely ingrate and of “impairment of the dignity of an entire community”.
To DAIA, it is not the behavior of Israel what generates hatred against Jews. To DAIA, not the proceeding of Macri, a pawn of the Anglo-Saxon Empire and agent of international usury who has among his most prominent bankers many Jews, are what generates hatred against Jews. To DAIA, it is not the behavior of the DAIA and AMIA members themselves what generate hatred against Jew, although both were masqueraders of massacres against Argentines largely belonging to the “community” (“and what disguise will we use if the judge checks that they have nothing to do?” asked a few years ago a frightened Guillermo Borger, acting president of the AMIA at that time, to Héctor Timerman, former chancellor of Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, facing the perspective that out of the memorandum signed between Argentina and Iran it was demonstrated that the Persian nation had nothing what to do with the attacks in Buenos Aires).
Of course, all honest and well-intentioned people are not to make easy generalizations, nor are they indifferent to punishing innocents instead of true culprits. The DAIA and Macri and the IMF, because they are all part of the same conspiracy, constitute an occupation government that seeks to subject the Argentines to imperialist domination, to tear the country apart and plunder its immense natural resources (Islas Malvinas, Atlántico Sur, Patagonia, Guaraní Aquifer , Antarctica Argentina, etc.), all of which Santiago Cúneo argues very well, an occupation government that does not care about Argentines, Jews, or Esmeralda Miter, or anyone else; an occupation government with a war plan that has to come into execution.
And because of saying this, with clarity, with reasoning, with irrefutable arguments, and also with anger, the anger of those who have totally lost patience, that Santiago Cuneo today is being threatened by DAIA, and that Santiago Cuneo had to leave his program in Crónica TV and has had to start transmitting from his own channel on the web, in order to continue expressing himself, running the same fate also ran by journalists like Roberto Navarro, Víctor Hugo Morales, and many more. But the world is getting tired of Anglo-Saxon supramacists: more and more are joining against them, as was seen in Buenos Aires with the one million people who, on May 25th, attended the politico-cultural act of vindication of the May Revolution under the slogan “the Homeland is in danger, not the IMF.” They were present there, from Jorge Elbaum to Santiago Cúneo, from the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo to the general secretaries of several workers’ union organizations that are preparing a general strike, from the youngest without work to the retired ones that do not have enough to pay for their medicines. It is true. Argentina is in danger. Anglos are attacking her with the tactic of the trojan horse, hiding behind any mask, be it religious, cultural, or pseudo-nationalist. Unmasking them is fundamental. This is what Cúneo did in an absolutely frontal and raw way and that is why, beyond differences or coincidences, he deserves decided solidarity.
Here is the original video in Spanish: (alas, no English subtitles available, sorry!)
Afterword by The Saker: Santiago Cúneo’s case is very interesting because I strongly believe that cases like this one will happen again and again and in other countries. The reason for that is simple: the infinite arrogance of the pro-Israeli lobbies is truly pissing people off who eventually don’t care and simply blow up in anger against this arrogance. Think of it this way: the Israeli propaganda machine is engaged in truly herculean efforts to make everybody cheer Israel or silence them by by hook or by crook. We see that in every western country for sure, and in many others too. Just check out this completely Orwellian story from Myanmar: https://www.rt.com/news/428267-israel-myanmar-education-antisemitism/. Of course, in their hubris and arrogance the Zionists completely failed to realize that they provoke the exact opposite effect: eventually people, especially those capable of critical thinking, begin loathing Israel and Zionism, and then the latter appeal to “anti-Semitism” or the “Holocaust” they just make everybody even more angry.
For all their external successes, I think that the Israelis and their Zionist supporters are already losing the battle due to their arrogance and total inability to understand the human nature. The only question is, as always, the violence and horrors they will inflict on the world before their inevitable downfall.
But in the meantime, heed my words, other “Santiago Cúneo” will pop-up in other countries, like mushrooms after the rain.
Israeli television recently aired a video of two Israeli soldiers filming themselves in the act of shooting a Palestinian protester at the Gaza boundary while cheering. Filming one’s own crimes against humanity – shooting Palestinians for sport – suggests a sense of security in never being held accountable.
Even more evidence of this impunity is apparent in Rise and Kill First: The Secret History of Israel’s Targeted Assassinations by veteran Israeli journalist Ronen Bergman, staff writer for The New York Times Magazine.
Prosecutors at the International Criminal Court might want to consider this book Exhibit A if Israeli government and military officials are ever indicted for war crimes. It contains open admissions of guilt in plotting and executing extralegal assassinations in violation of international law.
“Since World War II, Israel has assassinated more people than any other country in the Western world,” Bergman writes. In many cases, these so-called targeted killings over the last two decades also involved the deaths of nearly a thousand bystanders, according to Bergman’s calculations – those numbers, however, fail to include the tens of thousands killed in overt acts of war and collective punishment that mostly go unmentioned in this book.
That Israeli officials were willing to be quoted and identify others by name implies a certainty of never being held accountable in a court of law. Consider, for example, the instruction given by former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to Avi Dichter, at that time Shin Bet’s director, in reference to Hamas. Sharon, in an open admission of intent to commit genocide, stated: “Go for it. Kill them all.”
It was not just assassinations. Bergman writes, “‘state security’ was used to justify a large number of actions and operations that, in the visible world, would have been subject to criminal prosecution and long prison terms: constant surveillance of citizens because of their ethnic or political affiliations; interrogation methods that included prolonged detention without judicial sanction, and torture; perjury in the courts and concealment of the truth from counsel and judges.”
Rise and Kill First details the lengthy history of Israeli political assassination, dating back to British Mandate Palestine. It includes the period of the so-called Border Wars (a term used by historian Benny Morris in his book Israel’s Border Wars, 1949-1956), the formation of the Palestine Liberation Organization in the 1960s, the Israeli invasion and occupation of Lebanon in the 1970s, the first and second intifadas in the occupied territories beginning in the 1980s and the ongoing military campaigns against Hizballah, Syria and Iran (the so-called Radical Front) that continue today.
As the decades went on, assassinations became increasingly frequent, in part due to improved surveillance through drones and computer technology, enabling intelligence agencies to carry out hundreds of operations per year as opposed to only a few previously.
The book’s title derives from the Talmudic command that a person has the right to “rise and kill first” as a preemptive measure.
This concept formed both the moral and legal basis for the policy, which many human rights groups consider invalid under international law because execution without trial makes a mockery of due process and erases the distinction between combatants and civilians. Many of the victims were political and even religious figures who were most likely not involved in planning attacks against Israel, Bergman asserts.
The Haganah – the paramilitary precursor to the Israeli army – defined assassinations as “personal terror operations,” targeting leaders of the Palestinian national movement. After 1948 all of Israel’s intelligence agencies, including the military intelligence department Aman, the Mossad and Shin Bet, became involved in extralegal killings.
The assassination policy allowed for the murders of Palestinians and other Arabs simply because they were part of the resistance against Israeli settler colonialism.
The people killed to avenge the holding of hostages and deaths of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Summer Olympic Games in Munich, for example, indicate that Israeli intelligence simply picked out leaders or representatives of the Palestine Liberation Organization, not those directly involved in the Black September group that planned the abduction. Palestinian Wael Zuaiter, who was translating One Thousand and One Nights from Arabic to Italian while living in Rome and serving as a local PLO representative, was one of the murder victims, as was a misidentified Moroccan waiter living in Lillehammer, Norway.
That a racist code existed is undeniable, particularly given the distinction Israeli intelligence officials often made between “collateral damage” involving Arabs and non-Arabs: If Arab bystanders or family members might be killed, the operation was still likely to be given the go-ahead; if non-Arab bystanders might die, it was to be avoided. As Bergman notes, “as long as the targets were located in enemy countries, and as long as the innocent civilians were Arabs, the finger on the trigger became quicker.”
Israeli government and intelligence officials even planned the downing of commercial airliners in the hope of assassinating leading PLO officials. Although the plan was never implemented, Israeli officials developed an elaborate scheme to shoot down such aircraft in radar-free zones over the Mediterranean Sea so that discovery of the wreckage would be more difficult and the crime conceivably concealed.
News accounts seized on a separate incident detailed by Bergman in which the planned downing of an aircraft believed to be carrying PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat was narrowly averted in 1982. The plane was carrying wounded Palestinian children, and Arafat was not aboard.
Missing the point
Many of Bergman’s revelations are so shocking that one wonders why an apparently loyal Israeli journalist would expose them. But he is hardly the first reporter to venture into the realm of exposing the secrets of intelligence agencies, even if they tarnish the state’s carefully cultivated image.
The rationale is usually that the documented crimes represent “mistakes” that the exposé hopefully corrects without fundamentally challenging the nature of the state that carries them out. This journalistic genre largely misses the point. Intelligence agencies are not gatherers of information to protect state security, but are rather covert actors engaged in implementing the state’s hegemonic ambitions by any means necessary.
Intelligence agencies protect their secrets. It’s the rare journalist who can ferret them out by diligent investigation.
Most often, intelligence or government officials themselves leak secrets because of policy disagreements, splits within ruling factions or political ambitions. Bergman acknowledges this fact and makes it obvious that his principal source was the late Meir Dagan, an army general who became head of the Mossad under Israeli prime ministers Ariel Sharon, Ehud Olmert and Benjamin Netanyahu.
Unfortunately, Bergman is little more than a transcriber, bringing minimal analysis or historical background. For example, Dagan’s covert program to assassinate Iranian nuclear scientists is cited as a better method than overt military action to halt Iran’s alleged nuclear weapons program. The diplomatic negotiations that resulted in an international agreement and a rigorous inspections regime for Iran’s nuclear program are simply ignored.
The book has numerous other failings as well, including giving short shrift to the efforts of Israeli human rights organizations to halt extrajudicial killings and framing the Israeli narrative in a way that omits the numerous acts of collective punishment carried out against the Palestinian people since 1948. The words “collective punishment” appear only once in its 784 pages in reference to a home demolition.
Omitted are references to Deir Yassin and the dozens of other massacres that occurred during the Nakba of 1948-49, the massacre at Khan Younis in 1956, the numerous military provocations Israel carried out in Syria’s Golan Heights prior to the 1967 war and Israel’s flagrant violations of the ceasefires with Hamas in Gaza in 2008, 2012 and 2014 that resulted in the deaths of thousands, including children.
Rendition and torture
To his credit, however, Bergman does delineate the similarities between the Israeli and US intelligence agencies, including recruiting journalists as spies, setting up false-front organizations to interfere in other countries, working with ex-Nazis and helping identify left-wing political activists under authoritarian regimes for the purpose of having them tortured or murdered.
Aman’s Unit 504, which engaged in kidnappings, anticipated the CIA’s rendition and torture program following the 11 September 2001 attacks. And Bergman makes it clear that both former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley under President George W. Bush approved and supported the Israeli assassination policy.
Ultimately, the belief in the effectiveness of extrajudicial executions rests on the idea that individuals, not social forces, make history: Eliminate a single person and history is changed. Following the killing of a Hizballah leader, Bergman reports that some in Israeli intelligence came to recognize that “Hizballah wasn’t one-man’s guerrilla force – it was a movement … a legitimate grassroots social movement.”
Bergman makes the dramatic claim that Israel’s intelligence agencies, having come to realize the futility of an assassination policy against Palestinian resistance, embrace the two-state solution, leaving them at odds (though “quietly”) with the current Netanyahu government. Dagan, in particular, appeared to have been motivated to leak some of Israel’s most damaging secrets due to a rift with Netanyahu over his opposition to a Palestinian state.
The likelihood of an eventual binational state if the two-state solution failed was an outcome that Dagan feared more than anything. In one of his last remarks at an Israeli political rally, Dagan explained his worries: “I do not want a binational state. I do not want an apartheid state. I do not want to rule over three million Arabs. I do not want us to be hostages of fear, despair and deadlock.”
After reading Rise and Kill First, one wonders: Had Dagan lived, would he have ordered the assassinations of those advocating a binational democratic state?
Rod Such is a former editor for World Book and Encarta encyclopedias. He lives in Portland, Oregon, and is active with the Occupation-Free Portland campaign.
Renowned historians agree that besides other causes, major cause of the French Revolution of 1789 was the class distinction between the privileged and the unprivileged, which rapidly increased under the reign of King Louis XVI who had continued the policy of taking out international loans, and the debt drove the country to near bankruptcy, leading to the Revolution.
They opine, “The French Revolution began because the people of France wanted to end the monarchy and aristocracy…The people signed the Declaration of the Rights of Man, which declared that all estates are equal…all men are born equal under the law…the Revolution cherished the genuine aspirations of people such as liberty, equality and justice, which became the inspiration of people not only in France, but also in Europe and from there to the whole world.”
But, this enthusiasm died, when France witnessed the era of Reign of Terror from September 1793 to July 1794. The Reign of Terror was essentially created by the radical leader of the revolution Maximilien de Robespierre.
According to a researcher, “The guillotine became the preferred method of executions and became known as “The National Razor. Joseph Guillotine, a doctor, suggested its use for all executions, because it was a quick, painless death…The device was a large timber frame with a space at the bottom for the neck of the prisoner. At the top of the machine is a large angled blade. Once the prisoner is secured, the blade is dropped, severing the head and bringing about immediate death.”
During the Reign of Terror, the revolutionaries executed many high ranking members of France’s elite class through the guillotine, which also included King Louis XVI, his wife Marie Antoinette, Louis Philippe II, Madame Roland, and the Girondins.
The Reign of Terror was controlled by the Committee of Public Safety-the Jacobins. Robespierre ran the country and got an army of 800,000. It was the biggest army ever in Europe, up to that time. Researchers say, “Between 20,000 and 40,000 people were executed. At their trials, they could not speak in their own defense. The victims were clergy, aristocracy, and common people. Anyone who disagreed with the Jacobins was a threat to the Republic.”
Robespierre even executed some of his fellow leaders like Danton and others who were beheaded in 1794. The Reign of Terror ended when several of the main instigators, including Robespierre and Saint-Just, were beheaded. However, the French Revolution had started to murder itself.
Regarding the Reign of Terror, David Thomsan writes, “The Terror was not an instrument of class war, and 70 percent of its victims belonged to the peasantry and laboring classes.”
According to Indian historian, V. D. Mahajin, “The Reign of Terror has been described as martial law gone mad…On 10 November , Madam Roland was executed. When she mounted to the scaffold, she exclaimed: Liberty! What crimes are committed in thy name!”
By taking advantage of the Reign of Terror and unrest in the country, Napoleon Bonaparte, the French General seized the power through a coup and became head of the government as the First Consul. He later proclaimed himself Emperor of France. Quite opposite to the ideas of the French Revolution, Napoleon ruled over France by establishing a dictatorship, a monarchy and an aristocracy. He also militarized France and engaged the country in several wars.
If we take cognizance of the bloody aftermath of the French Revolution, we need to know that in the modern era, the Khazarian Mafia has also gone mad and follows the French Revolution’s Reign of Terror in its worst form. This Mafia has refined the tactics of the guillotine and tortured to deaths millions of people, belonging to various nations. If guillotine resulted into quick death of persons, Kazarian Mafia’s techniques have been eliminating the human beings not only through mass murder, but also through perennial pain which may also be equated with slow poison.
As regards the historical background of the Kazarian Mafia and its connections with Israel and Zionist Jews, various writers of the Veterans Today have already exposed its evil-designs.
“The curtain is now being pulled back to fully expose the Khazarian Mafia and its evil plan to infiltrate, tyrannize the whole world and eradicate all Abrahamic Religions and allow only their Babylonian Talmudism also known as Luciferianism, Satanism or ancient Baal worship…the Khazarian Mafia (KM), the World’s largest Organized Crime Syndicate that the Khazarian oligarchy morphed into by their deployment of Babylonian Money-Magick…It has been exceedingly difficult to reconstruct this hidden secret history of the KM…We have done the best we can to reconstruct it…It was Mike Harris that connected the dots and made the actual discovery of the presence of the Khazarian Mafia’s secret history and blood oath to take revenge on Russia for helping Americans win the Revolutionary War and the Civil War, and their blood oath of revenge against America and Americans for winning these wars and sustaining the Union. At the Syrian Conference on Combating Terrorism and Religious Extremism December 1, 2014—in his Keynote address, Veterans Today Senior Editor and Director Gordon Duff disclosed publicly for the first time ever that World Terrorism is actually due to a large International Organized Crime Syndicate associated with Israel…And the shock-waves from his historic speech in Damascus continue to reverberate around the world even to this very day. And now Gordon Duff has asked President Putin to release Russian Intel which will expose about 300 traitors in Congress for their serious serial felonies and statutory espionage on behalf of the Khazarian Mafia (KM) against America and many Middle East nations.”
We now know that the Khazarian Mafia (KM) is waging a secret war against America and Americans by the use of False-flag Gladio-style terrorism, and via the illegal and Unconstitutional Federal Reserve System, the IRS, the FBI, FEMA, Homeland Security and the TSA. We know for certain that the KM was responsible for deploying an inside-job, Gladio-style False-flag attack on America on 9-11-01, as well as the Murrah Building Bombing on April 19, 1995….Khazarians develop into a nation ruled by an evil king, who had ancient Babylonian black arts, occult oligarchs serving as his court…The leaders of the surrounding nations, especially Russia, have had so many years of complaints by their citizens that, as a group, they deliver an ultimatum to the Khazarian king…he must choose one of the three Abrahamic religions for his people…Islam, Christianity and Judaism. The Khazarian king chose Judaism, and promised to stay within the requirements laid out by the surrounding confederacy of nations led by the Russian czar.
Despite his agreement and promise, the Khazarian king and his inner circle of oligarchs kept practicing ancient Babylonian black-magic, also known as Secret Satanism…Sadly, the Khazarians continued their evil ways, robbing and murdering those from surrounding countries who traveled through Khazaria. Khazarian robbers often attempted to assume their identities after they murdered these visitors, and became masters of disguises and false identities—a practice they have continued even to this very day, along with their child-sacrifice occult ceremonies, which are actually ancient Baal Worship…The Khazarian leaders had a well-developed spy network through which they obtained prior warning and escaped from Khazaria to European nations to the west, taking their vast fortune with them in gold and silver. They laid low and regrouped, while assuming new identities…To accomplish their invasion, they hired Oliver Cromwell to murder King Charles 1, and make England safe for banking again. This began the English Civil Wars which raged for nearly a decade, resulting in regicide of the royal family and hundreds of the genuine English nobility. This is how the City of London was set up as the banking capital of Europe and launched the beginning of the British Empire.
The Khazarian Mafia (KM) decides to infiltrate and hijack all World Banking using Babylonian Black-Magick, also known as Babylonian Money-Magick or the secret art of making money from nothing also using the power of pernicious usury to accumulate interest…The Rothschild banksters regroup and continue their covert attempts to install their own Babylonian money-magick bank inside America. In 1913, the Rothschild KM was able to establish a beachhead by bribing crooked, treasonous members of Congress to pass the illegal, Unconstitutional Federal Reserve Act on Christmas Eve without a required quorum. The Act was then signed by a crooked, bought off President, who was a traitor to America, like the members of Congress who voted for it. The KM put an illegal, unconstitutional tax system in place, in order to make sure that Americans would have to pay for high-level USG spending, approved by a bought-off, crooked Congress and Presidential puppets, put in place by corrupt KM campaign finance…It is easy for the KM to garner enough money to elect anyone they want, because when you control a bank that is a secret major counterfeiter, you have all the money made for you that you desire…they also bribed members of Congress to approve the Internal Revenue Service, which is their private collection agency incorporated in Puerto Rico…The Bolsheviks, at the direction of the Rothschild KM, raped, tortured and mass-murdered approximately 100 million Russians, including women, children and infants.
Some of the torture and bloodletting was so extreme, we are not going to mention it here in this article…They called this racially-paranoid mass Judaic delusion of world conquest, “World Zionism”, which is really a form of covert Babylonian Talmudism or Luciferianism…It is important to realize that the Rothschild KM took Germany down to nothing after WWI, created a vacuum for Fascism, and then rebuilt it, creating Naziism and installing Hitler as a counter-force to their Russian Bolshevism…Hitler became a problem for the KM when he broke free and begin acting in the interests of the German people and the free people of the world, and developed his own banking system free of the Rothschilds…We see the same thing today with the Khazarian war against Islam, because Islam forbids usury. That is why Israel is so vocal and aggressive about destroying the Islamic people of the world…The KM expected this to be a large WWII and when they supported both sides, this could be used to industrialize the whole world and maximize their bankster money-power…After WWII was finished, the Rothschild KM deployed the Cold War, and used this as an excuse to bring Nazi scientists and mind-kontrol experts to America under Operation Paperclip.
This allowed them to set up a worldwide spying and espionage system that far exceeded any of their prior efforts…Under this new system, they continue to infiltrate and hijack all American institutions, including the various American church systems, Freemasonry (especially the Scottish Rite and York Rite), the US military, US Intel, and most private defense contractors, the Judiciary and most agencies of the USG, including most State governments, and both major political parties as well…The Rothschild KM was able to use their self mis-labelled, so-called “holocaust” to serve as a mind-kontrol trigger to thwart and resist any criticism of their Zionist ways.”
As a matter of fact, Jews are owners of the many big cartels of the US in particular and the world in general. Based in the US, they have been running the major multinational corporations, arms factories, five star hotels, oil companies, liquor business, banks, film industry, print and electronic media on international level. Having influence on the financial institutes like World Bank and International Monetary Fund, Jews have direct and indirect hold on the global economy. Thus, by dominating the American internal policies Khazarian Mafia or Khazarian Jewish Mafia has moulded country’s foreign policy for their own interests and those of Israel. By changing America into a corporate industry, they have converted the world into a corporate industry.
It is notable that after the disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1991, the US emerged as the sole superpower in the unipolar world. In consultation with his Zionist-advisers, American former President Bush, (The Senior) replaced the old bipolar order with the New World Order (NWO), with the US acting as a kind of global policeman to protect the political, economic and religious interests of the Khazarian Mafia.
In the unipolar world, even the United Nations system became an instrument of the US policy to establish American hegemony in the world. The Third World—Muslim countries were compelled to realign their domestic policies according to Washington’s dictates. In order to obtain the hidden agenda of the Khazarian Jewish Mafia, the US imposed its sudden terms of globalization such as free markets, privatization and de-nationalization etc. on the ill-prepared developing countries and the Muslim countries, which left behind shattered nations and a global financial crisis and increased poverty in most of these countries, which resulted into painful deaths of many persons due to diseases and lack of medical treatment. It further widened the gap between the poor and the rich countries or G-7 countries. The Khazarian Mafia has continued to drive the project of globalization.
Besides, America’s child-killing sanctions against Iraq and Iran; late action to curb ethnic cleansing in Kosovo, support to Israel’s aggressive occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, with vetoing any effective action by the UN to curb the Israeli state terrorism greatly annoyed the Muslims all over the world.
When President George W. Bush became the US president, he and the neo-conservatives crossed all the limits in securing the political, economic and religious interests of Israel and the Khazarian Mafia at the cost of Muslims and patriot Americans.
Once Henry Kissinger stated “legitimacy is not natural or automatic, but created.” Under the cover of the false flag operation of the 9/11, the US President Bush orchestrated the drama of global war on terror.
Bush who used the words, “crusade against the evil-doers” adding to the perception that the ongoing ‘different war’ against terrorism is actually a war against the Islamic countries also warned the world to choose sides by saying, “either you are with us or with terrorists.” It was due to employment of pressure-diplomacy on the weak states—Muslim countries like Pakistan, Indonesia, Libya etc., including almost all the Arab states joined Bush anti-terrorism war. By manipulating the 9/11 carnage, Bush also got the sympathies of almost all the major Western countries including NATO states which also joined the fake global war on terror.
During the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq (By the US-British-led forces) and after occupation, the brutal tactics of the US-led NATO like heavy air bombardment and ground shelling by the sophisticated war machinery, including special military operations and extra-judicial assassinations killed several innocent persons. Particularly, the US military strategic warlords who preferred to create a paralyzing effect of ‘shock and awe’ displayed the terrible inferno of destruction in Afghanistan and Iraq.
In case of Iraq, many of the Iraqis including some members of the former Interim Governing Council were shocked at the violence in Fallujah. Even the US weekly, ‘Newsweek’ admitted in its publication of April 19/April 26, 2004 that the US forces “used very heavy hand in Fallujah where more than 400 people were killed. Four members of the [former] Governing Council resigned in a protest against America’s crackdown in Fallujah…according to doctors figure of the deaths was impossible to check and it is more than 400…an airstrike dropped a 500 pound bomb. Arab language TV claimed that the bomb killed more than a score of civilians at prayer.”
Like Afghanistan, American soldiers also massacred several wounded people and civilians in Iraq. In November, 2004, a number of world’s televised channels including those of America showed footage of a US marine who was shooting and killing an already captive and wounded Iraqi prisoner at close range in a mosque in Fallujah where civilians had taken shelter.
Nobody can deny the fact that these were the worst examples of the US-led state terrorism or use of abnormal force.
It is of particular attention that the US-led troops, assisted by CIA have carried out indiscriminate mass round-ups in catching up suspected Muslim men and women in Afghanistan and Iraq, including some Arab countries without evidence. Israeli intelligence agency Mossad and Indian secret agency RAW have helped the CIA officials in arresting the Muslim men, having beard and ladies, wearing scarves. Besides Guantanamo Bay and Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison, CIA torture cells were present in several Islamic countries and were also set up in ships where US secret agencies and military personnel employed various methods of torture on the militants and suspected persons like physical violence and even murder. American notorious private military firm Blackwater also eliminated countless Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan.
In March, 2013, an investigative report by the British Guardian/BBC disclosed that acting under the direction of the top US officials; the CIA utilized a global network of secret prisons, foreign intelligence agents and torture centers in various Islamic countries including Belgium, Thailand etc. where torture was conducted directly by American intelligence operatives.
The report also mentioned atrocities of the US-backed entities, carried out in Bagram Airbase (Afghanistan), Guantanamo and Iraq—unleashed a deadly sectarian militia which terrorized the Sunni community and germinated a civil war between Sunnis and Shias, and claimed tens of thousands of lives.
It revealed, “At the height of that sectarian conflict, 3,000 bodies a month were strewn on the streets of Iraq. Rounding up Sunnis in American pickup trucks, the captives were thrown into secret prisons established in libraries, airports, and ministries. Anti-occupation politicians, human rights activists, and journalists were murdered. The purpose was also to terrorize ordinary Iraqis who opposed the US occupation.”
In this regard, the report focuses on the role of retired Colonel James Steele who worked with the Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Gen. David Petraeus who also served as President Obama’s CIA director. Steele sent regular memos to Donald Rumsfeld who forwarded them to Vice-President Dick Cheney and President George Bush. However, thousands of Iraqis died and millions were displaced as a result of the chaos and brutal practices.
Some latest reports suggest that more than 3 million people, including civilians died in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan which was not attacked, but was, deliberately, destabilized by CIA, RAW and Mossad, as the latter is the only nuclear country in the Islamic World.
Following his predecessor, President Barack Obama also continued the ruthless killings of the Muslims to complete the unfinished agenda of the Khazarian Mafia.
Apart from air strikes on funerals, marriage-ceremonies and mosques in Afghanistan, he converted Egypt, Libya, Syria, Yemen etc. into concentration camps. As part of the US double game, CIA which created Al-Qaeda and then Islamic State group (Also known as Daesh, ISIS and ISIL), including Al-Qaeda’s Al-Nusra Front and Syrian rebel groups in fighting against the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Iraqi regime is responsible for the mass murder of more than 2 million Muslims and Christians who were killed in civil wars—ground and aerial strikes of the US-led Western countries—suicide attacks and bomb blasts, conducted by Al-Qaeda and ISIS. Besides, during the phony global war on terror, in these countries and Afghanistan and Iraq, especially in Syria, millions of Muslims became homeless. The plight of refugees—countless deaths, particularly of children due to lack of medical treatment and starvation has shocked the peace-loving people of the international community. Same practice can be witnessed in case of Myanmar (Burma) where US-Israeli supported-brutal military operations against the Rohingya Muslims have tortured to death tens thousands of the Muslims and forced a majority of them to migrate to Bangladesh and other Islamic countries.
President Obama had also broken all the record of human rights violations by extrajudicial killings of the innocent people through illegal CIA-operated drone attacks in Afghanistan, Somalia, Yemen etc. in general and Pakistan in particular.
It is mentionable that through the war against terrorism, President Bush and President Obama provided a golden chance to Israel and India to accelerate the systematic genocide of the Palestinians and Kashmiris by equating the wars of liberation in the controlled territories of Palestine and Kashmir with terrorism. Their forces have been employing military terrorism such as curfews, crackdowns, sieges, massacre and targeted killings to maintain alien rule on these territories.
It is noteworthy that a number of investigative reports after lab-verification verified that since 1948, Israel used the banned chemical and radiological materials against the Palestinians, Egyptians and Syrians, and during various phases of the Palestinian Intifada, which resulted in to severe convulsions, the burning sensation, the difficulty to breathe, the vomiting and pain found in relation to the victims—mostly women and children, a majority of whom died in the long run. In 2006, during the war against Lebanon, Israel used banned chemical weapons like phosphorous bombs in Lebanon and Gaza, which killed 286 Palestinians and injured 4,200.
Notably, the main purpose of occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq by the US-led forces was to possess energy resources of Central Asia and Iraq. In case of the Middle East, we can see the resources of natural gas reserves in the whole Persian Gulf region. Hence, the motives of the CIA-led Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates in financing with billions of dollars to the opposition rebel groups and ISIL in Syria was to occupy the natural gas and oil of the region.
Many analysts say that Russia supplies Europe with a quarter of the gas. America and its European allies which are involved in the Syrian war want to end European dependence on Russia. American President Obama had openly said to reduce Europe’s reliance on Russian gas.
In this context, F. William Engdahl wrote, “Today the US-backed wars in Ukraine and in Syria are but two fronts in the same strategic war to cripple Russia and China and to rupture any Eurasian counter-pole to a US-controlled New World Order. In each, control of energy pipelines, this time primarily of natural gas pipelines—from Russia to the EU via Ukraine and from Iran and Syria to the EU via Syria—is the strategic goal.”
It is worth-mentioning that according to the retired NATO Secretary General Wesley Clark, a memo from the Office of the US Secretary of Defense just a few weeks after 9/11 revealed plans to attack and destroy the governments in 7 countries in five years, starting with Iraq and moving on to Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Iran. In an interview, Clark said that this strategy is fundamentally about control of the region’s vast oil and gas resources.
Similarly, when during the regime of the then President Gen. Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan initiated the construction of Gwadar deep-seaport in Balochistan province in March 2002 with Chinese assistance, sirens went off in the capitals of some European countries, especially the US, India and Israel which took it as a threat to their global and regional plans.
Located on the southwestern coast of Pakistan, Balochistan’s Gwadar seaport is close to the Strait of Hormuz from where more than 17 million barrels of oil passes every day. Its ideal location among South Asia, the oil-rich Middle East, and oil and gas-resourced Central Asia has further increased its strategic significance. Besides, Balochistan’s abundant mineral resources irritate the eyes of Washington, New Delhi and Tel Aviv who intend to weaken Pakistan for their collective aims.
Based in Afghanistan, CIA, Mossad and RAW which are well-penetrated in the ISIS and Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) including their linked terror outfits and Baloch separatist groups are using their terrorists to destabilize Tibetan regions of China, Iranian Sistan-Baluchistan and Pakistan’s Balochistan by arranging the subversive activities. In this connection, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is their special target.
Machiavelli advises the rulers to have a lion-like image outwardly, and act upon the traits of goat inwardly. He also suggests them foreign adventures and the use of terror to obtain their goals. In his sense, a good ruler should be a good opportunist and hypocrite. While echoing Machiavelli, Morgenthau points out that sometimes, rulers act upon immoral activities like deceit, fraud, falsehood and even murder to fulfill their selfish aims.
Indicating dual policy, Morgenthau, and Palmer and Perkins opine, “Just as power became the instrument of ambitious nationalism and state’s leaders, it has now become the tool of ideologies. The true nature of the policy is concealed by ideological justifications and rationalization.”
Although in the present world of social media and Internet, such a sinister politics has been replaced by modern trends such as fair-dealings, reconciliation and economic development, yet by following the old strategies, Khazarian Mafia has been practicing the most horrible form of colonialism and neo-colonialism, while employing ruthless techniques of terrorism by assisting the militant groups like Al-Qaeda and ISIS which conducted various terrorism-related attacks in the US, Europe and other Western countries, including Turkey, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Iran, Indonesia, Philippines etc., and some African countries. Thus, they massacred thousands of persons which also include Christians.
It is also of particular attention that on September 25, 2016, at the UN General Assembly, while indicating the unjust global order, Pope Francis condemned the global financial institutions, calling on them to ensure that countries “are not subjected to oppressive lending systems which, far from promoting progress, subject people to mechanisms which generate greater poverty, exclusion and dependence.”
Earlier, addressing the US Congress, Pope Francis said,
“No religion is immune from forms of individual delusion or ideological extremism…We must be especially attentive to every type of fundamentalism. A delicate balance is required to combat violence perpetual in the name of a religion, an ideology or an economic system…Every life is sacred.”
Taking note of America’s non-acceptance of the Syrian refugees, Francis reminded the law-makers by remarking that the United States “is part of a larger whole on America in the Americas, where immigration is a deeply rooted part of history…We, the people of this continent, are not fearful of foreigners, because most of us were once foreigners.”
While calling for an end to the arms trade by arms dealers, Francis explained, “Deadly weapons for money are being sold to those who plan to inflict untold suffering on individuals and society…Money that is drenched in blood, often innocent blood.”
He further added, “If politics must truly be at the service of human person, it follows that it cannot be slave to economy and finance.”
Meanwhile, since September 2015, when Russian-led coalition of Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon-based Hezbollah started successful military operations against the CIA-supported rebels and mercenaries after their failure to topple Assad’s government, proving links of Al-Qaeda and ISIS, several false flag terror assaults in Europe and the US, were, in fact, arranged by Mossad in connivance with some CIA operatives and ISIS terrorists to increase anti-Muslim phenomena in the West—now, more resentment is found against the US-led West, and even the moderate Muslims are likely to join the militants. Another aim, especially of Mossad is to radicalize the Muslims against the Western Christians and the latter against the former.
The pro-Israeli President Donald Trump who manipulated these terror assaults, continues his anti-Muslim policies. Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and implementation of his decision to move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem have clearly proved his connections with Israel.
It is most surprising to note that especially since the orchestrated drama of the 9/11 attacks , on the one side, Khazarian Jewish Mafia has been acting upon its evil designs by targeting the non-Zionist Americans and the international community, while, on the other, it is, rapidly, jeopardizing its financial interests by destabilizing the global economy.
Likewise, being a capitalist, President Donald Trump is blindly pursuing the goals of the Khazarian Mafia. But, at the same time, like the dual policy of Khazarian Mafia, Mr. Trump is jeopardizing the economic interests of America, as his initiation of trade war-strategy against the Europe and China has displayed.
Like Napoleon Bonaparte, President Trump is a staunch warrior, as his war-like strategy regarding Afghanistan and Iran show. Taking cognizance of Trump’s contradictory approach and emotional statements, some Americans call him a sick man. In fact, like the revolutionaries of the French Revolution, President Trump has also gone mad.
Now, Russian-led coalition has almost defeated the ISIS and its linked militants groups in Syria and Iraq, who are on flee.
While, acting upon the secret strategy of the Khazarian Mafia and besides supporting the fanatic Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, American extremist President Trump is also backing the Indian leader of the fanatic party BJP and the fundamentalist Prime Minister Narindra Modi against China and Pakistan in accordance with anti-China, anti-Russia, anti-Pakistan and anti-Muslim agenda. He is leading the clandestine Indo-Israeli nexus as part of the invisible war of the Khazarian Jewish Mafia.
Nonetheless, according to an estimate, more than 8 million Muslims (Excluding the missing persons) have been killed during fake global war on terror and in various terror related attacks by the terrorist groups. The figure of their fatalities is more than 6 or 7 million, which has, exaggeratedly, been claimed by the Jews in connection with the Holocaust. While, the phony war on terror shows no end, American President Trump is likely to accelerate the massacre of the Muslims, Christians and military personnel of the US-led West in Syria, Afghanistan etc., and other vulnerable countries by further motivating the terrorist outfits like ISIS to target the Muslims and Christians through more acts of terrorism.
If not checked in time by the peace-loving Muslims, Christians, Hindus, Jews and Buddhists, the rigid and racist policies of the President Donald Trump who is completing the unfinished agenda of the Khazarian Mafia or Khazarian Jewish Mafia could culminate in civil war in the US, which is already facing multiple internal crises owing to the prolonged war on terror (and in Afghanistan).
While the world has already been radicalized on religious lines, this cabal can bring about a major war between the Muslim and the Christian worlds. The most dangerous aspect is that, owing to the conspiracy of the Khazarian Jewish Mafia, a war-like situation exists between Syria and Israel, and between Iran and Israel. Any such war could culminate into nuclear war between America and Russia, and that would envelope the entire world and take it to the state of nature.
Returning to our earlier discussion, we can, undoubtedly, conclude that like the radicals of the French Revolution, the Khazarian Mafia has gone mad and follows the Reign of Terror of the French Revolution in its worst form.
Note: the Khazarian king Bulan (Khazar) had chosen Judaism as the religion of the Khazarians. Therefore, the term Khazarian Jewish Mafia has also been used in this article.
Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations
The Houthis in Yemen are expected to start being slaughtered en-masse on June 12th. The U.S.-Saudi-UAE plan is to destroy the Yemenese port city of Al Hudaydah, which is the only entry-way by which food reaches approximately seven million Shiites, members of the Houthi tribe, who occupy the western third of Yemen, and who had recently ruled all of Yemen. The U.S. provides the weapons and the training, and the United Arab Emirates supplies the pilots for this operation, which is financed mainly by the Saudis. The objective is to establish a joint UAE-Saudi-run government of Yemen.
On Monday, June 11th, the New York Times bannered “U.N. Pulls Out of City in Yemen, Fearing Bloody Assault by Arab Coalition”. That report didn’t mention that this is America’s fundamentalist-Sunni coalition of Arab monarchies, using American weapons, in order to bomb and blockade, and now starve to death, approximately seven million Houthis, and that it’s part of a broader war in which the U.S. and Israel are allied with fundamentalist-Sunni monarchies, which are trying to conquer Shiite-run countries, especially Yemen, Syria, and ultimately Iran. The Houthis are Shia, not Sunni. On 24 October 2014, a Houthi leader was interviewed in Yemen Times, which reported: “Al-Bukhaiti does not think that ‘the Iranian system’ [a Shia theocracy] could ever be implemented in the country. Neither do the Houthis have any interest in bringing back the Imamate. Instead, he describes the Zaydi [their Shia] doctrine as ‘republican’ and the Houthi group as ‘liberal’.” None of America’s Islamic allies is even remotely like that description.
America’s alliance of fundamentalist-Sunni Arab monarchies call Iran especially an “existential threat” to themselves, because Iran, and Shiites generally, are opposed to monarchical governments, especially after 1979, when Iranians overthrew the U.S. CIA-installed (in 1953) Shah. And all of America’s allies in the Middle East, other than theocratic-Jewish apartheid Israel, are fundamentalist-Sunni monarchies.
The reason the U.N. is pulling out is to avoid being killed by these American missiles and bombs, which are expected to produce, by means of these UAE and Saudi proxy-fighters, a rare American victory in the Middle East.
The United Arab Emirates are providing the U.S.-trained pilots, who will drop U.S. bombs from U.S. planes, so as to destroy Al Hudaydah, and thereby completely block any food from reaching the seven-to eight million food-stranded Houthi Shiites.
The New York Times report said, “Diplomats involved in behind-the-scenes negotiations say that the United Arab Emirates officially warned the British government on Friday that an attack on Al Hudaydah was imminent. The Emiratis said they would give three days for humanitarian workers and nongovernmental organizations to flee the city. The International Committee for the Red Cross removed its staff from the city over the weekend. … [The U.S. Secretary of State,] Mr. Pompeo said that in his conversation with the Emiratis he had made clear the United States’ ‘desire to address their security concerns while preserving the free flow of humanitarian aid and lifesaving commercial imports,’ the statement said.”
On June 5th, Agence France Presse reported that, “More than 22 million people are now in serious need of aid, with 8.4 million on the brink of starvation, according to the United Nations.”
So, while the U.S. has approved this operation, the U.S. also has a “desire” to be “preserving the free flow of” food, and this suggests that the U.S. Government intends that the blame for the expected genocide will fall only upon America’s fundamentalist-Sunni royal partners, who are expected to be running Yemen afterward. Whatever “concerns” for “preserving the free flow of humanitarian aid and lifesaving commercial imports” that the U.S. might have had, will, no doubt, show up during the starvation-operation, which will follow the bombardment of Al Hudaydah.
This mission is clearly important to the Trump Administration. The New York Times report closes: “American military officials do not want Congress to prevent military aid to the two nations [UAE and Saudi Arabia], both of which are crucial allies in counterterrorism, nor do they want a vacuum of power in Yemen to result in a new incubator for extremist groups like the Islamic State [which group is fundamentalist-Sunni, like America’s allies, the monarchs in UAE and Saudi Arabia, are] and Al Qaeda [which also is fundamentalist-Sunni]. Diplomats in the region say they believe that only more pressure from Washington will stop the planned assault.” The U.S. has instead given its allies the go-ahead to proceed.
Trump had said, when he campaigned for the Presidency in 2016, that he had opposed the 2003 invasion of Iraq. However, no record existed confirming that that had been so. In any case, there has been no indication of anything like such sentiments from him since he became President, and all of the people whom he has appointed to diplomatic and military posts have been consistent supporters of American invasions, including of Iraq. But this time around, the U.S. is not providing any of the actual troops.
Thus far in his Presidency, Trump has sold to the royal family of Saudi Arabia $400 billion in U.S.-made weapons and training. Additional billions have been sold to UAE. So, the war in Yemen is profitable for American firms such as Lockheed Martin. And no American is likely to get the blame. Perhaps Trump has learned something, after all, from the experience of George W. Bush. Trump is aspiring to win the Nobel Peace Prize, which his immediate predecessor, Barack Obama, had won. (After winning that, Obama bombed Libya in 2011, but Obama’s Prize was never retracted.) Perhaps Trump has sound reason to be optimistic.
The historical changes we are witnessing have never been so evident as in the last few days. The G7 summit highlighted the limits of the Atlantic alliance, while the SCO meeting opens up unprecedented possibilities for Eurasian integration.
At the G7 meeting in Canada in recent days, we witnessed unprecedented clashes between Trump and G7 leaders over the imposition of tariffs on trade. We must now conclude that the event has been relegated to irrelevance, as the G7 has heretofore derived its clout from speaking as one voice. Trump even went further, refusing to sign the final draft of the organization’s joint statement after Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau lashed out at Trump’s trade decisions. Trump showed how little he cares for his allies, leaving the summit a day early to arrive early for the meeting with Kim Jong-un in Singapore to make preparations for the long-awaited encounter between the two leaders.
In terms of geopolitical contrasts, it is easy to highlight the differences that have been seen between the G7 meeting and the meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), held in China and, for the first time, including India and Pakistan as new members. While Putin and Xi met and exchanged praises and medals to celebrate the Sino-Russian strategic relationship as well as their personal friendship, Merkel and the various leaders of the G7 were in animated discussion with Trump over his “America first” policies hurting EU member states economically.
Returning for a moment to Trump’s escape from the G7 (also to avoid further clashes with his “allies”), it should be remembered that in this shifting puzzle of international relations, Assad was poised to meet with Kim Jong-un right on the eve of the US-DPRK summit. Whether or not the meeting between the leaders of Syria and the DPRK will go ahead, it nevertheless confirms the alliance between Pyongyang and Damascus, underlining how adversaries of the US still try to coordinate and manage between themselves their approaches to Washington’s policies of chaos.
Clearly both Putin and Xi have every interest in seeing Trump and Kim Jong-un reach an agreement. But at the same time, they are well aware of the situation in the Middle East and Iran that risks plunging the whole region into unprecedented chaos. Putin and Xi are clearly trying to manage the chaos emerging from Washington, as are Assad and Kim in their own own way. In this sense, the repeated aid of Russia and Iran to Qatar is part of a Sino-Russo-Iranian strategy to contain the chaos created by Washington, which has even extended to the Gulf states with the Saudi-led blockade of Qatar. In this regard, even Berlin is beginning to be enticed by the opportunities for the European Union beckoning from the east, this temptation made stronger by the reality that the Atlanticist relationship is hurting Europe through the tariffs and penalties imposed on American geopolitical opponents like Iran.
European companies have suffered major economic losses as a result of Trump’s suspension of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), with European companies facing US sanctions should they continue to do business with Iran. This is only the latest example of undue pressure being placed on the energy strategy of sovereign countries that are theoretically allied to the US. In the same way, the sanctions placed on the Nord Stream 2 project are further widening the cracks in the Atlantic alliance.
To understand the level of disorder within Europe, the North Atlantic and the Middle East, it is enough to consider the attack on Mohammed bin Salman almost two months ago, with Israel on the one hand boasting about agreements with Iran for a mutual abstention in the Daraa affaire and Trump finding nothing better to do than to break every alliance in sight through his commencement of a trade war.
It is clear that the old unipolar order no longer exists and that we now find ourselves in a multipolar situation, courtesy of the isolationist direction of the United States. This enables the further smoothening of existing divergence between nations in Asia, the Middle East and part of Europe.
Europe has the opportunity to use Trump’s “America First” policy as a pivot to expand its network of relationships and convergence of interests with more countries outside of the EU or NATO. For once, the EU could use the weapon of its union of many moderately powerful countries to increase its negotiating power with the United States.
But the reality is very different at the moment, with Europe being in the middle of an internal struggle that has been ongoing for some time now. The wave of new “populist” parties, both of the right and left, has served as a repository for an inevitable transfer of votes following the disasters of the unipolar period (1989-2014). This has also upset the previous balance of power within the European elites.
The root causes of this “populist” political change lie in the new multipolar world order that has had a ripple effect on the policies of individual European countries.
The neoliberal ideology, broadly acquiesced to by the “left”, has remained anchored to the diktat of the “old” unipolar world order, which saw Washington as the only hegemonic force.
What remains in the European political landscape seems to be divided into two streams. On the one side, there is a minority clearly eyeing a sort of neoconservatism 2.0, a sort of rehash of Reaganism. On the other side, there is a complete rejection of any of the faces currently participating in the political system.
For Europe it is a question of seeing what this new political phase will produce with regard to international issues like the sanctions against Russia and Iran. The behavior of European governments will give an idea of the extent to which they intend to obtain some sort of independence in conducting multipolar relations that are not necessarily linked to Washington.
In a sense, Berlin, London, Paris and Rome are now at the center of the concept of multipolar relationships. It is interesting to look at how strategists and newspaper editorialists in China and Russia look at what is going on in Europe, particular in Italy. While there is trust, there is also the awareness that there is still a European reluctance to favor development towards the East at the expense of relations with the US.
The take-home message that Trump seems to be giving Europeans is that it is pointless for them to remain as butlers who wait on Washington. We are living in a defining moment that will shape the the near-term future of vast areas of the world. There are many situations that are moving forward, bringing us closer to the moment where the West will either find common ground or splinter. Factors hitherto appearing unrelated are now serving to have different countries coalesce into a common destiny.
The summit between Trump and Kim Jong-un will lay the groundwork that will reveal whether Washington really wants to start talking or is only buying for time. Given the recent behavior and attitude of Trump and the political figures around him, the summit, like the foreign policy of Trump’s administration in general, becomes unpredictable and difficult to decipher. If there is one thing that unites the leaders of the G7, the SCO and Kim Jong-un, it is precisely the difficulty of relating to a declining world power and a leader who has no strategic vision; the common suffering stemming from an internal struggle within the United States to impose upon the world its antiquated and declining strategic vision.
Palestinian Authority forces violently suppressed demonstrators in the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah on Wednesday evening.
The protesters were demanding an end to PA sanctions that are compounding the suffering of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
Earlier in the day, the PA decided to stop granting permits for protests during the upcoming Eid al-Fitr holiday marking the end of Ramadan, to “make it easier for citizens to conduct their normal lives.”
Hours later, PA forces fired tear gas and sound grenades, attacked protesters and arrested journalists and activists before the holiday had even begun.
EU trainers have included former members of British forces involved in human rights abuses in Northern Ireland.
European and American support for the PA is predicated on its willingness to continue “security coordination” with Israel, which means in practice helping to suppress any form of resistance to occupation.
Videos circulated on social media showing riot police violently suppressing demonstrations:
منعت الصحافيين من التغطية واستخدمت القوة وأطلقت الغاز بكثافة… الأجهزة الأمنية تتصدى للحراك الشبابي المطالب برفع العقوبات عن غزة.
“PA security forces haven’t fired a single tear gas canister or bullets at Israeli forces raiding Palestinian neighborhoods,” Quds News Network stated. “Today they used those means against peaceful Palestinian protesters in Ramallah.”
PA security forces haven’t fired a single teargas canister or bullets at Israeli forces raiding Palestinian neighbourhoods. Today they used those means against peaceful Palestinian protesters in Ramallah who demanded President Abbas to lift his measures imposed on the Gaza Strip. pic.twitter.com/mOCmeFRLnj
Hundreds of Palestinians in the West Bank took to the streets multiple times this week calling on the PA to lift sanctions it imposed on the Gaza Strip last year.
After 100s filled squares of Ramallah twice this week to protest PA punitive measures on Gaza, PA apparently denies permit for planned protest today. Just the latest from thin-skinned authorities who seem to excel at just one thing: stamping out dissent https://t.co/85b66Pt9Njpic.twitter.com/V2aIY7aM0p
Palestinians used the hashtag “lift the sanctions” in Arabic on Twitter to express solidarity with Gaza.
Palestinian civil society groups called on the PA to lift its ban on demonstrations, stating that it is “illegal, unconstitutional and a violation of citizens’ rights to gather peacefully and express their opinions.”
They added that PA security forces must ensure the safety of those participating in the protests.
But in June 2007, Hamas moved against them preemptively, expelling Fatah forces from Gaza.
The attempted putsch against Hamas after it won the elections resulted in the current division, where Abbas’ Western-backed PA kept control in the West Bank, while the internationally isolated Hamas has ruled the interior of the besieged Gaza Strip.