Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Bush, Putin and Iran: Who's isolating whom?


Why Did We Invade Iraq Anyway?

Read it here

The US & UK Neocon's-Anti-Islamic Rhetoric and War Mongering Against Iran Will Only Bring About Further Global Polarisation and Instability

This week the old war mongering alliance of George Bush and Tony Blair hit the front pages with both stoking up the prospects of military confrontation with Iran.

In a press interview on Wednesday George Bush said: "I've told people that if you're interested in avoiding World War III, it seems like you ought to be interested in preventing them (Iran) from having the knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon." Although not stating that military action against Iran's nuclear facilities was imminent, Bush's statement was clearly aimed to build the justification for future action either by the US or its local proxy Israel.

Just a day later, as if synchronised, his old ally Tony Blair speaking at a charity event in New York accused Iran of fuelling a "deadly ideology" of Muslim extremism by supporting terrorist organisations. He said: "This ideology now has a state, Iran, that is prepared to back and finance terror in the pursuit of destabilising countries whose people wish to live in peace." Likening the rise of Islam to the rise of fascism in Europe in the 1930's, Tony Blair echoed the sentiments of David Cameron who used a similar analogy by comparing the rise of political Islam with Nazi fascism. Cameron stated in 2005 "The driving force behind today's terrorist threat is Islamist fundamentalism. The struggle we are engaged in is, at root, ideological. During the last century a strain of Islamist thinking has developed which, like other totalitarianisms, such as Nazism and Communism, offers its followers a form of redemption through violence."

It is not surprising to hear such inflammatory statements from these politicians as each has described himself as a friend of Israel and espouses a Neocon, secular supremacist view towards Middle East politics and the Iraq occupation. This Neocon rhetoric from within the US & UK is vehemently anti-Islamic and in total denial of the popular momentum for the return of Islamic governance in the Muslim world. A recent poll conducted by academics at the University of Maryland indicated that support for the strict application of the Shariah and political unification under a Caliphate in six Muslim countries averaged at 70%. Support for resistance movements such as Hezbollah and Hamas, who are regarded as terrorist entities by the US & UK, is also widespread as the election of Hamas to government in occupied Palestine has shown. The view among Muslims globally towards the US & UK is that an overwhelming majority consider both countries as having foreign policies that are anti-Islam and pro-Israel. The appointment of Tony Blair as chairman of the Middle East quartet, with his track record of spilling Muslim blood, will only alienate the Muslim masses further and reinforce the view that the West has no intention of acting as an honest and impartial broker in the Middle East.

It is ironic that after the invasion and occupation of two Muslim countries since 2001 causing the mass killings of hundreds of thousands of civilians, the imposition of puppet regimes and un-Islamic constitutions based upon the principles of western democratic values, the Neocons of the US and UK refer to popular Islamic movements as either terrorists or Nazis. Rather, it is the inability of the Neocon mindset to recognise their own fascist credentials including their policy of demonising Islam and their support for torture and detention without trial, which is the true hallmark of 1930's European fascism.

It is imperative for Muslims and all genuine people of conscience to stand against the rise of this new tyranny of our age and to work to bring about it's demise. Through the application of sublime Islamic justice, the return of the Islamic Caliphate will herald a new age of global justice and stability and will bring an end to the Neocon fascism that has taken root in international affairs.

from Hizb ut-Tahrir

Pre-1947 Palestine

The old lie that palestine was dry desert waiting for a people is just that--a lie. This clip for all people to see the Beauty of the Palestinian People before they were ethnically cleansed and murdered and made into refugees by the State of Israel.

Music by Andrea Bocelli-ALl My Life


The End of the World is Nigh

Fareed Zakaria writes in Newsweek:

"At a meeting with reporters last week, President Bush said that "if you're interested in avoiding World War III, it seems like you ought to be interested in preventing [Iran] from having the knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon." These were not the barbs of some neoconservative crank or sidelined politician looking for publicity. This was the president of the United States, invoking the specter of World War III if Iran gained even the knowledge needed to make a nuclear weapon."

"The American discussion about Iran has lost all connection to reality. Norman Podhoretz, the neoconservative ideologist whom Bush has consulted on this topic, has written that Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is "like Hitler … a revolutionary whose objective is to overturn the going international system and to replace it in the fullness of time with a new order dominated by Iran and ruled by the religio-political culture of Islamofascism." For this staggering proposition Podhoretz provides not a scintilla of evidence."

"Here is the reality. Iran has an economy the size of Finland's and an annual defense budget of around $4.8 billion. It has not invaded a country since the late 18th century. The United States has a GDP that is 68 times larger and defense expenditures that are 110 times greater. Israel and every Arab country (except Syria and Iraq) are quietly or actively allied against Iran. And yet we are to believe that Tehran is about to overturn the international system and replace it with an Islamo-fascist order? What planet are we on?"

Read the rest here. If you're yet to be persuaded that the purpose of this increasingly hysterical rhetoric is to prepare the ground for a possible war, you may be interested in this interview in Esquire:

"Two former high-ranking policy experts from the Bush Administration say the U.S. has been gearing up for a war with Iran for years, despite claiming otherwise. It'll be Iraq all over again."

"In the years after 9/11, Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann worked at the highest levels of the Bush administration as Middle East policy experts for the National Security Council. Mann conducted secret negotiations with Iran. Leverett traveled with Colin Powell and advised Condoleezza Rice. They each played crucial roles in formulating policy for the region leading up to the war in Iraq. But when they left the White House, they left with a growing sense of alarm -- not only was the Bush administration headed straight for war with Iran, it had been set on this course for years. That was what people didn't realize. It was just like Iraq, when the White House was so eager for war it couldn't wait for the UN inspectors to leave. The steps have been many and steady and all in the same direction. And now things are getting much worse. We are getting closer and closer to the tripline, they say."

Read the rest here. And see my earlier posts giving background on the Iran situation here, here, and my radio interview on the subject with Nadim Mahjoub here.

from The Democrat's Diary

Bush, Putin and WW III?
Aijaz Ahmad on the Russian-Iranian handshake (2 of 3)


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Bush heats up words with Iran and Russia


Further evidence how Bush's threats of an attack on Iran are built-up on a series of falsehoods which are constantly repeated by a complicit mainstream media and his vassals in France and Britain.

Sanctions: a Prelude to War?


Monday, October 29, 2007

Ziegler: Israel is the worst colonial regime

Read it here
More Warnings Of A US War On Iran
By Peter Symonds

The Bush administration’s unprecedented decision last week to brand the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a weapons proliferator and its Quds Force as a “supporter of terrorism” has heightened tensions with Tehran and undermined European efforts at negotiations, setting the stage for a US attack on Iran

'War On Terror' Is Now War On Iran
By Pepe Escobar

Scores of middle-aged, mild-mannered, bearded gentlemen - the technocrats of the Iranian military bourgeoisie - are now officially enjoying the status of "terrorists", at least from a Washington point of view

The Devil’s Playground
By Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich

I make an effort to understand this President turned dictator and his reasons for planning genocide. Given Russia’s stark warning and Europe’s precarious stance in that 25% of it’s oil and 40% of its natural gas is supplied by Russia, a military confrontation with Iran would likely drag in other nations. What reason other than sheer madness would he have for doing this?

from Countercurrents

BBC: Big Brother Cooperation

It's a matter of alarm and concern that there are so many people out there who still believe that the BBC is a balanced and fair-minded source of news and current affairs. That belief was, at best ill-founded and at worst, typical of the hypocrisy of a British self-image of decency and fair-mindedness which, through that peculiarly British imperialist institution, the public school, gave succeeding generations the ideological veneer and justification for an unabashed and rapacious colonialism.

So successful were Britain's ruling classes in persuading themselves of their manifest destiny to rule --an ideology which gained serious promotion through Rudyard Kipling's obnoxious caricature of the ruled as being the White Man's burden-- that both Britain's rulers and their ruled came to believe in their own Victorian spin.

It was out of that national hypocrisy that the BBC was born in the twilight decades of Britain's decayed raj when, despite the harsh face of colonialism, a Scottish Presbyterian, Lord Reith, was canny enough to disguise the BBC's real purpose of control through the instilling of elitist values by giving it the motto, "Let Nation Speak Peace Unto Nation"!

Today, in the post-Blair vassal state of a United Kingdom itself in collapse, Reith's motto has become nothing more than an embarrassment for a corporation that is increasingly recognized as being little more than an exclusive conduit for state propaganda. The greater majority of BBC personnel may, as reports suggest, like to consider themselves to be liberal-minded nice guys but the message that Aunty puts out to the world is one of totalitarianism and brazen warmongering.

Its present, wholly one-sided, coverage of the war crime that was the invasion of Iraq and the imperialist occupation of that country and Afghanistan is just a case in point. Another is its calculated avoidance of any mention of the stolen US elections of 2000 and 2004 where the people of the United States were, in effect, hijacked by a group of robber politicians and a corrupt judiciary. Another is its continued promotion of the official Bush-instigated conspiracy theory of 911 and its silence over the extremely suspicious events surrounding that other probable conspiracy, the London bombings of 7 July 2005.

One could keep on with a long list of the BBC's embedded reportage of events emanating as straight spin from the state's sources, both in London and Washington. Keeping out any real, critical political analysis and barring its airwaves to anyone other than the apologists of the British state and its Washington boss, it stubbornly insists on promoting Neocon ideologues such as the unhinged John Bolton who is constantly given BBC airtime long after having been discredited and fired from office.

BBC's 'Bonkers' Bolton

All that is bad enough but the role that the BBC is playing is much worse and far more deceptive than that.

Using anodyne language, innuendo and subtle suggestion, the BBC inverts the reality of affairs by creating an alternative reality and reporting on that instead as the authentic world.

The British media are masters in the art of deceit, they don't distort reality so much as manufacture another version, casually dismissing the truth as an unrepresentative oddity.

Outright deception, delivered in a regular voice and pleasing prose, even and chirpy of tone, triumphs, as honesty is crowded out by the brilliant ruse that presents telling the truth not as the presence of honesty, but the absence of etiquette ..

Kola, Medialens, 28 October 2007

BBC News 24 is the corporation's flagship, satellite broadcaster of news and current affairs, hence given a razzle-dazzle imagery of up-to-date, global news reportage accompanied with the sound of an urgent, authoritative yet vibrant, drumming rhythm heard in every airport departure lounge and hometown settlement across the planet.

But, together with the rest of the corrupt BBC, News 24 is feeding you and me, twenty four seven three sixty-five, what is little more than a carefully packaged, unmitigated lie.

A case in point was News 24's recently broadcast programme in its Our World series, "Do they know who we are?" ostensibly a piece on the rapid growth of electronic surveillance technology but hidden beneath the packaging actually its promotion as something desirable that the majority of people want.

The attention span of the average viewer is no more than a few, brief seconds so the message has got to be put across in the first moments. It is then reinforced over and over with a few variations included such as an opposing view or argument which is then immediately demolished.

So this piece of surveillance promotion starts with a cheerfully upbeat version of the Harry Lime Theme from the Third Man, zither and all. This sets the mood for a positive reaction from the audience. If a negative reaction were required, the music would be appropriately anxious, even disturbing.

Almost immediately a message flashes across the screen: "75% want more security." After some impressive clips showing Silicon Valley scientists predicting the inevitability of increasingly hi-tech surveillance technology we are introduced to the 'product', in this case a Gameboy-like hand-held sensor which can detect the presence of terrorists hiding inside a building whose architecture is predictably Muslim. Even their breathing, we are told, can be sensed through walls by this wonder gadget.

Then, rather cleverly, the reporter takes us to a Muslim community in Forest Gate, London and we are reminded how the police had conducted a heavy-handed raid on "suspect terrorists" last year, leaving one man shot and wounded. If the police had been able to use these sensors, the reporter suggests, perhaps all that would have been avoidable. Makes you think doesn't it?

We are shown a group of Muslims being introduced to this technology by the reporter who, in an apparent concession to his audience, point out that there had been some immediate complaints about the imagery in the promotional video showing Muslim architecture. "But as soon as the audience were shown the technology being used in Iraq they accepted it," he claims.

He picks on a young member of the audience who says, "We don't need to worry. Anyone can watch us." And then another older man who agrees that this kind of sensor could be used for "legitimate intelligence." Thus, using recorded soundbites in a highly selective way, we see how a Muslim audience is persuaded that these highly intrusive sensors can be used in situations of war or surveillance, either against the enemy or an innocent public who should have nothing to worry about from 'legitimate intelligence'!

Strange, is it not, that a Muslim audience could be persuaded of its use in the Iraq war? You would have expected a massive, negative reaction. But no. Instead, capitalising on guilt feelings among Muslims, they are sold the product as justifiable under wartime conditions. Once this breakthrough is achieved, the audience has been softened-up enough to accept its use by police or 'legitimate intelligence' (whatever that may be!) against a public that should not worry if it has nothing to hide!

This last is regularly used by the promoters of increased surveillance technology and totalitarianization. If you've nothing to hide, why worry? Using an individual's anxiety (ie that he might have something to hide from 'the Law') and the principle of the Big Lie we are bullied into accepting further encroachments on our right to privacy.

The Big Lie is based upon the idea that most everyone tells little lies from time to time. Little lies and dishonesties are, therefore, understandable and acceptable. It's what we all do. But Big Lies, on the other hand, are neither comprehensible or acceptable. So, when subject to a Big Lie, part of us --the part which governs our 'little me', personal values-- shuts down, unable to deal with the enormity of it. But another part keeps running and is forced to come to terms with the unacceptable, to accept that as the message comes to us from a source of authority then it must, has to be, true.

This process is sometimes described by the mind manupilaters in blatant fashion as 'thinking the unthinkable', 'pushing the envelope', or put in another way which remains unsaid, of being coerced into accepting the unacceptable.

This process is called Cognitive Dissonance, the process used here to extract the appropriate soundbites from an audience made to feel guilty about the 'war on terrorism.' Well, that's ok then, we are led to think. If a Muslim audience can accept this new technology (for they do have a problem with terrorism, don't they?) then it should be perfectly acceptable to us. Again, the projection of our guilt (but we do have things in our life we prefer to keep hidden!) onto Muslims (who we know are susceptible to becoming terrorists).

The key-phrase to sum up this event was obtained from a man in his (responsible) 'thirties who agrees that such intrusive technology would be fine when used by "legitimate intelligence," meaning government authorities. Again, the phrase begs so many questions as to what is and isn't legitimate but we aren't given time to dwell on that.

Instead, we are taken to the final, reinforcing summation: there are already 4 million CCTV cameras in Britain so is our private life safe? We are then told (sources not revealed) that 75% want more surveillance and this 'fact' is borne out by an 'expert' from the US National Security Agency, a body with a suitably authoritative name (how many people would know that the NSC is a US government spy agency?)

The promotion is ended with the same upbeat introductory theme.

Neat one, eh? Being of a mischievous, cynical nature I was left wondering if the BBC got a nice little hidden backhander from some Silicon Valley manufacturer for having given airtime to this promotional piece? With government cutbacks on BBC revenue it is increasingly having to privatize and commercialize its operations. So, while doing what the government tells it to do, in this case to promote the totalitarianization of Britain, why not make a few dollars on the side?

And, I couldn't help keep thinking of those Muslims in Forest Gate, my febrile imagination hearing their repeated cries of indignation against the way so many of the audience had left that meeting, feeling that they had been utterly conned into unwittingly cooperating with a foxy Big Brother BBC.

No evidence Iran is making nukes: ElBaradei 29 Oct 2007 Chief UN atomic watchdog Mohamed ElBaradei said overnight he had no evidence Iran was building nuclear weapons and accused US leaders of adding "fuel to the fire" with recent bellicose rhetoric. "I have not received any information that there is a concrete active nuclear weapons program going on right now," the director of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) told CNN.

Head of UN nuclear agency calls on Bush to ease Iran rhetoric 28 Oct 2007 Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, urged the Bush administration Sunday to soften its rhetoric against Tehran, even as a prominent Democratic senator said he feared that U.S. military action was drawing "precariously close." The comments by ElBaradei and Senator Chris Dodd of Connecticut, the senior member of the Foreign Relations Committee, came in response to the regime's recent tough talk, including President [sic] George W. Bush's warning of "World War III" if Tehran obtained nuclear arms, and Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney's caution of "serious consequences" for Iran.

from CLG Newsletter

Death to World Imperialism!

Things are getting worse!
By Dr. H. Salari


Is it possible to live in a world without wars, execution fields, torture chambers and dreadful prisons?

Is it possible to have a world free of exploitation of human by human, colonization, hunger and disease?

Is it possible to live in a world without superstition and corruption, lies and falsification, trickery and hypocrisy, drugs, gangs and sex-slavery networks?

Is it achievable to have a world empty of Weapons of Mass Destruction, atomic bomb intimidation, and artificially made profitable diseases and disasters?

Is it achievable to have a cleaner, less polluted planet with less severe more controllable natural disasters?

And finally, is it possible to live a prosperous and peaceful life, if we could work hard, be God-fearing, piously charitable and generous citizens of this planet?

As we will see not only the answers are negative, but things are getting worse under this dominant economic system called capitalism!

To get to the point let us have some examples: first we begin with the most vulnerable human-beings or the children.

On October 7, 2004, a report by UNICEF announced that, “about ten million children are dying each year in Africa due to preventable causes. The condition of children has worsened since ten years ago.” (News Agencies).

In a report by BBC news, we see that, “in every 27 seconds a child dies from malaria (which is preventable) in Africa and those who survive may have permanent brain damage.” (Oct. 15th, 2004). One year later ABC news reported that, every day about 2000, children are dying from malaria in the world. (Oct. 31st, 2005).

Again UNICEF reported that, “more than half of all children or more than one billion children in the world suffer from extreme deprivation: hunger, disease, lack of education, shelter,…and it is worsening continuously.” (News Agencies, Dec. 9th, 2004).

Nine months later, another report declares that, “nearly half of Asia’s 1.3 billion children are denied basic needs. … they are deprived of either food, safe drinking water, health care or shelter.” (BBC News, Aug. 22nd, 2005).

In Canada, which is a rich industrialized country, “one of every six children lives under the poverty line. Child poverty has increased in recent years.” (Report from Campaign 2000 Coalition, narrated by CBC News, Nov. 24th, 2004).

Secondly, referring to the whole population, it is worthy to mention that, “more than ten million people are dying from AIDS and starvation, right now in sub-Saharan Africa and it is worsening.” (News Agencies, Oct. 7th, 2005).

In the U.S. “in year 2000, there were 31.1 million people officially classified as poor. In 2004 the number of poor people was 37 million, up 12.7%, from four years ago.” (News Agencies, Aug. 30th, 2005).

A report by BBC news says, “50% of Republic of Georgia’s population live under the poverty line (June 29th, 2005). And in Russia one-fourth of the population are classified as poor. (CTV News, Oct. 30th, 2005).

In Poland unemployment rate is about 20%, and there is no hope to ease. (News Agencies, June 23rd, 2005). In the same country, coal-miners who were laid-off, jump over the running trains, filch coals and throw them on the surrounding fields, where their waiting companions collect and sell them later in the markets to feed their hungry families. More than half of the coal-miners were laid-off since the collapse of ex-socialist regime. (A Documentary by BBC News, Aug. 24th, 2005).

Thirdly, on the workers’ subject, it is interesting to know that the number of unionized workers (the workers whom to some extent can defend their rights through the collective agreements), has decreased continuously all around the world, leaving them totally unprotected against capitalist exploitation. For instance, according to the U.S. government statistics, 12.5% of all U.S. workers and 8% of private sector workers are union members. In the 1950s and 1960s about a third of all workers were unionized. (BBC News, July 25th, 2005).

While in the previous decades, workers struggled to increase their salaries and benefits, nowadays they fight to keep their jobs and prevent their salary and benefit cuts.

As BBC reports, U.S. Airways asked for labour cuts to prevent bankruptcy. (Dec 30th, 2004). And Bombardier a Montreal-Canada based, mostly aircraft-maker, announced that it must cut wages or lay-off 3000 workers. (CBC News, May 7th, 2003).

Recently on Monday October 17th, 2005, General Motors, the world’s biggest car-maker, signed an initial agreement with the United Auto Workers union to reduce its costly healthcare expenses. This agreement will affect about 750,000 retirees, current worker and their dependents in the U.S.. This move will be replicated by other car-maker companies like Ford, DaimlerChrysler and so on. (News Agencies). What an amazing solution! But a wise and pro-people solution is the nationalization of these companies. As a result, we will have a secure life for workers and their families, and if it follows by the creation of a universal public transport system, there will be at least less pollution, less monster hurricanes, less lung cancer, less osteoporosis etc, etc. In the case of costly healthcare, again a wise and humane solution is to implement a universal public healthcare; as a result none will fear an illness.

Fourthly, looking at the global situation, “a U.N. report has found that the world is more unequal today than it was ten years ago,… Liberalization of economy does not help the poor.” (BBC News. Aug. 25th, 2005).

A statement by U.N. Human Development Report 2005, says, “Many of the world’s poorest countries are doing worse in 2005, than they were fifteen years ago, the gap between rich and poor peoples in each individual country is widening, and inequalities are increasing.” (News Agencies. Sept. 7th, 2005).

But not all statistics are about the failure of capitalism. As ABC News broadcasted, “440 million sites of pornography are on the net.” (July 27th, 2005). And these sites are increasing in number by hours and minutes; suppose that if only one person works on each site, capitalism can claim, that it has finally “solved” the problem of unemployment.

In another report, we hear that a sex slavery network is discovered in the U.K. Each year at least 1400 women, mostly East Europeans are brought to this country to work in this growing industry. (News Agencies, Oct. 2nd, 2005). Another sign of booming capitalism!

Not irrelevant to the previous subject, we read that: in a court in France, it was revealed that children are sold to the rings of pedophiles for a small amount of money or even for only a cigarette. (BBC News. July 27th, 2005). These things are happening in the middle of Europe, in France, in the turn of the 21st century. In the middle of a newly forming imperialist power called E.U.

What more can we expect from this final stage of capitalism: imperialism?

Every human has only one chance to live, and this life turns miserable because of exploitation of man by man and through the plunder of natural resources of the planet which belong to everyone and their future generations.

To end this vicious cycle of catastrophes, people have to come together and organize. The first target of these new-type organizations must be the nationalization of big companies with the preference to those which are urgently vital for the well-being of the people.

This is only the first step towards building a humane society, and each step will have to be carried out by democratically elected bodies, as long as democratic means are possible!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

British Injustice System
from SACC Website

Today [23 Oct 2007] I witnessed a serious crime. It was committed in broad daylight in front of fifty or so witnesses in the High Court in Edinburgh, Scotland. The perpetrator of this crime was the British State which, through a judge, Lord Carloway, sentenced Mohammed Atif Siddique, a young Muslim male, aged 21 years, to 8 years imprisonment. He was sentenced under the provisions of British anti-terror laws for the heinous act of browsing various Islamist websites and expressing his sympathies with Al Qaeda, the Iraqi Resistance, and the Palestinian Intifada to a few of his fellow students at the university at which he was studying.

Now Read on

The New McCarthyism
by LARRY COHLER-ESSES from the November 12, 2007 issue of The Nation

Meet Professor Nadia Abu El-Haj, a notorious Barnard College professor now up for tenure who:

§ claims the ancient Israelite kingdoms are a "pure political fabrication,"

§ denies the Romans destroyed Jerusalem in 70 CE and instead blames its destruction on the Jews,

§ does not speak or read Hebrew yet had the temerity to publish a book on Israeli archaeology that demanded such expertise,

§ is so ignorant of her topic that she quotes one archaeologist on how a dig might have damaged the ancient palaces of Solomon--oblivious to the fact that those palaces, if they existed, were far from the site in question.

None of these charges are true. You could look it up. I did, in El-Haj's book Facts on the Ground, about which these charges are made. The statements for which a network of right-wing critics assail her book are not there.

I asked Paula Stern, the Barnard alum who has organized an online petition demanding that El-Haj be denied tenure, how she squared her petition's charges with El-Haj's book. "The petition takes pieces of criticisms from experts. It may not be quoted 100 percent accurate," she admitted. Still, more than 2,500 people, including many Barnard and Columbia alumni, have signed on to its claims. Tellingly, Stern, who now lives in the West Bank, voiced astonishment at being asked to justify her charges in terms of what El-Haj's book actually says. "I've spoken to many newspapers," she said. "No one has done what you've done."

I looked that up, too. In the key media venues, at least, Stern was right; and not just with regard to her target. In case after case, a network of right-wing activists has started an online furor based on a mélange of distorted or provably false charges against someone involved in Middle East studies. They supported these charges with quotes yanked out of context or entirely made up and wielded a broad brush of guilt by association. Right-wing media megaphoned the charges, stoking the furor. And mainstream media ultimately noticed and responded, often focusing their stories on the furor rather than the facts.

Under pressure from these assaults, some academic institutions buckle and a professor's career is derailed; in other cases it is permanently stained. More insidious, even when tenure puts an academic beyond the reach of his or her assailants, more vulnerable junior faculty and grad students take note. "There certainly is a sense among faculty and grad students that they're being watched, monitored," said Zachary Lockman, president of the Middle East Studies Association. "People are always looking over their shoulder, feeling that whatever they say--in accurate or, more likely, distorted form--can end up on a website. It definitely has a chilling effect."

This is the modus operandi of the New McCarthyism. It targets a new enemy for our era: Muslims, Arabs and others in the Middle East field who are identified as stepping over an unstated line in criticizing Israel, as radical Islamists, as just plain radical or as in some way sympathetic to terrorists. Its purveyors include Campus Watch, run by Arab studies scholar Daniel Pipes; the David Project, supported by the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Foundation; and David Horowitz's FrontPage Magazine (in October Horowitz organized an "Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week" on campuses across the nation).

Their efforts often appear to be linked. As first noted by blogger Richard Silverstein, the earliest web attack on El-Haj's book was posted simultaneously by Campus Watch and FrontPage, in October 2005. Alexander Joffe, identified as a professor at SUNY, Purchase, published a harshly negative review of the book in The Journal of Near Eastern Studies that same month. The prestigious journal did not note--and was not informed--that he was then director of Campus Watch. Soon after, he became research director for the David Project. Less prominent researchers like Stern, the online PipeLine News and writers such as Beila Rabinowitz and William Mayer provide raw material to the more well-known portals, such as Pipes and Horowitz. Pipes's and Horowitz's material is, in turn, picked up by key conservative papers like the New York Post and New York Sun.

There is an undeniable security threat, but as in the 1950s the New McCarthyites use it as a base for demagogy. Their distinguishing feature is not concern about this threat but cynical indifference to the truth or decency of their charges. Take the case of Debbie Almontaser, the New York City public high school principal forced to resign in August as head of a new Arabic/English secondary school. The furor revolved around her attempt in an interview with the Post to explain the meaning of, rather than simply condemn, T-shirts bearing the words Intifada NYC. This provoked a firestorm. United Federation of Teachers chief Randi Weingarten, a key supporter of Almontaser's school, condemned her in a letter to the Post. The next day Almontaser resigned--a move publicly welcomed by Schools Chancellor Joel Klein and Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Almontaser has since stated she was told to resign or the school, which she founded, would be closed.

In its obscuring, anodyne postmortem on the affair, the New York Times vaguely described Almontaser as a victim of the city's "treacherous ethnic and ideological political currents" rather than of specific charges that were demonstrably false--like Pipes's widely publicized claim, based on a truncated quotation, that she denied Muslims or Arabs were involved in the 9/11 attacks. The Times report on El-Haj adopted a similar hands-off stance, simply quoting supporters and attackers. It did not once compare the activists' charges with what El-Haj actually said in her book.

As it happens, Almontaser's forced resignation was the city Education Department's second dive in the face of pressure from the New McCarthyites. Three years ago it dismissed Professor Rashid Khalidi, the esteemed director of Columbia's Middle East Institute, from lecturing teachers enrolled in professional development courses. The dismissal came in response to a Sun article claiming Khalidi had denounced Israel as "a 'racist' state with an 'apartheid system.'" Khalidi denied the quote fragments as they were used in the story. "I do not think Zionism is racist," he told the Forward. "When we talk about some of the contemporary laws, there are policies that I consider racist and discriminatory." Asked if the department had verified Khalidi's purported remarks before dismissing him, a department spokesman avoided answering Times columnist Joyce Purnick.

Khalidi still has his day job, as does--so far--a nontenured Columbia colleague, Joseph Massad, who according to a special school investigative committee was falsely accused several years ago of discriminating against Jewish and Israeli students. The same cannot be said for Norman Finkelstein, who was terminated at Chicago's DePaul University in September after the school's president--in a rare departure from standard procedure--rejected the overwhelming tenure approval Finkelstein had received at both the departmental and college levels. Finkelstein's scholarly work has accused Jewish groups of exploiting the Holocaust and Israel of egregious human rights violations. He had incurred the special wrath of Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, whose book defending Israel Finkelstein had devoted an entire book to savaging. Dershowitz, in turn, tried unsuccessfully to prevent the University of California Press from publishing Finkelstein's book, and sent Finkelstein's tenure committees a dossier that he said documented his "most egregious academic sins, and especially his outright lies, misquotations, and distortions." Clearly, the tenure committees were not impressed by Dershowitz's claims. DePaul president Dennis Holtschneider, for his part, denied that Dershowitz's intervention affected his decision.

Beshara Doumani, a University of California history professor, has mapped the systemic strategy of the New McCarthyism, highlighting that more than just its targets are new. First and foremost, private advocacy groups, not Congressional committees, are by and large today's means of pressuring academic administrations--at least, so far. These groups often retain important ties to government figures. But they are most focused on organizing alumni and students, with an eye toward generating public outrage and eventually government and donor pressure.

"I'm worried about untenured professors trying to get tenure," said Doumani, co-chair of the Middle East Studies Association's Committee on Academic Freedom. "I'm worried about entire departments saying, 'We need people in Middle East positions, but we're not going to hire certain kinds of people. It involves too much headache, too much risk.' How do you quantify that? You can't. But it's going around. I can tell you, it's a real issue."

Saturday, October 27, 2007

'Many in the US Military Think Bush and Cheney Are Out of Control'

In an interview with SPIEGEL ONLINE, the Amsterdam-based military historian Gabriel Kolko talks about the prospect of war with Iran and argues that many in the US military now view the White House as being 'out of control.'

Read it here

Friday, October 26, 2007

Russia condemns U.S. missile shield at NATO meeting

NOORDWIJK, Holland, October 25.—Russia affirmed in a NATO meeting here today that it is not happy about the United States wanting Moscow to accept the extension of the U.S. missile shield to Eastern Europe, the AFP reports.

Russia condemns U.S. missile shield at NATO meeting"None of the proposals are acceptable to us. Our position remains the same," said Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov, after meeting with his counterparts from the 26 member countries of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

The United States has been negotiating for 12 months to install 10 anti-missile systems in Poland and a radar in the Czech Republic, prompting the firm opposition of Russia, which perceives a threat to its vital interests.

"In terms of relations between Russia and NATO, there are a number of questions on which we do not agree. These are primarily related to the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) and with the missile shield," Serdyukov emphasized.

Translated by Granma International

Real News Debate: Why is the US threatening Iran?
What is behind President Bush's warning about WW III?


Is the US call to isolate Iran motivated by opposition to an oil-power that contends for regional influence, or fear of an Iranian nuclear bomb?

Our first Real News Debate features Jonathan Kay and Leo Panich.

Jonathan Kay is a columnist and Comment Pages Editor of the National Post newspaper. Kay is a regular contributor to Commentary magazine and the New York Post. His articles have appeared in Harper's Magazine, The New Yorker, The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune, The Los Angeles Times and various other publications.

Leo Panich is the Canada Research Chair in Comparative Political Economy and a Distinguished Research Professor of Political Science at York University in Toronto. Panich is also the author of Global Capitalism and American Empire.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

UN expert reveals extent of Israel’s rights abuses

"Many of Israel's laws and practices violate the 1966 Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Racial Discrimination," UN human rights envoy John Dugard said.

Some Israelis agree with Mr Dugard that
the occupation is fuelling Palestinian resistance

Amina Anderson
Aljazeera Magazine

It's highly unlikely to hear fierce criticism against Israel or the United States from somebody with a serious job title. But John Dugard, the special rapporteur to the UN Human Rights Council for the Palestinian territories, proved otherwise.

Earlier this year, the retired South African law professor wrote a report for the UN General Assembly in which he compared Israel’s actions to those of apartheid South Africa.

According to the BBC, the word “apartheid" appeared 24 times in the 24-page report.

"It is difficult to resist the conclusion that many of Israel's laws and practices violate the 1966 Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Racial Discrimination," the report said.

Although Dugard has been visiting the occupied West Bank and Gaza for the past seven years, his position as a UN human rights monitor doesn’t allow him to make any decisions on UN policy; only to offer recommendations and critical analysis.

But now it seems that Mr Dugard is fed up. He used to accuse Israel of collectively punishing the Palestinians, but now he also holds the international community, and the United Nations itself, responsible for the Palestinians’ suffering.

A few week ago, Mr Dugard was reported to have criticised the UN Secretary General for failing to stand up to Israel. In a recent interview with the BBC, he said that his catalogues of what he sees as Israeli human rights abuses in the occupied Palestinian territories fall on "deaf ears" in the Secretary General's office.

He also said that he would urge the United Nations to withdraw from the "Quartet" of Middle East mediators -- which includes the U.S., Russia, EU and UN -- unless it properly addresses Palestinian human rights.

"In my most recent report to the General Assembly, which I will present later this month, I will suggest that the Secretary General withdraw the UN from the Quartet, if the Quartet fails to have regard to the human rights situation in the Palestinian Territories," he told the BBC.

Instead of overseeing the “peace process” between the Israelis and the Palestinians, the Quartet is hampering the Palestinian right to self-determination, Mr Dugard says.

His argument is not just that the Quartet is failing to heal the rift between the resistance group Hamas, which controls Gaza, and President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah faction, but that the UN, through the Quartet, is siding with the president’s party.

“The weak response by the quartet is because it’s heavily influenced" by the U.S.,” he said. “The UN is not playing the role of an objective mediator that behoves it.”

Mr Dugard also warned that Palestinian leaders have high hopes about next month’s peace conference with the Israelis. He fears that a third intifada, or uprising, could be unleashed if the Palestinians’ expectations are not met.

According to the BBC, many Western diplomats and UN officials based in the Middle East agree with Mr Dugard’s political analysis, but most of them are not as outspoken as him.

Even inside Israel, many believe that the occupation has distorted and damaged Israel’s global image. Some Israelis also agree with Mr Dugard that the occupation is fuelling the Palestinian resistance.

Mr Dugard even compared the actions of Palestinian fighters to those of the French Resistance during World War II.

"History is replete with examples of populations that have resisted military occupation," he said. "I can't see why one shouldn't draw these analogies."


The Israel Lobby targets Haaretz, read it here

Perestroika: James Fallows Says "Mainly... Jewish" Faction Pushes for Iran Showdown, read it here

Growing Western Totalitarianism: Australia's Shameful PM


Of course, Australia is not alone in having been given the cue to totalitarianize its society in the interests of the New World Odour.

The draconian detention laws described in Australia are really not much different to those in Britain where toad-like judges, politicised by the Blair/Brown duo, bang-up brown-skinned Brits for thought crimes on the slightest excuse.

Prisoners of Mother England, indeed. We're all pommies now!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Scottish student receives eight years for terror offences

By Rich Bowden, M&C Staff Writer Oct 23, 2007

(M&C) - A Scottish Muslim student has been jailed for eight years for providing instructions on bomb-making over the internet and possessing terror-related materials.

Mohammed Atif Siddique, 21, was sentenced by Judge Lord Carloway who said, "You told fellow college students that you intended to become a terrorist and one of your targets would be central Glasgow."

Siddique was detained with his uncle last year as he was about to travel to Pakistan. He denied he was a terrorist saying he had just obtained the material as research to try to find out "why young Muslim men like him act the way they do".

Siddique also shows videos of suicide bombings and beheadings to classmates at Glasgow Metropolitan College.

However he received support from the civil rights organisation Scotland Against Criminalising Communities who said in a statement the trial was a "travesty of justice" and added, "Even under our Kafka-esque laws it makes no sense to call this young man a terrorist, and it is to be hoped that the argument will be taken successfully to the appeal court."

Siddique is believed to be Scotland's first home-grown Islamic terrorist.


Rory says:

"Home-grown terrorist," my ass.

This guy has been given 8 years for thought-crimes and because he is a brown-skinned Muslim of Pakistani or Bangladeshi descent.

Several white Brits, including the BNP bomb-makers, have been let off lightly for much worse offences.

This disgraceful abuse of the law by an intolerant member of Britain's ruling classes, Lord Carloway, a leftover of Victorian England, exposes British law to be racist and selective in its victims.

Fascist Britain is here for all to see.


Press Release from Scotland Against Criminalising Communities (SACC)
5.30pm Tuesday 23 Oct 2007
For immediate release
Sentencing of Mohammed Atif Siddique

At Edinburgh High Court today, Lord Carloway sentenced Mohammed Atif Siddique - convicted last month of "terrorism" offences - to a total of 8 years in jail. The sentence is to run from the time Mr Siddique was first taken into custody.

And in a surprise development, the judge criticised Mr Siddique's solicitor, Aamer Anwar, over a statement he released on the day of Mr Siddique's conviction. The judge is considering whether to initiate contempt proceedings against Aamer Anwar. Such a move would be unprecedented and would be sure to send shock waves through the legal profession.

Speaking alongside Aamer Aamer outside the court, Mr Asif Siddique (Atif Siddique's uncle) said that he rejected the judge's criticisms and had confidence in Aamer Anwar.Aamer Anwar said that Mohammed Atif Siddique will be making an appeal.

SACC is disappointed at the length of the sentence imposed on Mr Siddique. The activities for which he was convicted were no more than "thought crimes" and have harmed no one. Like may people, we had hoped that this would be reflected in a much lighter sentence.

In passing sentence, the judge said that the new offences created by the terrorism acts were "there to protect the public" and had been "designed by Parliament to stop or reduce the risk of terrorist outrages" before a terrorist plot reaches the stage where a common-law offence has been committed.

SACC has been concerned over Mr Siddique's case ever since the massive police raid on the Siddique family home in April last year. We don't believe that anyone should have to face criminal charges over the sort of activities that Mr Siddique was convicted for.

Speaking before the sentence was announced, Professor David Miller of Strathclyde University - an expert on terrorism, spin and propaganda - said:

"Even the BBC has classed this case as potentially a case of 'thought crime' There is an establishment witchhunt against any form of dissent on British foreign policy. It is important that democrats stand up for freedom of speech"

Referring to comments that Mr Siddique had been guilty of youthful folly, Massoud Shadjareh, Chair of Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC), said earler this week:

"The stupidity of neither youth nor age and its reflection in reading material, particularly on-line should not be criminalised. The majority of us may reject certain sentiments but we must beware of utilising the tools of state and particularly the criminal justice system to deal with ideas we find unpalatable. This sets a dangerous precedent."

Richard Haley, Secretary of SACC, commented:

"Anyone who wants to know what is really going on in Iraq has to pick their way through the reports of independent journalists, anecdotes from people with family in Iraq and varied and sometimes problematic web postings from political groups and fighters in Iraq. There is no other way, since the mainstream media largely duck the real issues of the occupation. The Siddique case means that anyone doing this will have to live in fear of prosecution. Especially if they become upset by what they find, and especially if they are Muslim."

John McManus, of the Miscarriages Organisation (MOJO), Scotland, is also worried by the case. He says:

"Comparisons of the Irish situation in the 70s to the attack on the Muslim community today can't be avoided. What is even more worrying under this climate of fear, are the new laws that have been passed, where you can be convicted not for something you did, but for something you might do. By going down this road it allows those in authority to cherry pick who they deem a threat. Today it's the Muslim community, who knows who it will be tomorrow.

SACC is seriously concerned at the criticism directed at Mr Siddique's lawyer, Aamer Anwar, for issuing a statement that appeared to question the fairness of the trial. Speaking on behalf of Aamer Anwar, Donald Findlay QC said that the statement was in fact from Mohammed Atif Siddique and had been issue on his express instructions.

In SACC's view the statement issued by Aamer Anwar is no more than the plain truth.

Richard Haley said

"I, like many others who have followed the case, believe that the evidence relating to Mohammed Atif Siddique's possession of computer files and related materials shows only that he was guilty of doing what millions of young people do every day, looking for answers on the internet. The jury, unfortunately, took a different view. But it needs to be shouted from the rooftops that the view that Mohammed Atif Siddique took of the trial, as set out in the statement from his lawyer, is a reasonable one and raises issues of immense importance for our society."

The possibility that Aamer Anwar may have to face contempt proceedings is deeply worrying.

He has earned a reputation as perhaps the most visible and effective lawyer in Scotland for cases with a political flavour, especially when they touch on racism, civil liberties and the wars in the Middle East. He has represented asylum-seekers, victims of racist violence and "suspected terrorists." He helped protestors negotiate a way to the G8 Summit at Gleneagles, and he defended demonstrators arrested during police attempts to shut down the G8 protests.

Anyone who wants a better world - trade unionist, anti-war activist or anti-racism campaigner - knows that one day they might have to confront the security state across a courtroom, and that they will need a courageous lawyer. We should be very worried indeed if the effect of this case is that lawyers become too frightened to do this kind of work properly.
SACC, 22 Oct 2007

Notes for editors
Professor David Miller can be contacted for comment on 07786927551
IHRC can be contacted for comment on 02089044222
John McManus can be contacted for comment on 07977047794
Richard Haley can be contacted on 07936432519 or email

Eurosocialist and Antifascist

My readers will have noticed by now that this blog is headed by the European flag under which is stated that Chimes of Freedom is both Eurosocialist and Antifascist.

Non-British readers may not be aware of the ongoing campaign by the extreme Right against Britain's membership of the European Union. These Europhobes --more kindly described as Eurosceptics-- are a motley group of Little Englanders, mainly of a xenophobic and reactionary right persuasion.

But, having lost an Empire and any sense of raison d'etre, it is not only the usual blimpish right that lays a claim to exercise British xenophobia. The malaise stretches right across the social and political spectrum to include a lot of lefties lost in a political wilderness and without an ideological home.

Whereas the concept of a united, European Left is both a popular and normal phenomenon in continental Europe, the British Left has retained its traditional aloofness and pukka attitudes by not joining that common European front. 'Europe' is referred to as 'somewhere over there' as if Britain is somehow separated from Europe.

Of course this is nonsense. Britain is and has always been indivisibly part of Europe in its geography, its culture, its religion, its politics and its language. Only in a strangely schizophrenic British attitude of mind will you find Britain to be a separate entity, where when fog obscures the Channel it is the Continent that is cut off, not this overcrowded little island.

And due, no doubt, to the dumbing-down of the British mainstream media (MSM) even the Continent is no longer referred to as such. It has become 'Europe', something which Britain is not part of. The traditionally conservative outlook of the Brit has become so insular it would rather cut off all contact with the non-English speaking world to live in an artificial bubble of unreality which it hopes will be forever England.

It is part of a serious social malaise that is now so advanced it is eating at the imperial foundations upon which the very United Kingdom itself was built. Britain is in post-imperial collapse and in denial, projecting instead its unhappiness with itself on 'Europe' and immigration.

This social malaise (or is psychosis a more appropriate description?) is now so widespread that Britain provides the Basil Fawlty-type xenophobic Right with a breeding ground for the narrow-minded, petty bourgeois attitudes that Mrs Thatcher implanted in the susceptible British psyche.

The so-called demand for what is referred to as a referendum on Europe perfectly describes the spell of reactionary-minded xenophobia the British (predominantly the English) have fallen under. Disguised by a blimpish indignation against having to use metric measurements instead of imperial ones and driving 'on the wrong side of the road' (it appears that most of the world has been driving on the wrong side) this xenophobia is currently expressing itself as (i) Europhobia, (ii) a general hostility towards immigration, and (iii) an Islamophobia fuelled by the Bush/Blair fake 'War on Terror'.


As an ex-colonial Brit, I am able to gauge and understand the British mentality both from a peculiarly British view of things as well as to perceive it from an arm's-length-view of one who still has a colonial memory of being at the receiving end of British attitudes.

The world-famous Canadian author of The English Patient, Michael Ondaatje, is a fellow expatriate of mine. His father, Mervyn, a planter in the old colonial Ceylon of the 1930's, was a pal of my old man who was also a planter. The Ondaatjes used to visit my family from time to time and my elder sisters have a memory of Michael as a rather tubby, aloof little chap who used to love scoffing on a can of condensed milk.

Michael Ondaatje

In his book, Running in the Family, Michael Ondaatje writes of an occasion when Mervyn, who rather worse for drink, held up the Colombo to Kandy train by running along the top to the engine, getting the driver drunk on arrack, leaping off the hotplate to strip off his clothes and run naked into a tunnel from whence he refused to emerge, thereby playing havoc with the Ceylon Government Railways' wartime schedule.

But why did a Ceylon Army Light Infantry officer have to run along the top of the train?

Because, as a dusky Eurasian, he with every other non-white officer was forbidden to walk through the train's corridors where there were compartments occupied by pukka white officers of the stiff upper lip British raj. That kind of mixing simply wouldn't do. It just wasn't British.

Eurasians of my ilk grew up with a memory of the precious white attitudes of Brits who walked around Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) with a permanent, invisible wall of separateness that kept them in a constant state of undeclared apartheid from the rest of the dark-skinned rabble. Fortunately for me, any fake ideas of British or white superiority that might have been implanted within by colonial conditioning was soon knocked out in the nationalist upsurge of the 1950's when British colonialism was thrown unceremoniously out of the window.

That nationalist reaction to four hundred years of colonial rule, first by the Portuguese, then by the Dutch and finally by the English, was understandable. But sadly, like all extreme reactions, it too was destructive leading to the fifty-year civil war that Sri Lanka experiences to this day. But that's another story.


Returning to the white, pukka attitudes of the British mentality: really, nothing has changed very much since it lost its Empire. The pukka attitudes simply submerged into a quite artificial, Basil Fawlty-type 'Britishness' and continued to emerge as a desperate distaste and even hostility towards 'coloureds', foreigners in general and now, together with the rest of Europe, as Islamophobia.

But none of these things can be admitted to. The British believe themselves to be far too tolerant and fair-minded for that. So they have to be thinly disguised by entirely nonsensical rationales such as a pretend 'Euroscepticism' which hides a fully-blown Europhobic, xenophobia.

A xenophobia which is a sign of an endemic mental weakness or malaise, exposing Britain as the perennial sick man of Europe. A sickness which right-wing politicians, 'neo-liberals', Atlanticists and Washington's Neocon, closet fascists fully use to their advantage to drive a wedge between Britain and the rest of the European Union.

It is highly significant that an anti-EU Referendum rally is to be held in London next week, preceded the day before by the blimpish racists of the No Sharia Here SIOE, led by the Fawlty-like Stephen Gash and masterminded by the ubiquitous political opportunist, the Danish Anders Gravers. You can be sure that a lot of the Islamophobes marching on October 26 will also be marching in the EU Referendum rally. The same petty-bourgeois closet-racists are behind both Islamophobia and Europhobia.

Stephen Gash out of Fawlty Towers

And these phobic types are being supported by media tyrants like Rupert Murdoch who, like the criminal Conrad Black, not only support the Bush fascists but would have Britain out of the EU and into the economic hegemony of the North American Free Trade Association (NAFTA).

Ever since the end of WWII, Britain has been under the military hegemony of the US and its foreign policy. During the Thatcher years, Britain became 'Airstrip One', a forward base for US imperialism and potential nuclear attack in a European Theatre of War. But it remained, on the whole, within the economic hegemony of the European Community, later Union.

Thatcher never like that idea and cashed-in on the natural anti-European sentiments of Britain's Basil Fawlty mentality by keeping Britain out of the Euro and the Maastricht treaty.

Homegrown xenophobic, Europhobia also provided the Thatcherites and their successors, the Blair/Brownites, with the political clout to opt out of various areas of European legislation meant to protect the rights of trades unions and, through the Working Directive, to provide a maximum limit of 48 hours to the working week.

Using Newspeak and by turning reality on its head, this socially progressive legislation by the European Union was presented to a wholly prejudiced and tranced-out British audience as somehow a threat to British liberties! And this in a country which remains the historical cradle of trades unionism and the struggle for a 40-hour week which, when finally obtained, was done in by Thatcher and her peculiarly British form of fascism.

Thus, in today's dark ages, even a 48-hour week is presented by British capitalists as something that we progressive Brits would rather not have! And, together with having opted out of that social legislation, the closet-fascists and their Tory fellow-travellers in the Cameron party of Neocons would have us give away our human rights as well, the Human Rights Act of 1999 being presented by Britain's lying media as something which militates against and threatens our human rights!

A Human Rights Act, by the way, which it took 49 years for the complacent Brits to get around to legislate into its own laws, such was the reluctance of the British ruling classes to deal with anything that smacked of rights for the lower classes! And now the Brits are being conned into believing that 'Europe threatens its independence'! In the 51st State what independence does Britain have? The British bubble of unreality again!

Reich Fieldmarshall Hermann Goering was right in one thing at least when he predicted in 1940 that in twenty years time Britain would become an overcrowded little island living on the glories of its past.

Overcrowded, yes. But not by immigrants. By a breakdown of infrastructure and public transport and an overpopulation of private transport. Living on the glories of its past, yes. But where the Neocon fascists in Washington are calculatedly using British xenophobia, nostalgia and an entirely false belief in its independence to stir-up racism, religious hate and persecution and to persuade a generation of British working people, ignorant of their past struggles, to forsake all their hard-earned rights by turning its back on protective European social legislation.

The call for a Referendum is a fake, carefully packaged by the Right to sound as if it were something to do with free speech. The same free speech which the Right constantly abuse by using it to promote xenophobia, race hate and to attack the people's social and civil rights.

It is for these reasons that Chimes of Freedom remains solidly Eurosocialist, in defence of the people's rights, and Antifascist against the pukka white nonsense of xenophobia and imperialist racism.

Monday, October 22, 2007

A catalogue of abuse
Political leaders as much as military bosses need to face up to our brutal detention policy in Iraq

Phil Shiner
Friday October 19, 2007
The Guardian

What will it take for our government to face the awful facts of British detention policy in Iraq? Evidence now publicly available proves that UK forces had a systematic policy that led to the execution of scores of Iraqis in detention, and the torture of countless more. But most people remain blissfully unaware of the truth, while the government chooses to ignore it ...

Read on

Grossman said the study shows a pattern
practiced by hundreds and thousands.

Israelis Enjoy Torturing Palestinians

CAIRO — Israeli soldiers enjoy torturing Palestinians, both men and women, and many of them use it to discharge energy, according to a recent study by an Israeli psychologist.

Read it here

It’s the Oil
Jim Holt
London Review of Books

Iraq is ‘unwinnable’, a ‘quagmire’, a ‘fiasco’: so goes the received opinion. But there is good reason to think that, from the Bush-Cheney perspective, it is none of these things. Indeed, the US may be ‘stuck’ precisely where Bush et al want it to be, which is why there is no ‘exit strategy’.

Now read on


(Download PDF version)

To advance reconciliation between Jews and Roman Catholics, Pope John Paul II promised to allow scholars to examine Vatican’s secret archives for its possible connection to the holocaust. One of the first scholars given permission to examine these archives is Prof. David I. Kertzer. His findings are published in his book “THE POPES AGAINST THE JEWS: VATICAN’S ROLE IN THE RISE OF MODERN ANTI-SEMITISM.” In one of the chapters, Prof. Kertzer conducts a detailed analysis of more than 36 anti-Judaism and anti-Jewish articles written by the Jesuits. These articles, in time, became the foundation of modern anti-Semitism, and a catalyst to the holocaust.

To keep alive the Papal tradition of hate for non-Roman Catholic religions, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, right after becoming Pope Benedict XVI, selected handful of elite Jesuits as his “special papal troops” to combat the rise of Islam in Europe.[1] The chief amongst them is one Egyptian Coptic Jesuit Father Samir Khalil Samir. His articles and interviews are spread all over Catholic-centric news portals. This paper briefly explores the history of Jesuits, their role as “papal shock troops,” and a critical analysis of Father Samir’s anti-Islam, anti-Muslim writings.

Continued here

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Employees Expose Murdoch's FOX NEWS Distortions


Now how about a similar exposé by the lying BBC's employees?

Palestinians’ Lives Invisible to Israelis
by Edward Mast

On a visit to Tel Aviv last month, I asked some Israeli friends what people in Israel were saying about the Palestinian situation. Not much, they told me. Israelis are more concerned about the corruption charges against Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, coming on the heels of corruption charges against previous governments. Palestinians and their issues, my friends told me, are becoming more and more invisible to the Israeli people.

Palestinian lives are kept invisible in David Brumer’s Oct. 10 guest column, “Despite concerns, Israel a vibrant country.” Also invisible are Israel’s military occupation and the ongoing takeover of Palestinian land. If Brumer had traveled to the other side of the wall, as I did, he could have witnessed the many ways that the Israeli occupation crushes people with poverty, violence and injustice.


Israel shaken by Troops' Tales of Brutality against Palestinians