Doug's Darkworld

War, Science, and Philosophy in a Fractured World.

Posts Tagged ‘Israel

Pillar of Lies

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Yes, this image isn’t completely fair. Still, it’s not that far off. Only a tiny handful of people are killed and injured by rockets fired from Gaza. Vastly more people are killed and injured by IDF violence in the occupied territories. That’s because Israel has a vast array of modern weaponry at its disposal, they are one of the world’s great military powers. The Gazans have hand weapons and home made rockets and mortars. So that’s the first lie that is perpetuated by the media, that this is is some sort of conflict between equals. No, they aren’t equal in any sense of the word. This goes hand-in-hand with the lie that Israel and the Palestinians in the occupied territories are neighbours, and this is some sort of squabble between two regions, and that Israel is “defending its borders.” No, Israel is not “defending its borders,” since the occupied territories lie within Israel’s borders. That’s why they are called the occupied territories, Israel invaded and occupied them in 1967, and since no one wanted them back, they are stuck with them. Israel created the current situation with the Palestinians in the occupied territories, they aren’t some hapless victim.

There are lots of lies in this situation. Israel was based on lies, known as propaganda in the modern parlance. The very first lie set the tone for what was to follow. This was the story that the 700,000 Palestinians who fled what is now Israel in 1948 did so because the Arab governments told them to flee. Even Israeli historians now admit this was a fabrication from beginning to end, Arab governments did no such thing. (Why the f**k would they, no nation wants refuges flooding into its country.) The Palestinians fled because there was a war going on, which people always do when there’s a war. Israel then not only refused to allow them to return, they stole their homes and businesses, and deny to this day that a terrible crime was committed. In fact it’s illegal to commemorate the Nabka, the 1948 Palestinian exodus, in Israel. When one flees their legal residence during a war, one does not magically give up one’s residency. That’s one of the things so infuriating about the “the Arab governments told them to flee” lie, even if was true, so what? It wouldn’t magically change the law, the Palestinians that fled what became Israel were legal residents, and held legal title to their homes and property.

It went downhill from there. One common lie is that “there is no such thing as a the Palestinian people.” There are many permutations to this, basically boiling down the the racist attitude that the Palestinians are Arabs so they should go live in Arab countries. Again, the beauty of this lie is that even it it’s true, there never was a nation called Palestine, so what? The Palestinians living in Palestine were legal residents of the land, because they aren’t mentioned in the Old Testament doesn’t magically make it OK to steal their homes and property. A codicil to this lie is the “no partner for peace” lie. This is the idea that for one reason or another, none of the Palestinian leaders are “fit” to negotiate with. Israel not only chooses its own leaders, why, they are so superior, they can chose what leaders are appropriate for the benighted Palestinians! And of course none of the Palestinian leaders ever lives up to Israel’s standards, convenient, nu? It’s Israel that refuses to negotiate in good faith, not the Palestinians.

Notice a theme here? Racism. Both of these lies are much easier to believe if one thinks that Muslims/Arabs are somehow less than fully civilized, or even less than fully human. This comes out clearly in lie three, the big lie, the one repeated so often that much of western humanity believes it implicitly. And this lie is simple: “Jews are peaceful, Palestinians are violent.” I hardly even know what to say about this. Anyone who believes it is a racist for starters. Humans are violent, and there aren’t really any exceptions. Israel especially isn’t an exception, in fact they are one of the most violent militaristic nations on Earth, the violence they have perpetrated is at least the equal of the violence perpetrated by Palestinians. And in terms of people killed and wounded, Israel is the hands down winner, killing far more Palestinians than vice versa. And as of today, are Israelis striving for peace with the Palestinians in Gaza? Some few are, but many are braying for blood.  Of course the western media and Netanyahu’s apologists love to portray images of Muslims espousing violence, while images of Israelis braying for blood will never sully the airwaves. Jesus wept.

Lastly, the coup de grace, the capstone lie that glues the rest all together. Once one understands that the Palestinians are an illegitimate, uncivilized, violent people, the natural conclusion is obvious. The Palestinians deserve what is happening to them, Israel has no choice but to use violence to defend itself. If the Palestinians would only behave themselves, Israel wouldn’t have to resort to such measures. Siege mentality, biblical insanity, racism, all of the above, whatever one wants to call it … Netanyahu and his supporters have blinded themselves into thinking that violence is their only option. Unless one grants that Netanyahu was motivated by simple domestic politics, a desire to drum up support before upcoming elections. Racism or killing babies for votes, take your choice. If that is the case, I think Netanyahu may have made the biggest miscalculation in Israeli history. Since the last time Israel waged war on its occupied territories the Arab Spring has occurred, as well as an explosion of social media in the Middle East. He is making millions of new enemies for Israel across the Muslim world, this is not the road to peace.

I have a friend in Egypt. She’s an engineer, an educated and good person, someone anyone would be proud to have as a friend. And yes, a supporter of democracy and secular values in her nation. IE she is not some jihadist wing-nut who spends her time calling for the destruction of Israel.  This is what she posted on Facebook about the current Gaza violence:

“May your skies forever rain with rockets … may you never sleep in peace … my you never have a worry-free smile … may you never live in peace … may you never be safe as long as you live on Palestinian lands … go back to where you came from … to where they kicked you out and burned you alive … “

And note she was careful to say that this sentiment is directed at the baby killers in the IDF, not all Jews or Israelis. To put it mildly, Operation Pillar of Defence, is not going over well with Israel’s neighbors. That’s because it is a genocidal cowardly attack on a helpless population, a population Israel has kept imprisoned in stateless limbo since 1967. That Americans fall for Netanyahu’s siege mentality and disproportionate brutality is a sad reflection of how our western media simply regurgitates Israeli propaganda as if it were fact. If a population of Jews or Christians were being treated the way Israel treats the Palestinians in the occupied territories, Americans and the mainstream press would be foaming at the mouth with the injustice of it all. Yes, hypocrisy has become America’s core value.

Merry Christmas indeed.

(The above image is claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. This won’t be my last post on Netanyahu’s insanity, and if it goes on, they will get even less diplomatic than this post.)

Written by unitedcats

November 19, 2012 at 7:48 am

Gaza Madness

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I want to write a post about the current situation in Gaza about as much as I want a root canal. Sigh. That means I must write one. It’s both a painful and a touchy subject personally. Worse, much much worse, globally this could easily lead to a wider war. It’s not like everything is hunky dory in the Middle East right now, this is going to inflame hatred further throughout the region. That’s never a good thing.

So, what’s going on? Well, it’s pretty simple. There’s been a lot of cross border incidents in the past year, including rocket attacks by various factions in Gaza. Israel assassinated a Hamas leader, Ahmed Jabari, on November 14th. Some rockets were fired out of Gaza in retaliation. And Israel escalated into launching large scale attacks and is threatening a ground invasion. In other words, Netanyahu chose to start and escalate this now, it’s not debatable. In fact the Hamas leader that was killed was in the process of trying to negotiate a permanent cease fire with Israel. Good thing they blew him away, eh? That’ll teach those Palestinians to try and work out a lasting peace with Israel. And of course England and the USA have fallen all over themselves supporting Israel. Western press coverage is simperingly pro-Israel. A blog dedicated to that is in the works.

Background: Israel has the military advantage by orders of magnitude. Israel wields one of the world’s greatest militaries. Gaza isn’t even on the charts. This is not a contest between equals, or anything even remotely close to it. Gaza is legally Israeli occupied territory. Israel captured it from Egypt in 1967. They pulled their troops out a few years ago, and imposed a crushing blockade on the territory. Hamas is the effective government of Gaza, though there are militants not under their control. Israel refuses to negotiate with Hamas. The blockade has eased since the Egyptian revolution, Egypt has relaxed the blockade along their border with Gaza.

Why did Netanyahu attack? Damned if I know. He’s certainly a bellicose fellow. Some speculate he is doing it to get votes in an upcoming election. There’s speculation that he is trying to scuttle negotiations with Iran. There have been many rockets fired from Gaza in the past year by various factions, but no one in Israel has been killed. The timing of Netanyahu’s attack is very suspicious. If Netanyahu thinks waging war on Gaza will stop rocket attacks, why didn’t it work last time? Why launch the attack when Hamas wanted to talk permanent cease fire?

As of my writing this, Netanyahu is launching more attacks. I think it’s crazy. Weakening Hamas will just strengthen more radical Palestinian factions. And since this will likely strengthen Hamas, wtf? The attack gives hard liners in Egypt more traction, not to mention in Syria. The attack is also triggering anti-Israeli and anti-American sentiment throughout the world, I don’t see how that is in Israel’s interests. And somehow I doubt Obama appreciates another layer of added complication to the Middle East situation. Lastly, the US’s enemies around the globe will be looking at this to see if they can exploit it in any way. Yeah, the USA needed that.

In other words, Netanyahu is risking terrible regional or even global consequences in order to strengthen his hand in elections. That strikes me as criminally insane. Yet some Americans are cheering him on. That’s just ordinary insane. There are Palestinians and Israelis working for peace, the Netanyahu government isn’t among them, and in fact is doing its best to perpetuate the violence.

The bottom line, the one so many in the west refuse to understand, is that Israel has held all the cards since 1967. (Since 1948 actually.) Yet instead of annexing the occupied territories, or letting them declare independence, Israel has kept them in stateless limbo for decades while slowly stealing their land bit by bit. Not to mention constantly and routinely using military force in the occupied territories, both a  threat and an actuality that dwarfs the threat of Hamas rockets in Israel. Israel reaps what it sows, and it has been sowing war for decades.

My heart goes out to all the innocent people in the region, they as always are the victims. God help us all if this war spreads.

(The above image was taken from a Gazan web site, it claims to show some of the current violence. I’m claiming it as Fair Use, and since I am critical of Netanyahu’s current attack, hopefully the copyright holder wouldn’t object. And if it turns out the picture isn’t what it claims, well, the blarney is flowing thick and fast from almost every faction in this ugly mess. Just turn on the mainstream news or look at Wikipedia.)

Written by unitedcats

November 16, 2012 at 7:32 am

Israel blames Iran for bus bomb, could this be war?

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A bomb has gone off in a  bus and killed some Israeli tourists in Bulgaria. The government of Israel wasted no time in blaming the attack on Iran. They claim “all signs” point to Iran, though they don’t mention what those signs are. It’s possible Iran is behind it, Israel has been waging a terrorist campaign inside Iran for years, so a revenge attack is not out of the question. It seems unlikely though in that it would give Israel a  casus beli to attack Iran, and there’s no indication Iran wants a war with Israel. A more likely group is the Mujahedeen e-Khalq (MEK), a terrorist group fighting the government of Iran. The attack came on the eighteenth anniversary of the attack on the Jewish Community Center in Argentina. Who launched that attack has never been proved either, both Iran and the Mujahedeen e-Khalq (MEK) are suspects there too. There’s really no way for us worms to know for sure, these are intensely politicized bombings with all sides playing for very high stakes, so some or all parties involved have every incentive to lie and mislead. Even if someone claims responsibility, that doesn’t mean they actually did it. Shadow war.

Fortunately, even if I can never know for sure what happened here, I can still speculate on what will happen next. Israel’s instantaneous condemnation of Iran certainly raises the possibility that they will use this as an excuse to attack Iran. Some have even suggested that the reason for Israel’s campaign inside Iran is to goad Iran into doing something that would give Israel cause for war. If so, an attack could come within days. I’m certainly going to be following the news closely for awhile.

There’s certainly been rumours of an impending Israeli attack on Iran, some suggesting it will happen just before the election so Obama will have no choice but to support it. That strikes me as a somewhat facile analysis, I suspect Israel is just using this as another chance to tighten the screws on Iran. The whole Israel obsession with Iran is sometimes hard to parse, Iran is no threat to Israel, far from it. I assume it’s both to distract the world from Israel’s slow ethnic cleansing of the West Bank, and maybe goading Iran into starting a big war which will give Israel to excuse to expel the Palestinians from the occupied territories. In any case they are playing a risky game, as is everyone else in this unstable mess.

Then there’s the whole Syria situation. The west is clearly pushing hard to bring down the Assad regime, though to what end is again hard to fathom. Partly to stick it to the Russians, partly an attempt to replace an independent government with a western lapdog government I’m assuming. And Israel would love to have an excuse to annex the Golan Heights, or more accurately, get some compliant Syrian government to cede them to Israel, all nice and “legal.”

What none of this is about of course is democracy or human rights, despite the endless western condescending propaganda to the contrary. Even our leftists and liberals in the USA have become cheerleaders for blood and empire, all in the name of “saving” the women of the world. Nothing good will come of this bus bombing, but nothing good ever comes of terrorism. No matter who is doing the killing.

(I sat on this post overnight to see if there would be any new developments. Nothing really, they are claiming it was a suicide bomber with fake American travel documents. And Israel has reiterated its claim that Hezbollah/Iran are behind the attack. Hezbollah has even less reason to get into it with Israel, and has been explicit that they won’t carry our attacks on Israel, so it’s a charge I take with a grain of salt. I’m still of the opinion that an Israeli attack on Iran would be so stupid and pointless and counterproductive that Israel really isn’t seriously considering it. I hope I’m right.)

(The above image is claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. I got it from Wikipedia, and frankly I couldn’t figure out how to attribute it from their arcane instructions. It’s a Dolphin Class submarine, built for Israel by Germany. They have four of them, with two more on order. They can launch nuclear cruise missiles. Just one of many reasons while Israel has little to fear from anyone.)

Written by unitedcats

July 19, 2012 at 5:18 am

Netanyahu Makes Israel’s Position Clear: The Palestinians and Obama Can Go Fuck Themselves. Congress Applauds.

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Egyptian Troops surrender 1967

Netanyahu gave  a speech to Congress where he clarified Israel’s position on a negotiated settlement with the Palestinians, and his opinion of Obama’s recent policy speech on the Middle East. The title of the post pretty much sums it up. And how did our elected leaders respond to this man? He got 22 standing ovations. Such is modern America, where right is wrong and wrong is right. I can be reasonable and debate the issue though. What, exactly,  did Netanyahu state were Israel’s preconditions for talks? IE these are the things the Palestinians must do before Israel will even consider actual negotiations:

1. Israel’s claim to all of Jerusalem is inviolate and non-negotiable. Yes, the Palestinians must agree to let Israel annex the city they want for their capital.

2. There will be a permanent Israeli military presence in the Jordan Valley. That’s the valley that lies between the West Bank and Jordan. In other words, whatever Palestinian state exists on the West Bank will be completely surrounded by Israeli territory. And in fact Israel would control such a state’s airspace and borders. Yeah, that’s a viable state.

3. The Palestinian Authority must tear up their recent unification agreement with Hamas. That’s right, Israel gets to decide who represents the Palestinians, what the Palestinians want doesn’t matter. You’d think that mainstreaming Hamas into a political party would be a good thing since political parties tend to be far less prone to violence. In fact historically this has been the most successful way to get terrorist groups to stop terrorism. I guess Israel doesn’t want to risk that happening.

4. The Palestinian’s right-of-return would be permanently off the table, no Palestinian or their descendent could ever return to their ancestral homes in what is now Israel proper. This has been Israel’s official (and illegal) position since 1948, but I guess Netanyahu felt like rubbing it in again. Yes, the Palestinians must agree that all the homes and property stolen from them in 1948 is now Israel’s property. And this demand is coming from a country that is still trying to recover property stolen from Jews in World War Two Europe.

5. This is the one that should have brought Congress down in gales of laughter, just before they had Netanyahu escorted from the podium. He said that the Palestinians had to recognize Israel as a “Jewish State.” What the hell does that mean? It means that whatever the Palestinians agree to, Israel is just simply going to make more demands. The Palestinians agreed decades ago that Israel had a right to exist. And all Israel did is come up with the same demand in different words. Right.

In other words, Israel has zero interest in a settlement with the Palestinians. In fact they won’t even talk to the Palestinians unless the Palestinians agree to permanent status as a subject people of Israel. And yet there are Americans still so addle-headed that they believe the endless propaganda that Israel wants peace. If Israel wanted peace, they would try to negotiate peace, not make demands that are designed to be rejected as preconditions to talk.

Netanyahu had more in his comic monologue. He also claimed that Israel’s 1967 borders are “indefensible.” Let’s look at this claim. In 1967 Israel launched a war from behind those very borders that wiped out the militaries of Jordan, Egypt, and Syria, and captured the Golan Heights, the West Bank, and the Sinai Peninsula … in six days! And since then Israel’s conventional military advantages over its neighbours has done nothing but increase, in addition to acquiring  acquiring nuclear weapons. Again, gales of laughter should have broken out at this claim, the idea that the region’s most powerful military can’t defend itself doesn’t pass the laugh test.

It would be farcical if it wasn’t so disgusting. The USA has given Israel endless military and diplomatic support, and they’ve nothing with  but strengthen their position and make the Palestinian position even more humiliating and hopeless.  These are not the actions of a nation that wants peace with its neighbours and its occupied population, these are the actions of a nation that wants permanent war and permanent terrorism. Right, Israel has been attacking its neighbours since 1956 and its occupied territories since 1967, but they want peace. Snort.

On the plus side, maybe Obama will be so pissed off at Netanyahu spitting in his face that he will find a way to actually do something about it. A man can dream, can’t they?

(The above image is Egyptian prisoners during the Six Day War. I’m pretty sure that’s it’s public domain under US and Israeli copyright law. I chose it for obvious reasons, this is Netanyahu’s vision of peace.)

Written by unitedcats

May 25, 2011 at 11:45 am

Random Notes in the Margins

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A couple of topics that I was unable to squeeze a whole blog post out on, but nonetheless wanted to say something. And yes, in some cases below I am simplifying or not adding obvious codicils:

1.  Germany’s Chancellor Merkel claims that “multiculturalism has failed.” She didn’t exactly define her terms so no one knows what she really meant. Yes, millions of foreigners, mostly Turks, have settled in Germany. As far as anyone can tell though, all she was doing was pandering to some fringe anti-immigrant parties and no real changes in German policy are in the offing. There’s basically two points I want to make here.

One is that sooner or later immigrants get assimilated. The idea that a nation will be “taken over” by immigrants simply is not supported by history, the opposite is what occurs. There’s even cases where the immigrants invaded and conquered the nation in question … and still got assimilated. The Normans in England and the Mongols in China being good examples. Yes, mass immigration, legal or illegal, does have problems. It is not an existential threat to a culture though, under most circumstances.

Secondly, how did all these million of Turks end up living in Germany? Well, after World War Two Germany had labour shortages, so people from the east, mostly Turks, were given permission to live and work in Germany for several years only. Great policy, Germany got labour, nice slow paced cultural exchanges took place, and the countries the workers came from got both money and westernized workers returning to develop their country. Why did this change? Bleeding heart liberals? Nope. German industry complained about having to train new workers every few years, so they got the government to let the workers stay.

This is one of the things that makes me mad to this day. Bracero programs, where foreign workers are allowed to come to an industrialized country to work for awhile are a great idea. The industrialized country gets the benefit of cheap labour, and the worker’s country gets bootstrapped upwards on the development scale. Alas because industry would rather blatantly exploit illegals or hire a permanent underclass, this option is almost never used. And the liberals get blamed for the downside.

2. The cat bin lady, Mary Bale. This was a huge deal some weeks ago. Some woman was walking along, petted a cat, and then tossed the cat in a residential rubbish bin. All recorded on security video, which the cat owners posted in order to identify her. And then the solid human waste matter intercepted the rotating turbine blades (thanks, Ralph Johnson.) She became a world wide Internet villain, her life was threatened, and she even had police protection for awhile. She ultimately was fined about $500 and forbidden from owning pets for five years.

Two points here. For one thing, the level of outrage generated by this is probably the greatest ratio of outrage to incident in history. I mean, yeah, it wasn’t a nice thing to do, but far far far worse happens every day. And for God’s sake, death threats? I love kittehs too, and if someone did this to my cat I’d be outraged too. However, it would be a “What the hell is wrong with you?” outrage, not an “I’m gonna kill you!” outrage. Let’s keep some perspective here folks. Secondly, and this is where a lot of people fail psychology 101, this was obviously an impulsive action on her part. All people are prone to acting out impulsively without really thinking it through, a lot of suicides are impulsive for God’s sake. This action of hers was more a sign that she was troubled and upset, not a sign that she’s some sort of evil person. Again, perspective here please.

3. The fire in Israel. Turns out Israel has done the same thing the USA has done, obsessed over defence to the point of starving much needed domestic programs in favour of the military. I mean, they have to ask for foreign help to fight a forest fire? Um, what’s wrong with this picture? In any event, this is a good article about the fire and Israel: “A Wildfire Is Burning All Illusions in Israel.”

4. And there’s been a frightening new development in Iran. Iran just announced that they have produced some Uranium ore of their own. Yes, the dastardly Iranians have discovered … mining! International figures actually expressed outrage at this, and some claimed it’s further “proof” of Iran’s evil intentions. No, it’s proof Iran wants to make their own fuel for their own reactors, since they aren’t going to be able to acquire it abroad. Once again, Iran is a signatory to the NPT and their nuclear facilities are carefully monitored by the international community. Which hasn’t stopped certain people from murdering Iranians in the streets, where’s the international outrage on this terrorist act?

Ah well, more and more I think I’m living in Wonderland. Or its evil twin. Did Lewis Carrol have an evil twin? Watching Inception twice this weekend before sleeping has also damaged my already struggling brain. (I highly recommend it.) I’ll try to carry on though. The TSA’s plan to create more crowds for terrorists to  attack should be covered, what’s up with that? Then there’s more wikileaks stuff, the jury is still out on whether this will be a good thing or a bad thing.

Have a great week everyone.

(The above image of the fire in Israel is claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. It’s central to illustrating the fire, it’s not being used for profit, and its use here in no conceivable way interferes with the copyright holder’s commercial use of the image. Credit and copyright: Reuters/Nir Elias. I chose it because it’s a lovely dramatic image. And, well, to point out the transcendent absurdity that both Muslim and Jewish religious fanatics are blaming the forest fire on God! When Hamas and Israeli religious fanatics agree, can the end times be far behind?)

Written by unitedcats

December 6, 2010 at 1:11 pm

How an Earth Mysteries Blog Post Morphed Into an “Is War With Iran Around the Corner?” Blog Post

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OK, so I was searching for a topic to write about this morning, and I was inspired by the following post: Top Ten Unexplained Phenomena. It’s an interesting post in and of itself, and I will write a counterpart post to it some day soon titled : Top Ten Unexplained Phenomena Explained. I mean, I’m on a  roll here, having solved Fermi’s Paradox and the alien abduction phenomena in one single blog post, the sky’s the limit. Now though his post inspired me to write a Top Ten Mysterious Disappearances post. Amelia Earheart, the Marie Celeste, the Ancient Mayans,  Joe the Plumber, and others, so so many others vanished from the pages of history, lots of fun. However, I realized this was a post that would benefit from a bit of time, not just the hour between coffee and work.  So I was stumped.

And to while away time why I cogitated, I answered a question on Yahoo Answers titled:

So, do you think that we are going to go to war with Iran?
If so, how long away do you think that it is?

And by the time I had written my answer, I realized I had a quick and easy blog post about a very current and alarming topic. And this is alarming, there have been a lot of war scares and sabre rattling regarding Iran since at least 1979, when the Iranians had the temerity to overthrow their USA imposed satrap, the Shah. And even worse, the current sabre rattling is accompanied by actual military posturing, a US/Israeli fleet sailed through the Suez Canal, Israeli missile armed submarines are reportedly in the Persian Gulf,  more US Carriers are en route, and now there is talk of airbases in Georgia and Saudi Arabia being used by Israel to launch strikes from. This is accompanied by alarming rhetoric, and it’s especially a little scary since the Russians seem to have publicly at least hardened their stance toward Iran. Short version, Iran’s president Ahmadinejad overplayed his hand and pissed the Russians off a few months ago.

So, the question is definitely a valid question. The USA and Israel both have a long history of attacking other nations, so the possibility is certainly there. And nations do tend to launch wars when things aren’t going well on other fronts. And there’s no real doubt that both Israel and the USA have some serious problems stemming from their current military occupations. It’s entirely possible they may “up the ante” so to speak and start a larger war. If Iran was thrown into turmoil and became a failed state, it would in theory at least uncomplicate some of Israel and the USA’s other problems in the region. And it would make it less likely that Iran could built nuclear weapons, something the west wants to avoid at almost any cost in middle eastern lives. A nuclear armed middle eastern state could actually defend itself against western neocolonialism in the region, and that would severely complicate the west’s efforts to steal all their oil.

On the other hand, all these preparations for war with Iran have been very public. I mean, one don’t sail a fleet of warships through the Suez Canal if one is trying to set up a surprise attack. So a case can be made that the west is just upping the threat quota and trying to get Iran to further eviscerate its nuclear program. It then follows that a case can be made that the USA and Israel haven’t actually decided to attack Iran yet, since it seems they would be a little more cautious about concealing their preparations. Still, absolute arrogance and disdain for their enemies’ capabilities is a hallmark of both the USA and Israel’s militaries. They certainly didn’t attack Iraq or Serbia by surprise.

Complicated, isn’t it? Another underlaying problem and motivation for war is the ongoing banking hostage crisis in the west. The bankers that have been running the west since World War One want more money. Not content with having practically the entire world owing mind numbing debts to them, they now want nations to actually fork over the interest on this gigantic pile of funny money debt. Note my previous post on people with no limit to their greed and no ethical compass. Well, there’s a lot of oil in Iran, this might mollify the bankers for awhile.

And as an added layer to this already top heavy cake, it’s possible that the west is hoping to goad Iran into doing something stupid. Ahmadinejad has certainly stuck his foot in his mouth before, and he has to be under a lot of pressure these days. And there are other elements of the power structure in Iran that have at times been less than cautious in their actions, the Revolutionary Guards being just the top of the heap. It’s even possible that some sort of false flag incident is in the works, something like the Mumbai Attack or Tonkin Gulf incident. I mean, the USA’s preferred method of starting wars is to taunt the other side and put the screws in with sanctions and embargoes until they do something stupid (or it appears they did something stupid)  so that we can seize on as a casus belli. In fact the only American war off hand I can think of that didn’t start this way is Korea.

So in conclusion, all factors considered, the chances of war breaking out with Iran are considerably higher this summer than last summer. And I didn’t even mention the BP oil spill or the disputed Iranian elections, both of which are destabilizing factors that make the odds of war go up. Hell, I could likely make an spreadsheet where one could plug in various elements and see what the “odds” of war are. And when I find a corporate sponsor for Doug’s Darkworld and can give up my day job so I can spend the days it would take to do such a concept justice, I will do so. Until then, watch the skies.

And by “watch the skies” I mean that if some big “terrorist” event happens this summer that could conceivably be blamed on Iran, the odds on war with Iran within days or hours go through the roof. Yes, it’s like the preliminaries to the Olympics or the World Cup. All the participants are primed and excited for the upcoming games, but war is the most exciting game of all! The teams get to play with real guns, and there are no rules! Well, you’re supposed to pretend your side is playing by the rules and their side is a bunch of violent Godless homo commies who sell their children to pet food companies, but no one actually believes that sort of silliness, right?

(The above image is claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. It apparently is from a Fox News article on Iran. I liked it because of the ramboesque stance. Interestingly enough, I don’t think that’s an Iranian pictured, the image was apparently photo-shopped from this Russian or Chinese site. Yes, that’s an Iranian flag in the background. No further comment. And lastly, I’m not knocking those Iranians who want to make Iran a more secular open democratic country, I just think a US/Israeli attack on Iran isn’t going to help their cause any.)

Written by unitedcats

June 29, 2010 at 9:48 am

Posted in Iran, Propaganda, War, World

Tagged with , ,

Gaza Remembered

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gaza_sunset

Well, honestly, I have been pretty unimpressed by the arguments people have presented justifying Israel’s “Operation Cast Lead” in the Gaza Strip. And the more I look into the history of the region and the history of the current “war,” the more unimpressed I am. Most if not all of them seem to be predicated on the idea that Muslims/Arabs are somehow less than human. The “Muslim/Arab=Terrorist/Sub-human” line has been repeated by so many voices over the last few decades that for all practical purposes many in the west and Israel think it’s a statement of fact.

And once one has that as a base to work from, it’s really easy to convince people of all sorts of other nonsense. It makes it easy to blame all the violence on the Muslims/Arabs…and to ignore or even justify Israel’s appalling history of violence. It makes it easy to convince people of things like “they use their own children as human shields.” I mean, to actually believe that human beings would do something like that as a standard practise with widespread support of their friends and families defies all logic, Israelis and Americans who support Israel’s wars would never believe such claims if they were made about Israelis or Americans…but since they already know that Muslims/Arabs are sub-humans who don’t value human life…it’s easy to believe it about them. See how slick and insidious this is? For the record, both sides have a well documented history of using human shields to achieve their ends at times. Welcome to modern war, except of course war has always been this way.

Moving right along, let’s look at how this current round of “fighting” started. On June 19 last year Hamas and Israel signed a cease-fire. Hamas was to stop its rocket attacks and refrain from attacks in Israel, Israel was to relieve the crippling blockade of supplies going into Gaza and refrain from attacks in Gaza. Guess what happened? For four months the rocket attacks essentially stopped, dropping from hundreds a month to a handful a month. And the few that were launched were fired by splinter groups, not Hamas. This is more than a 98% reduction in attacks, combined with the fact that Hamas loudly encouraged Palestinians not to attack Israel, it sure sounds like a good faith effort to stop the rocket attacks. I mean, if the goal was to stop the rocket attacks, seems like a 98% reduction is a good start, nu?

So Israel lifted the blockade? No. They allowed the supplies going into Gaza to increase from 50 tons a day to 70 tons a day. Sounds generous until one knows that prior to the Israeli blockade of Gaza 500-600 tons of supplies a day flowed in. This was, at best, a token gesture on Israel’s part, and very quickly put Hamas under tremendous pressure to resume the attacks. Israel also continued a propaganda war against Hamas and accused them of violating the cease fire in other ways, all without providing any evidence. And Israel launched attacks in the West Bank, while not technically a violation of the cease fire, it clearly wasn’t helping the situation.

Then the fun begins. On November 4 2008, while the world was watching a certain election in a certain important western nation…Israel launched a military attack inside of Gaza, killing six Hamas militants under the claim that Israel was intercepting weapons being smuggled into Gaza. Gee ,what an incredible coincidence that this took place on a  day guaranteed not to be noticed in the western media? Hamas announced that this premeditated attack and the failure of Israel to lift the blockade meant that Israel was in substantial violation of the cease-fire agreement…and the rocket attacks resumed. Even then as the violence escalated Hamas offered to resume the cease-fire under the original terms, but Israel rejected all offers until on December 19 Hamas formally said they would no longer abide by the cease-fire. And on December 27th Israel launched their now bloody  ongoing operation in Gaza. An operation that was in the planning and preparation stages long before the cease-fire was even signed mind you.

I’m sorry, but a 98% reduction in attacks through diplomacy puts the lie to any claim that this military operation is about “stopping the attacks.” And the facts and the time line put to lie the claim that it was Hamas that started this round of fighting, or that Israel had “no other options.” If a 98% reduction in rockets wasn’t a really good start to a diplomatically achieved peace, I don’t know what is. It’s a safe bet that invading Gaza isn’t going to acheive better results.

What a bloody mess. I’d say I don’t know how it’s going to end, except I’d be lying. This is Israel’s seventh try at achieving peace and security by waging war on a neighbour or in the occupied territories since 1973, the last time Israel was actually attacked and forced into war. Of the previous six operations, only two even partially achieved their stated objectives, and all of them decreased Israel’s security in tangible ways. The Israeli invasions of Lebanon radicalized the Muslim population of Lebanon and directly inspired the creation of Hezbollah for God’s sake. If that alone isn’t proof that the idea of achieving peace through war is really stupid, I don’t know what is. And I can safely say that this seventh attempt to acheive peace and security for Israel by waging war on non-Israelis will not make Israel any more secure, and will make Israel less secure in unpredictable and unpleasant ways.

The blitzkrieg, or “shock and awe” as its current proponents call it, ceased to work in about 1942. With few exceptions it has achieved nothing since then, and it’s never succeeded in pacifying an occupied population. In fact in some ways this has played into Hamas’s hands, they now have every incentive to fight to the last man, what have they got to lose? Whether the Israelis kills their women and children through starvation or war, the result is the same. They might as well go out fighting, as would almost anyone in the same circumstances.

(The above image is claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. Credit: Raising Yousuf. Another view of Gaza, and another of my endless efforts to remind people, including myself, to try looking at things from different perspectives.)

Written by unitedcats

January 14, 2009 at 9:30 am

Posted in History, Propaganda, War, World

Tagged with , ,