Friday, November 24, 2017

Israel was planning assassinations in Lebanon: not in the Western press

Lebanese intelligence apparatus, the Security of the State Apparatus, today arrested Lebanese actor and writer, Ziad Itani, and accused him of spying for the Israeli state.  The details say that he confessed about his contacts and that recent missions were for the assassinations of Nuhad Mahsnuq (Minister of Interior) and former minister, `Abdul-Rahim Murad. Among his missions, according to Lebanese media, was to spread the "culture of normalization" in Lebanon.

Are "Israeli Arabs" really proud of being Israeli?

Look at this contradiction in this poll. On the one hand: "60% of Israeli Arabs say they are 'proud' to be Israeli, poll shows".  Yet, "Some 46% identified as Israeli Arabs and 42% identified as Palestinian Arabs, while only 3% identified as Israelis." Something is very fishy about this silly poll.

Thomas Friedman visits Saudi Arabia for a few hours and he learns so much there

This is happening with increasing regularity: Westerners visit Saudi Arabia and come back telling us that Saudis are thrilled over their despot.  This is like those media tour that Nazis gave in the 1930s in which they conveyed that Jews are fine in Germany under Hitler.  Those who report that Saudis love their despot: do they know that you would go to jail if you disapprove of the ruler? If you don't express support for the ruler you can go to jail. Even princes (cousins of the ruler) who disapproved even mildly of the new ruler, went to jail on charges of corruption.  As for Thomas Friedman: remember after Sep. 11 when Friedman also visited Saudi Arabia and expressed great excitement over the "reforms" of Crown Prince Abdullah?  Or when Barbara Walters reported that Abdullah is such a reformist and modern that he watches 4 TV screens at the same time.

47 million Turkeys are slaughtered on Thanksgiving

47 million Turkeys are slaughtered annually on Thanksgiving.  Yet, when Muslims slaughter 2 million or so sheep on the Hajj, many Westerners express outrage over the slaughter.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Ben Hubbard reporting on Lebanon: Saudi regime propaganda

When Saudi regime summoned Hariri and detained him, they fabricated a threat to his life (while all politically divergent Lebanese security services denied that there was any threat to his life).  In fact, Ben Hubbard, dutifully described Saudi summon to Hariri as "he fled to Riyadh", for his safety.  Whatever happened to the threat to his life?  How come it is now suddenly safe for him to return to Lebanon and to even address crowds from an open window?

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

My story with Lebanese PSP Union Leader

This is a true story of my days at American University of Beirut when I was involved with a strike of the janitors.  As we were preparing for the strike day, I was contacted by the leader of the Union of workers and employees at the university, who it turned out was a leader in the Progressive Socialist Party (call it Jumblat Party).  He wanted to dissuade me.  The dogmatic fanatic leftist that I was, would not be dissuaded, of course.  

Amazon's special cloud services

"Amazon Web Services on Monday introduced cloud service for the CIA and other members of the U.S. intelligence community."

60 Minutes ignores Washington's role in Yemen Carnage

"American complicity in the war is so broad in scope, it merited a warning last year from the US’s own State Department they could be liable for war crimes—yet it hardly merits a mention in major media accounts. The war just is, a collective moral failing on the part of “all parties”—irrational sectarian Muslims lost in a pat “cycle of violence” caricature." (thanks Amir)

Joseph Massad interviewed by Max Blumenthal

Click here not here.

White Helmets organization expresses gratitude toward the Saudi government of the servitor of the two holy sites


Monday, November 20, 2017

Stupid and racist New York Times claims that flirting "is relatively new" in China

They changed the article and removed the sentence.  In its earlier version, the article claimed that "flirting is relatively new" in China. How dumb are those US newspaper when they cover the world?

New York Times publishes a fake quotation by Hassan Rouhani

Look at this passage: "The Iranians themselves are clear about how they view the region: “No decisive actions can be taken in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, North Africa and the Gulf region without Iran’s consent,” Hassan Rouhani, Iran’s president, reportedly boasted last month. "  You know where the source takes you? To an article by former news director for Hariri media, who published it in a Saudi regime newspaper.  This distortion of Rouhani statement was first cooked by Saudi regime media and then adopted and circulated by all loyal pro-Saudi regime media propagandists in the region.  Actually, what Rouhani (who I detest) actually said was: no decisive decisions can be taken without taking Iranian stance into consideration.  But, hey: propaganda trumps news and facts.

Israeli by BBC standards

According to BBC, Israel is so peaceful and non-interventionist in the Middle East.  (thanks Basim)

Nobel committee

"The party said last week its controversial former leader Carl I Hagen, a vocal opponent of immigration who has also attacked Muslims, gay people and single mothers and called for Norway’s withdrawal from international human rights treaties, would be taking the Nobel committee seat it was entitled to." "In his 2007 book, Honestly Speaking, Hagen wrote of relations between ethnic Norwegians and the country’s Muslim community: “Freedom of expression is subordinate to the warlord, rapist and woman trafficker Muhammad.” "

Half of U.S. wealth is controlled by 25 billionaires

"The three wealthiest people in the United States — Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, and Warren Buffett — now own more wealth than the entire bottom half of the American population combined, a total of 160 million people or 63 million households." "America’s top 25 billionaires — a group the size of a major league baseball team’s active roster — together hold $1 trillion in wealth. These 25 have as much wealth as 56 percent of the population, a total 178 million people or 70 million households." (thanks Amir)

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Hariri sought asylum in Jordan, according to the Times

“Mr. Hariri reached out to Jordan with a request to go to Amman as a safe haven, a Western official said. The request was denied, the official said, because the Saudis had pressured Jordan not to accept him.”

PS Why would the Times bury this major story at the end of the article and not even place in the headline?

Hariri in Paris

He met with a Lebanese media delegation.  My media source (represented) about the meeting: they left with the impression that he was not free--neither in Saudi nor in Paris.  He pleaded that they don't ask him about his stay in Riyadh.  Interestingly, unlike the propaganda interview in Riyadh, he didn't state that he was free or that he was in Saudi Arabia "reflecting" or "consulting".  My source (a well-known media executive in Beirut) confirmed from Hariri guards that as soon as he arrived in Riyadh he was stripped of his cellphones.  Curiously, one of the people in Hariri entourage who is now suspected by Hariri family of being more loyal to Saudi regime than to Hariri attended the session with the media delegation.  

Saudi Arabia: from family rule to the rule of one man

My weekly article in Al-Akhbar: "From the rule of the family to the one-man rule: The Saudi Dictator".

Did Bill Gates actually thank the Saudi regime for its philanthropic work in Yemen?

All Saudi regime media claimed yesterday that Bill Gates in his visit to Saudi Arabia actually thanked the Saudi government for its humanitarian work in Yemen. Kid you not. But something happened: Saudi Gazette had to change its headline (which said that "Gates praised Saudi humanitarian work in Yemen") and the content of its story clearly after receiving a complaint from Gates.  If you google Bill Gates and Yemen you can still see the false original headline of the story.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Not in defense of Mugabe but...

I would like to remember the Robert Mugabe I knew (from afar) as I was growing up.  Robert Mugabe has an appeal not that different from that of Nelson Mandela for my leftist generation in the Middle East.  Mugabe was a brilliant student who persevered in a grotesque racist system of white minority rule in Rhodesia.  People have forgotten by now the nastiness of the regime of Ian Smith and how it was sponsored by Western government.  After completing his education in many fields and adding to it through correspondence education, Mugabe led the movement of ZANU. This is the Mugabe that I remember: the principled and defiant leader of liberation struggle who supported Arab struggle for independence and who supported Palestinian resistance (and received aid from it too).  Mugabe is a man who led the struggle for independence against two evil twin system of colonization: local and external.  This was all before Mugabe became a leader of a country--not a virtuous or able leader but a leader nevertheless.  Yet, the Western media coverage of the man was more like a caricature of him: and don't sell me the fake notions of Western outrage agent his tyranny: Western leaders go one-by-one and prostrate, literally, before every Gulf despot and you think that you rhetoric of outrage against Mugabe will stick?  You think that corruption of the Mugabe is worse than the corruption of US puppet deposit in the Middle East region?  Mugabe also championed the poor and was adamant about health care for all in Zimbabwe when 40 million remain without health care in the US.  But the nasty (and disproportionate) Western media coverage of Mugabe is partly directed against his measures against white settlers who sole lands that didnot belong to him. He was not "magnanimous" like Mandela who was more than happy to apply pure unjust Western capitalism in South Africa.  

Hariri is free but...

Did you see world news agencies? They are reporting that Muhammad bin Salman has told the French president that Saad Hariri has agreed to leave for France. The question is: why does Bin Salman have to speak on behalf of Hariri? Is he a minor now?

The humiliation of Masoud Barazani

The humiliation of Masoud Barazani in the winter of his political career is a good deserved lesson to any despot, za`im, demagogue, potentate, or tribal leader in the Middle East who relies on Israel and US Zionists for the fulfillment of his political ambitions.  Lesson well-learned.

Saudi Arabia: Israel's Dream State

"Israel has no better ally than Saudi Arabia." (thanks Amir)

How did ISIS fighters leave Raqqa? The hypocrisy of Western correspondents in Beirut

Western correspondents in Beirut are really part of the media team of Saudi camp in the region. Remember when Hizbullah expelled ISIS fighters from East Lebanon and allowed the fighters and their families to relocate to Dayr Az-Zur?  Remember how all the Saudi camp chorus in Lebanon along of course--as always--with Western correspondents in Beirut protested that those fighters should not be allowed to be expelled only and that they should have been exterminated with their families by all means necessary, and that Hizbullah must have reached an under-the-table deal? Well, back in May the US forces in Syria said that they only allowed the Syrian fighters of ISIS to leave peacefully, and they criticized the Hizbullah deal and claimed moral superiority because they would not allow the foreign fighters to leave peacefully.  Well, yesterday the spokesperson of the US forces in Syria admitted that foreign fighters did indeed leave Raqqa.  Where is your fake outrage?

Maronite Patriarch is not the first Christian priest to visit the Saudi Kingdom--contrary to what Western and Arab press said

Greek Orthodox Patriarch Elias IV visited the Kingdom in 1974.  There was a Christian community in Jiddah until the 19th century (the Wahhabis massacred them in the first half of that century).

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Is the US helping in ISIS in Raqqa and BouKamal?

I think that Russian accusations to the effect that US has been aiding ISIS in Raqqa and BouKamal may have been valid after all.

The chief correspondent of the Economist in the Middle East

I have been complaining about the lousy coverage of the Economist of the Middle East in the last few years. Yesterday, I discovered that the chief correspondent of the magazine in the region has a degree in journalism, and has no specialization in Middle East studies, and knows no Arabic.  Mabrouk.

Western media hypocrisy on Saad Hariri

It is scandalous how Western media--not only Western governments which we know how incestuous they are with the Saudi royal family--in cover up the Saudi regime arrest of the prime minister of Lebanon. Imagine if it was the Syrian regime which did that.  Also, they continue to partake in the Saudi propaganda scam by feigning uncertainty: as if the scenario of placing Hariri under House arrest is totally alien to Muhammad bin Salman. Did he not resort to the same scenario in the case of his own cousin, Muhammad bin Nayif? Where is the mystery in this way too obvious case?

The pro-Saudi propaganda of Ben Hubbard reaches a new low

"The recent episode started when Mr. Hariri fled to Riyadh". Fled? The threat to Hariri was in Lebanon or in Riyadh where he is in detention?  All Lebanese security services--even those loyal to Hariri--refuted Saudi regime claim about threats to his life in Lebanon.  Only Hubbard believes the Saudi claim.  As is well-known, even in pro-Hariri media in Lebanon, Hariri didnot flee to Riyadh, he was SUMMONED.

Bahaa Hariri

What is stunning about the detention of Sa`d Hariri, is that his brother (the benefactor of the Hariri Center at the Atlantic Council) didnot utter a word about the plight of his own brother.  Blinded by political ambition.

Arresting a leader of another Arab country

Saudi regime, by arresting the Prime Minister of Lebanon, established a precedent. The only other case I can think of was in 1977: when Anwar Sadat visited Syria before departing to Israel, ostensibly to explain his mission to Hafidh Al-Asad.  At the time, `Abdul-Halim Khaddam (the foreign minister), urged Hafidh Al-Asad to arrest Sadat to prevent him from visiting the Zionist entity.  Al-Asad refused alas.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Marxist basics: Billionaires are natural allies of despots


On Israeli medical research

So regarding this story: "New compound kills cancer cells’ energy-generating system: An enzyme found only in metastatic cancer cells and normal sperm cells forms basis for promising treatment approach developed by Israeli researchers."

I asked a comrade at Harvard Medical School to comment, and he wrote: "Choking off the energy supply of a tumor as a mode of therapy is a very active area of investigation in cancer research. In fact, targeting the energy pathways of cancer has been the wave for a few years now. This is not detracting from the findings of the Israeli team, only to say it is not unique at all as a “concept" in targeting cancers for therapy.  I still maintain the role of Israeli science is legitimation, in a very orientalist way (Israel brings science to a barren land populated by backward people, which adds to its legitimacy). "

Jamal Khashoggi is increasingly reminding me of King Husayn: one language for the West and another for the Arabs

استمعت اليوم لتفاصيل "مفرحة" عن الحملة على الفساد وجديتها واتساعها، ربما حان الوقت ان ننحي كل شيء جانبا وندعم سمو ولي العهد في حملته التي ستغير لو نجحت مستقبل البلاد.

In Arabic he wrote yesterday: "I today listened to "joyful" details about the campaign against corruption and its seriousness and scope.  Maybe it is time that we set everything aside and support his royal highness the Crown Prince, whose campaign--if it succeeds--will change the future of the country".  So he wants democracy in Saudi Arabia in English in the Washington Post, but requests loyalty to the ruler in Arabic.


Monday, November 13, 2017

Flash: a secret Saudi document about the Saudi-Israeli agreement

Al-Akhbar has obtained a top secret Saudi document (prepared by Adil Al-Jubeir to Muhammad bin Salman) about cementing the Saudi-Israeli agreement.  

The shoddy journalism of the Economist

Does the correspondent of the Economist knows Lebanon or is reporting from Saudi regime sources? Look at this: "Its secret policemen round up dissenters". What? Most media in Lebanon are vocally anti-hizbollah, and there are vocal pro-Saudi critics of Hizbullah who live in the southern suburbs and publish there and there were never ever cases of dissidents who were arrested.  There are large sections of the population in Lebanon who are opposed to Hizbullah. How can you trust the Economist anymore?

100 Israeli raids on Syria in the last few years

Israeli occupation military conceded that it bombed Syria 100 times in the last few years. Yet, I still read in the American press that Israel has stayed out of the Syrian conflict.  

Al-Akhbar has a special supplement on Lenin: and you think that a Hizbullah paper would honor Lenin and Bolsheviks?

Ignorant Western correspondents who can’t read Arabic refer to Lebanese daily, Al-Akhbar, as “Hizbullah’s paper”. Here is a supplement on Lenin published by the paper. You think Hizbullah likes Lenin?

The shoddy journalism of the Economist magazine: how I miss the old Economist and former correspondents

Look at this trash:
1) "In 2008 its militiamen briefly took over the capital".   Briefly? They are talking about one day. ONE DAY.
2) "Now Hizbullah’s green-and-yellow flags flutter above checkpoints on roads between Sunni villages." This is simply made up.
3) "Rafik Hariri, Saad’s father and a popular former prime minister, was assassinated in 2005 when he tried to disarm the group."  This is hilarious.  Rafiq Hariri tried to disarm Hizbullah? When was that? And how?  So they just make things up as they go along now?

I can confirm to you that Saad Hariri is indeed held against his will: although Western governments are covering it up

Citing a Western diplomat who met Hariri in Riyadh last week (not at liberty to reveal the name): Hariri "is mostly silent (during meeting) and (the impression was) that his house is bugged.  Even his wife is being searched every time she enters the door".

Saturday, November 11, 2017

What is King Salman's true opinion of Bahaa Hariri

In 2005, a few months after the assassination of Rafiq Hariri, I met with one of the closest advisers of Hariri wanting to know more about the political orientations of the family.  He told me that after Rafiq`s assassination, the Saudi King appointed then Prince Salman in charge of the political management of the Hariri family.  Bahaa at the time wanted to succeed his father as prime minister of Lebanon and leader of the family.  But Salman overruled him and chose his brother, Sa`d: he argued that Bahaa is less kind and less amicable than his brother and that he left a negative impression among Saudi royals. He recounted that Bahaa would leave the court of a prince if the prince is too late for a meeting with him.

Bahaa Hariri, as Saudi regime choice for Lebanon

I wrote this article several months ago about how Bahaa Hariri is entering Lebanese politics through the Zionist gates of DC.