Archive for July, 2008

Barack Obama, imperialist thinker

Thursday, July 17th, 2008

Barack ObamaBarack Obama is the target of this well-aimed blow, but his thinking is exemplary of that of the majority of so-called “opinion leaders” in the US: Journalists, academics, and politicians. 

Mr. Obama, Meet Mr. Jihadi
By Barry Rubin

Barack Obama says regarding his thoughts after 9/11:

The essence of this tragedy, it seems to me, derives from a fundamental absence of empathy on the part of the attackers: an inability to imagine, or connect with, the humanity and suffering of others. Such a failure of empathy, such numbness to the pain of a child or the desperation of a parent, is not innate; nor, history tells us, is it unique to a particular culture, religion, or ethnicity. It may find expression in a particular brand of violence, and may be channeled by particular demagogues or fanatics. Most often, though, it grows out of a climate of poverty and ignorance, helplessness and despair.

and that my friends is what you get with a Harvard education.

It is sort of like the famous scene from Indiana Jones in reverse.

You may remember that Jones is confronted by a sword wielding powerful warrior (Afghan-type clothes) who swings his sword at him showing off his great skill. Jones pulls out his gun and shoots the guy once. This brought a big laugh when I saw the film in a theatre. This is called: Western technology wins.

Now here’s my version. Jones, the epitome of modern sophisticated man in his expensive clothes and superior education, confronts the man with a brilliant series of arguments as to why it is in the warrior’s interest to focus instead on raising his living standards, make peace, and get his own state. The warrior pulls out a small knife and cuts off Jones’s head. Jones’s colleagues then say that Jones had it coming due to his past sins, that we must understand the suffering that led to this violence, this shows the need for more negotiations and concessions, etc.

This is called: asymmetric warfare.

While Obama poses as the great cosmopolitan there is something very much in common between his statement on the September 11 terrorists and what he has to say on the rural and small town Americans, who he believes are attracted to their views only through low living standards, ignorance, and the follies of religion.

No one can think in a manner different from him. No one can hold another belief system and act on it. They are merely evincing, to use the Marxist term for it, false consciousness. He will educate them both directly by material goods and by proper information.

Ironically, this is the epitome of imperialist thinking and it is also intolerant and demeaning in the way that historic racism was. To run a country you must understand that other people have their own set of beliefs and interests; that they think differently from you; that you just cannot buy them off; that their behavior is not just a result of your mistakes in the past but of their own history and culture (which determines even how they react to your own behavior).

Not to mention the fact that the September 11 hijackers mostly came from wealthy families and the wealthiest of them all was Usama bin Ladin.

He might have grown up partly in Indonesia, he may have lived as a Muslim until age 10, but Obama’s mentality is extraordinarily unsuited to understand the Third World, Middle East (or other dictatorships), terrorists (and their far more numerous supporters), or even the American people as a whole.

Perhaps Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini of Iran put it best, if I might paraphrase him: Anyone who thinks we staged a revolution because of the price of watermelons is a fool.

Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), with Walter Laqueur (Viking-Penguin); the paperback edition of The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan); A Chronological History of Terrorism, with Judy Colp Rubin, (Sharpe); and The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley). To read and subscribe to MERIA and other GLORIA Center publications or to order books, visit

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The Palestinians: a class act

Wednesday, July 16th, 2008

News item:

[Palestinians] heaped praise on Lebanese prisoner Samir Kuntar, who killed four people in 1979, and Dalal Mughrabi, the Fatah woman who led the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre that claimed the lives of 36 people.

Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza took to the streets to celebrate the prisoner deal. Chanting slogans in support of Hizbullah, many distributed candy and pledged to continue the fight until all Palestinian prisoners were freed.

Palestinians also demonstrated in support of Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, who has been charged with genocide in the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who is currently visiting Malta, welcomed the prisoner swap and sent greetings to Kuntar.

[A top Fatah official] described Kuntar as a “big struggler” and Mughrabi as a “martyr who led one of the greatest freedom fighters’ operations in the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

“Samir, Mahmoud Abbas here. I just wanted to congratulate you on getting out of the Zionist jail. All of us Palestinians are proud of your big struggling against Zionist oppressor 4-year-old-girls.”

“I hope it doesn’t bother you too much that you are sharing the spotlight with Dalal Mughrabi, who, although a woman and probably a whore, killed 27 Zionists (13 of whom were children), as well as Hassan al-Bashir, although the millions that he murdered were only black Africans who are worthless except as slaves.”

“But you have to admire someone who commits a big genocide, don’t you, Samir? Did you know that I was an admirer of the greatest freedom fighter of them all, Adolf Hitler? I even wrote a book defending him.”

“We are having a great party today, just like we did on 9/11, celebrating the defeat of the racist Zionists. Keep up the struggle!”

The Palestinians: truly a class act.

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No other country would do this

Wednesday, July 16th, 2008

Eldad Regev (L.) and Ehud Goldwasser

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Psychotic with hatred

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

News item:

Samir Kuntar and four Lebanese prisoners captured in the Second Lebanon War will receive an official state welcoming when they are released by Israel on Wednesday as part of the prisoner swap with Hizbullah.

The five men will be greeted at Beirut’s airport by Prime Minister Fuad Saniora and President Michel Suleiman…

In Kuntar’s home in Abey, streets are decorated with banners welcoming the return of the former member of the radical Palestine Liberation Front. “Samir Kuntar is the conscience of Lebanon, Palestine and the Arab nation. Abey welcomes the hero, prisoner Samir Kuntar,” reads one sign. [my emphasis]

Incredible. They are simply psychotic with hatred. Smashing the heads of children is national policy. Only the Nazis compare.

Meanwhile,  the President of the State of Israel illustrates that he has no understanding of what this is about:

“We do not want murderers to go free,” [President Shimon Peres] said, “but we have a moral obligation to bring home soldiers whom we sent to defend their country”, and as painful as it is for Nina Keren the mother and grandmother of Danny Haran and his daughter Einat who were killed in Nahariya by Samir Kuntar in 1982 [sic], he also had to consider the families of Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev who had done so much and had been waiting for two years to have their boys come home. — Jerusalem Post

Peres  has never been more wrong. It is not about balancing the interests of the Haran, Goldwasser and Regev families. Not at all.

It is not even about the State of Israel. It is about the Jewish People and the need to show the world that murdering Jews because they are Jews will not be tolerated or excused.

Hizbullah’s commander in south Lebanon, Sheik Nabil Kaouk, said Tuesday that Wednesday’s prisoner exchange showed Israel’s “humiliating failure in confronting the resistance militarily and politically.”

He is right and Peres is wrong. Kuntar should have been executed in 1979, but there’s still time to correct the error.

Update [16 Jul 1025 PDT]: Corrected the date of the Haran murders to 1979.

Kuntar is free. Read a devastating analysis of Israel’s policy of trading prisoners with terror organizations here.

Update [16 Jul 1040 PDT]:  News item:

Abbas congratulates family of Samir Kuntar

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday sent his regards to the families of Samir Kuntar and the other four Lebanese prisoners scheduled to be transferred to Hizbullah.

Abbas praised the prisoner swap and congratulated the Kuntar family.

Israel should immediately terminate negotiations and break relations with the Palestinian Authority, which has showed itself to be a terrorist entity.

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Meet Amna Muna, another hero of Palestinian ‘resistance’

Monday, July 14th, 2008

Now that the obscene trade with Hezbollah is almost a done deal — supposedly it will take place on Wednesday, with brutal child-killer Samir Kuntar and others crossing the border into Lebanon at Rosh haNikra — we can start being afraid of what will be given up to Hamas in trade for Gilad Schalit.

This is much more problematic, because Schalit is almost certainly alive, while Hezbollah will be returning only bodies. Once again, Israel is being forced to make a “Sophie’s choice” between alternatives that are both horrible. Leave Schalit to die in captivity — or guarantee further kidnappings while releasing murderers who will certainly kill again.

And as always, there is an element of psychological torture involved.

YNet reports:

According to the report, Israel and Hamas previously had agreed that during the first stage of the prisoner swap 350 Palestinian prisoners will be released in exchange for Shalit’s transfer to Egyptian custody. In the second phase an additional 100 prisoners will be freed upon the soldier’s arrival in Israel, and 500 more Palestinians will be returned two months after Shalit’s release.

The Palestinian source said Israel has also backed down from its agreement to release all of the female Palestinian prisoners and is particularly against freeing Amna Muna, who was charged and convicted for her involvement in the murder of 16-year-old Ofir [R]ahum in January 2001.

Amna MunaAmna Muna is another great hero of the Palestinian  ‘resistance’. Like Bus of Blood murderer Dalal Mughrabi, she is loved and venerated as an example for Palestinian womanhood. Muna (also spelled ‘Mona’ or ‘Mouna’) was 25 and working as a journalist in Ramallah when she met Ofir in an Israeli chat room. Posing as a tourist or new immigrant (accounts vary) named ‘Sali’, she established an online relationship with him over a period of months, and ultimately arranged a meeting. Ofir traveled from his home in Ashkelon to the bus station in Jerusalem, where Muna picked him up. She drove him to a secluded spot near Ramallah, where they met her confederates, several Fatah terrorists who shot Ofir 15 times and buried his body.

Ofir RahumHere’s an excerpt from their last chat, the day before the murder, from Newsweek:

ofir 15/01/01 i don’t know if iI have enough to come back to ashkelon

sali 15/01/01 16:04 i told you I will bring you back to tel aviv in my friends car but she will be with it ok coz I am afraid to drive at night

sali 15/0101 16:35 you don’t know how much I am waiting for wednesday but we have to say bye till wednesday

ofir 15/01/01 16:35 bye

sali 15/01/01 16:35 love you dear

In prison she has become something of an activist, recently leading a hunger strike for better treatment of what are called Palestinian political prisoners. There’s no doubt in my mind that she will go home — if not in this prisoner exchange then in the next one — to a festive Fatah celebration.

There is a way to stop this, at least in the future, and that is to establish a death penalty for terrorist murderers. Perhaps now Israelis have had enough, and it will be possible. The European Union would scream bloody murder (so to speak), but I wonder how long it will take before they are placed in exactly the same position?

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