The visit of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu caused a boycott by more than 50 House Democrats and protests from the Jewish community. While speaking at the annual American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in D.C., Netanyhahu was faced with protests from a few dozen rabbis who oppose the state of Israel, as well as protesters with CodePink rallying outside the Cannon House Office Building. The CodePink protesters entered the House buildings and confronted members of Congress for their support of Netanyahu’s plan to halt nuclear talks between the US and Iran. Netanyahu also spoke to Congress directly asking those in attendance to abandon the talks with Iran, calling it a “very bad deal”.
The Saudi-led coalition resumed air strikes on Yemeni capital Sana’a after a five-day ceasefire. Dozens of families were forced out of their homes. These are the most large-scale bombings since the five-day ceasefire ended on May 17.
The issue at hand is that the Arabian coalition has so far been unable to combat the Houthis. With the help of former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, their joint forces mounted a quick military offensive to the south of the country and ensured military domination over most of Yemen. Their advantage is indisputable in Aden and in the country’s northern parts. In other provinces (Hadhramaut, Abyan, Taez), the status of local tribal militias is determined by the renewal of massive funding to the local chefs from Saudi Arabia. However, this has so far been limited to several localities. The attempt to incite a mass revolt in Aden in late April-early May with the help of former Prime Minister of the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen (South Yemen) Haidar Abu Bakr al-Attas has also failed.
Presently, “the president-in-exile” Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi can only be seen as a “political corpse”. He is neither popular in the north, where he allowed the Houthis to overrun the Hashid tribal militia without coming to their aid, despite numerous appeals from the local tribal leadership; nor is he popular in the south of the country, where he failed to fulfil a promise to redistribute property and grant far-reaching political autonomy to the South. Due to this, Saudi Arabia’s agenda now includes a very important fundamental point: to find a leader capable of consolidating the anti-Houthi forces.
It is clear that Ali Abdullah Saleh will continue to hold onto his former stance: he has nowhere to run and the ultimate goal of his one-and-only strategy is guaranteeing that his tribe remains in the highest echelons of executive and military power. Riyadh does not intend to hand over these guarantees. However, the Houthis currently hold the military upper hand. Moreover, their leadership is currently ripe with stout supporters of “a war to the bitter end”, that is, the recreation of a Zaidi Muslim State. Most of the moderate Houthis leaders were lost during the suicide bombing of a Zaidi mosque in Sana’a in March. The other Houthis who are willing to find a compromise have been excluded from key decisions. Thus, it is still clearly premature to talk about the beginning of any real and effective peace talks. Neither the Houthis, nor Abdullah Saleh nor the members of the Arabian coalition, Saudi Arabia in particular, have any desire to hold such peace talks.
via Activist Post
May 9, 2015
Reports are now filtering in that preparations for a direct military assault on Syria are being made by Turkey in concert with the Saudis and Qataris. These reports are suggesting that the military offensive will take place within the next few days. Some reports speculate that such action could take place further down the road in late June.
At this moment, Turkish forces are reportedly gathering at the nation’s southern border and Syria’s northern border in a fashion that can signify little except the posturing for military action.
While this article is in no way attempting to make predictions regarding possible military action, to provide dates, or even the hint that these possible attacks will definitively take place, the stage has clearly been set for some time for us to contemplate the possibility of such an attack.
Indeed, in the last few weeks, geopolitical alliances and talks have begun to coalesce so as to indicate that such an attack is not only possible but probable in the near future. After all, the US and NATO have attempted to gin up support for a direct assault on Syria since early on in the crisis when it became apparent that proxy armies of terrorists alone were not going to accomplish regime change.
The plans – at least from Turkey’s side of the fence – appear to be twofold. First, the plan to attack Syria has been part of the NATO agenda from the moment the death squads were routed by Assad’s forces and Turkey has always been a major playing in this regard.
Secondly, Prime Minister Recep Erdoğan’s own governing party has been suffering under a number of scandals, criticisms, and failures over the last several months and, as is the case in every country, a foreign war is more than helpful in diverting the attention of the local population away from domestic concerns. While certainly not the cause, plunging support from the Turkish public is certainly a stick used to prod Erdoğan into further action.
Emboldened by their illegal war in Yemen and their ability to massacre civilians abroad with little condemnation, the Saudis are apparently feeling more capable of acting against Syria directly and especially in concert with the Turks and Qataris. These attacks on Syria would undoubtedly take place – much like the Yemeni strikes – with US backing and support.
Apr 3, 2015
Now it’s Yemen’s turn: Saudi Arabia – the richest petro-kingdom – is militarily assaulting the Arab world’s poorest state – and it has Washington’s full backing. Riyadh has made it clear it wants its man back in power in Yemen and the surrender of the Houthis. Neither is likely to happen. But a regional war is. CrossTalking with Sami Ramadani, Ali al-Ahmed, and Ervand Abrahamian.
by Tony Cartalucci
Dec 15, 2014
Previously an outspoken critic of Iranian government, was interviewed by Australian media in 2001, loved Western society…
As predicted, the suspect amid the “Sydney Siege,” has long been on the radar of Australian law enforcement, as well as a frequent visitor to Australia’s court system.
Before that, however, he came to Australia as a political refugee, an opponent of what he called the “Iranian regime,” and was even interviewed by Australia’s ABC network in 2001 as part of an ongoing anti-Iranian propaganda campaign.
It has been revealed that long-time agitator, alias “Man Haron Monis,” also known as “Manteghi Boroujerdi,” was the suspect amid the so-called “Sydney Siege” hostage crisis. Monis/Boroujerdi claims to be a Shia’a religious leader and is often seen in press photos dressed as one.
Despite this, he was at the center of a hostage crisis requesting the flag of the “Islamic State” terrorist organization be delivered to him while claiming association with other ISIS “brothers.”
Neither Islamic nor a state, ISIS is led by US, Israeli, and Saudi-backed Wahabi terrorists, promoting a perversion of Sunni Islam – the bane to both genuine Sunnis and Shia’a worldwide and against which both the nations of Syria and Iran are fighting.
Monis/Boroujerdi rose to infamy amid two notable incidents – one being his involvement in the stabbing death and burning of his ex-wife – the other being his controversial campaign of sending hate-letters to the families of dead Australian soldiers killed during the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan. The latter was used extensively to stir up division across the pro and anti-war political divide.
by Tony Cartalucci
Dec 16, 2014
Suspect had multiple aliases, granted political asylum by Australian government, interviewed by Australian media, spent years as fake pro-Western “Shia’a cleric” condemning Iran and Syria before recently “converting” to Sunni and supporting ISIS.
Another embarrassing chapter has unfolded for Western intelligence and security communities in the wake of the so-called “Sydney Siege.” The suspect named by the media as “Man Haron Monis” also has gone by the names “Manteghi Boroujerdi” and “Mohammad Hassan Manteghi” and was an individual now confirmed to have long been on the radar of the Australian government, media, law enforcement, and court system since his arrival on Australian shores almost two decades ago.
Claiming he was a “lone wolf” attacker whose violence and extremism could not have been foreseen is betrayed by an extensive criminal record including murder, preceded by the suspicious circumstances that brought him to Australia to begin with.
He fled Iran in 1996 for unknown reasons, claiming in a 2001 Australian ABC interview that he was formerly of Iran’s “Ministry of Intelligence and Security.” He claimed in the same interview to have been in contact with the UN about “secret information” he had regarding the Iranian government.
Global Research TV
Dec 5, 2014
To read more about the project to divide the Middle East please click here:
To read more about Syrian Kurdistan and Kobani, please click here:
Saudi Arabia has recently witnessed the aggression that should have happened sooner or later due to its short-sighted policy in Syria, Iraq and Iran. As an old saying goes: “If you dig a hole for others, you’re sure to fall in it yourself.”
A few days ago the Saudi town of al-Dalwa, situated in the oil-rich Eastern Province, suffered an attack of a group of armed Sunni terrorists, which resulted in seven civilian deaths. Most of the attackers were citizens of the kingdom. The prompt response of the local security forces allowed the servicemen to detain 20 members of an underground terrorist group, consisting mainly of those who had previously fought under the black banner of ISIL in Iraq and Syria. Law enforcement agencies of Saudi Arabia have managed to capture the head of the armed group, his name is kept secret. The only information that has become available to journalists is that this commander has recently returned from Syria where he was fighting against the pro-Assad forces.
Riyadh is now facing a harsh dilemma: on the one hand, the House of Saud is actively oppressing its Shia citizens, on the pretext of their disloyalty and their alleged attempts to undermine the national security of the kingdom due to the “evil Iranian influence.” On the other – Sunni terrorists, that Saudi Arabia is fighting today alongside with its closest ally – the US, have assaulted Shia civilians on the Saudi soil, and the latter were virtually enjoying the same rights as the rest of the population, including the right for protection. It is now official: Saudi citizens motivated by religious hatred are commiting manslaughter of their fellow citizens.
The only question is how Riyadh may react when the Sunni terrorists that it had trained and funded will unleash a wave of terror against the Shia population of KSA (Kingdom Saudi Arabia)? A similar course of events has already taken place in the neighboring Bahrain back in 2011, but Saudi regular troops were fast to cross the border in an attempt to prevent the violence from spreading.
It is no coincidence that the events in the city of al-Dalwa are completely ignored by the international media. Should this fact become widely known then the Saudi authorities will be forced to recognize the threat ISIL poses to Saudi Arabia along with acknowledging the underlying instability of Saudi society that can endanger the ruling Wahhabi regime.
Now that the Shia population of the Eastern Province is buzzing with discontent, the House of Saud has found itself in a tight corner. Should the authorities fail to prosecute terrorists, a violent unrest of the Shia population, similar the one that shook Saudi Arabia in 2011 -2012, in the wake of the above mentioned events in Bahrain, will be quick to follow. But if the terrorists are to be punished to the fullest extent of the Sharia law, then the Wahhabis and Salafis will accuse the royal family of “betrayal” of the Sunnis. This course of events will end no better, with a massive wave of violent terrorist attacks, carried out by ISIL militants all across Saudi Arabia. Now that ISIL thugs have faced harsh resistance in Syria and Iraq, they will be eager to move south to start a “sacred struggle against the corrupt pro-American reign of Al Saud family“. As for the Iraqi Shia population, they can only welcome this U-turn in their ongoing struggle against Islamists. Moreover, it is possible that the indignation of the Saudi Shia population of the Eastern Province will find some form of support in Tehran and Baghdad. This means that the fate of the kingdom’s territorial integrity will be put to the test. The nightmares of the Saudi ruling family seems to be coming true — Saudi Arabia can be split into several parts, which were joined together to create the kingdom back in 1929. This trend can be accelerated by the fact that a couple of weeks ago the Shia Houthis rebels seized power in Yemen, on the south-western borders of KSA.
Oct 20, 2014
Press TV correspondent Serena Shim has been killed, perhaps murdered, near the Turkish-Syrian boarder. Shim had for many months been documenting Turkey’s ignominious role in the ongoing destabilization of Syria. Many Zionist-backed Islamist zealots have been funnelling into Syria via Turkey, often armed with Israeli weapons, with the goal of overthrowing one of the few governments in the world which refuses to accept Zionist colonization of the Middle East. Shim was illuminating this inconvenient truth to the world and loss her life in the process.
As with slain Press TV correspondent Maya Nasser, Shim was exposing the non-Syrian ethnicity of much of the anti-government fighters, thus falsifying the Western propaganda claim that an indigenous grass-roots uprising is taking place in the country.
While the Zionist controlled media in the West has been championing the destruction of Syria, Press TV has been almost alone in producing reportage which is critical of the actions of the NATO-backed armed gangs which are undermining peace and stability in the region.
Shim had in the hours leading up to her death been falsely accused of engaging in espionage by members of the Turkish establishment who were no doubt eager to suppress the news she was disseminating. Press TV reported
“Serena was killed in a reported car accident when she was returning from a report scene in the city of Suruch in Turkey’s Urfa province. She was going back to her hotel in Urfa when their car collided with a heavy vehicle. Urfa province is near the Syrian border. Serena Shim covered reports for Press TV in Lebanon, Iraq, and Ukraine. On Friday, she told Press TV that the Turkish intelligence agency has threatened and accused her of spying and she fears to be arrested.”
As someone who was her colleague I would like to express my condolences to her loved ones. Serena was potentially saving lives in Syria by revealing the machinations of Israeli-sponsord death squads on the Turkish side of the Syrian-Turkish boarder. R.I.P Serena Shim.
by Brandon Turbeville
Sept 30, 2014
While mainstream media outlets in the Western world continue to shill for the White House and NATO’s plans to destroy the Syrian state and oust its democratically elected president, one notable linchpin of propaganda involves the labeling of Raqqa province in Syria as the “home base” of ISIS.
For instance, in an article and video published by the Wall Street Journal , an attempt was made to present “what it’s like to live” inside the “home base” of ISIS. As one might expect, the video paints a terribly bleak picture of the life of women and Syrians in general. Yet the video, as it has been presented by many mainstream outlets, falsely refers to Raqqa as the “home base” of ISIS.
Still, in this video as well as other reports, ISIS is presented as a shadowy group that appeared out of nowhere. For instance, the WSJ states that Raqqa changed in 2014, when ISIS suddenly overran the city and made it “into their home base.”
Yet the reality is that, while Raqqa may have been overtaken by ISIS, it is by no means their “home base.” The truth is that the actual home base of ISIS is located much further away than Raqqa, Syria, or anywhere in Iraq. The reality is that the home base of ISIS is located in Washington, D.C., Langley, VA, London, and other NATO countries that have provided the funding, weaponry, and direction that ISIS has used to conquer Raqqa to begin with.
Friends of Syria
Jul 26, 2014
Muslim women who wear veils are sexier, kiss better, and are less inclined to bestiality, say these clerics. Western women—well, forget it.
She lowered her voice and asked me: “Did you know that this very same singer or dancer or whatever you want to call him has relations with animals?” She pronounced the sentence as though she knew every detail of Michael Jackson’s relations with animals.
It was the first time that I had ever heard about bestiality, something that according to my counselor was very common in the West.
I thought back to that moment in the school office when I read statements this week by Mehdi Bayati, the cleric who directs Iran’s Strategic Center for Chastity and Modesty. Back when I was in middle school, both my religion teacher and that school counselor dedicated long hours to how Western men and women have lost their taste for one another, how they are emotionally broken and have turned to animals to satisfy their desires. All this was meant to encourage young students to observe the Islamic hejab, instilling fears in them about what would become of a society in which women were not sufficiently chaste.
Mehdi Bayati has been putting forward the same argument. “The growth of feminism in the West and the fact that 60 percent of Western women prefer to sleep with dogs rather than men is the result of the absence of hejab [the veil] and the diminished threshold of women’s sexual arousal,” he told the Resa News Agency, run by the Qom seminary.
He did not specify the source of this figure, but referred to the provocative nature of women’s hair. “It is said that the Prophet Mohammad stated that women’s hair sexually arouses men,” he said, conceding that “perhaps modern science has not proven this” but “it was said by somebody who only speaks the truth.”
Invoking one of the less frequently discussed rationales for imposed dress codes, Bayati also said that “the absence of hejab lowers the libido of men and this would not benefit women.”
Iranian clerics have long promoted Islamic hejab by arguing about sexual corruption or deviance in the West, but one of the strangest comments came earlier this year from the cleric Mohammad-Mehdi Mandegary, a member of the ultra-conservative Endurance Front and the head of an organization called Foundation for Promoting the Way of the Martyrs.
Mandegary declared Western women are sexually promiscuous in a manner not even found in the natural world. “In the West when one woman has relations with several men, they take pride in it,” he said. “But animals are different and a female of the species does not have relations with several males at the same time.”
Mandegary, like many hardliners, believes Iranian culture has become too Westernized and distant from true Islamic culture. In a speech he asked Iranian men and women to abstain from sex after watching satellite TV so that the embryo would not be polluted. “Unfortunately some people are not careful about the moment of conception,” he said in warning. “They do it after watching satellite TV and listening to inappropriate music. But all this affects the embryo.”
Even leggings have been pulled into the fray. Recently tight leg apparel has become the focus of controversy among Islamic Republic officials, and the issue was brought to the floor of parliament by the Tehran MP Ali Motahari. In an open session he displayed pictures of women in leggings and argued in remarks broadcast on television that “sexual deviations, homosexuality and bestiality are results of unbridled behavior and the trampling of morality, which hejab would prevent,” and legging, it would seem, incites.
Another bizarre comment comes from Mohsen Gharaati, a cleric who is the representative of the Supreme Leader at the Literacy Campaign and a frequent TV personality. In a speech he declared that, “Westerners have been cheated when it comes to sex.” He then compared a kiss between an American boy and girl with the kisses that he used to get from his grandmother.
“When I was in America, I saw boys and girls who were kissing each other but it was as though they were kissing a brick wall,” he said. “The kisses were not solid because perhaps this was the 96th person they were kissing that day. But when our grandmother kissed us it felt like she was sucking us in.” When the audience laughed he added that “they think freedom would benefit them but they were cheated.”
I turned to Hasan Yousefi Eshkevari, a reformist cleric who spent three years in prison for his political positions, to help me understand the religious or social context for such views. “These words astonish me as much as they amaze you,” he said. “I ask myself whether these gentleman are delusional or have been given wrong information. But I cannot find a clear answer for such nonsense.”
Eshkevari noted that such views have a long history, and cited Abolhassan Banisadr, the first president of the Islamic Republic, who returned from Paris and justified imposed hejab by saying that ‘women’s hair radiates a spark that arouses men.”
Banisadr, according to Eshkevari, also interpreted a verse from the Qur’an to mean that some women were aroused when beaten. Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi interpreted the same verse in the same way about seven years ago, Eshkevari says, concluding that physical harm arouses some women.
“If an Islamic thinker and a Western-educated man such as Banisadr resorts to [such things] to justify himself, what do you expect from Ayatollah Shirazi?” Eshkevari said.
But it is not only clerics and Islamic ideologues who use offensive words and images to describe the sexual life of Westerners. Last winter the commander of the Basij paramilitary force, General Mohammad-Reza Naghdi, used this theme to criticize nuclear negotiations with the Americans. “Thirty-five percent of babies who are born in America are bastards,” he said, without citing a source for his statistics.
A few months later, Hassan Rahimpour Azghadi, a member of Iran’s Supreme Council of the Cultural Revolution, went even further in a speech about human rights. “In Western societies 75 percent of children do not know their fathers and are raised by their mothers,” he told his audience. Defending the death penalty by stoning for adultery, he asked, “Why do Western countries consider this punishment against human rights?” He answered his own question by saying that “there are no sexual complexes in Islam because in Islam marriage makes faith complete whereas in Christianity marriage is not a Godly affair.”
Last month Hassan Abbasi, the head of the Center for Doctrinal Strategic Studies in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and a theoretician in the office of the Supreme Leader, claimed that the “Western human rights approves of incest. Incest is very rare in animals but the Western man has debased himself so much that he supports incest as a human right.”
“In America 100 percent of men have free sexual relations after marriage,” Abbasi said in another speech, which was aired on TV. “While in Iran perhaps two men out of ten thousand might marry a second wife. Listen to them shout about equality between men and women.”
Abbasi then referred to Anousheh Ansari, an Iranian-American astronaut and the first Iranian woman in space. “The basis of the Shi’a thought is chastity and the West uses women to destroy Shi’ism. Why did they send this woman Anousheh Ansari into space with a few men? They want to kill chastity. This is the main plank of feminism and feminism is the foundation of American lifestyle.”
Reading and researching such statements, I wonder how widely held such attitudes still are today among mainstream Iranians. On a whim I went on Facebook and searched for my old school counselor, who in her profile picture still wears hejab, but not as strictly as in those days.
I noticed a picture of her daughter, who was our classmate, and out of curiosity visited her page. She was not wearing hejab, but more surprising that that, is married to an Englishman. I was reminded of what her mother, the school counselor, told us so many years ago: “Ninety percent of Westerners have sexual problems. They are not aroused and most of them have relations with animals.”