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GLOBAL UMMAH SOLIDARITY
#31
HOW THE KHILAFAH WAS DESTROYED
http://www.hizb.org.uk/hizb/resources/is...royed.html

THE TRAGEDY IN THE MUSLIM WORLD SINCE 1924
http://www.hizb.org.uk/hizb/multimediane...-1924.html


CAN THE MUSLIM WORLD REALLY UNITE ?
http://www.hizb.org.uk/hizb/resources/is...unite.html

On March 3rd 2010 it was the 86th anniversary of the destruction of the Khilafah. Since the day the Ummah lost her leadership we have been divided, weakened, and in chaos.

The challenges and turbulence since the destruction of the Khilafah are too many to name. It is beyond belief that in the 21st century space flight has become a common occurrence so much so that it no longer makes the news yet the weak and most vulnerable from this blessed Ummah routinely perish for a lack of drinking water and basic sanitation.

While poverty and development occupy the discussions of many policy makers and intellectuals looking at changing our situation, Muslims, who have always desired Islam above all ideologies, have come to realisation that only Islam has the correctness of solutions. The debate seems to be around the practicality of this change in our modern day.

Though the command from the Creator of man, life and the universe to rule by Islam should be sufficient for us to re-establish the Khilafah, a study of recent political history shows strong and visionary political change is possible and has indeed occurred several times.

Otto Van Bismarck oversaw German unification and set the nation on the path to industrial supremacy. Beginning in 1884, Germany established several colonies outside of Europe in order to overcome its shortage of mineral resources. Bismarck managed to achieve unification of the German lands, which many had attempted for nearly a thousand years. Unification meant German resources followed one cohesive policy and Germany could be domestically developed without facing secessionist calls.

Similarly Japan, by the turn of the 20th century, had managed to develop its industries; however the rapid growth of the economy had made Japan painfully aware of its limited natural resources. Japan overcame such disadvantage through a programme of aggressive territorial expansion through conquering the Korean peninsula and surging deep into China in order to exploit labour and resources.

These examples show a nation needs only very basic ingredients to emerge as a powerful state that can very quickly establish a prosperous standard of living for its peoples.

When we look at the potential of the Muslim Ummah, the Muslim lands posses the key building blocks for a new nation. In fact we possess far more than the basic requirement. The reality is in fact that the future Khilafah has all the ingredients to emerge as a very powerful state due to the many strengths it will inherit, which Allah (swt) has bestowed in the Muslim lands. We have an abundance of natural resources, a population spanning half the globe as well as strategic and geopolitical supremacy.

This point is well established amongst Western powers. Even now western powers conspire to prevent the return of the Khilafah. In February 2009 the Guardian newspaper revealed that the British government had declared that to believe in the reestablishment of Khilafah in the Muslim world is ‘extremism’, in their colonial view. Colonial governments on both sides of the Atlantic deliberately mix the issues of Khilafah and terrorism, to fuel their war propaganda. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown called the Khilafah a ‘murderous ideology’. UK Foreign Secretary David Miliband told the BBC only days later that the Khilafah was unacceptable, though selective implementation of Islam in government was okay!

It is clear to most Muslims that the ‘War on Terror’, is a war on Islam. This war is to maintain colonial power in the Muslim world. In non-Muslim countries they want to silence Muslim voices that object to their policies – hence their talk of ‘extremism’. In both places they try to change and reform Islam, and westernise Muslims, forcing them to believe in secularism, democracy, freedom and the nation state – instead of the unity of the Ummah and Islam’s political system, the Khilafah ruling system.

However, now the Ummah is awakening. After the massacres in Iraq and Afghanistan, torture and detention in Guantanamo Bay, Abu Ghraib and Bagram, Muslims can see that the promises of freedom and democracy are false and empty. They can even see that people in the West are questioning Capitalism and this secular way of life. They see society in decline in the West and the sad breakdown of family life. Economies have collapsed, along with promises of making poverty history, due to the Capitalist behaviour of the finance sector.

In some Muslim countries polls show up to 70% of people want the return of the Khilafah. This is not surprising because it is an Islamic obligation. The Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said ‘whosoever dies without a bayah (to a Khalifah) on his neck dies the death of jahiliyyah’ [Muslim]. Also, Muslims know that only Islam can bind people together in the Muslim world, unite people, and bring dignity, justice and security to this Ummah again. The Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said “A single day under a just ruler is better than 60 years of ibadah” [Bayhaqi / Tabarani].

The real question that needs to be asked is how is it possible for a people so rich and so plentiful in resources, to be so poor in reality? There is only one real reason for this and that is the rulers over the Muslim lands have never had any intention of making the right use of such huge wealth for the sake of their people. The Muslim lands possesses all the necessary ingredients to take its own destiny into its own hands, it now just needs a ruler who has the political will to fulfil the destiny of the Ummah.

Any change can only happen with a willingness of this Ummah to bring it into reality; we must remove our treacherous rulers as they have been the thorn in our side for far too long. Our ability to replace them with the Islamic Khilafah system, with an accountable Khaleefah at its head, must be at the forefront of our need for this change.

The Ummah is in need of this justice, after decades of occupation and colonial subjugation. In fact, the world is in need of this justice after the fitna (conflict) and fasad (mischief) wrought by Capitalism for so long.

Hizb ut-Tahrir is working across the Muslim world for the re-establishment of the Islamic Khilafah. Our work has steadily grown over more than 50 years such that our presence is increasingly felt in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Indonesia, Central Asia and the Arab Muslim countries. We ask our brothers and sisters in Islam to work with us and support this call so that Allah makes this work successful and that we all see with our own eyes the promise of the Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wasallam) who said

“There will be Prophethood for as long as Allah wills it to be, then He will remove it when He wills, then there will be Khilafah on the Prophetic method and it will be for as long as Allah wills, then He will remove it when He wills, then there will be biting Kingship for as long as Allah Wills, then He will remove it when He wills, then there will be oppressive kingship for as long as Allah wills, then he will remove it when He wills, and then there will be Khilafah upon the Prophetic method" and then he remained silent [Ahmad]

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#32
PALESTINIANS SHOULD NOW DECLARE THEIR INDEPENDENCE
Johann Hari

March 12, 2010 "The Independent" --
Could the Israeli government make it any more obvious they have no intention of sharing the Over-Promised Land with its other inhabitants?

This week the Obama administration - who give Israel $3bn a year, more than they dole out to any other nation on earth - made a meek and craven request for Israelis to simply have a pause in seizing even more land, and to sit down with the Palestinians. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded with a big concrete slap: the announcement of 1,600 more homes to be built on occupied Palestinian land from which Arabs will be forcibly kept out. He has made it plain he will not loosen his grip by an inch, announcing: "Even if [Palestinian President] Abu Mazen comes along and says he's ready to sign a peace deal on the spot, we will restore settlement construction to its previous levels." No compromise. Never.

How does this look to the Palestinians? Their story is so rarely explained without disinformation that it still seems startling when it is stated plainly. Until 1948, the Palestinians were living in their own homes, on their own land - until they were suddenly driven out in a war to make way for a new state for people fleeing a monstrous European genocide. They lived huddled and dazed in the 20 per cent of their land they were allowed to keep. They hardly fought back: they wept and dreamed of return. Then in the 1967 war, even these small strips were conquered with tanks and platoons.

Day by day since then, the remaining Palestinian land has been taken and given to fundamentalist settlers who claim it was given to them by God. They watched while Israeli Prime Ministers said they didn't exist - "there are no Palestinians", announced Golda Meir - or described them as animals: Menachem Begin called them "beasts walking on two legs", while Yitzhak Shamir said they should be "crushed like grasshoppers... heads smashed against the boulders and walls." They tried peacefully resisting, launching a programme of sit-downs and civil disobedience. Yitzhak Rabin responded by ordering the occupying Israeli army to "break their bones." After decades of this treatment, they fought back with violence - some of it targeted horribly and unacceptably at Israeli civilians.

And so today - with the active support of the governments of the Western world - the Palestinians live in a permanent military headlock. They are split in two. The Gaza Strip is blockaded on all sides, its population of 1.5 million imprisoned in a cramped, collapsing concrete maze the size of the Isle of Wight. For nearly three years, the essentials of life have been slowly choked off, in a process one Israeli official described with a chuckle as "putting the Palestinians on a diet". The items blocked from coming in include pasta and children's exercise books. The UN has shown that 70 per cent of Gazans are living on less than $1 a day, and 60 per cent have no daily access to clean water. Every time I go there, I think it can't be worse, yet it is. They used to use cars. Now it's donkeys.

On the West Bank, the land-theft continues. To protect the settlers and their programme of taking Palestinian land, there is a huge military infrastructure, made up of check-points and random searches and settler-only roads. The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Richard Ben Cramer offers one story he witnessed that typifies and distils life on the West Bank: "One school headmaster, a dignified elder man, who passed the same checkpoint on his way to school every morning, was made to undress - not once but often - and stand naked while his students passed by. This was richly humorous [to the occupying soldiers]."

There is a solution. Everyone knows it: divide the land. There are two peoples - the Palestinians and the Israelis. Let them live in two states, with 1967 borders, with full compensation for the victims of 1948. Although it is painful to accept swathes of your own dispossession, the Palestinian leadership has supported this programme since 1978, and even Hamas - the ugly fundamentalist group - tacitly accepts it. Yet it has not been offered to the Palestinians. Every time they have sat down to negotiate, even more has been stolen from them: settler numbers doubled during the Oslo "peace process". It culminated in an offer of a series of broken Batustans controlled forever by Israel - one no Palestinian leader could accept.

And now there is an endless ratchet. Swathes of East Jerusalem are being turned into biblical heritage theme parks and settler-belts that cut the city off from the West Bank. In 2008, 4,600 Palestinians lost their residency papers and so were expelled from the city, 20 times more than the year before.

For a long time, I believed that the Israeli people - with their own history of unimaginable suffering - would change their behaviour on their own. They would surely reject life as eternal jailer, after the jail cells they have end-ured. They would surely see that this process of slow strangulation would only make Palestinians more determined to fight back. If nothing else, they would surely see that the Palestinians would - because of their higher birth-rate - soon be a majority between the Jordan river and the sea, and there was no future for Israel as a Jewish minority ruling over a Palestinian majority like some 1980s Afrikaaner tribute band.

While there are some heroic Israelis who argue back - Gideon Levy, David Grossman, Uri Avnery, Gush Shalom, my military refusenik friends - they are disappointingly few. It may be that surviving the most horrific atrocities doesn't make you compassionate, but more often makes you hard, and paranoid. It may make you see the ghost of your murderer even in your victims: Adolf Hitler in a Gazan child. I think of the survivors of the Rwandan genocide I have known, who promptly charged off to pillage Congo, killing millions.

There is very little the Palestinians can do to change their situation alone. They are virtually disarmed, with a few rockets and some stone-throwing kids, against the fourth most powerful army on earth. But international pressure - applied intelligently, without hyperbole - can strengthen their hand, and the Palestinians are considering a move that would catalyse it. They are considering a unilateral declaration of independence, and an appeal for the world to recognise them as a state. It wouldn't cause the occupation to vanish - but it would make the situation plain for all to see. They are a people; they deserve a state, as much as the British or the Israelis. Netanyahu talks about the dangers of Israel being wiped from the map, yet Palestine is being wiped from the map every day by his tanks and his guns. Why should they have to "earn" their right to their own land by proving obedience to an abusive foreign power?

Western governments support this erasure of Palestine: the EU with diplomacy and arms sales and by providing Israel with its largest markets, and the US with hard cash. A declaration of Palestinian independence would force them to either defend that position to (mostly appalled) electorates, or change it. Already, France's Foreign Minister, Bernard Kouchner, has hinted that he would feel obliged to support a declaration. Would Obama veto the creation of a Palestinian state at the UN Security Council?

Netanyahu is clearly panicked. The negotiators would meet as one head of state to another - rather than as a broken supplicant appealing to his master. He has angrily declared that the Palestinians will face "consequences" if they choose this path, including the annexation of settlement blocks. Chief Palestinian negotiator Saed Erekat replied: "The purpose of such a move is to keep hope alive... We're fed up with your time-wasting. We don't believe you really want a two-state solution."

The Palestinians want the same freedom that the Jews pined for - a safe home of their own. They should declare independence. Then it is up to us - the watching billions - to pressure our governments to make it real, rather than a howl in the dark.

j.hari@independent.co.uk


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#33
The International Congress of Imam Khomeini (s) and Realm of Religion Regarding Religion and Development
The Institute for the Compilation and Publication of Imam Khomeini’s Works
June, 2010 (Khordad, 1389 AHS)

THE IRANIAN REVOLUTION ? A WAY FORWARD
Rodney Shakespeare

Bismillah ar-rahman ar-rahim

The Iranian Revolution is unique and forms the impulse for Iran’s modern and successful development.  Imam Khomeini opposed tyranny, upheld the independence of nations and wanted justice for the poor.  He rejected aggressive militarism and wanted Iran to be exemplar, realising values firstly within Iran itself and only then exporting those values abroad. The Imam’s aims can be achieved if nations firstly stop banks from creating money (although the banks may lend their own capital and, with permission, the deposits of customers).  Then, secondly, there should be a supply of national bank-issued interest-free loans, administered by the banking system, and directed at the development and spreading of productive (and associated consuming) capacity to all individuals in the society.  Such loans would halve (even quarter) the cost of capital for micro-credit, public projects, clean electricity generation, small businesses, student loans and homes, while also enabling the spreading of ownership in the medium and large business sectors.  All these uses should be interest-free but all other uses of the money supply should have higher interest rates.  Moreover, it is a big mistake to rely on foreign capital.
The use of the national bank as the ultimate source of the interest-free money supply is essential if countries are to become genuinely independent.  Moreover, without the use of the national bank interest-free money supply, the Iranian Revolution will not, in practice, be capable of developing sufficiently so as to give the world a political, economic and moral lead to a world sorely in need of such a lead.

1. INTRODUCTION

The Iranian Revolution is unique and can only be understood in its own terms.  Neither communist nor capitalist, it has its own impulses; its own ethos; and its own aims. Quite remarkably, the Revolution is a modern phenomenon and has resulted in effort and success in almost every conceivable field.  Thus, of many possible areas, Iran is making developments in medicine and nanotechnology; it has an aeronautical industry and builds its own ships; it wins prizes for its films; and there is excellent architecture.  Moreover, on a 2009 visit to Iran as a guest of the government, the author of this paper noticed an extensive tree planting program and he spent a most pleasant evening hearing modern Iranian music which puts to shame most of the modern music heard in London’s Festival Hall.

It can also be noted that women have progressed in Iran and are now active, for example, in fields such as science, health, government and broadcasting.  Part of that progress can be explained as a consequence of the war with Iraq when the women worked shoulder to shoulder with the men ? whatever else can be said about war, it always has social consequences.  At the same time, Iran is a modern society and the progress of women seems natural.

Very significantly, Iran is developing new international policy.  As yet, the thrust of that policy is not understood in those capitals of the world that think they have a right to bully everybody else; to control their economies; to rip off their wealth; and to demand subservience.  Quietly and courageously, Iran is resisting the bullying.  
Furthermore, right across the world, people are beginning to realise that Iran is giving leadership.  The realisation has not come easily because the world’s main media are still controlled by corporations promoting narrow Western interests and perpetuating outdated, arrogant attitudes.  Fortunately, modern communication methods (e.g., the internet and satellite television) are gradually breaking the grip of the corporations and there is hope that more balanced presentations of news and information will come to influence the international body politic.

2. BACKGROUND
The history of Iran goes back beyond Persepolis.  More recently, it includes the aggression of Great Britain (UK) and Imperial Russia who, in 1907, regardless of Iranian national sovereignty, divided the country into “spheres of influence”.  During the First World War the two countries invaded Iran; and they invaded again during the Second World War. In 1953 there were shameful events.  Prime Minister Mohammed Mosaddeq had received parliamentary and popular support to nationalize the British-owned oil industry.  However, the American CIA and the British MI6 organized Operation Ajax ? a military coup which overthrew the democratic forces and reinstated the autocratic Shah.
Having no democratic basis the Shah’s regime came to rely on the ghoulish methods of Savak, the dreaded secret police.  In particular, the Shah began to move Iran away from its religious, cultural and historical heritage towards a “Westernized”, atheistic society.  This was to prove a mistake.  In 1963 Imam Khomeini was becoming increasingly influential and made a notable speech against the Shah.  By the early 1970s other clergy had become increasingly vociferous and in 1973 the Shah was forced to return the oil industry to national control.  
The spiritual, moral and intellectual leadership of Imam Khomeini then had its reward.  On February 1, 1979 millions of Iranians greeted the exiled Imam on his return from Paris and, within a few weeks, the Revolution was complete having received overwhelming national approval.
Then, presuming that because of the Revolution Iran had become physically weak, Iraq (under Saddam Hussein) invaded Iran.  There followed a ghastly eight year war (1980 – 1988) in which the West consistently backed Iraq including supplying it with the materials with which to make poison gas.  About one million Iranians lost their lives.
Unfortunately, since that time, the leaders of the world’s capitalist countries, headed by the United States, have continued to make every effort to isolate and demonise Iran.  They claim that Iran's civilian nuclear activities are for making atomic bombs and they use that claim as a tool to isolate the country and undermine its independent political and economic policies.  They particularly want to force Iran into abandoning its revolutionary zeal and policies in the Middle East.  In short, they try to coerce Iran into accepting the hegemony of the imperialist powers.  
Consequently, the 1980 -1988 war experience and the overt hostility of the Western powers have impressed a simple message upon Iranians ? if Iran is to survive in this world, it has to develop itself in every respect and become as independent as possible.  Thus revolutionary zeal and the harsh reality of Western hostility have combined to ensure Iran’s self-development and its growing economic and political strength.  Moreover, internationally, Iran’s influence has increased of late particularly because of the failed American invasion of Iraq and Israel’s atrocious war crimes in Gaza (2009).  

3. POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC AIMS OF THE REVOLUTION
Everything is a name of God.  The winds that blow are a name of God.

It is now time to set out some of the political and economic aims of the Revolution in an endeavor to try to determine whether the aims are being achieved and, if not, what might be done.  

Aims as stated by Imam Khomeini
The speeches and writings of Imam Khomeini ? a far-sighted politician, statesman, nationalist and moral leader ? can be broadly compared with Ba’ath and Wahhabis political philosophy which is essentially intellectually and morally bankrupt.  Thus both Ba’ath and Wahhabistic political systems are authoritarian with little thought other than their own self preservation, and Wahhabism, for example, is largely antagonistic towards educated women.
At the back of the Imam’s thought is monotheism and the concept of tawhid (unity of understanding and practical consequence).  He explained the need for Sunnis and Shias to be united and for the ummah, at the very least, to become a genuine comity of nations.  And, whereas Shia tradition in the past has been essentially apolitical, it became directly political under Imam Khomeini.  Indeed, he spelt out the responsibility that each generation has for its own destiny.
The Imam’s nationalism was undoubtedly strong and he well understood that a great power cannot survive without having a national base.  But his nationalism was not the usual nationalism which divides people; rather it was infused by something greater than the mere historical, linguistic or ethnic.  Thus he said, ““Our movement is Islamic before being Iranian” and he explained that:-
“Our aim is that Islam, the laws of Islam, the universal laws of Islam, would be revived and implemented and that everyone would live a comfortable and free life.  We want everyone to be independent.”
It is, however, to be a just power:-
“We hope that an Islamic power would emerge, a just power, a power which would depend on justice, and not on bayonets……..I want to tell you that there will be no more bullies and bullying.”
Yet, as was inevitable, he always addressed the immediate national issues being deeply conscious of Iran’s history and its suffering under tyranny:-
“After 2,500 years of oppression and tyrannical regimes and after 50 years of treachery, injustice, tyranny and plundering, we hope that we can establish this justice.”

Opposition to despotic and colonialist powers
The Imam had a concept of opposition to despotic and colonial powers ? he wanted freedom from the West, and freedom from dependency on the West:-
“We want our country to be independent in every respect.  Hence, for the satisfaction of God, we must pursue this matter so that not only our country, but all of the peoples of the world will be independent.”  
He further thought that world peace and sanity are geared towards the overthrow of the arrogant powers; yet the overthrow, unlike the French revolution under Napoleon or the Soviet communist revolution, should not imply a desire to embark on imperial adventure:-
“When we say that our revolution must be exported everywhere, they should not misinterpret it to mean that we would want to take over other countries…..All countries should stay as they are…………The meaning of exportation of revolution is that all nations would wake up, and would save themselves from this predicament that they face: They are being dominated: they are living in poverty while their resources are being plundered.”

Opposition to tyranny and promotion of social justice
The Imam recognised that all people are equal before God; that there is a link between people and leadership; that no individual has the right to force another man to submission; and that a government is a small group of people serving the nation, rather than being above it.  
His concept of independence, however, was not merely political ? it encompassed cultural, economic and social issues:-
“You must closely guard your independence, cultural independence, economic independence and social independence.”
The concept particularly extended to the poor so that they should have, for example, clean water, hospitals and education:-
“It is incumbent upon the ulema (Islamic scholars) and Islamic researchers and experts to propose constructive and universal plans which safeguard the interests of the Deprived and the dispossessed in order to replace the incorrect system of economy prevalent in the world of Islam, thereby liberating the Deprived and the Muslims from the straitjackets of poverty.”

Detail missing from the Imam’s speeches and writings
Those things said ? and remembering that the author of this paper cannot claim to be expert in Imam Khomeini’s speeches and writings ? it has to be admitted that there is apparent weakness in some of the detail necessary to give effect to overall policy.
Thus a call for national independence will not have much meaning if a colonial or political subservience is replaced by an outside financial domination which can control a country, for example, by trapping it into huge amounts of debt, just as control can be achieved by the gun.
Then there is the question of exactly what is meant by the removal of poverty because, in such matters, the exact methods, and associated consequences, are crucial.
And what about markets and private property?  Are they a good thing?
And is there not a need to affirm the importance of the real economy rather than the Wall Street casino?  And is it not vital to develop and spread the real economy?  Furthermore, is there not a desire to be free from inflation?

Islamic opposition to riba/interest
In particular, what about riba/interest?  The Islamic tradition is strongly opposed to interest. Furthermore, modern Islamic Economics and, in particular, Islamic Banking, either does not discuss, or is ambivalent about, or obfuscates, the subject of interest.  The truth is that interest is at the heart of the Western system, a system which essentially dominates global finance including most Islamic economics and, just as Christianity and Judaism were corrupted by interest, so modern Islam is largely (but not wholly ? there are genuine exceptions) corrupted as well.

Brief summary of political and economic aims of the Revolution
Some of the main political and economic aims of the Revolution can be summarized as follows:-

Islam has responsibility to the world
tyranny and subservience must be rejected
all nations should be independent
social and economic justice must be forwarded and solutions found to the problems of the poor
Islam and Iran to help solve the problems of other people in other nations
rejection of aggressive militarism
Iran to be exemplar.  Therefore values should be realised first within Iran and only then should there be attempt to export values abroad.
probable favouring of markets, real economy and  private property
if possible, elimination of riba/interest.

4. A WAY FORWARD

So how exactly do you save humanity from oppression and tyranny?  How exactly do you ensure a country’s independence, and a people’s release from poverty?  In short, how is Iran to give to the world the balanced, human leadership, and the moral, intellectual and political lead that Imam Khomeini wanted it to give?

Main cause of the present global crisis

The answer is first to consider the main cause of the present global crisis which is what finance capitalism claims is the secret of the ‘free market’s’ purported success ? namely, conventional endogenous loan money ? but, in reality, is the cause of its failure.  This loan money:-
is created out of nothing (by the pressing of computer buttons) by the banking system has interest (as distinct from administration cost) added
is not directed at the development and spreading of productive (together with the associated purchasing) capacity so as to achieve a Say’s Theorem (Law) balance of supply and demand (with producers and consumers being the same people) while, at the same time, forwarding social and economic justice.
Conventional mainstream economics claims that conventional endogenous loan money serves the needs of the economy by efficiently allocating resources.  But this is not true ? the banking system money does not allocate its interest-bearing money to new productive capacity and its spreading.  Instead, it allocates it to derivatives; to the bidding up of existing asset prices (such as house prices); to consumer credit; to putting individuals, companies and societies into debt, indeed, to anything except the real, productive economy.
Moreover, the paying of interest diminishes the capacity of borrowers to repay and diminishes their capacity to consume.
Lastly, conventional endogenous money requires two lots of financing (one for production and one for consumption when only one lot ? for both production and consumption at the same time ? is necessary).  The result of the two lots of financing is that there is continued inflation.
In short, conventional endogenous loan money concerns itself with the making of money out of money and NOT with the true purposes of the real economy and society, particularly the creation of a true, balanced market economy in which everybody is directly involved.

The purported ‘free market’ is not free, fair or efficient
The failure of conventional endogenous loan money takes place against a background of deceitful propaganda and deception about the ‘free market’.  The truth is that the ‘free market’ is not free, not fair and not efficient and there cannot be true democracy unless all individuals (whether or not in conventional jobs) have their own independent productive capacity giving them their own income.
Furthermore, throughout the world, capital ownership is concentrated ? in some ‘free market’ countries only a handful of families own most of the stock market.  Over-concentration of economic power and the prevention of the operation of a true free market (in which producers and consumers are the same people) are prime causes of autocracy and poverty.
Indeed, mainstream economics is fundamentally flawed and that is because it is based on many false assumptions ? fifty three false assumptions have been discovered.  This is a matter of considerable importance because if only one assumption is false (or, at the most, two or three assumptions are false) then the whole structure of neoclassical economics becomes invalid.  

All nations are controlled by the Western financial system
But the worst thing of all is that virtually all nations are controlled by the Western financial system which locks nations (and cities, towns, corporations and individuals) into often unrepayable debt.  Nations cannot be truly independent unless they are prepared to strike at the heart of the Western financial system.  That means that all nations must take control of their own money supply; they should avoid relying on foreign capital; and they should have capital controls.

Conventional endogenous loan money to be eliminated
So, because it has detrimental effects and does not serve the purposes of a true, fair, free market, let alone the purposes of society, conventional endogenous loan money must be gradually eliminated.  This can be done by a gradual rise in banking reserves eventually to 100%.  Banks will then be left with the duties of lending (as they are supposed to do) their own capital and (with permission) the deposits of their customers; and of administering interest-free loans stemming from the national bank.
NB.  Banks should be able to lend their own money and that of depositors (with permission) at interest.  But newly-created money is society’s money and so should be used for spreading the real economy, interest-free, to everybody.

The national bank
The interest-free loan money starts with a country’s national bank.  This is important because it means that ultimate ownership of the money is society’s ownership rather than that of private individuals.  Furthermore, the national bank can control the overall volume of money.  
The money is then issued (from the national bank) as interest-free loans to the banking system, to be administered by the banking system only for productive, real economy and wide ownership purposes.  The loans are administered generally on free market and efficiency principles (i.e., provision of collateral; ability and intent to repay) and are repaid, firstly, to the commercial bank which then repays the money to the central bank.  In essence a commercial bank would be able to make an administrative charge but not add interest because it would not actually own the money. Because no riba/interest is involved the general result is of a halving or more of the cost of new productive capacity; a wider distribution of productive and consuming power; a much greater efficiency, and a much greater social and economic justice.  Just as importantly, debt is reduced and national independence is increased.  All this is known as binary economics.

5. BINARY ECONOMICS

Specific uses of national bank-issued interest-free loans
Binary interest-free loans combine efficiency with social and economic justice.  They are directly related to the real economy, made repayable and, when repaid, are cancelled or cancellable thus ensuring that productive assets always back a society’s currency.  
Crucially ? because interest is not necessary ? the binary loans allow capital projects to be constructed for one half, or one third, or even less, of the present cost.  Moreover, the loans cannot be inflationary ? the loans must be repaid and, when repaid, are cancelled thus leaving the assets behind in existence.

NB.  All binary uses of the money supply should be interest-free, but other uses of the money supply should have higher interest rates.

Mechanism for, and uses of, the binary interest-free loans
In the case of public capital projects (e.g., roads, bridges, hospitals, schools, waterworks, fire stations, sewage works, etc.) the mechanism for the binary loans is simple ? the central bank creates and then lends interest-free money to the government for the purposes of the government’s own capital expenditure.  However, the capital projects can still, if wished, be built by the private sector, and managed by the private sector.  For the private sector, the central bank lends interest-free money to the banking system which then administers it on market principles including the existence of collateral as well as ability and willingness to repay.  In the case of large corporations, the key condition for the use of interest-free loans is that the investment is associated with the creation of new shareholders thereby distributing the ownership of new capital assets throughout the population.
Thus the essence and rationale of the binary  loan mechanism is that, as long as the money is lent for defined productive purposes including wide ownership, the government and the commercial banks should be able to administer a supply of interest-free money (from the central bank) to be lent, interest-free, to satisfy those purposes.  

The purposes in the private sector divide into three main areas:?
For small businesses
When small or start-up businesses, including farms, have to borrow interest-bearing money, the chances of thei survival considerably diminish.  But interest is not necessary when money is put into productive capacity, as in a small business.  Tehre is no need for a small business to be burdened with the crushing burden of interest-bearing debt.  As long as there is scrutiny to ensure that the business has a viable proposal and there is appropriate provision for collateral and administration cost, there is no reason for there to be interest at all.  

For micro-credit
The Grameen Bank (which has a 96%+ repayment rate) could receive interest-free money, lend it on to its usual clients and then repay the money to the central bank thereby halving the cost to the clients.  Other micro-credit organisations could similarly halve the costs of borrowing for the customers.

For large corporations
The interest-free lending to large corporations is only if the investment creates new owners of capital and is part of policy to enable all individuals, over time, on market principles, to become owners of substantial amounts of productive capital.  By using central bank-issued interest-free loans, administered by the banking system on the market principles of binary economics, a large corporation would get cheap money.  Wide ownership ? on the principles of binary economics ? uses interest-free money to enable any person in the population, over time on market principles, to have a basket of shares paying out their true, full earnings.

In practice it means that not only employees but people not in formal employment (e.g., women carers and children) may have an income because they have been connected to what truly creates wealth ? the productive capital assets of large corporations.  This is important because, the spreading of capital ownership and its associated income will, over time, enable all members of society to have a basic income independently of whether or not they are in the conventional labour market.  Thus all people become productive and so have the income that comes from their production as capital owners) thereby enabling them to be consumers.

However, a key condition for the use of interest-free loans is that the investment must be associated with the creation of new shareholders thereby distributing the ownership of new, future capital assets throughout the population.  The assets pay for themselves out of what they will earn in the future.

Another key condition would be that all large corporations would be required to pay out all their earnings except for reserves for research, depreciation and development.  This requirement is necessary to ensure that:-

corporations are encouraged to accept interest-free loans with the associated responsibility of widening ownership in the economy
the loan is repaid at a competitive rate over a reasonable period of time
the beneficiaries receive all the income coming from capital productiveness
the entire economy is able to achieve sustainable aggregate growth and distributive justice on market principles.
For medium companies/corporations
Interest-free loans should also be available for medium-sized companies and corporations if the loans are associated with the widening of ownership.  However, unlike large corporations, medium-sized corporations would not be required to make a full payout of earnings (except for reserves for research, depreciation and development), so that they would have the option of expanding via retained earnings.  
Once the interest-free loan is accepted, however, full payout of earnings in future would be required.
Lastly, green capital investment is essential, particularly for clean, renewable energy.  At present, using interest-bearing loans, a lot of green technology is not financially viable.  With interest-free loans, however, it would become viable.  Thus we could have, for example, clean electricity through tidal barrages, dams, windmills, wave machines, solar electricity, and geothermal power stations.  
Visual summary of binary economics
A gradual rise to 100% banking reserves requirement stops the banking system from creating money out of nothing.  Banks may lend their own money or that of depositors (with permission) and such lending may be at interest.

NB.  All the uses of newly-created money are to be binary uses in which the money is lent interest-free.  Other uses of the money supply should have much higher interest rates.

Interest-free loans for productive purposes come from
OR and are lent to approved institutions which may charge for
administration cost but may NOT add interest as they lend for thereby halving or more the cost

Binary Economics spreads ownership

The use of the national bank as the ultimate source of the money supply is essential if countries are to become genuinely independent.  Moreover, without the use of the national bank interest-free money supply, the Iranian Revolution will not, in practice, be capable of developing sufficiently so as to give the world a political, economic and moral lead to a world sorely in need of such a lead.
Reply
#34
ERDOGAN CONDEMNS ISRAELI RAID ON GAZA AID SHIP

Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan to Zionists: "We are sick of your lies" "This operation, which is completely against international law, is an act of inhuman state terror," "Don't think that we'll sit by in silence after such events."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3iJ_J_ozVYM
&feature

GAZA SOURS ISRAEL-TURKEY RELATIONS
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ISfP84rMPCc&feature=related


TURKEY, ISRAEL LEADERS CLASH AT DAVOS
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tgji3ipxW-A&feature=related


Erdogan to Israel: Don't test our patience

Turkish prime minister calls IDF's operation against flotilla to Gaza
'massacre', 'state terror', 'piracy'; says Israelis must pressure gov't to
cease such acts.

During a speech before the Turkish parliament in Ankara, Erdogan said the flotilla was legal, and the operation against it was a violation of the
spirit of the UN. He added that the unjustified attack against the flotilla
was "a blow to world peace and against international law."

"Turkey's friendship is as strong as its animosity," he said. "The Israeli
nation must pressure its government to cease such acts. All detainees must be released, including parliament members and the 60 Turkish journalists. Israel will not be able to show itself in the world until it apologizes for what happened and undergoes self-criticism. It is destroying its alliances one after the other."

Due to the flotilla events, Erdogan cut short his visit to South America and returned to Ankara. During talks with Chilean reporters before his return, he said the events were "state terror" and called for an emergency NATO meeting to discuss the escalation.

"This operation, which is completely against international law, is an act of inhuman state terror," he said. "Don't think that we'll sit by in silence
after such events."



THE MUSLIM RULERS’ SUPPORT OF ISRAEL
http://www.hizb.org.uk/hizb/resources/is...srael.html

"If I were an Arab leader, I would never sign an agreement with Israel. It is normal; we have taken their country. It is true God promised it to us, but how could that interest them? Our God is not theirs. There has been Anti - Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They see but one thing: we have come and we have stolen their country. Why would they accept that?"

David Ben Gurion – First Israeli Prime Minister (1)

This statement made by Ben Gurion in 1948 reveals a great deal about the status of the Muslim Rulers in the eyes of Zionists. Even Ben Gurion the first prime minister of Israel regarded the act of signing an agreement by a Muslim ruler with the state of Israel as a betrayal of the people they represented. However, today the Muslims rulers are not content in their betrayal by signing treaties with the state of Israel, they are working to normalise relations between this illegal entity and the Muslim countries and they also oppose any resistance to the occupying state of Israel. This is why Ben Gurion regarded the Muslim rulers to be in the Israeli camp when he said that the Arab regimes are the first line of defence for Israel, he also said “the Moslem regime is artificial and easy for us to undermine”(2). What he means by artificial is that these Muslim rulers have been artificially imposed on the Muslim Ummah ever since the Uthmani Khilafah was destroyed in 1924.

The failure of the Muslim rulers to respond to the aggression carried out over the years by non-Muslim states against the Muslim Ummah has exposed the betrayal of the Muslim rulers. The ultimate betrayal was witnessed during the recent war between Israel and Hizbullah, when Muslim rulers blamed Hizbullah for instigating the war.

The war was in fact instigated by Israel in its plan to disarm Hizbullah, which is the only military force in the region resisting Israel and protecting the people from Israeli aggression. Most of the biased western media outlets put the blame on Hizbullah for instigating the war, but when we examine a UN report on the matter of the conflict since the Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon in 2000 the report mentions many Israeli violations:

“Regarding air violations, the report stated that Israeli aircraft violated the line on an almost daily basis, penetrating deep into Lebanese airspace”(Jan-July 2001)

“Of equal concern, stated the Secretary-General, were Israeli air violations of the Blue Line, which continued on an almost daily basis, penetrating deep into Lebanese airspace. These incursions were not justified and caused great concern to the civilian population, particularly low-altitude flights that break the sound barrier over populated areas.”(Jan-Jul 2002)

“The Secretary-General also voiced deep concern that “ Israel persists in its provocative and unjustified air violations of sovereign Lebanese territory. Hezbollah's retaliatory firing of anti-aircraft rounds across the Blue Line "is a violation that poses a direct threat to human life", he added.” (Jan-July 2004).

Secretary-General report to the Security Council in 2001/2002/2004

So in the words of the Secretary General in 2004, it was Israel, which was the provocateur and Hizbullah was only responding to the Israeli aggression.

As regards to the “kidnapping” of Israel soldiers, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) 2006 report on Israel explained:

“At the end of 2005, approximately 11,200 Palestinians were held by Israel in interrogation units, temporary detention centres, military detention camps, prisons and police stations”

“12,192 detainees visited, including 7,504 monitored individually (of whom 131 women and 565 minors)”

The document states that ICRC issued documents to 17,882 detainees, so the total number of detainees being held illegally may be much higher. These numbers quoted are the detainees which ICRC has access to. There are a large number of Muslims who have gone missing and are therefore not reported in these figures. Most of the detainees have been either abducted or kidnapped on the streets in Palestine or Lebanon. It is worth noting that 565 are minors. So, when Israel claims that it has been provoked into this war with Lebanon due the kidnapping of three Israeli soldiers by Hizbullah, it is nothing but a complete distortion of the truth. It is clear to see that in fact Israel is the provocateur.

The facts presented above are well known in the region and especially by the Muslim rulers, and yet they blamed Hizbullah for instigating the war, which allowed them to lay the basis for their inaction. They even sought to promote divisions in the Muslim Ummah by calling the issue a sectarian one along the lines of Shia and Sunni, highlighting the fact that Hizbullah is Shia and is supported by Iran. The main reason for their inaction is that they do not serve the interest of this Ummah, rather they serve the interest of their colonial masters America and Britain.

According to Abdullah Mohamed, professor of international relations at Kuwait University:

“Blaming Hezbollah is a message to the U.S. from these countries, which says they are sources of stability and will continue to serve U.S. interests in the region,''

President Mubaraks statement reflects the stance of a Muslim ruler in the area:

"Those who urge Egypt to go to war to defend Lebanon or Hezbollah are not aware that the time of exterior adventures is over,"
"Those who are asking for war will make us lose all of that in a blink,"
"The Egyptian army is for defending Egypt only and this is not going to change,"

Press Trust of India - Cairo, July 26, 2006

These rulers once promoted Arab unity and they also claim to profess Muslim unity through the Organisation of Islamic Conferences (OIC). But when challenged to act on this unity they profess self-interest. The statement of Mubarak reminds us of Musharaf’s words when Afghanistan was invaded by the US in 2002, he said: “Pakistan first”.

But don’t be fooled into thinking that they will even defend the nation state, as we know with Iraq, Sadaam Hussein did not release the armies to defend the nation against the invading US force, it was the people and individual soldiers who took up arms to defend Baghdad in 2003. In fact the statements made by King Adbullah of Jordan , King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and Hosni Mubarak criticizing Hizbullah implicitly gave justification for Israel’s attack and she took it as a green light to invade Lebanon.

The Muslim rulers have cited many excuses for their inaction, the main one being the superiority of Israel’s military and that confronting Israel will bring harm to their national economies. Let us examine what options are actually available to these rulers:

 Military – Direct confrontation
 Economic and cultural isolations of Israel.

Militarily

Published figures show that the Muslim armies combined outnumber the Israeli forces by a ratio of 68 Muslim soldiers to one Israeli soldier. The Muslim countries spend almost 17 times more on their military budgets than Israel. So it is clear that a united Muslim armed force is the dominant military power in the region. Even with their advanced military technology, the Israelis cannot overcome such a large military force.

Population

Military Manpower

Military Manpower
fit for service

Military Expenditure
$bn
Israel 7,112,359
3,353,936 2,836,722 11.8187

Egypt 81,713,520 41,654,185 35,558,995
13.7836

Iran 65,875,224
39,815,026 34,344,352
19.0725
Jordan 6,198,677 3,371,706 2,886,132
2.4467
Syria 19,747,586 10,218,242
10,218,242 5.33183
Saudi 28,146,656 14,928,539 8,461,049 54.6
Turkey 71,892,808 39,645,893 33,444,999 45.2567
Yemen 23,013,376 9,932,593
3,585,947 3.71184
Libya 6,173,579 3,293,184
2,821,855
2.91408

Lebanon 3,971,941
2,229,474
1,883,155
1.25364

Kuwait 2,596,799
1,601,065
1,393,356
7.42

Oman 3,311,640
1,429,296
1,207,291
6.94146

Morocco 34,343,220
18,233,410
15,382,861
6.25

Algeria 33,769,668
19,327,735
16,357,759
7.3359

Tunisia 10,383,577
5,905,068
5,005,257 1.06498

Sudan 40,218,456
18,961,029
11,264,895
2.4294


Muslim - Middle East
431,356,727
230,582,445
182,058,952 179.81263



Also, after a brief glance at the borders of Israel, it is clear that it would be virtually impossible for Israel to defend itself from a simultaneous land offensive from Egypt, Jordan and Syria. You may be wondering have not these states engaged in a war against Israel before. Yes they have, but those wars were in reality ‘scenario wars’ with the objective of seeking peace with Israel.

This was mentioned by Mohammed Heikal's in his book "The Road to Ramadan" - he quotes one of Sadat's generals, Mohammed Fouwzi who gave the analogy of a samurai drawing two swords - a long one and short one in preparation for battle. Fouwzi said that this battle ( the 1967-six day war) would be a case of the short sword, signifying a limited battle for certain motives. Indeed, this gross betrayal by of the Ummah by Egypt is currently matched by Turkey who assists Israel in her military exercises. As a Turkish news agency stated;


"Billion-dollar military agreements, intelligence cooperation, maneuvers and secret operations are being made between Turkey and Israel. Israeli war planes are flying over Konya. A common missile shield project is on the agenda between the two countries; it’s under consideration for the missiles to be located on the borders of Iran and Syria. In a 20 thousand square kilometre area in the Konya valley, there were maneuvers of hundreds of planes making a nuclear attack. Dozens of examples like this can be shown. In short, Turkey is Israel’s friend and ally" – (http://www.zaman.com/?bl=columnists&alt=&trh=20060824&hn=35945)

Economic blockade

It may be stating the obvious but the Israel is land, sea and air locked by the Muslim countries. So Israel is dependent on the Muslim countries for its survival and for access to the outside world. What would be the impact of a Sea, Land and Air blockade?

Sea Blockade



Some 98% (by weight) of Israel's imports and exports travel by sea (www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org). Just as Israel with its minute naval force imposed a sea blockade on Lebanon, it would be easy for Egypt, Syria and Turkey to impose a sea blockade on Israel further up the Mediterranean sea. Israel imports 90% of the oil it consumes, majority of which is imported by oil tankers. This blockade will have a major impact on its Energy requirements. The major oil ports are at Ashkelon and Eilat, currently the port at Ashkelon receives oil from Russia in tankers via the Bosphorus, which is controlled by Turkey. In 1989 Egypt supplied about 45% of Israel's oil needs but this has been gradually replaced by Russian oil, currently it is still around 26-30%. The oil tankers arriving at Eilat have to pass though the Gulf of Aqaba whose waters are controlled by Saudi Arabia and Egypt. This is a narrow waterway and a blockade can easily be implemented. The port at Eilat is strategic as it will become a key point of distribution for the central Asian oil to the world market, BP plans to pump oil through Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil and gas pipelines via Turkey through the Israeli Tipline pipeline to Eilat. All the routes require the consent of the Muslim countries. Continuing on the theme of Energy requirements Egypt signed an agreement with Israel in July 2005 to supply Israel between "1.7 to 3 billion cubic feet of natural gas annually for 15 years."( www.arabicnews.com).

The blockade would simply nullify the following treaty, which really exposes how treacherous our rulers have been in aiding Israel:

“Ships of Israel, and cargo destined for or coming from Israel, shall enjoy the right of free passage through the Suez Canal and its approach through the Gulf of Suez and the Mediterranean Sea on the basis of the Constantinople convention of 1888”

“The parties consider the strait of Tiran and the Gulf of Aqaba to be international waterways open to all nations for unimpeded and non-suspendable freedom of navigation and overflight.

“it is agreed that such relations will include normal commercial sales of oil by Egypt to Israel, and that Israel shall be fully entitled to make bids for Egyptian-origin oil”( Treaty Of Peace Between The State Of Israel and The Arab Republic of Egypt - 26/03/1979)

Treaty Of Peace Between The State Of Israel and The Arab Republic of Egypt - 26/03/1979

The sea blockade would also curb the shipment of vitally needed water to Israel from Turkey. Israel and Turkey signed a 'water for arms' agreement in Jan 2004 where Turkey would “ship 50 million cubic metres of water a year for 20 years from the river Manavgat in Anatolia”(Guardian UK) to Israel in water tankers.

Land Blockade

The following trade agreement meant that goods were traded across the borders between Israel Egypt and Jordan:

Agreement on Trade and Commerce (08/05/1980) – “To ensure the free movement of goods between the two countries, each party will make available to the other party, laws, regulations and procedures prevailing in his country, concerning the importation and exportation of goods and commodities”. “Both nations shall accord each other most favoured nation treatment”.

The impact of this treaty has been the increase of exports from Israel to Egypt and Jordan as the report mentions below:

“Israel’s exports to Egypt and Jordan in January-May 2006 increased, thanks to the Qualifying Industrial Zone (QIZ) export agreements with Israel's two neighboring countries…. Exports to Egypt rose 93% to US$48.7 million”
(http://www.port2port.com)

A land blockade would affect trade, mail and communication between Israel and the international community.


Air Blockade

Air Transport Agreement - 08/05/1980 – “To fly without landing across the territory of the other Contracting Party.”. “To make stops in the said territory for non traffic purposes … Agreement for the purpose of putting down and taking on international passengers, cargo and mail to and from the territory of the other Contracting Party.”

International flights to and from Israel utilise the air corridors over Muslim countries. Imposing a blockade would greatly impact tourism and vital communication channels, which are required for the state of Israel to operate.

The Muslim states have supported the call for the Ummah to boycott Israeli goods on an individual level but nothing is done at the state level. So the Ummah very effectively boycotted the Israeli and American goods. So much so that the boycott in 2002 against American products by the Muslims in Saudi Arabia resulted in a $2 billion drop in US exports. But this is insignificant when we compare it to the investment of the Gulf countries in the US. It was reported by Pravda the Russian newspaper that the total assets of the six Persian Gulf countries are evaluated in the sum of 1.4 trillion dollars, 75% of which resides in the G8 countries. The figure is likely to be double if not more when we consider indirect investment and joint venture with the western countries that Gulf States indulge in. The $1 trillion lawsuit brought against Saudi Arabia by the families of the US attack exposed the Saudi investment in the US to be around $750 billion (Aug 2002 -BBC).


Cultural Blockade


On an area such as Education, Media and Culture, treaties have been signed between Israel and its Muslim neighbours. The aim of this is to dilute the Islamic culture and to make Israel more acceptable to the Muslim societies. The following are three example of such treaties:


Education-Protocol On The Establishment Of The Israeli Academic Center in Cairo (25/02/1982) – “Two parties have agreed to establish an Israeli academic center in Cairo …. The centre will be established by the Israeli Oriental Society ….. ”, “provide hospitality and assistance to Israeli citizens on scholarships and visiting scholars”. “ Conduct seminars for its visiting scholars and researchers and provide opportunity for them to meet and cooperate with Egyptian scholars and researchers”.

Media- Protocol Of Cooperation Between The Israel Broadcasting Authority And The Radio And T.V. Union Of The Arab Republic of Egypt - 16/02/1982 – “The parties shall exchange Radio and Television programmes and Television films, reflecting culture, social, economic and scientific life in their countries”

Cultural –Cultural Agreement Between The State of Israel - 08/05/1980 –
“both parties shall encourage and promote youth and sport activities youth and sports institutions in each country”. “ Both Parties shall encourage co-operation in the cultural, artistic and scientific field…” ... “Exchange of cultural, educational and scientific publications”.

It doesn’t end here. We know that the purpose of creating the PLO was to shift the responsibility of defending the Muslims of Palestine and protecting Masjid Al- Aqsa to a nationalistic organisation such as the PLO. In fact, this is the responsibility of the Muslim rulers who clearly have the capability to do so but try to deflect public expectations away from themselves. Similarly, the stance taken when the issue of boycotting Israel arises is to encourage the Ummah to boycott Israeli goods and even American goods for it’s support of Israel. But they themselves deceive this Ummah by importing Israeli products under the label of Muslim companies. It was reported in 2002 that a total of $150 million worth of Israeli goods were imported into Saudi Arabia alone through 72 companies in Jordan, 70 companies in Cyprus, 23 companies in Egypt and 11 companies from Turkey. These regimes use a third country to disguise the source of the goods (Deutsche Presse-Agentur).


Conclusion

One may think that this is a simplistic view of the situation and it is not easy to move the army and it is difficult to get agreement on implementing sanctions and blockade on a country. If that was the case then why did the Muslim Rulers assemble a force and join the Anglo American coalition to remove Sadaam from Kuwait. Surely in the eyes of the UN and the international community the invasion of Kuwait by Sadaam Hussien is no different to the invasion of Lebanon by Israel. Is it possible for the UN to impose sanctions, the no fly zones and the sea blockade for 10 years without the collaboration of the Muslim rulers? Just like Israel, Iraq is also surrounded by Muslim countries. It was the Muslim rulers, which actually implemented the sanctions. Can you recall any ruler opposing or violating these sanctions?

By now the question that should be on your mind is how do we rid ourselves of these rulers. A number of option have been suggested to us, such as vote them out. We have seen so called democratic elections in the Muslim world since the end of World War II and yet they have not produced any change. They have only hindered change and reinforced the status quo. There has been numerous attempts to bring change by arms struggle, this has only created instability and destruction and brought us back to where we started.

The problem is that Muslims have fallen into the trap of taking their policies from these corrupt regimes and their Western supporters who have always misled them. But our policies, as with everything else, lies in the example of our beloved Prophet Muhammed (SAW).


Only the Khilafah, the Islamic system of ruling, can unify the Muslim lands and sweep the divisions that the colonialists have placed amongst the Muslims to keep them in a perpetual state of weakness and backwardness. Only the Khilafah government will establish a government independent of Western control that is obliged to protect the life and honour of the Muslims and other citizens. The solutions proposed are meant to ensure that such comprehensive change is never achieved.


Hizb ut-tahrir is a global political party that is working in many countries in the Muslim world to lead the Ummah to reestablish the Khilafah. It works politically to unfying people at all levels of society in their efforts to establish the state and to bring comprehensive change.
Find out today how you can work with Hizb ut-Tahrir to establish the Khilafah and liberate the Muslim lands from the Muslim rulers and their colonialist masters.


Muslim narrated on the authority of al-A'araj, on the authority of Abu Hurairah, that the Prophet said: "Behold, the Imam is but a shield from behind whom the people fight and by whom they protect themselves."

Reply
#35
ISLAMIC MOVEMENT SUFFERING FROM LACK OF INTELLECTUAL INSTITUTIONAL INFRASTRUCTURE
http://crescenticit.com/columns/3-perspe...cture.html



Like so many activists and institutions in the Islamic movement, we at Crescent International take the unity of the Ummah as a basic assumption and premise of everything that we do. As we have so often affirmed, the understanding that what we all have in common as Muslims far outweighs our many differences is fundamental to converting the theoretical principle of Muslim unity into a practical reality, particularly at a time when Islamic movements around the world both face unprecedented challenges, and have unique opportunities.

Merely sharing this fundamental understanding, however, is not enough. The global Islamic movement is not organizationally or institutionally a single entity; instead it consists of countless scholars, intellectuals, activists, groups and movements, operating separately and independently, and following different strategies, methods and priorities according to their perceptions of the circumstances in their own parts of the world. Despite their theoretical understanding of the unity of the Ummah, most of these activists and movements have trouble relating their own struggles with those of other movements and of the fragmented Ummah as a whole.

One lesson of a life spent working in Islamic causes of one sort or another is that the wider perspective tends to get lost as organizations and individuals become consumed with the pressures of smaller and more local, but also more tangible and immediate, projects. The Muslim Institute in London — now sadly defunct — is a case in point. It was conceived in the 1970s by Dr. Kalim Siddiqui and those working with him as a think-tank for encouraging Muslim intellectual work in preparation for a possible future Islamic revival. The Islamic Revolution in Iran in 1978–79 gave this work an immediate resonance and relevance, and through the 1980s the Muslim Institute served as a genuine and effective intellectual centre for Islamic movement activists from all round the world. In particular it hosted international seminars in London at which activists from every corner of the globe could come together to discuss issues such as the legacy of colonialism, the problems of nationalism and nation-states, understandings of state and politics, and the centrality of Hajj. As important as the formal discussions on the topics of the seminars were the general circulation of ideas among the delegates, and the contacts established between Islamic activists from all parts of the Ummah, from revolutionary Iran and the Arab heartlands of Islam, to Turkey, the Asian sub-continent, north and west Africa, south-east Asia, and Muslim communities in the global diaspora. Over two decades later, those associated with the Muslim Institute at that time still meet activists who remember and appreciate those seminars wherever we may go.

The world, of course, has changed in those two decades. As a result of the impact of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, and on the pretext of the “security threat” posed by al-Qaeda-type groups since 9/11, Islamic movements all over the world are subject to persecution and controls that make it impossible for such gatherings ever to be held anywhere, let alone in a western capital such as London. Some of those who attended those conferences are in American or other jails; others are deeply involved in local affairs, political or otherwise, in their own countries; some are no longer involved in the movement at all. The Muslim Institute itself no longer exists, its attention and resources, like those of Dr. Kalim himself late in his life, having been consumed by local issues in Britain, particularly the establishment of the Muslim Parliament of Great Britain in the early 1990s. The fact that both the Institute and the Parliament fell into disrepair (and in the case of the latter, disrepute) after Dr. Kalim’s death in 1996 makes those seminars and the intellectual environment that they engendered seem all the farther away. Of all the institutions that Dr. Kalim established to serve Muslims and the Islamic movement, only Crescent International still survives, such as it is. (For more information on the Muslim Institute and Dr. Kalim Siddiqui, see the website of the Institute of Contemporary Islamic Thought, www.islamicthought.org).

But the role that the Muslim Institute originally set out to fulfil, that of providing a platform for the generation and circulation of ideas within the Islamic movement, remains desperately needed. The movement is full of writers, commentators, analysts and scholars producing ideas and writings and putting them out for public consumption and consideration; but most unfortunately are reaching only limited audiences, and few are effectively engaging in any meaningful exchange of ideas with others in similar positions. The main reason for this is that the platforms on which such writings are published tend to be of limited perspective and reach; and the few that aspire to be something more usually fail because of the limitations of their resources, quality and management. What the Islamic movement lacks is an infrastructure for the circulation and exchange of ideas; and this absence is the greatest hindrance to the intellectual revolution that the movement needs to progress further from the situation established by the Islamic Revolution in Iran, which other movements have failed to emulate for various reasons.

In the hegemonic West, this role is fulfilled by the global network of universities, research institutions, academic professional associations, think-tanks, journals and publishers that provide a support system and sources of patronage for intellectuals working within the Western framework, wherever they may be. By engaging with institutions in this network, intellectuals and would-be intellectuals anywhere can engage in debates with others anywhere in the world, and identify themselves as part of a global community of thinkers working on similar ideas. The ethos of this network also channels intellectual work in certain directions by rewarding those who accept its parameters, and tacitly accept the legitimacy of Western hegemony, while excluding and marginalising those who reject it. Among the young Islamic activists who attended the Muslim Institute’s seminars in the 1980s are several who have subsequently forged careers in mainstream academia and in the process lost touch with their roots in the movement. In many cases, they went into these positions genuinely determined to use them for the furthering of their Islamic ideals, but were unable to resist the socialisation inherent in working in those institutions. Elsewhere there are countless Muslim intellectuals who chose to work outside mainstream institutions, but have struggled to be heard at all, let alone to engage effectively in any larger discourse.

Such negative factors apart, the key role this infrastructure plays is in circulating Western ideas, providing a global discourse within which intellectuals can place their work, and integrating them into a community of thinkers engaged in a collective intellectual enterprise. Providing the Islamic movement — then much more vaguely perceived, of course — with a platform and a framework for integrating Muslim intellectuals into a global community of thinkers, reflecting the unity of the Ummah, was a key element of Dr. Kalim’s thinking when he established the Muslim Institute. In his final book, Stages of Islamic Revolution, completed and published shortly before his death in April 1996, he reiterated the need for an intellectual revolution, and outlined the “open university of Islam” that the movement needed to generate the ideas of this revolution.

The Islamic movement, and the world historical situation that it faces, have moved on greatly since 1996, let alone since the Muslim Institute seminars in the 1980s or the foundation of the Institute in the mid-1970s. So too, thanks to the internet, has the nature of intellectual and public discourse. But the fundamental need for an intellectual infrastructure that can help realise the unity of the fragmented and diverse Ummah in the form of a single community of Muslim intellectuals engaged in a global discourse in pursuit of the goals of the Islamic movement remains as great as ever. The task of fulfilling this need awaits the attention of those who recognise its importance and potential.


Iqbal Siddiqui is a former editor of Crescent International (1998–2008). He now publishes a personal blog, ‘A Sceptical Islamist’:
http://scepticalislamist.typepad.com.


Reply
#36
PAKISTAN: DEATH OF A DREAM AND AN IDEAL  
http://www.crescent-online.org/main-stor...-ideal.htm

Pakistan turns 63 this month but it would be difficult to say a great deal positive about its style of governance or development in all these years. True, its birth was marred by great suffering and bloodshed, not in a formal war but during the migration of millions of people that were uprooted from their homes in India in August 1947. Since independence, far from matching its traditional enemy India’s economic progress, Pakistan has lagged behind even those countries — South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, etc — that gained independence much later. Perhaps the only area where it can rightly take some pride is in the nuclear field, thanks to the indefatigable efforts of Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan, who has since been vilified and accused of all manner of sins, under pressure from Pakistan’s godfather, Uncle Sam. And Pakistan’s nuclear achievements are being undermined by paid agents of the US masquerading as academics and professors in Pakistani universities.


So what exactly went wrong in Pakistan despite the enormous sacrifices but also great hopes that were aroused immediately at its birth? Initially the people were very enthusiastic in giving a helping hand. There was immense optimism and determination to get things right and get the new country on its feet as quickly as possible. No doubt, the early days were extremely difficult and had it not been for people’s support and enthusiasm the country may not have survived but its current plight leaves little room for optimism. It is not only an economic basketcase, its ruling elites are thoroughly corrupt and incompetent. The president, Asif Ali Zardari, a street urchin, is an indicted thief and criminal. It is a disgrace that a person like him should be ensconced in the presidency but perhaps this is reflective of the sad state of affairs in Pakistan.

Before we look at some statistics that show the grim reality facing the people, it would be worthwhile to consider how the “Pakistan project” was derailed at its inception. Pakistan was created in the name of Islam; there is no other rationale for its existence. Take away Islam and the entire argument for Pakistan’s existence crumbles yet the ruling elites are busy obliterating Islam from every facet of life. The Muslim masses had supported the idea of an Islamic State modeled on the Khilafah with social, economic and political justice for all; the elites simply wanted a nation-state in which they would not have to compete with the more wily Hindus had they remained part of India. Besides, most of the feudal lords that jumped on the Pakistan bandwagon did so out of opportunism rather than any faith or conviction in the Pakistan ideal. When Pakistan’s creation became certain, they joined the movement they had hitherto shunned with disdain. Besides, these feudal lords were the off-springs of people that had betrayed the Muslims by becoming willing tools of the British colonialists. Their sole mission in life was and remains personal interest; morals and decency have no place in their thought or lexicon.  

This explains the vast chasm that exists between the thinking of the elites and the common man in the street or village. The vast majority of Pakistan’s people are simple, honest, decent and hardworking. These are values they have imbibed from the teachings of the Qur’an and the Sunnah of the noble Messenger (pbuh). Unlike the elites, there is little artificiality about them; they would like to see Islamic values implemented in society but they do not know how. Even the so-called religious leaders have let them down badly. The elites, on the other hand, have tried but failed to impose even the artificial nationalism they are so fond of talking about, in the country. Pakistan is not one society; it is many societies living in a vast chaotic land whose borders were arbitrarily drawn up by the departing British colonialists. The tiny parasitical ruling class sits atop a vast body of impoverished mass of people that struggle to make ends meet.

There is supposed to be a social contract between the state and its people. It rests on certain fundamental principles. People pledge allegiance to the state and respect its laws while the rulers, controlling the state’s resources, are required to meet the social, economic and political needs of the people. The state must also provide a reasonable level of security. In Pakistan, none of these needs is met. There is total lawlessness that has escalated further as a result of US policies and the so-called war on terror. The police and other security agencies provide no protection to the people; instead, they often brutalize them. The sole function of these agencies appears to be to protect the elites. For instance, in the unlikely event of Zardari venturing out of the heavily guarded presidential bubble, all traffic is blocked for several miles. Streets are emptied of people for the ‘people’s president.’ Multiple convoys of identical bullet-proof cars leave the presidential compound simultaneously to confuse any would-be assassins from targeting the petty man.  

This would be comic but for the fact that such disruptions have become far too frequent. Every minister and high official demands — and gets — elaborate protocol. One upmanship is the name of the game. Government officials of all stripes are only interested in stealing whatever they can from the treasury as well as the people. Most politicians are either feudal lords or industrial barons; few, if any pay taxes. Neither Zardari nor his prime minister, Yusuf Raza Gailani, have responded to queries about what amount, if any, have they paid in taxes. A spokesman for opposition leader Nawaz Sharif said he had been out of the country for the last three years and in any case, he had disbursed all his assets among relatives, in explaining why Sharif had paid no taxes. Jahangir Tareen, a parliamentarian and businessman, who declared his assets and paid his taxes in full, has been trying to introduce a bill in parliament to get other members to declare their assets, but with little success.

Taxes are collected from people on fixed income: office employees, teachers, clerks etc. Less than 2% of Pakistanis pay any income tax. Revenues come primarily from skyrocketing prices of items of daily need, value added tax on commodities that affects the poor the hardest, and foreign aid. In November 2008, Pakistan was forced to go to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a $7.6 billion bailout package; later it was increased to $10.66 billion to avoid defaulting on interest it had to pay on external debt that has now mushroomed to $55 billion. IMF loans always come with stringent conditions: cutting the fiscal deficit by removing food and fuel subsidies, imposing VAT and raising electricity tariffs. All these affect the man in the street, not the elites. The elites’ skewed priorities can be gleaned from the June 5 budget that slashed development funding from the original Rs. 446 billion ($5.3 billion) to Rs. 250 billion ($2.8 billion) while raised defence spending by 17%. Debt servicing and security-related spending will go up to Rs.1.1 trillion ($13.1 billion) in the next fiscal year.

For ordinary people, life has become a never-ending misery. Consider this. Electricity and water are shut off in the scorching summer heat for at least 12 hours a day; traffic has become extremely chaotic and prices of all commodities have skyrocketed. Nearly half the population faces food insecurity that has increased because of the “war on terror” and its fallout on the economy and development. According to a June 2 report by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, food insecurity affects 48.6% of the people in varying degrees; 80 of the 131 districts (61 per cent) are food insecure. Of these, 45 districts (34%) are extremely food insecure, up from 38 in 2003.

Grinding poverty has led to an alarming increase in the number of suicides; this is considered haram (forbidden) in Islam but it reflects the desperation of the poor. News reports say 180 people committed suicide in 2009. This is merely the tip of the iceberg. There are far more people committing suicide than are reported in newspapers which in any case tuck them in the inside pages in one or two lines. A particularly harrowing story may occasionally make it to the front pages. This was the case of a poor rickshaw driver in Lahore, Akbar, who poisoned three of his six daughters before taking the potion himself leaving a grieving wife with three other young daughters, one of them physically handicapped.

The Punjab government has now provided a stipend to the bereaved family only because the case got extensive media coverage, but not before one parliamentarian said suicides were the “Will of God”. Pakistan’s Information Minister, Qamar Zaman Kaira, advised the poor to hand their children over to children’s homes, if they could not feed them. He stopped short of saying they should not have so many children, which is really what he meant. This is still less offensive than what happened two years ago. The brother of a provincial minister in Baluchistan buried three women alive after accusing them of having an illicit affair. No proof beyond the accusation was offered. This was justified in the country’s National Assembly and proclaimed as the “right thing” to do! How one longs for imposing the death penalty by stoning for adulterers in Pakistan; few Members of the National Assembly (MNAs) would escape punishment, starting with Asif Ali Zardari who is a well-known philanderer and indulged in such behaviour even while his wife, Benazir Bhutto was alive.

This is one part of the problem. An equally serious problem is the attitude of entitlement. Not only ministers and generals but also MNAs and their children think they own the country and are entitled to privileged treatment. An incident that occurred in the Defence Housing Society in Karachi on June 6 is reflective of this mindset. Syed Ataur Rehman, a retired Air Vice Marshal, was driving with his son when a huge Land Rover/Land Ranger occupying the entire road came from the opposite direction. The air vice marshal was forced to take evasive action otherwise his car would have been crushed. Upset at such behaviour, he shouted at the driver of the Land Rover to drive carefully. Instead of apologizing for such inconsiderate behaviour, the driver of the Land Rover, a youth of about 18, reversed his vehicle and jumping out of it together with two heavily armed bodyguards, started to attack the air vice marshal and his son. Soon, a police van also arrived and they too started to abuse and beat up the air vice marshal before driving away. The air vice marshal was able to note the license plate number of the vehicle; it was registered not in Pakistan but in Abu Dhabi: No. 80587. It also had an MNA plate on it.

The badly shaken air vice marshal reported the matter to the police as well as to the air force. The vehicle was traced to one Amir Magsi, MNA from Larkhana, the same constituency as that of Benazir Bhutto and Zardari. Under pressure from the military and air force, Amir Magsi offered an apology to the air vice marshal who let the matter drop because, as he put it, one of his brothers is governor of Baluchistan, others are MNAs and MPAs. Clearly, the Magsis are a powerful feudal family and few people would like to cross their path. What entitles MNAs and their sons/ daughters to behave in such manner? If they can attack a retired senior air force officer, what chance do ordinary people have in seeking redress for gross injustices? Many of these feudal lords, including the Bhuttos, run private jails on their vast estates. Benazir-doting western journalists please note.

It is such behaviour that has contributed to the mushrooming of militant groups in the country. True, American presence and brutality have also added to the problem but one can see where the country is heading. It is certainly not heading in the right direction and there appear few if any prospects of things getting right any time soon. In a recent conversation with this writer, a senior member of Nawaz Sharif’s party said “Mian Sahib wants to prevent a revolution from taking place in Pakistan.” It is not surprising to hear such talk: “Mian Sahib” is part of the problem; if he really cared for the people of Pakistan, he would be leading them in the almost certain-to-erupt revolution that is brewing in Pakistan. The only uncertainty is: how bloody it will be and whether there is a sincere leader who can lead people in the right direction.

Grinding poverty, gross injustices, the rapacious lifestyle of the elites protected in their air-conditioned bubbles by huge phalanx of bodyguards and the frightening influence of America in every facet of life are driving the country to the brink. Few would lament the demise of the current corrupt system. What will replace it is something nobody has given much thought to. This is Pakistan’s real tragedy.


PAKISTAN FLOOD CRISIS RAISES FEAR OF COUNTRY'S COLLAPSE

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — The humanitarian and economic disaster caused by the worst floods in Pakistan's history could spark political unrest that could destabilize the government, dealing a major blow to the Obama administration's efforts to fight violent Islamic extremism.

The government's shambling response to floods that have affected a third of the country has some analysts saying that President Asif Ali Zardari could be forced from office, possibly by the military, which has ruled Pakistan for more than half its 63-year history.

Other experts caution that the state itself could collapse, as hunger and destitution trigger explosions of popular anger that was already seething over massive unemployment, high fuel prices, widespread power outages, corruption, and a bloody insurgency by extremists allied with al Qaida.

"The powers that be, that is the military and bureaucratic establishment, are mulling the formation of a national government, with or without the PPP (Zardari's ruling Pakistan Peoples Party)," said Najam Sethi, the editor of the weekly Friday Times. "I know this is definitely being discussed.

"There is a perception in the army that you need good governance to get out of the economic crisis and there is no good governance," he said.

The Obama administration stepped up emergency aid this week to $76 million, anxious to counter the influence of Islamic extremist groups that are feeding and housing victims through charitable front organizations in areas the government hasn't reached.

Some U.S. officials worry that those groups could exploit the crisis to recruit new members and bolster their fight to impose hard-line Islamic rule on nuclear-armed Pakistan.

"I think the mid- to long-term radicalization threat accelerates because of the mass migration and the frustration that is coming from this," said Thomas Lynch, a research fellow at the National Defense University in Washington.

Pakistan is battling militant groups led by the Pakistani Taliban, whose strongholds on the country's northwestern fringe also provide bases to al Qaida, the Afghan Taliban and allied extremists fighting NATO and Afghan troops in neighboring Afghanistan.

The Pentagon announced Friday that a three-ship taskforce carrying 2,000 Marines, Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft, transport helicopters and relief supplies is sailing for Pakistan. It will replace the U.S.S. Peleliu, an amphibious assault vessel steaming off the port of Karachi that's lent 19 helicopters and 1,000 Marines to the aid operations.

U.S. officials, who requested anonymity so they could speak more freely, downplayed the threat of near-term political upheaval, and they dismissed the danger of a coup, saying that the army chief, Gen. Ashfaq Kayani, wants the military out of politics.

"The military is perfectly happy to let the civilian government screw up," one U.S. official said. "The military does not want to take over because they get blamed for all the deficiencies in government."

The potential for serious turmoil, these U.S. officials said, will grow after the floods subside. Then the government must grapple with the task of rebuilding roads, bridges and other infrastructure and caring for millions of impoverished, mostly rural people who've lost their homes, crops and livestock.

"The Pakistani military quickly mobilized to support relief efforts in areas affected by the floods, and . . . seems to be handling things effectively," a second U.S. official said. "The popular ire so far seems directed at the (government). As with any natural disaster, the reconstruction phase can be a challenge, and that's when Pakistan's civilian agencies will need to step up to the plate. That'll be the real test."

The floods have affected 14 million people, of whom at least 1,600 have died and some 3 million have been left homeless. However, the impact will be felt throughout the impoverished country of 180 million.

The World Bank said Friday that an estimated $1 billion worth of crops have been wiped out, raising the specter of food shortages. Damage to irrigation canals, the bank added, will reduce crop yields once the floodwaters are gone.

The situation worsened Friday as authorities ordered the evacuation of Jacobabad, a city of 1.4 million people in southern Sindh province, and forecasters warned that fresh monsoon rains in the mountainous northwest would send a new wave of flooding south down the central Indus River valley over the weekend.

The PPP-led government came to power in 2008 elections that ended the last bout of military rule, which lasted eight years under Gen. Pervez Musharraf.

An economic slide that began just as the Musharraf era was ending has significantly worsened and the current administration is surviving on an International Monetary Fund bailout. It says that the floods could halve economic growth and force it to divert funds from development programs to relief efforts.

Zardari, who went on with a high-rolling official visit to France and Britain while his country grappled with its worst-ever natural disaster, is the focus of much of the anger over the government's inability to cope. He assumed control of the PPP after the assassination of his wife, former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, in December 2007.

Only the courts could legally dismiss him and the government. However, the PPP rules through a minority government, and behind-the-scenes military pressure on its coalition partners could bring it down, forcing new elections, Sethi said.

Another outright coup is considered unlikely, but few people rule it out entirely.

"If the military takes over now, I can assure you that it will be the end of Pakistan, an end which will be punctuated by a very bloody civil war," said Asad Sayeed, a political analyst. "Pakistan is a very divided country right now."

Pakistan has lurched from crisis to crisis. Its most painful episode was the break-up of the country in 1971, when then-East Pakistan seceded and became Bangladesh.

The bloody uprising in East Pakistan received a final push from Islamabad's poor response to a 1970 cyclone that killed an estimated 500,000 people. While there is no equivalent secessionist movement in what's left of Pakistan, some experts worry that the floods could boost popular support for hardline Islamists.

"Within months of Cyclone Bhola, an ideology — Bengali nationalism — feeding off economic deprivation and post-disaster hopelessness took half the country away," columnist Moazzam Hussain reminded readers on Friday in Dawn, the main English-language daily. "This time, a renegade religious ideology — feeding off the consequences of the present disaster — is drooling to take away the remainder."

(Shah is a McClatchy special correspondent. Landay reported from Washington.)
Reply
#37
A MIDDLE EAST WITHOUT BORDERS?

The nation state is ripe for change and people power offers new opportunities for mapping the future of the region.

The modern geography of the Middle East was carved out by British and French colonialists whose sole interest was in sharing the spoils of war between themselves and in maintaining their supremacy over the region in the early part of the 20th century.

The contours of the region, with its immaculately straight lines (see maps of Algeria, Libya, Egypt and Sudan) are much the same today as when they were first drawn up, despite decades of cross-border encroachment and conflict.

Never has an imported concept been so jealously guarded by ruling families and political elites in the Middle East as that of the nation state, together with the holy grail of international relations theory, state sovereignty.

The artificialness of the borders in question is not in doubt. Take a look at any map of the Middle East prior to the 1916 Sykes-Picot Agreement between Britain and France (when the division of the region was finalised with no consideration for the thoughts of the people that lived in it) and you will be hard pressed to find many physical boundaries between, say, Syria to the north-east and Morocco to the west.

What you may find, however, are free-flowing train routes spanning the region. A relic of the old Hejaz Railway, which connected Damascus to Medina, still stands (dilapidated) in the centre of the Syrian capital. It once transported pilgrims to the Muslim holy city in modern-day Saudi Arabia without the need for cumbersome visas and frustrating bureaucrats. But that was obviously some time ago.

Trial and error

Over the course of recent history, Arab leaders have attempted to foster closer unity in the Arab world whether in the form of the 22-member Arab League - "to safeguard the independence and sovereignty [of Arab states]" - or the six-state Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) - as a political, economic and security union in response to the Islamic revolution in Iran.

However, the sanctity of the state itself, and its borders, has been absolute within these blocs.

Possibly the greatest experiment in cross-border union, one which admittedly lasted barely three years, began in 1958, when under a wave of Nasserism sweeping the region, Egypt and Syria (and for a very short period, Iraq) established the United Arab Republic (UAR).

Gamal Abdel-Nasser's demagoguery and penchant for power, however, and the subsequent economic tumult felt in Syria, soon saw an end to that project in 1961.

Theoretically, Egypt and Syria became one, as part of the UAR. Under a single leadership (with devolved power), the UAR was supposed to foster a spirit of togetherness and spur other countries in the region to join up and expand the union.

That the project failed was in no way a reflection of the Egyptian and Syrian peoples' desire to forge a single alliance. Together with the then Yemen Arab Republic, the formation of a United Arab States was also mooted.

That was the last we heard of a pan-Arab national project.

Arguably, the 1990s and the 2000s were the decades of cross-border post-nationalism, especially with the rise of Islamic movements as major political actors whose ideology was premised on Islamic ideals that transcended national borders.

Analyse closely the manifestos of some of these movements, however, and also consider their specific origins, and it soon becomes clear that their political ambitions were, and are, ingrained firmly in the states in which they emerged.

As such, the Islamic Salvation Front was a dominant actor in Algeria and Algeria alone, while the Muslim Brotherhood's focus is on political reformation in Egypt. The Brotherhood's offshoots are similarly specifically state-centric.

These movements may well have ideological underpinnings that aim to replicate the glory days of the early Caliphates or the Ottoman Empire, but realism has dictated that they focus their energies within specific national confines. This is unlikely to change anytime soon.

All for one

Given this recent history, then, is the idea of a borderless Middle East still viable? It may well be when you consider that the globalised nature of the world, in its present form, has thrown up possibilities in the region that would have been inconceivable barely a few years back.

More precisely, the political convulsions that the region is undergoing right now have revealed glaringly the extent to which the problems and, potentially, the solutions to the Arab world's ills are remarkably similar. The political, economic and social suffocation that the people of Tunisia and Egypt have endured, before popular revolutions swept the countries' dictators from power, were near identical. The political, economic and social ailments suffered in Libya, Algeria, Bahrain, Yemen and now Oman are of the same vein.

Obviously, the causes of political unrest across these states are much more nuanced and cannot be reduced to generalisations. However, the future, unsurprisingly, is with the youth, the very demographic that is taking the lead in battling corruption and autocracy and one that is communicating, encouraging and helping others across borders in the spirit and language of togetherness.

Sure, this does not by itself denote that borders are now irrelevant. What it does suggest, however, is that political and economic issues and opportunities cannot be dealt with simply within the confines of borders any longer. The pent-up frustrations of the Arab youth, the economic inequalities, the demands for better representation extend across the entire region. A single voice is emerging in search of a single value: Freedom.

A single political authority is certainly not about to emerge out of the current political turmoil. But such an authority is not necessary. An appropriate governance model for the Arab world to emulate would be that of the European Union (EU). The 27-nation political and economic union is borderless in the sense that its people can live, work and travel in member countries without much hindrance.

Sovereignty is still paramount in the EU but the federalisation of political and economic power is to the benefit of hundreds of millions of Europeans. Granted, the recent economic and financial crisis has called into question the viability of the EU, or more specifically, the single European currency, but the political will remains resolute in defence of the union.

We can probably find a plethora of reasons why a real political and economic union would not work in the Arab world. Take a look at the GCC, for example, a bloc of around 40 million people: After a decade of trying, it is still unable to form a currency union. How are we then to expect over 200 million people to agree on a federally-based political and economic union?

But, this would be to dismiss the thrust towards a common set of goals in the Arab world. Borders are increasingly irrelevant in this new equation. The means of mass communication, interdependency, pan-regional media, ease of access through improved infrastructure, the identification with a cause rather than a country, all suggest that the political awakening in the region may be conducive to a completely different set of political and economic realities.

The nation state as we know it, as it was imposed on the region by colonial powers, is ripe for change. The unleashing of people power has now opened up new possibilities for mapping the Arab world's future. While protesters across the region have been waving their respective national flags, the cause for which they are fighting and risking their lives extends well beyond their immediate borders.
Reply
#38
THE SYKES PICOT AGREEMENT
http://theday.co.uk/briefing/the-sykes-picot-agreement


Dividing lines: The original map for the Sykes-Picot agreement. In 1916 Britain and France made secret plans to divide control of the Middle East after the first world war. How much is this agreement responsible for the region’s turmoil since then? The Sykes-Picot agreement is nearly one hundred years old. Why is it in the news?

‘Smashing Sykes-Picot’ tweeted the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) to its followers last month when it bulldozed a barrier on the Iraq-Syria border. The Sunni jihadist group has been fighting a spectacularly successful campaign against the Shia-led Iraqi government. And its well-run propaganda campaign on social media has used Sykes-Picot as a rallying cry to reignite the anger many Arabs feel about the agreement. After the first world war it was the blueprint used to carve up the defeated Ottoman empire into separate Arab states.

Now ISIS controls a great swathe of territory in both Syria and Iraq. In a video posted on YouTube called ‘The End of Sykes-Picot’ it announced that this was a new caliphate, an Islamic state run according to sharia law. They claim they are removing the artificial boundaries created by Britain and France.

So what was the agreement for in the first place?

It was negotiated between the French diplomat François Georges-Picot and his British counterpart Sir Mark Sykes in 1916. Its purpose was to ensure that, after the defeat of Germany’s ally, the Ottoman Empire, its territories should remain stable and under French and British control. This was a huge chunk of the Middle East, stretching from the Gulf to the Mediterranean and from the Red Sea to the Caspian Sea.

Why did they need to control the region?

There were many reasons. The British wanted to protect the overland route to India, the jewel in the British Empire’s crown and the French had interests in the Eastern Mediterranean. There was also oil in the region and the British Royal Navy which had switched its fuel from coal to oil before the war was keen to secure new supplies. The Catholic Church had been pushing for French control of the Syrian coast, home to many Maronite Catholics, and Britain was keen to put the French between them and the Russians to the north.

So a northern slice, running from the Mediterranean to the Tigris river, went to France; a southern slice, from Palestine to Iraq, was bagged by Britain. None of this was made public.

Why the secrecy?

It had to be secret because the British had already promised entirely different things to other people. Most notably, to the Arabs. In order to inspire all the Arabs across the region to rise up against their Ottoman overlords, the British had promised them self-determination – control of their own territories after the war.

So when did all this become known?

The Russians had been included in the Sykes-Picot negotiations – they were going to get Constantinople (modern-day Istanbul) after the war. However, the Russian Revolution intervened and the new Soviet government discovered a Sykes-Picot document in the files of the foreign ministry. They published it in 1917 to the considerable embarrassment of the British and French governments.

WORLD WAR ONE SOWED THE SEEDS OF TODAY'S MIDDLE EAST
Dr.Abdul Wahid

The present day misery of Gaza, Syria and Iraq began in that war. As most people know, 2014 is the centenary of the start of World War One. A few people in Britain have attempted rewriting history to present a justification for this war. They are those who generally supported the costly military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq in this present century. Others have embarked on a critical reflection about the horrors of a war that saw tens of millions killed and injured and question – looking at Gaza and Syria – whether the world has learnt any lessons at all.

It isn’t right to disrespect those who died in that war or their families’ recollections of individual acts of valor. But at the same time it isn’t wrong to disrespect the likes of Lloyd George, Kitchener, Curzon and Balfour who sent millions to die in a war that had little to do with ‘national security’; instead everything was to do with securing Britain’s position in Europe and interests across the world. The memories of the dead and injured are certainly not served by selective omission or rewriting of history.

So, it is worth reflecting on the legacies of this war that still resonates today. Namely that World War One shaped the chaos, oppression and conflict of the modern Middle East; and laid the seeds for the Zionist occupation of Palestine.

Sowing the seeds of misery – Sykes-Picot, Client-Regimes and the Abolition of the Caliphate

The modern Middle East is rife with wars, oppression and injustice. It is a series of nation states artificially constructed in the aftermath of World War One. They are ruled by client regimes, initially installed at that time, that serve themselves as well as a narrow elite and foreign interests – instead of serving the people of the region. These rulers are widely hated by the people they preside over. They use their armed forces for two main purposes. Firstly, to suppress their own populations – particularly when they see a flicker of political criticism or Islamic sentiments; and secondly to serve any Western military interests that are asked of them.

The most enduring of these client-regimes are the Kingdoms of Saudi Arabia and Jordan. Saudi Arabia was conceived in Britain’s foreign office around a century ago and has since then squandered huge amounts of material wealth. Its ruling family has enjoyed close ties with Britain and the United States ever since. Jordan is a similar family business, installed by the British after World War One. Britain installed members of the same family, widely seen as traitors to Islam and Muslims, to rule Iraq and briefly Syria – only to see their dynasty toppled in these places by coups and counter-coups variously sponsored by the Britain and the US.

It is worth reflecting that people living under the Ottoman state – even in its era of decline – enjoyed more stable and less oppressive lives than people living in the Middle East over the past century. For several centuries prior to that, under the Caliphate, the region was the home of a great civilization that presented a unique society in which communities of different racial and religious backgrounds lived peacefully and in harmony.

In his 2009 essay, ‘Islam and its Discontents’, Brenden Clifford of the Bevin Society wrote:

Islam, one of the major cultures of the world, has been without a state to uphold its position in the world-order for close on 90 years. The Islamic state was destroyed by Britain in the course of the war, which it declared on Germany in 1914. It has been argued that the destruction of the Islamic state was one of the purposes for which Britain declared war on Germany. And the destruction of the Islamic state appears to me to be the ultimate cause of the condition of the world which the USA and Britain call the War on Terror.

He reminds the reader that:

‘A little over a century ago the German Kaiser paid a state visit to the Ottoman Empire, met the Sultan, and declared that a strong Muslim state was a necessary part of any stable order in the world’.

German policy as set out by Count Von Moltke (later a Field Marshal of the German state) in his Essays, Speeches, And Memoirs, 1893 (Vol 1, p272) argued that it was possible to regenerate the Ottoman Empire as such from Islamic roots.

The British fear the impact of this in relation to its colonies – in particular in India – so pursued a policy of expansion of their Empire from India to Egypt. Indeed, once the Ottomans did enter the war, declaring it to be a Jihad, Kitchener had real fears this call would spread to India, Egypt and Sudan.

But at the outset of the war, the Ottoman policy was neutrality. It was in no financial or political position to engage in a war. However, Britain refused to accept this position and refused to accept any overtures of alliance with it – and set about provocation of the Ottoman state, particularly through allying with a hostile Russia.

By 5th November 1914, Britain declared war, in conjunction with Russia, by alleging an Ottoman attack on Russia in the Black Sea. Clifford writes scathingly that it was ‘an allegation made so obscurely and furtively that there is reason to suspect that it was comparable to Hitler’s allegation of a Polish attack on Germany in September 1939’!

Failing to see the expected rapid collapse of the Ottoman defences, Britain found allies in the form of Sharif Hussein – the ancestor of the Jordanian dynasty and Ibn Saud – the founder of modern day Saudi Arabia.

In 1916, under the Sykes Picot accord, the British and French governments agreed to a division of the spoils of the Middle East between the two states, drawing ‘a line in the sand’ between Acre and Kirkuk – the British to take what was south of the line, and the French what was north of it.

After much wheeling, dealing and double crossing between the two, the regions of Syria and Lebanon fell to France, whilst Transjordan, Iraq and the Hejaz went to Britain. The original agreements were meant to share Palestine. Britain managed to secure a mandate over the region, but was later forced by America and France to share the newly discovered oil revenues from Mosul shortly after the war.

The events of the war and the subsequent ‘peace conferences’ afterwards not only carved up the Ottoman state, it precipitated a collapse internally, ending with the abolition of the Caliphate in 1924.

The following 90 years have seen wars between these artificially constructed states; repressive regimes tyrannising their people; the material wealth of the region haemorrhaging away from the people who had a right over it; and various periods of occupation.

From pre-Balfour Declaration to the Zionist Occupation of Palestine

Before World War One, British imperial strategists took account of the implications of potential scenarios within the Middle East. Addressing the 1907 Imperial Conference in London, Britain’s Prime Minister Henry Campbell Bannerman expressed these fears and called for a commission to look at the question of how to prevent the fall of their empire. The report recommended:

1) To promote disintegration, division and separation in the region.

2) To establish artificial political entities that would be under the authority of the imperialist countries.

3) To fight any kind of unity – whether intellectual, religious or historical – and taking practical measures to divide the region’s inhabitants.

4) To achieve this, it was proposed that a “buffer state” be established in Palestine, populated by a strong, foreign presence which would be hostile to its neighbors and friendly to European countries and their interests.

Retrospectively, this would appear to have become British Imperial policy from this time – prior to World War One – for several decades thereafter.

Within this context, Arthur Balfour’s letter to Lord Rothschild in 1917, expressing Britain’s support for the creation of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, becomes easy to understand.

There has been much debate over the years as to what extent the British government of the time really meant this expression of support.

Writing many years later, Sir Anthony Nutting believed that Balfour and others were complicit with the Zionist agenda to evict the Palestinian Arabs from the region – fitting very much with the pre-war policy recommendation to Bannerman to establish the ‘buffer state…populated by a strong, foreign presence’.

But other historians like Jonathan Schneer have viewed the promise to the Zionists as one of a complex series of bargaining moves that sought to variously ‘play’ Zionist Jews and the leaders of the Arab revolt, all in order to maintain British control over Palestine.

Schneer recognizes overlapping interests in that the Zionist movement wanted the Ottomans out of Palestine, whilst the British government wanted the Ottomans out of the whole Middle East – whilst conceding as little influence as possible to France.

His argument is that part of this bargaining process was that Balfour’s promise would tantalize American Jewry into lobbying for the United States to enter the war on Britain’s side against the Ottomans. Yet simultaneously, Britain was secretly negotiating a peace with the Ottomans, ready to ditch Balfour’s promise, in case they did not get support from the United States.

So in effect, at some stage or other between 1916 and 1918, Britain had offered Palestine to different interested parties at different times. As well as offering it to the Zionist lobby there was a dialogue to hand it to the Ottomans had Britain decided to settle for peace prior to American entry in the war. There had been a verbal promise to Sharif Hussein that it would be part of his territory, as well as having agreed to share with the French under the original terms of the Sykes Picot agreement.

According to historian James Barr the trust between the ‘allies’ of Britain, France and the Zionists was so poor – because of the feeling they had been made too many broken promises – that by 1945 the French were financing Zionist terrorists to attack British troops in Palestine (whilst British soldiers were helping to liberate France from the Nazis).

However, the client Arab regimes accepted humiliation and broken promises with servitude – and showed no real interest in defending or liberating Palestine. From the very first until today they have been the first line of support and defence for ‘Israel’.

One prime example was illustrated in Chaim Weizmann’s diary, where it is recorded that St John Philby, a former British intelligence officer and advisor to Ibn Saud, made a proposal that Ibn Saud should be offered a financial incentive of £20,000,000 in return for his support for a Zionist state. It seems the only reason this didn’t happen was because Weizmann didn’t want to proceed.

Conclusion

So much of the politics of today’s Middle East can be understood from the political intrigues surrounding World War One.  It is imperative that Muslims know the history of that disastrous era and learn real lessons from it in order to understand the neo-colonial games that are played today – that continue to wreak havoc over large parts of the world.

Selected Bibliography

Barr, J – A Line in the Sand  – 2011
Schneer, J – The Balfour Declaration – 2010
Clifford, B – Islam and its Discontents – 2009
Al-Rashid, M – A History of Saudi Arabia –  2010
Nutting, Anthony – Balfour and Palestine – A legacy of deceit – 1975
Weizmann, Chaim – The Letters and Papers of Chaim Weizmann – Vol II
Rotberg, Robert  – Israeli and Palestinian Narratives of Conflict: History’s Double Helix


NEW SYKES PICOT AGREEMENT 

“THE ISRAELI DREAM”: THE CRIMINAL ROADMAP TOWARDS  “GREATER ISRAEL”?
Ethnic Cleansing Planned in the Middle East? History, Legality Ignored

The concept of a “Greater Israel” according to the founding father of Zionism Theodore Herzl, is a Jewish State stretching “’From the Brook of Egypt to the Euphrates.’  Rabbi Fischmann, of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, stated to the UN Special Committee on 9th July 1947 that:
The Promised Land extends from the River of Egypt up to the Euphrates, it includes parts of Syria and Lebanon’”, wrote Michel Chossudovsky. (1)

Thus “from the Nile to the Euphrates.” Herzl’s detailed thesis was written in 1904.

“Greater Israel”: The Zionist Plan for the Middle East
Quoted in the same article is Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya on The Yinon Plan (1982) “ … a continuation of Britain’s colonial design in the Middle East”:
“(The Yinon plan) is an Israeli strategic plan to ensure Israeli regional superiority. It insists and stipulates that Israel must reconfigure its geo-political environment through the balkanization of the surrounding Arab states into smaller and weaker states. “Israeli strategists viewed Iraq as their biggest strategic challenge from an Arab state. This is why Iraq was outlined as the centerpiece to the balkanization of the Middle East and the Arab World. In Iraq, on the basis of the concepts of the Yinon Plan, Israeli strategists have called for the division of Iraq into a Kurdish state and two Arab states, one for Shiite Muslims and the other for Sunni Muslims. The first step towards establishing this was a war between Iraq and Iran, which the Yinon Plan discusses.”

At the time Yinon wrote, the eight year, Western driven Iran-Iraq war was into its second year – with another six grinding years of loss, tragedy and heartbreak, valleys of widows, orphans, maimed, on both sides of their common border. The toll on life and health was compared to World War 1. Iraq of course, in an historic error, had virtually been fighting a proxy war for an American regime, even then obsessed with Islam, which, in Iran they had decided was the wrong sort of Islam. What the faith of a nation thousands of miles away had to do with Capitol Hill, remains a mystery. The day after that devastating war ended, the US replaced Iraq over the then USSR as the country which was the biggest threat to America. A devastated, war torn nation of, at the time, just under seventeen million people. (2)
Then came the dispute with Kuwait over alleged oil theft and Dinar destabilizing with the then US Ambassador April Glaspie personally giving Saddam Hussein the green light to invade should he choose. The subsequent nation paralyzing UN embargo followed, then the 2003 decimation and occupation – another orchestrated downward spiral – and tragedy and now open talk of what has been planned for decades, the break up of Iraq.


Greater Israel” requires the breaking up of the existing Arab states into small states.

“Mission accomplished” for both the US with its long planned redrawing of the Middle East and North Africa – and Israel, through whose friendship with the Iraqi Kurdish autocracy, was set to become pretty well a partner in an autonomous, independent Iraqi Kurdistan. Dream come true, from “the Nile to the Euphrates”, the final fruition of near seventy years of manipulation and aggression for domination of the entire region. The all is also the vision of the super hawk, dreamer of destruction of nations, Lt Colonel Ralph Peters since the early 1990s. Here is his 2006 version (3.) Peters is a man whose vision of eternal war is seemingly an eternal wet dream. Here, again, for anyone unaware of the Colonel, is a repeat of that dream (US Army War College Quarterly, Summer 1997):

“There will be no peace. At any given moment for the rest of our lifetimes, there will be multiple conflicts … around the globe. Violent conflict will dominate the headlines, but cultural and economic struggles will be steadier and ultimately more decisive. (US armed forces will keep) the world safe for our economy and open to our cultural assault. To those ends, we will do a fair amount of killing. “We have entered an age of constant conflict.”

Peters would make some of history’s most megalomaniacal expansionists look like gift offering peaceniks. His cartographic monument to arrogance: “The New Map of the Middle East Project”, of geographical restructure in far away places of which he gave less than a damn, was published in the Armed Forces Journal in June 2006.


It was surely no coincidence that on 1st May 2006 Joe Biden, long time Member of the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations – now US Vice President of course – and Leslie Gelb, President Emeritus of the Committee, joint authored a New York Times piece (4) urging the break up of Iraq, dividing the country on ethnic lines: “ … giving each ethno-religious group – Kurd, Sunni Arab and Shiite Arab …” their own ethnic and political ghettos. Ignorance on wide inter-marriage, inter-relations, until 2003, inter-communities at every level for millennia, mixed  neighbourhoods, shared celebrations, religious festivals, joys and heartaches, boggle the imagination. The deluded article is entitled: “Unity through autonomy in Iraq.” Think non-sequeta, think mixed marriages, does the husband live in a “Sunni” ghetto and the wife a “Shia” one, for example?


“The Kurdish, Sunni and Shiite regions would each be responsible for their own domestic laws, administration and internal security.” A “five point plan” of ghettoisation, destruction, delusion and wickedness, the US-Israeli game plan for Iraq, with the UK as ever, tagging along dreaming of days of empire when, with France, Iraq and the region’s borders were imperially tinkered with just short of a hundred years ago (5.)  Aside from the shaming arrogance and illegality of the plan, ignorance is total. Clearly there is no knowledge in the great annals of the US State Department, Department of Foreign Affairs or the CIA of Iraq’s religious and ethnic minorities, also co-existing for centuries: Christians, Mandaeans, Yazidis, Turkmen, Jews, Zoroastrians, Bahai, Kakai’s, Shabaks – and indeed those who regard themselves as non-religious.
By October 2007 Joe Biden had: “attempted to create a reality when an overwhelming majority of the US Senate voted for his non-binding Resolution to divide Iraq in to three parts … (with) the Washington Post reporting that the 75-23 Senate vote was a ‘significant milestone’ ” in the severing of Iraq in to three, wrote Tom Engelhardt (6.)
Engelhardt is seemingly the only eagle eye to have picked up that: “The (tripartite) structure is spelled out in Iraq’s Constitution, but Biden would initiate local and regional diplomatic efforts to hasten its evolution.” The Constitution, written under US imposed “Viceroy” Paul Bremer, is of course, entirely invalid, since it is illegal to re-write a Constitution under an occupation. “Only the Kurds, eager for an independent State, welcomed the plan.”   What, ponders Engelhardt, with forensic reality, would be the reaction if Iraq, or Iran for example: “passed a non-binding Resolution to divide the United States in to semi-autonomous bio-regions?”    He concludes that: “such acts would, of course, be considered not just outrageous and insulting, but quite mad.” In Iraq however: “at best it would put an American stamp of approval on the continuing ethnic cleansing of Iraq.”
However, the US Administration’s commitment is clear, Joe Biden, a self confessed Zionist, stated at the annual J Street Conference in September 2013: “If there were not an Israel, we would have to invent one to make sure our interests were preserved.” (7) Think oil, gas, strategic aims.  Biden assured his audience that: “America’s support for Israel is unshakable, period. Period, period.” (sic) He stressed a number of times the commitment that President Obama had to Israel. His own long and deep connections, he related, stretched back to a meeting with then Prime Minister Golda Meir when he was a freshman Senator and latterly his hours spent with Prime Minister Netanyahu. The latest meeting was in January this year when he travelled to Israel to pay his respects to the late Ariel Sharon and subsequently spent two hours alone in discussion with Netanyahu.

It is surely coincidence that subsequently the rhetoric for the division of Iraq accelerated. Israel has had “military, intelligence and business ties with the Kurds since the 1960s” viewing them as “a shared buffer between Arab adversaries.”   In June Netanyahu told Tel Aviv University’s INSS think tank: “We should … support the Kurdish aspiration for independence”, after “outlining what he described as the collapse of Iraq and other Middle East regions …”(8) Iraq’s internal affairs being none of Israel’s business obviously does not occur (apart from their outrageous historic aspirations for the region in spite of being the newly arriving regional guest.) The howls of Israeli fury when even basic human rights for Palestinians in their eroded and stolen lands are suggested for the last sixty six years, however, metaphorically deafen the world.

Of course Kurdistan has now laid claim to Kirkuk, with its vast oil deposits. The plan for the Northern Iraq-Haifa pipeline, an Israeli aspiration from the time of that country’s establishment can surely also not have been far from Netanyahu’s mind. An independent Kurdistan, which indeed it has enjoyed almost entirely within Iraq, since 1992 – and immediately betrayed the Iraqi State by inviting in Israel and the CIA – would herald the planned dismemberment of Iraq.  It is darkly ironic, that whether relating to the break up of their lands or ghettoisation of those of Iraqis and Palestinians, this mirrors the plan of Adolf Eichmann, the architect of ethnic cleansing, who, after the outbreak of Word War II “arranged for Jews to be concentrated into ghettos in major cities …” he also devised plans for Jewish “reservations.”
Additionally he was an architect of forcible expulsion, one of the charges brought against him after he was captured by Israel’s Mossad and Shin Bet in Argentina in 1960. He was tried in Israel, found guilty of war crimes and hanged in 1962. Ironically his pre-Nazi employment had been as an oil salesman (9.)  Can Israel and the “international community” really be planning to mirror Eichmann by repatriating and ethnic cleansing? Will nations never look in to history’s mirror?
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#39
TURKEY DURING AND AFTER THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION
http://www.crescent-online.net/2014/09/t...icles.html

Turkey has a new president in Recep Tayip Erdogan, hitherto Turkey’s prime minister. Our correspondent reports what he saw before, during and after the election in Turkey. After spending half a month during and after the latest presidential election in Turkey, a Crescent International correspondent shares his observations and analysis.

Given the brutal history of Western imposed secularism on Turkey when the Khilafah, even if reduced to a shell of its former venerable self, was abolished in 1924, Turkey under the Justice and Development Party (AKP) has achieved significant gains in reviving the Islamic spirit of the people. Those familiar with the Kemalist project of Western imperialist regimes that aimed to export this model to the entire Muslim world, cannot deny that Turks and the broader Islamic movement have maintained their Islamic identity largely intact despite enormous odds. The restored Muslim identity was clearly visible during our observation of last month’s presidential election in Turkey.

Even many anti-Erdogan Turks have admitted that until 2003 secularism was literally shoved down people’s throats. Seeing Islamic slogans and flags associated with the Egyptian Ikhwan al-Muslimeen and Palestine during presidential campaign rallies in Turkey is not a minor socio-political change for a country like Turkey. It represents the end of the era of unchallenged Western secular dominance.

Nevertheless, the overall impression gathered from observing the electoral campaign and Turkish society in general leads to one firm conclusion: the Kemalist project is on its deathbed and taking its last dying gasps. Western powers are attempting to replace Kemalism with “moderate Islam” through which the imperialist regimes and their local proxies hope to continue business in a literal and metaphorical sense. This is being done with the active collaboration of pseudo-Islamic groups like the Gulenists and by exploiting the AKP’s half-baked Muslim vision.

Pro and anti-Erdogan views

Speaking to Turks of various backgrounds from pro-Erdogan and anti-Erdogan camps it is clear that the AKP’s success in Turkey is based on the fact that it has managed to present a program and a vision that appeals to a broad segment of the population. The AKP voters include Salafis as well as leftists. Some Islamic-minded cadres view this phenomenon as Erdogan’s achievement while other Islamic activists consider this as a sign of Erdogan’s un-Islamic Machiavellian politics.    

Analyzing the electoral campaign carefully shows that Erdogan and his party managed to convince the majority of Turkish people that the battle is between preserving their religious identity and going back to secularism. This was not really the case but Erdogan’s use of ritualistic notions of Islam convinced the majority of Turks that if he loses, practicing Muslims will be subjected to repression once again. In order to deliver this message across to the generally conservative population of Turkey, AKP’s electoral machine focused on portraying Recep Tayyip Erdogan as the “Ataturk” of the religious/conservative camp.

This strategy worked because the religious segment of the Turkish population never viewed Mustafa Kemal as someone representing them. In Erdogan they found a persona who could be used as the antithesis to Mustafa Kemal and his imported ideology. Had the secular camp been more inclusive and tolerant of Islam in the 1980s and 1990s, the methodology Erdogan skillfully employed during the recent presidential election would not have worked so successfully.

Another crucial issue relating to Erdogan that critics point out is that he has adopted a rigid attitude in defending his personality at all costs. When discussing his domestic and foreign policy slips, Erdogan and his close circle of supporters are quick to blame others but never accept Erdogan’s responsibility. Anti-Erdogan critics within the Islamic movement and outside state that Erdogan implements this policy by making sure that anti-AKP and the old power structures remain weak, but active. This scheme allows Erdogan to blame them for his own leadership shortcomings.

Economic aspects

Election slogans and commercials of all candidates focused mainly on how they would improve the economic condition of the average person. Our observations revealed that typical pro-AKP voters in Turkey were primarily concerned with bread and butter issues. Erdogan and his party managed to improve the living condition of most people in rural Turkey. This improvement however, must be viewed in context. Up to the 1990s, the situation of Turkey’s rural population was so bad that anyone performing slightly better than the now obsolete and highly corrupt politicians of the past would be cheered by Turkish citizens.

Observing the economic situation in Istanbul, a city that is the center of economic activity and speaking to various businessmen and even average citizens, it is evident that Erdogan-ruled Turkey is a successful player of the Western economic game that allows the AKP and its leadership to promote itself as saviors of the nation. This aspect also creates unease among many activists of the Islamic movement in Turkey. They point to the fact that allowing the AKP government to participate in the Western economic game is a sign that the West derives strategic economic and political gains from the current Turkish leadership.

Foreign Policy

Erdogan has presented himself as the leader of Turkey who is restoring its Ottoman/Islamic grandeur. Thus, Turkish foreign policy was an important part of Erdogan’s electoral campaign. Nevertheless, caution and at times nervousness was also evident among pro-AKP activists and media outlets while discussing the “successes” of the AKP government vis-a-vis Syria and Palestine. Even though Erdogan’s electoral camp made sure that he is portrayed as champion of the Palestinian cause, they made sure that no in-depth comparison is made during the campaign between Erdogan’s militant approach on Syria and his “diplomatic” response to Zionist aggression in Gaza.

AKP supporters felt quite uncomfortable when asked what they thought of the fact that despite Erdogan’s soaring rhetoric, Israel’s Economic Ministry announced on July 4, 2014 that exports to Turkey had surpassed even 2013 record level, with the figure climbing nearly 25% to $949.2 million in the first four months of the year. Israel’s Economic Ministry also announced that imports from Turkey grew to $956 million, a 21% increase over the same period last year. According to the Zionist newspaper Haaretz, “the increase comes after two-way trade jumped 39% to a record $48.5 billion in 2013.” This factor was another major concern for many Islamic activists in Turkey that were critical of Erdogan and described him as apower hungry player who skillfully employs an Islamic cover to gain popular support.

In regards to the relations with the US and the EU, Ankara is unlikely to introduce any radical policy shifts. Turkey will remain in a strategic working relationship with Washington and Brussels, unless the two Western systems take aggressive steps to weaken Erdogan’s government. This will depend on the internal dynamics in Turkey that are unlikely to change for the next five to ten years.

The Kurds

A symbolic but impressive vote was garnered by Selahattin Demirtash, presidential candidate of the leftist political party. An ethnic Kurd, Demirtash who was the unofficial candidate of the Kurdish political party called Democratic Regions Party, better known in Turkey as BDP, obtained 9.76% of the vote.  Speaking to some anti-Erdogan and pro-Erdogan voters it became clear that Demirtash is widely admired even among people that did not vote for him.  If he were not an ethnic Kurd, Demirtash would certainly have gotten a much higher vote.

Evaluating the Kurdish factor within Turkish politics once again confirmed the view of Crescent International that the Kurdish question, after Israel, is the second strongest Western leverage in the Muslim East. The injustices suffered by the Kurdish people inflicted on them by Washington-supported regimes in the Muslim East, ironically turned them into the most reliable ally of the West. Due to Erdogan’s slow rapprochement policies toward them, the Kurds in Turkey will sooner or later become for Washington what they are for the US in Iraq, unless the Turkish government and society take radical steps to address the injustices faced by the Kurds in a speedy manner.

Sectarianism

Aiming to position Turkey as the leader of Sunni Muslims, Erdogan has clearly chosen to use the sectarian card. For many Turks that Crescent International spoke to, Erdogan’s numerous sectarian statements have now become his political trademark. Having travelled on numerous occasions to Turkey, this author witnessed for the first time a sectarian driven altercation in a masjid, initiated by a Syrian refugee. Sectarianism was never an important issue in Turkish society, but it is slowly becoming one and the AKP is facilitating it for internal and external purposes.

Through sectarianism the AKP aims to build a solid constituency that will turn a blind eye to its mismanagement and mistakes regardless of their severity. This strategy is definitely working as the incident with the leaked Erdogan tapes has shown. The pro-AKP constituency dismissed the corruption tapes as fake and as the government itself gave no credibility to some independent IT experts (like Joshua Marpet, a US-based cyber analyst who has testified in court on the validity of computer evidence in other Turkish criminal cases) who alleged that the tapes are real. To gain this reaction from its constituency Erdogan employed many tactics, one of which was sectarianism.

Overall impressions

Lengthy discussions held with average citizens in Turkey create the impression of a state with vast potential but at the same time one that is vulnerable. There are several key issues over which the Turkish society is divided that can and will be exploited by external powers. The ingredients for turning Turkey into another Syria-type scenario are there unless Erdogan and his political party conduct themselves in a more principled manner for their strength today could easily be turned into their weakness in the future.
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#40
WORLD WAR ONE SOWED THE SEEDS OF TODAYS MIDDLE EAST
http://www.hizb.org.uk/in-depth/world-wa...iddle-east

The present day misery of Gaza, Syria and Iraq began in that war

As most people know, 2014 is the centenary of the start of World War One. A few people in Britain have attempted rewriting history to present a justification for this war. They are those who generally supported the costly military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq in this present century. Others have embarked on a critical reflection about the horrors of a war that saw tens of millions killed and injured and question – looking at Gaza and Syria – whether the world has learnt any lessons at all.

It isn’t right to disrespect those who died in that war or their families’ recollections of individual acts of valor. But at the same time it isn’t wrong to disrespect the likes of Lloyd George, Kitchener, Curzon and Balfour who sent millions to die in a war that had little to do with ‘national security’; instead everything was to do with securing Britain’s position in Europe and interests across the world. The memories of the dead and injured are certainly not served by selective omission or rewriting of history.

So, it is worth reflecting on the legacies of this war that still resonates today. Namely that World War One shaped the chaos, oppression and conflict of the modern Middle East; and laid the seeds for the Zionist occupation of Palestine.

Sowing the seeds of misery – Sykes-Picot, Client-Regimes and the Abolition of the Caliphate

The modern Middle East is rife with wars, oppression and injustice. It is a series of nation states artificially constructed in the aftermath of World War One. They are ruled by client regimes, initially installed at that time, that serve themselves as well as a narrow elite and foreign interests – instead of serving the people of the region. These rulers are widely hated by the people they preside over. They use their armed forces for two main purposes. Firstly, to suppress their own populations – particularly when they see a flicker of political criticism or Islamic sentiments; and secondly to serve any Western military interests that are asked of them.

The most enduring of these client-regimes are the Kingdoms of Saudi Arabia and Jordan. Saudi Arabia was conceived in Britain’s foreign office around a century ago and has since then squandered huge amounts of material wealth. Its ruling family has enjoyed close ties with Britain and the United States ever since. Jordan is a similar family business, installed by the British after World War One. Britain installed members of the same family, widely seen as traitors to Islam and Muslims, to rule Iraq and briefly Syria – only to see their dynasty toppled in these places by coups and counter-coups variously sponsored by the Britain and the US.

It is worth reflecting that people living under the Ottoman state – even in its era of decline – enjoyed more stable and less oppressive lives than people living in the Middle East over the past century. For several centuries prior to that, under the Caliphate, the region was the home of a great civilization that presented a unique society in which communities of different racial and religious backgrounds lived peacefully and in harmony.

In his 2009 essay, ‘Islam and its Discontents’, Brenden Clifford of the Bevin Society wrote:

Islam, one of the major cultures of the world, has been without a state to uphold its position in the world-order for close on 90 years. The Islamic state was destroyed by Britain in the course of the war, which it declared on Germany in 1914. It has been argued that the destruction of the Islamic state was one of the purposes for which Britain declared war on Germany. And the destruction of the Islamic state appears to me to be the ultimate cause of the condition of the world which the USA and Britain call the War on Terror.

He reminds the reader that:

‘A little over a century ago the German Kaiser paid a state visit to the Ottoman Empire, met the Sultan, and declared that a strong Muslim state was a necessary part of any stable order in the world’.

German policy as set out by Count Von Moltke (later a Field Marshal of the German state) in his Essays, Speeches, And Memoirs, 1893 (Vol 1, p272) argued that it was possible to regenerate the Ottoman Empire as such from Islamic roots.

The British fear the impact of this in relation to its colonies – in particular in India – so pursued a policy of expansion of their Empire from India to Egypt. Indeed, once the Ottomans did enter the war, declaring it to be a Jihad, Kitchener had real fears this call would spread to India, Egypt and Sudan.

But at the outset of the war, the Ottoman policy was neutrality. It was in no financial or political position to engage in a war. However, Britain refused to accept this position and refused to accept any overtures of alliance with it – and set about provocation of the Ottoman state, particularly through allying with a hostile Russia.

By 5th November 1914, Britain declared war, in conjunction with Russia, by alleging an Ottoman attack on Russia in the Black Sea. Clifford writes scathingly that it was ‘an allegation made so obscurely and furtively that there is reason to suspect that it was comparable to Hitler’s allegation of a Polish attack on Germany in September 1939’!

Failing to see the expected rapid collapse of the Ottoman defences, Britain found allies in the form of Sharif Hussein – the ancestor of the Jordanian dynasty and Ibn Saud – the founder of modern day Saudi Arabia.

In 1916, under the Sykes Picot accord, the British and French governments agreed to a division of the spoils of the Middle East between the two states, drawing ‘a line in the sand’ between Acre and Kirkuk – the British to take what was south of the line, and the French what was north of it.

After much wheeling, dealing and double crossing between the two, the regions of Syria and Lebanon fell to France, whilst Transjordan, Iraq and the Hejaz went to Britain. The original agreements were meant to share Palestine. Britain managed to secure a mandate over the region, but was later forced by America and France to share the newly discovered oil revenues from Mosul shortly after the war.

The events of the war and the subsequent ‘peace conferences’ afterwards not only carved up the Ottoman state, it precipitated a collapse internally, ending with the abolition of the Caliphate in 1924.

The following 90 years have seen wars between these artificially constructed states; repressive regimes tyrannising their people; the material wealth of the region haemorrhaging away from the people who had a right over it; and various periods of occupation.

From pre-Balfour Declaration to the Zionist Occupation of Palestine

Before World War One, British imperial strategists took account of the implications of potential scenarios within the Middle East. Addressing the 1907 Imperial Conference in London, Britain’s Prime Minister Henry Campbell Bannerman expressed these fears and called for a commission to look at the question of how to prevent the fall of their empire. The report recommended:

1) To promote disintegration, division and separation in the region.

2) To establish artificial political entities that would be under the authority of the imperialist countries.

3) To fight any kind of unity – whether intellectual, religious or historical – and taking practical measures to divide the region’s inhabitants.

4) To achieve this, it was proposed that a “buffer state” be established in Palestine, populated by a strong, foreign presence which would be hostile to its neighbors and friendly to European countries and their interests.

Retrospectively, this would appear to have become British Imperial policy from this time – prior to World War One – for several decades thereafter.

Within this context, Arthur Balfour’s letter to Lord Rothschild in 1917, expressing Britain’s support for the creation of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, becomes easy to understand.

There has been much debate over the years as to what extent the British government of the time really meant this expression of support.

Writing many years later, Sir Anthony Nutting believed that Balfour and others were complicit with the Zionist agenda to evict the Palestinian Arabs from the region – fitting very much with the pre-war policy recommendation to Bannerman to establish the ‘buffer state…populated by a strong, foreign presence’.

But other historians like Jonathan Schneer have viewed the promise to the Zionists as one of a complex series of bargaining moves that sought to variously ‘play’ Zionist Jews and the leaders of the Arab revolt, all in order to maintain British control over Palestine.

Schneer recognizes overlapping interests in that the Zionist movement wanted the Ottomans out of Palestine, whilst the British government wanted the Ottomans out of the whole Middle East – whilst conceding as little influence as possible to France.

His argument is that part of this bargaining process was that Balfour’s promise would tantalize American Jewry into lobbying for the United States to enter the war on Britain’s side against the Ottomans. Yet simultaneously, Britain was secretly negotiating a peace with the Ottomans, ready to ditch Balfour’s promise, in case they did not get support from the United States.

So in effect, at some stage or other between 1916 and 1918, Britain had offered Palestine to different interested parties at different times. As well as offering it to the Zionist lobby there was a dialogue to hand it to the Ottomans had Britain decided to settle for peace prior to American entry in the war. There had been a verbal promise to Sharif Hussein that it would be part of his territory, as well as having agreed to share with the French under the original terms of the Sykes Picot agreement.

According to historian James Barr the trust between the ‘allies’ of Britain, France and the Zionists was so poor – because of the feeling they had been made too many broken promises – that by 1945 the French were financing Zionist terrorists to attack British troops in Palestine (whilst British soldiers were helping to liberate France from the Nazis).

However, the client Arab regimes accepted humiliation and broken promises with servitude – and showed no real interest in defending or liberating Palestine. From the very first until today they have been the first line of support and defence for ‘Israel’.

One prime example was illustrated in Chaim Weizmann’s diary, where it is recorded that St John Philby, a former British intelligence officer and advisor to Ibn Saud, made a proposal that Ibn Saud should be offered a financial incentive of £20,000,000 in return for his support for a Zionist state. It seems the only reason this didn’t happen was because Weizmann didn’t want to proceed.

Conclusion

So much of the politics of today’s Middle East can be understood from the political intrigues surrounding World War One.

It is imperative that Muslims know the history of that disastrous era and learn real lessons from it in order to understand the neo-colonial games that are played today – that continue to wreak havoc over large parts of the world.

Selected Bibliography

Barr, J – A Line in the Sand  – 2011
Schneer, J – The Balfour Declaration – 2010
Clifford, B – Islam and its Discontents – 2009
Al-Rashid, M – A History of Saudi Arabia –  2010
Nutting, Anthony – Balfour and Palestine – A legacy of deceit – 1975
Weizmann, Chaim – The Letters and Papers of Chaim Weizmann – Vol II
Rotberg, Robert  – Israeli and Palestinian Narratives of Conflict: History’s Double Helix
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