The Hamas charter, widely cited by defenders of the Israeli siege on Gaza, contains some passages that hard to reconcile for many allied with Palestinian liberation. Specifically, the charter states:
“The Prophet, Allah bless him and grant him salvation, has said: ‘The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Moslems, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.’”
According to Kash Nikazmrad of Students for Justice in Palestine, one should view passages from the Hamas charter like the one above as hyperbolic political rhetoric meant to stoke a political base, and not, he says, as something to be taken literally. The focus, he says should be on the genocidal conditions imposed by Isreal that give birth to the resistance.
“The UN recognizes Genocide as anything deterring the progression of human life,” says Nikazmrad, “and that is what (Israel) does in Gaza. They don’t allow them to fish. Settlers come and cut down Olive trees and put concrete on the olive trees. And (Israel) is all outside, and they blame Palestinians for building tunnels to try to bring medical supplies in. What do you think will happen when you build a prison (Gaza) and you prevent people from having any kind of right to life? They are going to try and build tunnels and they are going to try and resist the occupation that is there.”
“We are a diverse group of people who have come together against the Israeli occupation and against the massacre. However,” says Kash Nikazmrad, an organizer with Students for Justice in Palestine, “every massacre, every occupation, every act of colonialism always has a mechanism and a supporter. The supporter in this situation has been America.”
Judging by the (in)action of Congress, it is hard to dispute Nikazmrad’s claims. When it comes to Israel and Gaza, there is unanimous agreement. As Philip Weiss of Mondoweiss sums up:
The Senate (July 17) unanimously passed a resolution backed by the Israel lobby group AIPAC expressing support for Israel’s attack on Gaza and saying not a word about Palestinian deaths.
The Hill says that the resolution passed ‘through a unanimous consent agreement.’
‘The United States Senate is in Israel’s camp,’ [South Carolina Senator Lindsey] Graham said on the Senate floor Thursday.
The resolution describes Palestinian attacks on Israel as ‘unprovoked’ and says not a word about Palestinian deaths, but speaks of the survival of Israel in urging the dissolution of the unified Palestinian government:
Reaffirms the United States’ support for Israel’s right to defend its citizens and ensure the survival of the State of Israel…
Calls on Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to dissolve the unity governing arrangement with Hamas and condemn the attacks on Israel.
‘I strongly condemn the heinous attacks being perpetrated by Hamas and other terrorist groups against Israel. No country should have to live under a constant threat of aggression against its people, and I stand shoulder to shoulder with Israel as it defends itself against this shocking violence. My heart goes out to the citizens of Israel and the countless civilians in Gaza caught in this Hamas-initiated violence.’
MJ Rosenberg says it’s all about pro-Israel money, and that Senators have a double standard for US military actions and Israeli ones:
Note that even progressive saints Elizabeth Warren, Al Franken, Sherrod Brown, and Bernie Sanders found nothing in this to object to. For the record, no U.S. military adventure has had the support of all hundred senators in decades. But, hey, this is Israel. And, more important, this is AIPAC. And cash.
Kash Nikazmrad of Students for Justice in Palestine, joins Dennis on Acronym TV to discuss the growing global resistance to the massacre in Gaza.
Bill Maher should be praised for how efficiently he elucidated exactly what the Israel propaganda machine, with full support and cooperation of the United States government, would have us believe when he took to twitter and remarked: “Dealing w/ Hamas is like dealing w/ a crazy woman who’s trying to kill u – u can only hold her wrists so long before you have to slap her.”
Dealing w/ Hamas is like dealing w/ a crazy woman who's trying to kill u – u can only hold her wrists so long before you have to slap her
In the same spirit of violating the rules of proportionality Israel violates in waging an asymmetrical war on Palestinians, I’ll counter Bill Maher’s tweet with an open letter.
Like most men who find themselves in the admittedly unenviable position of having a woman trying to kill you I’ll wager that the amount of time you have spent searching your soul for her homicidal motive was not nearly as long as the time you spent cuddling her after you date raped her.
Now, I know what you are thinking Bill – rape is a serious accusation. After all, Hamas was dressed like Jodie Foster in The Accused and she let you pick up the tab at dinner and she was grinding you on the dance floor in between throwing back a half dozen martinis. You have witness who will testify to this in a court of law no less and so clearly, I mean, whose kidding who, right Billy boy: she wanted it. She all but asked for it.
Who could blame you, drunk as you were, for mistaking all the punching and kicking and biting Hamas was doing to you during foreplay as hitting the jackpot in finding such a kinky Saturday night sex partner. I mean, if you didn’t know better, filled as you were with the confidence that this girl Hamas was lucky to even be with you, you might think she were trying to defend herself.
Could that be possible?
Nah, you’ll tone down some of the rougher stuff and have a great story top tell around the Real Time water cooler, right? You may have had some doubts when the sound she made when you penetrated her, or um, occupied her as it were, sounded much more like the moans of a desperately resigned type than the mutual pleasure giving type, but you easily suppressed those thoughts when she passed out, you finished you business and left, top down on the convertible, cruising through the Hollywood Hills completely satisfied with yourself.
So I can imagine your shock Bill, when this crazy Hamas bitch, after she was released from the hospital, started telling people you raped her. I wonder if you can you imagine her shock Bill, when every authority she reported you to told her that- hmm, shoot girl- if the great Bill Maher takes you dancing and buys you drinks and picks up the tab at that trendy and exclusive new Asian fusion place where you can’t even get on the list if you are not a Tosh.O or Kobe Bryant or President Obama (I mean it is that exclusive) than you better be prepared to put out, because, well you owe him?
With no help from the legal authorities, Hamas tried to shame your good name in the press. And you can’t have that, right Bill? I mean, without a good name, what currency can men tread in? And so the world not only stood by, they supported you, as you rained down hellfire missiles provided to you as the only export of a fading global Imperial empire down on that Hamas bitch and everyone member of her family and zip code.
But like the ending to a bad zombie flick, here comes Hamas again, somehow stumbling towards you, shaking off the dust from the rubble and the blood splatter from her now deceased family members from her eyes and her sights are set right on you Bill. She looks crazy. And she wants to kill you. But you are stronger than her Bill, and so you hold her wrists until- in what is surely a compassionate gesture intended to shake Hamas to her senses until she sees and accepts her place in the world, you have to slap her. Not that you want to slap her, we know that Bill.
There are many crimes committed in the pursuit of, or as an accessory to, the crimes of US Foreign Policy. I’m not exactly sure where to rank the operation of Guantanamo Bay on that list, but consider these numbers, compiled by the Center for Constitutional Rights:
779 men and boys have been imprisoned at Guantánamo since January 2002.
100% of them are Muslim.
Of the 149 who remain there, 78 have been cleared for release for years but are still imprisoned.
President Obama’s Task Force has designated 38 men for indefinite detention without charge or trial.
The longer the illegal prison remains open, the more accepting of its existence American citizens seem to be, at least according to Gallup poll conducted in the days after the release of Sgt. Bergdahl in exchange for 5 prisoners who were not on that list cleared for release. That poll revealed that 66% of Americans said the U.S. should not “close this prison and move some of the prisoners to U.S. prisons.” That is up from the 53% of Americans who said the same thing in July of 2007. Today, again, according to that latest Gallup poll, just 29% of Americans want the facility closed and the prisoners either released or transported to the U.S.
About the guest:
Jason Leopold is an investigative reporter covering Guantanamo, counterterrorism, national security, human rights, open government, and civil liberties. He’s been called a “FOIA Terrorist” by federal employees for his aggressive use of the Freedom of Information Act, which includes successfully suing the FBI to force changes to Bureau FOIA practices.
When Germany and Argentina square off in the Word Cup Final, the whole world will be watching the culmination of what may be the most exciting FIFA World Cup Tournament ever. What most people are unaware of, however, is the brutal conditions that FIFA creates to pull off the games.
Eleanor Goldfield is a creative activist and writer based in Los Angeles. She works with organizations to create digital content as well as live events to combine pop culture and politics – art killing apathy; her political hard rock band Rooftop Revolutionaries being a primary example of this. As a writer, she writes for several political publications on our corporatocratic government and all the issues stemming from that.
The oil rich country of Iraq is facing a possible collapse.
Sunni militants, largely shut out of the new government installed by the U.S. after our illegally invasion and occupation are overtaking large parts of Iraq in a quickly developing story. U.S. foreign policy seems to lack the imagination to do anything but intervene militarily. How that intervention takes shape, whether it be in aid, advising, air strikes, boots on the ground, or the kind of shock and awe only a Nobel peace prize winning Commander in chief can deliver remains to be seen.
Joining Dennis on Acronym TV this week to discuss the situation in Iraq are Lila Garrett and Dr. Dennis Loo.
Lila Garret is a two time Emmy winner for her work in TV comedy as a writer/producer. For her progressive political activism, in 1991 she was the recipient of Senator Barbara Boxer’s WOMEN MAKING HISTORY AWARD. . In 2004 she was So. Cal. Chair of the Kucinich for President campaign. For the last 9 years she has hosted the radio political talk show, “Connect the Dots” heard every Monday morning at 7 on Pacifica’s KPFK in Los Angeles and on line atKPFK.org.
Dr. Dennis Loo is a Professor of Sociology at Cal Poly Pomona. He has won national awards for his scholarship, his journalism, and his activism. Loo is the author of Globalization and the Demolition of Society and co-editor/author of Impeach the President: the Case Against Bush and Cheney. He writes regularly for his website DennisLoo.com and sits on the National Steering Committee of the World Can’t Wait.
ISIS in Iraq, Barack Obama as a War President, The U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Litigating the past and planning for the future, The sitcom All in the Family (and what would Meathead and Archie do now?), and Satire as a tool for the peace movement Read the rest of this entry →
Joining Dennis on the show today to make sense of all this is Mnar Muhawesh. She is the founder, CEO and editor in chief of Mint Press News, and also a regular speaker on responsible journalism, sexism, neoconservativism within the media and journalism start-ups.
As the world watches Iraq quickly descending into a failed state status under the brutal onslaught from fighters in the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, pundits, representatives form congress and no doubt members of Barack Obama’s inner circle are wondering if it is not time to put together another coalition of the willing and re-engage the US Military in Iraq.
Before you dust off your yellow ribbons to tie round your oak tree’s though, remember: in 2003 The United States invaded Iraq after lying to the world and the American people saying that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and was connected to Al Qaeda — and therefore connected to the 9/11 attacks.
Iraq is collapsing. The Middle Eastern nation, where nearly 4,500 American lives were lost and nearly one billion dollars were spent from 2003-2011 to oust a dictator and rebuild a nation, is approaching chaos, perhaps even ‘failed state’ status.
The deterioration in Syria and the invasion and spread of extremism in northern and western Iraq is putting the ‘cradle of civilization’ under the control of theMiddle East’s most militant, ruthless and vile Islamic extremists.
They proffer no future for the region’s inhabitants other than oppression under the guise of rigid adherence to Sharia law.
Extremist fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) — expelled from Al Qaida because of its extreme militancy — have seized Iraq’s second largest city of Mosul and took possession of Ninewah Province, after taking Fallujah and Ramadi just west of Baghdad late last year. They quickly moved south to Samarra and Tikrit, capturing both cities with little government resistance. They also seized Iraq’s largest oil refinery in Baiji. The militants have made no secret of their objective: Baghdad.
Christina Tobin, the founder and chair of Free and Equal, sits down with Dennis to discuss our Democracy in crisis and the United We Stand Festival Tour. The motto of Free and Equal is More Voices, More Choices.
We believe that freedom is enhanced when voters are presented with all the sides to an issue and have a chance to fairly evaluate all the candidates running in an election. However, the incumbent political parties like to define the parameters of the debate by presenting only two choices, or two versions of the same idea.
With the privately run Commission on Presidential Debates, Republicans and Democrats go to great lengths to exclude candidates not belonging to their own parties by setting restrictive qualifications to participate in the debates sponsored by their interest groups and then refusing to show up at debates where all candidates are invited.
We believe that all ballot-qualified candidates should have the opportunity to participate in debates. The Free & Equal hosted 2008 and 2012 Presidential Debates were the only debates featuring independent and third party candidates and to be broadcast live to a nationwide audience. -www.freeandequal.org
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