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When President George W. Bush launched his global war on terror, which was quickly adopted by the media through its acronym GWOT, the American public rallied around a new Crusade to rid the world of Islamic terrorism even as the president kept reminding anyone who would listen that Islam is a religion of peace. Initially there were few dissidents brave enough to challenge Washington’s burning desire to obtain revenge on the perpetrators of 9/11, but critics eventually did emerge, noting that a war on terror was itself a contradiction in terms as terror is a tactic, not an enemy. As the focus shifted to Iraq, some noted that fighting transnational terrorists would inevitably involve American soldiers in locally inspired quarrels in faraway lands that in no way threatened the United States. The concurrent Bush Doctrine, which stated that the US would feel free to intervene military in any country or against any group that might be perceived as potentially threatening, reinforced the notion held by some critics that Washington was entering into an open ended conflict that would continue forever and from which there could not possibly be any way out.

The fundamental problem with the war on terror beyond its name is that it has in practice conflated a political objective with a national security program. It de facto identifies terrorism as a “problem” that the rest of us have in dealing with the Islamic world and, more broadly speaking, the Muslim religion. The political objective being sustained by the GWOT is to create a consensus that there is something fundamentally wrong with Islam as both the religion and culture eschew liberal democracy and have instead become breeding grounds for terrorism. That is largely a construct developed by Israel and its friends in the media and academia, including most notably Princeton Professor Bernard Lewis, and it has been used to sustain what has evolved into an unending war against the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims.

Empty headed pundits like Sarah Palin codeword the perception when she refers sarcastically to letting “let Allah sort it out” and it even surfaces in the comments made by some politicians who “get it” about the perils of interventionism including Senator Rand Paul, who continually cites those who “are burning our flag and shouting death to America” as part of a “war against Christianity.” It is a thinly veiled indictment of Muslims which conveniently generates an enemy “Other” while effectively exonerating Israel and the United States from any blame for what has deformed the politics of the Middle East.

The truth is that the reality of terrorism is much more complex than either former President Bush or current President Barack Obama can comfortably admit. Terrorism, often instigated by soldiers rather than individuals, has been around since the Assyrians began chopping off heads and Tamurlane built a mountain of skulls after his sack of Baghdad. In its state sponsored form it also figured in Sherman’s march through Georgia, Sheridan’s devastation of the Shenandoah Valley, and America’s pacification of the Philippines. In the modern context, it is generally seen as the actions undertaken by a non-state player to intimidate a local population and delegitimize governments so they will be susceptible to being overthrown. State sponsors of terror, as defined by the US State Department, are limited to those regimes that support those non-state players. This definition is convenient because it enables one to largely ignore the covert terrorism carried out by some governments, including the US and Israel, almost certainly because no retired high government official wants to be arrested by agents of the International Criminal Court when relaxing on the French Riviera.

As the most recent manifestations of terrorism are actually intimately connected to failed policies by the United States, of which the blowback that created al-Qaeda out of the war against the Soviets in Afghanistan is only one example, American officials find a comfort zone in blaming someone else for the surge in transnational violence. In the public mind the particular cruelty often exhibited by terrorists has been reduced to an abstraction, as a product of radical Islam. And in the process they forget that terrorism itself is not inextricably linked to any particular ethnic group or nation.

As the University of Chicago’s Professor Robert Pape has demonstrated, suicide bombing, a subset of terrorism, is almost always linked to an occupation of one country by another or by one group that is being repressed by another. Indeed, going back twenty years the largest number of suicide bombers were Hindus in Sri Lanka, not Muslims in the Middle East. Going back a bit further, in the 1970s terrorism was a largely European phenomenon, with groups like Baader Meinhoff and the Red Armies, drawn largely from politically left of center European middle class students, confounding Marxists who were sitting around waiting for the workers to rise up. Palestinian terrorism, which also took root at the same time, was not in any way intrinsic to Islam as it developed as a reaction to the Israeli occupation.

There is considerable chatter about the root causes of terrorism, whether that be poverty, political disenfranchisement, or the desire to dominate a particular region or state, as if the phenomenon were some kind of plant that can be ripped from the ground. The discussion only further confuses what should be a matter of cold blooded calculation regarding the damage that terrorists actually inflict versus the cost of maintaining a terror focused national security posture which is rapidly morphing into a national security state.

Osama bin Laden once stated his intention to use the terrorism threat to bankrupt the United States and the evidence is that he may have succeeded beyond his wildest dreams. The cost of Homeland Security, to include the portion of defense and security budgets that are dedicated to counter-terrorism, is immense possibly approaching as much as one trillion dollars a year if state and local initiatives are included in the tally. Against that, only seventeen Americans were killed in terrorist incidents in 2011, most of which took place in war zones to include Afghanistan.

Every undeserved death is surely a tragedy, but it has been noted that an American is more likely to die from falling furniture in his own home than as a victim of terrorist violence. The overwhelming majority of victims of terrorism are Muslims, more than 80% of the total. Worldwide, as most of those described as terrorists have strictly local agendas there may not be more than a couple of hundred or so hardcore militants who have the means, ability and motivation to actually threaten the United States or Americans overseas and most of them are on the run from the security services in the countries where they shelter. And it is also true that they would not want to be coming over here at all but for the fact that we are over there, where they live, and have been interfering in their politics since 9/11.

Has the terrorism threat been both badly defined and overstated? It certainly has, to the benefit of defense contractors, senior government officials and politicians who have deliberately avoided the establishment of a sane national security policy while successfully selling the faux terrorist agenda, frequently for their own personal gain.

 
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Terrorism 
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  1. NB says: • Website

    Giraldi makes several dubious claims:
    1. Giraldi claims that the notion that Islam has become a breeding ground for terrorism is “largely a construct developed by Israel and its friends in the media and academia, including most notably Princeton Professor Bernard Lewis.” The only source Giraldi cites for his assertion is the wiki entry on Bernard Lewis, and the only reference to terrorism I can find on that wiki page is regarding a book Lewis published in 2008, so Giraldi provides no evidence to support his claim. In fact, the the wiki entry for “War on Terror” has scarcely a mention of Israel, and in fact, it was the Reagan administration that first used the term “war on terrorism.”

    Giraldi has a history of making dubious claims about Israel, most notably his recent piece “Quitting over Syria,” in which he insinuates that the notion that Assad ordered a chemical weapons attack against his own people is based on fabricated Israeli intelligence, falsely claiming that “whether the victims of the attack suffered symptoms of Sarin was also disputed.”

    2. Giraldi states: “Palestinian terrorism, which also took root at the same time [1970s], was not in any way intrinsic to Islam as it developed as a reaction to the Israeli occupation.” Palestinian terrorism/violence long predated the 1970s and the Israeli occupation: 1834 Safed pogrom, 1921 Jaffa riots, 1929 Hebron massacre, title=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1938_Tiberias_massacre” href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1938_Tiberias_massacre”>1938 Tiberias massacre, etc. In addition, the PLO was founded in 1964 – before Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.
    (To be clear, I am not arguing that terrorism is intrinsic to Islam, nor am I denying the existence of Jewish terrorism.)

    3. Giraldi states: “an American is more likely to die from falling furniture in his own home than as a victim of terrorist violence.” This argument is addressed here:
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-06-12/what-conor-friedersdorf-misunderstands-about-terrorism.html

  2. “Worldwide, as most of those described as terrorists have strictly local agendas there may not be more than a couple of hundred or so hardcore militants who have the means, ability and motivation to actually threaten the United States or Americans overseas and most of them are on the run from the security services in the countries where they shelter.”

    And for this the NSA has to collect the location data of every cell phone on the planet? Geesh.

    Again, Phil Giraldi puts things into perspective. But as long as “defense contractors, senior government officials and politicians” benefit, nothing will change. Sadly.

  3. Professor Lewis deserves comment. For many years he provided a useful and illuminating portal into Islamic History and life. He was anything but a pugnacious anti-Islamic firebrand. His writing on the Ismaili’s was quite sympathetic and useful.

    It appears to me that after 9/11, and with advancing age, his previous objectivity left him. His work was also limited by his lack of access to many sources due to his Jewishness. I believe that he had to rely on mainly Turkish sources.

    Clearly, the terror tactics we face now comes mainly from the Muslim world. But Mr. Giraldi is quite right that we must not be gulled into picking a fight with that world at large. We need to be on hard against those who want to play the old game of, “Let’s you and him fight.”

  4. Wars that are constructed around euphemistic opponents are intrinsically open-ended. One can no more achieve closure by treaty against a tactic that is unfortunately universal on all sides – the evil of terrorism – than in The War on (some) Drugs – when does that end, when pharmaceutical corporations are out of business and doctors can no longer write scripts? A cynic might well think that the open-endedness is intentional, since it pre-emtively serves to prevent any interruption to military-industrial revenue streams, so vulnerable to outbreaks of peace. It is convenient to those who seek to minimize democratic accountability of the use of military power in foreign policy, since the open-ended nature means that once hostilities are unleashed, they need never end and become part of a seamless exercise based on an initial decision unlimited in scope.

  5. Ja, when will GWOT be accepted as the red flag for the Military-Global Commercial Espionage ploy that it is. When will America truly be seen for the Boneheaded Nation of Sycophants hiding their incompetence behind a dot guv paycheck, animating this clay-foot colossus with a backbone made of yellow-striped-backed “universities” clamoring for a grant to promote their sideways “science.”
    USA sucks at everything it does. There is no Intelligentsia here. This would be embarrassing to this “class,” but for the fact that Stupid does not know its stupid. That is the nature of it – arrogance is blind.
    The End.

  6. BMG says:

    I have often wondered why during the French revolution, the Russian revolution, the so called Syrian revolution, Churches have been looted and destroyed, while Synagogues have remained largely unscathed. In Russia while hundreds of thousands of Priests and members of their families were slaughtered and the Churches destroyed and closed; the Moscow Synagogue has never closed its doors. In Lebanon, the terrorist targets were Christians and Americans; Churches, the marine barracks, the American and French Embassies, etc. The pattern is no different in Libya, Iraq, Egypt, Syria, Iran, and so forth. It has been established that many of the factions fighting in Lebanon were under Israeli control as are the Jihadists. The important question is, What is the ultimate goal? Israel has attempted overtures to China for many years. With Israeli influence, China has made many gains in Africa. The question is, Why and How? The goal is to weaken both The USA and Russia by bringing them into direct military conflict. This would propel Chinas position in the world order, hopefully strengthening Israels position and influence and control. But China is not that gullable; it has learned many lessons from the western example. The west and middle east and south would be flooded with drugs, further enslaving the world. If one wants to know the future; you must know the past.

  7. Well said, every word. Absolutely right. Slowly, Americans are getting it, too.

  8. KA says: • Website

    To NB
    Why Israel is being cited here
    For the following reasons – Israel has been asking for regime change in Syria ( asking is a mild word ) from 1991 through the back passage of Wolfowitz and from 2002 from the cabal of Sharon gang. It has tried to implicate Syria for Harriri killings through multiple levers . It has attacked Syria every few years from 2006 without condemnation and sanctions ( the one of many advantages of 911 and of the anti Muslim hatred created by Pipes, Liberman,Kruthammer, Saffire, Kristol, Rachel Abrams, Geller, lawyer by name David Yerushalmi ,anti Park 51 hysteria , anti Sharia hysteria ,) .It has been blaming Syria for using gas and was providing information on created and manufactured intercepts .It was passing those talking points to the US Zionist ( it does not have to pass .Each know what other Zionist is thinking ) . It has been colluding with Jordan, S Arab and US in training the Jihadist in Jordan. Israeli vision of Syria, A K A of ME is the vision enshrined in it’s creation which is the balkanization of ME along ethnic and tribal lines , introduced by WEizman-Ben Gurion- Jabotinsky and reiterated by Yoded Yinon , Sharon, PNAC,Nathanhoo.

  9. KA says: • Website

    Giraldi forgets to mention that the terrorism by letter bombs and similar methods were perfected by the Zionist against the west . Zionist and the country Israel were the first to use hijacking as terror tools. It has used terror on US soils form 1970 to 1990 and beyond .

  10. KA says: • Website

    B Lewis is a renowned scholar and has done informed works on Islamic civilization .There are many scholars of Jeiwish faith who have illuminated the world with their works on Islam.There are strong Jewish support for the victims of Islamophobia in US .

  11. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Look. The world being entrappped by smart guys of Israelis. Shameless.

  12. NB says: • Website

    KA, your comment contains a number of false and misleading statements. I’ll briefly point out some of them, though I’m not sure why I’m bothering to respond at all given your outrageous claim that “Each know what other Zionist is thinking”:
    1. “[Israel] has tried to implicate Syria for Harriri killings through multiple levers”
    Two UN reports have implicated Syrian government officials in the assassination of Rafic Hariri:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FitzGerald_Report
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mehlis_Report

    2. “[Israel] has been blaming Syria for using gas and was providing information on created and manufactured intercepts”
    I take it your source is Philip Giraldi for this claim? I’ve already debunked Giraldi’s piece here:
    http://www.unz.com/article/quitting-over-syria/#comment-51936

    3. “[Israel] has attacked Syria every few years from 2006 without condemnation and sanctions”
    Yes, it’s true that in 2007, Israel carried out an airstrike on a Syrian nuclear reactor and that Israel has attacked Syrian missile shipments/bases during the Syrian Civil War. The US invaded Iraq based on fake intelligence (no nuclear reactors were found in Iraq, whereas the IAEA confirmed that the Syrian site Israel had bombed was in fact a nuclear reactor) and has been conducting an ongoing drone war in Pakistan. The US has caused far more civilian deaths in the past decade than Israel. Do you think the US should be sanctioned?

  13. Al says:

    You mean the Italian Red Brigades?

  14. KA says: • Website

    NB

    The lies from 1 and 2 with some modification after being pointed out 1-http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/08/syria-chemical-weapons-not-assad-bild
    2 -http://www.timesofisrael.com/idf-intercepted-syrian-regime-chatter-on-chemical-attack/

    3-Verify chemical weapons use before unleashing the dogs of war

    Posted By Kenneth Timmerman On 4:27 PM 08/29/2013 In | No Comments

    The Obama administration has selectively used intelligence to justify military strikes on Syria, former military officers with access to the original intelligence reports say, in a manner that goes far beyond what critics charged the Bush administration of doing in the run-up to the 2003 Iraq war.

    According to these officers, who served in top positions in the United States, Britain, France, Israel, and Jordan, a Syrian military communication intercepted by Israel’s famed Unit 8200 electronic intelligence outfit has been doctored so that it leads a reader to just the opposite conclusion reached by the original report.

    The doctored report was leaked to a private Internet-based newsletter that boasts of close ties to the Israeli intelligence community, and led to news reports that the United States now had firm evidence showing that the Syrian government had ordered the chemical weapons attack on August 21 against a rebel-controlled suburb of Damascus.

    The doctored report was picked up on Israel’s Channel 2 TV on Aug. 24, then by Focus magazine in Germany, the Times of Israel, and eventually by The Cable in Washington, DC.

    According to the doctored report, the chemical attack was carried out by the 155th Brigade of the 4th Armored Division of the Syrian Army, an elite unit commanded by Maher al-Assad, the president’s brother.

    However, the original communication intercepted by Unit 8200 between a major in command of the rocket troops assigned to the 155th Brigade of the 4th Armored Division, and the general staff, shows just the opposite.

    The general staff officer asked the major if he was responsible for the chemical weapons attack. From the tone of the conversation, it was clear that “the Syrian general staff were out of their minds with panic that an unauthorized strike had been launched by the 155th Brigade in express defiance of their instructions,” the former officers say.

    According to the transcript of the original Unit 8200 report, the major “hotly denied firing any of his missiles” and invited the general staff to come and verify that all his weapons were present.

    The report contains a note at the end that the major was interrogated by Syrian intelligence for three days, then returned to command of his unit. “All of his weapons were accounted for,” the report stated.

    The New York Times reported this morning that the White House is now backing off its claims to have a “smoking gun that directly links President Bashar al-Assad to the attack.”

    According to Monday’s Wall Street Journal, a senior administration official called UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon before the inspectors ever left Damascus, “telling him the inspection mission was pointless and no longer safe.”

    4 “Assad, Russia, Iran & Hezbollah pose a greater danger than al Qaeda!”
    Itamar Rabinovich.

  15. KA says: • Website

    NB]

    “Syria would be shooting itself in the foot by taking any action that invites chaos in Lebanon.
    Syria’s presence in Lebanon has become totally unacceptable to the US-President and Congress during the past four years. The Syria Accountability Act of 2003 and Security Council resolution 1559 of October 2004 impose sanctions on Syria and require Syria’s exit from Lebanon. Thus, Syria has been behaving cautiously.

    “These operative’s push for an invasion of Iraq in 2002/03 is now being renewed against Syria and Iran, while a new formula for a Lebanon minus Hizbullah is being geared up. Such a formula would enable Israel to achieve two of the strategic goals of its 1982 invasion, which had been foiled by the Lebanese resistance. That is why Lebanon without Syrian troops and impotent Hizbullah is now a US and Israeli declared objective.

    Hariri’s death, no matter who arranged it, is the perfect opportunity to implement the Israeli/US strategy, and revisit Israel’s frustrated plans of 1982.

    death of Rafiq Hariri is inextricably linked to the ongoing remapping which lies at the crossroads after the war in Afghanistan, followed by Sharon’s war on the Palestinians, and the invasion of Iraq. It was like fuel poured on the fire of these conflicts conveniently classified as wars against terror.

    Should the grand strategy succeed in the way conceived by the Washington neo-conservatives and Tel Aviv’s Likudists, the old pillars, which kept a semblance of an Arab world going, will have been dealt a severe blow. The formulae affecting Iraq, Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Sudan and the Gulf will have been shattered.” by Naseer Aruri is Chancellor Professor (Emeritus) at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

  16. KA says: • Website

    NB

    ” —United Nations International Independent Investigation Commission (UNIIIC) was determined to pin the crime either on Syria or its Lebanese ally Hezbollah and refused to pursue the Al-Qaeda angle.

    Detlev Mehlis, the first head of UNIIIC, was convinced from the beginning that Syrian military intelligence and its Lebanese allies had carried out the bombing and went to extraordinary lengths to link Ahmed Abu Adas, who had appeared in a videotape claiming responsibility for the assassination for a previously unknown group, to Syrian intelligence.—

    In his March 2006 report, Brammertz said the “priority” of UNIIIC “is being given not to the team that carried out the assassination but to those who ‘enabled’ the crime”.

    And Brammertz had still not abandoned the story originally planted by the false witnesses in 2005 that the role of Adas in making the videotape had been manipulated by Syrian intelligence.

    In his June 2006 report, Brammertz said the Commission continued to “entertain the idea” that whoever detonated the bomb may have been “coerced into doing so”. And in the September 2006 report, he suggested that Adas may have been coerced into delivering the videotape, just as Mehlis had suggested in 2005.

    Despite the official Lebanese government report confirming it, Brammertz never publicly acknowledged that Adas was deeply involved with an Al-Qaeda cell, much less that its members had confessed to the killing of Hariri.

    Daniel Bellemare, the prosecutor for the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, similarly chose not to pursue that evidence, which directly contradicts the assertion in his indictment that it was a Hezbollah operative – not Al-Qaeda – who had convinced Adas to make the videotape.
    http://www.counterpunch.com

    by Gareth Porter is an investigative historian and journalist with Inter-Press Service specialising in U.S. national security policy

  17. KA says: • Website

    NB

    “The politicization of the UN investigation was in full swing when the tribunal issued several reports accusing the Syrian regime, based on non-credible witnesses. It took four years for the tribunal to admit that much of “the evidence” used against Syria was fabricated by false witnesses, some of them even tied to Israeli intelligence (Abdelbasit Bani Odeh) or the CIA and other Western intelligence agencies (Ahmad Mari‘e and Zuhair Siddiq).

    By the end of 2009, the whole case against Syria collapsed and the four senior security officers held for over four years were consequently released. In the mean time, the false witnesses were relocated outside Lebanon and given protection and new identities in different European countries.

    Meanwhile, a new tribunal was appointed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon in March 2009. The new team was led by Italian judge Antonio Cassesse and Canadian prosecutor Daniel Bellemare. On May 23, 2009, the German publication Der Spiegel published a report detailing the new direction of the second investigative team.

    Basing their conclusions on leaks from the international tribunal, the German article, as well as many other subsequent Israeli media accounts, reported that members of Hezbollah were behind the assassination. In the spring of 2010, Prime Minister Saad Hariri told Hezbollah leader Hasan Nasrallah that an indictment against members of his group was expected before the end of the year.

    This development prompted Nasrallah to charge the reconstituted international tribunal of being a political instrument in the hands of the United States and Israel. This self-serving statement would have been easily dismissed except that the first tribunal was indeed used against Syria for political ends.

    Moreover, the efforts since 2005 to disarm Hezbollah, including the summer war between Israel and Hezbollah in 2006, have not only failed, but the militant group has become even stronger and better armed. Hence, the attempt to neutralize it through international pressure has accelerated within the last year.

    On August 9, Nasrallah, gave a masterful multimedia performance pointing a finger towards Israel and accusing it of involvement in the assassination. He admitted that he did not have direct evidence but over the span of two hours he presented a case of circumstantial evidence that showed means, motive, and opportunity for Israel.

    He displayed video testimony of several agents of Israel in Lebanon, demonstrating that at least since September, 1993, the Israeli Mossad had been tracking Hariri. The agent Ahmad Nasrallah (no relation), confessed that he had been planting with his security detail false stories that Hariri was a target of assassination by Hezbollah. Although the agent had been detained since 1996, he escaped from a Lebanese prison several years later and fled to Israel.”

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2010/08/16/who-killed-hariri/

  18. Alex says:

    America has many Jewish senators and openly supporting Israelis national interest before American interest.
    Iraq invasion road map architects we all know who they are.
    Any American leaders were against Israeli National interest we all see whats happen to them,JFK (did not want Israel have a nuclear bomb)
    Richard Nixon (Watergate) even Bill Clinton (Monica Lewinsky Affairs) and many more.
    Hypothetically speaking If Muslim’s extinct from this earth does Jewish senators will be happy and Palestine headache will be cured?
    Unfortunately it is very easy to fool the public all the time/
    How come Americans not stand up & protest invasion by Jewish senators in their their congress?

  19. NB says: • Website

    Alex, I didn’t know that Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and George W. “Saddam tried to kill my Dad” Bush are Jewish or that the Israelis assassinated JFK. Thanks for the new information.

  20. During a research project a few years ago I had to go through reel after reel of Microfilm for the year of 1944. I couldn’t help notice that there were more than a few reports of terrorism in Palestine. They were all perpetrated by zionists against local Arabs and British personnel. This was in 1944, while the Allies were liberating Europe from the Nazis!

    I’ve also read of the training of specifically Jewish units within the British Army. These units were never deployed during the fighting in Europe but were trained as part of Churchill’s drive to fight the Germans with unorthodox, commando and resistance methods. We all know that many former members of the Soviet backed partisans in Eastern Europe flocked to Israel on the cessation of hostilities. I mention this for historical verisimilitude and also to make the point that it seems the Allies are most to blame for introducing organized, trained terror to the Middle East in the first instance. Of course under Soviet tutelage, the Arabs became quick learners.

  21. NB says: • Website

    KA, you have not posted any credible sources to support your contentions. You stated, “[Israel] has been blaming Syria for using gas and was providing information on created and manufactured intercepts.” The Guardian article actually contradicts your claim (as well as Giraldi’s):
    “…the intercepts tended to add weight to the claims of the Obama administration and Britain and France that elements of the Assad regime, and not renegade rebel groups, were responsible for the attack in the suburb of Ghouta…”
    (The Guardian reported that anonymous sources claim that Assad did not personally order the chemical weapons attack; they did not dispute that the Syrian govt perpetrated the chemical weapons attack.)

    The Times of Israel article also did not state that the Israeli intelligence was fabricated. No credible sources have reported that. Counterpunch is not a credible source and cites no evidence for their claims. [Likewise, your sources challenging the UN reports on the Hariri assassination are not credible.]

    In contrast, credible sources report that the evidence implicates the Assad regime:
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-09-13/assad-sarin-gas-attack-claim-implausible/4951502

  22. NB says: • Website

    BMG stated: “I have often wondered why during the French revolution, the Russian revolution, the so called Syrian revolution, Churches have been looted and destroyed, while Synagogues have remained largely unscathed.”

    Do you have a credible source for your claims? There appear to be very few synagogues in Syria, and one of them was burned to the ground earlier this year:
    http://www.timesofisrael.com/historic-damascus-synagogue-looted-and-destroyed/

  23. KA says: • Website

    NB’s
    Bush/Rumsfield/Cheney were not Jeiwsh

    It shows the remarkable power the Lobby enjoys .It managed to convert Rumsfield and Cheney to its side in less than 6-7 years .Neither of them wanted to remove Saddam. Cheney was against it. But Cheney very soon after these years became member of the various committee supporting the Likud’s plans . Did he learn from the defeat of Sr Bush? Did he learn from Clinton?

    The person who did not change are Wolfowitz ,Perle,Kristol,Kagan,Solarz, Wurmser,Feith,Abrams,Adelman,Pollack,Bolton,and other soul mates of the Likudniks.
    Wolfowitz was fixated on Saddam from 1979 ( B Keller Sunshine warrior in NY Times . Wesley Clarke-1991 in a Book Club presentation ) , and was determined to divert resources and attention from BinLedeen to Saddam as shown by his blame game of Saddam for WTC 1993 bombing, 1995 Oaklahama bombing,and as documented in the book 500 days by Kurt Eichenwald . He later would blame everything and everybody including Oil lobby ( totally discounted by the book Transparent Cabal by Sniegoski ) .
    Bush’s fascination with Saddam was attributed to this quotes” He wanted to kill my father”. But Bush father was on the hit list of getting killed by Shamir in 1991 for Madrid peace conference also . He also told French President that he was in war as part of Gog and Agog fight -the Bibilical context and he said that he smote Saddam for God told him so. But he also told Wolfowitz cabal to provide him a reason to attack Saddam in 2001 -2002. Bush was used .
    And here is Stephen Solarz– “When [Bill] Clinton’s [presidential] campaign ran into trouble after a loss in New Hampshire to Paul Tsongas, Solarz was dispatched to Florida to scare Democrats away from Tsongas with claims that Tsongas, through his opposition to the Gulf War, had endangered Israel’s security. “-Steve Kornacki ( http://www.capitalnewyork.com/article/politics/2010/11/865162/steve-solarz-1940-2010-and-making-senator-schumer)
    Bolton was not of Jewish descent but here is Charles Schumer -“Schumer called many Democratic Senate colleagues and bluntly said, “A vote against John Bolton is a vote against Israel.” Steve Cleomons (http://www.thewashingtonnote.com/has_chuck_schum/)
    Bill and Kathleen Christison wrote a good deal focusing on the Israeli connection to the march to the war of 2003 in this article from http://www.counterpunch.org/2003/01/25/israel-american-jews-and-the-war-on-iraq/. Powell mentioned the JINSA crowd forcing this war. Olmert in 2006 , C Rice in her book, and Tony Blair -all mentioned that Israel security was involved in the march to war .So did Joe Klien and Tom Friedman much more pointedly . Phillipn Zelkow said same thing to the university students in Virginia .
    Why did the Nazi party of apartheid S Africa -NP support,embrace,and promote Israel ? Why did it not enforce its own Nuremberg Policy borrowed from Nazi Germany against the S African Jewish people but fully against the colored and the blacks? Mutual benefit explains why they did what they did

  24. KA says: • Website

    NB

    Check The Daily Caller for “Verify chemical weapons use before unleashing the dogs of war

    Posted By Kenneth Timmerman On 4:27 PM 08/29/2013 .

    Check theblaze.com or google Belgian teacher and Italian Journalist Syria gas or check http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2418378/Syrian-hostage-Domenico-
    or try USNews by Katherine Beard on Sept 10,2013

    For the co -opertaive nature of relation between aparthied S Africa and Israel read the article of Chris McGreal in the Guardian(UK) 6th Feb 2006 -brothers in arms-Israel’s secret pact with Pretoria

  25. Let’s cut off all aid to countries that bomb our ships. That ought to do it.

  26. Signor Giraldi, as usual, is concise and pointed in his thinking but he seems still not to have come to grips with what Gianfranco Sanguinetti pointed out decades ago in his essay on terrorism and the State. Has he even bothered to read it? Not only is there now no doubt at all that in Italy state sponsors were clandestinely “running” terrorist groups of know-nothing hotheads (like Negri for one, and the Red Brigades) but there is now also incontrovertible evidence that state sponsors were directly involved in terrorist acts.

    Sanguinetti sketches it all out memorably, and Signor Giraldi’s CIA was surely part of the mix, if at a distance.

    More important, though Sanguinetti’s work focuses on Italy, his treatment is also general enough to provide an interesting analysis of some current events. Indeed, various stray references suggest that Sanguinetti and Guy Debord are required reading by certain state agencies. This is a little like Capitalists reading Marx as a blueprint of what to do and not to do–and that is also a much more common practice than perhaps many would like to admit.

    It is a pity Signor Giraldi has such a blind eye, though it is not so much of surprise.

  27. schmenz says:

    According to “NB” no sources that counter his claims are credible; only his sources are credible. NB believes, apparently, that Wikipedia is the be-all and end-all of informed scholarship, considering how many times he refers to it.

    But I must point out to you, friend NB, that you are whistling past the graveyard on this one, for as is easily ascertained, the really horrible things that are going on in the Middle East, and in the Holy Land in particular, began to occur right after the year 1948. You may wish to look up that year on Wikipedia to discover what major event took place in the Middle East around that time.

    A quick answer to your question, ” Do you think the US should be sanctioned?”:

    Yes.

  28. NB says: • Website

    schmenz, I cite Wikipedia b/c Wiki tends to be fairly neutral and links to primary sources. Giraldi cited Wiki in his piece as well (except the wiki article to which he linked did not actually support his claim).

    The CounterPunch articles cite no evidence for their controversial claims. Is there a specific point I’ve made that you’d like to contest?

    Yes, I know what happened in 1948. After the Arabs rejected the two-state solution they were offered in the 1947 UN Partition Plan, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, and Syria invaded Israel in order to “drive the Jews into the sea.” But I’m assuming you’re actually referring to the war crimes committed by Zionists during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and ignoring all the other stuff. Here’s another wiki link with a convenient list of violence/terrorism in Mandatory Palestine prior to 1948:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Violent_conflicts_in_the_British_Mandate_of_Palestine

  29. KA says: • Website

    Following are from the archives of New York Times 1947- 1948
    You can access it for reading from the link–http://mondoweiss.net/2011/05/picking-apart-the-new-york-timess-zionist-narrative-on-the-nakba-using-the-new-york-times.html

    ‘Picking apart the New York Times Zionist narrative on the Nakba . . . using the New York Times
    Yousef Munayyer on May 17, 2011 mondoweiss.net

    1-“Palestine Jews Minimize Arabs: Sure of Superiority, Settlers Feel They Can Win Natives By Reason or Force

    2-April 16, 1948 and titled “Jews Press Arabs in Pitched Battle in North Palestine“:

    3-April 16, 1948 and titled “Jews Press Arabs in Pitched Battle in North Palestine“:

    4 New York Times titled “Palestine Strife Creates DP Issue” is dated May 3rd, 1948

    5 New York Times story, this one from April 18th, 1948

    6 New York Times reported in an article from Feb. 29th, 1948 titled “The Army Called

    ‘Haganah’”

    For events unfolding in ME (Palestine ) from 1917, you can read
    1- Paris 1919
    2- Quicksand by G Wawro – Professor at one of the Universities in Texas
    3- Brandies/Frankfurter Connection by Bruce A Murphy
    4- Israel in the mind of America by Peter Grose
    5 America and the Founding of Israel
    6Truman by David McCullough
    7 Diary of David Ben Gurion
    8 Dairy of Herzl
    Mondoweiss.net is a good site for accessing the past as it happened in ME

  30. NB says: • Website

    KA, I already said in my first comment that I’m not denying the existence of Jewish terrorism. Indeed, it is discussed in the wiki link I posted above that lists violence/terrorism in Mandatory Palestine prior to 1948:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Violent_conflicts_in_the_British_Mandate_of_Palestine

    However, you are once again posting from sources that are not credible. At best, one could describe Mondoweiss as presenting a one-sided narrative of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. For example, you cite a particular Mondoweiss blog post that highlighted cherry-picked articles from the NYT archives in order to present the Mondoweiss anti-Israel narrative. Here are a couple random stories from the NYT archive that Mondoweiss conveniently omitted:
    Arabs lay siege to Jewish colony (January 1948)
    And here is an article that briefly mentions the Kfar Etzion massacre on May 13, 1948 in which most of the [Jewish] population was killed after surrendering to Arab troops:
    http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive/pdf?res=FB0711FA3F59157A93C4A8178ED85F4C8485F9

    Mondoweiss seems to think they’re unearthing new information, but in fact, the simple wiki link I posted above discussed the 1947-1948 Civil War in Mandatory Palestine, during which both sides committed atrocities, proving once again the value of Wikipedia, as it presents a balanced history of the violence/terrorism perpetrated by both Arabs and Jews.

  31. KA says: • Website

    MB

    What is not credible ? The double speak and the plan for Eretz Israel of the Zionist as documented by
    – Paris 1919
    2- Quicksand by G Wawro – Professor at one of the Universities in Texas
    3- Brandies/Frankfurter Connection by Bruce A Murphy
    4- Israel in the mind of America by Peter Grose
    5 America and the Founding of Israel
    6Truman by David McCullough
    7 Diary of David Ben Gurion
    8 Dairy of Herzl

    Your May 13 -1948 is the sad event but by that time Israeli thugs have cleaned 500,000 Arabs out of Palestine starting long before the declaration of the independence , from Nov 1947. This 1948 event was way after the killings by the Isareli forces.The violence did not start in 1936 or 1948.It was started when Balfour wrote that letter .

  32. NB says: • Website

    KA, Mondoweiss is not a credible source b/c at best, they present a one-sided narrative of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. They cherry-picked stories from the NYT archive about violence perpetrated by Jews and omitted the stories about Arab violence.

    you claimed: “our May 13 -1948 is the sad event but by that time Israeli thugs have cleaned 500,000 Arabs out of Palestine starting long before the declaration of the independence , from Nov 1947.”
    There are two problems with your statement:
    1. You parrot the Palestinian narrative: that the Arab exodus was due to expulsions by “Israeli thugs.” The Israeli narrative is that Arabs fled under orders by Arab authorities. As you might guess, the truth is somewhere in between. Here is a Time article from May 3, 1948:
    “Of the 60,000 Arabs who lived there, many had fled to safety even before the attack started….The mass evacuation, prompted partly by fear, partly by orders of Arab leaders, left the Arab quarter of Haifa a ghost city. More than pride and defiance was behind the Arab orders. By withdrawing Arab workers, their leaders hoped to paralyze Haifa.”
    http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,798519,00.html

    2. You seem to be implying that the Kfar Etzion massacre was somehow a justifiable response to months of violence (starting in November 1947) at the hands of “Israeli thugs.” Well, here is another story from the NYT archive dated November 30, 1947 that Mondoweiss conveniently omitted:
    http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive/pdf?res=F00E1EFC355E17738DDDA80894DA415B8788F1D3
    “In a violent Arab retort to the United Nations decision on Palestine [NB: the UN Partition Plan’s two-state solution], seven Jews were killed by Arab ambushes in Palestine today. Five were slain in an attack on one bus and one in an assault on another bus…
    The Arabs will wage a holy war if an attempt is made to enforce the partition plan, Dr. Hussein Khalidi, acting chairman of the Palestine Arab Higher Committee, declared in an interview tonight…
    Partition, Dr. Khalidi said, ‘is going to lead to a crusade against the Jews.’”

    KA states: “The violence did not start in 1936 or 1948.It was started when Balfour wrote that letter .”
    Well, perhaps you agree that Giraldi is mistaken when he claims Palestinian terrorism took root in the 1970s in response to the occupation? I guess that’s progress.

    Except the violence started before the Balfour Declaration too:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1834_Safed_pogrom

    1886 attack on Petah Tikva:
    http://books.google.com/books?id=8Teb4dKHQcoC&pg=PA82&lpg=PA82

  33. KA says: • Website

    MB
    Read the history of expulsion from Ben Morris and read the book — Israeli Peace Palestininan a justice by Thomas Are whose sources are from Irish interceptions of the radio messages from Israel sources adking Arabs to leave the lands for safety. Ben Gurion repeatedly directed Jewish forces to persuade the locals to leave and failing so , to force the locals to leave.
    Israel intransigence to to take the refugees back despite UN resolutions from 1948 and despite efforts by Truman to Kennedy administrations prove that Israel planned for the expulsion. It can also be surmised by the grand design of Israel to establish a launching pad in the heart of Palestine and use the state to increase the land mass,. That was the bone of contention betweenJabotinsky and Wrizmanin 1930 s . Jabotinsky wanted immediate state and expulsion. Weizman wanted a state and slow enlargement of Israel . Ben Guiron wrote same in his diary thateulsion was necessarry for to have a Jewish state.
    Israeli displacements by the new arrival before 19oo and seizure of lands from Arab created local fights between between Palestine and European Jewishbefore 19oo

  34. NB says: • Website

    KA, once again, you are only presenting one side of the story. I am aware of the expulsions and already acknowledged that. You refuse to acknowledge the other side of the story. Read the Time magazine article from 1948 that I posted.

    Also, in regard to the 1834 Safed pogrom, Jews lived in Safed for centuries prior to 1834. Are you justifying the 1834 Safed pogrom on the basis that Jews seized land from Arabs in Safed? Source please.

  35. KA says: • Website

    NB
    1834 Safed pogrom by peasants against an oppressive regime ( Egyptians king supported by Europeans from outside and elite privileged communities from Inside) The riot is eerily similar to the first pogrom ( according to the father of Bibi Netanhyahu ) in history – 36 AD against Local Jewish collaborators of the colonized of Egypt. Read the book by B. Netanyahu – Inquisition in. 15 th Century Spain – its a thick 1000 pages or more but first few pages fom ,6 to 12 will clear the muddy water why the pogrom took place and why it was a normal response .

  36. KA says: • Website

    NB
    The pogrom( Safed) was not state orchestrated neither was funded by smuggled weapons, and maintained with stolen WW2 weapons ,was not supported with largesse from state supporters from Europe and other countries ( Chekslovakia, US, Nicargua, Elsavador and Cuba) that made illegal transfer of weapons including airlines even before Israel was declared a state. It had more soldiers ready to take on combined Arab nations. Safedogrom was illegal but sponataneous violence by poor people against rich collaborators and violence was directed against both the Jewish and rich Muslim .

  37. NB says: • Website

    Please post a source supporting your claim that the 1834 Safed pogrom was a “normal response” to “rich collaborators.”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1834_Safed_pogrom
    “Most sources contend that the agitators used the prevailing lawlessness as an opportunity to attack and pillage the *weaker* members of society, namely the Jews and Christians.” (emphasis mine)

  38. KA says: • Website

    Reference–Jeff Halper (1991). Between redemption and revival: the Jewish yishuv of Jerusalem in the nineteenth century. Westview Press. p. 86. ISBN 978-0-8133-7855-8. – Then, in 1834, disaster struck. The Druze of the Galilee revolted against Ibrahim Pasha. Joined by Arabs who resented the Jews’ collaboration with the Egyptians, they fell upon the Jewish community of Safed just as the Jews in Jerusalem were being attacked. For days the looting and killing continued until Ibrahim Pasha finally suppressed the rebellion.”

    Interestingly the pogrom was not supported by the “state” (by was suppressed by the state)as would be all the riots and violence against Arabs by the pre Isreali Zionist with multilayered connections to foreign governmnets and international instituions and after 1948 , by the Israeli state .

  39. KA says: • Website

    NB

    Past violence does not justify future or current violence

    Following the invasion of presenet day Iraq by The Roman emperor Trajan–
    ” Meanwhile Jews in Roman Judea, having revolted in 66-70, were again rebelling in what historians call the Kitos War (115-17).

    Elsewhere too Semitic monotheism attached itself to political upheaval. In Cyrene (in what is now Libya) Jews revolted under the leadership of a self-styled messiah, Lukuas, in 115. His forces destroyed the Roman temples and government buildings in Cyrene, slaughtering Greeks and Romans, and advanced on Alexandria where they destroyed more pagan temples and the tomb of Pompey. Jews on the island of Cyprus rebelled as well, under one Artemion. (New Testament readers will recall reference to Jews in these far-flung locales: Simone of Cyrene who carries Jesus’ cross, and Paul’s traveling companion Barnabas, a Jew of Cyprus.)

    Religious-based terrorism became the order of the day, if we’re to believe the third century Greek historian Dio Cassius, who records (no doubt with some exaggeration) that Jewish rebels killed 220,000 in Cyrene and 240,000 on Cyprus.
    -As a result of this episode, according to Dio, Jews were expelled from Cyprus entirely)”

    GARY LEUPP is Professor of History at Tufts University, and Adjunct Professor of Comparative Religion
    http://www.counterpunch.org/2005/10/03/an-earlier-empire-s-war-on-iraq/

    Libya and Cyprus or Egypt or even Galliele were far removed from Iraq geogrpahically but the invasion fired up the Jewish zealots against the local pagans and the Greeks and the Romans .

    Violence in late 19th century and early 20th century against Jewish people were anticipated by the Zionist leaders .They figured it out that no one would like to be dispossessed of their lands and liveliehood .They admitted it openly that “only Iron will”, onely “force” ,only “violence” would make Palestine forget what was once Palestinian land.

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