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Middle East politics

Missiles struck Gaddafi's compound 25 minutes ago. Here's hoping the sadistic bastard is finally dead.

Here's a video explaining in detail why this action was such a long time in coming.

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Egypt is not a democracy now and it is increasingly unlikely to become one. The revolution has failed.

The failure stems from a lack of leadership, general incomptence and a lack of courage by protesters who let the old regime go when they had it by the throat.

Quick, name a single prominent opposition group or leader espousing liberal democratic credentials - aside from Mohamed ElBaradei (whose democratic credentials have been undermined by his supine flirtation with the Muslim Brotherhood). Let us assume that the international media that have swarmed Egypt over the past several months are actually doing their jobs and that local journalists are now feel free to print information that people need to know. So where are the profiles of Egypt's version of Lech Walesa or Nelson Mandela? Why aren't we hearing more about the leaders of the revolution?

You cannot have representative government if there are no representatives ready and willing - even after the dictator has stepped down - to be a voice for the people. Indeed, to this day, we can't even be sure what precisely the revolution was all about, aside from toppling the old pharaoh.

This stems...More >>

yaakov katz jerusalem post israeli military army IDF strategic Middle East politics Iran SyriaThe Propagandist's Contributing Writer Stefan Frank interviewed Yaakov Katz, the Military Editor for The Jerusalem Post, about Israel`s strategic military outlook in the light of rapid changes in the region. Here is a transcript of their interview.

Two Iranian warships have crossed the Suez Canal. How should we see this incident in the light of the developments in Egypt?

Katz: For Iran, sending warships through the Suez Canal for the first time since the 1979 Islamic revolution is a way to flex its muscles, to show the world that it's a regional superpower in the Middle East, and that while Hosni Mubarak is kicked out of Egypt and while Muammar Gaddafi appears to be nearing his end in Libya, Iran is a strong country and it's growing militarily and economically. That's the message they're trying to send.

In addition, there`s the message they`re sending to Israel by sending the warships along its Mediterranean coast. Iran has nothing to look for in the Mediterranean. Iran already supports Hezballah in Lebanon and Hamas...More >>

libya revolution democracy politics canada usa NATO imperialist gaddafiThe political left is not alone in advocating what amounts to no support at all for the Libyan opposition forces fighting the dying Gaddafi regime. More than a few conservative commentators have suggested that "we don't have a dog in this fight" and as such, America and Europe need to take a hands-off approach to what's happening in North Africa. They're all wrong, of course.

With Gaddafi facing what may be an imminent rout, the free world ought not to sit this one out. If anything, we're late to the game. That no-fly zone should have been put in place weeks ago. The jet planes that dropped bombs on protesters should have in turn been converted into flying balls of flaming scrap.

Conservatives may disagree, but it is the representatives of the wingnut anti-imperialist left who disagree most entertainingly. Their heads are spinning so hard they're liable to fall off. A sort of case study may be found in Rabble contributor and Socialist Voice Co-Editor John Riddell's convoluted one-man boxing match, How to...More >>

The Propagandist magazine features political left right middle east politics revolution democracyThe days of rage and revolutions happening across the Middle East have captured our attention for the past couple of weeks. The pace of change has been breathtaking. In Libya, it seems like any hour now, Gaddafi is going to either get lynched or give himself up (and then get lynched anyway).

Here's a quick roundup of The Propagandist's recent coverage of these events:

gaddafi mad dog dictator libya british western democracy revolution politics middle eastOver at Terry Glavin's Chronicles and Dissent, Joe Mufferaw speculates on how the Mad Dog Gaddafi's investments in Britain might be used now to help protect the Libyan people. First, sell his North London estate for a tidy sum. Next, go shopping for a party crasher.

Ordinance specs and details are way above my pay grade but by the looks of them I'm thinking at least one of those bastards should be capable of piercing the velour that Big Daddy Moammar uses to make that fancy tent of his. Delivering one of these nosegays would be way cheaper than a conventional ground-troops invasion, it seems fair to guess. Plus, since the whole point is to protect the Libyan people, we'd have few of those firecracker packs left over in case any of Big Mo's sons or his generals needed to be given a short, sharp shock.

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libya revolution politics middle east democracy protesters bomb violenceIt’s official. If you had Muammar al-Gadhafi in your “biggest pussy in the known universe” office pool, you need to go collect your winnings.

Sorry, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Better luck next year.

As the world continues to digest reports that two Libyan air force pilots, allegedly ordered to bomb protesters, have defected to Malta it seems that Gadhafi has an even more grotesque joke to play on the civilized world. According to reports trickling out of Libya via news outlets like Al-Jazeera, Gadhafi may actually have pilots in his air force obliging enough to pull the trigger.

Of course, Al-Jazeera seems to hold questionable faith in these reports, putting quotation marks around the word “bomb”.

Gadhafi may not have even stopped there. Reports are also surfacing of Libyan troops opening fire on protesters with artillery.

With all of the means used to brutally suppress political dissent in countries like Iran and China, it seemingly took a butcher like Muammar al-Gadhafi to set the bar just a little bit higher.

I feel...More >>

united nations human rights council democracy middle east arab revolution politicsThe recent incidents on the streets of countries as far apart as Libya and Bahrain, Tunisia and Iran have riveted the Western world to its television sets and Twitter accounts. The sight of authoritarian regimes gunning down their own people as though they were swatting flies has us outraged. Western politicians and human rights activists issue sober statements. Western journalists devote indignant column inches to the question of ‘how could they?’  But one thing is conspicuous by its absence; any honest and thorough appraisal of how the West has been complicit for years in ensuring that such human rights abuses could come about.

To our disgrace, we in the West have largely stood by silently whilst the world’s premier human rights institution, the UN Human Rights Council, has been monopolised by nations which belong to the cadre of those today firing on their own civilians in the streets of Benghazi and Tehran. 

The Human Rights Council currently includes members such as Libya, Bahrain, China, Jordan, Pakistan, Qatar and Saudi...More >>

libya revolution western democracy freedom politics middle eastAs the Libyan regime lays into the protesters with all of the proven methods modern dictators use for slaughtering any political opposition crowd control, Terry Glavin points out the feeble response of the Western democracies.

One of the most vile and decrepit slave states on earth is teetering. As I write this, thousands of Libyans are joining the uprising against the Gaddafi regime. They are now pouring into the streets of Tripoli. The people have seized Benghazi and several other eastern towns. The regime continues to slaughter civilians, using mercenaries and helicopter gunships. Libyan diplomats are jumping ship. The tyrant's annointed heirs are vowing to fight to the last bullet. The free world stands by and watches.

The Libyan people have had to put up with more than 40 years of Pyongyang-On-The-Mediterranean, and yet it was only three days ago that the British government ordered UK gun firms to stop providing the Libyan regime with "security equipment" - the delicate English euphemism for massacre gear. Equally useless and just as delicate: Human Rights Watch.

Since the advent...More >>

two minutes hate nineteen eighty four orwell 1984 iranian regime middle east politicsOnce again, Iran proves itself to be an Orwellian dystopia modeled on the society portrayed in Nineteen Eighty-Four. Enjoy your Two Minutes Hate, citizens:

"The noble people of Tehran will take to Enghelab Square after Friday prayers with their solid and informed presence," the Islamic Propagation Coordination Council, which organizes regime-backed programs, said Wednesday.

It said those joining the rally will "scream out their hatred, wrath and disgust against the savage crimes and evil movements of sedition leaders, their Monafeghin (hypocrites) and their monarchist allies."

If there is hope, it lies with the proles protesters.

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