Posts Tagged ‘middle’

Syria: More Civilians Slaughtered by State

Monday, August 1st, 2011

Over 140 people have been reported dead as Syria’s ruthless ruling party launched another assault on protesters, the latest massacre since demonstrations began in March.

Yesterday, President Obama issued a statement on the situation in Syria.

“I am appalled by the Syrian government’s use of violence and brutality against its own people,” the president said. “The reports out of Hama are horrifying and demonstrate the true character of the Syrian regime. Once again, President Assad has shown that he is completely incapable and unwilling to respond to the legitimate grievances of the Syrian people.”

As well, the United Nations Security Council has called a meeting to discuss the escalating and appalling situation in Syria.

What… do those meatheads in charge of Syria think they can kill their way to peace? Or do they just not care, thinking the people are like misbehaving children in need of a lesson? Either way, it’s a disgrace to humankind.

Well, the actions of the ruling party and the military are shameful, anyway. But the brave protesters willing to stand in front of bullets and bombs for freedom – they epitomize the human spirit.

Stay strong, freedom fighters!

Syrians Staying Strong

Friday, July 15th, 2011

Cries of freedom and democracy could be heard across Syrian today, as over a million Syrians took to the streets demanding the resignation of President Bashar al-Assad.

Assad – the strongman who has maintained a repressive regime lasting 50 years – is desperately trying to keep a grip on power.

In response to today’s rallies, the regime ruthlessly shot live ammunition into crowds of unarmed protesters, killing at least 20 and bringing the death toll to over 1400 this year.

In addition, over 20,000 people have been arrested and are being held in torture camps and makeshift prisons around the country.

Much of the developed world could learn something from these brave Syrians. So many of us take democracy and freedom for granted, even to the point of willfully allowing it to erode.

Yet here, in Syria, as with the other nations undergoing revolutions, normal people are willing to die just to openly voice their discontent.

This is why it is so very imperative that we stay vigilant against tyranny – because once a dictatorship comes into power, it usually takes spilled blood to get them out.

Our News and Theirs

Wednesday, June 8th, 2011

Professor Juan Cole put out another of his intriguing pieces over on Informed Comment. This one outlines key differences between the mainstream media in the western world and that of the middle east.

Cole starts by describing the sad state of affairs in the US:

Americans live in a late capitalist society where the rich have gotten many times richer and the middle class has gotten poorer, where Wall Street bankers have stolen us blind and blamed us for living above our means, where persistent unemployment is worse than in the Great Depression, where most politicians and some judges have been bought by corporations or special interests, where authorities actively conspire to keep people from voting, where the government spies on citizens assiduously without warrant or probable cause, and where the minds of the sheep are kept off their fleecing by substituting celebrity gossip, sex scandals, and half-disguised bigotry for genuine news.

Professor Cole goes on to compare which stories dominate the headlines:

Our news is about Sarah Palin not knowing fifth grade American history. Their news is about killing 5 US soldiers in Iraq with rocket fire.

Our news is about a rich old French banker charged with assaulting a poor young Muslim maid in a New York hotel. Their news is about armed rebels setting an ambush and killing 120 members of the Syrian security forces.

Our news is about a six-term US congressman from New York who has been sexting. Their news is that Yemen is on a knife edge, with civil war looming.

Our news is about an American politician accused of misusing campaign contributions to hide his mistress. Their news is that Free Libya forces have used light arms and sheer guts to fight off Qaddafi’s tanks.

Cole does an excellent job detailing the striking differences between the Western and Arab worlds, but his work ends there. Never does he mention the mechanism behind the madness, detailing the way nonsense stories are used to intentionally to keep the majority of the Western population distracted and misinformed.

Still, it’s a well documented article worth exploring.

Yemen Uprisings Bearing Fruit

Sunday, April 24th, 2011

Three months of fierce pro-democracy protests in Yemen have yielded some concrete results. Yesterday, President Ali Abdullah Saleh agreed to relinquish his hold on power.

The resignation comes via a plan brokered by the Gulf Cooperation Council and endorsed by the official opposition coalition, giving Saleh’s regime 30 days to transition out of office.

The deal, while an excellent sign of progress, is not without some issues. One being the offer of immunity to Saleh and his family. The second being the 30 day window, which Yemenis fear might be used by Saleh to hang on to power.

Still, it’s great to see that another brutal dictatorship in the Middle East is set to topple. Long live freedom and democracy!

Don’t wait for the revolution. Make it happen.

Thursday, January 27th, 2011

balance of power

First Tunisia, then Egypt. Now Yemen and Algeria with others on the way. Political, social and economic reform is in the air!

The thousands of demonstrators who’ve been taking to the streets are expressing a sentiment shared by millions of their fellow citizens: they are fed up with being mistreated by authority. Via this forced regime change, the activists are collectively pushing the balance of power towards the favor of the people. Under new governance, the populations in these revolutionary countries could potentially enjoy a higher quality of life.

See, within any population, there exists a struggle between the will of the people and the system they depend upon to maintain order. The further a population strays from a functioning democracy, the less the voice of the people gets reflected by the system. It is within this silence where injustices go unanswered.

The energy emanating from the Arab world should add fuel to a similar movement that has been brewing everywhere on earth. For far too long, humankind has been oppressed by a broken system that benefits our corrupt leaders to the detriment of the majority of humans. Having grown tired of this injustice, and becoming aware of alternatives, we are rising up as a species. Working together, we’re shifting the balance of the world’s power back into our hands.

It’s a good thing we’ve already begun this movement, since now is the only time left for revolution. Within a few years from now, civil uprisings like we see today will become much easier for the system to squash.

Consider, for example, the advent of robotic soldiers, which will be entirely feasible within 10 to 20 years. Right now, human combatants still have some sense of morality, and occasionally disobey orders. But robots follow command without question and can slaughter unlimited numbers of humans without remorse. A dictator with a small army of mechanized drones could effectively subdue entire populations.

Robotic overlords is but one scenario where technology can be used to control large groups of people, of which there are many. The threat of totalitarianism is real and growing, which is why it is so imperative we ignite our revolutions now.

Fortunately, as much as technology can be used to enslave us, so too can it be used to liberate us. We’ve been gaining invaluable tools in our revolutionary arsenal. Transparency-promoting sites like Wikileaks help expose corruption and can hold leaders accountable to their populations. On top of this, as tested in Tunisia, Twitter and Facebook can effectively channel a population’s dissent into highly mobilized action.

Our new technology, combined with the indomitable human spirit, gives us some real reasons to expect great things in our future. Today, populations from the middle east are rising up as one to oust their corrupt rulers. Over the coming years, the world’s people will follow suit, uniting to fundamentally alter the global system and forever shift the balance of power to benefit all of humankind.

Power to the people!

Positive Signs of Progress From Within Israel

Wednesday, January 19th, 2011

0tel-aviv(Palestinian flags alongside Israeli flags in yesterday’s Tel Aviv protest)

Thousands of Israeli citizens took to the streets in Tel Aviv to support democracy and oppose fascist governmental policies.

It is so refreshing to see these protests being held in the heart of Israel. Even within a country that perpetuates such grave injustices, the sane voice of the common human can still be heard.

Israel gets a lot of flack from the rest of the world, and rightfully so. But let’s not forget how most of the Israeli people are just like humans everywhere else on earth, and we should not hold an entire population accountable for the actions of the extremists.

Go freedom fighters of Israel! Go freedom fighters of the world!

Nearing the End of the Plight of the Palestinian People

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

It seems we won’t have to wait six months for Wikileaks to slow-leak some dirt on Israel. The Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten yes, the same group who received the leaked Wikileak leak – claim the cables indicate Israel is preparing for a “Major War” in the Middle East.

The reason to expect this major war? Well, it might had to do with what was revealed in another leaked cable: the Israeli government has intentionally kept Gaza on the brink of economic collapse!

Disgusting, isn’t it. Weakening political adversaries by imposing dire conditions on the entire population is hardly commendable or justifiable. In fact, if it isn’t a war crime , it is certainly a violation of international humanitarian law.

How could this happen? How could people of the Jewish faith – with persecution being such an integral part Judaism – condone the torture of millions of people?

Of course, these atrocities are being perpetuated by the Zionist wing of the Jewish faith. So to blame all Jews for what Israel is doing would parallel blaming all Muslims for the actions of fundamentalist extremists.

Yet it is still a disgrace to humankind to see the systematic torture of children, women and men.

Fortunately, as more secrets seep out and the world awakens to what is really going on, empathy towards the plight of the Palestinian people is sure to grow.

Hopefully, Apartheid will end in Israel as it did South Africa, when the world’s people rise up and stand together against the injustice.