Should US policy against Iran be taken seriously?, by Thierry Meyssan

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The US President’s speech on Iran was preceded by a Press conference at the State Department accusing Hezbollah of exporting terrorism all over the world on behalf of Teheran [1]. To show that the US was ready to put its money where its mouth is, a reward was offered for the arrest of two of its commanders. But – surprise! – not a word about Hezbollah’s victories against the jihadists, nor about the 800 million dollars that Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei has just offered to the Lebanese Resistance [2].

President Trump then took the floor and wasted no time in loading insults on the inheritance of Imam Ruhollah Khomeini, the Revolutionary Guard, and the Supreme Leader [3].

He proffered all sorts of weary old accusations which have long been disproven, and laid the foundations for accusations that they are responsible for the resurgence of Al-Qaïda.

Even before his speech had come to a close, oil was already up by 85 cents per barrel, since the market was betting on the cancellation of Iranian oil investments. In the hours that followed, every one of the Western states and Russia deplored Donald Trump’s aggressivity, while Israël and Saudi Arabia applauded.

However, the only decisions announced by President Trump and the State Department are the reward mentioned above and the pause in the certification of the 5+1 agreement before Congress [4]; the latter decision does not concern international relations, but exclusively the interior politics of the United States. The agreement of 14 July 2015 was adopted by the United Nations Security Council, which alone can repeal it. Of course, all diplomats know that behind this multilateral agreement, the United States and Iran have agreed to a secret bilateral protocol which defines their respective roles in the Greater Middle East. At the time of writing, no-one is able to say whether or not President Trump has called this protocol into question. Consequently, all reactions to the declarations of the State Department and to his speech on 13 October are nothing more than fan dancing.

The ruling classes of the United States and Iran have always obsessed about their respective relations. During the Revolution of 1979, the Carter administration was so deeply divided that the Secretary of State, Cyrus Vance, and the Security Advisor, Zbigniew Brzeziński, confronted one another, and both threatened to resign if the President would not listen to them. It was finally Brzeziński who won out, but not without masking the arrest of spies from the US embassy in Teheran as the sequestration of « hostages », and then covering himself with ridicule by failing to free them [5]. From the time of this incident, the relations between Washington and Teheran have been a succession of media lies having nothing to do with reality.

From the Iranian point of view, the United Kingdom and the United States are lying predators who have colonised and exploited their country, and who continue to crush other states which have so far failed to revolt. This is why Iranians commonly call them by the nicknames of « Little Satan » and « Big Satan ». According to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, every man worth his salt must fight against their perverted ways. But from another point of view, the Anglo-Saxons are not all bad, and there is no reason not to do business with them.

During the Bush Jr. administration, Vice-President Dick Cheney never ceased plotting with London and Tel-Aviv to attack Teheran. He created the very secret « Iran Syria Policy and Operations Group » around his daughter, Liz Cheney, and an old secret operations veteran, Elliott Abrams. He first considered the use of nuclear weapons, then supporting an Israëli attack from airports rented from Georgia. However, what happened was exactly the opposite –Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the US Chief of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, met in secret on 2 March 2008 in Baghdad. By overthrowing the Afghan Taliban and Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, the United States eliminated the enemies of Iran on his behalf, and favoured his regional influence.

During the Obama administration, the White House attempted to overthrow President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad by organising the colour revolution of 2009. Having drawn the conclusions of its failure, it initiated contact with its opponents, united around ex-President Hachemi Rafsandjani. It so happens that in the period between 1983 and 1986, the US National Security Council organised the Iran-Contra operation. At that time, Colonel Oliver North and the ubiquitous Elliott Abrams relied on a deputy, Cheikh Hassan Rohani, who introduced them to the Hodjatoleslam Rafsandjani. It was with this group that the Obama administration began talks in Oman, in March 2013. By some form of administrative pirouette, Ahmadinejad’s candidate was not authorised to present himself in the Presidential elections, which were won by Cheikh Rohani five months later. As soon as he gained power, Rohani began official negotiations for the 5+1 agreement that he had imagined during the Oman negotiations.

As for Donald Trump, he never failed to maintain a violently anti-Iranian discourse during his election campaign. This was also the position of his first Security Advisor, General Michael Flynn. However, since his arrival in the White House last January, the President has eliminated, one by one, all of his anti-Iranian advisors (with the exception of Mike Pompeo, the current Director of the CIA). On the contrary, his three main advisors are pro-Iranian (the Director of his cabinet, General John Kelly, his Secretary of Defense, General James Mattis, and his Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson).

Incidentally, it is interesting to note that during the nomination of the Secretary of State, the pro-Obama Press announced its certainty that the job would go to Elliott Abrams – yes, him again. The President received Abrams for a long time, asked him about his relations with Cheikh Rohani, then walked him to the door and nominated Tillerson.

It is always possible that President Trump could destroy the US-Iran agreement on an impulse, and even – much more serious – pick a quarrel with the Revolutionary Guards, but it is more probable that he will once again act up in order to soothe his Israëli and Saudi allies. We have to keep in mind that Donald Trump is not a professional politician, but a real estate promoter, and that he acts like one. He gained his professional success by spreading panic with his outrageous statements and observing the reactions he had created amongst his competitors and his partners.

In order to decide between these two hypotheses, we will have to wait for sanctions against the Revolutionary Guard. Then we shall see whether or not they are serious or simply an expression of Donald Trump’s manner and the traditional masquerade of the United States against Iran.

Source Article from http://www.voltairenet.org/article198429.html

Movie Mogul Harvey Weinstein–‘I Am Israeli in My Heart and Mind…Jews should get as organized as the mafia in fighting anti-Semitism’

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Source Article from https://theuglytruth.wordpress.com/2017/10/14/movie-mogul-harvey-weinstein-i-am-israeli-in-my-heart-and-mind-jews-should-get-as-organized-as-the-mafia-in-fighting-anti-semitism/

White House: Senate should stop taking vacations

WASHINGTON — The White House on Tuesday brushed aside concerns that President Trump’s regular attacks on prominent congressional Republicans may be hurting his legislative agenda by alienating important allies, then scolded lawmakers for spending so much time outside of Washington.

“He’s calling on Congress to get their job done. They’re on another vacation right now,” Trump’s press secretary, Sarah Sanders, told reporters at her daily briefing. “I think that we would all be a lot better off if the Senate would stop taking vacations and start staying here until we get actually get some real things accomplished. The president’s here and committed to working with them to do that.”

The Senate is out of session this week. But Trump is no slouch in the vacation department: A Washington Post analysis in August found that he has taken roughly triple the amount of the leisure time Barack Obama had taken by the same point in his presidency.

Sanders had been asked about the impact of Trump’s propensity to wage public fights against Republicans in Congress. In the latest dust-up, the president and Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker have traded barbs. On Tuesday, Trump mocked “Liddle’ Bob Corker,” perhaps responding to Corker’s jab that the White House has become an “adult day care center.”

Some observers have questioned the wisdom of feuding with Republicans when the party’s narrow 52-48 seat edge in the Senate means losing just three GOP votes for a piece of legislation almost certainly spells its defeat.

But Sanders disputed the idea that the president bore responsibility for any bad blood.

“I don’t think he’s alienated anyone; I think that Congress has alienated themselves by not actually getting the job done that the people of this country elected them to do,” she said.

“They all promised and campaigned on repealing and replacing Obamacare; they haven’t done that. They campaigned on tax reform; hopefully we see that happen — we’re certainly committed to that and think we’ll get there,” Sanders told reporters. “But time and time, again Congress has made promises and failed to deliver. If anyone is being alienated, it’s people that are promising things and not delivering.”

Since his January inauguration, Trump has tweeted harsh words about Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan, Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Republican Sens. John McCain, Jeff Flake, Lindsey Graham, Lisa Murkowski and Corker, among others.

While those attacks have left lawmakers and aides confounded and annoyed, it’s not clear that the rebukes have had much of an impact on cooperation between the White House and the GOP majority in Congress. While Trump is broadly unpopular with the U.S. public in general, he retains the support of a large majority of Republican voters — the same voters GOP lawmakers will need in the 2018 midterm elections.

Read more from Yahoo News:

Source Article from https://www.yahoo.com/news/white-house-senate-stop-taking-vacations-194413224.html

Consider Yourself A Great Partner? This 5-Question Quiz Should Prove It







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If you were asked to describe your ideal partner, chances are that you would be quite capable of outlining the features, qualities, and characteristics you would love them to boast.

Even if you believe yourself to currently be with your ‘ideal’ mate, there are always places for improvement (some far more sensical than others) that most of us internalize for the sake of keeping the relationship in place.

But rather than focusing on our existing or future significant other, it’s time for us to assess ourselves and determine just how great of a partner we actually make. To do this, I’ve put together a simple five-question quiz for you to go through and answer.

Each question is based on information that I have informally gathered over time from several long-standing relationships that I admire. Their insight has led me to conclude that these facets can be essential to the building of a relationship foundation strong enough to pass the test of time — even in a world dominated by divorce.

How to Keep Score

The scoring system is based on subtraction, so we all start with a perfect 10 out of 10 points.

For each of the five questions, rate yourself a 0, -1, or -2.

Give yourself a ‘0’ if you embody that trait perfectly, a ‘-1’ if you could use some improvement, and a ‘-2’ if you need some serious work.

With that system in mind, it’s time to take the quiz! I’ve put it together in both video and written form, so choose your medium (and be honest with your responses!). 


Question 1: How Well Do You Listen?

Before you instinctively assume yourself to be a great listener, take a moment to honestly think of your typical thought process when talking with someone. Do you actively listen to what they are saying and process it for consideration? Or do you spend the majority of your “listening” time instead formulating your response (whether it be related to the subject matter at hand or not)?

Another factor to keep in mind is how well you listen when the topic is not particularly drama-filled or juicy. It’s traditionally much easier to stay engaged when your wife is telling you about something scandalous happening in one of her friend’s lives versus when she is running you through the happenings of an ordinary day.

Question 2: How Do You React to Their Successes and Failures?

We are all subject to various successes and failures in life, and our partners are no exception. But let’s focus on how you tend to react to the results that stem from the various endeavours they engage in.

Forget how you outwardly react, and focus on how you internally feel when a significant other thrives or fails. When they succeed are you genuinely happy for them at all levels? Or are you actually somewhat jealous of them? And when they fail, does any part of you feel either ashamed or — even worse — prideful in how that makes you feel by comparison?

Question 3: How Do You Respond to Their Need for Help?

When emergencies strike, we all, for the most part, answer the call to action from all of our friends and loved ones. But what about those times when your partner asks for your help with doing something that you didn’t anticipate yourself having to do?

Again focus on your initial internal reaction when you are asked to go grab something at the grocery store or pick up the kids from a friend’s house. Are you typically genuinely happy to provide this assistance? Or do you tend to either snap back in rejection, or accomplish it begrudgingly? 

Question 4: Can You Co-Exist in Silence?

For the most part, it’s relatively easy to spend time with a significant other when there is a third party involved. Whether it be another person, a particular place, or some form of entertainment, it’s easy to spend time with someone when there is something there to distract us. 

But what about those moments without any distraction in place? Can you easily spend time with just your partner or does it get boring and/or awkward quickly? This is not only a test of presence with each other, but also a challenge of your ability to be with your thoughts.

Question 5: How Do You Feel When You Have Time Apart?

This isn’t about gauging how much you do or don’t long for your partner when life pulls you apart, but rather the initial feeling you have when you find yourselves separated. Does part of you miss the person you proclaim to love? Or do you instead feel a sense of relief when you finally break free from their company?

No good relationship is ever built when one or both parties feel as though they cannot be themselves with the other, and a feeling of relief when they’re gone is one sign that you feel better off without them. 


How many points do you have left?

We’re all a work in progress, myself included, so use the results of this test as a guide that reveals the elements in your relationship you could use some work on. Even just being aware of them can often work wonders in making improvements.

Do you enjoy uplifting personal development content like this? SIGN UP for my mailing list to be notified of my newest content weekly. As a gift for doing so, I will personally send you 3 FREE tools to help conquer all forms of anxiety to your inbox within 48 hours!


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Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Collective-evolution/~3/-UJqYZ72v_M/

Re: 100 Years After Balfour we should reflect, not celebrate

A new film by the Independent Jewish Voices – a network of Jews in Britain with a shared commitment to human rights and a just and peaceful solution to the Israel/Palestine conflict – screened at MEMO’s Balfour conference highlights the legacy of the 1917 Balfour Declaration.

Starring Jon Snow, Avi Shlaim and Jacqueline Rose, “100 Years After Balfour” argues that this year’s centenary is a time for reflection, not celebration.

On 2 November 1917 Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour delivered a letter to the Zionist Federation promising British support for a home for the Jewish people in Palestine.

Read more: MEMO hosts ‘Palestine, Britain and the Balfour Declaration 100 years on’

This letter and the subsequent decisions made by the British government were linked to the 1948 establishment of the state of Israel and the years of occupation that followed.

Professor Shlaim said: ‘This autumn, many in the Jewish community as well as the UK government are celebrating this centenary.”

“This new film by Independent Jewish Voices shows that a significant minority of Jews in Britain take a different view, seeing this as a time to reflect on the profoundly negative consequences of the Balfour Declaration, especially for the Palestinians.’

Screenings will be taking place in November, including on Friday 17 November at the Birkbeck Institute for the Moving Image.



Source Article from https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20171009-100-years-after-balfour-we-should-reflect-not-celebrate/#comment-3560272550

Why you should consider drinking tea: It boosts metabolism and, experts now believe, acts as a prebiotic for good gut health

Image: Why you should consider drinking tea: It boosts metabolism and, experts now believe, acts as a prebiotic for good gut health

(Natural News)

A new study claims that drinking tea without milk can speed up your metabolism and promote good gut health, as reported by The Daily Mail. The researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles studied the relationship of metabolism and tea by conducting an experiment in mice. They divided the mice into four groups and gave each group different diets, which included low-fat, high-sugar; high-fat, high-sugar; high-fat, high-sugar, and green tea extract; and high-fat, high-sugar, and black tea extract. The study was conducted in a span of four weeks.

Towards the end of the experiment, the researchers made an evaluation on the weight of the mice, bacteria content in the large intestine, and fat deposits in the liver tissues.

The findings, published in the European Journal of Nutrition, revealed that mice who received either green or black tea extract lost weight similar to the weight of those who had a low-fat diet. Moreover, the green and black tea extracts acted as a prebiotic for the intestines. The groups of mice that had either of the two green tea extracts had less intestinal bacteria linked with obesity and more microorganisms associated to lean body mass.

Surprisingly, the researchers discovered a new health benefit of black tea.

“For black tea lovers, there may be a new reason to keep drinking it,” said Zhaoping Li, an author of the study.

The group of mice who had black tea-extract were seen to have a bacteria that enhanced the metabolic processes. The researchers believe that this is because of the big size of the black tea’s molecules. As a result, these molecules of black tea are too large to be absorbed by the body, but instead they stay in the large intestine.

“It was known that green tea polyphenols are more effective and offer more health benefits than black tea polyphenols since green tea chemicals are absorbed into the blood and tissue,” said Susanne Henning, lead author of the study.

“Our new findings suggest that black tea, through a specific mechanism through the gut microbiome, may also contribute to good health and weight loss in humans,” said Henning.

Moreover, Henning said that the results suggest that both green and black teas are prebiotics, which are substances that prompt the growth of good microorganisms, which in turn can benefit to the health of a person. (Related: 10 Benefits of Drinking Black Tea to Improve Health.)

Other benefits of English breakfast tea

English breakfast tea is plain black tea without the addition of herbs or other ingredients. It is made from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant and is the second most commonly consumed drink, next to water. This tea has been popular in trades for centuries because of its flavor can be retained for many years. There are various health benefits that you can get from drinking black tea.

Black tea can make you look young and fit and can de-stress you. A study found that drinking black tea can lower the levels of the stress hormone cortisol more quickly than those who were given the fake or placebo tea.

Black tea was found to be beneficial for the cardiovascular health. One study discovered that those who drank black tea for four weeks had improvements in the functioning of their blood vessels by 50 percent. This may be the effect of the tea’s flavonoids, which are plant compounds that act as antioxidants and prevent the formation of plaque in artery walls.

Another benefit of black tea is it is considered an anti-cancer agent. A study found that a black tea compound known as theaflavin-3′-monogallate, or TF-2, caused colorectal cancer cells to self-destruct without damaging normal cells.

This tea was also found to increase memory, focus, and concentration, according to study. It is because of the combination of caffeine and L-Theanine, an amino acid found in tea that improves reaction time and memory.

Lastly, it can lower your cholesterol levels. One study found that five servings of black tea per day reduced cholesterol levels by 6.5 percent.

Read more news like this at Detox.news.

Sources include:

DailyMail.co.uk

Standard.co.uk

HealthyEating.SFGate.com

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Source Article from http://www.naturalnews.com/2017-10-09-why-you-should-consider-drinking-tea-it-boosts-metabolism-and-experts-now-believe-acts-as-a-prebiotic-for-good-gut-health.html

Trump suggests Senate Intel Committee should investigate U.S. news media

President Trump urged the Senate Intelligence Committee to switch its focus from Russian meddling in the 2016 election to investigating “fake news” in the U.S.

“Why Isn’t the Senate Intel Committee looking into the Fake News Networks in OUR country to see why so much of our news is just made up-FAKE!” Trump wrote on Twitter Thursday morning. “Rex Tillerson never threatened to resign. This is Fake News put out by @NBCNews. Low news and reporting standards. No verification from me,” he added.

The president was referring to two events from Wednesday: An NBC News report saying Secretary of State Rex Tillerson considered resigning, and a press conference by the leaders of the Senate Intelligence Committee discussing Russian efforts to influence the election.

Those leaders — Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., and Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va. — held a press briefing to discuss their investigation into Russia buying ads on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter in an apparent effort to influence the results of the 2016 election. CNN reported Wednesday that Russia had geo-targeted ads to Wisconsin and Michigan, two states Trump won by narrow margins.

Burr said during the statement that the committee would continue to investigate any potential collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign. This statement and reports from intelligence agencies run counter to the president’s stance that no one knows whether Russia tampered with the 2016 election.

“No, not investigating news organizations,” said Burr Thursday morning when asked whether his committee would be following the president’s suggestion.

Warner is a co-sponsor of legislation that would require digital platforms to disclose more information about any entities that buy political ads on their networks.

“If you see an ad on a social media site, Americans should know whether the source of that ad was a foreign entity,” said Warner, “and if you see something trending, you should know whether that trending is generated by real individuals or bots or falsely identified accounts.”

Trump was also angry about the NBC News report from Wednesday morning that Tillerson had called him a “moron” and thought about quitting the position earlier this year. Tillerson gave a statement after the report circulated refuting the idea that he had ever considered quitting and complimenting Trump’s intelligence, but declined to elaborate on whether or not he had insulted the president.

NBC News later reported that Tillerson had actually called Trump a “f***ing moron,” while CNN confirmed the “moron” comment through its sources. The State Department issued a clarification later Wednesday saying that Tillerson hadn’t called the president a moron and that he doesn’t use that kind of language.

Trump spent his flight to Las Vegas — where he was meeting with victims of and first responders to Sunday night’s mass shooting — tweeting about supposedly “fake news” and demanding an apology from NBC.

One potential barrier to Trump’s request of legislators investigating and regulating the press is the First Amendment, which explicitly states: “Congress shall make no law prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.”

(Cover tile photo: Yahoo News photo illustration; photos: Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP, Win McNamee/Getty Images, Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Read more from Yahoo News:

Source Article from https://www.yahoo.com/news/trump-suggests-senate-intel-committee-investigate-u-s-news-media-115901011.html

Warmonger Tony Blair thinks he should mediate Catalonia independence talks

    

Despite Tony Blair’s failure to secure peace in the Middle East and his launching of a bloody, illegal war in Iraq, the former PM reportedly thinks he’d be a good mediator between Catalonia and Madrid as tensions over independence grow.

According to the Daily Express, Blair has put himself forward to mediate talks between the Catalan administration led by Carles Puigdemont and the conservative leadership of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy in Madrid.

While Blair considers himself an expert negotiator following his involvement in the Good Friday talks in Northern Ireland, and as Middle East peace envoy for the United Nations, his critics fiercely disagree.

Blair held the UN post for eight years, but failed to secure any real progress in peace talks between Israel and Palestine. Observers of his UN role said he turned up no more than once a month, and would stay for just two or three days.

His “achievements,” including the removal of Israeli checkpoints in some areas, are disputed by some observers who say they would have happened anyway. Blair’s plans to cut unemployment, kick-start the economy and increase GDP by 50 percent proved unsuccessful.

From his alleged pro-Israel bias, to his lust for securing lucrative deals with companies such as PetroSaudi, an oil company with links to the ruling Saudi royal family, many believe his heart wasn’t in the right place.

Someone with such a checkered past is always going to struggle to portray himself as a unifying figure of peace. As a key force behind the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, where his government manufactured evidence to justify an invasion, it’s no doubt his credentials as a peacemaker are questionable.

Blair is yet to comment on the claims he has pitched himself as a mediator between Madrid and Catalonia.

The situation in the northeast of Spain deteriorated over the weekend when police attacked voters casting their ballots in a referendum deemed illegal by the nation’s Supreme Court.

Spanish authorities failed in their attempts to stop the vote going ahead, with their actions only entrenching divisions. Catalan officials claim 90 percent of people voted for independence.

UKIP senior figure Ben Walker told the Daily Express the idea of Blair mediating over talks “meant the process would become as fair as a 17th-century witch trial.”

“Tony Blair is an EU fanatic who will do whatever Brussels wants – which is this case is to ignore the wishes of the people of Catalonia … He will take the side of the Spanish government and conventionally ignore the fact the Spanish Constitutional Court is not neutral and does the bidding of the government.”

According to Barcelona-based news outlet El Nacional, former Prime Minister David Cameron, who negotiated the 2014 Scottish independence referendum with then-First Minister Alex Salmond, could also be in the running as a mediator.

His failure to convince Brits to vote to remain in the European Union does little to inspire confidence in securing a compromise. Nor does his handling of the NATO intervention in Libya, which today finds itself divided between competing militias and factions.

Perhaps the Brits should sit this one out.

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/363732-Warmonger-Tony-Blair-thinks-he-should-mediate-Catalonia-independence-talks

Re: Should we bid Hamas farewell?

I will not criticise Hamas or our people in the Gaza Strip any further. They bore what no other humans could, including three wars in ten years waged by Israel and a suffocating economic siege imposed by the Israeli enemy and their brothers in Egypt who control the Rafah crossing and have prevented aid provided by countries around the world from entering. They have suffered a shortage of medicine, food and construction materials, while the treacherous PA – led by Mahmoud Abbas – cut the salaries of employees and did not pay the electricity bills to the occupation, thus cutting off the electricity in the Gaza Strip. This has caused the Gazans to live in pitch-black darkness, while the machines in hospitals and vital institutions were not powered.

The Gazans live a difficult life, and despite this, they have stood by their government, governed by Hamas, who they elected, even though the entire world stood against Hamas and accused it of terrorism. This was the card played by the coup-led government in Egypt in order to degrade Hamas and force it to adhere to its conditions for the reconciliation with Fatah, i.e. stepping aside and allowing the PA to govern the Gaza Strip.

Head of Gaza's political bureau Ismail Haniyeh meets Director of the Egyptian General Intelligence Directorate Khaled Fawzy in Gaza on 3 October 2017 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]Head of Gaza's political bureau Ismail Haniyeh meets Director of the Egyptian General Intelligence Directorate Khaled Fawzy in Gaza on 3 October 2017 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

Head of Gaza’s political bureau Ismail Haniyeh meets Director of the Egyptian General Intelligence Directorate Khaled Fawzy in Gaza on 3 October 2017 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

It is a well-known fact that Al-Sisi hates the Muslim Brotherhood and considered Hamas a part of the Brotherhood, thus explaining his hostility towards the movement and his efforts to intensify the siege imposed on Gaza. He did so to push the Gazans to revolt against Hamas and overthrow them, but when this did not happen, he resorted to the reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas and holding new elections through which Hamas can be overthrown. He resorted to this despite the past efforts to reconcile the two parties, including the attempts in Jeddah during the rule of the late King Abdullah, known as the Jeddah agreement, and the other attempts in Cairo and Qatar, both of which ended in failure.

What has changed that would lead to the success of the reconciliation, which is undoubtedly needed and desired by all? First, the international environment has completely changed. Furthermore, the success of the counter-revolutions and Hamas’ position on the Syrian revolution and its rejection of the war against its people has impacted it relations with Iran, the main supporter of the revolution. This has left Hamas alone to face the world’s plots against it.

Read: Netanyahu: No Palestinian unity at Israel’s ‘expense’

Moreover, the change in leadership, Ismail Haniyeh’s appointment as head of the political bureau, and Yahya Sinwar’s appointment as head of the movement in the Gaza Strip has caused a change in the movement’s policies. Hamas has also played on the conflict between Mahmoud Abbas and Muhamad Dahlan, seeming more open to him. He played a serious role in achieving this reconciliation, which was implemented yesterday with the arrival of PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah to the Gaza Strip and his receipt of power after Hamas dissolved the administrative committee through which it governed the Gaza Strip. Of course, control of the crossings will be handed over from Egypt to Israel, which is an Egyptian desire more than an Israeli one.

In my opinion, the most important point, which the reconciliation did not address, is Hamas’ military force, i.e. the Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ military wing. Of course the delusional Egyptian government and PA want to dismantle the Qassam Brigades and disarm it, which is also an Israel and American demand, as there is no way that the US and Israel would support the reconciliation efforts, as they claim, without a promise from Al-Sisi and Abbas to achieve this important achievement. They were not disappointed, for as soon as the Palestinian prime minister arrived in Gaza, Mahmoud Abbas immediately issued a statement saying he would not allow weapons to exist outside the authority of the state.

Herein lies the danger of the reconciliation and it raises questions about that the real purpose of it is to actually eliminate Hamas as a resistance movement and disarm it. This is what I fear.

Will eliminating the Qassam Brigades be so simple, when Israel’s army and equipment were unable to defeat it, thus prompting Israel to hand the task over to the Palestinians themselves so they can fight each other, thus causing a Palestinian-Palestinian war, similar to those in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Libya? Is this the new plan to get rid of the nation’s last form of resistance against the Israeli occupation? Will Hamas destroy itself with this reconciliation? These questions and more will be answered in the coming days. We will not bid Hamas farewell yet, but will say we hope to see you again soon.



Source Article from https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20171003-should-we-bid-hamas-farewell/#comment-3551480374

Keith Olbermann: The NRA Should Be Branded A Terrorist Organization

Keith Olbermann tore into the National Rifle Association for “enabling such massacres” as the one that took place in Las Vegas on Sunday night.

In his latest clip for GQ’s “The Resistance” series, the former MSNBC and ESPN journalist said the twisting of the Second Amendment’s meaning in recent decades has provided an excuse for why the NRA “is not branded for what is it — a terrorist organization.”

The Second Amendment was originally intended “to keep the federal government from taking away the right of each state to maintain its own militia,” said Olbermann.

But it has been transformed “into an excuse for why madmen of whatever heritage or political purpose cannot be stopped from carrying at least 10 long rifles into a hotel room in Las Vegas and setting up a sniper’s nest and killing people,” he added.

At least 59 people were killed and hundreds more injured on Sunday night when, from his 32nd-floor hotel room, 64-year-old Stephen Craig Paddock opened fire on a crowd attending the Route 91 Harvest Festival.

Olbermann also said it was “time to end the lies about the Second Amendment” and “time to end refusing to call mass murderers who do not have obvious political motives ‘terrorists.’”

“It is time to end the National Rifle Association,” he added.

Related:

For more news videos visit Yahoo View, available on iOS and Android.

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.

Source Article from https://www.yahoo.com/news/keith-olbermann-nra-branded-terrorist-082115418.html