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Total number of comments: 10 (since 2013-11-28 16:32:49)

michaelj72

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  • Top Ten Implications of the Damascus Bombing
    • really, one can hardly seriously consider this a civil war - with the likes of the US, UK, other nato players and the reactionary gulf states/absolutist monarchists of saudi arabia and oman all sending in hundreds of millions in arms, equipment, fighters, supplying intelliegence, and training the so-called rebels of the not so 'free syrian army', a patsy if ever there was one - and that's not even to mention turkey's huge hand in all this. if they closed their borders completely, there would likely be no 'civil war' in syria.

      and to make it clear, i have no sympathy for the assad regime, a bunch of war criminals to be sure but I absolutley refuse to jump on this neo-con and liberal western pro-war bandwagon and militarize yet another conflict in the middle east, it's just outrageous.

      I'm with the arab spring and the non-violent protestors, and the many internal parties who refuse to accept a militarization of this internal conflict/power struggle

  • McCain: Bomb Syria; But Iraq and Russia oppose Intervention
    • Juan, I think you hit the nail on the head with this statement: "Only a peaceful movement could allay the fears of the Christians, Allawis and moderate Sunnis, about what kind of regime would come to power after the fall of the Baath."

      I personally have a lot of faith in non-violent and mostly peaceful movements as presenting the best alternative/s to the present regimes that rule the region - almost all of which use a mixture of brute force combined with fear, corruption, active repression, and secret police state tactics to preserve their power.
      The peaceful successes in tunisia and egypt (even considering how limited they are. but these things take time.....) clearly point the way forward in the future for the region.

      imagine what would have happened in india had gandhi and his followers resorted to violence and guerilla tactics against the british, they could never had gained the bipartisan sympathies of the millions they did nor rouse the world to support their independence movement. I think many modern day people are very skeptical, and rightly so, of any talk of quick solutions to complex, real political and social problems by resorting force and violence....which in general only beget more violence, and often have unintended historical and regional consequences that go well beyond any one nation's borders....

  • Protesters Brave Live Crackdowns in Syria, Yemen, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia
    • as of tonight, Saleh refuses to sign the agreement

      "The Yemeni president has refused to sign a Gulf Arab-led agreement to give up power in exchange for legal immunity, sources say..."
      link to english.aljazeera.net

      and the US and NATO have reportedly killed Gaddafi's youngest son and three of his grandchildren. this is part of a no fly zone and protection of civilians?
      link to english.aljazeera.net

      correct me if I am wrong, but attempted/actual assassination of any foreign leader/s is still against US federal law (unless that was changed under king george), if not against international law. & no matter what any UN resolution or US president or NATO leader or general says it's immoral and unethical...

  • OSC: Yemeni Tribes, Movements, Youth, Organizations Decry Regime's 'Bloody Massacres'
    • thanks for this report, Juan from all these sources....

      I am so amazed, and moved, too that the protestors have remained largely so peaceful, it is very inspiring.

  • 24 Dead in Fresh Yemen Violent Repression
    • I don't hear much talk in the US press or elsewhere about this sort of indiscriminate and intentional fire on civilian being carried out by Ali Abdullah Saleh as being "a war crime that he may well end up being tried for at the Hague."

      I mean, just from what I have read here, through reuters, on al jazeera, and from googling various sources under news for 'yemen', over the last few weeks or so there must be by now hundreds and hundreds of deaths plus thousands of these poor people wounded....I haven't seen any new services or websites either that are keeping track of all this or making counts/noting sources, as some anti-war websites did for iraq etc. Do you know of any, Juan?

  • Answer to Glenn Greenwald
    • oh my goodness I am always back and forth on this issue, like i haven't been for a long while. I read Juan and largely agree with him, then read Digby and see her points, then read what a good number of third world leaders in latin america, where I live, are saying and agree with them. then i read Richard Falk and agree with him and over at al jazeera there are quite a good number of points of view being presented, many of them against the war and some in favor.

      I don't like to get into legalistic interpretations either so I rather leave those aside except to say that the US hasn't entered into a congressionally sanctioned war since WWII. and that says a lot right there about how failed our so called democracy is. and even if the present congress approves this one after sixty days what does that really mean in the current state of the Nation which for all intents and purposes is an oligarchy of the rich and powerful? Those guys on capitol hill don't represent any of my interests nor do they represent the interests of the people of Libya or Yemen or Egypt when they make all their momentous decisions to intervene this way or that, or say this and that etc. The elites are always the ones who make these international decisions which then costs hundreds of billions and disrupt the lives of millions of people. To me almost all these post WWII wars and semi-wars and interventions fought by the US have clearly been wars for one Reason of State or another or an Imperial design or a conglomeration of international economic-politico interests, of Empire.

      I think the bar has to be pretty darn high for me to even condone this kind of violence, even if it purportedly is going to prevent further bloodshed (and it does seem that some of the air strikes have prevented some massacres or massive civilian casualties, so there we go again...). and also the bar is high to even consider that the US is entering into an international conflict where it will do some good - why? because the historical record is just absolutely dismal! It's one ruined nation after another, not to mention the eventual blowback. US absolute national interests are not at stake here nor is it facing imminent attack. nor is NATO either. In fact, Gates himself was talking like that just several weeks ago. One can always discuss again the authority of the security council to even take such actions....whether it's moral and ethical to intervene in the internal affairs and start air strikes on another sovereign nation. These are not small matters. I like what Uruguayan President José Mujica said, "...This business of saving lives by bombing is an inexplicable contradiction."

      so to me there are many arguments against the intervention and the bar has to be extremely high for me to condone any military action by the US as being "humanitarian" given the historical record, which to me is pretty darn clear.

      Still, I as I said, I am back and forth because I do want to get rid of Qaddafi and I do want to see this Arab-moslem liberation movement succeed throughout the whole region - hell, I've been waiting for this for 30 years, and am now cheering it on from Morocco to Yemen and Bahrain. I can't wait for it in saudi arabia and syria. but I am also personally a rather peaceful person so the use of any violence is questionable and troublesome....

  • Million-Person March Planned as Elbaradei made Opposition Leader
    • thanks for another interesting and informative article, Juan. I read you almost every day.

      the quote by the woman at the end reminded me of a great one by gandhi, if I may...

      "First, they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win." - Mahatma Gandhi

  • Senate Repeal of DADT in Global Context
    • thanks for the excellent summary of the world wide situation - I would mention one thing that you missed, as I live here, and that it that the PRD the left wing party that rules Mexico City has this March allowed gay marriage and that the Supreme Court of mexico, in a 9-3 decision (imagine that kind of 'pro-gay' stance with the US supremes. impossible!) ruled that same sex marriages are consitutional and all other states in the country would have to recognize the validity of any gay marriage in Mexico City. they further ruled in August favor of gay adoption by same-sex couples by a vote of 9-2... saying that to do otherwise is clearly discriminatory. in other words, macho Mexico is more liberal than even the US - some change in the 18 years I've lived here, proud to say! The same sex marriage in Mexico City includes/extends the right to adopt children, to jointly apply for bank loans, to inherit wealth and to be covered by their spouses' insurance policies.

  • Lawsuit over Drones in Pakistan forces CIA Station Chief to Flee
    • i totally agree with Juan's assessment.

      interesting article here:
      link to wired.com

      especially where it says:

      "....Then there’s the question of whether the strikes are legal. Obama administration claims that the September 2001 congressional Authorization to Use Military Force in retaliation for 9/11 provides all the legal protection necessary for the strikes. Some lawyers and law professors, by contrast, think that the drones’ remote pilots could eventually get hauled before a war-crimes tribunal..."

      i consider all this to be war crimes. killing people without charges, arrest, trial and being found guilt of any actual crimes. and what does it mean when the newspapers all quote these as being "militants" like this somehow justifies these actions - it's murder pure and simple.

  • Top Ten Questions about Chile Mine Collapse: Was it Nixon-Kissinger's Fault?
    • I asked myself many of the same questions, which as you correctly noted were never asked. but as jeffrey stewart so succinctly pointed out, even to ask or raise the question/s are very nearly impossible given the present capitalist and materialist driven system, which automatically considers such line of questioning as 'radical' and 'illegitimate' and so ignores them, or even better still as Orwell and Huxley would have pointed out, these kind of questions can't even be raised, because they don't even arise in the minds of not only the mainstream propaganda i mean mainstream media, but even in the minds of most people - so conditioned are we under the present materialist/capitalist regime, or as a good neo-freudian psychoanalyst might say, there's an 'automatic control system' in place which is so extensive and so pervasive that certain material (meaning these kinds of questions) generally can't even rise into the minds of most people. least of all the Elites, whose interests are/would be directly threatened by them - so when they are raised, those people that raise them are marginalized and/or ignored in capitalist societies, or else punished and imprisoned in more directly tyrannical regimes/nations.....

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