Member Profile

Total number of comments: 19 (since 2016-07-19 18:09:28)


Showing comments 19 - 1

  • Did an Emirates-Israel alliance Help elect Trump more than Russia?
    • What democratic right Kim? What about millions of people living in "blue states" whose vote didn't really count due to the electoral college rules? And for the same reason, and the role money plays in our politics - one dollar, one vote - having a viable third party system is unimaginable . US is not a democracy in the sense of majority rule because of the way senators are elected and because of existence of electoral college. And in reality the situation is worse, as professor Cole is showing here; money and power plays and outsize role in elections. Poor US voters' only influence is to choose between two representatives of two corporate parties to rule them for the next four years in two minutes time spent in an election booth. No wonder we can never hit more than 60% of eligible voters voting in any election. People know, they have very little power in national scene. They may fare a little better in local politics however even there candidates must belong to one of the parties if they have any chance to be elected.

  • Russian campaign Interference looks like ISIL in Polarizing Techniques
    • The real news in this whole indictment thing for me is how gullible the masses of people are. People went to rallies organized by the trolls. Trolls organized rallies and counter rallies at the same time. And no one asked who the owner of FB pages are even though we are told that their English was faulty!
      I guess that should not be a surprise. Up to the last year of Obama's reign a staggering percent of people (I think it was up to 30%) believed that Obama was not born in US and/or that he was a secret Moslem.
      I guess, that is always has been the case, aside from nostalgia for a not so rosy past, masses vote for 2 minutes in a cubicle every four years and choose between candidates of two corporate parties the one to rule them for the next four years. The only solace they have is that they can throw the "bum" out in 4 years. That is the only thing that democracy means. And with Citizens United, our democracy better be called one $ one vote and cast even the pretense of one man, one vote.

  • Iran's Khamenei blames Early English Learning for Unrest, Bans Classes
    • You disregard a factor called cultural imperialism. USA has Hollywood, and Internet to propagate its cultural hegemony. Not just France, but small countries around the world see the need to defend their traditions and culture. Internet is not neutral, it is commercial. It is full of bad and misleading stuff and born. Speaking English makes access to all of this possible. The young minds are not developed to discriminate between good and bad. They need some protection.

  • Has Iranian regime repression Succeeded?
    • Thank you Juan for the historical insight. But, I have a sincere question. What does the word "regime" mean? Is it a system of government or a set of people (those who govern and their supporters), a word reserved for those who we don't like, so on. Why is that we use the word administration, government or if we want to single out the powerful we use words like the Establishment, elite, deep state but we never use the word regime when it comes to USA? It seems to me that there is a system of government in Iran. We should call it what it is; it is definitely more than Ayatollahs, or derogatorily speaking mullahs, so on.

  • How Iran's Protests could hit the Wider Middle East
    • The Iranian government should address the economic woes of the working class, lower middle classes and rural dwellers. It should open up its politics by freeing political prisoners esp. the leaders of the Green revolution. Iran is a far more democratic government than the Arab countries. It is also the only truly independent country in the region. Israel, KSA and US is out to get it. MBS said that he will bring the chaos to Iran. Iranian establishment should not aid the enemies by its own stupidity. It is only hastening its demise by proclaiming as Khamenei did that the protests were triggered by enemies. No, "it is the economy stupid." Any government that ignores demands of its populace and suppresses them is legit.
      I am not familiar with the Ahwaz situation. I would advise caution in taking what is written here on face value. Assertions like solidarity between Ragga and Ahwaz based on reports of a single organization, and at best is a very weak evidence.

  • Germany: Immediate Danger of Mideast War if Trump dumps Iran Deal
    • Let Jill Stein go del ! Don't you see the problem is not just that Hillary did not get elected. There are structural problems in the world and in this country that the two-party system cannot answer anymore. Both parties have have failed to address the fundamental issues and disruptions brought on by globalization. Period. Blaming Jill Stein or Sanders for the mess we are in, is like covering our head in order to escape from the reality. Those two and others should be at least thanked for trying new approaches to meet the demands of our time.
      I am sorry to say that those who are waiting for a democrat to win next election to win and swing country back to the center, will be deeply disappointed. So, get over Hillary's loss.

  • Was Ayatollah Khamenei right about Washington? Trump Reneges
    • Professor, you are at your best in this article!
      I guess, reneging on promises is part of US exceptionalism. Ask any native American tribe you wish. Correction to Farhang's comment: Israel, singled out Iran as the main enemy long in 1988 under the leadership of Peres not in 2003 after the invasion of Iraq. In fact, the fictitious Iran nuclear weapon hasbara attests to the power of Israeli lobby all over the Western World, that is believe whatever fake news Israel makes up without questioning it.

  • Giraldi Controversy: No, US wars in Mideast are not for Israel Lobby
    • I wonder how many people commenting here have actually read Giraldi's essay. He is careful to distinguish between zionists and Jews. He doesn't say that zionists were behind all US wars. In fact, Cheney and Rumsfield were successful in going to war in Iraq because zionists were for it. Imagine if they could have done it if the Lobby was against it.
      I agree with PB. The author this is Zionism lite in disguise. In fact, one of their hallmarks is to claim they are all powerful but then turn around and feign weakness as the situation demands. Pure has area.

    • This article has so many flaws that one doesn't know where to begin with. No, Israel and its lobby are not the only ones determining US policy in Middle East. There are areas like Yemen or Libya where the lobby has no or little interest. Where lobby's influence is decisive is in areas of interest to Israel: Palestinians, occupation, Syria, Iran and Iraq for example.
      May be Chomskite argument that alignment of US interests with Israel is what drives US policy could be argued back in 70's and 80's but after seeing Adelsons and Sabans buying the whole political establishment on the both sides of the aisle, and servility of Congress to AIPAC one should be really naive to believe that it is the defense industry that drives US policy. The Lobby opposed JCPOA and it looks like it will succeed in wrecking it.
      Of course US cares about Palestinians. But not for the sake of Palestinians, it is for the Arab and Middle Eastern street. US has sustained tremendous damage to its image for its one sided approach to the conflict.

  • Trump blasts Iran for backing Syria, ignores Russia, Praises Saudis
    • Professor this is a far better opinion piece than the one you wrote a week ago giving advice to the medieval regime of KSA. I still think that Iran's giving up its nuclear program without security guarantees ( say Russia and China committing themselves to defend her in an invasion) was sheer stupidity. Short sighted merchant class and Westernized youth who pushed for sanctions relief never have understood the nature of Imperialism. They have short memories. The World is about who dominates whom. Europe can't stand up to US power; or Iran is not worth standing up to a giant superpower.

  • Trump plots to keep Palestinians Stateless forever
    • In terms of settlements, one should add the role of American money. Many individuals and organizations in US some of them tax exempt fund settlements. Up to 70,000 of settlers are Americans who have immigrated. With all those UZI wielding American settlers, I can't help to be reminded of the cowboy movies. In fact, the West Bank is the American wild west. To say otherwise is to delude oneself. America and Israel are the same, joined at the hip. Trump is the true face of America. No pretense, no hypocrisy like previous administrations pretending that they are unhappy with occupation but doing everything they can to enable the occupation. As Khamanei said, we should be grateful to Trump for showing the true face of America!

  • The Iranian Connection in the Age of Trump
    • If Iranians had a single nuke, we would not have this discussion. I hope they know how to stop aggression and a possible invasion. Its leadership is foolish. Don't seem to know that US has no respect for International
      agreements. And this in a country in which US instigated a coup and set up a puppet government for quarter of century.

  • Why the UN Resolution on Israeli Squatting didn't Go Far Enough
    • I agree that the UN resolution did not go far enough but United Nations has a great burden on its shoulders as the party in large part responsible for the plight of Pal's.. It gave more than half of Palestine to newly arrived colonizers in 1947. And the newly created country ethnically cleansed the original inhabitants from most of the the other 50% of the land. Now it wants to squeeze out Palestinians from the remaining 22% of the original Palestine and finish the job. Gentlemen, Israel was a settler colonial state right from the beginning. I remember prime minister Begin in a moment of candor saying: " what settlers? we are all settlers."
      P.S. I should correct myself. When I said finish the job, I meant finish with Palestinians. Authentic Zionists speak of ancient Israel extending to Euphrates. It could be that we are are witnessing only phase one of the colonial project!!

  • Fidel Castro's Top Moments in the Middle East
    • One wonders if Cuba could survive being revolutionary
      without being a closed and authoritarian. Allende's example can be multiplied; whenever a revolution was democratic, US imperialists would overthrow it. This lesson has not gone unnoticed by third world peoples and the Cuban people who is still by and large support the Revolution. So, let's put things in perspective.

  • The Hatred that Trump's Lies will Leave Behind
    • Juan, can you site evidence that it was Trump supporters that burned a mosque and attacked Muslims and Sikhs? Have the arrested the suspects and have they been convicted or confessed to being Trump supporters?

  • Save America from Trump to fix America, or, Did your Mother Drop you on Your Head?
    • Let it all out Juan. I think one of the problems of the intellectuals on the left in contemporary times is weakness in moral fiber. The intellectual of Gramsci type stands on principles, is responsible towards his people , the working class and poor He takes his allegiance to truth seriously. He is the kind that goes to Spain to fight for freedom. We need a Hippocratic oath from intellectuals: Stand up for your principles and fight for them.
      I will not vote for Clinton. All of the things that you say about her is true. But the thing that offends and insults me most iss what she has said in leaked emails: one must have a public and also a private position on issues. How can one tolerate such a Machiavellian person, is beyond me. We know Trump is a forgetful liar, but I can't see how you can vote for her even with you nose held tight.
      If Trump wins, we will stand up for our principles and oppose him. That is only if we feel that we didn't compromise and vote for Hillary. For you need strong and moral character now to prepare you for the hard times of future

  • US Goes to War with Houthis in Yemen (Openly)
    • More fundamental question for me is what does American ships were doing in Red Sea or for in general anywhere? We question the 800 + land bases that US has around the world but I haven't heard anyone talking about the role of US Navy. Are they fighting imaginary pirates? What do they do in Persian Gulf ? Their posture is definitely offensive. I know they are protecting the vassal states in Persian gulf but why? BTW it costs more than 4 billion just to maintain the 4th fleet in Persian Gulf. (For comparison the federal budget for retraining workers is about 4 billion dollars. And we all know how important is the issue of retraining workers with outsourced jobs in this election cycle is. )

  • Are the Muslim Khans better Americans than Donald Trump?
    • Professor, I do not condone Trump's words or deeds. But I have to issues with your piece.
      1- You dismiss his "discourse" as being at the level of 5-year old. This kind of insulting style ( a la Elizabeth Warren) is self defeating and not helpful. Not everyone can talk like high-minded college educated Americans.
      2 - You do not spend enough ink on criticizing Democrats for using militaristic/ patriotic messages undergirding Khan's speech. As a Muslim wrote in Guardian, you don't have to prove your patriotism by participating in misguided, I say imperialistic, wars.

  • Long Knives in Ankara: Victorious Erdogan begins Purge of Judiciary, Army
    • It is not elitist nor European centric to say that in order for democracy to flourish you need a civil society with strong judicial institutions and robust and prosperous middle class. As noted, those who came to street were not chanting pro democracy slogans but Islamist ones. There is a danger here. Let me cite two examples. In Iranian revolution, part of the population that demonstrated against Shah later become backbone of repression and oppression. In Egypt mostly secular masses supported the coup which was fascistic in many respects. Yes, military coups are bad - although not all are as bloody as Egypts's but please do not praise uncritically the "masses" who throng to streets to demonstrate. These masses have the potential to become fanatic mobs at a later stage. (Yes, I am critical of uninformed spontaneity. That is why I am afraid of Trumpism.)
      Turkey has a flourishing middle class, but not strong enough to withstand to a demagogue of Ottoman Islamist of Erdogan who has backing of the vast rural areas of Anatolia and the petty bourgeois of Bazaar.

Showing comments 19 - 1