Rather like the good (!) arbitrator, doctor, judge, police, or social worker who steps in to resolve an issue once, I’d like not to again feel compelled to revisit this workout for the Middle East Conflict.
From the Awesome Conversation
Iran’s expansionist ambitions, religious and spatial, and its relations with the authoritarian hypocrisies of China and Russia doubtlessly drove the Arab world into Israeli alliance as made possible by western flexibility and Israeli supremacy in security technologies internal and external. Two games potentially in play: firm alliances for inevitable war (choose sides!); encourage the Cold War habituated PLO/PA and the post-Soviet Islamist Hamas to embark on their own transformation in light of their both lost and losing positions, for by the motion or progress known to history, both have stayed in the same ideological or political space for too long.
The Middle East Conflict has been always about Power — Medieval or Modern — Across Time and never truly about real estate, the latter a myth for mobs. The Fatah and Hamas sponsors have long endorsed criminal absolutism, would that some Palestinians would wake up and respond appropriately to their own duping exploitation.
Former President Trump himself knew all about mobs , which partially accounts for why he was as he was. His world was black and white, Hobbesian, zero sum and not a space for political clarity, honesty, or vision. Unfortunately, Biden, the much better man, appears to be looking backward himself and inclined to replay some aspects of the Obama Era experience (as with the renewal of the JCPOA) rather than move forward with the radical prospect of expecting from the Palestinians courage, independence, and integrity in their own right and from the best of themselves rather than the unscrupulous worst.
For deep conservatives in Israel and elsewhere, the presence of the Palestinians tends to fade away behind defensive considerations coupled with ambitions that make the Palestinian population . . . a bothersome “externality” to the revival of a romanticized ancient Jewish past. That’s not going to work either.
Staying locked in place in Orwellian fashion (in which case, someone like myself will be chatyping here in about the same way 75 years from now) may work (if any have the patience for it); war might work, but considering the “East v West” alliances involved, what would contain it? Best bet: encouraging an appropriate and honest sea change across the Palestinian campus, and while that may be difficult to approach — i.e., the idea that they really have been duped and exploited for more than 73 years by those most claiming to defend them — not by the Jews, Israelis, or the West, which is true — it’s the only practical and inherently achievable, good, and helpful adjustment in sight.
Shorthand for the above: the Palestinians were birthed on the wrong side of history and this is a good time, so motivated by pain and threat as facilitated by their own camps for the Palestinians to bravely call history — their own true history — back into open review against all post-WWII and Soviet / post-Soviet Era dogma and propaganda.
With little ado and much copy-and-paste, I’ve again engaged the narrative — and truth — about the “Middle East Conflict” and the idea that the Palestinian leadership has over time served other than the Palestinians.
As mentioned in previous posts, any Palestinian today may look up “Palestinian, corruption” or “Palestinian, political repression” with a simple search request.
The argument for Palestinians is for the refuge of a Palestinian state.
Unfortunately, the Palestinian governments remain proxies to Moscow and Tehran and, through both, corrupt and suffocating in the cause of political absolutism. The Palestinians will not find their freedom through Israel but through loss of faith in the PLO/PA and Hamas as their representatives.
Some background on East Jerusalem issues:
Palestinians will be free (“from the river to the sea”) when those who claim most to represent them — while effectively neglecting and plundering them by turns — are finished in the eyes of the Palestinians themselves.
The Palestinians are the victims of the same forces that sustain Putin, Assad, and Khamenei. While the deflections may be toward “The Jews” and western political will and technology, the simple fact is that the Syrians have only to look at the financially or morally failed states — dictatorships — associated with Soviet Era circles of control and regions of influence. Of the choices given by Yassin Swehat, I would choose for the PLO/PA and Hamas “ideological contortions” as they continue to serve the phantoms of the Soviet more than 30 years after the death of the same.
Regarding the west’s moral failures involving Moscow and the Syrian Tragedy: fear of direct nuclear exchange has probably been part of it; global warming and displacement without financial or political mechanisms in place beyond the shaping of migrant policies has certainly been part of it — as has the reflexively controlled turn toward proto-fascist New Nationalism in some democracy-degraded EU/NATO states (Hungary and Turkey, foremost; Poland and Italy mumbling along); finally, perhaps especially in the middle east, “disinformation” must be considered poison and lazily “missed information” something of its antidote. Arabs and Jews quick to come to their feet and raise their fists in anti-western solidarity often choose not to acknowledge authentically genocidal wars against the “Jewish State” nor look into the differing situations for enfranchised Israeli Arabs and those who would reject Israeli governance or influence at all costs nor, in the end, comb over the history of anti-Semitic / anti-Zionist incitements and the long history of horrific acts of terrorism associated with them.
Everyone, even Israel, may be with the Palestinians this time but not the once KGB-guided PLO/PA (still) and Iran’s proxy Hamas. The same forces in Moscow and Tehran that produced them have sustained Assad the Butcher and other miserable post-Soviet “leaders” (Venezuela’s worth a look) around the world.
I absolutely support democracy, freedom, and rule of law for the Palestinians, and no less for them than any living in the west.
How is it then that Palestinians should be subject to PLO/PA and Hamas corruption, lies, and repression without end?
And how much of the world’s information (in English) should be withheld from Palestinians by evidently more powerful Palestinians (for their own good)?
Why shouldn’t Palestinians enjoy the privileges attending “free and fair elections” with plenty of responsibly vetted, cogent, and reliable information (on par with the best investigative journalism published anywhere else in the free world) with which to make political policy and representation decisions in their own right?
Shouldn’t Palestinians be able to evaluate for themselves their near state relationships with Moscow and Tehran?
Is there any reason for Palestinians not enjoying the benefits of democratic, liberal, and modern responsible and responsive governance subject to impartial internal auditing?
Or do the same need to be subject somehow to other less modern, less “western”, less universal, and less savory principles?
(The statement responded to essentially declared freedom a universal right, irreducible and recognizable).
Not so strangely, I agree. However, not all who are powerful agree, and some in charge of substantial communities, from Beijing to Gaza City, seem to believe their people need more authoritarian control and guidance — backed by repressive measures and violence — than others elsewhere, especially in the open societies of the Wild West. What is it about Palestinian Freedom that Palestinian leaders fear?
Putin, Assad, and Khamenei — I have their pictures in one place: https://conflict-backchannels.com/…/syria-the-horror-2011/ — have cut adrift the conventions of medieval absolutism. Their worlds — and the worlds attached to them! — should be fading behind us, and “us” includes the Palestinians.
For Iran — https://www.reuters.com/investigates/iran/#article/part1 — the fig leaf’s slipping, and that will be a very good thing for the Palestinians who may be — or will be — free to question the dogma that has attended their existence — their very breathing in situ, in fact — for more than 73 years.
The medieval competition between monarchies would seem about finished by World War I and made additionally irrelevant by the rise of an angry and industrialized Nazi Germany and its ravages through World War II (most of Europe’s monarchies have become constitutional enterprises), and yet Stalinism, ordinary dictatorship, and brutal theocracy have persisted into first fifth of the 21st Century. Along the way, the Soviet Union courted and used Arab power plus the Palestinian Refugees of 1948 to goad and block the expansion of western liberalism, democracy, and rule of law. When presented the choice between supporting the “Arab Spring” in Syria in 2011 or backing a dictator, Putin chose the dictator — and for himself on the way into power, a most manipulative and feudal-medieval Russian revanche.
While Assad’s slaughter drove down Syria’s population by 5 million between 2011 and 2018, the Palestinians, who had been handled since 1948 by an array of “revolutionary” personalities and organizations, were pinned in place, and eventually kept so by Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria, each of which today maintains special-status Palestinian camps. While each “Arab war” against Israel has been lost, the Palestinians have not been treated as normal refugees, dispersed, resettled, or settled in place but rather meanly kept intellectually clouded with anger and incitements and weaponized for war against the “Zionist entity”. That strategy now regularly erupts in acts of terror or acts of war, drawing to Palestinians Israel’s defense operations that while securing Israel create the world’s most awful memories for Palestinians. The strategy works some on the post-Soviet Communist Far Out Left, but as western governments do their homework — and perhaps independent Palestinians will too — the “strategy” fails reliably.
The lies — the poison slipped into ears for decades — will eventually fail too.
As the “Greatest Generation” (WWII) has largely passed away in the United States and the liberal professoriate has grown lax with the acceptance of all stances and thought, however absurd, the Palestinians have found themselves in the pleasant but miserable condition of getting themselves killed by way of delusional encouragements and bitter incitements cooked up by their own medieval leaders.
I believe modern Palestinians wish to live modern lives but do not have modern leaders who would serve them first and with integrity before serving themselves and their relationships elsewhere.
After the Palestinian Authority’s Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki accused Israel of committing war crimes and deliberately massacring children in their sleep, Israel’s ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan walked out of the General Assembly meeting in protest of the minister’s charged statements, according to Israeli media reports.
Jerusalem Post Staff. “Israel’s ambassador to UN Erdan walks out of General Assembly meeting.” The Jerusalem Post, May 20, 2021.
Recommended Search Strings
Hamas, anti-Semitism Hamas, child soldiers Hamas, corruption Hamas, human shields Hamas, political repression
Few know how to exploit and harm the general Palestinian population quite like Iran’s shills for Islam.
Palestinian Authority, anti-Semitism Palestinian Authority, corruption Palestinian Authority, democracy Palestinian Authority, human rights Palestinian Authority, incitement Palestinian Authority, KGB Palestinian Authority, political repression
Again, more broadly, no one brings more harm to the Palestinian Refugees of 1948 and subsequent wars quite like those who insist on representing them while making great claims belied by abuse, intimidation, kleptocracy, medieval methods of political control, and their own general political failure.
Palestinians deserve better!
Anyone would who would wish to be a part of the modern secure, vibrant, and working world.
“Hamas can’t hide anymore. That’s a great achievement for Israel,” he said in a televised address. “We eliminated an important part of Hamas’s and Islamic Jihad’s command echelon. And whoever was not killed, knows today that our long arm can reach him anywhere, above ground or underground.”
Among the slashed and burnt of The Great Liar’s One-Term Presidency, John Bolton stands out for greater backbone, discretion, experience, and integrity.
I believe Bolton when he suggests he leveraged his experience in national security to participate in the Trump Administration in order to produce his — not Trump’s — brand of guidance. As Trump required greater sycophancy, Bolton would also leave the malignant narcissist’s den.
The Republican Party, once the Party of the visionary Abraham Lincoln, has in the 20th Century seen equally embarrassing and shamefully self-centered days. That has become something for critically reasoning and independent Americans to take into consideration as the West with its ideas about compassion, freedom, goodness, and real human productivity faces an anachronistic, feudal, and implacable enemy in Moscow and, in post-Cold War association with it, Beijing and Tehran as well.
Tehran, worn by its own conflict-promoting behaviors over time and by sanctions, has shown no signs of retreat in relation to its nuclear missile and warhead programs nor its will, repeated with dulling frequency, to see Israel and the west destroyed for its own marauding and politically absolute ends. Where has the Republican Party (with its increasingly familiar white supremacist attachments) really stood on the Moscow-Tehran relationship? Where has it stood with regard to the rise of the proto-fascist New Nationalism in the United States as well as within NATO (have a look into authoritarian and feudal urges in Hungary, Italy, Poland, and Turkey)?
Here is a junction in time in which the United States, once leader of the free world — the modern open democratic world, either stands firm against politically retrograde but technologically sophisticated states or slips backward itself into some system of immense power and wealth lording over a hapless constituency whose political voice becomes so much noise to those working the levers for their own enrichment according to class and degrees of ruthlessness.
The Right x American-Israeli Right appears to be threatening the Left x American-Israeli Left with claims of a nuclear peace accord revival — return to Kerry’s pink tie escapade and a massive drug deal of a bribe — when, in BackChannels estimation, those days are gone forever. Russia has mumbled through its bullying in Crimea and destruction in Syria; Tehran has never done other than despoil its environment and disappoint its politically suffocated (and once modern) constituency.
From the Awesome Conversation
Given the Moscow-Tehran post-Soviet nexus and Tehran’s aggression via IRGC directly (Syria) and proxies (e.g., Houthi insurgents, Yemen; Hezbollah, worldwide), I’d suggest not doing the $1B drug deal again. Hold the west’s position in the ME; repair the Atlantic Alliance (!); and leverage China — Tehran’s oil buyer — off the extremist-supporting tack.
As if I ruled the world . . . .
The post’s a feel-good made possible by Biden’s page on FB – why not send a note across the virtual hall now that all has been reduced to plain text e- communications? So done although one may ask where such a “missive” really lands — is there a virtual cookie jar for FB or other e-notes to the President? 🙂
Well, gosh golly — watch plumes of dust rising into the air over the neighboring state’s military exercises, report it, and make a decision about the enemies true near intentions.
Can’t do that?
Not enough to go on?
Intelligence people use terms like “estimate” and “mosaic” to describe both the uncertainty of perception and the many pieces needed to venture a guess — a good one, so one hopes — about what’s happening in the world as they see it displayed before their own eyes.
From the Awesome Conversation
This editor’s response to the continuing partisan presentation of political history and present states of affairs –>
Our politicians need to be working issues rather than demonizing one another.
The Brietbart piece makes clear that the conveyance of “intelligence” is often ambiguous and subject to broader analysis. Biden was apparently not happy with what he saw, and the Egyptian effort at deception would have in those years been taken as par for the Arab course in its enmity with Israel.
Times have changed. Moscow backing Tehran (and Damascus) has helped pushed the Sunni Arab world westward for modernization as well as security.
Americans and Israelis should know who their enemies are as well as persons or states neither positioned for nor temperamentally fit for enmity. Overall, Israel has some complicated trade relationships, including with China who purchases oil from Tehran in support of both its belligerence and existence (China has been notoriously insensitive to the character of many of its trading partners). Here’s a part of the deal going between China and Iran — https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/09/05/chinas-great-game-in-iran/ (9/5/2020).
President Trump, now in his lame duck phase, has most definitely lost his bid for a second term. More or less, he lost his race on character, essentially driving voters out of the Republican ranks to ensure his losing.
In the United States, we have experienced a period of brutal polarization driven by the absence of critical research and reasoning skills in much of the population, disinformation from foreign interlopers (look up “Internet Research Agency” as an example), and plain old hyped up Party-invented agitation and propaganda. With Trump’s now unquestionable loss of a second term, it may be time to pack away the kit of passionate but largely errant assumptions and beliefs about American and, in general, western conservatives and liberals and have a fresh look instead (and again together) at real issues stemming from the illiberal character and greed of the enemies of the west.
With two critical Iranian leaders assassinated — Qasem Soleimani and Mohsen Fakhrizadeh — and an American President determined to blunt the tip of the spear aimed against the west, the prospect for “fireworks” appears that much closer. Ever big on packing the Big Picture into a small space, I’ve done that here with ramble and signal but not chaos. Old Communist and Islamist politics persist in the latest states of affairs although the old Communists have produced breathtakingly wealthy elites and the chief among Islamists has been long known as a thief enriched by the plundering of ordinary Iranians.
From the Awesome Conversation
Beijing, Moscow, and Tehran represent an anti-western alliance committed to political absolutism by all and any means necessary. At least two of the three, Moscow and Tehran, represent also kleptocracy (see Reuters’ “Assets of the Ayatollah”) or mafia-type power (reference Ben Judah or Luke Harding), and together they keep the west bothered. Tehran, in malign narcissistic fashion, has covered its own crimes with deflections and dogma–it’s not strength that propels its fantasies of nuclear annihilation but regime weakness expressed through medieval fantasy. The clinical, dispassionate, and modern and prudent west may be building down Tehran’s capability, confidence, and coordination for aggression.
The old “Red-Green Alliance” is in the mix too with some persistent communist cant woven into the Houthi challenge in Yemen. The World Peace Council persists — as do graduates of Patrice Lamumba University — and the pack may view Tehran as an alley in thuggish political fashion. More important than political dogma: an heroic image to be created by marching forward into glorious past while holding each fantasy in place by main force.
Stated by Trita Parsi in 2017 (yes, just a quick look-see on my part): “Another emerging threat comes from Iran’s domestic politics. Presidential elections next month may put Iran’s foreign policy back into the hands of the country’s hard-liners, who, much like Mr. Trump, define their country in opposition to the world” (“The Coming Crisis With Iran”, The New York Times, April 20, 2017).
“Malignant Narcissism” begins with “Narcissistic Mortification”, i.e., the humiliation of the “Great Leader” (somewhere in childhood). Why everyone else has to be made a part of the compensation (measured by the Great One’s estimation of his own “Narcissistic Supply”), I’ve no idea but that the worst of the worst needs must have both an adoring audience and a horrified one.
It may be a taste of poison on the sophisticated tips of the arrows developing in radically different kinds of quivers.
One bullet point from the list included in the Defense One article:
In 2015, then-president of the Academy of Military Medical Sciences He Fuchu (贺福初) argued that biotechnology will become the new “strategic commanding heights” of national defense, from biomaterials to “brain control” weapons. Maj. Gen. He has since become the vice president of the Academy of Military Sciences, which leads China’s military science enterprise.
What New Demons are these of formerly great Dynasties?
Totalitarian genius cannot be but evil.
Drone Bomb Swarms?
From The Jerusalem Post piece:
The greatest threat confronting the US and Israel may be swarms of drones armed with chemical weapons released by Iran or ISIS, an ex-CIA official has told The Jerusalem Post.The warning takes on greater meaning following a call on January 28 by ISIS’s new leader, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Quraishi, to direct greater attention to attacking Israel and Jews, including using chemical weapons.
In relation to the latter piece, attack have been already thwarted but with the details withheld by the CIA.