The different are now targets of hate

The different are now targets of hate

Dilip Bobb

In his recently released book, Jimmy the Terrorist, author Omair Ahmad takes a hard, uncomfortable look at how religion, alienation, poverty and the struggle for communal dominance impacts on the social fabric of a small town in India. It is a work of fiction but disturbingly real. By the end, it’s not clear who Jamaal (Jimmy) really is, a terrorist or a nationalist, victim or criminal, he could fit any of those descriptions. For all its local roots, flavor and issues, it is very much a microcosm of the political, religious and social churning taking place in India. At its heart is a contemporary reality: the subterranean layers of intolerance, growing use of the Biblical exhortation of ‘an eye for an eye,’ and the subliminal urge of a majority community to keep the minority in its place, indeed, teach it a lesson from time to time to ensure that. We have seen enough examples of that, starting with the bloody birth of India’s independence to Gujarat in 2002, but now, it’s taken on a more sinister form.

What is unfurling before us each day now, are the contours of the conspiracy that point to ‘saffron terror’, a neologism which has entered public debate in India thanks to people like Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh. What the anti-terror probe, started ironically by Hemant Karkare, the police official who died in the worst act of terror on Indian soil, now enshrined as 26/11, has exposed, is how a network of Hindu fundamentalists planned and executed a series of bomb blasts across India that were originally attributed to Muslim groups.In a knee-jerk, face-saving reaction, local police arrested a number of Muslims, accused them of the plots, and threw them in jail. However restricted the number of Hindu extremists in the network, it is a worrying enough development. Terrorism is terrorism, whether of the Islamic variety or the newer Hindutva one, which is more alarming in terms of its impact on India’s socio-cultural fabric. It has become a cliché now, but the shop-worn quote about “one man’s terrorist being another’s freedom fighter” is starting to blur the lines between the purpose of terrorism, which is to terrorise, and acts that are committed in the garb of patriotism, and the greater good.Home Minister P Chidambaram gave clear warning last year when he told a meeting of top police officers from across the country that: “There is no let-up in the attempts to radicalise young men and women in India.Besides, there is the recently uncovered phenomenon of saffron terrorism that has been implicated in many bomb blasts of the past.” That development has also revived another label: ‘Nationalist terrorism.’ Basically, it is a form of terrorism motivated by nationalism.As with the concept of terrorism itself, the term “nationalist terrorism” and its application are highly contentious issues.What types of violence are acceptable and its justification are eminently debatable but in the end, it boils down to perpetrators believing they are “freedom fighters,” engaged in a valid but asymmetric war. ETA in Spain, the IRA in Ireland and the Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka are prime examples. Pakistan, the prime exporter of terror, uses another convenient phrase to describe them: ‘Non State Actors’. The use of religion to propagate violence is as old as history itself but what we are witnessing now, and not just in India, is a sharp spike in intolerance.Globally, nationalists in many countries, post-financial meltdown, see immigration as a threat to the prosperity of the native population.We have seen the results of that in recent government policies in France and other European countries, as well as increasingly, in America. In today’s globalised world, the miracle of communications has removed barriers of distance, language, and culture.This ideally should mean that we have become more accustomed to other religions and other races. Unfortunately, the opposite has happened. In a world that has shrunk, intolerance has begun to play a larger role.Denmark, one of the most tolerant countries in the world, has turned inwards thanks to one incident, the cartoon controversy, and it has led to a social polarisation of its Muslim community. Across Europe, and now America thanks to its Tea Party movement and Sarah Palin’s legacy, the popularity of right wing ideologies is also on the rise, another indicator that globalisation and economic integration does not translate into social integration. However the rise of intolerance in India has a more dangerous edge because of ignorance, lack of education, poverty, communal bias, deep-rooted and uniformed prejudices and political instigation.One month after 26/11, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh underlined the threat at, paradoxically, the abode of peace, Santiniketan, during a convocation lecture when he said: “Today, we are witnessing an unacceptable rise in intolerance. Our society seems more divided, more angry, and, tragically, more violent.” The roots of intolerance go back some way.Nathuram Godse was its original manifestation but of late, it has acquired a more prominent, more violent, and more political face.India’s founding fathers produced a document of extraordinary beauty, wisdom, intellect and foresight, the Constitution of India, which laid out the framework for a secular, democratic state, in effect, a template for caste, communal and religious tolerance. It has been consigned to the dustbin of history.Politics, the origin and bane of most social ills in India today, has been the prime mover.Parties like the Shiv Sena and its family offshoots have taken intolerance and insularity to frightening levels, mainly because it has been accompanied by violence, threats and bullying. The larger objective is to create a climate of fear and thus garner a larger share of votes from the indigenous community in the guise of giving greater employment opportunities and promoting local culture. The only culture it really promotes is bigotry.However loudly and publicly they may protest, the Sangh Parivar’s hate groups have taken that to another level, not just in Ayodhya and elsewhere but in the destruction of movie halls and exhibition centres showing what they consider material that is ‘antinational’ and “insulting” to Indian culture.That culture is not Indian; it is communal, blinkered and restricted to right wing Hindu extremists. The hate groups who commit such intolerant acts invariably do so to chants of ‘Vande Mataram’ and ‘Jai Hind’, the signature of ‘nationalist terrorists.’ In India’s case, that can now translate into hyper-nationalism. M F Husain, India’s bestloved and best-known artist, has completed over a decade in exile, thanks to these selfappointed guardians of Indian culture. More recent examples include abuse and violence directed at Kashmir separatist leaders in Delhi and against television channels that broadcast ‘pseudo-secular’ distortions. Historian Ramachandra Guha has written about the shrinking liberal space in India and that is a troubling trend. We who think differently, who worship other gods, or speak in a different tongue are becoming moving targets in the intifada of intolerance.


Turkmenistan Might Muscle NABUCCO and Trans-Caspian Pipeline Into Existence

NABUCCO: Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan and invite Russia to participate in a territorial dispute with Iran

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov met with representatives of the media urged Russian companies to take part in the laying of submarine pipeline systems in the Caspian Sea, the correspondent of IA REGNUM. The head of Turkmenistan underlined the interest of Turkmenistan in collaboration with companies with which his country has a long and fruitful working and who have solid experience and highly relevant engineering and technical framework for implementation of complex objects.

“In particular, this applies to Russian companies, with which Turkmenistan has long established reliable partnership and which enjoy great prestige in the world, including the laying of submarine pipeline systems” – said Berdimuhamedov.

According to him, Russia has always been a strategic partner for Ashgabat. “We are bound by historical and economic relations, and today many Russian companies are successfully operating on the Turkmen market. Therefore, Turkmenistan would have welcomed the participation of both Russian companies and companies of any other country in view of mutual benefit and feasibility”, – said the Turkmen leader.

The head of the Turkmen state once again voiced his country’s principled position not to allow politicization of pure economic projects. “As gas prices may be recalled Turkmenistan put forward at the UN concept of energy security, which clearly set equal relationship suppliers, transit countries and consumers. Therefore, any special or new approaches to the principles of calculating the export of Turkmen gas will not. As you know, Turkmenistan sells its gas at the border, and its price is derived from an international formula, taking into account the changing global energy market conditions demand. This means that in the sale of Turkmen gas to European direction Turkmenistan will adhere to generally accepted international principles, without prejudice to any of the parties – suppliers, transit countries and consumers. Thus, we are ready to cooperate on the basis of pragmatism with all stakeholders, “- concluded the head of Turkmenistan.

As already informed news agency REGNUM, the territorial division of the Caspian Sea between the Caspian states – Russia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Iran – still not resolved. Negotiating with the EU and investors an alternative to Russia’s South Stream gas pipeline NABUCCO as a potential supplier to its Trans-Caspian gas pipeline, Turkmenistan comes from the fact that for the construction of the Trans-Caspian pipeline across the Caspian Sea rather the consent of those countries, whose actual waters it will pass, then is Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan. Thus, Turkmenistan excludes the participation of at least neighboring Iran in determining the fate of projects affecting the waters of the Caspian Sea, to which Iran is in principle the claim. So far Azerbaijan has unofficially supports the line of Turkmenistan to Iran’s withdrawal from the process of discussing the draft, leaving himself room to maneuver around the EU-backed gas pipeline project NABUCCO and necessary for its implementation of the Trans-Caspian pipeline.

Source – a REGNUM

Tunisian Wikileaks Putsch–CIA Touts Mediterranean Tsunami of Coups

[The US will keep thinking that it is winning until the very end.  Expect no let-up in these destabilization scenarios, as the CIA continues to play every string on every purloined instrument in its secret arsenal, looking for that big “Win”.]

Tunisian Wikileaks Putsch: CIA Touts Mediterranean Tsunami of Coups

Libya, Egypt, Syria, Algeria, Jordan, Italy All Targeted; US-UK Want New Puppets to Play Against Iran, China, Russia;

Obama Retainers Cass Sunstein, Samantha Power, Robert Malley, International Crisis Group Implicated in Destabilizations

Webster G. Tarpley

Washington DC, January 16, 2011 – The US intelligence community is now in a manic fit of gloating over this weekend’s successful overthrow of the Tunisian government of President Ben Ali. The State Department and the CIA, through media organs loyal to them, are mercilessly hyping the Tunisian putsch of the last few days as the prototype of a new second generation of color revolutions, postmodern coups, and US-inspired people power destabilizations. At Foggy Bottom and Langley, feverish plans are being made for a veritable Mediterranean tsunami designed to topple most existing governments in the Arab world, and well beyond. The imperialist planners now imagine that they can expect to overthrow or weaken the governments of Libya, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Algeria, Yemen, and perhaps others, while the CIA’s ongoing efforts to remove Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi (because of his friendship with Putin and support for the Southstream pipeline) make this not just an Arab, but rather a pan-Mediterranean, orgy of destabilization.

Hunger revolution, not Jasmine revolution
Washington’s imperialist planners now believe that they have successfully refurbished their existing model of CIA color revolution or postmodern coup. This method of liquidating governments had been losing some of its prestige after the failure of the attempted plutocratic Cedars revolution in Lebanon, the rollback of the hated IMF-NATO Orange revolution in Ukraine, the ignominious collapse of June 2009 Twitter revolution in Iran, and the widespread discrediting of the US-backed Roses revolution in Georgia because of the warmongering and oppressive activities of fascist madman Saakashvili. The imperialist consensus is now that the Tunisian events prefigure a new version of people power coup specifically adapted to today’s reality, specifically that of a world economic depression, breakdown crisis, and disintegration of the globalized casino economy.

The Tunisian tumults are being described in the US press as the “Jasmine revolution,” but it is far more accurate to regard them as a variation on the classic hunger revolution. The Tunisian ferment was not primarily a matter of the middle class desire to speak out, vote, and blog. It started from the Wall Street depredations which are ravaging the entire planet: outrageously high prices for food and fuel caused by derivatives speculation, high levels of unemployment and underemployment, and general economic despair. The detonator was the tragic suicide of a vegetable vendor in Sidi Bouzid who was being harassed by the police. As Ben Ali fought to stay in power, he recognized what was causing the unrest by his gesture of lowering food prices. The Jordanian government for its part has lowered food prices there by about 5%.

Assange and Wikileaks, Key CIA Tools to Dupe Youth Bulge
The economic nature of the current unrest poses a real problem for the Washington imperialists, since the State Department line tends to define human rights exclusively in political and religious terms, and never as a matter of economic or social rights. Price controls, wages, jobless benefits, welfare payments, health care, housing, trade union rights, banking regulation, protective tariffs, and other tools of national economic self-defense have no place whatsoever in the Washington consensus mantra. Under these circumstances, what can be done to dupe the youth bulge of people under 30 who now represents the central demographic reality of most of the Arab world?

In this predicament, the CIA’s cyberspace predator drone Julian Assange and Wikileaks are providing an indispensable service to the imperialist cause. In Iceland in the autumn of 2009, Assange was deployed by his financier backers to hijack and disrupt a movement for national economic survival through debt moratorium, the rejection of interference by the International Monetary Fund, and re-launching the productive economy through an ambitious program of national infrastructure and the export of high technology capital goods, in particular in the field of geothermal energy. Assange was able to convince many in Iceland that these causes were not nearly radical enough, and that they needed to devote their energies instead to publishing a series of carefully pre-selected US government and other documents, all of which somehow targeted governments and political figures which London and Washington had some interest in embarrassing and weakening. In other words, Assange was able to dupe honest activists into going to work for the imperialist financiers. Assange has no program except “transparency,” which is a constant refrain of the US UK human rights mafia as it attempts to topple targeted governments across the developing sector in particular.

“Yes we can” or “Food prices are too damn high!”
Tunisia is perhaps the first case in which Assange and Wikileaks can make a credible claim to have detonated the coup. Most press accounts agree that certain State Department cables which were part of the recent Wikileaks document dumps and which focused on the sybaritic excess and lavish lifestyle of the Ben Ali clan played a key role in getting the Tunisian petit bourgeoisie into the streets. Thanks in part to Assange, Western television networks were thus able to show pictures of the Tunisian crowds holding up signs saying “Yes we can” rather than a more realistic and populist “Food prices are too damn high!”

Ben Ali had been in power for 23 years. In Egypt, President Mubarak has been in power for almost 30 years. The Assad clan in Syria have also been around for about three decades. In Libya, Colonel Gaddafi has been in power for almost 40 years. Hafez Assad was able to engineer a monarchical succession to his son when he died 10 years ago, and Mubarak and Gaddafi are trying to do the same thing today. Since the US does not want these dynasties, The obvious CIA tactic is to deploy assets like Twitter, Google, Facebook, Wikileaks, etc., to turn key members of the youth bulge into swarming mobs to bring down the gerontocratic regimes.

CIA Wants Aggressive New Puppets to Play Against Iran, China, Russia
All of these countries do of course require serious political as well as economic reform, but what the CIA is doing with the current crop of destabilizations has nothing to do with any positive changes in the countries involved. Those who doubt this should remember the horrendous economic and political record of the puppets installed in the wake of recent color revolutions – people like the IMF-NATO kleptocrat agents Yushchenko and Timoshenko in Ukraine, the mentally unstable warmongering dictator Saakashvili in Georgia, and so forth. Political forces that are foolish enough to accept the State Department’s idea of hope and change will soon find themselves under the yoke of new oppressors of this type. The danger is very great in Tunisia, since the forces which ousted Ben Ali have no visible leader and no visible mass political organization which could help them fight off foreign interference in the way that Hezbollah was able to do in checkmating the Lebanese Cedars putsch. In Tunis, the field is wide open for the CIA to install a candidate of its own choosing, preferably under the cover of “elections.” Twenty-three years of Ben Ali have unfortunately left Tunisia in a more atomized condition.

Why is official Washington so obsessed with the idea of overthrowing these governments? The answer has everything to do with Iran, China, and Russia. As regards Iran, the State Department policy is notoriously the attempt to assemble a united front of the entrenched Arab and Sunni regimes to be played against Shiite Iran and its various allies across the region. This had not been going well, as shown by the inability of the US to install its preferred puppet Allawi in Iraq, where the pro-Iranian Maliki seems likely to hold onto power for the foreseeable future. The US desperately wants a new generation of unstable “democratic” demagogues more willing to lead their countries against Iran than the current immobile regimes have proved to be. There is also the question of Chinese economic penetration. We can be confident that any new leaders installed by the US will include in their program a rupture of economic relations with China, including especially a cutoff of oil and raw material shipments, along the lines of what Twitter revolution honcho Mir-Hossein Mousavi was reliably reported to be preparing for Iran if he had seized power there in the summer of 2009 at the head of his “Death to Russia, death to China” rent-a-mob. In addition, US hostility against Russia is undiminished, despite the cosmetic effects of the recent ratification of START II. If for example a color revolution were to come to Syria, we could be sure that the Russian naval presence at the port Tartus, which so disturbs NATO planners, would be speedily terminated. If the new regimes demonstrate hostility against Iran, China, and Russia, we would soon find that internal human rights concerns would quickly disappear from the US agenda.

Key Destabilization Operatives of the Obama Regime
For those who are keeping score, it may be useful to pinpoint some of the destabilization operatives inside the current US regime. It is of course obvious that the current wave of subversion against the Arab countries was kicked off by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in her much touted speech last week in Doha, Qatar last week, when she warned assembled Arab leaders to reform their economies ( according to IMF rules) and stamp out corruption, or else face ouster.

Given the critical role of Assange and Wikileaks in the current phase, White House regulations czar Cass Sunstein must also be counted among the top putschists. We should recall that on February 24, 2007 Sunstein contributed an article entitled “A Brave New Wikiworld” to the Washington Post, in which he crowed that “, founded by dissidents in China and other nations, plans to post secret government documents and to protect them from censorship with coded software.” This was in fact the big publicity breakthrough for Assange and the debut of Wikileaks in the US mainstream press — all thanks to current White House official Sunstein. May we not assume that Sunstein represents the White House contact man and controller for the Wikileaks operation?

Every Tree in the Arab Forest Might Fall
Another figure worthy of mention is Robert Malley, a well-known US left-cover operative who currently heads the Middle East and North Africa program at the International Crisis Group (ICG), an organization reputed to run on money coughed up by George Soros and tactics dreamed up from Zbigniew Brzezinski. Malley was controversial during the 2008 presidential campaign because of the anti-Israeli posturing he affects, the better to dupe the Arab leaders he targets. Malley told the Washington Post of January 16, 2011 that every tree in the Arab forest could now be about to fall: “We could go through the list of Arab leaders looking in the mirror right now and very few would not be on the list.” Arab governments would be well advised to keep an eye on ICG operatives in their countries.

Czar Cass Sunstein is now married to Samantha Power, who currently works in the White House National Security Council as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director (boss) of the Office of Multilateral Affairs and Human Rights – the precise bureaucratic home of destabilization operations like the one in Tunisia. Power, like Malley, is a veteran of the US intelligence community’s “human rights” division, which is a past master of using legitimate beefs about repression to to replace old US clients with new puppets in a never-ending process of restless subversion. Both Malley and Power were forced to tender pro forma resignations during the Obama presidential campaign of 2008 – Malley for talking to Hamas, and Power for an obscene tirade against Hillary Clinton, who is now her bureaucratic rival.

Advice to Arab Governments, Political Forces, Trade Unions
The Arab world needs to learn a few fundamental lessons about the mechanics of CIA color revolutions, lest they replicate the tragic experience of Georgia, Ukraine, and so many others. In today’s impoverished world of economic depression, a reform program capable of defending national interests against the rapacious forces of financial globalization is the number one imperative.

Accordingly, Arab governments must immediately expel all officials of the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and their subset of lending institutions. Arab countries which are currently under the yoke of IMF conditionalities (notably Egypt and Jordan among the Arabs, and Pakistan among the Moslem states) must unilaterally and immediately throw them off and reassert their national sovereignty. Every Arab state should unilaterally and immediately declare a debt moratorium in the form of an open-ended freeze on all payments of interest and principal of international financial debt in the Argentine manner, starting with sums allegedly owed to the IMF-World Bank. The assets of foreign multinational monopolistic firms, especially oil companies, should be seized as the situation requires. Basic food staples and fuels should be subjected to price controls, with draconian penalties for speculation, including by way of derivatives. Dirigist measures such as protective tariffs and food price subsidies can be quickly introduced. Food production needs to be promoted by production and import bounties, as well as by international barter deals. National grain stockpiles must be quickly constituted. Capital controls and exchange controls are likely to be needed to prevent speculative attacks on national currencies by foreign hedge funds acting with the ulterior political motives of overthrowing national governments. Most important, central banks must be nationalized and reconverted to a policy of 0% credit for domestic infrastructure, agriculture, housing, and physical commodity production, with special measures to enhance exports. Once these reforms have been implemented, it may be time to consider the economic integration of the Arab world as an economic development community in which the foreign exchange earnings of the oil-producing states can be put to work on the basis of mutual advantage for infrastructure and hard commodity capital investment across the entire Arab world.

The alternative is an endless series of destabilizations masterminded by foreigners, and, quite possibly, terminal chaos.

Baloch High Court Bails Bugti

BHC grants bail to Shahzain, 26 others

BHC grants bail to Shahzain, 26 others

The Balochistan High Court (BHC) Monday granted bail to Shahzain Bugti and his arrested aides who were arrested last month.

According to a private television channel, the court ordered to release of each on Rs five lac bail amount.
A single bench of the Balochistan High Court comprising Justice Noor Muhammad Miskanzai had reserved on Thursday its judgment on the bail application of Shahzain Bugti, provincial president of the Jamhoori Watan Party.
Shahzain and 26 others were arrested by the Frontier Corps last month allegedly possessing huge quantity of weapons.

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi’s Mentor goes on trial in Jordan

Mentor of slain al-Qaida in Iraq leader goes on trial in Jordan

By The Associated Press (CP)

AMMAN, Jordan — The Palestinian-born mentor of slain al-Qaida in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi has pleaded innocent at the opening of his terrorism trial in Jordan.

Isam Mohammed Taher al-Barqawi and three other Jordanians of Palestinian origin, including a fugitive being tried in absentia, are charged with recruiting militants in Jordan to join a “terrorist organization” identified as the Taliban in Afghanistan.

If convicted, the four face 15 years in jail.

Monday’s hearing was adjourned until Jan. 30 to hear prosecution witnesses.

Zardari-Panetta meeting `attended by ISI chief`

[Gen Pasha comes to Washington to watch-dog Zardari’s meet with him, even though he has been called and subsequently declined to testify in a Brooklyn courtroom in the David Headley Mumbai trial.]

By Anwar Iqbal

WASHINGTON: ISI chief Lt-Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha attended an important meeting that President Asif Ali Zardari held with CIA chief Leon Panetta here on Friday, dispelling a perception that the government of Pakistan did not want to involve the military in its dealings with the Americans.

Diplomatic sources told Dawn that Gen Pasha was not in the presidential entourage which arrived here on Thursday. He travelled alone, participated in the president’s meeting with Mr Panetta but stayed away from other activities.

President Zardari left Washington on Saturday evening at the conclusion of the visit during which he also met US President Barack Obama along with Ambassador Husain Haqqani.

Although President Obama came with his entire national security and counter-terrorism team for the meeting, President Zardari did not take any other official with him, causing wild speculation in the media about the purpose and contents of his talks with the US leader.

President Zardari also met other US officials and lawmakers but his meeting with the CIA chief was considered the most important after the one with President Obama at the White House.

After the Zardari-Obama talks,  the White House issued a statement saying that the two leaders focused on shared efforts to fight terrorism and to promote regional stability.

But no statements were issued after President Zardari’s meeting with the CIA chief, which led to speculative reports in the media that Mr Panetta had come with plans to expand drone attacks to areas in and around Quetta where the Americans believe some senior Taliban leaders are hiding.

Since the CIA supervises the drone strikes such speculations were easy to make. Both Pakistani and American officials are refusing to disclose the topics discussed at the meeting.

“We do not discuss intelligence matters,” said Ambassador Haqqani when asked to comment on such reports at a briefing during the president’s visit.

But diplomatic observers in Washington say that Gen Pasha’s participation in Mr Zardari’s meeting with the CIA chief contradicts at least one part of these speculative reports which claimed that the Zardari government wanted to keep the military out of its talks with the Americans.