Commenter Profile

Saudi Arabia’s Dangerous Decline – Trita Parsi/Aljazeera

January 8, 2016 6:38 pm
Taxi, the Jennifer Williams article is hocus pocus about the insecurity and fear of the Saudis driving them to do the things they are doing. They aren't any more insecure than the Americans who used the Patriot Act for all sauces, snooped on almost every American, profiled foreigners and created the no-fly list. What is driving the US in taking all the measures and precautions if not insecurity? France, the UK, Russia and the rest of the world now feel insecure and Saudia is no exception. It has a problem with Iran playing in its back yard and this is what the problem is mostly about.

The Absurd Reason why the UK claims to support the House of Saud

January 7, 2016 9:14 pm
Tom, Senator Graham saying the Saudi royals had anything to do with 911 is howling at the moon. The interview with Graham is loaded with  terms like "maybe" and "could have been" and "probably"; all the markings of someone assuming left and right and trying to sell a book that was published or that was to be be published. That bit about the Orlando airport is ridiculous. Orlando is the closest airport to Disney World and a favourite destination of Saudis. The jumbo-jet that took off during the grounding of all civil aircraft was the family plane of the Bin Ladin family that had paid Osama his share of the family's vast wealth and disowned him because of his activities several years before 911. Senator Graham should have worried more about the 50 or so Israelis including the NJ dancers that were rounded up because of 911 and whisked off to Israel in the dark of the night than the irregularity of a planeload of Saudi men, women and children from the Bin Ladin family being allowed to leave the country.. As to the Saudi royals, they are being demonized more than they deserve. The notion that they had anything to do with the 911 massacre doesn't make sense.

The Execution of Nimr Al-Nimr: One More Reason to Rethink the Toxic U.S.-Saudi Alliance – Medea Benjamin/HuffPo

January 8, 2016 9:44 pm
Sean, I'd say very much. Saudia announced today that it intends to sell shares in either its ARAMCO, that's worth $10 trillion (20 times as much as Exxon Mobil) based on proven reserves or in some of its downstream subs. It has to make up somehow its current annual shortfall of $90 billion since there's not enough in oil these days and the US with reserves up to a billon barrels has oil coming out of its ears. If the Saudis intend to raise cash by selling shares, the US could make the task either relatively easy or downright hard and that's where goodwill comes into play. The US and Saudis have been pals for decades and I don't think that this relationship is at any risk. What we're seeing now is a mild road-bump between the two..
January 7, 2016 10:38 pm
"The killing of Sheikh Al-Nimr should serve as a prime moment for the U.S. to reconsider its alliance with the Saudi regime..." (M. Benjamin} The US did so when it made its peace with Iran in spite of Saudia's very strong objection. The Saudis took it as a stab in the back and the execution of the cleric was a message and a reminder to the US of Saudi substantial influence in the Arab world. It should be noted that although al-Nimr preached non-violent opposition to the regime in his demand for due justice for his people, just before his arrest in 2012, he told the people to rejoice at the death of Crown Prince Nayef because he was a tyrant that deserved to die and be eaten by worms. He also wished the king and the other royals an equally painful and early death. not exactly the appropriate language in talking about a prince that had just died as well as the king. I still think his execution was wrong but the Saudis had a message to send
January 8, 2016 7:14 pm
Taxi, Saudis went overboard in their execution of al-Nimr. They are very pissed off with the US making peace with Iran and the execution was as much a message to the US as it was to Iran. Some Arab states are most probably reluctantly siding with Saudia such as the UAE which has half a million Iranian residents and Iranians are among the UAE's biggest investors especially in real estate. Iranians own $100 million's worth of the world's highest tower, the Bourj al-Khalifah, but Saudia is considered the "Big Daddy" of all the Arab countries so most, even the UAE will be siding with it whether they'd like to or not..
January 8, 2016 5:09 am
Taxi, I wasn't being judgmental of what the cleric said, I take no side in this conflict. I meant to say that he was leading with his chin with those stiff words about the royals as these people don't forgive. The bit about rejoicing the Crown Prince being dead and eaten by worms and wishing the same fate for the king and the rest of the royals to be taken by the angel of death to burn in hell  was not necessary in his otherwise just speech for justice for his people. BTW, he wished the same painful end for Syria's Assad that everyone thinks is made of sugar'n'spice. One can't agree with him about the Saudi royals but not about the Syrian leader. Speaking of worms, this video with English subtitles from the worms and snakes at MEMRI: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GLBACJNNg8  

The Terror Wrist

January 5, 2016 3:42 am
Here's a video filmed December 30th and published on Youtube 3 days ago. It shows an armed settler thug, with 6 IDF soldiers with a dumb look on their faces in tow as he invades a school in Hebron to film and spook the hell out of the Palestinian students. Terrorism at its best https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2l1edJhw7s The idea is to trick the system by asking it banal questions but another  way of doing it is by asking Google in French although it yields English results. Very tiring and annoying process of having to play games with Google to get answers about Israel's evil deeds, but there is no better service. To get this above recent video on Hebron, I entered " troisième intifada en Palestine décembre 2015   Also related from the Monitor of Nov 25th: "Israel meets with Google and YouTube to discuss censoring Palestinian videos Wednesday, 25 November 2015 13:29  963  380    17  1433   Google Logo   Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely has met with representatives of YouTube and Google to discuss ways to cooperate in what she calls the fight against “inciting violence and terrorism”. Israel’s Maariv newspaper reported yesterday that Hotovely agreed to work with Google and YouTube in order to establish a joint working mechanism to monitor and prevent the publication of “inflammatory material” originating in the Palestinian territories. Since the latest escalation of violence between Palestinians and Israeli security services that erupted at the beginning of October, many people have been sharing videos depicting Israeli aggression towards Palestinians to highlight the Palestinian perspective of the conflict. London-based Arab newspaper Al-Araby Al-Jadeed has expressed concerns that the meetings suggest moves towards censoring Palestinian material on the part of the Israeli state." https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/news/middle-east/22471-israel-meets-with-google-and-youtube-to-discuss-censoring-palestinian-videos  

Is the West Disintegrating? – Patrick Buchanan/Blog

December 31, 2015 3:53 pm
Sorry I misread you, Sean. I can understand your negative feelings from what happened in Boston and Paris and those same feelings are not strange to me as I also feel them. I can't blame the Americans too much for feeling they way they do, the Arabs/Moslems have been leading with their chins by having remained silent for so long on this issue and because of it, some Arabs/Moslems are being unfairly treated for the vile actions of a few. Of course, the Zionists are milking this situation to the utmost.
December 31, 2015 6:01 am
"When confronted with threats from messianic collectivists of any stripe, I go into warrior mode — definitely ready to stand my ground."   (Sean) Sean, you and Pat Buchanan seem to think that the Syrians, Turks and other Asians are converging on Europe as part of an overall Moslem plan to overtake Europe. This is wrong; they are there because of their misconception that Europe is the answer to their economic problems and raging wars; they are simply seeking a better life for their families, which is a natural aspiration. If given the choice, 9 out of 10 of these Asian refugees would rather be back in their home countries if conditions there would improve. Europeans with a population of over 300 millions and zillions of square kilometers of land are freaking out over a sudden surge of a few hundred thousand refugees while little Lebanon with a population of 4 million and 10,000 square kilometers of land with very limited resources is coping with over 1.5 million Syrian and 600,000 Palestinian refugees is not making a peep. Europeans are cry-babies, they are killing themselves in trying to attract young fertile immigrants to help with their demographic problems but are not comfortable with the fact that these new refugees happen to be Moslem. An oddity in the news clips of Syrian refugees graciously being accepted into Canada. Coming off the plane, they were fair-skinned, had straight teeth, hair is well done and wearing better clothes than the new ones being offered to them as they landed. The way the male refugees move about, you could tell they are young, educated and most probably professionals. They sure look like they were part of cherry-picking process and they sure don't look like the toothless Bedouin Syrians in the Lebanese, Jordanian and Turkish refugees camps that in most part are under-dressed with a simple abaya and wearing a one-toed sandal living in a tent under harsh winter conditions.But it makes for great political photo opportunities. Then the news of German company recruiters working at German train stations where refugees were arriving with a mission to hire on the spot, prospective candidates to fill industrial jobs in remote areas where Germans don't want to work. Some in Germany are saying this is a government ploy to short-circuit unionized workers. The US, which is at the root of the war in Syria that has caused 10 million displaced persons is now up to something like 2000 Syrian refugees accepted in the US and Trump if elected would probably kick those out of the country. There is no Santa Claus, just more and more abuse. The refugees are a result of the West's war on Syria, Libya, Afghanistan and so on so don't complain. Sean, you should worry more for the Moslem immigrants than for the Europeans.

Cyborg of Galilee

January 2, 2016 2:10 pm
Hi Taxi, great writing. Gone through the very picturesque Part I  and will continue a bit later. Very nice, I can see how much you love the land.

How Salma Hayek Pitched an Arab Legend to Zionist Hollywwod

December 31, 2015 2:44 pm
Very good speech by Salma Hayek accepting the award from James Zogbi's Arab American Institute. In the various write-ups about the movie "The Prophet", it had a few "World Premier" showings like in LA, in Doha, at the Toronto Festival, in Beirut and so on. The "World Premier" one in Beirut in May was probably because one of the major funders of the movie, Haitham Nassar,  is a Beirut businessman. Another big funder is the State of Qatar, which explains the "World Premier" there. She's fun to listen to and I found myself listening to the whole 40-minute speech.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

December 31, 2015 7:51 am
Sean, on 3 occasions Israelis were openly advised to disregard international law, the first time by the despicable lawyer Dershowitz at Herzliya in his advice to Israeli lawyers and another time when he elaborated on doing it in an anti-Iran ramble as described in a David Samel article and discussion on Mondo; see the video starting at about the 9-minute mark  http://mondoweiss.net/2014/01/dershowitz-attention-international and once by the equally despicable lawyer Livni who once was the Israeli Justice Minister that declared that she was against International law. Her actual words: :'... I  was the Minister of Justice. I am a lawyer... But I am against the law- international law in particular. Law in general" We both know that Israelis don't need any encouragement to break the law, they do it naturally.    

Russia Destroys The Greater Israel Dream

January 8, 2016 7:48 pm
Tony, in short, to deny the existence of Jesus is to deny the veracity of the Noble Quran wherein Jesus is mentioned 59 times in name (Issa) or in reference such as "the Messiah" or "Son of Maryam" with a whole chapter (Maryam) devoted to the Annunciation and to the virgin birth of Jesus. The Prophet Muhammad, also known as Ahmad is mentioned 70 times. Maryam is the only woman to be mentioned by name at 24 times The winner with the most "mentions" in the Quran is Moses (Musa) at 136 times. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_people_mentioned_by_name_in_the_Quran
January 8, 2016 5:46 am
  "I thought that Jesus was referred to in Roman dispatches to Rome. Or in some way, his existence was recorded by the Romans. " (al) Al, you are probably thinking of the 90AD writings of the Roman-Jewish historian Flavius Josephus that wrote of Jesus as well as of Jesus' brother "James" ttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josephus_on_Jesus    
December 31, 2015 3:07 pm
Speaking of destroying the Greater Israel Dream, a new twist of events that could prove very interesting how the US will wiggle its way out of it. A lawsuit against the American government's Treasury Dept.  by Susan Abulhawa and other Americans; in Al-Jazeera, the link includes the actual lawsuit   US sued over donations for illegal Israeli settlements Lawsuit targets US Treasury Department for allowing billions in tax-exempt donations to support Israel's landgrabs. Ali Younes | 30 Dec 2015 Listen to this page using ReadSpeaker
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A lawsuit has been filed in a US court seeking to stop non-profit groups from sending billions of dollars worth of tax-exempt donations to support illegal Israeli settlements and the Israeli army. A group of American citizens filed the suit on December 21 against the US Department of Treasury, claiming about 150 non-profits have sent an estimated $280bn to Israel over the past two decades. The lawsuit claims the donations were "pass-throughs" and "funnels" to support the Israeli army and the illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories.  In the US Internal Revenue Code, these organisations are identified as "501(c)(3)", and donors are given tax-exempt status and allowed to claim a tax deduction on their gift.   Sheldon Adelson, an American casino magnate, and several other wealthy pro-Israeli businessmen were named in the lawsuit as donors but not as defendants. The Treasury Department declined to comment on the suit, stating in an email to Al Jazeera: "We don't comment on pending litigation." Susan Abulhawa, a Palestinian-American writer and human rights activist who  put her name on the 73-page lawsuit, said it is about seeking justice for the Palestinian people." http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2015/12/sued-donations-illegal-israeli-settlements-151230080026247.html