Adonis Diaries

Archive for October 5th, 2016

One or two lives? Is the third book another life? 

UNE VIE OU DEUX …

Mon troisième Roman sort dans 10 jours .

Contexte, et extrait .

(JULIEN, essayiste libanais , vivant en France, tomba amoureux de ZELPHA;journaliste et comédienne libanaise vivant en France aussi)

” Ce que j’ai envie de dire aujourd’hui, c’est qu’au fil de nos rencontres, cette femme ne fut pas pour me déplaire. Moi l’éternel célibataire, et quand je me suis décidé à avancer le premier pion; en reine impitoyable, elle le balaya, et me fit comprendre que non !

Mon pauvre pion se voulait cavalier, elle le traita de fou.« Non, c’est non.»

Pour se justifier, elle avait l’embarras du choix : Je n’avais déjà pas une brillante situation. L’ambition et moi, cela fait trois. (Je suis myope). Je n’étais donc pas en position de briguer quelque mandat sentimental que ce soit auprès d’une femme de bonne famille.

Me concernant, ma condition n’était cependant pas l’argument que ma compatriote mit en avant.

Je pense sincèrement qu’elle serait passée outre s’il n’y avait eu que cela. Ses parents certes, auraient voulu que leur fille unique fasse un beau mariage, or je ne suis pas l’homme des beaux mariages.

Sa raison était ailleurs. Elle sortait du tréfonds de notre conscience collective :

– Tu comprends Julien ! Accepte-moi comme la sœur que la vie ne t’a pas donnée, car pour moi, tu es le frère que je n’ai jamais eu. Tu es l’ami fiable. Le compatriote rassurant. Te regarder et te considérer comme un homme mâle, j’ai du mal. Prononcer les termes de l’amour et du sexe en arabe, me gêne.

– Je parle français tu sais ! Avais-je relevé.
Elle opposa une fin de non-recevoir à ma contestation:
– Ce serait ridiculement artificiel. Deux Libanais, désertant leur langue maternelle, et demandant l’asile sexuel à une autre langue ! Tu imagines la scène ?

Je n’ai pas eu le temps de réagir. Elle partit en vrille:

– J’ai été tellement moralisée en Arabe, que cette langue devint pour moi celle de tous les interdits.

Notre société étouffait les crises d’adolescence aux âges où l’on flirte.

Un train qu’on nous a interdit de prendre. De l’enfance, nous montions directement dans le train de l’âge adulte. Le premier homme qui m’a abordée, je l’ai pris pour un pédophile. Or il était on ne peut plus normal. Normal !

C’est moi hélas qui n’avais pas grandi.
Elle se tut le temps de reprendre son souffle, avant de poursuivre professorale :

– J’ai prié en Arabe. J’ai récité des poèmes sublimes en Arabe. Lu les textes les plus purs en Arabe. J’ai subi le lourd impact de la famille et de la religion, en Arabe. Les prêches du dimanche qui n’en finissaient pas quel qu’ait été l’église. Ils étaient en Arabe. Le seul amour que j’ai pratiqué dans cette langue fut l’amour parental. Trivialement dit, je ne pourrai pas mouiller en Arabe…

J’ai trouvé osé son terme. Elle faisait de l’érotisme sans le savoir.

– Tu m’écoutes ? Me rappela-t-elle à l’ordre.
– Oui je t’écoute !
– Comment ça, oui ?
– Je suis tout ouïe.

– En Arabe, j’aurai l’impression de transgresser. De commettre ! Il n’y a qu’à voir les insultes que la rue utilise dans notre langue !

Ces abrutis se sont appropriés tout le vocabulaire de la sexualité, à tel point, qu’ils l’ont rendue vulgaire, répugnante.

Non Julien, je ne pourrai pas. Pas avec un compatriote. Tu peux penser ce que tu veux, et tu auras sans doute raison, mais pour moi cela aura tout l’air d’un d’inceste au vocabulaire répugnant en plus !

Sous l’effet de cette ineptie, ma gorgée de café alla tout droit dans mes bronches.

– Tu vas un peu trop loin là, répondis-je en m’essuyant la bouche de mon revers de main. Comment font les autres Libanais ? Tous incestueux d’après toi !

Elle extirpa une cigarette refuge de son sac à main et sans me quitter des yeux, tout en cherchant son briquet dans son sac, (les yeux au bout des doigts), elle répondit aussitôt :

– Mais les Libanais intramuros, sont en immersion totale dans leur langue. Ils n’en sont pas sortis suffisamment longtemps pour la regarder de l’extérieur .

Même avec cela je connais des couples qui ont banni l’arabe de leur intimité. Ya3neh (je veux dire) on ne peut être à la fois in et out !

(Il arrive que les Libanaises soient trilingues dans une seule et même phrase). Nous vivons « en français » Julien, et cela nous donne le privilège de voir les petits défauts de l’édifice maternel…”

Jamil BERRY

Note: I feel that I’m still a child in my old age of candour. Could never fathom how we can become adult

Covert Drone War: Obama Worries Future Presidents will Wage this kind of Perpetual wars.

President Obama warns in a new interview of a future in which a U.S. president could engage in perpetual covert wars “all over the world.”

But he claims that the accountability and transparency measures he is instituting will make that less likely. (As if when the warriors want to go to war will be unable to circumvent any measures)

In the interview, with New York magazine’s Jonathan Chait, Obama expressed agreement with one of the most salient critiques of his drone war, that it risks creating “institutional comfort and inertia with what looks like a pretty antiseptic way of disposing of enemies.”

Obama explained that he had looked at “the way in which the number of drone strikes was going up and the routineness with which, early in my presidency, you were seeing both DOD and CIA and our intelligence teams think about this.”

Andrew Bossone shared this link

Eisenhower 2.0? Promotes war then warns of its consequences after you leave.

He continued: “And it troubled me, because I think you could see, over the horizon, a situation in which, without Congress showing much interest in restraining actions with authorizations that were written really broadly, you end up with a president who can carry on perpetual wars all over the world, and a lot of them covert, without any accountability or democratic debate.”

[See update below, in which the White House press secretary says Obama was actually talking about how he felt before he instituted his reforms.]

The president expressed a sense of urgency to rein in these powers that seems particularly appropriate given that both candidates for the White House have indicated receptiveness to intensifying the use of military force abroad, with Donald Trump going so far as expressing openness to killing the families of suspected terrorists.

“By the time I leave here, the American people are going to have a better sense of what their president is doing,” Obama said.

“Their president is going to have to be more accountable than he or she otherwise would have been. The world, I think, will have a better sense of what we’re trying to do and what we stand for. And I think all of that will serve the American people well in the future.”

But the one existing transparency measure Obama touts as an example in the interview — the administration’s release of its tally on civilian casualties from drone strikes in Yemen, Pakistan, and Somalia — was viewed by many in the human rights community as a farce, largely because it pointed to a death toll far lower than outside observer tallies.

The release, made public on the Friday afternoon of Fourth of July weekend, reported that between 64 and 116 civilians were killed during Obama’s two terms.

The Bureau of Investigative Journalism, by comparison, has estimated that between 492 and 1,077 civilians have been killed by drone strikes during the eight years of Obama’s presidency.

And critical questions about those operations remain unanswered, such as the circumstances that led to the death of Momina Bibi, a 68-year-old Pakistani grandmother killed in an October 2012 airstrike;

or the reason for the attack that took the life of Salim bin Ahmed Ali Jaber, an anti-al Qaeda imam in Yemen a month earlier;

or the full story of how American forces came to target a wedding convoy, also in Yemen, a year later, killing 12 people.

Those questions remain unanswered, in part because when the administration released the civilian casualty report, it did so without detailing a single specific incident in which the deaths of civilians were confirmed — thus foreclosing any possibility for follow up or public accountability for those operations.

(See The Intercept’s series The Drone Papers describing the secret military documents that exposed the inner workings of Obama’s drone wars.)

What’s more, the alarming changes that Obama describes as over the horizon are already here.

“What’s so interesting is that President Obama acknowledges this problem — that future presidents will be empowered to kill globally, and in secret.

What Obama doesn’t acknowledge is how much of a role his administration had in making that a bizarre normal,” Naureen Shah, director of national security and human rights at Amnesty International, told The Intercept.

“There is something so strange about the person who many would say is very responsible for this situation actually acknowledging it and saying he tried to plan for it,” Shah added.

“What we’ll be left with from the Obama administration is a far more dangerous precedent of secret, global killings than what we started with.”

From the very beginning of his presidency, Obama tightly embraced legal arguments, including the “state secrets privilege,” to deflect inquiries into the government’s use of lethal force in foreign countries;

he fought vigorously for years to keep his rationale for assassinating an American citizen secret;

he never explained how the U.S. came to kill that same American citizen’s 16-year-old son; and he has never once forced his premier intelligence agency to publicly answer for the deaths of non-Western civilians — of which there have been many — during an eight-year covert bombing campaign.

In the New York magazine interview, Obama gave human rights groups and “the left” credit for pushing him on issues of transparency in targeted killing — but at the same time indicated they had little impact on his own decisions.

“I’m glad the left pushes me on this,” Obama said. “I’ve said to my staff and I’ve said to my joint chiefs, I’ve said in the Situation Room: I don’t ever want to get to the point where we’re that comfortable with killing. It’s not why I wanted to be president, to kill people.”

(What he intended and wanted, do Not match his desires to feel comfortable with the war institutions)ri

“Do I think that the critiques are fair or fully informed?” the president went on to say. “Not always. Sometimes they are. Much of the time they’re not.

To give you the most basic example: People, I think, don’t always recognize the degree to which the civilian-casualty rate, or the rate at which innocents are killed, in these precision strikes is significantly lower than what happens in a conventional war.”

While the Obama administration characterizes drones as a surgically precise weapon, the facts don’t always support that conclusion.

In 2013, for example, research by Larry Lewis, a former research scientist at the Center for Naval Analysis, found that drone strikes in Afghanistan were 10 times more likely to kill civilians than piloted airstrikes.

Obama’s critique of Congress — that it doesn’t seem to care enough to rein in the drone program — is both on point and ironic, coming from him.

Far from encouraging Congress to weigh in, the Obama administration has actively fought Congress’s attempts to even get basic information about drone strikes.

The White House, for instance, refused to show the legal memos authorizing the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki to Congress until 2014, when Obama nominated the memos’ author to become a federal judge, and a group of senators threatened to hold up the confirmation until they could read the memos.

Chris Anders of the American Civil Liberties Union said he was not impressed by Obama’s own sense of restraint. “The president has left behind very broad claims of executive authority to order lethal strikes away from traditional battlefields. Even if he’s instituted some processes, and some minor levels of transparency — such as aggregate levels of casualties — it is still a very broad power with almost no meaningful checks on it.”

Update: 6:15 p.m. ET
White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest on Monday told reporters that Obama’s comments about a future president potentially waging perpetual wars actually referred to a state of affairs in the past, which he has since averted.

“He was talking about the situation he inherited,” Earnest said. “In the early days of the administration, he was considering the tools that had been made available to him, and considering the way in which they were being used, and he was considering how, over the horizon, was a scenario in which there would not be sufficient transparency in place to contain this extraordinary authority that, based on new technology, could be wielded by the president of the United States.”

Earnest insisted that “what the president and his team have steadily worked to do is to try to impose greater transparency and to impose constraints that would address those concerns that the president had from his earliest days in office.”

But rather than wind down a Bush-era program, Obama dramatically escalated the pace of drone warfare, conducting nearly nine times the number of strikes as his predecessor. (More drones and performing drones were made and needed testing in the battlefield?)

Obama’s moves toward increased transparency and accountability are, as mentioned above, limited. And Congress has neither conducted oversight nor passed legislation that would restrain a future president.

And as Obama himself said in the interview, he has not arrived at “a perfect solution.”

He told New York magazine that the country still needs to find a balance between “not elevating every terrorist attack into a full-blown war” and “pretending as if we can just take shots wherever we want, whenever we want, and not be answerable to anybody.

What I’ve tried to do is to move the needle in the right direction, to set some trends in the right direction. But there’s gonna be a lot more work to do.”


adonis49

adonis49

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