Adonis Diaries

Archive for the ‘Book Review’ Category

“Are there moderate Muslims?”

Posted on September 25, 2008 (and written in Oct. 26, 2207)

Note: This lengthy article was meant to be exhaustive. If you want me to split it in two articles, I will be ready to do it.

It coincided that I was reading chapters of two books concomitantly “Quand l’Amerique refait le Monde” by Ghassan Salameh (Salami) and “L’Apocalypse” by Oriana Fallaci  when I realized that the topic of current Islamic fundamentalism is wreaking havoc on the disposition of many western people.

Mostly, the western people tended to be liberal in many issues but could no longer reconcile a liberal attitude toward Islam: Mainly the reality of the virulent traditional Islamic behaviors toward strict adoption of the Koranic laws that regulate the daily life for the Muslims and trying to circumvent the civil laws in Europe.

Ghassan Salameh has investigated the genesis of the new trend in the US ruling government toward Islam after the Twin Towers September 11 attack and which was based on the studies of a few “prestigious” American academics on Islam. 

Salame stated that the neo-conservative elements in the Bush administration have adopted Bernard Lewis as their guru in matters related to Islam and the anti-Muslim movements. 

Professor Lewis was fascinated and excited in the 1950s with everything related to Islam and then turned sour, negative and dissatisfied with the Islamic World: he repeatedly claimed in his studies that the Muslims have a rage and a strong tendency to hate the Western Nations as a product of their sense of inferiority complex toward the West and propagated the concept of an invasion to saw the grains of democracy in the Near East.

After the September 11 attack on the Twin Tower, the neo-conservatives like Perle, Wolfowitz, Abrams, and Gaffneys directed the debate toward the confirmation of pre-emptive offensive against the infantile specie of the political regimes in the Muslim World.

The spreading notion of an ineluctable conflict of Islam with the USA.  Pipes went as far as eliminating any cause for using cultural instruments in the arsenal of the war.

It is obvious that Oriana Fallaci has made up her mind that there are no moderate Muslims, unless they are Muslims by birth but No longer practicing  believers: simply because the Koran is the Koran and there is no way to interpret the Sourates to coincide with civil laws in the western nations. 

Actually, the late Oriana Fallaci was a staunch liberal but could not swallow the latest slaughtering of foreign prisoners by extremist Muslims and how Muslim immigrants are flaunting the civil laws in Europe.

Fallaci insists that the word “terrorism” is not good enough; the mass media should remain consistent and say “Islamic terrorism”; a term that would satisfy the terrorist Zionists immensely. 

Fallacy relied on St. John’s apocalyptic vision where a Monster with seven heads and ten horns would emerge from the sea and then the Beast on land would execute all the Monster’s orders. Thus, the Monster is Islam and the Beast is represented by the European liberals and leaders who are trying to appease Muslims and exhorting them to moderation by dangling carrots instead of raising the heavy sticks.

I was surprised by the coincidence to read that Oriana Fallaci also adopted the views of Bernard Lewis on Islam and considered him as the ultimate authority for truth on Islamic matters.

Apparently, the then 80-years old Lewis and growing more senile by the by, gave an interview to a German daily where he lambasted the West for not believing that radical Islam is the main enemy, instead of the new fascists. Lewis is hammering the notion that all of Europe is going to be Islamist by the year 2100. (If mankind survive till then)

Thus, there is a disposition to fit theories that antagonize the Muslim World by accepting as evidence the many terrorist acts perpetrated by extremist Muslims.

The vehement attitude of Fallaci toward Islam stems from two premises:

First, all of the terrorist attacks in the World are perpetrated by Muslims, (obviously wrong and faked wishes) and

Second, the practices of Muslims’ behavior in the Western World are based on the teaching of the Koran which cannot be reconciled with the rational civil laws in the western countries they live in. (How these laws are biased to the privileged elite classes are Not broached)

The first premise may be true if we rely solely on the media accounts that, almost exclusively and consistently, show that the current terrorist attacks in the Western World, such as USA, Spain, Britain, France, Germany, Russia, and Holland where “terrorism had struck”, were done by Muslims.  She focused on the terrible acts of slaughtering hostages by Muslim radicals in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Russia.

Fallaci forgot to mention that terrorism has also been striking in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Philippine, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Palestine, and Lebanon, Africa, to name but a few, in order to destabilize these States, where terrorism was carried by Hindu, Christians, and various Muslim sects against each other castes.

The hidden facts that terrorism is done by the western extremists are not widely publicized and mostly toned down and not taken up relentlessly by the media.

For example, the Oklahoma City bombing was first attributed to Muslim extremists and then the US had to admit that it was a purely US extremist act; not to mention the dozen of mass killings in the US schools and universities

Moreover, most of the western terrorist acts are ordered by the states or committed by organizations supported by the states and consequently not divulged and buried as national security secrets.

Actually, all the terrorist acts of the Israeli settlers and the government on Palestinians and other adjacent States are coined as “individual actions by crazy people”

Fallaci should have recalled the many terrorist acts that ravaged Italy and Germany in the 60s and 70s and committed by the extremist left movements and done by non-Muslims; she also decided to forget the recent decade long terrorism and genocides that plagued former Yugoslavia and which was started by Christians among themselves in self cleansing mechanisms and then cleansing themselves with the blood of the Muslims in Kosovo and Serbia. (And current far-right parties terrorist activities)

Fallaci should have taken up also these terrorist occurrences of destabilizing many third world countries, and going on even today, by the US and Israel. She has indeed experienced these Western terrorist acts during her long career as a journalist, but she decided to focus her venom on Islam, thus satisfying the present Western propaganda strategy of misinformation and distortion.

As for the second premise, Fallaci poured her venom on those Muslims who claim to be moderate, simply because they didn’t join a radical group or didn’t commit a terrorist act but engage practically in “awful behaviors”. 

For example, how can a Muslim claim to be moderate if he prevents his wives or daughters to be integrated in their new societies, ordering them to swim in their long robe “dishdasha/jalabiya”, even if this practice is tantamount to drowning, or having three wives and treating them as slaves, or beating his wives because it is permitted by “Al Shari3a”, killing his daughters because they refused to marry the men that he selected for them, lambasting school directors because they allowed their sons and daughters to be offered sweets containing hints of alcohol, and so on.  (But many of these customs are practiced by many non-Muslims religious sects, and the Koran does Not encourage many of those imposed patriarchal privilege systems)

Fallaci claims that nine out of ten of the Islamic divine inspired laws are opposite to the Italian civil laws, and consequently, there is no possibility of coming to acceptable terms with Muslim believers. (Let Italy just carry out the civil laws on non-abiding Muslim citizens to encourage “moderate Muslims” to follow suit)

If we recapitulate the history of the world we can demonstrate that almost every religion encouraged terrorist acts throughout history when the goal was to establish a theocratic state, governed by the clerics, or to maintain the power of the religious hierarchy caste over the citizens and the other minority castes. 

European history is packed with genocidal periods where the majority of a Christian sect tried to exterminate other secondary Christian sects in France, Spain, Byzantium, Russia, and Germany, to name a few, and labelled them “heretics” and their shed blood a duty.

The one main factor that permitted the western Christian societies to edge toward rational civil laws and weakens the Christian Orders was that the New Testament dealt only with spiritual doctrines: Christ died before his religion was firmly established and didn’t have to enact laws organizing society when the Roman civil laws were the law of the land.

The major problem with the Muslim religion and its inability to establish rational civil laws for the land is that the Prophet Muhammad vanquished his arch enemy the Koreish tribes in Mecca, while still alive and had to re-organize the tribal society with laws emanating from the “unique God” and the mainstream customs among the tribes.

For maybe esthetic reasons, the Sourats of the Koran were organized according to length and not chronologically as logic would dictate; otherwise, the Muslims would have realized that the sourats in the first 13 years of Islam were purely spiritual and not deviating far from Jesus’ teaching. 

Actually, whatever variations there are in Islam and Christianity, are identical to the views of the different schisms in Christianity in the early centuries (mostly based on Jewish customs sect) and which provoked mass extermination of the smaller Christian sects by the dominant Christian sects.

For example, the status of the Virgin Mary, the duality of Jesus, the Holy Ghost and a multitude of other differences that Byzantium was famous with splitting hair were points of contention among the Christian sects and still are.

If the Koran was divided into two volumes, the spiritual volume related to the first 13 years of its formation and the second volume related to the earthly laws governing the City-State of Medina and then society in the Arab peninsula among the tribes, then communication among the two cultures would have been possible and the Muslims would not have reverted to rigid dogma forced upon them by 10 centuries of domination of Central Asian tribes (Mongol Empires) and culminating by their close associated tribe the Ottomans.

As is common among all religions, the religious orders emphasize the earthly concepts that can be impressed upon the believers by attaching heavy burdens on their daily life for total subjugation. 

Ironically, Christianity created daily burdens of religious obligations that were Not included in the “Bible”, just to impose its hegemony over the soul of its believers.

Jesus strongly denounced the Jewish Order for the daily heavy burdens they encumbered the Jews with and lambasted the order as a hypocritical order. 

Nevertheless, Christianity, whether Roman or Lutheran or Protestant, feverishly created religious obligations that were not in the New Testament but dug up from the Jewish religious books or from the proclamations of the saints and religious leaders to subjugate their members into a tight closed caste.

In general, Christianity is an open religion and the Western Nations in their zest to proselytize their respective dominant religion endeavored to invade the “barbarous” people for the proclaimed purpose of indoctrinating these people into the Christian values; most of these people were subjugated into changing religions nominally but kept their “pagan” traditions.

However, the Christian Maronite sect in Lebanon has reverted to a closed religion and adopted the caste system since the independence of Lebanon in 1943. 

The Maronite sect has agreed on a tacit pact with the non-Christian castes not to allow non-Christian members from the other castes in Lebanon to be baptized Maronites; I can testify that even Lebanese living overseas were not permitted to change religion: the Maronite Order made it clear that the process of changing religion is not feasible. 

This Maronite Christian sect has sold out its soul to preserve its supremacy as a caste in Lebanon local politics and ended up losing its supremacy in 1989 at the Taef Conference in Saudi Arabia.

Consequently, the divergence between the western societies and the Muslim societies are the result of types of revealed Books; the main Christian Book that basically does not contain earthly laws but were created later by the dominant Christian orders, and the Muslim Book that does specifically include earthly laws for governing societies.

The western societies have succeeded in establishing rational, though debatable, civil laws created by men (women had not yet fully participated in most of these laws); and they don’t have to bend their laws to accommodate Muslim immigrants who are stuck with divine laws to run their daily lives. 

This is not to say that the Western World has to adopt pre-emptive strategies of conquering Muslim and Arab countries on the flimsy crusading abstract notion of spreading democracy and the international civil laws, when the geo-political reality is clear and is meant to control energy resources and stopping the expansion of China in world politics.

As for the Moslem World, if the purpose of all these upheavals is catching up with the technology of the western societies then the burden resides mainly on accepting the premise that the spiritual doctrines should be separated from the rational civil laws. 

Otherwise, if the Muslim World wants to survive under its own set of divine obligations and be ruled my mullah, and sheikhs, and muftis then let it be proclaimed openly and unite under this purpose and let the world live as separate entities; societies that instituted civil laws and those insisting on man-made “inspired divine laws”.

In either case, there is no basic need for forced hegemony of one civilization over another if the human mind cannot device a method for human communication and entente: forced hegemony has never worked or lasted in history, and all the evidences are leading to the fact that the current western forced hegemony is failing, unless partitioning the Arab World into cantons is viewed as a definite success of the new pre-emptive “war” strategy, which has nothing to do with cultural differences.

Islam is carrying an insurmountable burden of awkward traditions, not just because of the 5 centuries of Ottoman domination, but 11 centuries of Muslim Sunni of Central Asian tribes that dominated most of the Muslim World, from Mongolia, to Kazakhstan, Kirghizia, Azerbaijan, the Caucasus, Iran, Afghanistan, India, and Turkey.  These hordes have established empires and the local vassals adopted the rigid dogmas and tribal customs of their caste systems.

Any recent reforms undertaken in the Middle East were thwarted by the Western powers to divide these nations and establish theocratic States and dictators most amenable to their creators.  Our inability to change and communicate, even internally among ourselves, is related fundamentally to our autonomous caste structure.

Fallaci was sensing right, but she was fighting cancer. Anyway, rational behavior is not the rule in this somber period within the Bush Administration, even if many of its leaders seem physically fit, aside of Dick Cheney.

Note 1:  The proposition that the Sourates of the first thirteen years were spiritual in nature was investigated by Antoun Saadi in the 1940s and published in a book “Al Islam fi ressalataih al Massihiyat wa al Mohammadiyah” translated liberally as “Islam (Message of Peace) by its two messengers Christ and Mohammed”

Note 2: Antoun Saadi is the founder of the Lebanese-bases Syria National Social party in 1936. A secular party , wanting to separate the religious sects dominance in the political and social structure and the government civil laws and regulation. This party was attacked by the sectarian parties encouraged by the mandated colonial powers of France and England on the Near-East region. This party claimed that we are one people in Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq and was the preadhead of confronting the Zionist plans that were backed by the colonial powers and the USA and Russia.

Note: The Lebanese-based Syria National Social party was founded in 1936 by Antoun Saadi, during the French colonial mandate over Lebanon and Syria. It is a secular party that practice the separation of religion from civil law systems and has been spreading to current Syria, Palestine, Jordan and Iraq.

This party is at a total odd with the concept of ethnic identity and race of the Nazi and Fascist ideologies, and does Not even recognize Language as a basis for National identity or kinds of religions.

The foundation of a National people is the daily trades among the communities and their customs and traditions.

This party had the unfortunate luck to be instituted as the Nazi and Fascist parties got roots in Europe. And the name also included National Social too.

This party was adopting the symbol of the Land that resembled the Nazi Swastika and in color too.

The so-called secular leftist parties in the Near East, which at the time bowed to Stalin communist policies and directives, labelled the Party as Nazist without reading any of its books and daily articles on all the political and cultural issues of the period.

Besides the secular Communist and Syria National Social parties, all the other parties were created on a sectarian affiliation basis, and they still dominating the political systems landscape in the Near East.

هو ضحية «زوبعته»

كان صديقي الأستاذ الجامعي يستمزج آراء الحاضرين عن عناوين لكتب يمكن أن يرسلها لصديق له في الولايات المتحدة

طلب منه نصيحته وتزويده بكتب تتحدث عن المجتمعات العربية وتاريخ تطورها وأزماتها في المنطقة. وبعدما تطوّع البعض بالإشارة إلى بعض العناوين، قمت بدوري بتذكيره بعدم نسيان أنطون سعادة وكتبه.

كانت ردة فعل صديقي الأستاذ الجامعي فورية من دون أي تلكؤ، فقال: «لا لا لا يمكن أن أروّج للفكر النازي».

كانت المفاجأة كبيرة بالنسبة إليّ بما أن الحكم على فكر سعدة جاء من قِبل أستاذ جامعي يُفترض أن لا يكون عنده تحيّز تجاه أيّ أفكار، طالما أن المسألة بالنسبة لطالب الكتب في الولايات المتحدة تتعلق بالبحث والدراسة، وبالتالي لا مجال لأخذ موقف ايديولوجي تجاه الأفكار طالما أنها تتعلق بالأبحاث.

المفارقة الثانية كانت في موقف صديقنا الأستاذ الجامعي أنّه حكم على فكر سعادة بأنه جزء من الفكر النازي. من خلال الحكم بالنازية على فكر سعادة، تأكّدت أن صديقنا لم يقرأ، بل لم يطلع بتاتاً على فكر سعادة.

عندما سألته كيف يحكم وهو بالأكيد لم يقرأ سعادة، أجاب: «لا داعي لقراءته فالموضوع واضح من عنوانه. كل مظاهر حزبه وشعاراته كانت نازية». مع هذا الجواب، تأكّد لي ما كنت قد لاحظته من خلال عملية تقييم تاريخية فكرية وسياسية وتنظيمية وحتى أمنية لمسار الحزب السوري القومي الاجتماعي في تاريخ سابق أوصلتني إلى بعض الملاحظات، لا مجال لذكر جميعها هنا، لكن نقطة مهمة جديرة بالذكر والبحث والتمحيص.

في المحكمة العسكرية 8 تموز

1949
هذه الملاحظة كانت تتعلق بشعارات الحزب من رايته التي تتوسطها الزوبعة مع اللونين الأحمر والأسود، مما كان يعطي شبه تطابق مع ألوان العلم النازي.

إذا أضفنا إلى ذلك الملابس والتحية وبعض الظواهر الأخرى التي كان يتمظهر بها الحزب النازي، لوجدنا شبه تطابق. ومع إضافة كلمة القومي الاجتماعي، يصبح الأمر كأنه نسخة معدلة للحزب النازي.

لا أخفي أنني في شبابي كنت ضحية لهذا الخلط في المظاهر قبل أن أطّلع على فكر سعادة. لكن بعد الاطلاع على فكره، وجدت المفارقات الكبيرة الصادمة.
أولاً، فكر سعادة هو فكر غاص في التاريخ والجغرافيا السورية وفي المجتمع السوري بشكل عميق ودقيق ولم يكن ناقلاً لمجرد أفكار قومية كانت تتداول في تلك المرحلة التاريخية.
ثانياً، إنّ سعادة لم يرتكز في مقولاته القومية إلى أيّ نظرية عنصرية تتعلق بنوع من البشر، لا بالعلاقة الجينية ولا بالتفوق العرقي ولا بالخصوصية البيضاء، ولا حتى بالجذور الأصولية لتاريخ مكونات المجتمع السوري. كان سعادة خارج كل هذه المواضيع، بل كان عالماً اجتماعياً سياسياً بامتياز. درس ما يمكن أن أسمّيه جيولوجيا الطبقات المتراكمة للحضارة السورية عبر التاريخ. ضم فيها النشاط الاجتماعي الحضاري لكل من سكن وأقام، أو حتى مرّ مرور الكرام وأثّر بنهضة الحضارة السورية. هذا العلم ينطبق على كل الحضارات المتلاقحة والمتتابعة التي تشكل صيروة الحضارة الإنسانية.
ثالثاً، قومية سعادة لم ترتبط بعرق ولا حتى بلغة. فاللغات تتابعت وتلاحقت على مدى امتداد الحضارة السورية والمجتمع السوري. فالسريانية كما الآرامية كانت مستقبلة ومتلاقحة مع اللغة العربية، ورغم أنها سبقتها حضوراً في المجتمع السوري، إلا أنها أغنتها، وما زالت آثارها حتى اليوم.
خامساً، كان سعادة ينظر إلى القومية كحركة إنسانية ارتقائية ومحكوم عليها للبقاء أن تكون حرة أولاً وغير مستعمرة أو مستتبعة. وبالتالي نشر فكر الاستقلال والحرية في مجتمعه مقاومةً للاستعمار، كما نشر فكر التغيير والانتفاض على الواقع المتحجر أو الرجعي والقيام بالعمل الثوري الضروري للتغيير، فاستنهض القوة فينا التي لو فعلت لغيّرت وجه التاريخ.


سادساً، يسجل لسعادة «الزعيم» أنه كان من الرواد الأوائل لتفصيل والتحذير من الخطر الصهيوني، وحرض على أهمية التصدي له قبل أن يستفحل في السيطرة على المنطقة، وتنبه بفكر وقّاد ويقظ واستشرافي لمن سماهم يهود الداخل.

وكم كانت هناك أحداث لاحقة صادقة وساطعة من خلال تعاون قوى عديدة في الجغرافيا السورية وفي محيطها بالتعامل علناً أو سراً مع العدو، حتى إنّ البعض قاتل معه ومن أجله ضد مجتمعه وأمته.
سابعاً، يسجّل لسعادة أنه قارب المسألة الطائفية بشكل دقيق وشخّص مخاطر هذا المرض، في حين أنّ أحزاباً علمانية كانت تدّعي امتلاك النظرية العلمية، اكتفت بنقل المرويات والنظريات الغربية المتعلقة بالصراع الطبقي، التي قد تكون صحيحة في مجتمعات صناعية لا تنخرها الطائفية، لكنّها تناست خصوصية منطقتنا وابتلاءها بهذا المرض، ألا وهو الطائفية.
ثامناً، يسجّل لسعادة أنه استحضر مقولات غابت عن كبار علماء الدين الذين كانوا وما زالوا غارقين بالتبشير ليس لدينهم بل أيضاً لمذهبهم، فطرح نظرية الإسلام برسالتيه، المحمدية والمسيحية، وهي نظرية قرآنية ابراهيمية، غابت عن منظور وعن خطاب العديد من علماء الدين، فأعاد بذلك الوحدة والألفة بين الديانتين بالإشارة إلى جذورهما المشتركة.
تاسعاً وهي بنظري من أهم ما تفرد به سعادة وخاصة في عصرنا الحالي، بفضل العلوم الحديثة والفوارق بين المادة والطاقة، بين ما هو صلب وملموس وما هو في حيز الأنوار، بفضل علوم الفيزياء الكونتية، فتحدث سعادة عن «المدرحيات» وشدد على أهمية الجمع بين الروحانيات والماديات بحيث يبقى التوازن الفكري والعقائدي عند الإنسان.
أمام عظمة هذا المفكر،

نجد أن المظهريات من شعارت ولباس ورايات وشعائر كانت أولاً العائق الأساسي لحكم البعض وممن لم يقرأوه أن يحكموا عليه بأنه فكر نازي.
سعادة أغنى الفكر ليس فقط السوري، بل العالمي أيضاً بنظريات جديرة.

من ملف : 70 عاماً على استشهاده: أنطون سـعادة الآن وهنا

Is Lebanon political system immune to radical non-violent revolts?

Posted on June 24, 2011

Has anyone seen a swan (baja3) physically? In the flesh, or even flying or walking? 

If you are asked “what is the color of a swan?”  I bet your answer is “White, obviously”. 

Actually, a black swan was identified a few years ago.  Is it possible to eventually identify a multicolored swan?

You might say that finding a black swan, or even a tribe of black swans, or a mixture of black and white swans stand to reason, but is it feasible to have a green, blue… swan?  You might respond that genetic engineering can produce whatever colored swan you desire as a pet…

Why do you think all of us believed that a swan must be white, and nothing but white?  Most of us have not seen a swan, except in pictures, movies or documentaries; we might not even be able to identify a swan from a duck if the bird is not named…

Even nature, which changes slowly and its trends can be mostly predicted, has the potential of surprising us with rare events, a few of them catastrophic.  

We got in the habit of expecting frequent disasters from man-designed and man-made systems, within a few years of their applications and usage by people…

The variability in living creatures and the behaviors of users are a thousand folds more numerous than variability in nature.  Wouldn’t you be appalled in total disbelief to hear any designer of systems claiming that the product is definitely designed and manufactured to be entirely controlled and managed according to users’ satisfaction, safety, and health?

The teams of designers of many professions such as scientists, engineers, psychologist, legal professionals… are aware of two things:

First, there will be frequent minor malfunctions to the system in terms of financial loss, safety and health causalities, but these malfunctions can be controlled and fixed.

Second, any system contains rare catastrophic malfunctions that will eventually occur (doud al khal minho wa fih) and predicting these rare events is very challenging and out of control and management. 

When you hear of economic-safety analysis trade-off of a system, bear in mind that the study concerns the number of casualties and the financial cost that owners (more frequently the State or the tax payers) will have to set aside for these calamitous eventualities.

The funny part is that:

First, no money is ever set aside by the private shareholders for these catastrophes and the States or tax-payers will eventually cover up the expenses.

Second, transparency and full disclosure to the general public is never disseminated widely, if ever published.

Third, the public and communities in most countries have No Say in the design and decision-making processes of vast man-made systems.

Fourth, no man-made system has instituted an independent specialized and dedicated team responsible of gathering data and analysing statistics of the various malfunctions.  Most malfunctions are barely reported and serious hazardous events are dusted-off under the carpet:  No read, never happened!

Do you know that the UN agency for health is forbidden to collect and report statistics on nuclear disaster consequences?  That the atomic UN agency is not to share statistics with other UN agencies concerned with health and safety of world population?

Nassim Nicholas Taleb, a mathematician by formation wrote  “The Black Swan:  The power of the unpredictable” and “Savage hazard”. 

Taleb was initially trying to explain the financial crisis since he is in the financial business.  The theory is fine and explains many fluctuations in man-made designs, for example the international financial system.

The problem emerges when Taleb ventures to extend his theory to the current “Arab” revolts and Arab political systems.  The is no doubt that political structures are essentially man-made designs and that the current acceptable varieties as within the realm of “How a democratic political system satisfies the criteria of the Western system democratic types.”

Taleb contends that since governments in Lebanon take turn, for example representing “opposition alliances”, as in Italy, the inherent and natural fluctuations in the system instability are resolved naturally.

Basically and literally, Taleb claimed that Lebanon political structure is immune to drastic revolts , on the ground that dictator regimes fall badly because the system try hard to control minor legitimate discontents, and consequently, the system is fragile when any major revolt strikes unexpectedly.

Either Taleb (Lebanese of origine)  is using selective memory, or he is faking not to be that familiar with the history of Lebanon’s political structure.

I suspect that Taleb confused catalysts with causes in the case of Lebanon, a confusion he frequently warned against, in analyzing the cases of the “Arab Spring” revolts and the financial crisis.

First, since independence in 1943, Lebanon officially recognized two failed internal coup d’etats, one in 1949 and another in 1961 (both done by the Lebanese-based Syria National Social party).  Lately, Lebanon witnessed a minor failed coup d’etat at the ministry of communication, because a private interest wanted to conserve its mobile communication business.

Second, Lebanon witnessed two officially recognized civil wars, one in 1958 and another one in 1975 that lasted 17 years.

Since the end of the civil war in 1991, Lebanon experienced a major military coup d’etat in 2008 that started in the Palestinian camp of Nahr el Bared around Tripoli:  The army needed 11 months to overcome the uprising of the Islamist salafists Jund al Sham, and hundreds of fallen martyrs and handicapped soldiers.

Beirut experienced a quick military coup in 2007 by Hezbollah, as the government attempted to control land communication lines.

The war of 2006 against Israel was actually a military coup perpetrated by the Lebanese government to control Hezbollah’s military might.

Third, Italy has true political parties with programs and policies.  The election laws in Italy are among the fairest and most equitable in the western States.  Frequent changes in governments didn’t prevent Italy to continue being among the leading economic powers in the world.

Italy is very generous in investing in the poorer nations and its grants are relied upon in most States around the Mediterranean Sea basin.  Italy has many contingents in the various UN peace-keeping forces…

Where as, for example, Lebanon is practically a Non-State country or a pseudo-State since its independence.  The 18 religious sects represent the main de-facto powers and also by law to exercising political influence.  Civil status of every “citizen” is run and administered by the officially recognized religious sects that own more than 50% of the land.  Every religious sect is backed by over three confessional “political parties”.

The two historically secular political parties, the Communist and the Syrian National Social parties, were denied participation in the Parliament via biased and tailored-made election laws and procedures.

The Syrian National Social party was recently permitted to enter the parliament, carried on the shoulders of other main confessional parties. 

The multi-theocratic system, backed by the financial institutions that lend Lebanon governments to cover budget deficit, have vested interests in prohibiting the constitution of any viable and sustainable modern State governing system.

Fourth, Lebanon lacks sustainable public institutions and any long-term programs and policies.  The only benefit the citizen enjoys is a mere passport.  There exist no serious governance for the people to march against and demand reforms.

Was Taleb aware of the actual conditions and situation in Lebanon for him to categorize Lebanon as falling in line within the “stable” political systems and immune to radical revolts as Italy?

The hot season has started in the northern hemisphere, and the Spring Revolt might cool off a bit.  In Lebanon, we missed the spring upheavals that swept the “Arab” world, but we planted the seed of a fresh drastic non-violent revolt for the next spring season.

The youth in Lebanon organized five marches in various cities in Lebanon demanding change in the confessional political structure.

Next Spring, the revolt will still be non-violent, but the target and purpose of the revolt will not be a matter of a reform here and another there.  The traditional “leaders” have demonstrated that they refuse to establish a functioning State for all “citizens”:  Lebanon has been run by Non-State governments, or care-taker governments.

The Youth Movement for Change must be ready for the dawn of the next spring season: It must start doing serious due diligence. For example,

1.  Specialized teams have to dig-up and dust-off the policies and programs stored in the basements of ministries.  The goal of reviewing and revising already studied programs is: “A political system from the people to the people”.

2. The Lebanese have to feel they are true citizens with equal rights under the law.

3. The Lebanese have to enjoy fair and equitable election laws that allow common people to accede to decision-making positions.

4. Laws have to be revised for citizens, regardless of genders, race, or religious affiliation, to have fair opportunities to all political positions and job opportunities in the public and private institutions and enterprises.

5. The Constitution has to be re-written to separate religion from civil power and responsibility…

Radical changes are possible: There are no other alternatives to patching up a rotten political and social structure.

It is not feasible to move on with small incremental reforms under the power of the ferocious religious and financial oligarchies that have been dominating our lives and subjugating us to constant instability and indignities.

We have grown up to be mature and responsible adult “citizens”.  Lebanon is Not immune to drastic revolts, and the next revolution will be successful!

Note 1: Nassim Taleb, a mathematician, was a trader and worked for 20 years as consultant to large investment banks in New York and London. He created Empirica LLC for trading.  He is engineering professor at the polytechnic institute at the University of New York.

Note 2: This article was posted 9 years ago. Currently, Lebanon is under a total bankruptcy at all levels: State, banks, Central Bank, financial and economy. Lebanon is going through drastic calamities: the electric-magnetic atomic pulse devastation of the Port of Beirut, and a lingering Covid-19 pandemics. 75% of the Lebanese are poor and no government is to be agreed upon.

A chapter in this book

Note: This piece was posted on Fb and the name of the author is indeterminate, just “Levantin”. Actually, I had posted a novel on WordPress.com in 2008, related to the Near East and Mount Lebanon titled “Rainbow over the Levant” and set in the 15th century during the Mamluk empire. The name of the main hero is named Antoun: is it a coincidence?

Un nouvel extrait de mon “Levantin”, où l’on voit Antoine Catafago invité à la chasse au faucon de l’émir Bachir Chehab II, dans les montagnes du Chouf (Mont-Liban) entourant le palais de Beiteddine…

“Le lendemain, l’émir avait invité tous ses convives à se joindre à son passe-temps favori, la chasse au faucon. C’était son privilège et celui des cheikhs féodaux qui l’accompagnaient, soit une cinquantaine de cavaliers juchés sur leurs montures magnifiquement harnachées.

Tous les seigneurs, druzes et maronites, étaient là à la tête de leurs suites, accourus des quatre coins du Mont-Liban pour faire allégeance à l’émir.

Les Nakad et les Joumblatt du Chouf, les Abillama du Metn, les Khazen du Kesrouan, chaque clan caracolait fièrement, oriflammes claquant au vent et rank gravés sur les boucliers.

Plus d’un millier de paysans des deux confessions avaient en outre été requis pour l’occasion et postés sur les hauteurs, autour du point où Bachir avait pris position.

Position est d’ailleurs un grand mot. En fait, il était allongé sur un divan recouvert de tissus précieux, fumant la pipe qui ne le quittait jamais, entouré de serviteurs surveillant la douzaine de magnifiques faucons alignés sur un perchoir, lui-même s’occupant de celui dressé sur son poing droit protégé par un épais gant de cuir.

La battue pouvait commencer. Sur un signal du maître de chasse, les paysans resserrent progressivement le cercle en battant les broussailles afin de faire lever le gibier.

Chaque fois qu’une perdrix s’envolait, l’émir lançait un faucon à ses trousses et il était rare qu’il revint bredouille, à la grande satisfaction de son maître.

La bête était aussitôt saignée et sa cervelle donnée en récompense au rapace.

La chasse avait duré une bonne partie de la journée jusqu’à ce que Bachir, las, ordonne le retour au palais. Plus de cent cinquante perdrix avaient été prises et distribuées aux invités de l’émir, à ses féodaux et aux gens du palais.

Antoine y avait passé une autre nuit, avant de prendre congé de son illustre hôte et de s’en retourner à Saïda. Certes, il avait été impressionné par ce qu’il avait vu et devait admettre que le spectacle de la cour de Bachir se pavanant dans les altières montagnes du Chouf avait quelque chose de grandiose.

Mais Antoine ne pouvait s’empêcher de se demander si la puissance affichée par l’émir n’avait pas pour but de dissimuler le fait que, désormais, il ne devait son pouvoir au Liban qu’au bon vouloir de Muhammad Ali.

Late Oriana Fallaci visions are as senile as those of John’s

Posted on June 21, 2010

Note: I decided to abridge a previous article denouncing the rambling of late Oriana Fallaci against Muslims and comparing the new extremist factions behavior as resembling St. John’s apocalyptic vision.

Oriana Fallaci is an Italian journalist turned writer; she was dying of cancer when she published her last book “Fallaci interviews Fallaci” followed by “Apocalypse”. 

Fallaci was a very liberal personality most of her life, defending the oppressed, until she turned sour and dissatisfied with the state of affairs perpetrated by the slaughtering of foreign hostages by Muslim extremists in Russia, Iraq and Afghanistan. 

Yes, Fallaci was furious that most of the recent terrorist activities in Europe such as in Spain, Italy, France, Holland and Russia were perpetrated by Muslims. (Until the far-right movements in these countries took over the terrorist activities)

Fallaci practiced selective amnesia in this book to avoid mentioning the genocides and terrorist activities in former Yugoslavia that were perpetrated by Christians, Catholics and Orthodox, and the daily terrorism in Iraq among the Muslims sects of Sunni and Shia.  

Fallaci went as far as supporting anyone, even Nazis or fascists, as long that the political program was to stop Muslim’ immigration to Europe and to never provide them with the legitimacy of a European citizenship. 

Fallaci ended her career by lashing out at legislations that permit homosexuals and lesbians to officially marry and adopt children “because it is a sin” and contrary to human procreation process. 

Oriana Fallaci had made up her mind that there are no moderate Muslims, lest they are Muslims by birth but are no longer practicing  believers: simply because the Koran is the Koran and there is no way to interpret the Sourates to coincide with civil laws in the western nations. 

The vehement attitude of Fallaci toward Islam stems from two premises:

First, all of the terrorist attacks in the World are perpetrated by Muslims, and

Second, the practices of Muslims’ behavior in the Western World are based on the teaching of the Koran which cannot be reconciled with the rational civil laws in the western countries they live in.

 I have responded on these two premises in my previous article and will focus on the alternative apocalyptic versions.

Fallacy used St. John’s apocalyptic vision to offer her version of Islam as the Monster and enliven her ejaculations and substantiate her stand, as if a flawed concept can be clarified by a more obscure premise. 

In St. John’s apocalyptic version a Monster with seven heads and ten horns would emerge from the sea and the Beast on land would execute all the Monster’s orders until the an angel descend from heaven and lock the Monster and punish the Beasts.

Thus, the Monster is Islam and the Beast is represented by the European liberals and leaders who are trying to appease Muslims and exhorting them to moderation by dangling carrots instead of raising the heavy sticks.

The Monster is to emerge from the sea, though the Muslim World is mostly a vast desert until now.  Either the 100-years old St. John was completely dehydrated, and thus seeing mirages, or he had a vision of another Ice Age period and thus, wet continents have exchanged climatic states, or Fallaci was getting out of whack and delving into uncharted territories.

For the time being, the USA is the only superpower located smack between the Pacific and the Atlantic.

The USA has waged two World Wars and invaded Asia and Europe and the only superpower to have landed troops in all continents and are still present, even after the end of the last “hot” world war more than 60 years ago.

The USA has many heads in finance, economy, technology, sciences, mass media, music and movie production, agriculture, and a military supremacy with extra three horns in space exploration, maritime hegemony, and genetic experimentation. 

The Beast can be represented by the world States leaders executing the US Administrations orders, then the intelligencia and educated people interpreting favorably the misinformation that the successive US administrations are propagating to spread democracy by pre-emptive wars.

Many leaders are emulating the Beast, either out of fear of economic embargo, sanctions, military reprisals, ordered terrorist activities, or because of local politics, or allegiance to the neo-conservative program. 

So far, many nations have joined the Bush Junior war on Iraq without the UN approval , and most of them have ended up retrieving their troops after seeing the light or their leaders failing in elections. 

The three main Beasts to shoulder this pre-emptive war were Blair of Britain, Saudi Kingdom and Israel. 

I will only focus on the Saudi Monarchy/Theocracy Beast.

Wolfowitz has said after the US troops entered Iraq: “Now, we can get our troops out of Saudi Arabia, after twenty years, without fear of destabilizing the region.” 

There is no doubt that Saudi Kingdom not only encouraged the US with its plan to invade Iraq but also financed this campaign directly and indirectly. 

The Saudi Wahhabi sect caste was first, getting revenge on the Iraqis for giving their supremacy over the other castes in Saudi Arabia, the scare of their life in 1993: Saddam  invaded Kuwait and approached the Saudi Kingdom and

Second, the Wahhabi caste was encouraging the US to get its troops out of Saudi Arabia because Bin Laden was recruiting heavily on the basis of the “infidel Christians” spreading their impurity in the land,

Third, because the Saudi Monarchy and Wahhabi caste are completely reliant on the US to maintain their social structure, and

Fourth to keep communist China influence out of the Iraq, Iran, and Syria.

The Monster can be named; it is the neo-conservatives, Evangelical “Christians” in the USA.  They are an amalgam of dozens of Baptist and Protestant sects with the single main belief in the process of how the Second Coming of their Messiah is going to happen.

The neo-conservatives are clamoring that all the Jews should be relocated in Israel and then, after the Jews re-build their famous Temple in Jerusalem, they will launch a targeted crusade toward Israel, with the intention of Christianizing the new heretics of Jews; this campaign would be effective and completed and only then the Messiah would feel comfortable to come back!

The odds are the neo-conservatives would repeat Titus’ feat of destroying the newly erected Temple and scatter the Jews all over the world.  If the Jews believe that the support of the USA is free of charge then they are under the spell of the demon; the Jews will have to pay back everything with high interest too.         

 Fallaci had a most striking interpretation of why the intelligent Oussama Ben Laden decided to televise an appearance a couple of days before the second Presidential US election of Bush Junior.  Ben Laden warned the Americans that if they re-elect Bush then he will have no option but to repeat another deadly strike. 

Bin Laden knew that his speech will galvanize the arrogant US citizens into shedding their apathy for voting and move in mass to voting heavily for Bush against the favorite Kerry. 

The Bush Administration needed Bin Laden alive to sustain their propaganda against Islam and linger a while longer in Iraq.  Bin Laden needed Bush in power to recruit heavily among the anti-American Muslims.

This is the ultimate deal between the staunchest extremist Beasts to wreak havoc in the world and create a definite cultural clash between the Christian West and the Islamic World.

The current generally rigid Islam is a major factor to the prevention of effective communication between the West and the Muslim World but it is not the only main factor. 

Most of the Muslim World is organized in Caste Systems (closed religious autonomous sects) due to the influence of India and the domination of the successive Mongol Empires to the whole region for over ten centuries. 

The most effective venue is not to lambaste mercilessly Islam but to aid our region to gradually break out of our caste structures so that we may communicate internally as a society and then open up to the West later on as people free to speak and publish our opinions without undue internal harassments.

This gradual change is not meant to impose democracy by pre-emptive wars but to allow our societies to invent alternative open systems that work in each Middle East States.

Currently, a substitute Beast will be propagandized: China.

I could not help but write a short poem related to the same theme.  Worst, I could not help but sharing it with you; it is titled “Redundant Prophets“:

Tormented youths, hearing voices, experiencing apocalyptic nightmares,

Seeking desperately a corner in a desert,

Preferably when available nearby,

In desolate locations, in complete isolation,

To exorcise their dark dreams,

Their oppressive loneliness, the demons in their soul,

And to find peace of mind.

Archangel Gabriel materialized to a few of them,

Talking to them in a centaur voice,

Vast and reaching the skies,

Or plainly in a human form, surrounded with blinding light.

Gabriel would not let them in peace,

He would harass them during their wretched life,

Urging them to fear the Unique God,

And pray and glorify God’s name, and proselytize in God’s name.

Most were not as lucky in fame,

And have never seen a divine apparition;

They did pass that critical phase in life, in good mental stability,

And reduced level of exacerbated anxiousness.

The difference between Prophets and young crazies

Can be traced to the genetic laziness of Gabriel;

Or most likely to the current glut in redundant prophets.

“The Apocalypse” by late Oriana Fallaci

Posted on October 24, 2008 (and written in November 8, 2007)

“Entretien avec moi-meme” and “L’Apocalypse” 

Oriana Fallaci was born in 1929 in Florence and died of cancer of the esophagus in 2006, as her mother, father, and another sister died. 

She was a journalist and covered many wars in Vietnam and the Middle East and managed to interview Khomeini for 6 hours and turned to a writer.

Of her publications we can list: “La force de la raison”, “La rage et l’orgueil”, “Un homme”, “Inchallah”, “Lettre a un enfant jamais ne”, “Entretiens avec l’Histoire”, and “La vie, la guerre et puis rien”.

Fallaci had a refuge in Manhattan for 10 years and stopped publishing anything and was treating her cancer when the Twin Towers were taken down. The rumors spread that Al Qaeda hijacked the airplanes.

She remembered seeing Ben Laden in the 1980s in Beirut when the Israeli war planes imploded a high rise to the ground and conjectured that the way the towers went down was an exact revenge of Bin Laden two decades later.

The attacks on the Twin Towers forced Fallaci to feverishly go back to write about current dangerous phenomena and stored her 800-pages novel she was writing in the drawer, waiting for an opportune time to work on her “baby”, but never got around to finish and publish it.

She wrote in her previous “Rage and Pride” that there come times in life where keeping silent is a fault and speaking out an obligation, a civil duty, a moral defiance, a categorical imperative we cannot escape from.

She felt it impossible to stay quiet and apathetic and thus, facing the enormity of the danger she was forced to resume writing. 

Fallaci wrote a long article in 3 weeks and lived on coffee and cigarettes and her crying was dry because of a congenital nervous case that occurred to her in 1943 when she was about 14 years old. The allies were bombing Florence and she got scared and started to cry and her dad slapped her hard saying: “young girls do not cry” (go figure, her scared dad reacted nervously and uttered a stupid sentence).

Fallaci fell in love once in her life with the Greek activist Alekos Panagulis who was assassinated at the age of 38 and she wrote a book about Panagulis titled “A man“.

Alekos suffered 5 years of prison in seclusion and when he was freed he cried in front of the Parthenon and repeated “Bitch of democracy, but it is democracy after all”.

Fallaci doesn’t see any other alternative political system but democracy, though it has many flaws and is unable to bring stability quickly when major upheavals strike a nation.

She never returned to Greece because the authorities removed the expensive wedding ring that she inserted in the finger of the deceased when they exhumed the body. She kept raging against the “falaka” such as hitting the sole of the feet that she says the Greek police have inherited from 4 centuries of Ottoman hegemony in Greece.

Oriana dedicated her introduction to the memories of the many foreigners who were kidnapped and slaughtered by the Muslim fanatics in Iraq and Afghanistan and to the victims in the school of Beslan by the Chechen and to the Danish Theo Van Gogh the director of a short movie on the status of women in the Muslim World.

Her previous volume “The Force of Reason” was in memories of the Madrid train victims.

She unfurled a huge Italian flag over her window to remind the Italian to be proud of their country instead of the rainbow flag of the European Union, along with two tiny US flags to thank America for deposing Saddam Hussein and fighting “Islam terrorism” and for saving Europe during the two World Wars.

Oriana was furious when her physician suggested not to mention explicitly to others that she is suffering from cancer. Most people who died of cancer were referred to as dying from incurable disease

She didn’t think that people would shun her, since cancer is not contagious and not the results of sinful activities, but people were scared to approach cancer afflicted victims.

The atrocities committed by the US forces at Abou Ghraib prison in Iraq was frustrating and she felt betrayed, offended and lied to because Western civilization cannot swallow acts of brutalities against helpless and chained prisoners; she took comfort that the perpetrators were legally judged, convicted and imprisoned.

She calls the communists in Italy the caviar left and that the left and right parties the two faces of the same coin as two soccer teams running hard to grab the ball of Power and they are homogenous; the only dirty and backward right that still exists is Islam and those sons of Allah.

She fumes that the crucifix is taken off the school rooms and Christmas crib is no longer installed in, so that not to offend the Moslems. Oriana wonders: “Who is supposed to get integrated, us or them?”

She resent the new laws that allow immigrants to vote which will alter the way the European and Italian live.

Democracy is based on the two concepts of equality and liberty and Oriana believes that people likes equality and are ready to give up on some of their liberty. Equality is understood to be legal equality under the law of the land, but it does not transfer to moral and mental equality, and equality in value and merit. Individuality and competition are what make live worth living and fighting for.

Fallaci rages against the Italian Communist party that infiltrated every municipality and the court rooms and is over lording its monolithic dogma and cultural hegemony as filtered to them by former Communist Russia. The communists have appropriated the Italian resistance to Nazi Germany although they didn’t react until the American forces were chasing out the occupying forces; worst, they intimidated and killed many Italian national resistance fighters such as Justice and Action party of which Oriana was member when an adolescent.

She lambasted Sigrid Hunke who wrote “The sun of Allah shines over the West” and her activism at smuggling African immigrants to Italy. The support that Hunke accords to the enemy of Fallaci culture and Christian civilization exacerbates her failing health.

Although Fallaci is atheist she would like to believe that Europe is a Christian culture and was upset when the European Constitution refused to state that the religion of Europe is Christianity. 

She certainly is furious at the Italian successive government acting more royal than France and Germany in matters of the European Union laws and legislations that are emptying the national character and specific culture of Italy.

She admits that she is a manichist, a cult that Mani spread in the 3rd century in Iran and reached Europe; in that the concepts of Bad and Good are totally separate entities and no shades should alter the process of distinguishing between them and taking firm stands.

Half of the interview with herself is antagonizing most of the Italian leaders and political parties for homogenizing their doctrines and not exhibiting any serious differences in politics and thus, rendering the democratic process void of any meaning.

Fallaci pinched Berlusconi ears in her two previous books but she claimed that she will not become another Maramaldo who killed an already dying man Francesco Ferruchi in Florence in 1530.

Berlusconi did not have much education and he could not believe that the Italians elected him Prime Minister, though he is a very intelligent man in business and one of the richest according to Forbes.  Even his numerous mass media television channels were not sucking up to him because he was too proud and over confident to attract the right counselors but opted to be surrounded by “yes men”. His worst enemies are of his own coalition and they have been blackmailing him all the time in order for him to remain in power.

Fallaci does not like Bush and she thinks that he lacks education and is antipathetic but much better than the insipid Al Gore. Bush is a leader because he can take stands and stick by his decision and, mostly, because he has moral and would not humiliate his wife with extra marital activities like Clinton.

Bush is not two faced and unreliable like Kerry who flaunts his 3 purple hearts that he got from fighting in Vietnam and yet condemn wars without relinquishing his war medals.

Oriana really dig Bush’s wife Laura because she resemble exactly to Fallaci mother in looks and in manners.  Oriana is starting to like Hillary Clinton after she learned that Hillary loved her book “Rage and Pride” and does not stop commending it to her acquaintances to read but she didn’t considers Hillary sympathetic before.

Fallaci considers that there are only 3 leaders in the second half of the 20th century who are Wojtyla (the previous Pope), Khomeini, and Ben Laden (the Napoleon of Islam and the prophet of darkness).

Ben laden does not need to harangue the masses but can make others execute his orders from a distance and she would gladly interview him, even though she had swore never to interview anyone anymore.  She would dwell on Ben Laden childhood and upbringing because she does not think that religion was the main factors to his megalomania.

Ben Laden was a normal adolescent, frequenting bars, drinking whisky and dating girls in abundance and bought his wardrobe from Bond Street.  She strongly believes that Ben Laden anger at the Saudi Royal family was a result of them kicking him out of the palace once King Faisal was assassinated.  Ben Laden’s father was the closest counselor to Faisal and the (Saudi Wahhabi sect caste) disliked this infringement to the rules.

Oriana appreciates the contribution of Wojtyla for the crumbling of the Soviet Union and for continuing to write at the age of 84 and for keeping up with his heavy travel schedule.  She blames the Pope for doing a lot of harm for Christianity and the West because he pacified with the Moslems.

Fallaci condemned the war on Iraq and worried that the end result would be establishment of an Islamic Republic of mullah and imams; but she supported Bush once it started. 

Unfortunately, terrorism has increased and deaths are accumulating for an obscure result because democracy has to be won by the people, and to be won it has to be wanted, and to be wanted people has to know what it is.  Thus, since the Iraqi people do not know what democracy is, then they certainly do not want it.

The Iraqis as Muslims deeply believe that destiny is not in their hands but coming from Allah. Even the educated people in Iraq proclaim that they want democracy “Islam style”. (Oriana didn’t know that the Iraqi people were the most educated and the highest readers of books)

The UN is an impotent organization ruled by many members of Islamic states and so far the Janjaweed, the pro-ultra-Muslims of the Sudan government have killed 50,000 Christian blacks and almost one million displaced to camps in Tchad, and in Kalma; the Sudan has a flourishing slave trade of girls raffled during the Janjaweed forays.

The Americans are providing the humanitarian food and the EU refuses to call what is happening as genocide and prefers to label it a complex civil war situation.  Kofi Annan is not sympathetic to her and is two faced and that is why Blair didn’t trust him and had his phone calls intercepted.  She is obfuscated that the UN declared the wall that Sharon built on Palestinian lands as illegalthough she would urge Sharon to erase the sections of walls in Palestinian lands proper and reimburse for the damage to the private Palestinian properties.

Her logic considers that anti-Americanism feelings is attached to anti-West behavior which is synonymous to pro-Islamism and thus anti-Semitism.

Fallaci loathes Arafat like the plague and describes him as a despot and totally corrupted who amassed over $200 millions and used to send his wife in Paris $12,000 a day for her expenses.  Arafat was able to control the other Palestinian factions because he held the string to the purse.  Fidel Castro has $150 millions according to Forbes.

As for the state of affairs with the adolescents in Italy Fallaci likes to refers to Plato in a section of his 8th volume of “The Republic“:

When a people, thirsty for liberty, find “echansons” that deliver whatever he wishes, to the point of drunkenness, it happens to calling despots the governments that are eager to satisfying these exigencies of citizens ever more exigent.

A disciplined individual is then decried as void of characters and servile. The scared father end up treating his offspring as equals and lose respect; the teacher refrains from reprimanding the students when they mock him; youth claims the same rights as the old and the latter submit to these claims in order not show severity. 

Under such a climate of “liberty” and in its name there vanish respect and consideration for anybody.  Within the womb of this kind of license germs and develop a bad grass: Tyranny”

Fallaci tried to glorify her old age because it is at this age that liberty might be attained; a privilege that younger people are striving all their life to grasp it. 

At old age, fear from judgments stops conditioning our behavior and we are no longer scared of the future because it is here already.  At old age useless desires, superfluous ambitions, and senseless chimeras are out the window.

At old age we are the wiser because we comprehend much better what were obscure through accumulated experience, information and reflection.  She said that she frequented death several times in her career that she has no fear at the idea of dying.

Oriana recalls asking the Emperor of Ethiopia Haile Selassie: “Have you any fear of death?” and the Emperor started screaming “What death?” and he chased her out to the park where a huge lion was eating beef steaks.  Though, as Anna Magnani said: “It is not fair to have to die since we were born anyway“.

Being able to survive so many years is the real miracle and the best gift of reaching old age.  Anyway, if there was no death then the word life would have no meaning.

The vehement attitude of Fallaci toward Islam stems from two premises:

First, all of the terrorist attacks in the Western World are perpetrated by Muslims, and

Second, the practices of Muslims behavior in the Western World are based on the teaching of the Koran which cannot be reconciled with the rational civil laws in the western countries they live in.

Fallacy used St. John’s apocalyptic vision to offer her version of Islam as the Monster and enliven her ejaculations and substantiate her stand, as if a flawed concept can be clarified by a more obscure premise

In St. John’s apocalyptic version, a Monster with 7 heads and 10 corns would emerge from the sea and the Beast on land would execute all the Monster’s orders until an angel descends from heaven and lock up the Monster and punish the Beast.

Thus, the Monster is Islam and the Beast is represented by the European liberals and leaders who are trying to appease Muslims and exhorting them to moderation by dangling carrots instead of raising the heavy sticks.

I generated two articles from this manuscript: “Are there moderate Muslims?” and “An alternative version of Fallaci interpretation of St. John’s apocalyptic vision”

Who is Josephine Peabody?

Posted on March 11, 2010

Scores of women fell in love with Gibran and vice versa, in the US and abroad (France, Egypt and Lebanon) and love letters on both sides kept the post office pretty busy.

May Ziadi, a Lebanese author who settled in Egypt and who was a deeply literate, polivalent and a female activist, and respected by the literate Egyptian circles. Gibran and Miss. Ziadi swapped all kinds of letters until his death. She didn’t travel to the US to ever meet with Gibran and she wrote in one of her latest letters: “I refuse to be a mere flower in your garden

The Lebanese author Salim Mujais published “Letters of Khalil Gibran to Josephine Peabody”.

It is an Arabic book and the author decided on a new style: Gibran 82 letters are translated and Josephine diary “Psychic” is included, date to date, so that you are reading a joint diary of two people in love with no interference of the author’s opinions or comments.

When Josephine poems relates to Gibran, they are included in the daily commentary.  In addition, when Gibran’s works relate to Josephine, excerpts are attached to the joint diary.  It is unfortunate that Josephine’s letters to Gibran are still not found, although Gibran’s letters were gathered by Josephine.

Gibran (Jubran) sent her a drawing through his mentor F.H. Day with these words “To the dear unknown Josephine Peabody”.

In the meantime, Gibran had traveled to Lebanon to learn Arabic and French at the college of Hekmeh (Wise) in Beirut.  Three months later, Gibran receives an unexpected letter from Josephine.

The letter says, in weak English) something to the effect:

“Mr. Day showed me many of your drawings and paintings in his possession; we talked about you.  I felt ecstatic the whole day after seeing your drawings because I could understand you through them. 

I think your soul lives in a beautiful space.  This is the fate of people who can create beautiful things in arts; they enjoy complete happiness when they share their bread with others.  I live in an environment of noise in a crowded city.  I feel like a lost child seeking his true self.  Have you seen any deserts?  I think you listen to silence.  Forward me your news and I will tell you mine”

Gibran, still not mastering the English language, replied on Feb. 3, 1899 from Lebanon. The letter says: (words in brackets are as they were written)

“(When I received your letter) O, how happy, I was? How glad? So happy that the tongue of poor pen cannot put my joy in words. I feel (discontent) when I come to write (English), because I know not how to translate my thoughts as I want, but perhaps you (want) mind that, and I think I know enough to tell you that will keep your friendship in (midest) of my heart, and over that many miles of land and sea will always have a certain love for you and will keep the thought of you near my heart and will be no separation between you and my mind.  

You wrote in your letter “I always keep things of that sort” and for a certain thing I am just like camera and my heart is the plate. I will not forget when you spoke with me that night in Mr. Day’s exhibition.  I asked Mr. Day “Who is the lady in black?”. He said “She is miss (Beabody), a young poet and her sister is an artist”…

I wonder “do you ever sit in a dark silent room listening to the music of the rain so calm that is”… With this letter I send a little drawing for remembrance.”

The correspondence lasted till 1908.  Many letters are not dated and Josephine must have thrown away many letters during period of disagreement. Josephine died in 1922; she was married to Lionel Marx and had children.

Probably, Josephine was:

1. the first person to organize Gibran’s first drawing exhibition;

2. the first who compared Gibran drawings to Blake’s;

3. the first to translate his poems to English;

4. the first who wrote poems on Gibran;

5. the first woman in Gibran’s drawings and paintings;

6. The first woman hero and main character in Gibran written works.

Josephine Peabody was Gibran’s first true love and muse (his genie).

Josephine is the woman who made Gibran to experience love, pain, sorrows, chagrin, and ecstasy.

Born in 1874, Josephine started to publish poems in magazines at age 14.  She received a grant to study at Radcliff (1894-96).  Her first book is “Old Greek folk stories told anew, 1897”, then a book of poems “Wayfarers, 1898”.

In 1900, Josephine published a one part play “Fortune and Men’s eyes” and a poetic play “Marlowe, 1901”.  She taught at Wellesley till 1903.

Josephine Peabody married Lionel Marx and they moved to Germany where Lionel was teaching at a university.  The couple returned to Boston.

Josephine published her poetic play “The Wings” in 1907.  Josephine had her first daughter Allison in 1907 and she published a book of songs for children “Book of the Little Past” in July 1907.  

In 1909, she published the play “The Pied Piper” and won the Stratford award among 300 participants.

Josephine published “The Singing Man” in 1911 where she included the poem “The Prophet” that she had written around 1900 and in which she imagines Gibran’s childhood period.

In 1913, Josephine toured Europe, Egypt, Palestine, and Syria and published on her return “The Wolf of Gubbio”.  WWI generated her book of poems “Harvest Moon

Josephine didn’t meet Gibran again until 1914, while attending the play “The mask of the bird”.

In this month of February, Josephine invited Gibran to tea and showed him the album of her children. She had dinner with Gibran at Mrs Ford; and dinner at Edwin Robinson.

Gibran wrote to Mary Haskel “Josephine appears to belong to Cambridge and not the world. Josephine didn’t changeshe wore the same cloths

Josephine published her play “The chameleon” in 1918 and then “Portrait of Mrs. W” in 1922.  Josephine diary “Psychic” where she talks about Gibran is of 51 pages and span from December 1902 to January 1904.  She died in December 1922.

Gibran had to kill the “genie” of Josephine.

He wrote in an Arabic article titled “A ship in the fog”: “Hover over this white corps in white cloth amid white flowers the silence of time and the dread of eternity”

Note 1: Gibran was enamored (platonic) with several women much older than him, before he met Josephine Peabody.  For example, Louise Guiney (1861-1920) who was FH Day girlfriend; the artist Lilla Cabot Perry (1848-1933) who painted Gibran in Arabic attire (painting at Savannah museum); and the gifted photographer Sarah Choates Sears (1858-1935) who arranged to send many artists to Europe.

Note 2: East of USA in the early 20th century was very different from today.  People had this renaissance streak; they were polyvalent, spoke many languages, and traveled to Europe to acquire knowledge and arts.  People encouraged young foreigners with talents financially and with contacts.

Note 3: Gibran’s English was still tentative, and it will take him years to master this language, thanks to Mary Haskell who made it a point to edit all his English works. Gibran bequeathed his English work to Haskell after his death.

Note 5: Unfortunately, he missed to bequeath his Arabic works to May Ziadi. Miss. Ziadi would have spread Gibran works faster and wider in the Arabic speaking world and might have earned a new phase in her active life. Ziadi returned to Lebanon to be harassed by her relatives for her fortune, and even attempted to incarcerate her in a mental hospital.

“The Joke” by Milan Kundera (Book review, Written in March 22, 2007, before I started my blog)

Posted on October 21, 2008

Kundera was responsible for the incarceration of a citizen in the 1945 when he was a staunch communist.

He was young and his position might have changed and evolved, but it is a sign of his character and his writings do express a few of his apologies.

Ludvic Jahn was a bright student and played clarinet in Moravian folk bands. His is a staunch member of the communist party that came to power in Czechoslovakia after WWII and was attending university with prospect for higher responsibilities. 

He wrote a joke on a postcard for his girlfriend Marketa who was enjoying a “healthy atmosphere” at a training camp that says:

Optimism is the opium of the people! A healthy atmosphere stinks of stupidity! Long live Trotsky!”

Ludvic was expelled from both the university and the Party by his student colleagues; he had to do his two years military service as the enemy of the people in a brigade wearing black insignia.

He worked in the mines but was paid for his work unlike the patriots doing military service.

This brigade worked seven days a week with a one day pass every two weeks if the commander was pleased with their production and obedience. He met Lucie and fell in love with her.

Lucie left town without giving notice after she refused to have intercourse and without explaining her reluctance.

We learn later on that Lucie was with a gang in her hometown and that the gang chain-raped her, but kept hanging out with it until the police rounded up the gang for thievery.

Ludvic lived 15 years as a marginal with bitter needs for revenge on his friends who abandoned him, especially Zemaneck whom he thought would defend his case but turned out to be the most virulent opponent.

Ludvic returns to his hometown in order to meet Helena, the wife of Zemaneck, who was falling in love with him and didn’t know that her husband knew Ludvic or the schemes of the latter.

Ludvic wanted revenge on Zemaneck through his wife, but Zemaneck would not care less because he had another young girlfriend and going with the flow of the new generation who didn’t care of what happened during the early communist take over of power.

It dawned on Ludvic that it was too late to physically hit Zemanek: he should have done it when he was castrated from the Party instead of wasting 15 years in bitterness and failing to take care of the present.

The 3 harrowing days that Ludvic spent in his hometown opened his soul to new facts and new realities.

Ludvic has been rationalizing his behavior toward Lucie as “a function of his own situation” when he needed understanding and tenderness in his military service stint and, as adolescent behavior wearing masks to overcome their shyness and uncertainty, he failed to ask questions with the purpose of understanding the real Lucie and her predicaments.

Lucie used to gather flowers and roses from the cemetery to offer them to Ludvic when he was on leave; she used to stand outside the fence of the camp waiting for her Ludvic to steal a few minutes and talk with her.

Communism had the spirit of the great religious movements: it had religious gestures and feelings but remained empty and godless within.

Communism tried to supplant religious faith by adopting the same rites camouflaged in secular mass ceremonies and practiced excommunication extensively in the name of “the historical optimism of the victorious working class” and delivered by the youth instead of professional, matured, and responsible people.

The Marxist teachings were secular in origin, but the significance assigned them was similar to the significance of the Gospel and religious commandments. 

They have created a range of ideas that are practically untouchable, thus sacred.

For example, is the case of young Alexej who was banished to the black insignia brigade because his father stood trial as enemy of the people. He still thought and acted as a communist because “we are responsible for everything that goes in the camp” and he felt free enough to act like a communist by sending letters to the higher-ups condemning the camp commander’s behaviors as counterrevolutionary.

Alexej was twenty, an adolescent and his destiny hung on him like a giant’s clothes on a tiny body, and Alexej committed suicide by swallowing an overdose of medicines.  

Although communism was a cruel religion, it was better than the new era of mockery, skepticism, and the mob of youth, coarse, cynical, and nasty, without enthusiasm or ideals.

This mob of incomplete youth is compelled to play-act as fully grown, adopting forms, patterns, models that please and enact them; the more the youth is aware of his boyish appearance, the more fanatical his devotion to the role of superman and the more forced is his performance.

Kundera views youth as terrible and that history often was the playground for the immature Bonaparte, Nero, and the likes whose simulated passion and simplistic poses metamorphose into a catastrophic real reality.

As Ray Bradbury said in his novel Fahrenheit 451: “Those who don’t build must burn; it’s as old as history and juvenile delinquents.”

Note: Finished reading the book on Tuesday October 21, 2008

The Mastermind behind the success of French Revolution: Chaderlos de Laclos

Posted on October 23, 2014

Pierre-Ambroise Choderlos de Laclos (1741-1803) is famous for his book “The Dangerous Liaisons“. Many considered him a scandalous writer at par with the marquis de Sade or Restif de la Bretonne.

Very few knows that he was the mischievous brain behind the French Revolution that managed to clench victory and ripen its fruits.

Chaderlos de Laclos was the mastermind behind the massive women march from Paris to Versailles.

He figured out that unless the center of power (King and Constituent Assembly) transfer from Versailles to Paris then the revolution might falter.

Chaderlos de Laclos incorporated famous women who used to organize orgies such as Theroigne de Mericourt, and most importantly, transvestite men carrying weapons for the next phase of the march purpose.

As the women marched, the initial slogan was “We want bread“.

Actually, Chaderlos convinced his patron Duke Philip of Orleans to refrain from distributing wheat in Paris for a couple of days to give the impression that the King is failing in his duties. Duke Phillip of Orleans hated the King and the Queen and believed he was better for that position. He is better known in French history as “Equality Phillip

The King received a delegation of women and promised them to distribute wheat and bread immediately.

The women stayed overnight outside Versailles and the next day the slogan changed to “We want the King in Paris”

The transvestite men with weapons managed to infiltrate inside the Versailles walls and committed a slaughter hood of the surprised guards and almost broke inside the King and Queen quarters.

The King had a wake up call and decided to pleasure the masses and return with all his family to Paris.

La Fayette (the general who participated in the American revolution) was chief of the National Guards and secured the safe passage of the King to Paris.

From then on, the king and his family were practically prisoners to the revolutionaries and unable to leave Paris.

Born in Amiens, Chaderlos , as the second son, was destined to the sacerdotal. Luckily for him, the first son died and Chaderlos could join the military career. He opted for the artillery since he was excellent in math.

He slowly climbed the ranks due to lack of real battle engagements and was promoted Captain in 1771

For the next 17 years, he was still captain, but he took several sabbaticals in order to finish his book.

He married Marie-Soulange Dupre in 1786. She was 24 and he was 42. This was a love marriage that endured and they got 2 kids.

In 1788, after quitting the army, he sided and joined the party of the Duke of Orleans in Paris.

When La Fayette summoned the Duke to go to exile in London on temporary basis, due to his involvement in the women’s march, Chaderlos joined the Duke in exile.

Chaderlos would be promoted General by Napoleon in 1800 and he died of dysentery at Tarente. He was quickly buried in a common grave .

A few maxims of Chaderlos:

1. Hate is more clairvoyant and more ingenious than Love

2. I was taken by surprise to notice that we can feel pleasure by doing good deeds

3. Our ridicule increases proportionally the harder we defend it

4. For him, pleasing is a means. For her it is success itself

5. For man, infidelity is Not inconsistency

6. In love, we can permit excesses only with persons we plan to leave very soon

7. Nature extended constancy to man. And obstinate tendency to women

8. I love her too much to feel jealousy. I have taken the option to be proud of (her foibles)

9. A missed occasion can be recaptured. We never return after a precipitated demand (of marriage?)

10. It is good to accustom someone destined for great adventures by him getting the habit for great events.

Read: Gonzague Saint Bris “La Fayette”

From troubled Florida youth to the Israeli army?

Palestinian child in the crosshairs of a sniper rifle : Instagram image

Posted on February 21, 2013

Ali Abunimah posted on The Electronic Intifada this Feb.20/2013  “Stoned, naked, armed and dangerous…

The Israeli army claimed that the photograph of Mor Ostrovski, the now infamous Instagram image of a Palestinian child in the crosshairs of a sniper rifle that generated disgust around the world, was “a severe incident which doesn’t accord with the IDF’s spirit and values.

It is understandable that an occupation army that markets itself as the “most moral army in the world” would attempt such damage control. Israeli soldiers’ use of social media has given a unique insight into an “army” that functions more like a rabble – with soldiers misusing weapons, breaking laws, and expressing violent and extreme views and posting images of themselves doing it online. What of the repeated and successive pictures posted routinely by Israeli soldiers?

osher_finger_and_gun_up.jpg

Golani Brigade soldier Osher Maman, who came from a troubled youth in Florida, posts photos of himself breaking Israeli military law and playing with weapons in irresponsible ways. Source

Those who follow matters closely know that the photograph was an apt symbol for the Israeli army’s contempt for the lives of Palestinian children, as well as for the total impunity soldiers accused of crimes against Palestinian civilians enjoy. Even in terms of “misuse” of social media, it was no isolated incident.

osher_naked_gun_in_crotch.jpg

Gun play Source

A case in point is Osher Maman, another 20-year-old Israeli soldier currently enlisted in the “elite” Golani Brigade.

Maman’s Instagram account currently includes 549 images which show, among other things, images of him mishandling weapons and breaking military laws.

The earliest date from April 2012 and the most recent from today. An illustrative selection – with tags where he included them – are used throughout this post. Maman also expresses deeply racist and even genocidal views towards Palestinians and Arabs.

Maman, who grew up in Naples, Florida after his family left Israel a decade ago, made the news in 2006 when as a 14-year-old he brought a BB gun given to him by his parents to school and used it to threaten two girls.

Maman also has an adult criminal history with records of arrests in February 2011 and inMay 2011 for “trespassing on school grounds.”

“Hitman”

Osher Maman’s Facebook page, which features many of the same images that can be seen on his Instagram account but also goes back earlier, identifies him as a former student of Barron Collier High School in Naples, Florida, and uses the nickname “Eazybaby” which resembles the name of his Instagram account eazybaby310.

An Osher Maman was a member of the graduating high school class of 2010 according to the Naples Daily News on 5 June 2010.

naked_with_gun_and_cig.jpg

Source

Maman’s Facebook bio says: “From Israel to Miami to the I.D.F Kik: eazybaby310 An active assassin/hitman” and he identifies himself as a member of Barak, the 12th Battalion of the supposedly “elite” Golani brigade. This is corroborated by many images he has posted of weapons, uniforms and other military paraphernalia bearing the insignia of this battalion.

Maman wrote a message on Facebook on 13 August 2011:

“I’m leaving to the israeli army this monday, just wanted to say.. fuck the police, fuck barron collier high school and all the staff, fuck all the judges, fuck all you little hater faggots that blow up my fb and phone talking shit, fuck the bitches that cheated on me, fuck the virus i just got on my computer and whoever created it, fuck you fuck you fuck you, whos next…”

One year later, Maman celebrated the anniversary of his move in another Facebook status:

So one year ago i moved here to join the army… Im not gonna make up some bullshit glorious story to break your heart… I just did it to beat up terrorists and shit… Happy one year anniversary Mmmmmffffffckasss!!!

osher-one-year-fb.jpg

Source

Not exactly a boy scout

An image he posted of its insignia indicates that Maman was recruited directly from the United States via “Garin Tzabar” a program that recruits Jews and Israelis from overseas into the army. Maman identifies himself as a Garin Tzabar member on his Google Plus account.

A comment made on a website dedicated to Garin Tzabar, from the Facebook account of Maman’s mother, Batya Sabag, a social media consultant in Naples, Florida, also identifies her son as a graduate of the program.

One of the requirements of the Garin Tzabar program is a “Certificate of Good Conduct (proof of no prior criminal record).”

This military recruitment program for the Israeli occupation army is run by the Israel Scouts.

According to an image posted by Maman, on 5 April 2012 his military service had begun 138 days previously (which would be November 2011) and will end on 19 November 2014.

montage_with_blindfold.jpg

A montage posted by Osher Mamam features a blindfolded and bound Palestinian prisoner, weapons, and tags that reveal fantasies of violence. Source

Misuse of weapons

bullet_art.jpg

Obscene Source

When Maman was arrested and charged in the BB gun incident – classified by authorities as a weapon, not a toy, his father, Zion Maman, told media that “the culture in Israel has a more relaxed view about toy guns.”

3_men_with_guns.jpg

Basic rule of gun safety: don’t put your finger on the trigger unless you intend to shoot. Source

That relaxed view extends to real guns, mortars, grenades and all sorts of other heavy weapons that Osher Maman is seen handling, sometimes naked, and using as toys and props in disturbing images he posted online.

These images suggest that the Israeli army exercises little control or discipline over weapons.

star_of_david_guns.jpg

Star of David formed with guns. Source

aiming_gun_with_bullets_belt.jpg

This gun appears to be loaded and it’s definitely not a toy. Source

blue_mortar_shell.jpg

Does the Israeli army just leave mortar shells lying around for use as Instagram props? Source

yellow_grenades.jpg

More weapons for Osher Maman to play with. Source

dead_or_alive_joystick.jpg

Playing God? Note the caption Osher Maman has attached to this image of what might be the controller of remote weapon system. Source

screenshot_2_20_13_12_48_am.png

Source

screenshot_2_20_13_12_49_am.png

Source

green_tips.jpg

Source

fragment_grenades.jpg

Source

Maman posts images of himself breaking military law

osher-smoking-in-uniform.jpg

A criminal offense under Israeli military law, Golani brigade soldier Osher Maman smokes marijuana in his uniform. Source

Images posted on Maman’s Instagram account show him smoking marijuana in uniform and on duty, in direct contravention of Israeli army order “33.011 – Use of Drugs – procedures for report, detention, and initiating a military police investigation.”

osher_with_joint_and_sunglasses.jpg

Osher Maman with a joint while on duty. Source

Military order 33.011 states that the use of drugs, including hashish, “constitutes a criminal offense and harms the army, so this order does not leave room for the commanders’ discretion.” It adds that, “All soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces are prohibited from possessing drugs, taking them, or trading in them.”

marijuana_in_hand.jpg

Osher Maman shows off his stash. Possession is a criminal offense under army law. Source

What does it mean that the Israeli army recruits a soldier, with a dubious history, who is stupid enough to post images of himself committing more criminal offenses?

Is this a man who should be handling – playing with – lethal weapons in any circumstances?

Or does it mean that this Most Moral Army so lacks discipline that soldiers like Maman can break the law without fear of consequences?

A lust for violence and genocidal hatred of Arabs

Osher Maman freely expresses his deep, even genocidal hatred of Palestinians and his desire to see them oppressed and killed. Responding to a comment on one of his images, for example, Maman told the commenter

“Lmao for all I care you can comment all my pictures, you’re still a fucking Arab pile of shit, you even smell like it. You’re never going to win over israel (the chosen people) bc you’re a bunch of slaves, shit I probably am the slave master of some Arab who’s related to you… 

osher-comment.jpg

An you all will stay trapped in gaza and every little shittt village that you Palestinians have inside of israel. And you will continue to go to our jails and to have your houses broken into. Basically your life will be shit until you all die, so go ahead and have fun commenting on my pictures of that’s going to make your death a little better…


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

March 2021
M T W T F S S
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031  

Blog Stats

  • 1,462,176 hits

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.adonisbouh@gmail.com

Join 802 other followers

%d bloggers like this: