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Posts Tagged ‘Nobel Peace prize

 

Why I can’t celebrate Malala’s Nobel Peace Prize.

The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded this Friday to India’s Kailash Satyarthi and Pakistan’s Malala Yousafzai for their struggles against the suppression of children and for young people’s rights, including the right to education.

That is great news, and it might almost mean Nobel Peace Prize makes sense again.

Mind you that this year prize is meaningful after being awarded to Barack Obama in 2009 “for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples”,

This prize  was also awarded to European Union in 2012 “for over six decades contributed to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe” (at least this make sense, while the Obama excuse is pretty lame and totally erroneous).

(Again, international politics abridge the years that a person has to struggle before being considered for a prize. Though Kailash Satyarthi has already served his dues after 14 years of steadfast struggles to prohibit kids from being used as labor in India. He managed to save 75,000 kids from this awful state of slavery)

Still, there is something that really troubles me. How come we (meaning the West) always recognize the “devils” of the East, the torments children like Malala had to and have to go through (in her case, with the Taliban), but always fail to recognize our own participation in creating those “devils”?

How come we never talk about the things our governments are doing to the children of Pakistan, or Syria, or Iraq, or Palestine, or Yemen?

Let’s just take drone strikes as an example. Last year’s tweet by George Galloway might illustrate this hypocrisy.

10494696_10205086935471637_7493940445304227766_n

Galloway is absolutely right. We would never even know her name.

But, since Malala’s story fits into the western narrative of the oriental oppression (in which the context underlying the creation of the oppression is left out), we all know Malala’s name. Like Assed Baig writes:

This is a story of a native girl being saved by the white man. Flown to the UK, the Western world can feel good about itself as they save the native woman from the savage men of her home nation. It is a historic racist narrative that has been institutionalized.

Journalists and politicians were falling over themselves to report and comment on the case. The story of an innocent brown child that was shot by savages for demanding an education and along comes the knight in shining armour to save her. 

The actions of the West, the bombings, the occupations the wars all seem justified now, ‘see, we told you, this is why we intervene to save the natives.’”

The problem is, there are thousands of Malalas that the West helped create with endless wars, occupations, interventions, drone strikes, etc.

In Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, one can hear how little we know about the drone strikes – its aims, targets, results. Right now we have the executive branch making a claim that it has the right to kill anyone, anywhere on Earth, at any time, for secret reasons based on secret evidence, in a secret process undertaken by unidentified officials. That frightens me.

This is how Rosa Brooks, a Georgetown professor and former Pentagon official under President Obama, explained the US policy on drone strikes during a congressional hearing last year.

The following photo presents the piece that was installed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) province, close to Pakistan’s northwest border with Afghanistan, by an art collective that includes Pakistanis, Americans and others associated with the French artist JR.

The collective said it produced the work in the hope that U.S. drone operators will see the human face of their victims in a region that has been the target of frequent strikes.

foto/photo via notabugsplat/

That is the reality we are not being presented with.

Another reality is the story of Abeer Qassim Hamza al-Janabi, 14-year-old Iraqi girl, who was gang raped by five U.S. Army soldiers and killed in her house in Yusufiyah (Iraq) in 2006.

She was raped and murdered after her parents and six-year-old sister Hadeel Qasim Hamza were killed.

Also not irrelevant to mention is that Abeer was going to school before the US invasion but had to stop going because of her father’s concerns for her safety.

article-0-0C89D3B2000005DC-51_634x548Abeer Qassim Hamza al-Janabi

And while the West applauds Malala (as they should), I am afraid it might be for the wrong reasons, or with a wrong perspective.

It feels like the West wants to gain an agenda that suits them or the policies they want.

That is also why Malala’s views on Islam are rarely presented.

She uses her faith as a framework to argue for the importance of education rather than making Islam a justification for oppression, but that is rarely mentioned. It also “doesn’t fit”.

So, my thoughts were mixed this Friday when I heard the news about the Nobel Peace Prize. On so many levels. They still are. We’ve entered a new war, and peace prize award ceremonies seem ridiculous after looking at this photo.

tumblr_nd1ycaClBV1tgyqboo1_1280“They say that if God loves you, He will let you live a long life, but I wish that He loved me a little less. I wish that I didn’t live long enough to see my country in ruins.”  Ahmad, a 102 year old Syrian refugee /photo by A. McConnell, UNHCR/

Sure, we must acknowledge the efforts of those who are fighting for a better world, but when it is done in a way that feels so calculated, unidimensional, loaded with secret agendas and tons of hypocrisy – I just can’t celebrate it.

“Wait sounds Never to my ears”; (Mar. 2, 2010)

            Responding to a letter from White preachers in Alabama considering Martin Luther King activities “unconsidered and tempestuous” he wrote from his prison in Birmingham in 1963 this letter:

            “Any non-violent campaign has to satisfy four stages: first, gather facts of injustices; second, start negotiation; third, endeavor auto-purification; and fourth, set up a program for direct action.  Birmingham is a city where segregation is the most rigorous among the other cities: Courts reserve notorious public injustices toward Blacks; many attacks on private properties and Black churches go unpunished; and the White political figures refuse to negotiate in good faith.

            We have got to set up a direct action plan to pressure for a just negotiation.  We discovered that we never obtained a single civil right if not after resolute pressures, legal, and non-violent. Privilege classes never cede their prerogatives without constant constraints since groups lack individual morale values.

            For years, we have been hearing “Wait”; this “Wait” means “Never” to my ears.  When 20 million Blacks suffocate in fetid poverty within opulent society; when you walk quietly the street and not knowing when injustice will hit you next; when you fight the devastating feeling of being considered as nobody, then you comprehend that it is no longer appropriate to wait.  I am convinced that if the non-violence dimension was not prevalent in Black churches then blood would be flowing on the streets in the south.  The ultimate weakness of violence is a descending spiral that generates the destruction of what it seeked to destroy.  Instead of weakening evil it multiplies it.  Violence may kill the liar but it neither kills the lie nor re-establishing truth” (Letters from the prison of Birmingham, 1963)

            A mass non-violent demonstration flooded the streets of Birmingham in 1963; it was squashed violently.  More than 3,000 Black demonstrators were put in jail; King was among them.  Martin Luther King was jailed 20 times for various durations; the prison term in Birmingham lasted 140 days.

            Dr. Martin Luther King (1929-68) was born in the State of Georgia, a grandson and son of a preacher; he didn’t suffer or experience the miseries of the southern Blacks; he wrote his PhD thesis at the seminary of Crozer in Pennsylvania “Comparison of the concept of God between Paul Tillich and Henry Nelson Wieman.”

            It happened that in 1955 another Black woman, Rosa Parks, defied the transport regulation of segregating passengers in Montgomery (Alabama); Parks refused to cede her place to a White passenger.  This time around, Blacks were ready to react.  King and another preacher demanded the boycott of the bus company. King said: “We are tired of maltreatments. We have been too patient so far. One of the glories of democracy is that people have the right to protest.  Our protest will be conducted non-violently.  Love of the neighbor is our rule.”

            The boycott lasted 382 days and the bus company changed its rules to avoid bankruptcy. The Supreme Court ruled that segregation in transport is not constitutional.  For 11 years, King traveled more than 10 million km, crisscrossed the USA and traveled to many countries and delivered over 2,500 public speeches. King fame spread overseas and inland; he delivered 208 public speeches in 1957 alone and was invited by Kwame Nkrumah to Accra to celebrate the newly acquired independence of Ghana.  President Eisenhower received King in private audience in 1957.  Pope Paul 6 received him in the Vatican in 1964, shortly before King was awarded Nobel Peace Prize.

            Dr. Martin Luther King was not conversant with the Black northern States problems: the segregation there was class segregation (ghetto life) of the worst kind.  Black leaders in the north and people in Harlem lambasted King’s approachs to their different problems.  Malcolm X understood King’s non-violence program but correctly comprehended that White authorities tactically viewed King’s movement as a lesser evil and favored it to the more radical movements demanding separate State for Blacks.  Malcolm X had this prophecy “Sure, my methods are radically opposed to King’s non-violence that has the merit of exposing the brutality of White racial system but in the current climate I am wondering which one of us will be assassinated first.”  Malcolm X was assassinated 4 years before King.  Like all activists, they didn’t reach the age of 40.  The White authorities decided that it was King’s turn to be assassinated when his non-violence movement lagged behind the radical movements.  

            Stokely Carmichael who instituted the Comity of non-violent students (SNCC) broke out with the “evangelical sweetness” of King and launched the order for “Black Power” against “institutional and structural racism”.  Fannie Lou Hamer pronounced during a congress for racial equality “While King is dreaming I am having nightmares”.  By 1965, King and Ralph Abernathy decided to relocate to the poor quarters in Chicago.  King’s non-violent movement was losing momentum to the radical Black movements. Abernathy could not sustain for long the rough life in the ghetto and moved out to breath easier.

            After the mass rally in Washington DC where 250,000 gathered to hear King saying: “I had a dream that, one day, the State of Mississippi, aflame in injustices and oppressions, is transformed into an oasis of liberty and justice.  I had a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of ancient slaves and the sons of ancient owners of slaves will sit down together at the table of fraternity” the non-violence movement lost momentum because nothing major moved in civil rights demands as during the Kennedy Administration.

            The moment King was assassinated in 1968, 150 cities throughout the USA were set ablaze.  The Federal government and all the States guards ordered tens of thousands of soldiers to tame the mass revolts. The revolts registered 46 killed, 3,000 injured, 2,000 buildings burned, and 23,000 arrests.

            Dr. Martin Luther King published “Combats for liberty, 1958”, “Non-violent revolutions”, “The power of love, 1963”, “where from here? 1967” and “Why we can’t wait? 1964”

 Next in line for Nobel Peace Prize: Erdogan, Turkey’s PM 

In December 18, 2004 I wrote “Turkey: A Regional Power in the Making “.  In February 4, 2009 I updated my article “A Regional Power out of hibernation in the Near East“.  Another update is required because Turkey seems to vigorously and quickly act everywhere.

Turkey forgot the Islamic world for over 60 years since the dictator Ataturk snatched power after WWI. Turkey relied on its military to impose a secular state and emulate the Western culture in alphabet characters and in dress codes.

Basically, Turkey of Ataturk and the successive governments considered that protecting the “Republic” is first in priority, far ahead of human rights…

Ataturk wanted to shed away the image of backward Ottoman Empire that lost an Empire, extending from Hungry to Iraq to Arabic Peninsula, the Near East, Egypt and all Northern Africa.  The other Empire to the east was the Persian Safafid Dynasty that extended to Pakistan. The Safafid Empire was founded by another Turkish leader and opted to adopt the Shiaa Moslem sect as the religion of his Empire.

Turkey is part of NATO (this year is its turn to lead the NATO forces in Afghanistan), thanks to the cold war against the defunct neighbor of Soviet Union: Turkey was the main effective ally to the US in the region during the cold war. Turkey was denied full membership in the European Union after the Soviet Union disintegrated into “independent States” recognized by the UN.

France and Germany offered a rational for their refusal on the ground of Turkey not satisfying the basic social and political requirement of a homogenous member.  For 60 years Turkey had turned its back to the Arab problems, and decided to be allied to the USA, the State of Israel, and the Shah of Iran.

Things are changing fast after the horrors of Gaza and the tearing down of the mask of the Zionist ideology of terror, expansion, and apartheid.  Turkey was playing the fair mediator between Syria and Israel in order for the return of the occupied Syrian Golan Heights. Turkey was mediating between Israel and the Palestinians to render the life of the Palestinians under occupation more bearable during the peace negotiations for a separate Palestinian State.  Israel Olmert PM lied to the Turkish PM Erdogan before the barbaric re-incursion into Gaza.

Erdogan, Turkey’s PM is undeniably the most powerful leader criticizing the Zionist State for its genocide in Gaza. He canceled a joint military maneuver with the US and Israel. The US has nobody else to conduct military maneuvers but Israel in this region; the latest naval one is to last two weeks with objective to save Israel of mass missile attack!

Turkey, under Erdogan, is currently more powerful than the whole of Europe in the Near East for establishing peace, stability and equitable political resolutions.  Turkey is a self-sufficient, independent Nation and has ruled the whole Middle East for four centuries. Turkey has awakened from a long hibernation and decided to be a major regional power broker.

Turkey is demanding and acting as the main power broker in the Near East because it has interest in the stability of its south-eastern borders with Syria, Iran, and Iraq.  So far, Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq were peons for the larger policies of the US, Europe, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia in the Middle East.

Turkey’s current policies beg to differ: “no more war zones at my borders and in my back yards“.  The US and Israel must have understood the message clearly and loudly. The so-called “moderate” Arab States of Egypt and Saudi Arabia are cowering down and are taken by surprise to the emergence of the new revitalized Turkey siding with the underdogs.

We are not hearing anymore about the Turkish war on the Kurdish self-autonomous movement.  I wholeheartedly wish that negotiations are secretly and seriously underway with the Kurdish Workers’ Party for a peaceful resolution.  The Kurdish problem was used by the USA and Israel to blackmail Turkey.

I have a feeling that the Kurds in Turkey, Syria, Iraq, and Iran appreciate the new directions of Erdogan’s government and would find in Erdogan a viable interlocutor and would cooperate with Turkey to lighten up this heavy burden of a useless and fruitless civil war. The new policy in Turkey is to open peaceful negotiations with the opposition Kurds; around 200 Kurdish leaders in the resistance movement have turned themselves in and all indicates that a resolution is palpable.

Turkey will be asked to exercise its beneficial influence in restoring peace, stability and economic prosperity in the region.  It will inevitably join the European Union with the unavoidable important changes that Turkey will have to accept and undergo in matters of democracy, liberty, human rights, social and economical constraints.

This transformation of a powerful neighbor will transcend into a drastic transformation of the societies surrounding Turkey. The benefits are already materializing in closer ties with Syria, pressures on Israel to agree on a Palestinian State, and greater normalization with Iran.

Turkey is obviously the main power that can provide autonomy to the Kurdish nationalism spreading among Turkey, Syria, Iraq and Iran. Turkey is the main power that can efficiently check US omnipotence in the Middle East and any resurgence of Russia militarism. Turkey prevented Bush Junior to invade Iraq through its territory; the US air base in Interlink was prohibited to launch air raids on Iraq.  I have great hope in this new power amongst us, especially that the current Turkish government has proven to be far-sighted and confident in its power and role in this region.

For a couple of years after Europe shut off the door for Turkey entering the Union, Turkey felt the need to crawl in a cave and hibernate.  Turkey shook off its lethargic attitude and is now in the driving seat and operating a strategy that befits its power in the Middle East.  It has surmounted tough obstacles in economic difficulties, human rights issues that are frequently re-emerging, and demonstrations that are occasionally broken by brute force. Turkey is no longer allowed to relax.

Turkey is quickly learning that it has to keep pace with the culture of Europe and to fight harder to catch up with lost time. Its dialogue with Syria has brought fruits: no visas are needed to cross joint borders, seasonal water resource shortages are frequently revised, and the western world had come to term that it can no longer circumvent Syria in this volatile region with Turkey’s backing.

Europe must be appreciating the decision of Turkey to play a major role in the Near East, but the US is very wary because it refuses to share pre-eminence in the Middle East.  Turkey active diplomacy and clear policies should weight heavier in the decision process for joining the European Union.  The frustrations of Turkey with the EU must have given it a clear hint of what its policies should be based on and where its focus should be directed to.

Turkey is the new pivotal power in the Middle East in the coming decades.  It is the cornerstone for new emerging Northern Middle East Block with Syria, Iraq, and Iran.  This strategic block in formation is inevitable after the US troops leave Iraq and would constitute the best guarantee for this volatile region to peace and security.

Erdogan should have received the Nobel Award for Peace instead of Barak Obama who has no active records to show for earning this prize (Read my post “What that! Nobel Prize for Passivity?”  Erdogan has already executed peace treaties with his archenemies: Syria, Armenia, the Kurds, soon with Cyprus, and has definitely sided with the Palestinians against apartheid Israel.

Normally, Erdogan should be in line for the peace prize. Judging from the trend, the cynical Nobel Committee never feels comfortable awarding Peace Prizes to Middle Eastern leaders unless it is shared with the devils such as Began and Peres. Erdogan got my highest prize and we all feel much more optimist in our future.

Note 1:  Political events have accelerated since I published this article, and I changed my mind: Erdogan is not supposed to be considered for Peace Nobel award, unless the US administration wants to push his nomination forward!  Turkey has changed policies to accommodate drastic mass uprising in the Arab States.  The Kurds are being persecuted by mass military interventions…

Turkey is kind of demonstrating that it is acting in full cooperation with the US administration.  Turkey has resumed military activities against the Kurds, within Iraq boundaries.  Turkey is alienating Syria by showing off as the neighboring Big Brother with suggestions and tacit threats.  The Arab States are becoming more worried of this close cooperation between Turkey and the US…

Islamist Erdogan has not demonstrated that he will turn over power, if he ever lost an election, a rule that has been in its tenth year and going stronger…

Note 2: Last week in May, 2013, the Kurdish Workers’ Party agreed to leave Turkey and move its military forces to Iraq. Turkey is in cohort with Israel for bombing Damascus and wrecking havoc in Syria…

Note 3: This May 2013, Turkish people mass demonstrated in Taksim Square (Istanbul) to prevent the erasing of a popular park to build yet another Mall. Over 1,000 were arrested, 4 died when tanks run them over and the police forces were ordered to retreat when faced with steadfast obstruction.

Senator George Mitchell dispatched with pre-conditions

 

The European envoys and leaders are talking with Palestinian Hamas and resistance factions though not publicly.  George Mitchell is ordered not to meet with Hamas.  If Obama and Hillary refuses to negotiate with Hamas who represents 65% of the Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank then with whom Mitchell is to dialogue for a settlement of the Palestinian/Israeli crisis?

We, in the Middle East would like to assume that Mitchel trip is to present recommendations for opening direct negotiation with the Palestinian resistance movements. The Obama administration might need a fresh and current document to discuss the new phase after the gaza horrors before negotiating with Hamas; that is what we want to believe, otherwise Mitchel is set up for failure and he should know it. 

     

I cannot help but to re-publish a previous article that is as current as it can be “A Walk in the Park for Barak Obama: Gaza (January 10, 2009)”

Within two weeks and single handedly, Bush Junior and Cheney have shredded the mask of Zionism.  For a century, the Western establishments have tried restlessly to design a human mask for the Zionist movement because Zionist ideology suited their interests in the Middle East to perfection.  The Western intelligence communities have studied and analyzed completely the characteristics of the Zionist movement and it was no mystery to them at all.  Zionism was the ideal candidate to destabilize a region rich in oil and strategically located to hamper colonial commerce and exploitation of the India and the Far East if the Middle East region united to preserve their natural resources and behave as an independent and self autonomous people.

 

 

            It has taken the Palestinian resistance in Gaza and the murder of 600 babies and the injury of 2,000 babies and the traumatizing of 600,000 babies to finally removing the tattered mask of Zionism and exposing the true ugly face of reality.  The World Community and populations needed this crazy couple of Bush-Cheney to steadfastly believe that crime against humanity is good if it suit their goals; that blessing war crimes against human dignity is their prophetic calling.  Yes, the New-Conservative, New-Born Baptist “Christians” finally succeeded to take revenge on the Jews who crucified their brand of “Jesus”; they must be feeling wonderfully good for this rebirth on the third millennia and at the expense of the “homeless” Palestinians.

            Now that the little people all over the world know the fundamental barbarity and apartheid ideology of Zionism then it should be a walk in the park for President elect Obama to resolve the Palestinian/Israeli problems, if he wills it.  If Obama refuses to resolve the Near East problems, then he might as well give the green light to his mercenary State of Israel to design a vast park of 300 square kilometers in Gaza so that Obama might enjoy a warmer location than Camp David.  Either way, it all depends on what kind of a park Obama wishes to have in Gaza.  The first drastic decision should be to open direct lines of negotiation with Hamas and the Palestinian resistance movements who represent over 65% of the votes.

 

Note:  The true deservers of the Nobel Peace Prize have proclaimed their shame that Shimon Peres (Israel’ President) was also awarded this noble prize.  Simon Peres declared that Israel can defend its babies from the Palestinian babies in Gaza.


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

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