The U.S. “Apologist in Chief”
Obama first bows to the Saudi King.
Obama hugs the Islamic leader of Turkey.
Mubarak “must step down.”
Gaddahfi must go.
Has Obama, through his placation of Islamic governance in the Middle East failed to represent true freedom?
News from the Middle East:
January 22, 2012
The Arab Spring revolts began in Tunisia in late 2010 and quickly spread to Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Syria and Bahrain, deposing or challenging authoritarian rulers as citizens who long seemed incapable or unwilling to rise against decades of repression took to the streets in a stunning awakening.
Western governments also have been accused of being selective in supporting the protesters, with NATO airstrikes proving key to the ouster of slain Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi. Meanwhile, the West has stood largely on the sidelines amid continued crackdowns in Bahrain, Yemen and Syria.
“The people driving the Arab Spring deserve strong international support to realize their rights and to build genuine democracies,” Roth said in the group’s annual report, which covers some 90 countries. He added that the Arab world is in a “transformative moment,” and it will not be an easy one.
Human Rights Watch pointed to five main issues that dominated the relationship between Western governments and their Arab autocratic friends: the threat of political Islam, the fight against terrorism, support for Israel, protection of the oil flow and cooperation in stemming immigration.
Even after the leaders of Egypt, Libya and Tunisia were toppled, Western governments remained hesitant to lean too hard on other shaky authoritarian leaders, the group said.
As an example, the watchdog group singled out the United States, saying it has been reluctant to “press Egypt’s ruling military council to subject itself to elected civilian rule,” nearly a year after the country’s longtime leader was ousted following an 18-day uprising.
Roth acknowledged Western governments were re-evaluating their policies as new governments emerge in the region, but said changes have been selective.
“The West has not put Bahrain under pressure, and other monarchs, to carry out reforms,” he told The Associated Press in an interview ahead of the report’s release in Cairo.
The organization also blamed the Western hesitation in part on the ascendence of political Islam in most of the countries that witnessed the fall of their autocratic rulers like Egypt, Libya, and Tunisia.
HRW urged the West to recognize that Islamists are the “majority preference,” while keeping pressure on the emerging new governments to respect human rights, especially regarding women and religious minorities.
January 21, 2012
In the vote for the lower house of parliament, a coalition led by the fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood won 47 percent, or 235 seats in the 498-seat parliament. The ultraconservative Al-Nour Party was second with 25 percent, or 125 seats.
The Salafi Al-Nour, which was initially the biggest surprise of the vote, wants to impose strict Islamic law in Egypt, while the more moderate Brotherhood, the country’s best-known and organized party, has said publicly that it does not seek to force its views about an appropriate Islamic lifestyle on Egyptians.
The liberals who spearheaded the revolt that toppled Mubarak struggled to organize and connect with a broader public in the vote, and did not fair as well as the Islamists.
The Egyptian bloc, which is headed by a party founded by Christian telecom tycoon Naguib Sawiris, said it won 9 percent of the seats in parliament. Egypt’s oldest secular party, the Wafd, also won around 9 percent.
The United States long shunned Islamist groups like the Muslim Brotherhood and turned a blind-eye to the arrest and torture of Salafis, who now comprise the bulk of Al-Nour Party’s constituents, under Mubarak, who was a longtime U.S. ally.
However, top U.S. officials from the State Department have recently met with the Muslim Brotherhood’s leaders, who have in turn assured Western officials that they respect minority rights and support democracy.
A White House statement said that President Barack Obama called Egypt’s ruling military leader, Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, on Friday and welcomed the historic seating of the lower house of Egypt’s Parliament, which is set to convene for the first time on Monday. Activists have accused the country’s military leaders of repressive tactics. Critics say the nearly 12,000 civilians who have faced military trials since Mubarak’s ouster have not been afforded proper due process.
January 21, 2012
BENGHAZI, Libya (AP) – Hundreds of angry Libyans on Saturday stormed the transitional government’s headquarters in the eastern city of Benghazi, carting off computers, chairs, and desks while the country’s interim leader was still holed up in the building.
The melee at the National Transitional Council’s headquarters began after protesters broke through the gates using hand grenades and streamed into the grounds of the headquarters. They banged on the building’s doors and demanded officials meet with them.
A security official in the building said a team of some 50 guards dressed as civilians were trying to calm the protesters.
The official, who served as a revolutionary commander during the civil war, said Abdul-Jalil was still in the building and was refusing to leave. He spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the subject.
Some of the protesters pitched tents weeks ago outside the NTC’s headquarters to protest a set of election laws they say were drafted by the interim leaders without consulting the public.
“The election laws have not been approved by thousands of Libyans and do not honor those who died for our freedom,” said Tamer al-Jahani, a lawyer taking part in the protest. “We don’t want to replace one tyrant with another.”
The NTC is expected to soon pass the packet of laws, which specify how elections for a transitional parliament will be held. The council only took into account public suggestions through an online survey.
The NTC’s handling of the draft laws has sparked criticism that the council is not living up to its democratic ideals.
Protester Ahmed Boras accused the NTC of sidelining anti-Gadhafi fighters.
“It seems to us that these people are no different than Gadhafi and they only speak the language of force,” he said.
January 22, 2012
BAGHDAD (AP) – Iraq’s Shiite-led government cracked down harshly on dissent during the past year of Arab Spring uprisings, turning the country into a “budding police state” as autocratic regimes crumbled elsewhere in the region, an international rights groups said Sunday.
Security forces abuse protesters, harass journalists, torture detainees and intimidate activists, Human Rights Watch said in the Iraq chapter of its annual report.
“Iraq is quickly slipping back into authoritarianism,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director for the New York-based group. “Despite U.S. government assurances that it helped create a stable democracy (in Iraq), the reality is that it left behind a budding police state,” she said.
Protests against Iraq’s U.S.-backed and democratically elected government erupted around the country in February 2011, alongside other demonstrations in the Arab world.
The government clamped down, sometimes sparking bloody clashes – as when 14 were killed in confrontations between security forces and civilians across the country during the Feb. 25 protests billed as the “Day of Rage.”
A year later, with U.S. troops withdrawn and Iraq’s government mired in a political crisis, the protest movement has all but died out. Demonstrators who gather in Baghdad’s central Tahrir Square are usually outnumbered by the security forces watching over them.
“Iraqis are quickly losing ground on the most basic of rights, including the right to free speech and assembly,” said Samer Muscati, an Iraq researcher for the group. “Nowadays, every time someone attends a peaceful protest, they put themselves at risk of attack and abuse by security forces or their proxies,” he said.
The HRW should insist that U.N. “blue helmets” be inserted into these “budding Arab countries”. Where are they?
In the mantra of “Where’s Waldo”…….WHERE is Susan Rice, the U.S. Ambassador to the U.N.?
Has ANYONE seen Susan Rice on any MSM talking about the “happenings” in the Middle East, and what the U.S. IS or ISN’T doing since what some call authoritarian regimes have been ousted?
[T]op U.S. officials from the State Department have recently met with the Muslim Brotherhood’s leaders, who have in turn assured Western officials that they respect minority rights and support democracy.
Muslim Brotherhood = Hamas.
Founded in 1928 by the Egyptian schoolteacher/activist Hasan al-Banna (a devout admirer of Adolf Hitler and the Nazis), the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) — a Sunni entity — is one of the oldest, largest and most influential Islamist organizations in the world. While Egypt historically has been the center of the Brotherhood’s operations, the group today is active in more than 70 countries (some estimates range as high as 100+). Islam expert Robert Spencer has called MB “the parent organization of Hamas and al Qaeda.” In 2003, Richard Clarke – the chief counterterrorism advisor on the U.S. National Security Council during both the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush administrations – told a Senate committee that Hamas, al Qaeda, and Palestinian Islamic Jihad were all “descendants of the membership and ideology of the Muslim Brothers.”
The Muslim Brotherhood’s “General Strategic Goal” for North America
The Muslim Brotherhood “Project” for Israel and America
Listen to this Muslim Student Association (MSA) member speak: Listen carefully to her saying the MSA is sponsoring HITLER YOUTH WEEK and her remarks about Jews.
“World as it is…or world as it should be”? At 5:30 to 5:43 in above video.
As an organizer I start from where the world is, as it is, not as I would like it to be. That we accept the world as it is does not in any sense weaken our desire to change it into what we believe it should be – it is necessary to begin where the world is if we are going to change it to what we think it should be. That means working in the system. ~~Saul Alinsky
by Saul D. Alinsky
A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals
Has Obama failed in foreign policy; OR is this his agenda?