المقر الرئيسي الجديد لداعش هو ليبيا


المقر الرئيسي الجديد لداعش هو ليبيا

INTERPRETED AND TRANSLATED BY ASHRAF ABDUL WAHAB
المؤلفو
  كريستوفر نيكسون كوكس هو حفيد الرئيس ال 37 للولايات المتحدة، ريتشارد نيكسون.
   فيليب إسكارافاج هو محلل ليبيا. وهو صهر كريستوفر كيب فوربس الذي هو نائب رئيس مجلس إدارة فوربس ميديا.

  الأحد أكتوبر 1، 2017

 

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi

 

صورة حديثة لزعيم تنظيم داعش، أبو بكر البغدادي

 

ظهرت مقالة هامة وذات صلة في نيوزماكس أمس الجمعة 29 سبتمبر حول الرئيس السابق لجهاز المخابرات المركزية فيما يتعلق باستراتيجية داعش الجديدة في المنطقة و اهتم بنقطة محددة  في تلك المقالة و التي لاقت صدى عندنا حيث كنا نتوقع  نفس الاحتمال منذ عدة اشهر

في مقال مكتوب بشكل جيد عن دانيال هوفمان رئيس جهاز المخابرات  الأمريكية المركزية السابق الذي تحدث عن أهداف إعادة تنظيم داعش , حيث يسجلون تراجعا و يفقدون مواقعهم.

خدم هوفمان في العديد من المقاطعات وخاصة روسيا والعراق وباكستان، وذكر على وجه التحديد أن رئيس داعش، وأبو بكر البغدادي قرر أساسا أن مستقبل داعش الوحيد هو أن يكون مقرها في ليبيا، وأنه هو نفسه البغدادي يجب أن تكون المادية هناك إلى وتوفير الروح المعنوية والدعم النفسي لما يسمى حلم الخلافة. وهناك بلد سياسي جديد يهيمن عليه الدين ويطلق عليه اسم “الدولة الإسلامية” التي ستشكل من بين الدول التي ستحاول تدميرها في المستقبل

وقد تم طرح العديد من النقاط الأخرى الجيدة في تلك المقالة، لكن هذا هو السبب في أن داعش قررت نقل العمليات من العراق وسوريا إلى ليبيا مما يحدث تغيير في عملية الحرب على الإرهاب.

ومع استمرار خسائر داعش في سوريا والعراق، فإنهم يحتاجون إلى “منزل جديد”، وقد وجدوا منزلهم هذا في ليبيا و نحن نخشى ذهابهم بالآلاف الى هناك.

وهنا بعض الأدلة التي تدعم تأكيد دينيس هوفمان. ففي الأسابيع القليلة الماضية، ظهر القليل في وسائل الإعلام حول زيادة حدة القتال في صبراتة و تظهر التقارير التي تصف هذه المناوشات على انها لعناصر ميليشيات صبراتة المحلية و التي دفعت لها الحكومة الإيطالية سرا حتى تقاتل “المهربين” لوقف تدفق المهاجرين، ولا سيما من زوارة إلى إيطاليا.  هذه إستراتيجية تلتزم بها إيطاليا وحدها.

ومع ذلك ما هو الإتجاه  الرئيسي وسائل الإعلام تفشل في الكتابة عن ماهية الأسباب الحقيقية لشدة القتال في وحول صبراتة وسرت.

الآلاف من مقاتلي داعش وصلوا مؤخرا إلى ليبيا من العراق وسوريا، حيث اضطروا للفرار. ويرجع ذلك في الغالب إلى القصف الروسي على مواقع داعش في هذين البلدين، حيث من الواضح أن داعش قد خسر الآن – كما أن الدعم اللوجيستى و الطبي قدم سرا من تركيا. إن حركة مرورهم هي من تركيا و منها لمطار مدينة مصراتة، وهي نقطة وسط بين سرت وصبراتة. المناطق التي يتجه إليها معتدي داعش في داخل وحول موقعين استراتيجيين عسكريين حاسمين لتنظيم داعش وسرت وصبراتة.

فهي تمكنها من فتح جبهات جديدة وإعادة ترتيب أولويات استراتيجيتها.

و لماذا ذلك٫ لأنها تعطيهم مسافة قصيرة من سرت إلى حقول النفط في الهلال النفطي وفيما يتعلق بصبراتة، فإن داعش لديها خطط لبدء شن هجمات على تونس ثم الجزائر والمغرب. ويرجع ذلك جزئيا إلى أن العديد من مقاتلي داعش العائدين هم أصلا من تونس، ويبدو أن فكرتهم هي جلب الاضطرابات إلى بلدهم الأصلي وكذلك إلى ليبيا، ولذلك فهم بحاجة إلى قاعدة لتشغيل مثل هذه الأنشطة. ثم للتوسع في بلدان شمال أفريقيا الأخرى.

هذه هي استراتيجية داعش الجديدة، لا تخطئ.

أما فيما يتعلق بمدينة صبراتة، فقد تم الدفاع و بشدة عن هجمات داعش الجديدة من قبل غرفة العمليات الليبية المناهضة لتنظيم داعش.

وهناك قضية جانبية وقلق حول صبراتة، وخاصة بالنسبة لليونسكو و هو حدوث المزيد من الأضرار المحتملة للآثار الرومانية المحفوظة حتى الآن التي يرجع تاريخها إلى آلاف السنين في مدينة صبراتة الرومانية القديمة.

 

Sabratha

Sabratha

كان هناك للمرة الأولى قصف بالمدفعية في الأسبوع الماضي من قبل داعش، ودعت اليونسكو إلى وضع حد للهجمات على هذا الموقع الهام للتراث. و هذا بداية إعادة ما قام به داعش في تدمر في سوريا حيث دمروا آلاف السنين من التماثيل التاريخية التي لا يمكن تعويضها والمعالم الأثرية التي يعود تاريخها إلى العصر البرونزي

وقال ريتشارد غالوستيان، المحلل السياسي البريطاني لمنطقة الشرق الأوسط وشمال أفريقيا وخبير في المنطقة، ، “مؤخرا يبدو أن التقارير من ليبيا عموما، وتحديدا من صبراتة، قد قللت من حقيقة التدفق الجديد لمقاتلي داعش الذين تراجعوا من سوريا والعراق “مضيفا” ان الصحافة لا تريد الا ان تكتب عن إلقاء  اللوم علي الحكومة الإيطالية كسبب في تزايد القتال في ليبيا و ذلك من اجل تغذية القتال  لتحقيق اهدافها “. كما ذكر غلوستيان “يجب تحديد أن  الإيطاليون، يدفعون ببعض الميليشيات لمحاربة مهربين، ولكن هذا هو الجزء الصغير من المشكلة أما المشكلة الحقيقة فهي في مقاتلي داعش الجدد الذين يأتون إلى ليبيا بالآلاف “.

وقد قامت الحكومة الإيطالية بطريقتها في شرح  الوضع إلى الجنرال حفتر الذي زار روما في وقت سابق من هذا الأسبوع لمناقشة هذه القضايا. وسألوه أيضا عما يقال من إنه سوف يتخلي عن منصبه العسكري لكي يقف كمدني في الإنتخابات الرئاسية الجديدة. سيكون هذا خطأ تكتيكي كبير ..

و قد غادر حفتر روما الى باريس يوم الخميس لشرح  كل المجريات لأصدقائه فى فرنسا نظرا للتوترات التى ظهرت علنا بين باريس و روما حول ليبيا.

وتشير تقارير غير مؤكدة أيضا إلى أن الإيطاليين ناشدوا حفتر علي ان يتم إرسال قوات من الزنتان الموالية له و مقرها قريب نسبيا من موانئ الزاوية للمساعدة في تدمير داعش في منطقة صبراتة وأيضا في الزاوية نفسها وأجزاء أخرى من طرابلس الغربية، للمساعدة في وقف المهاجرين وتأمين مرافق النفط الهامة في مليتا. هذه هي المخاوف الرئيسية لإيطاليا.

في الختام، ما هو أمر حاسم الآن بالنسبة لأميركا سياسيا وعسكريا على حد سواء هو أن تصبح أكثر انخراطا مع ليبيا، وأكثر من ذلك، أن تعلن للعالم سياسة واضحة وحاسمة في ليبيا خاصة وأن

المؤلفون

  كريستوفر نيكسون كوكس هو حفيد الرئيس ال 37 للولايات المتحدة، ريتشارد نيكسون.

  

   فيليب إسكارافاج هو محلل ليبيا. وهو صهر كريستوفر كيب فوربس الذي هو نائب رئيس مجلس إدارة فوربس ميديا.

ISIS’s NEW HOME IS LIBYA

Saturday, September 30 2017

An important and pertinent article appeared in NEWSMAX yesterday, Friday September 29th, about a former CIA Station Chief’s theories as regards ISIS’s new strategy in the region and one particular point he made of interest in that article resonated with us in particular, as we have been predicting the same eventuality for months.

In the well written article about, Daniel Hoffman a distinguished former CIA Station Chief who spoke of ISIS’s regrouping objectives now they are losing ground.

Hoffman served in various counties notably Russia, Iraq, and Pakistan, specifically stated that the Head of ISIS, Abu Bakr al Baghdadi has essentially decided that ISIS’s only future is to be based in Libya, and that he himself Baghdadi should physical be there to to provide the morale and psychological support to their so called dream of a Caliphate. A new political religious dominated country called The Islamic State to be made up from amongst the countries they have and will in future try to destroy.

Many other good points were made in that article but it is this face that ISIS have decided to move operations from Iraq and Syria to Libya that make a game changer for the War on Terror.

As ISIS continue to lose in Syria and Iraq, they need a ‘new home’ -and they found it and are going there we fear in their thousands. And It’s Libya.

Here is some evidence to back our theory that supports Dennis Hoffman’s assertion. In the past few weeks, little has appeared in the media of the increased intensity in the fighting in Sabratha. The reports that do appear attribute these skirmishes to elements paid secretly by Italian Government to local Sabratha militias fighting ‘people smugglers’ to stop the flow of migrants particularly from Zuwara to Italy. A strategy solely Italy is committed to.

However what the main stream
Media fail to write about are the true reasons for the intensity in fighting in and around Sabratha and Sirte.

Thousands is of ISIS fighters have recently arrived in Libya from Iraq and Syria, where they have had to flee. This is due mostly to Russian bombing of ISIS positions in those two countries, where ISIS are clearly now losing – and the logistical and medical provided covertly from Turkey. Their embarkation for Turkey’s two way traffic is the airport at the city of Misrata, a mid point between Sirte and Sabratha. The areas these ISIS retreaters are heading to are in and around two critical military strategic places for ISIS, Sirte and Sabratha.

It enables them to open new fronts and reprioritise their strategy.

Why is because it gives them striking distance from Sirte to the oil terminals of the crescent and as far as Sabratha is concerned, ISIS have plans to start launching attacks on Tunisia and later Algeria and Morocco . This is in part because many of the returning ISIS fighters are originally from Tunisia and it seems their idea is to bring turmoil to their country of origin as well as to Libya, so they need a base to operate such activities from. Then to expand into other North African countries.

This is the new ISIS strategy, make no mistake.

As far as the Sabratha region is concerned, new ISIS attacks have been fiercely defended by the Libyan Anti-ISIS Operations Room (AIOR).

A side issue and worry for Sabratha, especially for UNESCO, is further potential damage to the hitherto well preserved Roman ruins dating back thousands of years of the ancient Roman city of Sabratha.

There was for the first time shelling last week by ISIS of the famous Amphitheatre and UNESCO has called for an end to attacks on this major heritage site. The beginning of a replay of what ISIS did to Palmyra in Syria where they destroyed thousands of years of irreplaceable historic statues and monuments dating back to the Bronze Age.

A 65 year old British old hand, also an old family friend and reliable source, who was in Sabratha recently, a MENA political analyst, Richard Galustian, an expert on the region, said “Reporting from Libya generally and specifically from Sabratha seems to have understated the fact of a new influx of ISIS fighters who have retreated from Syria and Iraq” adding “the Press only seem to want to write about attributing the blame on increased fighting in Libya on the Italian Government for fueling the fighting for their own objectives” Galustian further states “to be specific its because they, the Italians, pay certain militias to fight people smugglers, but that is the lessor of the problem; its these new ISIS fighters coming into Libya in their thousands that is the real problem”.

The Italian Government has gone out of its way to explain the situation to Field Marshall Haftar, who visited Rome earlier this week to discuss these issues. They also asked him it is reported to stand down his military position in order to stand as a civilian in new Presendential elections. This would be a huge tactical error.

Haftar left Rome to Paris on Thirsday to explain all to his friends in France given the publicly displayed tensions between Paris and Rome over Libya.

Unconfirmed reports also have suggested that the Italians appealed to Haftar in the short term to send Zintani based troops loyal to him based relatively close to Zawia ports, to help destroy ISIS in the Sabratha region and also in Zawia itself and other other parts of Western Tripoli, to also help stop immigrants and secure it’s important oil facilities at Melitia. These being Italy’s prime two concerns.

In conclusion what now is critical is for America both militarily and politically to become more engaged with Libya, and more than that, to announce to the World a clear and decisive Libya policy particularly now ISIS have shifted their Interests to that country.

Authors:

Christopher Nixon Cox is a lawyer who is the grandson of the 37th President of the United States, Richard Nixon.
&
Phillip Escaravage is a Libya analyst and son-in-law of Christopher ‘Kip’ Forbes who is the Vice Chairman of Forbes Media.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

The National Commission for Human Rights in Libya calls for the formation of an international commission of inquiry on the assassination of Gaddafi


The National Commission for Human Rights in Libya calls for the formation of an international commission of inquiry on the assassination of Gaddafi

 

Iwan Libya – Agencies:

The National Human Rights Commission in Libya called on the United Nations Secretariat and the International Criminal Court to form an international commission of inquiry into the assassination of the late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

On Wednesday, the Human Rights Committee issued a statement revealing the role of Qatar and France, and their involvement in the “liquidation” of Gaddafi, until his voice is completely absent and does not disclose any matters related to sensitive international issues.

The organization confirmed that it had information indicating the involvement of the State of Qatar through the former Emir Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani in the killing of Muammar Gaddafi after personally ordering the commander of his own forces to eliminate him as a result of the dangerous information he had in possession of the rulers of Qatar and their role of sabotage and support for terrorist and extremist organizations in Niger Chad, Afghanistan and Somalia, and their attempts to stir up chaos and support opposition forces in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Syria and Yemen.

The organization added that the information and reports that Colonel Gaddafi was killed by the French intelligence agent, on the direct orders of former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, in order to hide information and secrets in possession of, including financial support of former French President Sarkozy in the presidential elections as well as the investment and economic conflict In Africa.

The National Committee for Human Rights in Libya expressed its strong dissatisfaction and condemnation at the continued silence and suspiciousness of the International Criminal Court over the murder of the late Colonel Muammar Gaddafi and his son Mu’tasim Bellah after being captured alive on October 20, 2011. The city of Sirte, considering that the murder of Gaddafi and his son Mu’tasim al-Bilu after their families are alive, their bodies are brutally abused and their burial in an unknown place is a full-fledged war crime and a violation of international humanitarian law and the Geneva Conventions.

The International Criminal Court  (ICC) is to assume its international legal responsibilities by calling for a thorough investigation into the killing of Mu’ammar al-Qadhafi and his son, Mu’tasim Bellah, and identifying the local, regional and international parties involved.

 

 

 

QATAR’S SUPPORT OF THE WORST OF THE WORST IN LIBYA MUST END


QATAR’S SUPPORT OF THE WORST OF THE WORST IN LIBYA MUST END

By

Libyans wave their new national flag (L) and Qatar’s flag during a ceremony announcing the liberation for the country in the eastern city of Benghazi on October 23, 2011 three days after ousted despot Moamer Kadhafi was captured and killed. Photo: Abdullah Doma/AFP/Getty

 

Libya’s eastern-based government joined Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt in cutting ties with Qatar in June, with Foreign Minister Mohammed al-Deri asserting that Doha was “harboring terrorism.” The move reflected longstanding grievances expressed by Libya’s non-Islamist forces about Qatar’s sponsorship of extremists in the war-torn country. And while the meddling in Libya doesn’t get a lot of coverage, it remains one of the key grievances of Qatar’s foes in the current diplomatic crisis.

Since the 2011 revolution, Libya has been the site of a rather nasty proxy war. The UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and other traditional Gulf states have backed the eastern-based government and Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA). Seeking a more Islamist order in Libya, Qatar and Turkey backed the Muslim Brotherhood, and more recently, the Tripoli-based General National Congress (GNC).

According to press reports, Qatar has been sending massive amounts of weapons and cash to Islamist militants battling the Western-backed government in Libya. A March 2013 U.N. report noted that in 2011 and 2012, Qatar violated the U.N. arms embargo by “providing military material to the revolutionary forces through the organization of a large number of flights and the deliveries of a range of arms and ammunition.”

And according to another report in the Egyptian al-Masry al-Youm, Doha has provided more than 750 million euros ($890 million) to extremist groups in Libya since 2011. Arab officials believe that this assistance arrives in Western Libya by way of a commercial airline that is bankrolled by Qatar.

But the Arab states are not simply bothered by Qatar’s support for garden variety Islamists. They allege that Qatar is directly backing the worst of the worst. And they appear to be correct.

According to Kristian Coates Ulrichsen of the Baker Institute for Public Policy, “Qatar developed close links with key Islamist militia commanders [in Libya] such as Abdelhakim Belhadj, once the head of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group and, in 2011, the commander of the Tripoli Brigade.” The LIFG is an al-Qaeda affiliate group that was sanctioned by both the United States and the United Nations.

Belhadj twice met with Osama bin Laden, and he was detained by the CIA in 2004. He launched Hizb al-Watan in 2012, which Arab officials say has maintained close ties to LIFG and received continued support from Qatar.

Ulrichsen also notes the connection between Qatar and “Ismael al-Salabi, the leader of one of the best-supplied rebel militias, the Rafallah al-Sahati Companies. Qatar was widely suspected of arming and funding al-Salabi’s group, whose sudden munificence of resources in 2011 earned it the nickname of the ‘Ferrari 17 Brigade.’”

Ismael al-Salabi’s brother, Ali al-Salabi, is a prominent Libyan cleric close to the emir of Qatar. One Egyptian source claims that he maintains close ties to the LIFG. This is a claim echoed by Arab officials familiar with the situation in Libya.

On June 8, the LNA held a press conference alleging proof of Qatar’s malign role in Libya. The LNA charged that Qatari intelligence General Salim Ali al-Jarboui supported al-Qaeda, the Islamic State, and the Muslim Brotherhood by transferring $8 billion from the Qatari Tunisian National Bank to the Housing Bank of Tataouine Governorate in southern Tunisia.

According to the LNA, Qatar supported the assassination of senior officials, facilitated training of Islamist extremists by Hamas, and helped transport Libyan Islamists to Syria. The LNA also presented a letter purportedly penned by Mohammed Hamad Al Hajri, acting charge d’affaires at the Qatar Embassy in Libya, alleging that Qatar had deployed military units to the country.

In June, when Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, and Egypt first issued theirterrorist list” of 59 individuals and 12 entities linked to Qatar, it included one entity (the Benghazi Defense Brigades) and five individuals from Libya. The LNA then released a second list of 75 Libyan individuals and nine organizations tied to Qatar. A third list, issued by the Arab states in late July, include two individuals and six organizations reportedly based in Libya. One highlight of the first list includes Al-Sadiq Abd al-Rahman Ali al-Ghiryani, who previously served the Grand Mufti of Libya, who has called for the destruction of the eastern government.

The allegations of Qatari malign behavior in Libya continue. The Libyan army spokesman just last week described Qatar, Sudan, and Turkey as “the triad of terrorism” in Libya. He also stated that, “a number of Qatari aircraft are regularly landing in Libya in 2017 to support terrorist groups.”

The Libyan war is not likely to be solved anytime soon. Nor is the Gulf crisis with Qatar, for that matter. But putting a stop to Qatar’s meddling in Libya might make it easier to solve both.

Gen. Mike Flynn: Why Hillary’s record on Libya is even worse than you think


Gen. Mike Flynn: Why Hillary’s record on Libya is even worse than you think

By Michael Flynn

A failed state, a terrorist haven, four dead Americans – this is the Hillary Clinton record in Libya we know about.

But new evidence — and a review of the public record — reveals that Hillary Clinton’s actions in Libya were not just disastrous policy, but a violation of U.S. anti-terrorism law.

A recent report to the Foreign Affairs Committee of the British House of Commons concluded that Western intervention in Libya was based on “inaccurate intelligence” and “erroneous assumptions.” Advocates failed to recognize that “the threat to civilians was overstated and that the rebels included a significant Islamist element,” and the failure to plan for a post-Qaddafi Libya led to the “growth of ISIL” in North Africa.

However, “inaccurate intelligence” doesn’t fully describe the whole story. A closer examination of the run-up to the Libya debacle on September 11, 2012 leads to the irrefutable conclusion that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton knowingly armed radical Islamist terrorists in Libya.

False pretenses

The American public was told that the intervention in Libya was necessary to prevent a humanitarian crisis. But just as Hillary Clinton would describe the attack on our Benghazi diplomats as a spontaneous protest over a video, the military intervention that led inexorably to the debacle in Benghazi was sold on false pretenses: to prevent an imminent massacre of civilians engaged in a pro-democracy uprising.

Hillary Clinton described the 2011 Arab Spring rebellion in eastern Libya as a spontaneous pro-democracy uprising, but the Libyan connection to radical Islamic extremist groups was well known long before 2011.

The region where the rebellion began was a fervid recruiting ground for jihadis who killed American forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The leaders of the “civilian uprising” that Hillary Clinton supported were members of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) who had pledged allegiance to Al Qaeda. They refused to take orders from non-Islamist commanders and assassinated the then leader of the rebel army, Abdel Fattah Younes.

The LIFG had been jailed under Qaddafi until hundreds of their members were released through a de-radicalization program. That program was spearheaded by an exiled Muslim Brotherhood affiliated Libyan cleric based in Qatar named Ali al-Sallabi. The jihadis pledged they would never use violence against Gaddafi again.

But nearly as soon as the LIFG was released they took up arms against the Qaddafi regime.

Just as there was ample evidence that Hillary’s “pro-democracy protestors” were radical Islamists, there was no truth to the assertion a civilian massacre was imminent.

Libyan doctors told United Nations investigators that, of the more than 200 corpses in Tripoli’s morgues following fighting in late February 2011, only two were female. This indicates Qaddafi’s forces targeted male combatants and did not indiscriminately attack civilians. Nor had Qaddafi forces attacked civilians after retaking towns from the rebels in early February 2011.

While Muammar Qaddafi had a 40-year record of appalling human rights violations, his abuses did not include large-scale attacks on Libyan civilians. We restored full diplomatic relations with Qaddafi in 2007 and he was a key partner in counter-terrorism efforts.

LIFG and affiliated jihadis received at least 18 shipments of arms from Qatar with the blessing of the U.S., the Wall Street Journal reports. The arms shipments were funneled through none other than Ali al-Sallabi, the Qatar cleric who brokered their release from prison.

The Islamists were able to pay for the weapons because Clinton had convinced Obama to grant full diplomatic recognition to the rebels, against the advice of State Department lawyers and the Secretary of Defense.

As the Washington Post reported, this move “allowed the Libyans access to billions of dollars from Qaddafi’s frozen accounts.”

These arms shipments are significant for several reasons. It led to the indictment of American arms dealer Marc Turi who was charged with selling weapons to Islamist militants in Libya through Qatar. The charges were dropped this week after Turi threatened to reveal emails showing Clinton had approved the sales.

Here’s where it gets very sticky for Secretary Clinton. The rebel leaders were on the State Department’s Foreign Terrorist Organization list. It is a direct violation of the law to provide material support for terrorist organizations under 18 U.S. Code 2339A & 2339B. Penalties for providing or attempting to provide material support to terrorism include imprisonment from 15 years to life.

Nor is the Qatar connection insignificant. Qatar has donated anywhere from $1 to $5 million to the Clinton Foundation, and emails reveal members of the Qatari royal family were privileged with back channel meetings with Secretary Clinton at the State Department. While whipping up support for the Libya military campaign, Clinton told Arab leaders, “it’s important to me personally,” the Washington Post reported.

Hillary Clinton’s prosecution of foreign policy in Libya crossed several lines: she showed extremely bad judgment by ignoring military and intelligence officials, she let personal interests conflict with U.S. foreign policy and, most importantly, she may have broken the law — again.

Any one of these transgressions should disqualify her from holding any kind of leadership role in our government, let alone president of the United States. The last one qualifies Hillary Clinton for government housing, though not in the White House.

Origins of Arab-Israeli conflict


Origins of Arab-Israeli conflict

By Asif Baron Raja

To cast Muslims as the ‘enemy’ of Jews is distortion of history. Judaism resembles Islam in theology, structure and rituals far more than with Christianity. Historically, the Muslims treated the Jews fairly and humanely. Unlike in Europe where the Jews were hounded and ruthlessly persecuted, the Muslim rulers didn’t consider the Jews as infidels and were not proselytized. The Jews lived manifestly better in Muslim societies when compared with their stay within the Christian world. This is evident from the munificence and humility shown by the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) towards the Jews. They were treated justly and kindheartedly by Muslim rulers during their golden rule in Spain and during the rule of the mighty Ottomans. Anti-Semitics was practiced by the Christians only. Accusing them of crucifying the Christ, the Jews were not only made to live in ghettoes in Europe but they also had to endure periodic massacres by Europeans.

It must also not be forgotten that Pope Urban II instigated the Christians in the name of religion and launched a crusade in 1095 to reclaim Jerusalem. The crusaders captured Jerusalem mainly because of disunity among the Muslims. The Old City was soaked in ankle deep human blood of Muslims and Jews. The crusaders were roundly defeated by Salahuddin Ayubi in the third crusade (1187-92) in the epic battle of Hattin mainly because he succeeded in achieving unity among the Arabs. Out of five crusades spread over two centuries, four were lost to the Muslims and the Jews played no role in defending Jerusalem. Logically, the Jews should have sought Muslims help to fight against the Christians to seek revenge, but ironically the two erstwhile antagonists joined hands to repress the Muslims.

None can deny that for over 1400 years, Muslim Arabs have been predominant in Palestine and in Jerusalem. In the 19th century, Palestine was inhabited by multi-cultural population with 86% Muslims, 10% Christians and 4% Jews living in peace. Extremist Jews called Zionists decided to create a separate homeland for the Jews. Accordingly, from late 19th century, the Jews spread all over the world were motivated by the Zionists to relocate to Palestine under a calculated plan. Great Britain which was in control of Palestine granted them permission to emigrate. Their influx disturbed the local inhabitants and heightened tensions.

During the First World War, the British Empire convinced the Arab leaders in 1916 to revolt against the Ottoman Empire promising them an independent Arab State including Palestine. However, contrary to the given commitment, Balfour Declaration in 1917 envisaged establishment of a Jewish State in Palestine since the Europeans desperately wanted to get rid of troublesome Jews. In 1920, European colonial powers divided Ottoman Empire into series of separate States and shared the spoils of war in the Middle East. Once Hitler gained power in Germany, the Jews eating into the vitals of German economy came under the axe of Nazis. When they refused to depart despite repeated threats, about 6 million Jews were killed, although some doubt the Holocaust.

On November 29, 1947, the UN General Assembly under Zionist pressure recommended partition of Palestine into two States and internationalization of Jerusalem under UN administration. Minority Jews were to receive 57% and the majority Arabs 43% of land. After the plan was approved by the US, the State of Israel was proclaimed on May 14, 1948. Rejection of the partition plan and creation of Israel by the Arab States led to 1948 Arab-Israeli war. Greatly helped by over 4000 war veterans of 2nd World War residing in US, Canada and Europe, the augmented Israeli Army defeated the poorly trained armies of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Trans-Jordon, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Egypt and captured 78% of Palestine. 750,000 Palestinians were driven out into refugee camps. Their breakdown was 2 million in Jordon, 427057 in Lebanon, 47770 in Syria, 788108 in West Bank, 1.1 million in Gaza and a quarter million internally displaced within new Jewish State of Israel, living under squalid and humiliating conditions as second rated citizens. Systematic ethnic cleansing of Palestinians was undertaken by Zionists and over 500 villages/towns were depopulated and destroyed.

After the end of war in 1949, Jordan occupied East Jerusalem and West Bank while Egypt took control of Gaza Strip in Sinai. In 1956, armies of Britain, France and Israel invaded Sinai after Egypt under Jamal Nasser nationalized Suez Canal. After the ceasefire enforced by the UN and withdrawal of invaders under international pressure, Israeli forces moved into Palestinian garrison based in Khan Younis which had refused to surrender and carried out gruesome massacre of 124 Palestinians in Rafah refugee camp. In the six-day war in 1967, Israel annexed Golan Heights in Syria, Jordon’s West Bank and Gaza Strip from Egypt. Since then, Israel is in military occupation of these lands. In the 1973 war, few Pakistani pilots took part in the Syrian air battles and downed several Israeli jets and checkmated Israeli aerial onslaught. Israeli ground forces captured Sinai Peninsula but returned it to Egypt after signing Camp David Accord in 1978.

After the debacle in 1967 war, Al-Fatah founded in 1959 joined PLO and Yasser Arafat became its chairman in 1969. That year, PLO carried out 2432 guerrilla attacks on Israel and became a force to reckon with. Arafat led the resistance movement against Israeli aggressive and expansionist policies resolutely and in short time internationalized the PLO movement. After battling with Israeli forces in Karameh in Jordon, PLO began to assert its authority and tended to mount a coup in Jordon. It impelled King Hussein to launch an all out offensive in September 1970. In this, Pakistani military advisor Brig Ziaul Haq guided Jordanian Army and helped it in expelling Fatah fighters.

They had to shift to Lebanon where they recouped and militarized 400,000 Palestinian refugees living in camps. PLO created a state-within-state in West Beirut and Southern Lebanon and then clashed with Maronite Christian Phalangists in 1975 which triggered civil war. The infighting propelled Syria to intervene in Lebanon in June 1976 with 30,000 troops. PLO fighters kept targeting Israeli targets as well, prompting Israel to invade Lebanon in March 1978 but it failed to dismantle PLO HQ. Another force which posed a challenge to Israel was Iran backed Hezbollah in Beirut in late 1970s. In the same timeframe intifada sparked in occupied Palestinian territories. Israeli troops killed thousands of teenagers armed with sling shots and stones. Israeli invasion of Lebanon in June 1982 which went up to Beirut was led by Gen Aerial Sharon. 2-3000 Palestinians in Sabra and Shatila camps were massacred by Phalangists under direct supervision of Sharon in September 1982. PLO had to pullout and shift to Tunisia and later to West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Suicide attack on US Embassy in Beirut on April 18, 1982 followed by another attack on October 23, 1983 on Marine HQ killing 241 Marines and attack on French paratroopers’ barracks killing 58 French soldiers forced the foreign forces to quit Lebanon. Civil war in Lebanon raged till 1990 claiming 120,000 fatalities.

Under intense pressure of the US and continued Israeli obduracy, Arafat made a huge compromise by foregoing PLO’s stance of not recognizing existence of Israel and agreeing to sign US brokered Oslo Peace Accords in 1993 whereby Israel recognized Palestinian Authority (PA) and gave it limited autonomy over West Bank and Gaza Strip in return for peace. The PA had however no control over borders, water and airspace. The Accord was in actuality a ruse to end Intifada which had brought a bad name to Israel. Instead of honoring the commitment and letting the PA to run an independent Palestinian State with Jerusalem as its capital, Israel continued with its forward settlement policy into West Bank at neck break speed to change the demographic structure. This illegal settlement is going on unabated to this day. It wanted the Palestinians to give right of existence to Israel but denied this right to the Palestinian State. Oslo Accords gave birth to Hamas, an offshoot of Ikhwanul Muslimeen/Muslim Brotherhood, which believed in continuation of resistance movement till the accomplishment of goals.

In 1994 Israel carried out partial withdrawal from Gaza Strip and later withdrew from Lebanon in 2000. However, it continued to persecute the Palestinians which triggered 2nd Intifada. Besides constructing a security fence in West Bank in 2002/03, Israel stepped up its campaign against Hamas as well as targeted assassination of prominent Palestinians. Multiple pressures affected the health of Arafat and after prolonged illness he died in November 2004 in Paris hospital under mysterious circumstances. It was widely speculated that he was slow-poisoned by Mossad. In 2012, the French authorities exhumed his body to investigate the allegations and it was confirmed that he was poisoned with polonium-210.

After his death, Mahmood Abbas became PLO’s Chairman and later President of PA but he couldn’t fit into the shoes of Arafat and soon the Fatah Party gave in to corruption and comforts of life and got factionalized and in turn strengthened Hamas. Izz al Din Qassam Brigade was formed by a small group of school kids in Central Gaza to confront Israeli aggression. By September 2005, Israeli troops completely withdrew from Gaza. In January 2006, Hamas won the elections and ousted Fatah government, which by then had become unpopular. It triggered infighting but in June 2007, much to the chagrin of Israel, Hamas fighters seized control over Gaza Strip and formed a government, restricting Abbas led Fatah government to Israeli controlled West Bank only. Tel Aviv refused to recognize democratically elected Hamas government and clamped down stringent controls over movement and flow of daily commodities into/out of Gaza enclave. The US and the West backed Israeli stance and jointly declared Hamas a terrorist outfit. Israel then widened rift between Fatah and Hamas to keep them on warpath.

Since then, Gaza Strip which is only 41 km long and crammed with 1.7 million Palestinians have remained under Israeli military control and economic siege and even Egypt under pro-US/Israeli Hosni Mubarak became part of the siege. Tel Aviv refuses to honor the Oslo Accords it had signed in 1993, giving Palestinians the right to establish an independent State in Gaza Strip and West Bank with Jerusalem as its capital or Jerusalem becoming a common capital for both. Israel has refused to lift siege of Gaza as promised in 2012 agreement and continued the land and sea blockade. Two-State solution duly endorsed by the UN goes against the master plan of establishing ‘Greater Israel’. Over 10,000 Palestinian men, women and children are held in Israeli prisons. Physical abuse and torture are a routine. Refugees are prohibited to return to their homeland. The lands on which Israelis are being settled are prime lands. Water sources are under the control of Israel. Not a bird can fly into Gaza Strip without the permission of Israel. Any ship attempting to send relief goods is seized and cargo confiscated. According to Robert Fisk, ‘Future Palestinian State will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel’.

Besides the economic blockade, Gaza was subjected to frequent aerial and artillery assaults as well as ground offensives by Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) in order to fail the Hamas regime. Israeli forces launched brutal offensives in 2007, Operation Cast Lead in December 2008/January 2009, and Operation Pillar of Defence in November 2012 (8-day war). In each offensive, hundreds of Gazans including children died. Egypt added to the miseries of people of Gaza by blocking Rafah crossing and destroying secret tunnels opening into Sinai. Only time the two were on friendly terms was during the one year rule of Morsi from June 2012 to July 2, 2013, who helped in arranging truce in November 2012, but ouster of Morsi regime and replacement by pro-Israel military regime has once again put Hamas under huge disadvantage.

Alignment of Hezbollah and Hamas during Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 2006 put Israel on the back foot for the first time. IDF suffered maximum fatalities in this war and the myth of invincibility of IDF was broken for the first time by Hezbollah. Iran helped Hamas in improving its defensive capability by providing rockets. It must not be forgotten that Hamas is devoid of army, air force, air defence, navy and intelligence and pitched against US-West backed IDF which is laced with most advanced weapon systems. Owing to fearless resistance offered by al-Qassam fighters against all odds, all Israeli offensives proved inconclusive and Hamas earned moral victory.

In 2012, the UN General Assembly upgraded the Palestinian status at the UN from ‘observer entity’ to ‘Non-member State’, which by implication was a de facto recognition of an independent Palestinian State. Reconciliation pact was signed between Fatah Party and Islamist Hamas on April 23, 2014 which called for uniting the two feuding factions and forming a unity government. The two sides agreed to establish an interim government of independents that would organize elections, thus ending seven years old rivalry which suited Israel. On May 29, 2014, President Mahmoud Abbas ignoring threat of sanctions by Israel asked PM Rami Hamdullah to head a new national unity government and the long awaited unity government took oath on June 2, 2014 at Ramallah. Gaza’s Prime Minister Ismail Haniyah and his cabinet resigned and 17-member cabinet, all politically independent, was selected after mutual consultations of Fatah and Hamas. Although the reconciliation agreement has held, a lot of bad blood still remains between Hamas and West Bank leadership.

Israel, which is an artificial implant in the Muslim heartland, got highly perturbed over the unification of Fatah and Hamas and in reaction established 1500 new settlements in New Jerusalem and West Bank. Israel tried hard to break the unity and reactivate their enmity. In revenge of the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli youths on June 12, 2014, alleged to be the handiwork of Hamas activists, a 15-year old Palestinian Tariq Abu Khudair was arrested by Israeli Police in East Jerusalem on July 3, 2014 and beaten to pulp. His 16-year old cousin M. Abu Khudair was kidnapped, beaten to near-death and then burnt to death by the three Israeli teens in Jerusalem on July 4. Over 460 Palestinians in West Bank and East Jerusalem were arrested and jailed on suspicion and their homes demolished. Social media sprang into action and young Jewish boys and girls started posting flurry of messages seeking death to Palestinians. An individual act subjected 1.7 million Gazans to collective punishment.

These vicious acts prompted the armed wing of Hamas Izzel-Deen al-Qassam to fire rockets over Israeli southern towns including city of Ashdod in protest. Hamas fired 800 rockets during the conflict most of which were intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome anti-missile system. In reaction, IDF launched an airstrike on July 1, 2014 striking 15 Hamas sites in Gaza Strip. From July 8 onwards, Israel broke the 2012 truce and unleashed Operation Protective Edge. Thousands of young volunteers from the western world streamed in to Israel to take part in the massacre of Gazans. This inflow caused no anxiety to the western world as in the case of western Jihadists taking part in Syrian and Iraqi conflicts. Hamas fighters killed 50 Israeli soldiers.

3250 aerial strikes and gunfire by Israel killed over 1050 Palestinians, mostly women and children including handicapped, injured 5500 including 950 children and 90 women and destroyed over 500 homes. Hamas homes were the preferential targets. Over 77% fatalities were of innocent civilians. On an average, seven children were killed daily. It was soul searing to watch the pictures of mutilated bodies of children. One such picture was that of four-year old lovely Sahar Salman Abu Namous before and after his decapitation by an Israeli shell.

It was the worst flare-up and was for sure in reaction to reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah. Israeli leadership particularly defence minister Moshe Ya’alon wished to completely obliterate Hamas infrastructure once and for all to prevent future rocket attacks. Dani Dayon urged the government to cut off fuel and electricity to Gaza. Netanyahu asked 100,000 Gazans to vacate northern Gaza. Fearing ground assault, over 10,000 Gazans took shelter in installations of UN agency, but even the UN run school was not spared. Hospitals remained short of medicines and equipment. Repeated bombardments destroyed the vulnerable water system rendering hundreds of thousands without water. Israeli forces besides using chemicals also using flechette shells which sprayed thousands of tiny and lethal metal darts. Israel had turned Gaza Strip into an experimental laboratory for its high-tech weapons industry and chemicals. Israelis behaved worse than Nazis and were criminals in every law of the civilized world.

Amid worldwide protests condemning genocide of people of Gaza by IDFs, Egypt proposed a ceasefire on July 15 without consulting Hamas. It was silent on sea blockade and compensation for human/material losses incurred by Gazans. Those shortfalls shortened the life of ceasefire to six hours only. Continuation of rocket attacks by Hamas and other militant groups like Islamic Jihad, Popular Front/Democratic Front for Liberation of Palestine impelled Israel to resume aerial offensive followed by ground offensive on July 19 which took the lives of 42 Israeli soldiers and three civilians. One Israeli soldier was captured alive. Israel disregarded UN proposed humanitarian ceasefire on July 26 for 24 hours.

The Israeli forces laced with latest state-of-art weaponry ruthlessly bombed densely crowded refugee camps, schools, apartments, mosques and hospitals. They rained bombs unchecked since they knew the other side was devoid of an adequate response action. They were also confident that their excesses will not be questioned. Operation Protective Edge was aimed at punishing Gazans for bestowing confidence in the leadership of Hamas, forcibly obliterating Hamas network or bringing it to its knees.

Champions of democracy and human rights mired in hypocrisy, double-standards and Orwellian lies instead of bridling the monster projected Israel as the victim of aggression and patted it on the back that it has the right to defend itself and to go any length to safeguard its people. The US led west shed copious tears over the so-called piteous plight of the Israelis. The Israelis mourned that they had to run for cover each time a rocket was fired and that they couldn’t sleep peacefully because of the noise of rockets.

In the calculation of Israel and biased west, Palestinians are an expendable commodity while Israeli Jews are holy cows and have license to kill. For the US, security of Israel is top most priority. The western world remained silent over vicious bombing of IDFs massacring so many in open prison of Gaza and was not moved over the heart-wrenching sights of cruelly killed infants and wailing mothers. World powers including the biased UN insisted upon Hamas to stop rocket attacks that had caused death to one Israeli soldier and injury to two and politely requested Israel to show ‘maximum restraint’. For a single death of Israeli, hundreds of Palestinians were killed and their properties destroyed. Jewish controlled CNN, Fox News, CNBC, BBC uttered sheer lies to project racist Israel as victim of aggression and Palestinians as terrorists.

The American leadership bears the taunts and barbs of Israeli leaders smilingly and not only accept their blackmailing tactics submissively but also defends Israel’s black deeds resolutely and bend over backwards to keep it in good humor. Obama has doled out more aid to Israel than any president ever. This policy of appeasing Israel has been going on for decades and there are no signs of any change in this policy despite the fact that over a period of time the American public has got weary of Israel. While the Americans detest the repulsive arrogance and high-handedness of Israeli leaders and feel pity for the victims of Israeli unabated savagery, they abhor their leadership getting dictated by Israel and that too at the cost of American interests. They have seen the ugly face of Israel which is in illegal occupation of Palestinian lands since 1967 and is consistently gobbling up additional territory under the scheme of forward settlement of Jews and persecuting the subjugated Palestinians.

They are now questioning as to why their government remains subservient to the commands of Tel Aviv when it doles out largest share of aid ($3 billion) to it each year. They ask as to why Israel’s wanton crimes and injustices against Palestinians are being willfully ignored and its criminal acts backed. Such resentful sentiments are heard all over the world and voices of concern against Israeli Apartheid can be heard from all quarters. Support to Israel is diminishing in Europe as well and calls are being made to try Israeli leaders for war crimes in international court of justice. Even Jews in Israel are turning away from vindictive and violent policies pursued by their Zionist leaders.

Notwithstanding the barbarity of Israel and connivance of the US-western leadership, what is more painful is the abysmal role of the OIC and the Arab League in particular and the Muslim world in general. Their shameful silence and dreary approach is appalling. One is equally nonplussed over the indifference of dozens of Jihadi groups in Middle East towards the dilemma of marooned Gazans being mercilessly slaughtered by bestial Israelis. There is no Salahuddin Ayubi in the entire span of Muslim world to face up to the Israeli challenge. None has the ability to unite the Arab world since they direly lack Salahuddin’s piety, his mysticism, and his human and fighting abilities. The people of Gaza who in the past used to look towards Egypt are today cursing the ruling regime. Within the Muslim world only Pakistani, Turkish and Iranian armies backed by Pak air force are capable of roundly defeating US-NATO supported IDF in the battlefield.

The Muslim leaders must rise from their slumber and pick up courage to remind Israel that Muslims have historically greater claim over the holy city of Jerusalem and Israel is an illegitimate child of the west illegally occupying Palestinian land. As a minimum, they should take advantage of the change in the thinking of American and European public and collectively exert pressure on Israel to immediately stop the genocide of people of Gaza, end the inhuman blockade of Gaza, vacate the Palestinian lands under its illegal occupation and grant Palestinian refugees the right to return to their homeland. West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem are under illegal military occupation of Israel for the last 48 years. The UN and UNSC permanent members must play their role and let Palestinians establish their state as agreed to in Oslo Accord in 1993.