Archive for July, 2018

News and Analysis (7/17/18)

Tuesday, July 17th, 2018
There may be more Muslims running for office than ever before in the U.S. but they face challenges that range from haters to admirers who won’t support opponents because they fear that Muslims just can’t win:
By responding to the question of cooperation with Russia on Syria that both U.S. and Russia “work very well together with Israel, and Israel’s security is a driving issue” Trump “reduced this to an Israeli issue rather than the broader regional conflict that it represents” …

… meanwhile, by appealing to Joe Walsh’s eagerness to suck up to Israel, comedian Sasha Baron Cohen tricks the radio show host and former Congressman into supporting a ludicrous plan to arm three-year-old children:

They don’t like it, but with Israel taking away their water and preventing them from holding jobs in Israel, for many Palestinians growing tobacco is the only option …

… and in violation of the Geneva conventions Israel has kept bodies in morgues, in military cemeteries and “at the infamous ‘cemeteries of numbers‘”:

“A group of American Jews visiting Israel on a free Birthright trip walked off the tour during a visit to the City of David in Jerusalem to visit a Palestinian family who is facing eviction from their eastern Jerusalem home”

There is a “fear that Trump, egged on by the Saudis and Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, … may privately offer de facto US recognition of Crimea’s annexation and an easing of Ukraine-related sanctions” for “Putin’s agreement to push Iran out of Syria, thereby safeguarding Israel’s border”:

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted, “Iran is committed to the rule of law in the face of US contempt for diplomacy & legal obligations. It’s imperative to counter its habit of violating int’l law”:

China wields “an iron fist to weed out what it calls “religious extremism” and “separatism” in the wake of deadly unrest, throwing ethnic Uygurs into shadowy re-education camps without due process for minor infractions such as owning a Koran or even growing a beard”:

“The country which is often in the spotlight for its Islamophobic social policies won the ultimate footballing prize with a team that is one-third Muslim”:

“Wilmington Mayor Mike Purzycki said the city was wrong to use a vaguely-worded policy to bar Muslim kids wearing cotton shirts, shorts and headscarves from the city’s Foster Brown pool”:

News and Analysis (7/14/18)

Saturday, July 14th, 2018

FDD helped “propel the administration to unapologetically implement a widely unpopular policy … [thanks to] ties to powerful administration insiders … combined with a seemingly open-ended invitation to testify before Congress, … [and] close ties to the GOP establishment and hawkish Democrats”:

They were told they had to leave the pool because they were wearing cotton and/or because it was over capacity, but other who were wearing cotton and/or had been there longer were not asked to leave:

After killing a 15 year-old and a 20-year old at the Gaza border demonstrations, the Israelis launched air strikes that killed two more teenage civilians and provoked a response of rocket attacks by Hamas …

… while Jewish settlers will now be allowed to build on lands of a Palestinian neighborhood in Silwan whose “nearly 4,000 Palestinian residents … have been prevented for years by the Israeli government from any type of building or construction work under the pretext of preserving the national park” …

… and by refusing to let “foreign nationals … add value to the community, by not letting them come in, the quality of life is reduced and that is more suffocating for Palestinians forcing them to leave the country” …

… and the Episcopal Church passed six of fifteen resolutions on “the plight of Palestinian children, the status of Jerusalem, the disproportionate use of lethal force on both sides and ways the Episcopal Church can press for peace through its investment decisions”:

President Trump seems heading to another devastating war with Iran. Any armed conflict with Iran will bring another ugly consequence like Iraq for the US as well as for the Middle East and the world at large:

In Muslim majority Pakistan, it is hard for the non-Muslims to be elected to voice their demand in the parliament. If they have their problems in their neighborhoods, it is not easy for them to press the government to solve them:

The U.S. allows a favored Chinese firm to do business with Iran …

… even as it rebuffs European allies …

… but preventing Lloyd’s from using a partly U.S. owned platform for IT may create new business opportunities for non-U.S. companies:

London streets showed anti-Trump demonstrations when Muslims gathered to pray together on Friday and protested Trump’s policies against the Muslims when he was on an official visit to London …

… which, Rohani says, only shows how “America’s illegal actions … have even isolated it among its own allies”:

Nationalizing a Hindu school and then allowing Muslim teachers to dress as they please in it has stoked tensions in Sro Lanka:

News and Analysis (7/11/18)

Wednesday, July 11th, 2018

“The new law is part of a broader ‘ghetto package‘ designed to force immigrants living in 25 mostly Muslim enclaves to assimilate”:

If Germany prevents the Iranian’s from withdrawing their own money just to placate the U.S., “it could mean the collapse of the Iran nuclear deal, which the European Union still hopes to salvage”:

China forces Muslims to put GPSs on their bikes and cars and give police “smart glasses” that can “notify a patrolling officer when a Uighur Muslim has moved beyond his orher ‘safe area’, that is home or place of work” …

… the campaign, reminiscent of failed attempts to undermine Uyghur culture during the Cultural Revolution, involves the creation of a surveillance state of the future and the forced re-education of large numbers of Turkic Muslims …

… while “[f]or many Palestinians, the knowledge that Israeli authorities are tracking their social media activities is seen as just another level of oppression and restriction in an intractable, ­decades-old conflict”:

Both top officials and the general public have cried out against a decision to block members of religious minority groups from running “for seats in Muslim-majority constituencies” as a violation of  Iran’s constitutional guarantee that members of those communities  may elect their own representatives:

North Korea’s envoy to Sweden and his Israeli counterpart meet in a café in Stockholm to bargain on an old deal:

“Since the village started resisting attempts by the Israeli state to push them out of their land, it has become a heavily policed community. On Wednesday it was both men and women who were beaten by Israeli soldiers in front of their children”:

Anti-Muslim hate correlates with “susceptibility to Muslim radicalization in regions of the U[U.S.] that are poorest and most homogeneous. And it suggests the ethnic diversity of the U.S. may protect against radicalization because people are less prone to pit one group against the other”:

Iranian Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri confirms that Iran’s foreign ministry and the central bank are cautious to take proper steps to keep banking operations active to face the U.S. sanctions. There was no explanation about this statement:

Israel offers to use its lock on the U.S. Congress for Russia’s benefit if it removes the Iranian threat to its continuing occupation of Golan:

Interview by Reza Saiedi on Iranian-American Relations

Monday, July 9th, 2018

[This is the text of free-lance journalist Reza Saedi’s interview with Minaret of Freedom Institute president Imad-ad-Dean Ahmad on Iranian-American relations.]

Q. Please comment: US sanctions have a direct impact on the Iranian civilian population– limiting medical and research supplies, limiting machinery used to maintain civilian transportation systems, etc. While such actions are criticized by the UN and other world organizations dedicated to improving civil society worldwide, the US gives itself (and Israel) permission to ignore the rule of law. 

A. The great economist Frederic Bastiat observed, “If goods don’t cross borders, armies will.” Sanctions in the form of a blockade or embargo constitute an act of war, and if the Trump sanctions fall short of that on a technicality, they nonetheless open the door for war which is precisely what the Neoconservatives and Israel who are behind the sanctions are hoping will be the result.

Q. The parameters by which the US is seeking to keep the sanctions against Iran in place are in violation of international laws. With this being the case, why are other nations willing to comply with American pressure to abide by those sanctions and cut their own relationships with Iran? 

A. The nations willing to comply with the American sanctions are unwilling to bear the short-term costs that are being inflicted upon them by America’s strong economic position, especially as regards American dominance of the international banking due to the central role of the dollar. They could free themselves from this dependence on the dollar by returning to a gold standard, but that is a long-term commitment that short-sighted politicians are loathe to deal with and in any case they perhaps remember that Moammar Qaddafi’s intention “to establish a pan-African currency based on the Libyan golden Dinar” was followed by violent and undignified overthrow

Q. Pres. Trump met with Kim Jong-un and plans to talk with Putin, however in spite of these “diplomatic” steps, Trump has also alienated long-time US allies Europe and Canada and launched a trade war with them and China. How will this schizophrenic foreign policy balance out?

A. As President Trump aligns himself with dictators, oligarchs, and absolute monarchs to the detriment of America’s relationships with liberal democracies and republics, the decline of the American empire will accelerate.

Q. Please comment on the disconnect between the how marches to protest domestic problems in the United States is never portrayed in the media as an attempt to bring down the government, however the smallest march in Iran is blown up to a larger scale and made to appear that Iranians are seeking “regime change”.

A. Although the American media certainly exaggerates the connection between Iranian demonstrations about particular issues and opposition to the regime in general, it would be to Iran’s benefit to understand that such misrepresentations are facilitated by the harshness of the Iranian government’s response to demonstrations against it as compared with the response of the American government to its domestic critics.

Q.The United States is spending billions of dollars on the military, in particular invading Iraq and Afghanistan and also playing a role in Syria. While Trump states that these invasions have brought no positive results for American interests, the help and involvement of Iran in these same conflict zones has been very strategic, although that point goes unnoticed by the mainstream media. Were it not for Iran’s assistance in fighting Daesh in Iraq and Syria, the US would be faced with two newly formed terrorist states in those areas. Would you say that this is a fair assessment? Your comment?

A. This is a fair assessment. The U.S. media that accepts without comment or criticism claims of the Trump administration that it, rather than Iran and the Kurds, has been responsible for the decline of Daesh in Iraq and Syria.

Imad-ad-Dean Ahmad, Ph.D.
Minaret of Freedom Institute
www.minaret.org

News and Analysis (7/9/18)

Monday, July 9th, 2018

It is a war crime for an occupying power to transfer its “civilian population into occupied territory. Passing the bill would simply mean that Ireland is moving to modify its domestic legislation to comply with its third-state obligations” …

… Palestinians refuse to bow to Israeli extortion as the apartheid state threatens to withhold taxes stolen from Palestinian citizens unless the PA withholds welfare payments to the families of people it has imprisoned …

… “For several years, Israel has attempted to block activists who support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which leads a nonviolent campaign aimed at pressuring Israel to adhere to international law”:

Al-Issa “sees no contradiction between opposing the occupation of the Palestinian territories and condemning the Holocaust, which he says ‘shook humanity to the core” and calls for making “East Jerusalem (capital of Palestine) and West Jerusalem (capital of Israel), and there is no choice but peace”:

“Caution in substituting the court’s own judgment for the president’s on a question of national security might normally reflect wise self-restraint. But there is a difference between self-restraint and willful blindness to discrimination”:

“Five world powers agreed with Iran on Friday to forge ahead with negotiations with the country and maintain its ability to export gas and oil as they seek to preserve a nuclear deal with Tehran despite the withdrawal of the United States”:

“Is Trump’s son-in-law – ‘adviser’ on the Middle East, real estate developer and US investor – delusional? After three Arab-Israeli wars, tens of thousands of Palestinian deaths and millions of refugees, does Jared Kushner really believe that the Palestinians will settle for cash?”:

Trump’s Iran policy, not OPEC is behind rising oil prices:

“[T]he recent strike of the bazaari can be seen as a jibe against Rouhani, and an act of support for a conservative, future president.Once again, Iranians are articulating very specific demands related to the economy. But this is a part of the reform process in the country and not a revolutionary movement”:

“The main reasons behind the water shortage are more than thirty powerful pumps installed by the owners of several orchards in neighboring city of Kazeroon on the local river for illegal irrigation of their properties during dark hours of the night” — Dashtestani representative to parliament:

News and Analysis (7/6/18)

Friday, July 6th, 2018

“[T]he sheer cruelty — the scope of the violation of human, i.e., natural individual, rights — of Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians warrants the concern of all who favor freedom and other (classical) liberal values: justice, social cooperation, free exchange, and peace” …

… but Trump and Kushner want the Palestinians to forget “superficial things like independence from the routine abuses and indignities of colonial oppression (that’s right; the same trifles Americans celebrated on July 4) — and focusing instead on what really matters: roads, jobs, and money”:

“We’re at a tipping point, where if this offensive really does go forward, it suddenly becomes a whole lot worse” —  Stephen Rapp, the former U.S. ambassador-at-large for war crimes:

The price of oil goes at least $10 high because of President Trump’s tweet as commented by the Islamic Republic’s OPEC governor, Hossein Kazempour Ardebili. This comment is perceived as taunting to President Trump:

“The 25-year-old began his walk to Palestine from Sweden nearly a year ago to raise awareness about human rights abuse in the occupied territory. After arriving at the Israeli border from Jordan, he was barred from entering Palestine and kept in custody for six hours”:

“Five world powers agreed with Iran on Friday to forge ahead with negotiations with the country and maintain its ability to export gas and oil as they seek to preserve a nuclear deal with Tehran despite the withdrawal of the United States”:

“At this point, countries may not be willing to sacrifice access to the U.S. economy for Iran, but forcing them to choose will certainly cost the United States political capital. And under the Trump administration, that capital is devaluing rapidly”:

“Iranian Central Bank governor Valiollah Seif said the secondary currency market would help ‘minor importers’ buy their dollars, and emphasized that the price of the dollar would be set according to market supply and demand…”:

News and Analysis (7/4/18)

Wednesday, July 4th, 2018

“Muslims arrived initially as explorers and as slaves, and later as farmers, factory workers, and small-business owners. The first freestanding mosques were constructed in the middle of the country, in North Dakota initially and then in Iowa”:

The hypocrisy of accusing the Iranian military of terrorism is underscored by the thirtieth anniversary of the U.S. shooting down a civilian airline flight as well as U.S. indifference to ongoing IDF terrorism:

A poll shows 30% of Palestinians favor the the imprisoned Fatah leader who “enjoys strong grassroots support and has good relations with all factions” followed closely by Hamas’s Ismael Haniyeh with 23%:

As Iran’s fiat currency continues to tank, the government goes after not only cryptocurrencies, but even the monetary commodity approved by the Prophet Muhammad (saws), gold:

Politicians manipulate Muslims as tools to be in power in India–but will not award them with any prestigious political positions:

A provision in South Africa’s Wills Act deprived a woman of her share of her husband’s estate. The Director of the Women’s Legal Centre “says more needs to be done to change legislation and recognise Muslim marriages”:

As foreign ministers meet in Vienna “without the U.S. in order ‘to ensure the continued implementation’ of the Iran nuclear deal and countries such as China, India, South Korea, Turkey, will not be able to replace Iran for oil supply by November, there will be no immediate sanctions:

“Trump’s … pressures on European firms at a time when Nigeria and Libya are in crisis, when Venezuela’s oil exports have fallen due to U.S. sanctions, when Saudi’s domestic consumption has increased … will increases the prices of oil in the global markets”

To punish the Palestinian National Authority for paying the families of jailed members, Israel passes a law to freeze money transfers:

News & Analysis (7/1/18)

Monday, July 2nd, 2018

Arabs need someone to reform society rather than religion, “who uses the popular legitimacy and the authority of religion to promote social and political change” more “Martin Luther King Jr. more than a Martin Luther”:

First Palestinian protest will be held on Monday in Ramallah against the unveiled peace plan of President Trump in the Middle East:

“[A]nger is fueled by the Iranian rial plunging to 90,000 to the dollar — double the government rate of 42,000 — as people watch their savings dwindle and shopkeepers hold onto some goods, uncertain of their true value”:

“Iranian crude oil will be offered on the bourse and the private sector can export it in a transparent way” — First Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri …

… while Afghanis will have economic opportunities as an unintended consequence of Trump’s policy…

… and “India needs Iran for keeping it connected to Central Asia and Russia”:

“…six U.S. presidents before him (Trump) tried this and had to give up,” Khamenei ..,

“…$2-3 million dollars cross the porous borders of the western provinces of Herat, Farah and Nimruz into Iran every day. …A shortage of dollars hurts importers and inconveniences Iranians who travel, study or do business abroad” …

… Iran says that the ban by the U.S. on exporting crude oil will have adverse effect: