Mercury Rising 鳯女

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Archive for June 27th, 2015

Today’s doubletake: Why we need al-Qaeda

Posted by Charles II on June 27, 2015

Ahmed Rashid, New York Review of Books:

In Washington and other Western capitals there is rampant confusion
 about the status and future of al-Qaeda.

…events in the Middle East suggest growing contradictions in Western 
policy. In Syria, the United States has been bombing Jabhat al-Nusra,
 al-Qaeda’s local affiliate, alongside ISIS. But members of the US-led
 coalition against ISIS, including Turkey and Saudi Arabia, are actively 
supporting al-Nusra with arms and money. In Yemen, the US has pursued a
 years-long drone campaign against al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), a campaign that has included, most recently, the reported killing on Friday of AQAP leader Nasir al-Wuhayshi. But 
much of the Arab world is now essentially siding with AQAP in a Saudi-led war
 against Houthi rebels in that country.

…two quite separate super-wars are 
now being fought.

 The first war is being fought by the US and its Western allies, who are seeking to defeat Jabhat al-Nusra in Syria and AQAP 
in Yemen alongside the campaign against ISIS.

The second war, by contrast, is being fought by Turkey and the regional Arab
 states—primarily Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, and Egypt—against Assad and other Iranian-backed forces in the region, as well as ISIS. In this war the Arab states openly avoid bombing or attacking 
al-Nusra and AQAP, and in fact now provide both with financial support and weapons.

The West must recognize that the ground is shifting quickly across the region 
and the Arab Spring is now on the verge of turning into an Islamic 
fundamentalist winter, whether we like it or not. The US has paid a bitter price 
for declining to back the Arab states in removing Assad four years ago when there was a viable moderate opposition. In the
 months ahead, we should not be surprised if formal talks between al-Qaeda and
 these Arab states begin. The only one not at the table could be the
 United States. 

I think Ahmed Rashid is wrong, and I think his statement that we should have removed Assad four years ago is a clear sign of just how wrong he is. And if Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Turkey want to focus on killing Shia and supporting terrorists, the United States should make it clear that we will not “sup with the devil,” as Rashid accurately calls such a strategy.

Still, I wish everyone in Congress would read the article, just so they’d stop saying such idiotic things.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

In the Name of Love, Take Down that Flag!

Posted by Charles II on June 27, 2015

Daniel Kreps, Rolling Stone:

On Saturday morning, [Bree Newsome] scaled the flagpole outside the South Carolina State Capitol in Columbia and took down the Confederate flag herself.

As Newsome made her way down the flagpole quoting scripture (“The Lord is my light and my salvation. Who shall I fear?”), authorities gathered and arrested the activist and a male dressed as a construction worker who assisted her. Both were charged with defacing a monument, CNN reports. An hour later, the Confederate flag was once again atop the State Capitol’s flagpole…

Listen to her. She told the police, “You come against me with hatred and oppression and violence. I come against you in the name of God. This flag comes down today!”

The crowd chants, “Let us love and protect each other. We have nothing to lose but our chains.”

Bree Newsome interview, which starts about 30 minutes in.

Bree Newsome Twitter feed

Bree Newsome Website

Bree Newsome bail fund.

Links to Daily Kos diaries, from which some links were obtained: NancyK and DEMonRat Ankle Biter

Posted in racism | Tagged: | 2 Comments »

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