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Posts Tagged ‘Egypt

The Awakening – As Defined by Mildred Aristide

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[UPDATE Below: Article by Juan Cole]

One of the best definitions I’ve heard to date was expressed by Mildred Aristide in her interview with Amy Goodman March 22, 2011. You can hear the complete interview on Democracy Now website. Of interest was how Haiti was comparing to what was sweeping across North Africa and how that related to the Haitian people’s struggle for legitimacy as a free people. Here is what she said:

AMY GOODMAN: So, two U.S-backed coups, 1991 and 2004, and now the U.S.—well, President Obama calling President Zuma to say, “Do not fly the Aristides home to Haiti.”

MILDRED ARISTIDE: I think—again, I think it’s—it’s an inability, maybe, by the American political process to understand the kind of relation that Titide has with the Haitian people, and it doesn’t fit within the kind of policy frameworks that perhaps they have of—and so, it’s an unwillingness to see beyond that. I’ll attribute it to that. And, you know, in the meanwhile—

AMY GOODMAN: Explain a little more what you mean.

MILDRED ARISTIDE: Well, I think that—I think that the United States and a lot of those western European countries see politics a certain way, and I think that they have no right to impose that on other peoples. And, you know, if I’m rattling, I’ll rattle, I’ll continue.

But I attended, just the week before we left South Africa, at UNISA—there is a very, very important African lawyer, economist and really a profound thinker from Uganda, Professor Dani Nabudere. And he—and I had met him when I first came to South Africa, and he spoke at UNISA just the week before we left. And he was talking about what was happening now in Egypt and what happened in Tunisia and talking about the people’s revolutions, he said. And one of things that he said, and it really struck me, and I wrote a note in my notebook, he said that, for him, in his perception, is that the people—and I think it was in response to a question. They were saying, you know, “What’s the next step in terms of organizing this resistance that has been happening in Tunisia and in Egypt, for example?” And he said, for him, what was evolving—and he described it as an evolution in what the people are demanding and are requesting of the state—it’s beyond “We want a democratically elected government.” It’s beyond “We want a transparent government. We want elections every four years.” It’s a demand for a new kind of relationship with the state, a human relationship with the state. And it’s a humification—and I think he even used that—or rendering the state as a human being and saying, “We want a state that understands us, that feels us, that has a heart.” And he used terms that one would use between two people. And he said, “That’s what the people are demanding.” So it goes beyond electoral democracy. It goes beyond notions of transparency, which are on paper. And that’s what the people are demanding. [Emphasis added]

And I thought—I said, “You know, that’s what Haitians have been asserting for a long time. It’s a changed notion of state.” And so, I think that that’s one of the elements that led to, you know, the repeated elections of Lavalas. So, it’s not—and that falls outside the rubric or the framework of what the U.S. sees as what is electoral democracy and what qualifies as electoral democracy. So I found a lot of resonance in his explanation of this new kind of human relationship with the state.

And I would—and taking that further, and what Haitians have been saying, especially since the earthquake, in terms of what—you know, this tragic situation that they face and what they were demanding—and I think acknowledging that, you know, the rebuilding—or the building, I should say—could not happen, will not happen, in, as we’ve seen, six months or a year, but it’s a sense of seeing across from you a human face that is understanding, that has a heart, that is empathetic in the most profound sense with what is being experienced, notwithstanding an inability to provide immediate services. And I think that that’s—we’re approaching our destination. And I think that that’s something that Titide has always offered in all of the roles that he’s played—as a priest, as an educator, when he was president, and now as he will return to education and continue to be a person that always [inaudible].

A “new notion of state.” The old notion has nearly destroyed this earth and seriously put in jeopardy the human race. The young people are stepping up and asserting their right to claim life and to inherit this earth. Will the Universe respect their claim?

[UPDATE :: Wednesday, March 23, 2011]

Informed Comment by Juan Cole also speaks about this “Awakening.”  Its the Popular Sovereignty, Stupid. He looks at this phenomena from a more American perspective – probably what this country is trying to impose on these people while their movement is still young and immature. Problem is, the older generation and those that support them are not going away peacefully. Just look at Egypt. Voting, modified Constitution, same kind of American-style Democracy retaining the Old Guard and their corrupt policies. A worthy read.

–Joe

[Source]

Lies and Hypocrisy Goes Hand in Hand with Elitist Liars and Hypocrites

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What is becoming an epidemic is the rank, shameless dishonesty of America’s elected representatives. The question this raises is, does this say something about these representatives, including President Barack Obama or the American people?

Locally, our great blog prognosticator and absolute authority on all matters political and religious, Eric Kirk has also tried to redefine his position towards the Egyptian people demonstrating for their freedom, their personal dignity and that each one of them counts as much as Mubarak and all of his Elitist supporters. Which, incidentally coincides almost word for word with President Obama’s position – security and stability preempt or comes before personal dignity and freedom. Read his postings and backup commentary nearly 3 weeks ago and compare that with his latest posting. Here’s a good ‘start’ example – continue reading his comments. I also posted an article on my other Report blog: The Kirk Accord — Democracy Hypocrisy.

Then there is this latest obscenity:  WikiLeaks row intensifies as US makes ‘privacy’ move against Twitter

Civil rights lawyers fight order to reveal Twitter accounts linked to WikiLeaks – on the same day Hillary Clinton praises role of social networks in promoting freedom.

The US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, praised the role of social networks such as Twitter in promoting freedom – at the same time as the US government was in court seeking to invade the privacy of Twitter users.

Then there’s President Obama’s latest fantasy: Obama Suggests Mubarak Regime Didn’t “Shoot, Beat, Arrest” Protesters.

On Tuesday, President Obama addressed the protests in Iran and across the Middle East at a news conference in Washington. Comparing the Iranian government’s crackdown on protesters with Egypt’s, Obama appeared to suggest the U.S.-backed Mubarak regime didn’t also try to violently repress the recent uprising.

President Obama: “What has been true in Egypt should be true in Iran, which is, is that people should be able to express their opinions and their grievances and seek a more responsive government. What’s been different is the Iranian government’s response, which is to shoot people and beat people and arrest people. And my hope and expectation is, is that we’re going to continue to see the people of Iran have the courage to be able to express their yearning for greater freedoms and a more representative government.”

Obama also defended his administration’s handling of the Egyptian uprising, claiming he wanted to avoid the appearance of meddling in pushing for a transition. But Obama refused to acknowledge that two top officials—Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and special envoy Frank Wisner—voiced support for Mubarak’s regime.

President Obama: “What we didn’t do was pretend that we could dictate the outcome in Egypt, because we can’t, so we were very mindful that it was important for this to remain an Egyptian event, that the United States did not become the issue, but that we sent out a very clear message that we believed in an orderly transition, a meaningful transition, and a transition that needed to happen not later, but sooner, and we were consistent on that message throughout.”

Source

–Joe

Life Imitates Art – Not so funny now!

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Friday, February 11, 2011

Life Imitates Art

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I drew this about two weeks ago, and thought it quite funny. Less funny now that it’s what actually happened….

MacLeod Cartoons

–Joe

Written by Joe Blow

February 12, 2011 at 7:59 pm

Talk Peace – Make War

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[Update Below]

Governments continue to alienate their people while they merrily go about their dark, covert dirty business of lying, deceiving, making deliberate false accusations to obfuscate their acts of war.

The Israeli newspaper Haaretz reports today: Report: “U.S., Israeli warships cross Suez Canal toward Red Sea” – “Egypt opposition angered at government for allowing the fleet of more than 12 ships to cross Egyptian manned waterway, Al-Quds Al-Arabi (an independent pan-Arab daily newspaper published in London since 1989) reports.”

According to the report, thousands of Egyptian soldiers were deployed along the Suez Canal guarding the ships’ passage, which included a U.S. aircraft carrier.

Egyptian opposition members have criticized the government for cooperating with the U.S. and Israeli forces and allowing the ships’ passage through Egyptian territorial waters.

According to eyewitnesses, the U.S. battleships were the largest to have crossed the Canal in many years, Al-Quds reported.

As the US and Israel move to further threaten Iran, US Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Thursday that US intelligence has learned that Iran has the capability to attack Europe with hundreds of missiles.The Jerusalem Post reports today that: Iran: “Our missiles are for defense

 Official:US claims we can rain missiles down on Europe “deception.”

The Jerusalem Post also reports today: Iran: Sanctions reflect double standard” —“Teheran calls for investigation of Israeli nukes.”

 So, what does the future hold for these might empires? How about a lesson from the past? The following commentary by someone that’s worked a lifetime in peace and conflict resolution spoke about the future of America in this world starting in Afghanistan:

 I think it will end, by and large, the same way as Vietnam. That means United States becoming irrelevant.  ****

 And to quote one important exchange of words in that remark, one of the last commanders in Vietnam on the American side said to the top person in North Vietnam, “You were never able to beat us in any open battle.” And the North Vietnamese response was “Correct, but it is irrelevant.” You can be a superpower as much as you want. You’re up against a force, incidentally, which has enormous amounts of world support. That simply is superior.

 It’s called the “silent treatment.”

[UPDATE :: Tuesday, June 22, 2010]

The warmongers just keep pushing and pushing. Our beneficent and benevolent government representatives take the lead as they enforce the corrupt ruling elite’s longterm objectives. Here’s the update: Congress unveils hard-hitting Iran sanctions bill.

–Joe 

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