A delegation of eight doctors from the Rio Grande Valley (on the Texas border with Mexico) will be going to Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh in November to provide medical care to Rohingya refugees. God bless them.
Can someone explain this editorial thing where journals publish rightwing rubbish & end with a disclaimer “The views expressed in this article reflect solely those of the author & not necessarily the views of the editors”? Al Araby published an ignorant, vicious attack on BDS & the designation of Israel as apartheid by Sam Hamad & ended with such a disclaimer. Like that made it all better? Have they no journalistic integrity or commitments? The American Herald Tribune publishes nothing but Assad propaganda on Syria so doesn’t bother with the disclaimer anymore. It’s gone over to the dark side. When it publishes crap by fascist Gearoid O Colmain supporting the Burmese junta & vilifying the Rohingya, it adds on the disclaimer. Like that makes it all better?
What about journalism having some commitments & what about sticking to them? Rightwingers, fascists, Zionists have plenty of platforms. There is no playing both sides of the street when it comes to war, occupation, genocide. The disclaimers are nothing but a cover for cowardice & compromise.
There’s apparently some confusion about the relationship of Ahmad Hassoun, the hangman & Grand Mufti of Syria, to Israel. Israel is part of the counter-revolution supporting the Assad regime because a popular revolution against dictatorship in a neighboring country is distinctly to the disadvantage of Israeli colonialism & apartheid & would significantly strengthen the Palestinian struggle for self-determination. But playing both sides of the street is an integral part of Zionism since historically Jews were persecuted in Syria & driven out of the country. The last 18 Syrian Jews were evacuated during the siege of Aleppo last year.
The confusion is partly due to anti-Semitic rubbish about Jews running the world through the Israeli lobby, media, banks. Assad propagandists tap in to that crap by claiming Israel’s involvement in Syria is part of a plan to take over a huge section of the country for its “Greater Israel” project–which is a modern version of the fraudulent “Protocols of the Elders of Zion.” It’s been an effective ploy for Assadists to link Israel in that way because it evoked latent & quiescent anti-Semitism among some Palestinian supporters & drew them in to supporting Assad’s dictatorship. It also weakened & discredited a section of Palestinian solidarity, a movement which has worked tirelessly to demarcate the sharp differences between hating on Jews & opposing Zionist colonialism.
Those political forces who want to end the hating & defeat those political forces who feed off it must distinguish between Jews, who have been historically persecuted & subject to pogroms & genocide, & Zionists who want to build a godless but theistic state based on supremacy–a state which is at odds with the welfare of Palestinians as well as Jews, no matter what Zionist propaganda claims.
The Grand Mufti & hangman of Syria is a friend of Israel but an enemy of Jews, Palestinians, Syrians. He is a war criminal & should face prosecution as such.
(Photo is the grand hangman in India where he met with government officials, scientists, & others who all pledged support for the Assad dictatorship.)
One thing made crystal clear by responses to the Rohingya genocide is that internationalism is not just a sentiment but an iron law which governs all our lives. The most reactionary & violent political forces in the world drawn to the Assad dictatorship like flies to horse manure have allied with Russia, China, India, & Israel against the Rohingya people. That puts them in alliance with the 20 countries represented by diplomats who just toured Arakan state & came back to blame ARSA for army ‘clearance operations’ with no mention of the Rohingya or genocide.
That shows how the struggles against war, occupation, persecution, genocide, & for refugee rights from Burma to Kashmir, India, Bangladesh, Europe, the US, Australia, & everywhere else are inextricably linked together. We stand together against these onslaughts because that is the only way to defeat them & because our governments are all involved. We are all Rohingya. We are all Palestinian. We are all Kashmiri. We are all Muslims. We are all human beings.
Ahmad Hassoun, the chief hangman & Grand Mufti of Syria came out on Indian TV in support for the Burmese junta, in support of India’s attempt to deport 40,000 Rohingya refugees who the Modi government associates as terrorists, & suggesting that media coverage of the genocide exaggerates the problem.
Is it possible or likely that a mufti who supports fascism & genocide in Burma, the occupation of Kashmir, & the persecution of Muslims in India would represent some kind of sui generis righteous fascism in Syria? Or that the 13,000 political prisoners in Syria who he signed off for torture & hanging actually deserved it? Only in Assadist LaLaLand is that possible.
On October 2nd, a group of 20 diplomats visited Arakan state at the invitation of the Burmese government. The diplomats were from Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Indonesia, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Serbia, Switzerland, Turkey, the US, the European Union, Germany, Spain, Sweden, the UK, Finland. Just so we’re clear, they did not go there as private citizens but as representatives of their governments.
They issued a public statement that can only be called contemptible, blaming violence in Arakan on ARSA & which does not even mention the Rohingya people, let alone the genocide against them. The statement expresses solidarity with the Burmese military, placing those 20 governments in league with genocide & accomplices to it. No wonder not a one of them has sent even a thimbleful of humanitarian aid to help the 500,000 refugees. Those who are citizens of those countries cannot stand for this criminality but must incorporate demands for asylum & aid to Rohingya into all our political actions.
This photo is a Rohingya man with his 7-year-old son Shoabib who has a bullet wound in his chest from when Burmese soldiers attacked their village. That filthy old thing he’s laying on is a hospital bed in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. The rest of the family members got separated from them as they fled for their lives. Those despicable politicians have deliberately turned their faces from the refugees & victims of genocide to side with the genocidaires of Burma.
We stand with the Rohingya people against genocide & against the monstrous, hateful lies against them. We demand our governments provide immediate & massive emergency aid to the refugees & back that up with asylum with rights to work, education, healthcare, & social services.
This is the shameful statement of the diplomats which will enrage as much as it sickens you:
(Photo by Bernat Armangue/AP)