Archive for December 14, 2006
“”We are not against the U.S.,” [Syrian foreign minister] Moallem said. “To the contrary, we want to be part of a regional dialogue that, in our opinion, serves American interests in the region.””
The sociology of Samir Khalaf: “Most compelling, perhaps, was the speech of Nayla Tueni, Gebran’s daughter. She exuded self-confidence and her presence belied her youthfulness. At barely 23, she now carries the mantle of leadership at An-Nahar.” When you read him–I mean, when you endure him, you really get the impression that he thinks of [...]
“Robert Fisk: Who’s running Lebanon?” (Angry Arab: Abed. Abed (Robert Fisk’s driver) is running Lebanon.) You know where Robert Fisk is going with a story when he begins like this: “Some four years before his murder, when he was still Lebanese Prime Minister, Rafiq Hariri angrily told me a story of his struggle with Hizbollah…” [...]
“Another document in the archives quotes a dispatch from a British ambassador saying the family of Prince Sultan “had a corrupt interest in all contracts”.” (A former senior US military adviser in Saudi Arabia recently told me that Prince Khalid Bin Sultan insisted on a 1% cut on all contracts during the 1991 US war [...]
“Palestinian sources say that Saudi Arabia has promised Abbas funds that will allow him to pay salaries and build his military force. In view of the crisis there are also rumors that the jailed Fatah leader, Marwan Barghouti, will be released as an Israeli gesture to bolster Abbas’ standing, and prevent Hamas from reaping the [...]
Democratic death squads: “Although Shiite militias and death squads are behind much of the sectarian violence, Rice said she believes that most Iraqi Shiites are “firmly” on the side of democracy.”
The new “South Lebanon Army”–in Palestine: “U.S. officials training Palestinian security forces loyal to President Mahmoud Abbas are emphasizing urban anti-terrorist techniques as part of a systematic effort to bolster Abbas and his Fatah loyalists to counter the political success of Hamas, according to Palestinian analysts and officers receiving the training.” (I always believed that [...]
Wake up the children, and release the pigs from the barn. Lisa Beyer of Time magazine who has nothing to offer on the Middle East thinks she stumbled on an insight. She is so proud of herself and her editors can’t be more proud. You see she has found out that, contrary to public opinion, [...]
Nicholas Blanford: Nicholas Hariri. I really believe that Nicholas Blanford, who only supports those Lebanese demonstrators that he finds to be “telegenic”, now writes the talking points of Hariri Inc. In fact, this article is a rehash of the pieces I read weeks ago in Hariri rag, Al-Mustaqbal. And what is his point, really? He [...]
One caller to the TV station of the Lebanese Forces militia, LBC-TV, said today on Kalam An-Nas that “they have turned downtown Beirut into Suq Al-Hamidiyyah.” To him I say: I prefer Suq Al-Hamidiyyah and its people to downtown Beirut and its people ANY DAY.
My friend Sinan points out that Al-Akhbar newspaper (contrary what I wrote yesterday) did publish one article by Pierre Abi Sa`b in which he criticized the “conference” on the holocaust in Iran. I stand corrected but my established record of (caramelized) infallibility remains solid.
My friend Samah: opposition to the opposition but from the standpoint of opposition. (An-Nahar typically sinisterly changed the original title)
Saudi website: “No free elections in Iran.” (Angry Arab: No Elections in Saudi Arabia)
Bush continues to make progress in Iraq: “Offensive operations by Iraqi and coalition forces against terrorists and insurgents and death squad leaders have yielded positive results. In the months of October, November, and the first week of December, we have killed or captured nearly 5,900 of the enemy.“
5% of people in Jordan have a favorable opinion of the US. So Bush is making progress…in Jordan too.
“The Serious Fraud Office has ended its corruption inquiry into a Ã‚Â£6bn fighter planes deal with Saudi Arabia.” (thanks Nick)
Civil-war-criminals-for-Hariri. A notorious gang leader from the Lebanese civil war years (who headed an organization called February 6th), Shakir Al-Birjawi (who was funded by `Arafat at one point–before `Arafat started funding Suha `Arafat) is back in Beirut. Hariri Inc has put him in charge of gang activities in the Tariq Al-Jadidah neighborhood.
Palestinian prime minister, Isma`il Haniyyah, made to wait at Rafah before entering his homeland. Hamas should have known that by (foolishly) agreeing to go through elections–under occupation–and by (foolishly) agreeing to serve in government–under occupation–it gave legitimacy to the process of Oslo. (thanks Ibrahim)
Rafiq Hariri in talks with `Amr Musa. Look at this picture: a portrait of Rafiq Hariri is placed on the chair next to mini-Hariri. The portrait made many good points during the meeting. (thanks Assaad)
Sneaky. Yesterday, I linked to an article in the New York Times about the controversy over Jimmy Carter’s book on Palestine. I noted how the last paragraph of the article made a bizarre mention of the Tehran “conference” on the holocaust–just to discredit Carter and link him to anti-Semites. Today, in the hard copy edition [...]