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Archive for December, 2019

We the People, We the Humanity are Victims of Political Insanity!

 

 

We the People, We the Humanity are Victims of Political Insanity!

 Mahboob A. Khawaja, PhD.

 

 

“We have let the government’s evil-doing, its abuses, power grabs, brutality, meanness, inhumanity, immorality, greed, corruption, debauchery and tyranny go on for too long. We are approaching a reckoning. This is the point, as the poet W. B. Yeats warned, when things fall apart and anarchy is loosed upon the world.”  John W. Whitehead “Monsters with Human Faces: The Tyranny of the Police State Disguised as Law-and-Order.” Information Clearing House: 7/25/2019

 

Democracy of Inhumanity and We, the People of Global Consciousness

 

In a synoptic view, global leaders professing to be wise and smart for being elected, turned out to be naïve, unthinkable and egotistically foolish. Once elected under the so called democracy, they focus their minds on how to get reelected and how to continue a tragic normality of abnormality against the masses that elected them. Agreeably, in the 21st century knowledge-based political affairs require true and effective leadership having a comprehensive sense of human rights, dignity, kindness towards fellow human beings and versatile understanding of navigational change when facts of political life warrant a change. Most contemporary leaders of the world appear to rejoice self-centered evil-mongering, not wisdom and truth of people-oriented political systems of governance. Ideas and ideals that defy reasoning and truth are gushingly operative in aerial bombing of the innocents in Syria, killings of protesters in Iraq, India, Egypt, Chile, Venezuela, Bolivia, Kashmir, Yemen, Libya and not to mention of the large scale civilian displacements of refugees sheltered in Western European nations, Turkey and Lebanon out of bloodbath in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and forcibly evicted Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar (Burma).

 

The end picture of the 2019 is not peace, harmony and global unity on these critical issues. These trends represent sadistic tendencies in democratic norms and system of politics without any accountability and remedial action. Fear of the masses and hatred appears to be ingrained in the mental microscope of many political leaders. All authoritarian political leaders lack the imagination of moral and intellectual traits that should have been at the core of effective leadership. Be it the UNO-the chief organ of global peace and security or the US, Russia and other EU nations, the sense of reality is missing in policies and practices. Millions and millions are bombed, charcoaled by chemical attacks, civilian unprotected by the Geneva Conventions, and the noble intents of the UN Charter, The US Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights- all sound like insult to the “Common Sense” and to human intellect and political observations. When phony leaders fail to live up to the standards of morality and civilizations, they sink into vindictiveness of insanity, irrational behaviors and create political chaos and problems to keep the masses occupied in naive politics. Jesus is quoted in the Bible saying: “ If the world hates you, you know it hated me before it hated you…if they persecuted me, they will also persecute you…” How do We, the People of Human Conscience make these ugly and disingenuous politicians to learn from the history and change the course of events into peace and harmony with the masses all over the globe?

 

 Is the UNO Meant to Protect the Mankind from the “scourge of wars?

 

Despite the UNO and the global institutions of peace and security, We the People, We, the Humanity are strangulated by the well planned warfare against our existence and survival on this planet.  The perversion goes on unchallenged for long in Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Kashmir. To discard the indifference and insanity of the global leadership toward human protection and survivability, all concerned global citizens must think to avert the ultimate impending cataclysmic destruction of the mankind and the Planet Earth.  In all wars, mankind is the net victim of cruel acts of few warmongers. The news media plays pivotal role in manufacturing and transforming unspoken myths into thinkable notions in situations of unusual emergencies and societal conflicts.  Despite knowledge and advanced intelligence networks, the industrialized nations fail to find workable protective measures from societal upheavals and extremism.  Everywhere mankind is victimized by the unknown consequences of the few sadistic egoistic leaders, be it in Syria, Iraq, Bolivia, Kashmir, Chile, Palestine, India, Venezuela, Egypt and elsewhere.

 

Did the UNO or the international community realize the immediacy of the critical humanitarian crisis and daily bloodbath going-on in Syria, Iraq, South America, Yemen and elsewhere?  Was that reality transformed into a living consciousness transcending momentarily the self-actualization for the collective goodness of the global humanity?

 

 

Living with fear and hatred drains out all the rational human thinking for life and whatever values and concepts it claims for human rights, civility and future. The long shadows of deaths and destruction of the human habitats daily converge on the tv screen showing several thousand displaced refugees moving from nowhere to nowhere. The UNO, its Security Council and the global humanity (if there is such a living entity) were supposed to prevent the forcible massacre of the innocent civilians and extend some sense of concerned humanity to the victims. Not, so, it is a routine of aerial bombardments, deaths and displacement of people. Are We, the People, We the Humanity that ignorant, that blindfolded not to realize what is happening in our surrounding?  Was it not the same historic reality that led to the Two World Wars by the few against many?

 

 

Ignorance and Arrogance is Destroying the Mankind

 

We, the mankind live on One Planet, whether you believe it or not, We are One Humanity. Looking critically at the 21st century global geo-political affairs, it appears as if man and humanity and all the working notions of thinking and actions are at crossroads in search of peace, harmony, security and sustainable future. To imagine a common mathematical orderly manifestation, it is incumbent to have sustainable co-existence and harmonious collaboration between all the converging factors to emulate the end purpose for the good of all mankind.

 

 

Today, President Trump announced to set-up a “Space Force” – a galactic force to ensure the American security in space. Have these leaders solved any humanitarian problems on Earth? What rational criterion is implied to move the fear and hatred from the Earth to the Space?   From Planet Earth to the outer Space, people are wired with unknown secretive and sophisticated weapons – the ticking time bombs of scientists and space experts.  Man and ignorance continue to intervene and change the Nature of THINGS operative within the living Universe – why is it that Man cannot co-exist with Man on Earth – the Living Earth?

 

The UNO and the World Order –  the Lost Reality of Mankind

 

Since its inception, the UNO is viewed by the global humanity as an institution to “protect the mankind from the scourge of war” by evolving and implementing a systematic approach to crisis analysis, conflict prevention and to ensure the security of the global governance and peaceful future for the humanity. Its major organ –The Security Council is seen as body of systematic mechanism to deal with global issues of peace, security and prevention of war while facilitating the necessary framework through diplomacy, laws, procedures and directives based on the UNO Charter. Often the members of the Council fail to define their own role and responsibilities toward the global humanity. Most often, they disagree with their own perceptions, statements and values during the deliberations.

 

 

The survival of the deprived humanity, the United Nations, international peace and harmony are everybody’s concern and priorities. Throughout the world, the educated and responsible intellectuals must address the question: how to develop a New Global Institution of functional relevance and credibility?  As members of One Global Humanity, we must think how to construct a New World Organization accountable to the humanity, and not to the nation states?  How could the UN be freed from the clutches of the so-called superpowers? How voices of reason and honesty be heard at the forums of the international organization? How the 21st century’s challenges be met with innovation, responsible and timely governance and concrete responses to crises across the globe? How human rights, human dignity, peace and security be assured to the concerned mankind? How the mankind – the global community must be represented in all of the participatory deliberations of the new global institutions?

 

 

Could We, the People and We the Humanity be optimistic for the coming of 2020?

Unless the elite and corrupt systems of so called democracy change, there is no hope of any formidable political change for the next year. Learning from the unpleasant facts and making changes in perceptions, policies and strategic direction is a rational choice to intelligent leadership. We do need men of new ideas and creative strategies to safeguard the future of mankind from ignorance and arrogance of fellow men. One could propose a workable diagnose to the bewildered global leadership’s mindset if the leaders could be sent on a space voyage to see the Planet Earth as is from the above and try to understand its operational existence – who is governing the universe – what Majestic Power facilitates all that is essential for life and growth;  how the earth rotates against the sun, how the water, seas, mountains stand in obedience to their Creator – the Lord of the World- the Creator of life and death; how the universe and human species are connected together and the imperatives of living in co-existence with the rest of mankind. Perhaps, such an exploratory visit to space will help to melt down some of their inborn arrogance, indifference and cruelty to the fellow human beings. The outcome could produce human optimism and pave the conducive opportunities and means for peacemaking and co-existence. Indeed, leadership adaptability to change in democracy is a mark of intelligence and responsibility.

 

 

Dr. Mahboob A. Khawaja specializes in international relations-global security, peace and conflict resolution with keen interests in Islamic-Western comparative cultures and civilizations, and author of several publications including: Global Peace, Security and Conflict Resolution: Approaches to Understand the Current Issues and Future-Making, 2017. His next publication is soon to be released: One Humanity and the Remaking of Global Peace, Security and Conflict Resolution, 2019.

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China’s New Aircraft Carrier Enters Service at South China Sea Base

 

Meet Shandong, China’s Second Aircraft Carrier

The big ship is also the first carrier and largest warship ever built in China.

China's First Domestically-built Aircraft Carrier Begins Its Ninth Sea Trial

VCGGETTY IMAGES
  • The carrier is named Shandong, after a province of China.
  • Shandong is the first aircraft carrier entirely constructed in China.
  • The new carrier is more capable than the country’s first carrier, carrying 50 percent more fighter planes, though still inferior to a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier.

After months of trials, this week China inducted its second aircraft carrier into the Chinese Navy. The carrier, named Shandong, is the first aircraft carrier built entirely in China and the largest warship ever built in the country. Shandong and her sister ship, Liaoning, will likely be joined by two to four more ships, forming a powerful counterweight to U.S. naval power in the Pacific.

First clear images of the Type 002 carrier’s commissioning into PLAN service as the number ’17’ and named as “Shandong”.

(Images via CCTV-1)

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Shandong was commissioned at the Yulin Naval Base, on China’s Hainan Island. China military watchers had been waiting for weeks for the commissioning ceremony. A tipoff that the commissioning was imminent came in the form of a ASB-B track for People’s Liberation Army Air Force 747-8I VIP transport, a sort of Chinese Air Force One. The 747 was headed from Beijing to Hainan Island. Given the momentous nature of the event, it seemed likely that Chinese leader Xi Jinping would attend.

Sure enough, Xi was headed to Hainan to attend the commissioning. According to China’s Global Times:

Xi endorsed a (People’s Liberation Army) flag and naming certificate to the captain and political commissar of the carrier at the ceremony, which was held Tuesday afternoon with about 5,000 people in attendance.

Here’s a news report from Chinese state media:

Beijing began construction of the carrier in November 2013, and the big ship was launched in April 2017. The ship spent a year pierside fitting out and began a series of eight sea trials in May 2018. On its ninth and final sea trial it sortied from Dalian naval shipyard, transited the Taiwan Strait, and stopped at Hainan Island, its future home port.

China’s first carrier, Liaoning, was originally built as an aircraft carrier for the Soviet Union. Left unfinished after the end of the Cold War, it was picked up by Chinese businessmen as a novelty and eventually passed into ownership of the People’s Liberation Army Navy. The PLAN spent several years studying and then upgrading the carrier to modern standards. Liaoning is generally regarded as a training carrier for the PLAN to learn the dangerous work of carrier-based naval aviation, from deck-handling to takeoffs and landings.

China's First Home-built Aircraft Carrier Sets Out For Sea Trial

China’s two aircraft carriers in one shot, August 2018. Liaoning is in drydock, with construction workers staying on the white passenger ship-type vessel parked in the foreground. Shandong is in the background surrounded by tugboats as it prepares for sea trials.

VCGGETTY IMAGES

Shandong is externally similar to Liaoning, with the obvious difference of new phased array radars and slightly different shaping on the island superstructure. Internally, Chinese sources claim, the ship is capable of handling up to 36 fighter jets, 12 more than Liaoning. The twitter account @loongnaval tweeted alleged details of Shandong’s future carrier air wing:

龙龑之@Loongnaval

China Navy Type 002 Aircraft Carrier Standard Configuration:
24 J-15 Fighter
3 J-15D EW Fighter
6 Z-18F ASW Helicopter
4 Z-18Y AEW&C Helicopter
2 Z-18A VIP Transport Helicopter
1 Z-8JH Medical Helicopter
2 Z-9S Rescue Helicopter

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By comparison, a U.S. Navy carrier air wing is equipped with 44 F/A-18E/F Super Hornet strike fighters and five EA-18G Growler electronic attack (EW) fighters. The U.S. Navy carrier also has up to 19 helicopters, though typically a third of those are deployed to the carrier’s escorting cruisers and destroyers.

One aircraft type a Nimitz or Ford-class carrier has and Shandong doesn’t is the E-2D Hawkeye airborne early warning aircraft. A turboprop aircraft with a five person crew and advanced radar system, the E-2D can scan for enemy threats in the air and at sea for hundreds of miles in all directions. Once identified, it can then vector fighter jets or missiles from other ships in the task force to intercept the threat.

E-2Ds also act as flying command and control platforms, coordinating the air wing’s combat missions against aerial or ground targets. The E-2D Hawkeye allows a carrier air wing to operate more missions more efficiently, extending the air battle to a safe distance away from the actual aircraft carrier.

PLA Navy Drill At Sea

A J-15 fighter taking off from Liaoning using the ship’s ski ramp.

VCGGETTY IMAGES

Shandong and Liaoning lack this critical capability. Both carriers use a ski ramp constructed on the bow instead of an aircraft catapult to help boost jet airplanes into the air. Ski ramps limit jet airplanes to light fuel and weapon loads. They also lack the power to get a turboprop airplane into the air, ruling out an aircraft like the E-2D—for now.

China is already constructing a third carrier, known for now as Type 003. The third carrier will be a departure from the first two ships, most notably in using electromagnetic aircraft launching catapults pioneered by the American carrier Gerald R. Ford. In the meantime, the PLAN is reportedly developing an E-2D-type aircraft to take advantage of the catapults and give the future carrier an early warning and command and control capability.

E-2C Hawkeye Landing

E-2C Hawkeye airborne early warning aircraft.

SMITH COLLECTION/GADOGETTY IMAGES

China will eventually build a fleet of three to six aircraft carriers. Typically, a navy must build three aircraft carriers for every one it plans to keep at sea, the logic being that one carrier is deployed, one carrier is working up to or coming off a deployment, and one carrier is in the shipyard receiving maintenance or upgrades.

In a crisis, a three-carrier force can put two ships to sea. A force of six carriers, therefore, would mean two available ships in peacetime and four or more during emergencies.

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Obtaining situation in Afghanistan Asif Haroon Raja

Obtaining situation in Afghanistan

Asif Haroon Raja

The US-NATO-ANSF military operations against the Taliban in Afghanistan have been going on since October 7, 2001 relentlessly and have now reached a stalemate. For all practical purposes, the US had lost the war after it pulled out bulk of 150,000 ISAF troops in December 2014 and allowed its chief foe Taliban to gain initiative and an upper edge in the battlefield. The US is however refusing to accept its defeat and is prolonging its stay.

After abandoning boots on ground strategy and relying on airpower and weak Afghan National Army, the occupation forces are locked up in 8 military bases with limited freedom of action. The 3,52000 strong ANSF have suffered extremely heavy casualties since 2016. On average, their casualty rate has been 5000 per year.

 

The occupiers are in a quandary since they can neither convert their defeat into victory, nor can contain the Taliban offensive, or can pressurize them to ceasefire and sign the peace deal on their terms. They are caught in a quagmire of their own making in which they can neither stay for long, nor can they curtail casualties, or can pullout and exit safely and honorably. They are surviving on the logistic routes provided by Pakistan and are also dependent upon Pakistan for their departure.

 

The songs of human rights, women rights, fruits of democracy have all evaporated in thin air. And so has the bloated arrogance over its invincibility after the US agreed that political solution was the only viable option to restore peace and for that purpose sat across the table to hold talks with so-called terrorists and beseech them to ceasefire.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Taliban having gained initiative and a decisive military edge over the occupiers and collaborators in 2015, are constantly attacking high value targets all over the country and are constantly gaining space. No respite was given during the nine rounds of peace talks. In the last session at Doha, all friction points had been settled and Trump had extended an invitation to the Taliban leadership to sign the peace agreement at Camp David.

The peace process was however, halted after Trump abruptly canceled the meeting scheduled on 11 September, 2019 on a flimsy excuse of death of one US sergeant. The spoilers once again succeeded in derailing peace and letting the orgy of bloodshed to continue. Disruption of peace process didn’t bring any change in aggressiveness of the Taliban and they continued to strike targets and draw blood. Major victims of the firefight between the two rivals are the ordinary civilians whose death rate has increased significantly.

Presidential election was held on 28 September despite disturbed security situation but the results have so far not been announced due to widespread irregularities. Political uncertainty favor the Taliban and disfavors Ashraf Ghani.

In October, Zalmay Khalilzad was once again sent to renew talks and his efforts helped in swap over of prisoners and to lower tensions. In November, one American and one Australian in captivity of Taliban were freed in exchange of three Taliban prisoners including Anas Haqqani detained in Bagram jail. However, the month of November proved costly for Americans; 19 US soldiers died in combat. Trump made an unannounced visit to Bagram airbase on 28 Nov. While addressing the troops he reaffirmed his desire to reduce the US troops by 5-8000. He announced that talks with the Taliban were being resumed.     

Suicide attack on Bagram airbase on 11 Dec was the biggest attack in the 18-year war causing heavy casualties in men and material. It jolted the US administration as well as Pentagon and impelled them to resume peace talks in real earnest. The 10th round has commenced at Doha but ceasefire and direct talks with Kabul remain the sticking in points.

It is yet not clear whether a breakthrough will be achieved. While the Taliban have so far not hinted at agreeing to ceasefire as claimed by Trump, the spoilers are still active to scuttle peace process.  

In case peace deal is signed and the war torn Afghanistan become peaceful, the biggest losers would be India, puppet regime in Kabul, Israel, Pentagon, US security contractors, drug mafia and Afghan warlords, all of them nurturing mercantile interests. India wants to retain its perverse influence in Kabul so as to draw maximum economic benefits from next door Central Asian States, and to pose twin threat to the security of Pakistan. Regime in Kabul knows that without the crutches of USA, it will fall instantly. Pentagon wants arms industry of military industrial complex to garner maximum profits. Others have their own commercial interests. The US also realizes that control over Eurasia would ensure its world domination.   

These vested entities had egged on George Bush and Obama to remain focused on use of force. They had prevented Obama from making a clean break in December 2014 and compelled him to leave behind Resolute Support Group. Same pressure groups pressurized Trump to increase force level and to drop more bombs in 2018 than ever before. Now they are not letting him to withdraw 15000 US troops and want the war to drag on. He is being scared that complete withdrawal would be catastrophic for the US geo-strategic and geo-economics interests in the region.

They are least concerned that Afghan war has become the longest, bloodiest and deadliest in the US history which has surpassed the toll of the two Great Wars. It has cost $ 2 trillion and 2500 fatalities to USA apart from tens of thousands of injuries caused to the US soldiers and the social trauma suffered by the families of the victims.

The US is mindful of the growing influence of Russia, China and Iran in Afghanistan and their closeness with the Taliban, which is detrimental to its geo-strategic and geo-economic ambitions in this region. China’s BRI project has unnerved the sole super power since it has the potential to make China the leading economic power of the world by 2025. That is why, the US has accelerated trade war with China.

The US had occupied Afghanistan with a view to make it a permanent military garrison and by virtue of its strategic location, be able to meddle into the affairs of China, Russia, Iran, denuclearize Pakistan, oversee Middle East and above all gain monopoly over the resource rich Eurasian belt stretching from Central Asia to the Caspian Sea. It also had eyes on opium and minerals like lithium in Afghanistan.

What is most upsetting for USA is that in spite of spending colossal amount and using excessive force, it has not been able to accomplish single objective. Conversely, it has lost its prestige and élan and today it finds itself in lose-lose situation. It has come to this sorry pass because of its insincerity of purpose, evil designs, and wrong selection of allies that have been pursuing their own selfish agenda.

Another reason is weak and visionless military commanders, overestimating theirs and underestimating the capabilities of foes, painting rosy picture and imagining that they are winning the war. Devoid of fundamental understanding of Afghanistan, they didn’t have foggiest idea as to why they were fighting the purposeless longest war and how to keep their under commands motivated. They didn’t learn any lesson from history that Afghanistan has been the traditional graveyard of super powers where it was easy for the victors to barge in but near impossible to extricate safely. The ghost of Vietnam is now stalking and haunting the very being of Americans operating in Afghanistan.

Even after reaching the edge of precipice, the US leaders are still hoping against hope that they will snatch victory out of the jaws of sure defeat. Gen Nicholson stated in November 2017 that the ANSF would expand control over 80% of Afghan territory in next two years. It was a shot in the dark and devoid of emerging ground realities. Contrary to the claims made by senior US officials that progress was being made in Afghanistan, the fact is that the Taliban have control over 56% of the territory and the rest is contested. The government writ is confined to capital cities only, which are also frequently targeted by the Taliban.

The Washington Post of December 9 has spilled the beans. Quoting official documents, it stated that war is unwinnable, and that the American people have constantly been lied to. The Pentagon papers reveal the impressions of US officials that after toppling Taliban regime, killing Osama bin Laden and dismantling Al-Qaeda with the help of Pakistan, the US had no business to stay on and undermine its reputation. All reports initiated from Kabul to Washington presented “All OK”, whereas on ground nothing was OK.  

Failing to defeat the Taliban in the battleground, the US has been trying to weaken the Taliban by dividing them but failed. Having failed on all fronts, the US instead of taking corrective measures, found Pakistan a convenient scapegoat and held it responsible for all its failures. To hide its embarrassment, it derives some satisfaction by whipping Pakistan. The US is now exerting pressure on Islamabad to force the Taliban to ceasefire, hold direct talks with the regime in Kabul, share power with them, and allow the US to retain few military bases. Or else fight and defeat them.

Pakistan has suffered the most in fighting the US imposed war on terror and servilely abiding to its dictates. It has also produced best results against terrorism, but instead of being rewarded, it is accused, insulted and punished for uncommitted sins. India and Afghanistan have been in the forefront to conduct proxy war as well as propaganda war against Pakistan. On account of policy of appeasement pursued by Pakistan, the trio has been successful in selling its narrative to the world that Pakistan is a terror abetting state and a nursery of terrorism. From the time of Gen Musharraf, Pakistan has been receiving invectives and lashes without a whimper thereby encouraging the real offenders to indulge in one-sided defamation campaign unobtrusively.

The US which is the strategic partner of India and the ruling regime in Kabul has thoroughly misused Pakistan to serve its self-seeking interests. Pakistan was taken on board as a tactical partner for the achievement of short-term objectives but was always regarded as a target. Pakistan has been subjected to series of conspiracies, covert and overt operations for over 16 years relentlessly. In collusion with India, Afghanistan, Israel and the West, the US has now stepped up the hybrid war using all possible kinetic and non-kinetic resources to make Pakistan a compliant state. Billions are being spent on proxies, media, NGOs.  

Pakistan’s economy which is reeling under the weight of mountain of debt is being targeted through IMF and FATF in addition to fomenting bedlam. India’s aggressive posturing since February 24th, followed by the August 5 action in Indian Occupied Kashmir, are being reinforced with series of internal disturbances such as PTM movement, Azadi March led by Maulana Fazlur Rehman, controversial decision given by the Chief Justice regarding extension of the Army chief Gen Qamar Bajwa, students agitations demanding restoration of student unions, and now the lawyers-doctors clash at Lahore. These disturbances are designed to deflect the attention of the world from the sin committed by Modi regime in Kashmir and to destabilize the PTI govt.

Modi’s misadventure in occupied Kashmir is proving costly. The spirits of the Kashmiris locked up since 5 August, denied of basic human rights and subjected to worst torture have not dampened. As predicted, the violent clashes in the northeastern states particularly in Assam in reaction to the recently passed controversial citizenship law, and protests in other parts of India in reaction to Modi regime’s fascism against minorities and craze for Hindutva might prove fatal for the unity of India. Likewise, if Trump further delays the departure of US troops from the inferno of Afghanistan, the end result could be catastrophic.    

The writer is retired Brig Gen, war veteran, defence & security analyst, columnist, author of five books, Chairman Thinkers Forum Pakistan, Director Measac research Centre, member think tank PESS. asifharoonraja@gmail.com                           

 

 

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The Decline of Arab World: Leaders Who Could Not Lead

The Decline of Arab World: Leaders Who Could Not Lead

By

Mahboob Khawaja, PhD

 

Editor’s Note
Sitting in the US, perhaps more than any place on the planet, it is easy to feel removed from the ugliness of war. While the US has been almost continuously engaged in warfare for the last 30 or more years, we have largely escaped the massive destruction it brings. The exception being the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, but even that was contained to a few buildings and a few thousand lives – not to minimize the pain of losing those lives. However, this is far different from the flattening of entire cities, the deaths of tens of thousands and the displacement of tens of millions. Yet, the US has an active role in conflicts across the globe, and most particularly in the resource rich Middle East and South and Central Asia.
Arab nations have struggled out from under the heel of European colonization to find themselves to find themselves yoked to the interests of Western nations, and the U.S. in particular. They have the curse of desirable resources, particularly oil, and much of the leadership has been corrupted into structures and practices that benefit themselves and Western interests far more than the people or society itself. Dr. Khawaja speaks to this with passion and from a point of close connection in his efforts to bring a broader peace to the Arab nations and the world.

 

Once the Arabs were leaders in knowledge, creativity, science and human manifestation, progress and future-making – the Islamic civilization lasted for eight hundred years in Al-Andalucía- Spain. But when they replaced Islam – the power and core value of their advancements with petrodollar’s transitory economic prosperity, they chose poorly and fell in disgrace, and lost what was gained over centuries. They relied on Western mythologies of change and materialistic development which resulted in their self-geared anarchy, corruption, military defeats, and disconnected authoritarianism. The Western strategists ran planned scams of economic prosperity to destroy the Arab culture Arab oil and money turning them into redundant beings for the 21st century world. Today, the Arab leaders are so irrational and cruel that they reject all voices of REASON for the necessity of change and human development – a path that brings only more deaths and destruction to their societies. (Mahboob A. Khawaja, “Arab Leaders Count Dead Bodies but Peacemaking is not the Aim.” Uncommon Thought Journal, USA: 2/19/2015).

Destroyed city of Azaz, Syria during civil war

[Photo: The rubble of Azaz, Syria from bombing during the civil war.]

When leaders live in self-perpetuated darkness, they lose their sense of moral and political direction. To be an effective leader in the 21st century knowledge-based and reasoned politics, one must be truthful and should hold the individual and collective consciousness of evil and righteousness, right and wrong, otherwise, professing to be intelligent could easily be transformed into known stupidity.  Most Arab authoritarian leaders are no exception in this analytical principle and viewpoint.  In absolute authoritarianism as the case across the Arab Middle East, the extension of political anarchy and insanity has become a virtue but devotion to truth and political accountability is fast becoming offensive and undesirable. Today, sectarian conflicts have broken down all the features of socio-economic and political normality and devastated the Arab region. But recall the sectarian divides were engineered by the US and Britain in decade long occupation of Iraq to support their military occupation.

 

 

 

It could be most abhorrent and preposterous to imagine that all is going well across the heartland of the Arab world. Most of the contemporary Arab leaders hold military alliances with the US and/or West European nations and are selected by the intelligence network of the US or the West European nations,  and are educated and mentored by such states as the US, Britain, France, Italy, Holland, and others.  They are Arab by birth but think like British and American by practice. How do we break with the junk history and start thinking of a new vision for change, human development and providing opportunities to enlist the young educated and proactive people of the new generations?  This critical issue was often the core of this author’s thoughtful plan for elite teaching and political change while holding academic positions in the Arab world.  But most often, such visions and proactive endeavors were met with powerful cynical resistance and undesirability by the governing elite who were heavily favored and guided by the “NO System” of the foreign Masters.

The Compulsive Reality of Political Change and Future-Making

The oil production and supply to the foreign master was more vital than the societal intellectual and professional development for a sustainable future-making. This was the conspiracy of the rich and affluent sectors of the Arab societies to deny the prospects of a systematic political change through education and institutional building in most of the oil-producing Arab states. Societies and people deny history as a precious learning asset often end-up confronting the future as a tragic abnormality. This is the trend and pattern of the Arab world of the 21tst century unchanged unsustainable kingdoms, emirates and egoistic sadistic prince and princess soon to be replaced by the changing order of time and history. This picture adequately represents Syria, Iraq, Saud Arabia, Libya, Yemen, and Egypt.  Unless thinking hubs (if any still alive and operative across these states), initiate navigational change to reconstruct the societal thinking modes and priorities, the future appears obscure for the Arab societies to survive another decade or so.

At public consciousness, cynicism about the authoritarian rulers is endemic and there is no systematic cure to rethink of any workable solution in overwhelmingly chaotic socio-economic and political affairs. Time and opportunities for political change were deliberately mismanaged and rejected in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, and greater Arabia. It was an unrecoverable loss of and waste of time and conducive opportunities to develop the young generations and build new public institutions for systematic political governance but it is too late now.  Much of the Syrian, Iraqi, Libyan and Yemeni war pictures are a record of daily deaths, planned destruction, bombing of the civilian habitats and unfeeling for the living mankind.

Emerging crises clearly bear the fingerprints of Western policies and practices aimed at incapacitating the Arab intellectual hub. There seems to be no escape from the current volatile political crises when the Arab leaders act as if they had no knowledge of what massive civilian deaths and destruction meant to contemporary rational thinkers. Temptation and compulsion of evil embedded in psychological factors of sectarian rivalries operate in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libya, and Egypt to perpetuate in-house fear, death, and destruction.

 

Envisaging  Societal “Change”  Beyond the Obvious Politics of Insanity

In their slanted vision, the rulers and their foreign Masters were all complicit in lightning up the dark and sadistic faces of the current reality – where people and humanity are not part of any calculation to restore normalcy, peace, and sense of rationality. The US-led bogus war on terrorism has dehumanized the moral and intellectual consciousness of the Arab leaders to just focus on their own survival. Consequently, the Arab leaders are tragically entrapped in a vicious cycle of self-inflicted wars against themselves. The tragic irony of this folly reveals moral and intellectual decadence where once progressive culture and civilization inspired the Western cultures and civilizations for the Renaissance and Industrial Revolution.

We the People of the Thinking Humanity are not the enemy of any American, Russian, European or other societies but we have been coerced through mass media propaganda, conflicting political time zones and national interests of the few warlords to imagine others as our enemies and invest in wasteful exercises of time and history to sell weapons for wars and destroy the living mankind.  You will recall that the same insane egoism brought about the collapse of Germany under Hitler, Italy under Mussolini and when all European dragged each other bodies with cruelty and insanity as bombing and killings were normal human acts to safeguard the national borders and flags.

We the Thinking scholars and people of One Humanity are trying to imagine of bridging the superficial differences in human thoughts and official polices and have the consciousness to enjoin the natural bonds of human unanimity and solidarity amongst all the rational and conscientious people of the globe for better understanding of peace, conflicts and global harmony. In a compass of human thought and solidarity with One Global Mankind living harmoniously on One Planet- Earth, we call for recognition and respect of human life, end to mindless wars raging across the Arab world and a return to reasoned politics and system of public governance. If morality and reason are denied its rightful place in human thinking and behavior, it could be beyond wisdom and humanity to imagine creative and plausible workable solutions to irrational and erroneous conflicts that make no sense to any rational thinkers. Logic seeks truth and the truth is unchanging and remains the same as it is today, before and perceivable tomorrow- if there is anything left useful intact across the belligerent Arab lands.

The solution must come out of new thinking and a new vision for political change, dialogue between the sectarian divides and competent leadership to pursue the stated goals. What if they were organized as morally and intellectually conscientious people?  What if they knew the complex nature of global politics and the freedom to think, act, and communicate with moral strength to the enemies within the Middle Eastern societies? That is if there were proactive and responsible leaders enriched with intellectual vision and moral integrity and were flexible to listening and learning from the other side without agreeing or disagreeing. Even across the advanced Western societies, leaders know their limitations of knowledge and intelligence.  Many, if not all, man-made problems could be resolved peacefully via persuasive communication and without resorting to bloodshed and committing crimes against humanity.

 

 

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Opinion: Pete King Whipped Up Anti-Muslim Bigotry. Why Is Chuck Schumer Celebrating Him?

Opinion: Pete King Whipped Up Anti-Muslim Bigotry. Why Is Chuck Schumer Celebrating Him?

The Long Island Republican will leave a legacy of division and demonization. Schumer is wrong to celebrate it.

Alex Brandon / ASSOCIATED PRESS

Rep. Pete King, then-chair of the House Homeland Security Committee, during one of his 2011 hearings on Islamist extremism in the United States.

It took a quarter of a century, but Rep. Pete King, a Long Island Republican, is finally retiring. King built a durable following among the Fox News coterie thanks in part to his unflinching efforts to demonize Muslims, racial justice activists, critics of torture, and victims of police violence.

King’s legacy of division makes it all the more inexplicable that Sen. Chuck Schumer — a fellow New Yorker who’s well versed in King’s abuses — would spend Monday morning praising King as standing “head and shoulders above everyone else.”

“He’s been principled and never let others push him away from his principles,” Schumer added. Given that King’s principles included slandering almost any community that didn’t look like him, it’s reasonable to ask what the leader of the Senate Democrats was thinking when he decided to celebrate King’s extremism.

Let’s take a look at a few of the “principles” King held so dearly.

To most Americans, King is best known as the representative who saw Muslim threats around every corner. In the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, he became a staunch advocate for expanding the national security and surveillance state into the unaccountable behemoth we know today.

King has urged police to focus on Muslim communities for potential terrorist activity. He whined that there were too many mosques in the country. And he didn’t stop there. In 2011, he led a series of hugely wasteful, McCarthy-esque trials popularly known as the “radicalization hearings.” Those congressional sideshows became fountains of anti-Muslim disinformation, where King made the risible claim that “80% of the mosques in this country are controlled by radical imams.”

The hearings never produced an iota of evidence to support King’s claims.

Henny Ray Abrams / AP

A protester supports Rep. Pete King’s congressional hearings on the role of Muslims in homegrown terrorism in New York, March 2011.

There is nothing praiseworthy in King’s tireless effort to establish himself as the United States’ leading anti-Muslim fearmonger. Schumer should explain what, precisely, he found to admire in any of King’s hatred.

Not content with only marginalizing American Muslims, King has also shown contempt for those protesting police brutality. After a New York police officer killed Eric Garner with a prohibited chokehold in 2014, King took to the media to blame not the officer but Garner’s obesity. His statement was so outrageous that even fellow Republicans criticized it.

And it wasn’t just the Garner case. Just last year, King questioned the patriotism of NFL players who chose to kneel for the national anthem, comparing their kneeling to a Nazi salute. In a tweet criticizing the New York Jets, King claimed systemic police violence was a “false narrative” created by liberal elites to sow racial distrust between communities of color and white Americans.

None of this is new information to Schumer, whose own tenure in politics overlaps every single one of King’s racist and anti-Muslim outbursts. Such divisive, hateful rhetoric runs in opposition to the culture of inclusivity and tolerance that Democrats aim to strengthen.

King’s tenure in Congress was not a noble one. His repeated attempts to strip health care from millions of Americans should not be celebrated as “sticking to principles.” It should be viewed as it is — a nakedly partisan act against the wishes of King’s own voters. Not that you’d know: King’s social media profiles censored criticism of his votes to kill Obamacare.

There is always the possibility Schumer was merely being civil. After all, politicians tend to speak well of their departing colleagues no matter how odious their records. But this is a perfect example of how the veneer of political civility minimizes the true damage caused by extremists like King. It is certainly not a courtesy King ever extended to the communities he terrorized with bogus hearings and incendiary attacks.

It is tragic that a politician whose career focused so completely on sowing distrust and enmity between fellow Americans can still be described as a fairly “moderate” Republican. By enabling King’s antics, Republicans allowed their party to swing to its current extremes. Democrats, and especially Democratic leaders like Schumer, should have no part in legitimizing this Republican march into madness.

The only silver lining of King’s tenure is that a Democrat could win his Long Island seat and begin the long process of repairing the damage King wrought. Schumer can start by apologizing to those communities revictimized by his thoughtless praise of King’s poisonous legacy.


Max Burns is a Democratic strategist, political commentator, and former director of communications for Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights,an international nonprofit organization.

Reference-Courtesy = BUZZFEED

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