Sunday, December 11, 2011

Cosa dice l'Islam sul terrorismo?

L'Islam è una religione di misericordia e non consente il terrorismo.

Dio disse nel Corano:
((Dio non vi proibisce di essere buoni e giusti nei confronti di coloro che non vi hanno combattuto per la vostra religione e che non vi hanno scacciato dalle vostre case. Dio ama coloro che si comportano con equità.)) (Corano, 60:8)

Il profeta Mohammed proibiva ai soldati di uccidere donne e bambini e li avvisava:

{Non tradire, non essere eccessivo, non uccidere un neonato.}

Disse anche: {Chiunque abbia ucciso una persona che ha un contratto con i musulmani non profumerà come il Paradiso, sebbene la sua fraganza si sentirà per un periodo di quarant'anni.}

Il profeta Mohammed aveva anche proibito la punizione con il fuoco.

Egli elencograve; l'omicidio come il secondo di tutti i peccati e avvisava anche che nel giorno del giudizio, {I primi casi a essere giudicati tra persone nel giorno del giudizio saranno quelli di spargimento di sangue}.

I musulmani sono anche incoraggiati a essere gentili con gli animali ed è proibito maltrattarli. Una volta il profeta Mohammed disse
{Una donna fu punita perchè imprigionò un gatto finché morì. Per questo motivo, fu condannata all'Inferno. Quando il gatto era imprigionato, essa non gli diede né cibo né acqua e non lo lasciò libero di nutrirsi degli insetti della terra.}

Disse anche che un uomo diede da bere a un cane, così Dio dimenticò i suoi peccati a causa di questa buona azione. Fu chiesto al profeta:

“Messaggero di Dio, saremo ricompensati per la gentilezza verso gli animali?” Egli disse: {Esiste una ricompensa per la gentilezza verso ogni forma di vita, animale o umana.}

In aggiunta, quando i musulmani macellano gli animali è loro imposto di farli spaventare e soffrire il meno possibile. Il profeta Mohammed disse: {Quando macellate un animale, fatelo nel modo migliore. Uno affili il suo coltello per ridurre la sofferenza dell'animale.}

Alla luce di questi e altri testi islamici, l'atto di incitare al terrore nei cuori dei civili senza difese, la distruzione completa di edifici e proprietà, il bombardamento e lo storpiare uomini innocenti, donne e bambini sono atti proibiti e detestabili secondo l'Islam e i musulamni.

I musulmani seguono una religione di pace, misericordia e perdono e la maggior parte non ha nulla a che vedere con i violenti eventi che sono associati ai musulmani.

Se un musulmano commette un atto di terrorismo, questa persona sarà colpevole di violare le leggi dell'Islam.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Norman Finkelstein: Arab dignity will bring peace to the Middle East

This  important and highly recommended statement by Dr. Norman Finkelstein was supposed to be published earlier but I totally forgot about it due to the unusual circumstances we are going through right now in Egypt.
Last May I attended his lecture in the American university of Cairo and that was one of the most informative and important lectures about Israeli/Arab conflict I've ever attended. 

If you are a westerner and interested in getting to know about this conflict from a perspective of a Jewish American who's parents died in the Holocaust you have to know more about this man.

The article as found in his official site.
In a lecture that linked Egypt’s revolution to the balance of power in the region, the renowned American academic Norman Finkelstein painted the clear fear change will induce in Israel
Osman El Sharnoubi, Wednesday 18 May 2011
The American political scientist and author Professor Norman Finkelstein, an outspoken critic of Israel, gave a lecture Monday night to a packed auditorium at the American University in Cairo, a day after he demonstrated with Egyptians in front of the Israeli embassy in Giza on the 63rd anniversary of the Nakba.
Finkelstein, the author of The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the Exploitation of Jewish Suffering, started the lecture by speaking about Israeli aggression towards its neighbours in the last five years, starting from Hezbollah’s victory against Israel.

Finkelstein moved from this defeat to tell a narrative of Israel’s belligerency in reaction to this defeat, using the Israeli invasion of Gaza in 2008, the ensuing blockade and finally the attack on the freedom flotilla, the Mavi Marmara as illustration.
Through such accounts, Finkelstein presented to the audience why he views Israel as a rogue state.
Presenting facts and testimonies, Finkelstein refused to label what happened to Gaza in 2008 as a “war,” insisting that what took place there was a “massacre.” Presenting Israel’s excuse for this massacre as false, for Hamas did not provoke this response from Israel, he moved on to the real reason for the operation against Gaza. Israel, smarting from its humiliating defeat in Lebanon in 2006, wanted to display its military might.

In the same way, the professor undermined the reasons for the Israeli blockade on Gaza, saying that preventing weapons from entering Gaza did not necessitate banning chocolates, potato chips and baby chicks from entering.
He sees the blockade as a form of collective punishment on the Gazans for choosing the wrong leaders in the 2007 elections – Hamas.

pictures from Gaza after IDF attacks in Dec 2008
The final, and most important, part of the lecture covered the Egyptian revolution and its impact on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Posing as a starting point the question of whether or not the revolution would threaten Israeli security, Finkelstein delved into Egypt’s history with Israel since 1952, shortly after the occupation of Palestine, following the free officers’ coup and the revolution that immediately followed.
Finkelstein, again, tried to show that Nasser and other leaders were in fact hoping to avoid a confrontation with Israel, preferring to focus instead on modernising. It was Israel that wanted a war.
Through citing events from 1954 to 1967, the lecture presented the view that an unthreatened Israel carried out the 1967 attack on Egypt in its effort (with the grace of the United States) to destroy “radical Arab nationalism” and eliminate the chances of Egypt becoming a force to reckon with in the future. Instead, with Mubarak in power, it became a country that could “be pushed around.”
From here, the lecture became more inward looking, touching upon issues hotly debated in Egypt since the ousting of Mubarak. Among these is the Camp David peace treaty with Israel.
The treaty, he explained, came about as a consequence of Israel’s desire to remove Egypt from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The concern stemmed from Egypt’s military performance in the 1973 war that temporarily saw Israel pushed back in Sinai.
Sadat unilaterally agreed to peace in return for the Sinai Peninsula, which, according to Finkelstein, “freed Israeli’s military hand” to attack on other fronts. The 1982 invasion of Lebanon and the occupation of Gaza and the West Bank followed.
Finkelstein asserted that under Mubarak, Israel was guaranteed a calm southern front, and it pursued its attempts at cornering Iran with sanctions and mobilising for war against it.
This, the professor stated, is no longer the case. The first thing Israel said after Mubarak was ousted from power is that the attack on Iran is off.
Another consequence of Mubarak’s toppling, believes Finkelstein, is that the popularly rejected Camp David treaty may be renegotiated, although he doubts it will be renounced due to the reciprocal obligations a treaty entails, i.e. Israel left Sinai in exchange for Egypt making peace with it. Israel, Finkelstein said, trembles at the possibility of having to renegotiate with Egypt.
The revolution has brought Israel to face a fear it hasn’t had to contemplate since signing the treaty with Egypt. Israel is “afraid that the dignity of the Arab World, in particular Egypt, will be restored, that’s their problem,” declared Finkelstein. War, on the contrary, fills it with no fear since it has the upper hand militarily.
It was then the turn of Arab leaders to come under Finkelstein’s caustic analysis. Despite knowledge being a crucial asset for leading a country, Arabs – citing Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah – don’t generally read, especially their leaders. “The complete guide to chewing grass” he cited as the only book Mubarak had ever read.
For this reason, Finkelstein explained, the Israelis weren’t afraid of Mubarak, but, in contrast, “they know ElBaradei reads,” to which the audience applauded.
His reference to the Nobel Prize winner and presidential hopeful Mohammad ElBaradei lead to him admitting his preference to see him become president because he “wants to restore the dignity and the pride of Egypt.”
It is precisely the prospect of Arab countries rising as powers and modernising, which destroys Israel’s war option, preventing it from having a free military hand in the region to use under the pretext that Arabs only understand the language of force. This, Finkelstein said, is the greatest threat to Israel.

The nullifying of the military option would create a climate in which the prospects for peace between Israel and Palestine have never been better.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Arabs and Muslims: The bad guys in Hollywood

"Reel Bad Arabs": How Hollywood vilifies a people.

I found this outstanding documentary on July 2010 and was impressed by the effort done and the huge amount of information documented in it. It was originally a book by the same author: Dr. Jack Shaheen that I so much admire and respect.
I thought of sharing this movie earlier but it never happened but now is definitely the best time to share such a masterpiece of work for many reasons. 

First of all to remind Arabs of the way we have always been considered and portrayed in the western media and consequently on the western mentality _and may be still are_ in order to work on changing this by clearing these misconceptions up.
I'm afraid the subconsciousness of us is being fed all the time by nonsense that become facts later on in a gradual process. 

(Advice number 1: Watch out for messages sent to you throughout media. All the time)

Secondly, when the map of the Middle East is being redrawn literally, policies towards the Middle East should be reconsidered again as well. This is the role of the educated open-minded westerners who are willing to co-operate.
Although seeing Americans jumping like crazy and chanting CIA in front of the red house oh, sorry I mean the white house made me think twice before talking about rationality and the definition of triumph I still have faith in the smart minority out there.

(Advice number 2: Power comes from people for people who are the makers of their fate, if they neglected this fact they should blame no-one but themselves.)

I'm not going to write much and will just quote from the official site of the movie that you might find here:


"This groundbreaking documentary dissects a slanderous aspect of cinematic history that has run virtually unchallenged from the earliest days of silent film to today's biggest Hollywood blockbusters. Featuring acclaimed author Dr. Jack Shaheen, the film explores a long line of degrading images of Arabs--from Bedouin bandits and submissive maidens to sinister sheikhs and gun-wielding "terrorists"--along the way offering devastating insights into the origin of these stereotypic images, their development at key points in US history, and why they matter so much today. "

"Shaheen shows how the persistence of these images over time has served to naturalize prejudicial attitudes toward Arabs and Arab culture, in the process reinforcing a narrow view of individual Arabs and the effects of specific US domestic and international policies on their lives.

By inspiring critical thinking about the social, political, and basic human consequences of leaving these Hollywood caricatures unexamined, the film challenges viewers to recognize the urgent need for counter-narratives that do justice to the diversity and humanity of Arab people and the reality and richness of Arab history and culture."

About Dr.Jack Shaheen:

Dr. Jack Shaheen (born 1935) is Professor Emeritus of Mass Communication at Southern Illinois University. He was also a consultant on Middle East affairs for CBS News.

He studies portrayals of Arabs and Islam in American media. Being a committed internationalist and humanist, Dr. Shaheen addresses stereotypical images of racial and ethnic groups. His presentations illustrate that stereotypes do not exist in a vacuum, that hurtful caricatures of Asians, blacks, Latinos and others, impact innocents. He explains why such portraits persist, and provides viable solutions to help shatter misperceptions.

Among Dr. Shaheen's awards recognizing his "outstanding contribution towards a better understanding of our global community" are the University of Pennsylvania's Janet Lee Stevens Award, and the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee's Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition for "his lifelong commitment to bring a better understanding towards peace for all mankind."

Shaheen, a recipient of two Fulbright teaching awards, holds degrees from the Carnegie Institute of Technology, Pennsylvania State University and the University of Missouri. 

He regularly appears on national programs such as Nightline, Good Morning America, 48 Hours, and The Today Show. Also, he has worked with several television series: The Lucy Show, Twelve O'Clock High and The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau.

To watch the full movie on Top Documentary Films:

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Where is Tunisia located?

Question 1 for you:
a. How does the western main stream media decide on exposing international issues? 

b. What are the factors that determine if something is newsworthy, hot or interesting?

For a long time I've been trying really hard to figure out the answer to this question especially that the reactions of the westerners themselves are pretty surprising to me most of the time.

So far, it seems to me that the majority of people are so very misinformed about all Middle Eastern issues.  
This is sad but I'm telling you, educated people of the west, I honestly want to change this and I want your help! 

I remember the way the news about Haiti earthquake, Darfur, and always the Iranian internal issues were focused on in western mainstream media. 

When they pick up and choose I think I should begin to doubt!

Of course I never go to western sources to get information about anything related to The Egyptian or middle eastern related affairs. However, I still need to complain about the extremely dumb stuff I see written about them on popular newspapers or shown on mainstream TV channels. And then also complain about the comments, opinions, and reactions people have in real world.

That was a kind of long introduction, right? I'm sorry but I really had to say this.

Ok then let's see what we have today from my interesting part of the world.

It's Tunisia!

Yes, this little less heard of seemingly peaceful and trouble-free North African country for the majority of us although the truth was far beyond this. 

Even here in Egypt we don't hear much about this country, until only a few weeks ago.

The whole thing started approximately around the 17th of December 2010. In Sidi Bo Zeid city people started to protest and then it spread all over the country only after this university graduate Tunisian guy tried to burn himself alive. 

He failed to get a job with his university degree (That sounds pretty familiar, like my future for example). Anyway, he ended up selling fruits in the street and the government chased him because it is illegal. 

So, the protests got bigger and it turned to be a people revolution on unemployment, high prices, oppression and all, and both the Tunisian police and army clashed with the protesters. It was a big mess some people were killed, some were injured and all schools and universities got closed. These are some of the pictures from there:

Pretty scary, isn't it?!

Up to this point, the western media coverage along with Middle Eastern "allies" were all terribly dumb. 

 Nothing but just a few lines with many "riots" and "riotous" words inserted within the articles "reporting" what happened to the majority of misinformed people over here and there who may still need to know where is Tunisia located! 

Some smart people have noticed the intended weak coverage on the Tunisian Revolution like this one here:

And this one here:

Activist crackdown: Tunisia vs Iran

By: Jillian York who is a writer, blogger, and activist based in Boston. She works at Harvard Law School's Berkman Centre for Internet & Society and is involved with Global Voices Online.

"The mainstream media denounces crackdowns on Iranian bloggers, yet ignores attacks on activists in Tunisia. Now, as Tunisians take to the streets (and to the Internet) to protest unemployment and the oppressive and longstanding Ben Ali regime, the world's attention seems to be elsewhere. More specifically (and perhaps more importantly), the US government--which intervened heavily in Iran, approving circumvention technology for export and famously asking Twitter to halt updates during a critical time period—has not made any public overtures toward Tunisia at this time."

But things changed a little for the western media by the time it turned to be a real revolution.

Of course you can't simply ignore it when the dictator president flee away and escaped with his family! Till the present moment I'm writing this post, he is flying from an airport to another trying to get a place to hide.

For me, the funnies part about all of this is how westerners themselves comment and react online.

Ignorant people who refuse to get educated about what they don't know and don't admit it becoming political and social experts especially on Middle eastern related issues are funny.

One funny thing I keep reading is how many people think that it was the invention of Wikileaks and the Internet that helped the Tunisians.

 You know, these things they are not familiar with in 3rd world countries especially in Africa where they still live either on trees or inside tents.

But forget about this, for a little while I couldn't believe what I was hearing, seeing and reading online or on TV about Tunisia! 

A Revolution_for real_ on an autocratic regime for the very first time in a really long while in the region.

These are Arab people who are doing this.
You hear me, people? Arabs!

They live not too far from here almost up to same pressure, same corruption, and same everything bad  we have and they did it.

Thanks to the Tunisian people I feel so proud today, I feel it's a personal victory and I do wish to live till the time my own people learn that it costs a lot to see a change, to ask for your rights, and get them. 


- Ah! by the way, could anyone please tell me where exactly is this country they keep talking about now?
Is it in Africa or somewhere Asia, maybe?

- Seriously man, why should I give a damn about it?
 I know they did pretty well in Star Wars, anyways. And that was awesome!