Terrorism is a means to an end: that of coercive publicity. It will happen. It will happen especially where we polarise confrontations of race and religion round the world. It will happen when weak people cannot resort to armies or bombs or drones, to gain leverage in enforcing their ideas of how society should be run. There is no such thing as a terrorist state. There are just people who use terror as a means to an end.The only power that can be deployed against this curse is the power of perspective. It is to treat terror as a criminal means of making a point. This has not changed since Joseph Conrad described the terrorist as “terrible in the simplicity of calling madness and despair to the regeneration of the world … like a pest in the street full of men”. What cannot be prevented is best accommodated. It is the psychological price we pay to live in an open and liberal society.These dangers pale against those our grandparents and their forebears had to manage. We are incomparably safer than humanity has ever been before. A community that can devote so much attention to suppressing contentious gatherings, offensive remarks and “invalidations of my identity” is not a society under existential threat. As for how best to help the traumatised people of New York, the answer is to do the opposite of what Americans did to European cities hit by such killings, which was to boycott them. The answer is to book a New York holiday, now.
There is a solution here, and not only on the issue of Al-Aqsa and the metal detectors, which if reached with the Waqf and Jordanian authorities could calm things down very quickly. But that is only the beginning.The Israeli Right continues to make the argument that the occupation is something we can live with. (A situation in which two peoples share this land but one of them is superior and enjoys sovereignty and full civil and human rights, and the other is eternally subjugated and without full rights.) That is not a possibility.We cannot keep nearly two million people in Gaza under siege without water, electricity, or a functioning health system. We cannot keep more than two million people in the West Bank locked behind concrete walls and hi-tech fences while Israel continues to control every aspect of their daily lives — arresting elected officials and activists, deciding who can leave the country, which goods can be imported and exported, who can travel to work or to the hospital within the West Bank, which plots of land can be seized for settlement construction, and more.We cannot continue to insist on a united Jerusalem, which is actually divided between Jewish “citizens” and Palestinian “residents” (a status that can be revoked at any time), between those for whom authorities build homes and invest in education and infrastructure and social services, and those sentenced to poverty. We cannot allow a future in which discrimination between Jews and Arabs is an unquestioned characteristic of our country.None of that is sustainable. Or, to be more precise, we can’t expect a pastoral, quiet and peaceful future while those oppressive and discriminatory systems remain in place. We learn that painful lesson again and again, and yet — we refuse to learn it at all. There is another way. We can instead end the occupation and walk down a path of peace and full equality. Without that, our lives will be filled with the endless repetition akin to the terrifying reality of the past few days. Any discussion of the events of the past week that doesn’t address the broader context is disconnected from reality.
The audience, made up of national leaders, defence and foreign ministers and other senior government figures, who would normally, out of politeness, offer up a warm welcome for a senior US politician, greeted some of his comments with sparse applause.Pence, reiterating that the US remained committed to Nato, attempted to soothe concerns that Trump might deal directly with Putin, bypassing western Europe. The audience welcomed his promise that Russia will be held “accountable” for its actions in Ukraine, although he didn’t spell out how.But he lost them when he went further than US defence secretary James Mattis at Nato headquarters last week in rebuking Nato members such as Germany, France and Italy for failing to pay a fair share of its financial burden.Echoing Trump’s threat last year that he would not necessarily be bound by Nato’s article five, which commits every member to come to the aid of any that comes under attack, Pence reiterated the president’s warning that military help might depend on how much a country under attack had contributed to Nato.
As President Trump signs executive orders on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, suspending refugee admissions for 120 days, indefinitely blocking all Syrian refugees, blocking entry to the US from seven countries, and limiting the amount of refugees, the White House statement from earlier in the day rings hollow. The statement reads, “it is impossible to fully fathom the depravity and horror” of the Nazi regime and we know that the depravity and horror of war is still alive in Syria and other war-torn countries that carefully vetted refugees are escaping from. As an organization that cares about the most vulnerable in our society and believes in promoting nonviolent, peaceful resolutions to conflicts, we at the Intercommunity Justice and Peace Center oppose any plan to reduce refugee admissions, especially a plan that explicitly targets and excludes Muslims from being resettled in the United States. We advocate strongly against policy changes that deny refugees access based on their religion or country of origin.As people of faith, we must welcome the stranger, welcome people who are suffering, and provide for those who are fleeing war, terror, and persecution. This is central to the message of the Gospel and a core Christian belief. Promoting racist and xenophobic messages, by equating all members of one religion to a radical sect, is dangerous and misguided.IJPC is proud to work in solidarity, peace, and justice alongside CAIR and with the Muslim community. We stand in resistance to President Trump’s executive orders and divisive rhetoric against refugees and their allies.Please call your Member of Congress and share your concerns with them. Tell them that we believe refugees and Muslims are welcome in our community.
Buffy Sainte Marie’s ”I’m Going Home” Lyrics
Heaven isn’t so far away as people say
I got a home high in my heart
Heaven is right where I come from; I never throw it away
I know the place and I’m going home
I’m going home
I’m going home
See up there, it’s not the same
They know your name
And I’m not ashamed to need it
I’m going home
I’m going home
I’m going home
You keep on knocking but I’m not coming out of this state I’m in
I’m travellin’ right, I’m gonna get there soon
I’m standing up praying, I’m singing
Saying Heyo ha ha heyo ha hey ya
I know the way and I’m going home.
I’m going home
I’m going home
That’s where the heart can rest
The best is there
And only a fool would leave it. I’m going home
I’m going homeI’m going home
I’m going home
I been around, I been to town
Hey, where you think I learned right from wrong
And I’m going home
I’m going home
Netanyahu is defending his measures as “a wise, aggressive and responsible reaction, a natural response that makes it clear to the nations of the world that what took place at the UN is unacceptable to us.”But his reaction is causing disquiet even among hardline supporters of Israel’s anti-Palestinian policies. Dov Weisglass, a former senior advisor to the late Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is notorious for saying a decade ago that Israel would restrict food to Gaza “to put the Palestinians on a diet, but not to make them die of hunger. ”Now Weisglass is calling Netanyahu’s reaction to the UN resolution “ridiculous.”“The attempt to create symmetry between us and the rest of the world and to punish the 14 countries that voted against us is actually making the Palestinian dream of isolating Israel internationally into reality,” Weisglass said.Tzipi Hotovely, Israel’s deputy foreign minister, also expressed misgivings. She argued that rather than canceling diplomatic visits, Israel would be better off trying to explain its position to the world.“We need to get rid of this false term, the phrase ‘occupied territory.’ This is Israel’s territory — the Land of Israel,” Hotovely said in reference to the West Bank. Hotovely may not have noticed that Israel has been trying to do that for decades, with elaborate marketing and propaganda schemes. The vote in the UN showed that all Israel’s efforts to convince the world that it has the right to steal as much Palestinian land as it pleases have come to nought.Experience shows, however, that it is Palestinians who will feel the real brunt of Israel’s revenge: Israel is already vowing to build thousands more settler homes on Palestinian land in direct defiance of international law.The question is whether world governments, having provoked Israel’s rage, will have the courage at last to hold it accountable.
Estonians eye Russia’s annexation of Crimea and United States President-elect Donald Trump’s comments about reining in NATO spending, which provided a bulwark against Russian expansion during and after the Cold War.Now thousands of Estonians, many without previous military experience, have flocked towards the EDL for specialised conflict training.They learn to fire weapons, recognise Russian armoured vehicles, and live in the country’s vast forests.Some of the more experienced recruits are given instructions on how to make roadside bombs. Others learn how to run a field kitchen capable of feeding thousands of people.The EDL chief, Commander Meelis Kiili, puts it simply — “if you want peace prepare for war”.
The event is organized by Union del Barrio Los Angeles, the L.A. chapter of the Latin-American political group that also has hubs out in San Diego, Oxnard, and the Bay Area. According to the event’s Facebook page, the demonstration will start at 10 a.m. in MacArthur Park, where participants will meet and go on a march that will end by the Edward Roybal Federal Building downtown.According to Ron Gochez, an organizer with Union del Barrio, planners expect about 10,000 people to show up. “You look at the previous protests, and you see that several thousands of people showed up, even though that wasn’t entirely organized,” said Gochez. “It was a spontaneous thing and thousands still showed up.”
Protecting Lithuania from Russia is to be Germany’s responsibility, according to the new NATO defense plans that emerged at this week’s summit in Brussels. The German Defense Ministry showed on Wednesday evening just how seriously it is taking this task, confirming to the DPA news agency that next year it will be sending Leopard 2 tanks to the Baltic country’s Russian border in addition to the 650 soldiers it had already promised – though it would not clarify how many.The move is part of NATO’s wider plan to protect its Baltic members, who have all shown concern about Russian ambitions following the annexation of Crimea in 2014 and the subsequent war in eastern Ukraine.A NATO battalion of around 1,000 soldiers will be stationed in Lithuania as of June next year, and will then be rotated every six months. Around 450 to 650 of these troops are to be supplied by the Bundeswehr, while the others will come from France, Belgium and Croatia. German media reported that the combat-trained unit will also be equipped with tanks, armored vehicles, snipers, and engineers.