Archive for September, 2008

Full text of Ahmadinejad’s speech to the UN General Assembly

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on September 24, 2008 by psysword
 
 
 
Last update – 10:37 24/09/2008
Full text of Ahmadinejad’s speech to the UN General Assembly
By Haaretz Service
Tags: IranU.N.Ahmadinejad 
The following is a copy of Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s speech to the United Nations General Assembly early Wednesday morning, as translated by the Presidency of the Islamic Republic of Iran News Service: 

Mr. President, 
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xcellencies, 

I am grateful to the Almighty for granting me another opportunity to be present in this world Assembly. 

In the last three years, I have talked to you about great hopes in the bright future of human society, and some solutions for achieving sustainable peace and expanding love, compassion, and cooperation. 

I have also talked about unjust systems governing the world; pressures exerted by some powers seeking to trample the rights of other nations, oppression imposed on the majority of the global community, especially on the people of Iraq, Palestine, Lebanon, Africa, Latin America, and Asia; about challenges we are faced with, such as efforts to shatter the sanctity of families, destroy cultures, humiliate lofty values, neglect commitments, expand the shadow of threats, as well as about the arms race and the unfairness and inability of the systems governing world affairs in reforming the status quo. 

With the occurrence of various new developments, the debility of existing mechanisms has been revealed even more. However, at the same time, an encouraging trend, which has originated in the thoughts and beliefs of peoples, has blossomed and become stronger. Posed against the despairs caused by the new developments, this trend has ignited the ray of hope for a brilliant, desirable and beautiful future in the hearts of men. 

Ladies and Gentlemen, 
Dear Colleagues, 

Today I would like to talk to you about the main reasons behind the conditions ruling the world and the means to tackle them. Of course, you are already aware of what I am talking about, but I think it is necessary to remind ourselves. 

It seems that the roots of problems lie in the way one views and perceives the world and humankind, as well as in the important issues of freedom, obeisance to God, and justice. The world, humankind, freedom and obeisance to God, and justice, have been of utmost importance to humans throughout history. 

1. The World: 
God Almighty purposefully created the world. This world is the bedrock for the evolution and growth of a creature called man, and the laws governing the world and all other creatures are at the service of man’s quest for loftiness. The world should provide the needed opportunities for the fulfillment of the purpose behind man’s creation. No phenomenon, creature, or indeed anything has been created in vain. Together they all pave the ground for the flourishing of mankind in a complex and purposeful system, and they are, each, one of the signs of God Almighty. All are His creations and He is the sole creator and ruler of the world. All existence including power, knowledge and wealth come from Him. 

2. Humankind: 
God created the world for humans and humans for Himself. He created humans from mud and in the soil, but He did not want them to remain in the soil and with animal instincts. He kindled the light of guidance in their souls and asked them to rise from the soil to the heavens and to Him with the help of wisdom, prophets and perfect men. 

The world will ultimately disappear, but God has created man for eternity and has made them a manifestation of Himself. Creativity, mercifulness, kindness, knowledge, wisdom, zeal, concealment of sins, splendor, justice, bounteousness, generosity, greatness, love, glory, dignity, forgiveness, insight, kingship and all other goodness and beauty are attributes of God. 

God has not created humans for aggression, bloodshed, rancor, selfishness and destruction. He made humans His vicegerents on earth and has asked them to, on the one hand, make earth prosper by using their God-given potentials and to prepare the ground for the growth of divine attributes in all humans, and to provide all with a life full of beauty, amity, freedom, justice and goodness; and on the other hand in pursuance of this path, to prepare for a prosperous, everlasting life endowed by God’s mercy. 

God has obligated humans to live divinely and socially, for it is only through social life and interactions with others that divine attributes may emerge. 

3. Obeisance to God: 
God Almighty has tied their perfection and true freedom of humans to their devotion and obedience to Himself. True freedom and obedience to God are in balance and in fact are two sides of the same coin. 

Obeisance to God means confessing to monotheism and obeying His commands, and to be free from ungodly worship. 

Obeisance to God means the acceptance of the absolute truth, the absolute light, and the absolute beauty. 

Obeisance to God means abandoning selfishness and animal instincts, power-seeking and aggression, surrendering to righteousness, justice, love, and perfection. 

And in this way, humans can achieve their true freedom and flourish, they can grow and manifest divine attributes, have affection for others, stand up for justice, and fear no power or threat, and defend the oppressed. In such an environment, one’s freedom will not impinge on any others. 

Contention and conflict are characteristic of materialistic freedom and animal instinct. The essence of all divine religions and obeisance to God and true freedom is disassociating from oppressors and instead obeying and worshiping God, for: 

– God is omniscient and knows all that is revealed or kept secret, and He is kind and merciful. 

– All creatures are humble before Him and resign to His will. 

– God is alive and is the Creator of the universe and all life. 

– God loves His creatures and desires nothing but goodness, blessings, and perfection for them, and is against bullying, injustice, selfishness and domination. 

4. Justice: 
Justice is the foundation of the creation of humankind and the whole universe. Justice is tantamount to placing every phenomenon in its own place, and providing humans with opportunities to actualize all their divine capabilities. Without it, the order of the universe will collapse and the opportunity for perfection will fade away. Without justice, it would be impossible for human society to taste real peace, beauty, joy and happiness. Justice is the main pillar of social life and without it, social life cannot continue or grow. 

Humans need to know God in order to realize a prosperous society in this world as well as to strive for a beautiful eternal life, and to this end they first have to know themselves and strive for loftiness in themselves and their societies. However: 

– as long as the world is construed as closed, limited and aimless, 

– as long as eternal life is considered imaginary and illusory and afterlife and the Judgment Day as well as reward and punishment are thought of as fictional and unreal, 

– as long as morals and commitment to them are called backwardness, and immorality, lies, deceit and selfishness are considered desirable, and humans are limited to a materialistic life in this world, 

– as long as attempts are made to replace obedience to God and following His prophets and true freedom with servitude to materialistic tendencies and animal instincts and servitude to oppressing human beings, and contention reaches its pinnacle, 

– as long as the aggressors, because of their financial, political and propaganda powers, not only escape punishment but even claim righteousness, 

– and as long wars are started and nations are enslaved in order to win votes in elections, 

not only will the problems of the global community remain unsolved, but they will be increasingly exacerbated. 

Friends and Colleagues, 

Let’s look at the situation of the world today: 

Iraq was attacked under the false pretext of uncovering weapons of mass destruction and overthrowing a dictator. The dictator is toppled and WMDs are not uncovered. A democratic government is established by the votes of the people but, after 6 years, the occupiers are still there. They insist on imposing colonial agreements on the people of Iraq by keeping them under Chapter 7 of the UN Charter. Millions of people have been killed or displaced, and the occupiers, without a sense of shame, are still seeking to solidify their position in the political geography of the region and to dominate oil resources. 

They have no respect for the people of Iraq and disregard any dignity, rights or status for them. The UN is not capable enough to solve the problems and to remove aggression, occupation and imposition. 

In Palestine, 60 years of carnage and invasion is still ongoing at the hands of some criminal and occupying Zionists. They have forged a regime through collecting people from various parts of the world and bringing them to other people?s land by displacing, detaining, and killing the true owners of that land. 

With advance notice, they invade, assassinate, and maintain food and medicine blockades, while some hegemonic and bullying powers support them. The Security Council cannot do anything and sometimes, under pressure from a few bullying powers, even paves the way for supporting these Zionist murderers. It is natural that some UN resolutions that have addressed the plight of the Palestinian people have been relegated to the archives unnoticed. 

In Afghanistan, production of narcotics has multiplied since the presence of NATO forces. Domestic conflicts continue. Terrorism is spreading. And innocent people are bombarded on a daily basis in streets, markets, schools and wedding ceremonies. The people of Afghanistan are the victims of the willingness of NATO member states to dominate the regions surrounding India, China, and South Asia. The Security Council cannot do anything about it because some of these NATO members also happen to be the major decision makers in the Security Council. 

In Africa, efforts are made to reestablish the relationships of the colonial era. By starting civil wars in large countries including Sudan, disintegration of those countries is planned in order to serve the interests of some corrupt powers. In case there is a national resistance, the leaders of the resistance are put under pressure by legal mechanisms created by the very same powers. 

In Latin America, people find their security, national interests and cultures to be seriously endangered by the menacing shadow of alien domineering governments, and even by the embassies of some empires. 

The lives, properties and rights of the people of Georgia and Ossetia and Abkhazia are victims of the tendencies and provocations of NATO and certain western powers, and the underhanded actions of the Zionists. 

The never-ending arms race and the proliferation and stockpiling of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction and the threats to use them, and the establishment of missile defense systems, have made the situation unstable. 

With regard to Iran’s peaceful nuclear program, despite the inalienable right of all nations including the Iranian nation, in producing nuclear fuel for peaceful purposes, and despite such facts as the transparency of all Iranian activities and our country’s full cooperation with the inspectors of the IAEA and the Agency’s repeated confirmation of the fact that Iran’s activities are peaceful, a few bullying powers have sought to put hurdles in the way of the peaceful nuclear activities of the Iranian nation by exerting political and economic pressures against Iran, and also through threatening and pressuring the IAEA. 

These are the same powers that produce new generations of lethal nuclear arms and possess stockpiles of nuclear weapons that no international organization is monitoring; and, the tragedies of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were perpetrated by one of them. 

Indeed, they are not against weapons, but they oppose other nations? progress, and tend to monopolize technologies and to use those monopolies in order to impose their will on other nations. But it is very natural that the great Iranian people, with their trust in God, and with determination and steadfastness and with the support of its friends, will resist the bullying and has defended and will continue to defend its rights. 

The Iranian nation is for dialogue. But it has not accepted and will not accept illegal demands. The time has come for the IAEA to present a clear report to the international community on its monitoring of the disarmament of these nuclear powers and their nuclear activities, and for a disarmament committee to be established by independent states to monitor the disarmament of these nuclear powers. 

The theories of development that are in line with the hegemonic system and not in accordance with the true needs of humankind and human societies, have turned into repetitive and bland tools for assimilation of economies, expanding hegemonic domination, destroying the environment and destroying the social solidarity of nations. There is no end in sight to this. Poverty, hunger and deprivation are hurting more than one billion of the world’s population and have dashed their hopes for a decent life. 

The dignity, integrity and rights of the American and European people are being played with by a small but deceitful number of people called Zionists. Although they are a miniscule minority, they have been dominating an important portion of the financial and monetary centers as well as the political decision-making centers of some European countries and the US in a deceitful, complex and furtive manner. It is deeply disastrous to witness that some presidential or premiere nominees in some big countries have to visit these people, take part in their gatherings, swear their allegiance and commitment to their interests in order to attain financial or media support. 

This means that the great people of America and various nations of Europe need to obey the demands and wishes of a small number of acquisitive and invasive people. These nations are spending their dignity and resources on the crimes and occupations and the threats of the Zionist network against their will. 

Friends and Colleagues, 

All these are due to the manner in which the immoral and the powerful view the world, humankind, freedom, obeisance to God, and justice. 
The thoughts and deeds of those who think they are superior to others and consider others as second-class and inferior; who intend to remain out of the divine circle, to be the absolute slaves of their materialistic and selfish desires, who intend to expand their aggressive and domineering natures, constitute the roots of today’s problems in human societies. 

They are the great hindrances to the actualization of material and spiritual prosperity and to security, peace and brotherhood among nations. I explicitly state that the Iranian people and the overwhelming majority of peoples and governments are against those deeds and perspectives of the world- domineering powers. Establishment of justice requires people who have achieved moderation and justice inside themselves, and have restrained their domineering attitudes and actualized their attributes of self-sacrifice and are at the service of humanity. The complete and full-scale manifestation of such characteristics can happen only under the rule of the righteous and perfect human being who is obedient to God and who is promised by the divine Prophets. 

Dear Colleagues, 

Of course with the grace of God Almighty a hopeful trend is flourishing in the heart and soul of human societies. The universal eagerness for justice, purity, and love for others, monotheism and the quest for perfection is clearly and increasingly on the rise. A universal resistance against the acquisitiveness, aggression and selfishness of the bullying powers is being formed. 

Today, the bullying powers’ thoughts, practices and strategies are rejected by nations and governments, and all are seeking to establish new human relations based on justice with a view to attain prosperity, perfection, security, and sustainable welfare. This is the very auspicious phenomenon that all the traditions of creation and the ruling laws of the universe emphasize and support.

Today, the Zionist regime is on a definite slope to collapse, and there is no way for it to get out of the cesspool created by itself and its supporters. The Islamic Republic of Iran, while fully respecting the resistance of the oppressed people of Palestine and expressing its all-out support for it, submits its humane solution based on a free referendum in Palestine for determining and establishing the type of state in the entire Palestinian lands to the distinguished Secretary General of the UN. 

American empire in the world is reaching the end of its road, and its next rulers must limit their interference to their own borders. Today, the thought of hegemony quickly becomes a demerit. 

And now a few words with the expansionist governments ruling global relations: 

Be aware that living with obedience to God and carrying out His orders, compassion for people and striving for the fulfillment of justice is to your advantage too. I invite you to return to the path of God, the Prophets and to the path of the people of the world and to the truth and justice. 

The only route to salvation is a divine straight path. Otherwise, God’s hand of power will emerge from the sleeve of oppressed nations and will make your life difficult, and will put an end to your hegemony. 

Let’s love the people of the world and respect their rights. Rectify past behavior. This will benefit you and the human community. The Iranian people are prepared, along with other nations, to help you be rescued from your current situation and to establish peace and prosperity. 

My Friends, 

Fortuitously, opportunities are accessible. With the grace of God Almighty, the existing pillars of the oppressive system are crumbling. Great developments in favor of humankind as well as its true and real rights are on the way. A golden and brilliant future is awaiting mankind. 
A global community filled with justice, friendship, brotherhood and welfare is at hand, as I have elaborated. 

A community which will tread the path of beauty and love under the rule of the righteous and perfect human being, the One promised by all divine prophets and the One who is the true lover of humanity. A community that will be devoid of any fear, despair and privation. Such a community will soon be ours. The community promised by the great divine Prophets Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus Christ and Mohammad (PBUH) is about to materialize. 

Let us, hand in hand, expand the thought of resistance against evil and the minority of those who are ill-wishers. Let’s support goodness and the majority of people who are good and the embodiment of absolute good that is the Imam of Time, The Promised One who will come accompanied by Jesus Christ, and accordingly design and implement the just and humanistic mechanisms for regulating the constructive relationships between nations and governments. 

Oh great Almighty, deliver the savior of nations and put an end to the sufferings of mankind and bring forth justice, beauty, and love. 

Friends; 

Let?s have a proper share in the establishment of that illuminated and promised divine age

america and its fall

Posted in Uncategorized on September 15, 2008 by psysword

well well mission accomplished is what bush had long sneered at america and the world with. in those cocky and heady days of his when no country could dislodge him from his delusions. i remember i was in new york city and there it was as i joined left wing peace rallies in manhattan, in late 2001 and 2002, there were the jeering crowds of the investment bankers and their ilk who would call us tree hugging hippies and fiddle with their silk ties. they were the ones working in lower manhattan and earning money by the millions and they didnt want the party to stop. they were all bush supporters and they couldnt understand us as we couldnt understand them. their right wing radio stations would be blaring freedom fries and down with “the french”. those useless effiminate french. but over the years just as afghanistan would be the undoing of the mighty ussr, the poor ragged armies of iraq and afghanistan have once again brought down a super power. yes i say it loud and clear this is the beginning of the end of the mighty imperial power of america. brought to its knees by its zionist master. americas fall will only announce the imminent demise of israel. it was only once america went down , was degraded enough would israel be on its own. once israel unguarded by america, it would be at the mercies of the middle east neighborhood the one it foolishly denies belonging to. once egypt and syria, iran and the rest of the arabs close in on israel, cut off its water and electricity and its coastline be blockaded, israel will become another gaza. so its a pity that america has to go down on its knees before it can get up again. but when it gets up it will be a far different creature from that we knew. God bless America

russia vs the afghan round 2

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on September 12, 2008 by psysword
Moscow eyes Afghanistan in fear
By Dmitry Shlapentokh

With Russia once again in the global arena, observers are focusing on its “conflict” with the West, namely its offensive in Georgia and its recognition of the breakaway Georgian states of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. 

Certainly, Moscow sees Georgia as an American proxy and resents the intrusion into its backyard, as well as the encroachment of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). 

Russia has other regional concerns, though. Its decision to conduct military maneuvers with Kazakhstan went largely unreported, yet this demonstrates Moscow’s increasing worries over a possible threat from the east – Afghanistan. And while

  

Russia is convinced it can withstand considerable pressure from the West, this is not the case with the danger posed by Afghanistan. 

When the Taliban took power in 1996, they evoked much apprehension among Russian leaders, including General Alexander Lebed, the strongman who many had regarded as the most likely successor to president Boris Yeltsin. 

As it turned out, it was the newly elected Vladimir Putin who in 2001 acquiesced to the US’s invasion of Afghanistan and ouster of the Taliban, as well as to the placement of US bases in Central Asia 

This was not just to please the George W Bush administration, but because of the belief that the US could play a large role in erecting a protective shield around the Taliban and other Islamic extremists. 

Russia’s relationship with the West, particularly the US, has since deteriorated, reaching, as some pundits claim, the levels of a new cold war. But Moscow’s fear of Islamists has not diminished and corresponds with the ongoing general tension between Moscow and Russia’s growing number of Muslims. 

Putin was able to “Chechenize” the conflict in Chechnya by providing the Muslim-dominated region virtual independence from Russia, including lavish subsidies, which look almost like tributes. As president, separatist religious leader Akhmad Kadyrov was able to attract a considerable number of nationalists – including former members of the resistance – to his side; and the major Russian military operations in Chechnya were over. 

Still, the end of the marginalization of the nationalists led to the spread of jihadis, who in a way reinterpreted the Marxist slogan “workers of the world unite” into a call for Muslims of all countries and ethnicities to form a collective front against the perceived enemies of Islam. 

They spread their operations from Chechnya into the northern Caucasus and beyond. While Russia was busy in the war with Georgia, the authorities proclaimed they had discovered a jihadi group, “Bulgarian Jamaat” in Bashkiria, in the heartland. Muslim-dominated Bashkiria had previously not been known to have harbored extremists. 

Troubles were also recorded in nearby Tatarastan, where locals demanded the creation of a monument to commemorate the Tatars who defended Kazan, the Tatarastan capital, from Russian troops in 1552. 

Russian authorities believe al-Qaeda wanted to take advantage of the conflict between Georgia and Russia and engage in acts of terror and sabotage. Taliban successes – and especially victory – would definitely aggravate the situation. 

It is not just the fear of terrorist attacks that concerns Russian authorities. The economic implications of a Taliban victory are clearly on their minds. A Taliban success could easily destabilize Central Asia, from which Russian receives a considerable volume of gas for resale to Europe. 

As a result, while Russia’s relationship with NATO declined steadily through most of Putin’s tenure, recently it has cooperated with NATO with regard to Afghanistan – Russia has agreed to provide a corridor for goods that the alliance sends to Afghanistan. 
This arrangement still stands, but Moscow recently sent a message to NATO that it could close the corridor whenever it wants. Officially, the explanation is that NATO has continued to press for the admission of Georgia and the US has engaged in the re-armament of the Georgian army. 

There might be another reason: the Russians might have come to the conclusion that the corridor will make no difference to the ultimate fate of the Afghan regime of President Hamid Karzai. 

The Russians bitterly remember their losing fight in the country in the 1980s, which came despite their vast troop numbers. The Kremlin is preparing for the worst, including strengthening military cooperation with Central Asia states. 

It is in this context that Russia plans military maneuvers with Kazakhstan. 

After the Georgian-Russian war, Russia became increasingly alienated from Central Asian states, many of which are concerned that Russia will engage in the same policy in their domains. 

Now, with the possibility of a collapsing Karzai government and the marginalization of the American Middle Eastern empire, the Central Asian elite could once again look to Russia as the only viable protector against the possible “Talibanization” of their region. 

Dmitry Shlapentokh, PhD, is associate professor of history, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Indiana University South Bend. He is author of East Against West: The First Encounter – The Life of Themistocles, 2005. 

turkey and russia over new geopolitical row in the caucasus

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on September 12, 2008 by psysword

Turk troubles in Caucasus

Publication time: 2 September 2008, 18:56 
The outbreak of the Russian-Georgian War earlier this month apparently caught Ankara as poorly prepared as it caught Washington. The Turkish Foreign Ministry’s section dealing with the Caucasus reportedly was virtually unstaffed. The head of the section was in Mosul on temporary assignment, the section’s number-two spot is empty and has been for the last six months. The number three was also away on temporary assignment in Nakhichevan and the other assigned section members were on vacation, thus forcing on-duty diplomats from other desks to scramble. 

This may surprise. There are abundant reasons for one to expect that Turkey would have been following events in Georgia and the Caucasus with great diligence. The two countries share common borders and intertwined histories. Istanbul ruled large chunks of the Caucasus, including much of Georgia, for centuries, and today there remains inside Turkey a small but vibrant community of Abkhazians and related Caucasian peoples. Russia for most of the past three centuries has loomed over Turkey as its greatest rival and threat, yet at critical times, such as during the Turkish War of Independence (1919-22), it has been a key ally. Today Russia supplies somewhere around 70 percent of Turkey’s natural gas and is Turkey’s second largest trading partner. 

Georgia is a transit point for Caspian and Central Asian oil and gas and as such is critical to Turkey’s ambitions to become an energy hub and to diversify its own energy supplies. As a member of NATO, Turkey has been involved in training and supplying the Georgian military. Finally, given Turkey’s own struggle with Kurdish separatists, other instances of ethno-separatism and border revision logically should command Ankara’s keen attention. In short, both Russia and Georgia are of great strategic, economic, and historic importance to Turkey, and the principles of territorial integrity and self-determination over which the Russo-Georgian War was (nominally) fought are directly relevant to the most sensitive of Turkey’s security concerns. 

Turkey’s lack of preparedness for the Russo-Georgian war is not coincidental, but instead reflects a long-standing legacy of Kemalism. The fundamental precept of the foreign policy course laid out by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, summed up in his famous phrase, “Peace at home, peace in the world,” was that Turkey should bury its imperial past, avoid foreign entanglements, and focus on internal development. Thus the Turkish Republic deliberately isolated itself from its neighbors, especially those to its south and east. It cut cultural and other ties across the board, and preferred cordial but distant relations over close involvement and interaction. As a result, Turkey today has a strong cadre of diplomats, professors, analysts and others fluent in English and familiar with the United States and Western Europe, but it lacks the sort of expertise about its own neighborhood that one might assume it would naturally possess given its imperial history. Although challenges to this policy of isolation have emerged on occasion (briefly in the 1950s and perhaps during the early 1990s), a preference for cool detachment and inward focus has remained dominant in the Turkish bureaucracy. 

There is much to be said for avoiding foreign entanglements, and the reasoning behind “Peace at home, peace abroad” was anything but frivolous. Yet self-imposed isolation carries its own costs. Those costs rose precipitately for Turkey following the end of the Cold War as its neighborhood underwent tremendous political and economic transformation. Ignoring the events taking place around it was no solution. At this time, Turkey’s self-confidence began to grow, and more Turks began to advocate that their country play a more active role in its region. One positive development has been the emergence in Turkey of think-tanks, both official and non-governmental, dedicated to foreign and domestic issues. 

Old habits and institutional practices die hard, however, and playing an active role in such a complex region is no simple matter. As a way to break out of the old mindset and gain experience in regional affairs without great risk, Turkey has been trying to play the role of mediator in regional conflicts. The architect of this approach is Ahmet Davutoğlu, a former professor and close adviser to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan who now holds the rank of ambassador. Thus Turkey has involved itself in negotiations between Syria and Israel. Similarly, Turkey’s Foreign Minister Ali Babacan has at times tried to position himself as a broker between the West and Iran.

Erdoğan in the midst of the Russo-Georgian War tried to apply a slightly more advanced variant of this formula by flying to Moscow, Tiblisi, and Baku and proposing a “Caucasus Stability and Cooperation Platform.” The idea of the platform, which is sometimes also called a pact, is to bring together the three South Caucasian states of Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan with Turkey and Russia, and enable them to mediate and solve their conflicts among themselves. 

The idea sounds attractive, but it will not go far. Such pacts can work only if all members are willing to prioritize stability and good relations over their other interests. Yet if there is one thing we know, it is that there is no consensus for stability in the Caucasus. Russia just mounted a calculated and successful effort to overthrow the status quo in the Caucasus at the expense of another putative pact member, Georgia. Russia’s war aims, moreover, extend beyond altering the balance of power in the Caucasus to restoring its position as the dominant power in Eurasia and restructuring its relations with the United States and Europe. Abkhazia and South Ossetia are pawns in a game bigger than the Caucasus. The notion that what Russia and Georgia need in order to come to a mutually satisfactory agreement is a nearby neutral venue for their diplomats to meet verges on the surreal. Perhaps for this reason, the Russian press chose to give short shrift to Erdoğan’s call for a stability pact, and instead interpret his visit as signifying support for Russia in South Ossetia. It was not the finest moment in Turkish diplomacy. 

Azerbaijan is another state in the Caucasus that has for some time been voicing an intense dissatisfaction with the status quo. In recent months, Baku has been dropping subtle threats that it might seek to revise it by going to war. In particular, Azerbaijan is dissatisfied with the outcome of the war it fought with Armenian forces over Nagorno-Karabakh (to use the most widespread English rendering of the region’s name), a predominantly Armenian enclave (technically it held the title of “autonomous oblast” in the Soviet Union) inside the Republic of Azerbaijan. The Karabakh War started in 1988, i.e. when the Soviet Union was still in existence, and ended with a ceasefire some six years later in 1994. During the war not only did Karabakh break free of Baku’s control, but Armenian forces managed to seize roughly fifteen percent of the Republic of Azerbaijan’s territory and expelled the Azeri inhabitants thereof, some 800,000 people. 

Since that time, Baku has not been able to achieve any redress through diplomatic measures. But thanks to foreign investment in its oil industry it has accumulated some wealth, and has used that wealth to engage in a military build-up. Whether or not Azerbaijan’s military is capable of defeating and driving out Armenian forces and restoring the occupied territories and Karabakh to Baku is by no means clear, but building frustration among Azeris might tempt them to test their luck. 

Turkey and Armenia are the two states in the Caucasus that have the greatest interest in preserving and building upon the status quo. The Armenians, i.e. the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (NKR) and the Republic of Armenia, won the Karabakh War and wish to keep their gains. They would like Azerbaijan and the wider world to acknowledge the de facto independent NKR as sovereign Armenian territory (either as part of the Armenian Republic proper or as a separate republic). 

Armenia in addition would like to see Turkey lift the blockade it imposed in 1993 in response to the Armenians’ seizure of Azerbaijani territory. That blockade has stunted land-locked Armenia’s economic development, leaving it dependent upon Georgia and Iran for surface routes to the outside world. The disruption Russia’s invasion has caused to the operations of Georgia’s ports, rail lines, and roads (ironically, Turkish goods are among the biggest commodities imported along those roads into Armenia) has hit Armenia’s economy especially hard. and underscored Armenia’s isolation and fundamental vulnerability. Indeed, even before this most recent war, it was clear that Armenia’s lack of relations with Turkey had left it excessively dependent upon Russia-an unhealthy situation for any state pretending to sovereign status. (Indeed, with Armenia already virtually in its back pocket, one might imagine that Russia may seek to woo Azerbaijan to its side by compelling Armenian concessions on Karabakh.) 

For its part, Turkey since the end of the Cold War has benefited in numerous ways from the retreat of Russian power and had reason to be generally satisfied with the state of affairs in the Caucasus prior to this war. The big exception is the state of its relations with Armenia. Although Turkey was one of the very first states to recognize Armenia’s independence in 1991, it never followed up to establish relations. Several difficult issues divide the two states. One bone of contention between them is Turkey’s insistence that Armenia definitively renounce any claims on the territory of the Turkish Republic. Another is Armenia’s insistence that Turkey recognize the massacres and deportations from Anatolia of Ottoman Armenians during and after World War One as a genocide. A third is Turkey’s demand that Armenia withdraw from the territory of Azerbaijan that it occupies. 

A fourth issue is, of course, the blockade. Although the imposition of the blockade was greatly appreciated by Azerbaijan, which sees itself as the victim of Armenian aggression, it has harmed Turkey’s image worldwide by reinforcing the stereotype of the “Terrible Turk” as a bully. This is something the Turks, never mind the Azeris, find particularly irksome given that it is the Armenians now who are occupying territory seized in war. Turkish support for Azerbaijan has impaired Turkish efforts to counter the lobbying by Armenian diaspora groups of legislative bodies worldwide to classify the mass deaths of Ottoman Armenians in 1915 as genocide. Opening the border with Armenia, some Turkish officials believe, would enable Turkey to thwart these efforts more effectively. 

Economics provides another incentive for Turkey to open its borders. Turkey’s east is isolated, distant from markets, and remains underdeveloped. Opening the border with Armenia would provide a boost to the local economy by enabling cross-border trade. It would also make available better routing options for oil and gas pipelines from the Caspian and export corridors to the Caspian and beyond, and thereby provide a boon to Turkey’s national economy as well. 

In a gesture intended perhaps to break the stalemate in Turkish-Armenian relations, the Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian invited his Turkish counterpart Abdullah Gül to come to Yerevan on September 6 to watch the national soccer teams of the two nations play a World Cup qualifying match. Gül, some Turks hope, will seize the moment to initiate a major shift in the region’s diplomacy. Gül has not yet committed. Were Gül to do so, it would mark a significant change not just in Turkish-Armenian relations, but even more so in Turkish diplomacy, which has a tradition of working slowly and with exceeding caution, and of letting opportunities slip by. 

Indeed, with Russian forces now inside Georgia, both Turkey and Armenia (as well as Azerbaijan) probably already have missed an opportunity to overcome their differences and to chart a path toward more secure and prosperous futures for their societies. The Russian state, whether in its Tsarist, Soviet, and contemporary forms has demonstrated substantial skill in manipulating ethnic and other cleavages on its borderlands to weaken its competitors. It is worth remembering that Russia was involved in the emergence of all of the conflicts mentioned above (Turkish-Armenian, Azeri-Armenian, Ossetian-Georgian, and Abkhazian-Georgian) among others. That is not to say that Russia invented these conflicts. Hardly. At times Russia has expended considerable efforts to contain and resolve them. But Russia is not an outsider to them and possesses an intimate familiarity with them-a familiarity that it can, has, and will deploy to its advantage. 

Strength is a relative thing. Sapping the cohesion and power of one’s potential rivals is often as effective, and occasionally even more useful, a method for overcoming them than is building up one’s own strength. There are more fissures for Russia to exploit in the Caucasus. The Turkish-Armenian-Azerbaijani fissure is an easy one to exploit. For reasons of history, memory, and culture, all of these societies remain deeply conflicted regarding relations with each other. Finding and pushing the buttons to poison the atmosphere and disrupt any move toward reconciliation is not difficult. 

Russia exerts tremendous influence over Armenia, and considerable influence over Azerbaijan. Turkey, too, is vulnerable to Russian pressure. Already Turkish businessmen are fretting over the way increased scrutiny by Russian customs of their goods is harming Turkish exports and are wondering if such scrutiny is intended as a message to Turkey to refrain from close cooperation with the United States against Russia. 

Keeping Turkey, Armenia, and Azerbaijan at loggerheads serves Russia by neutralizing the power and options of its Caucasian neighbors, keeping them dependent, and blocking the development of the Caucasus as an alternative corridor for energy and trade. It also serves varied domestic interests in each of those states. But it does nothing for those societies aside from depriving them of options for future development. 

It is not clear that Russia’s defeat of Georgia will restore it to the position of hegemon in the Caucasus, but it will increase Moscow’s ability to play the role of regional spoiler. Although many Turks and Armenians retain doubts about the propriety of closer relations between their countries, important constituencies inside the governments and societies of the two nations recognize the multiple benefits better ties would bring. Their difficulty is convincing others that improved relations are, in fact, conceivable. Thus were Gül and Sarkisian to meet this September and announce together that they intend that their states should, together with Azerbaijan, overcome their differences, their words would have a real impact. 

As the larger, more senior, more established, and more powerful state, Turkey is the better candidate to take the lead in the drive toward reconciliation. But it is not likely to happen. With Russia inside Georgia, and the Caucasus reverting again to a theater of Great Power confrontation, time is running out. Boldness is required. Yet whereas Moscow drew from its imperial collapse the lesson that fortune favors the bold, Ankara took from the Ottoman experience the lesson that extreme discretion is the better part of valor.

By Michael Reynolds, Middle East Strategy at Harvard

Kavkaz Center

an amazing article on the future of chechnya

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on September 12, 2008 by psysword

An empire on the verge of collapse

Publication time: 29 August 2008, 16:48 
US presidential candidate John McCain recently made a statement which was bound to appear at the present time. He said that after Russia recognized the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, the countries of the West ought to think about the independence of Chechnya. McCain was the first to put into words what is very soon certain to become a subject of the most partisan discussion. The senator seemed to be concerned less about the restoration of international law and uniform standards than to point to the vulnerability of Russia itself, if it becomes the target of its own moves.

However, the problem touched on by the American politician is a significantly wider one. The Kremlin has given an impetus to processes that no one is capable of controlling. And it looks as though Russia may turn out to be the principal victim of a new world order, or – more precisely – disorder. At some point events will evolve spontaneously, since Moscow’s recognition of Georgia’s autonomous regions is setting in motion a mechanism that revises the basic principle of territorial integrity in the post-war world.

The example of Kosovo, which the Kremlin likes to invoke as it tries to prove that the West has brought down the system of legal norms which ensure the priority of a nation’s territorial integrity over its right to self-determination, does not constitute a valid argument. Serbia’s Albanians gained the right to secession not because their separatism was somehow particularly compelling from a legal point of view, but because of exceptional circumstances. The genocide to which they were subjected was proven and obvious. It gave the ethnic group an incontestable right to separate from a state that had become the source of an inhuman programme of extermination. In the case of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, the military actions were on each occasion conducted under the slogan of restoring Georgia’s territorial integrity, and although both sides engaged in ethnic cleansing, there are today insufficient grounds for speaking of a total extermination of Abkhaz and Ossetians carried out by the Georgian government.

The nub of the matter is that there are so far no serious legal arguments in favour of the recognition of Abkhazian and South Ossetian national autonomy. Russia’s decision opens the way for the arbitrary launching of centrifugal forces – above all in Russia, where the problem of the federal structure still contains many concealed hazards. Vladimir Putin used force to resolve it, by simply reducing to a minimum the rights of constituent entities of the Russian Federation. By abolishing elected regional governors on the pretext that after the events in Beslan a situation had developed in the country that threatened national security, and by ensuring that the party of power had a privileged position in local parliaments, Moscow took the regions under its full control.

In reality, however, the regional movement managed to hold its own, though it was forced to keep itself hidden. Triumphant centralism in no way extinguished the wish of the Federation’s constituent entities to gain autonomy, the desired extent of which varies from region to region. Thus, first and foremost, the recognition of Abkhazia and South Ossetia undermines the state structure of the Russian Federation. Because they received no support from the outside world, Russia’s numerous separatist movements quickly shrank to nothing, but they will once again return to life if their right to exist, even if only in the distant future, is confirmed by the precedents of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

And here the example of Chechnya may prove to be formative. The scope of the powers accorded to the Chechen authorities many times exceeds the limits that Putin’s regime set for the government of constituent federal entities. For several years now, political analysts have argued that the “systemic separatism” of Kadyrov’s Chechnya long ago took the republic beyond the limits of Russia’s constitutional jurisdiction, and that Kadyrov’s formal loyalty was merely a cover for aggressive sovereignization. That is a controversial assertion, since the Kremlin has never viewed the Chechen administration as a civil body functioning under normal conditions. All the preferential powers Kadyrov received were given to him so that he could fulfil specific repressive tasks, since Chechen society could only be governed in the form of a dictatorship.

But however that may be, entirely new opportunities are now opening up for the Chechen government. If, contrary to expectation, Kadyrov really does decide to cease his obedience to Moscow, he can count on strong support from outside. Moreover, the assistance to be offered to the new Chechen separatism, will not only be political. There have recently been calls in the American press for the US government to equip Georgia with Stinger missiles.

Where specific actions are concerned, the West will have to play a delicate and difficult game, given the fact that today’s Chechnya is a conglomerate of forces and interests. It is obvious that direct cooperation with Kadyrov’s dictatorial regime is impossible. Likewise, the Caucasian Emirate, with its doctrinal connection to Al-Qaeda, cannot act as a partner to which open assistance may be provided. The only body that may be easily granted the status of an already existing government in exile which may exert a serious influence on the course of events inside Chechnya is the national-separatist group led by Akhmed Zakayev, which over long years has defended the controversial thesis that the struggle for national independence in no way contradicts the ideals and norms of a democratic society.

It is also obvious that if Zakayev becomes a source of serious material assets, it will not only help him to strengthen his own position and breathe new life into the Chechen separatist project, but also to create his own national liberation front in Chechnya, and then gradually take the fighting units of the Caucasus Emirate under his control – for one cannot really talk of a serious conflict or divergence of outlook between the various wings of the Chechen resistance. The real reason for Dokka Umarov’s decision to take the plunge into the radical waters of Islam was his realization that no support by the West for the armed underground was possible – it had nothing to do with any desire on his part to become a fanatical assassin. The quest for patrons from the Arab world was a step forced on him, not one that was mandatory.

There will also be a place for Ramzan Kadyrov in this new, bizarre conglomerate, if he enters into open conflict with the Kremlin. While it is true that Kadyrov will probably not be required to play the role of an independent figure, if he builds himself one way or the other into Zakayev’s government he will also become a full participant in the war with Russia.

Moscow’s current actions give the West a perfect right to remember once again the so-called “Brzezinski plan” for the break-up of the Soviet Union and to apply it to Russia, which is once more becoming a serious threat to the civilized world. And this means that all the separatist movements in Russia are now the subject of constant interest and assistance from Western governments.

It is worth pointing out that the Russian separatist front of today is much broader and more diverse than it was in Soviet times. The so-called “regionalists”, who uphold the right of the individual Russian regions to independence, can stand shoulder to shoulder with the national movements. Chechnya has the leading position in this process, but it will very soon be overtaken by the separatists of Ingria, eastern Siberia, the Urals, and all who hate Moscow and find the burden of its power intolerable. In London, Tbilisi, Warsaw and Washington, led by Western special services, parallel separatist bodies will act, their main task being to drain the political power from Russia in such a way that the country, devoid of internal structure, crumbles to pieces like wheaten crackers.

Source: Prague Watchdog

my reply to a zionist article in the st petersburg times

Posted in Uncategorized on September 5, 2008 by psysword

Turning Russia Into a Terrorist Enclave

 

Although no countries have joined Russia in recognizing South Ossetia’s and Abkhazia’s independence, Moscow can surely count on Hamas and Hezbollah for support.

This moral support came at a difficult time for the Kremlin. In recognizing the breakaway republics, President Dmitry Medvedev said he wasn’t afraid of the prospect of a new Cold War. I don’t know about a Cold War, but I would compare these events to what happened on Sept. 11, 2001.

Al-Qaida does not possess even a tiny fraction of the human, intellectual or financial resources held by the free world. This is because al-Qaida has never made a scientific discovery, never built a factory to produce something useful and has never done anything to benefit humanity in general. Nothing. Al-Qaida’s raison d’etre is to destroy the infrastructure and achievements built by the free world.

Al-Qaida doesn’t need to produce or invent anything to survive. All it needs is evil intentions. And it is almost impossible for the free world to dissuade terrorists from blowing up a passenger airplane or holding schoolchildren hostage when they are convinced that these are legitimate ways to fight against the West. In this way, al-Qaida’s resources can’t be compared to those of the West.

Similarly, Russia’s resources also cannot be compared to those of the West. This is because Russia has nothing but oil and gas. Our stores sell Turkish clothes, Chinese electronics, Indonesian sneakers, Finnish toilets, Taiwanese cell phones, and so on. Even cement is now cheaper to import from abroad than to produce in Russia.

Anybody who thinks Russia’s confrontation with the West is another Cold War has been misled. In a real Cold War, two countries have comparable military budgets, but this is definitely not the case with Russia and the United States. Much like al-Qaida, the main resource available to the Kremlin is malicious intentions.

With a lot of effort, the free world may be able to stop individual terrorists or small terrorist groups. But it is entirely incapable of combating terrorist enclaves, such as those controlled by Hamas.

The greatest strength of these organizations lies in their ability to turn the entire local populations into accomplices. Ask a poor Palestinian who the Jews are, and he’ll tell you they are subhuman, terrible people who killed his cousin who was on his way to blow himself up in an Israeli kindergarten. At the same time, it will never occur to this Palestinian why Israelis don’t blow themselves up in Palestinian kindergartens.

Ask a resident of Tskhinvali who the Georgians are, and he will answer in all sincerity that they are also subhuman. After all, it was the Georgians who attacked Tskhinvali with the sole purpose of killing its children. “Thank God we’re rid of them now,” many South Ossetians say.

But South Ossetians will probably never concede that tens of thousands of Ossetians live peacefully in Georgia proper. Has it ever occurred to them that the notoriously bloodthirsty Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili hasn’t attacked Ossetians in Gori, Tbilisi or Poti, where they are vulnerable and unprotected by South Ossetian leader Eduard Kokoity?

It would seem that enclaves like South Ossetia and Abkhazia cannot be defeated. Relying on the full support of their populations — at least those people who did not run away — these statelets can survive indefinitely. But there is no rational reason for Russia to support these enclaves — or for turning itself into a terrorist enclave.

 

Yulia Latynina hosts a political talk show on Ekho Moskvy radio.

my response

what rubbish this article supports. preposterous. russia and al-qaeda this is indeed an israeli wet dream manufactured in a zionist mindset. the south ossetians and abkhazians deserve their freedom as well as the palestinians. and miss yulia latynina seems not to care for the russian geopolitical interests but more for zionist hegemony. the only reason israelis dont launch suicide bombings is because the isaelis have tanks and gunships. give the palestinians f-16s and i assure u that there will never be a palestinian suicide bombing ever again. scouts honor. russias geopolitical sensitivities need to be respected. long live russian power. we dont want a unipolar world.

kashmir and muslims in general

Posted in Uncategorized on September 5, 2008 by psysword

hello there,

an interesting article with lofty ideals.however  if ur premises were correct then there would be no converts and islam would stagnate. but the opposite is happening islam is growing and is the fastest spreading religion in the world. what about these new converts are they fools ,misguided people not to remain christians, jews,or  hindus if essentially they will share the same fate as muslims in the end in the eyes of God.
do you not care for their souls or are you too busy trying to make the kashmiris bond with the baby killers of the indian army.
i agree that there can be better ways to solve issues and the best way is the Gandhian way of mass protest. for a wrong there has to be a reaction but be it non violent.
but there has been too much evil in kashmir for the kashmiris to forget. they need freedom from india. that is their choice. its like beating a wife and expecting her to stay and telling her its for the best.
indian muslims living in india have made their choice. they have dealt with the radical hindus with the help of the hindu left and have got a slightly better situation now but dont forget gujrat. the muslims in india live at the mercy of the indian moderates. is this a great way to live where u are fearful all the time, afraid of the police, afraid of the army.
bought over muslim politicians who care not for ur community.
show me a muslim country which tolerates  religious riots india style. any arab countries or  muslim ones cant ever be blamed for riots.it appears to be an entirely indian problem.
 so all i have to say is butt out and let the kashmiris make their historic choice.
most likely it will not be a paradise initially but later on maybe.
its the taliban and the mujahideen that have got the us and russia and almost everyone else on the run. its a great achievement for the taliban a ragtag army to do this. they will defeat the americans too if they carry on this way.
what ever means they may employ victory is what matters in the end and they shall write history, atleast if they can write.
the world belonged to the usa and  the ussr and then to usa alone. now islam wants a share of that world too politically, religiously and economically.
islam wants to assert itself. is there any shame in asserting itself being a power on its own. what is radical islam, al qaeda but a naked desire to share power. it is the manifestation of the hunger for power which the west knows all too well..
the europeans killed millions in their quest for power, the us built its superpower status on the deaths of millions and so did the ussr.
apparently power comes through the power of aggression. what has tibet ever achieved for itself.
look at palestine and lebanon  they have israel on the run and its only a matter of time that even israel that great mighty power that  india is in awe of will fall.
the fall of israel will only come after the fall of the u.s which doesnt look too far in the distant future.
islam also will undergo a reformation and the concept of shariat which is based on hadiths, which on the whole is discredited in the eyes of many, will be dismissed.
muslims will once again be known among the enlightened and just as the jews have realized their salvation lies in being learned so will the muslims of tomorrow learn that valuable lesson.
once muslims are learned and treated equally in the family of nations then there can be a new dawn for humanity and science and technology along with the arts will flourish. 
this world obsessed with brittany and paris hilton is not going anywhere till there is a massive shake up in the establishment of this planet.
islamic laws entirely compatible with a modern tolerant view with a scientific western outlook might soon be the reality and might infuse the people of this planet with a new vigor to become idealistic once again. for we are rich materially and so poor otherwise. where is the burning desire for an idealistic world. it has failed many times again but we really in truth need freedom from this so called freedom to do nothing.
maybe JUSTIA as the romans called it will be better served under a new islam. for in this world there is no denying that justice is at a abyssimal state especially for the worlds largest religious faction. the muslims cry for justice under their own governments and various others but it is a paradox that once the cheapest blood on this planet used to be jewish blood is now muslim. millions of muslims have died at the hands of muslims and non muslims. 
do you think that God would disregard the pleas of a billion and a half voices.
indeed i think that change commeth and it might come under a new Saladin.