Sub-Continent Rushes Toward Conflagration
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Sub-Continent Rushes Toward Conflagration

December 31, 2001


By Bill Gertz

[THE WASHINGTON TIMES - 31 Dec 2001]: Pakistan and India are readying their military forces - including their ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons - for war, The Washington Times has learned.

U.S. intelligence officials say Pakistani military moves include large-scale troop movements, the dispersal of fighter aircraft and preparations for the transportation of nuclear weapons from storage sites.

India also is moving thousands of its troops near the border with Pakistan and has dispersed some aircraft to safer sites away from border airfields, say officials familiar with intelligence reports of the war moves.

Pakistan is moving the equivalent of two armored brigades - several thousand troops and hundreds of tanks and armored vehicles - near the northern part of its border with India.

Indian and Pakistani troops exchanged heavy mortar fire over their border in southern Kashmir today, Agence France-Presse reported. Five Indian soldiers were seriously injured in the heaviest shelling in four months, a senior Indian army official said.

More than 1,000 villagers were evacuated from their homes overnight for the operation, according to the report.

Officials say the most alarming signs are preparations in both states for the use of nuclear-tipped missiles.

Intelligence agencies have learned of indications that India is getting its short-range Prithvi ballistic missiles ready for use. The missiles are within range of the Pakistani capital, Islamabad.

Meanwhile, Pakistan is mobilizing its Chinese-made mobile M-11 missiles, also known as the Shaheen, which have been readied for movement from a base near Sargodha, Pakistan.

Intelligence reports indicate that India will have all its forces ready to launch an attack as early as this week, with Thursday or Friday as possible dates.

Pakistan could launch its forces before those dates in a pre-emptive strike.

Disclosure of the war preparations comes as President Bush on Saturday telephoned leaders of both nations, urging them to calm tensions, a sign of administration concern over the military moves in the region.

The administration also fears that a conflict between India and Pakistan would undermine U.S. efforts to find terrorists in Afghanistan.

U.S. military forces are heavily reliant on Pakistani government permission to conduct overflights for bombing and other aircraft operations into Afghanistan, primarily from aircraft carriers located in the Arabian Sea.

With tensions growing between the states, U.S. intelligence officials are divided over the ultimate meaning of the indicators of an impending conflict.

The Pentagon's Joint Staff intelligence division, known as J-2, late last week had assessed the danger of conflict at "critical" levels.

Other joint intelligence centers outside the Pentagon, including those supporting the U.S. military forces responsible for the Asia-Pacific region and for Southwest Asia, assess the danger of an India-Pakistan war as less than critical but still "serious."

Intelligence officials are especially worried about Pakistan's nuclear arsenal because control over the weapons is decentralized. Even before the latest moves, regional commanders could order the use of the weapons, which are based on missiles or fighter-bombers.

The Prithvi has a range of about 155 miles, and the Indians are estimated to have some 75 Prithvis in their arsenal.

They also are working on longer-range Agni missiles. U.S. intelligence officials believe India has about 60 nuclear weapons that can be delivered by missiles or aircraft.

Its nuclear-capable aircraft include Russian-made bombers, including 10 Tu-142 Bears and four Tu-22M Backfires, as well as several hundred MiG-27, MiG-29 and Su-30 fighter-bombers.

Pakistan's missile force consists of some 50 M-11s, which have a range of about 186 miles, enough to hit the Indian capital of New Delhi. Its medium-range Ghauri missiles have a range of about 800 miles, enough to hit most parts of India.

U.S. intelligence agencies have obtained reconnaissance photographs from one Pakistani missile base that show storage-shed doors open in preparation for the movement of missiles. One of the photographs shows a line of 47 rail cars on a track near the base in preparation for the movement of missiles and their warheads.

The private Natural Resources Defense Council estimates that Islamabad has between 24 and 48 nuclear weapons.


By Anwar Iqbal

WASHINGTON, Dec. 27 (UPI) -- India and Pakistan are not ready to fight another war. At least not yet. Leaders on both sides want to take their nations as close to a war as possible without actually fighting it. By doing so, they hope to force the other to capitulate.

The objectives are obvious. India wants to settle the Kashmir issue. Pakistan does not want to settle this 53-year old dispute at this stage when India is in a better position to influence the outcome. Instead it wants to weather the storm and seek a solution when it is in a position to negotiate a more favorable deal with India. However, such eyeball-to-eyeball situation is always fraught with dangers. Indian and Pakistani leaders may not want a war yet but such excitement and tensions always increase the chance of an accidental war. In a situation like this even a minor incident can lead to, what both governments call the "unthinkable," a nuclear catastrophe.

The current crisis in the Subcontinent is linked to the Sept. 11 terror attacks in the United States. The Indians believe that the 9/11 tragedy has created a strong dislike in the world for guerrilla wars and armed struggles. They want to take advantage of this atmosphere to end insurgency in Kashmir where, according to one estimate, more than 30,000 people have been killed in clashes between Pakistan-backed militants and Indian security forces during the last 10 years.

This is why India responded so quickly and strongly against the Sept. 11 terror attacks, offering logistical support and even military bases to U.S. forces for operations into Afghanistan.

By doing so, India hoped to isolate Pakistan, a nation that helped the Taliban militia capture Kabul and remain in power for more than five years. Since several Kashmiri militant groups were trained by the Taliban and al Qaida network of Osama bin Laden, the Indians hoped that with some efforts they could turn the war against the Afghan and Arab terrorists into a war against the Kashmiri militants too.

The Indians were further encouraged when a U.S. bomb hit a building in Kabul, killing 16 fighters of Lashkar-i-Toiba, one of the two groups New Delhi blames for attacking the Indian parliament on Dec. 13.

But they were surprised and annoyed when Pakistan changed its Afghan policy overnight, dumped its Taliban allies and offered military bases to the United States for operations against the Taliban.

To India's dismay, Washington not only accepted Pakistan's offer but also removed economic and military sanctions imposed after the May 1998 nuclear tests by the two South Asian neighbors. Washington further annoyed India by also removing the so-called democracy sanctions imposed on Pakistan when President Gen. Pervez Musharraf toppled former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in October 1999.

Disappointed that Pakistan was so easily able to walk out of a situation that India hoped to exploit for its benefit, New Delhi continued to remind the world that "militants in Kashmir are also terrorists."

"We refuse to accept this distinction between terrorists on Pakistan's western border (Afghanistan) and those on its eastern border (Kashmir). Terrorists are terrorists," says India's Foreign Minister Jaswant Singh.

As the Americans crushed the Taliban and al Qaida and installed a new government in Kabul, the Indians felt that the U.S.-led forces may pull out of the region without helping them crush "the Kashmiri terrorists," as India's former foreign secretary, S. K. Singh said.

The Dec. 13 suicide attack on the Indian parliament rekindled India's hopes. India's parliament is recognized as a symbol of democracy around the world. As the legislative body of the world's largest democracy, it enjoys a universal respect. An attack on this symbol of political stability was condemned across the globe.

Aware of its symbolic importance, the Indians decide to use the attack on their parliament to portray Kashmiri militants and their Pakistani backers as terrorists.

Demanding that Pakistan ban Lashkar and Jaish-i-Mohammed, the other group allegedly involved in the Dec. 13 attack, and arrest their leaders, India recalled its ambassador from Islamabad. It also decided to sever rail and road links with Pakistan and later banned Pakistani airlines from flying over its territory.

India also decided to halve its diplomatic staff in Islamabad and asked Pakistan also to do the same. It also banned Pakistani diplomats from traveling outside New Delhi.

Combining its diplomatic offensive with military maneuvers, India's Defense Minister George Fernandes reported moving tens of thousands of troops and "strategic missiles" along its border with Pakistan. "Strategic missiles" are capable of carrying nuclear warheads.

India's military and diplomatic offensive put Pakistan on the defensive. It took away the initiative from Pakistan and forced it to merely react to Indian moves.

Pakistan copied India in slapping similar restrictions on the Indian mission in Islamabad. It also imitated India in banning Indian airlines from flying over Pakistan.

Pakistan also was forced to move thousands of troops and "strategic weapons" to the Indian border. In doing so, it informed the United States that it may no longer be able to keep its troops along the Afghan border deployed there to catch al Qaida and Taliban fugitives.

Most of these measures will hurt Pakistan more than they will hurt India. Indian airlines do not fly over Pakistan but the Pakistan International flies over India. Now it will have to fly hundreds of extra miles for destinations in Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

The Indian restriction was so effective that Pakistan had to seek exemption from India to allow its president to fly over to Nepal next month for attending a regional summit conference.

Similarly, travel restrictions hurt the Muslims of the Subcontinent more than they hurt India's majority Hindus. India has almost 200 million Muslims. Many of them have relations in Pakistan. Travel restrictions will prevent them from visiting each other.

India also has another card to play. It has already said that it is reconsidering the Sindh Basin Agreement that allows unrestricted flow of Indus and one of its tributaries to Pakistan. If India decides to cancel this agreement and stops the rivers from flowing into Pakistan it will play havoc with Pakistan's agriculture-based economy.

Seen against this backdrop, it seems that Pakistan has few options against India and fewer sympathizers around the world.

India has made it obvious that it will continue to increase its pressure on Pakistan unless Islamabad, 1) bans Kashmiri militant groups, 2) arrests their leaders, and 3) puts an end to armed struggle in Kashmir.

Pakistan can either accept this demand or go for the obvious, i.e. a war. Many in Pakistan realize that this time a war with India will not be as "civilized" as the wars of 1965 and 1971 when both sides avoided civilian targets.

They know that this time the Indians will go for major economic targets, such as the Tarbela and Mangla dams near Islamabad. The combined effect of destroying these two dams and blocking the rivers from flowing into Pakistan can trigger the beginning of the end for Islamabad.

India can also attempt to capture Pakistani Kashmir, merge it with India and thus settle the Kashmir dispute to its satisfaction. The other option will be to enter Pakistani Kashmir, destroy militant camps and go back to Indian Kashmir.

Yet another option for India is to attack Pakistan's soft-belly, a narrow corridor in the south that joins the southern Sindh province with the rest of Pakistan. Occupying this corridor will also sever Islamabad's links with its economic hub and the main port of Karachi.

Any of these attempts will trigger the process that will lead to the demise of the Pakistani state, as it exists today. Faced with this scenario, any government in Pakistan can be forced to go for "the unthinkable" and use the nuclear weapon for protecting the state.

However, the chief spokesman for the Pakistani president, Maj. Gen. Rashid Qureshi, told journalists in Islamabad recently that "both India and Pakistan are responsible states and for them the nuclear option is unthinkable."

Pakistanis hope that the fear of a nuclear war will prevent the Indians from pushing Islamabad to the brink. They believe that the Indians will continue increasing the pressure on Pakistan as long as they think they can reap political benefits from it.

They argue that the moment the Indians realize that the situation could actually lead to a nuclear conflict, they will relax their pressure.

"And once this pressure is relaxed, the two governments can then engage in useful talks for settling their disputes," said a senior Pakistani diplomat in Islamabad.

Reports from New Delhi suggest that while the Indians are not yet willing to reduce their pressure on Pakistan, they also do not want a war. At least not yet. Instead, they believe that they are in a position to force Pakistan to accept their demands without going to war.

But neither Pakistanis nor the Indians say what can prevent an accidental war in such a feverish situation.


NEW DELHI, Dec. 31 (UPI) -- Foreign ministers of India and Pakistan may meet in Nepal next week in an attempt to defuse growing tensions between the two neighbors, officials said Monday.

This is the first gesture of peace in weeks between the two neighbors who are mobilizing troops and nuclear weapons against each other.

Officials sources in both New Delhi and Islamabad, however, warned "not to expect miracles at this meeting," as a senior official at the Pakistan Foreign Office said.

In New Delhi, officials of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party told journalists that India has agreed to allow its foreign minister, Jaswant Singh, to meet his Pakistani counterpart, Abdul Sattar.

The two foreign ministers, they said, would meet "on the sidelines of a summit of South Asian nations in the Nepalese capital, Katmandu, next week."

The officials, who were talking to journalists after talks between Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and India's opposition leaders in New Delhi, ruled out a meeting between Vajpayee and Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf. "Such a meeting will serve no purpose," said one official.

Vajpayee had invited senior Indian politicians for consultation on growing tensions between India and Pakistan.

India recalled its ambassador from Islamabad and imposed several restrictions on Pakistan after the Dec.13 suicide attack on its parliament in which 14 people, including five attackers, were killed.

India blamed Pakistan-backed Kashmiri militants for the attack and asked Pakistan to disband two such groups it said were responsible for the attack.

While denying involvement, Pakistan has since frozen the assets of Lashkar-i-Toiba and Jaish-i-Mohammed and arrested their leaders along with dozens of militants.

However, both the countries have continued to deploy additional troops and nuclear-capable missiles along their border.

Such moves caused alarm across the world and several world leaders, including U.S. President George Bush, urged both India and Pakistan to show restraint.

India was initially rejecting any meeting with Pakistani leaders but BJP officials told journalists that while supporting the Indian position "on cross-border terrorism in Kashmir," several world leaders have urged India to "revive talks with Pakistan."

Comment on these article(s)

December 2001


U.S. and Israel Now Have Iraq In Their Sights
(December 31, 2001)
Britain's Telegraph Newspaper is well-plugged in with both the Americans and the Israelis, and is helping fan the flames of the likelier than not upcoming collision with Iraq. At the moment the U.S. is short of cruise missiles.

Sub-Continent Rushes Toward Conflagration
(December 31, 2001)
Pakistan and India are readying their military forces - including their ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons - for war.

Israelis Preparing The Way for 2002 - Now a Potentially Cataclysmic Year
(December 31, 2001)
Yasser Arafat remains under town siege in Ramallah, and his personal as well as historical nemesis, Ariel Sharon, continues to attempt to provoke more Palestinian hatred and violence which he will then use to justify still further Israeli military escalations, potentially cataclysmic in the year about to begin.

"We Will Win Nuclear War"! Crisis Escalates Further!
(December 31, 2001)
As the year turns, not since fourty years ago, not since1962 and the "Cuban Missile Crisis", has the world faced the possibility of an iminent orgastic nuclear war between two major countries.

The "Muslim" Bomb - Both Pakistan and Iran now Targeted in addition to Iraq
(December 30, 2001)
The Israelis have a vast arsenal of nuclear weapons; and in fact helped instigate the very regional arms race they are now so worried about; then fueled it further by ongoing attempts to crush and subjugate the Palestinians while colonizing still more territories.

Now, let's talk about terrorism, shall we?
(December 30, 2001)
If you are still shaken by the horrifying scenes of September 11, please observe a moment of silence for the 5,000 civilian lives lost in the New York, Washington, DC and Pennsylvania attacks. While we're at it...

"Internationals" Victorious For The Day Over Israeli Army
(December 30, 2001)
You've got to hand it to these international activists, they are succeeding at the moment at least in drawing attention to what the Israeli occupation is really all about, they are putting their bodies on the line, they have now finally after so many years and provocations begun to organize and demonstrate for real. But there are a few serious problems in this.

India-Pakistan War Brews - Potential Nuclear Conflagration Looms
(December 29, 2001)
No matter what American and Israeli officials now say in public, at some point the "war against terrorism" as defined in Washington and Jerusalem was likely to begin to quickly expand in unforeseen ways in both the Middle East and the sub-continent.

Islamic Militants Attack Israeli Patrol, Defying Arafat's Truce Call
(December 29, 2001)
Ignoring Yasser Arafat's truce order, two members of the militant Islamic Jihad group on Friday attacked an Israeli army patrol in the Gaza Strip in a failed suicide mission.

(December 28, 2001)
"I wouldn't be the least surprised if there were a nuclear explosion in Israel or the United States." Congressman Chris Shays (R-Conn.) Chairman of the House subcommittee on national security

The Real "OBSTACLE TO PEACE", and Egypt Targets Women - MER FLASHBACK
(December 28, 2001)
It's front-page news! Bill Clinton says Israeli settlements are an "obstacle" to peace. But this isn't the real story; nor are settlements the real obstacle.

(December 26, 2001)
Both India and Pakistan in recent days have deployed substantial combat forces to important strategic areas along their borders and with tension continuing to mount the Indian army has ordered residents in border villages to leave.

Pakistan warns of nuclear conflict with India!
(December 25, 2001)
As in Palestine, the Kashmir conflict originally resulted from Western policies in the last century. Now both conflicts threaten to explode into wars of mass destruction in this century.

The Terrible State of the Palestinians
(December 24, 2001)
After all his bluster and threats, Yasser Arafat remains essentially an Israeli prisoner in Ramallah, one of the militarily-surrounded Palestinian Bantustans that Arafat himself helped create when he put his pen to various Israeli schemes for which he received, quite literally, billions of dollars in payoffs and arms which he then distributed to cronies and entourage to keep himself in power.

Holy Land ShowDown - Will He or Won't He?
(December 24, 2001)
An atmosphere of tension and expectation has descended on Bethlehem as Palestinians wait to see whether their leader, Yasser Arafat, will successfully defy an Israeli ban on his travelling to the town for a highly symbolic Christmas Mass.

Israel Searches Convoy for Arafat...Political Brinksmanship Awaits Clock
(December 24, 2001)
As the clock ticks toward Christmas Eve and Midnight a grand game of political brinksmanship is underway between the two old protagonists, Ariel Sharon and Yasser Arafat.

Israel Prepares For Arafat's "Walk" or Copter to Bethlehem
(December 23, 2001)
It's even possible Arafat could tomorrow win this round in what has evolved into a kind of personal Sharon-Arafat political wrestling match. We're all anxiously waiting to see just how this drama is going to unfold Monday; and whether Arafat can even approach the political skill and timing of Mahatma Gandhi.

Arab Regimes Helped Bring Sharon To Power - MER FlashBack
(December 23, 2001)
It was the Arab client regimes themselves, especially the Hashemites in Jordan and the Egyptians, who actually helped bring Ariel Sharon to the pinnacle of power in Israel. This from MER archives four years ago:

"It's a humiliation for the entire Palestinian people"
(December 23, 2001)
"This is an example of the arrogance of occupation. It's a humiliation for the entire Palestinian people, Christians and Muslims... Sharon is playing with fire -- he wants blood and tears instead of Christmas carols."

Yasser's Historic Moment Monday To Walk Peacefully Into History
(December 22, 2001)
As we said the other day, we're all aware that Yasser Arafat's record of doing the right thing at the right time for the right reasons in the right way is rather tarnished, to say the least. But even tarnished almost consumed historic figures sometimes have their possible moments of historic redemption.

War Year 2002 - Stage Set for "Transferring" Palestinians, "Jordan is Palestine"
(December 22, 2001)
If major wars and more "terrorist incidents" break out in the Sub-Continent and elsewhere in the Middle East region, as now seems likely in the weeks and months immediately ahead, that is just what Ariel Sharon and the "right-wing" Israelis -- with at least acquiescence from Barak, Peres and the so-called "left-wing" Israelis -- have been waiting for.

Darkness in the Once Holy Land
(December 21, 2001)
"The Oslo agreements were a sham... The understanding on the Palestinian side was that Oslo would eventually lead to Israeli withdrawal from the territories. In fact, the accords turned into a state-run land grab of astounding proportions..."

Arafat Threatens to Walk to Bethlehem - NewsFlash!
(December 21, 2001)
Just a week ago now MER wrote of the urgent need for Arafat to "do a Gandhi". "Message to Arafat - Do a Gandhi, right now, before it's too late!" was the title of the MER article published last Friday at this time. And it seems MER's impact is even greater than we imagined!

U.S. and Israel Cozier And More Intertwined Than Ever
(December 21, 2001)
The United States plans to offer Israel an expanded missile defense cooperation relationship. The cooperation is meant to follow the model of the current U.S.-Israeli Arrow-2 joint program.

Time to Suspend Israel from the U.N. General Assembly
(December 20, 2001)
The General Assembly could act seriously today; it has the power. And there is the precedent as well -- South Africa in the days of Apartheid. The U.S. has no veto in the GA; something that under today's conditions, and precisely because of last week's "astounding" Security Council veto, should be acted upon.

"So let's hope the president will resist the siren calls for new wars"
(December 20, 2001)
Warnings have already come, and in public, from all over. The Germans, the French, the U.N., there's already quite a long list. But the Americans are definitely planning to march forward on their crusade...there are many "phases" already not just planned but in various forms of execution.

Peres Himself "Shudders"; and "Evil" Israeli-Style Unleashed
(December 19, 2001)
Shimon Peres ought to know. This is hardly the first time the Israelis have been caught at what for most of the world deserve to be categorized as "war crimes." And for every time they have been caught there are ever so many other times that the dastardly things they have done have been successfully hidden from view, so far that is.

Thank You Der Spiegel
(December 18, 2001)
We've yet to see the full English translation of yesterday's important article by Publisher Rudolf Augstein of Der Spiegel. But right away we can certainly comment that it's about time German intellectuals and journalists realized that precisely because of their past they have a special obligation to stand up against racism and facism and brute militarism -- from whatever quarter it rears its ugly tentacles.

LIES, TRICKS, DECEPTIONS...then and now?
(December 17, 2001)
Was what the world watched a few days ago, originally broadcast direct from the Pentagon no less, the real OSB and the whole truthful story of the conveniently found and timed tape? Was this just a part of the real but more more complex and convoluted story? Was there a CIA Sting involved as has been reported by the establishment British press in London over the weekend?

Destroying Saddam/Bathist Regime Being Planned by US, Israel
(December 17, 2001)
When you send a recently retired Marine Corp General and regional Commander to the Middle East as your "Peace Negotiator" it's war not peace you have in mind. But the popular press is ever-so-gullible and compliant of course.

Neighborhood Bully - A Former U.S. Attorney General on American Militarism
(December 15, 2001)
When I picture a high-ranking government official, I think of someone who is corrupt. I think of a corporate shill. I think of someone who is not a friend to the people of this country. I think of Lord Acton's famous line about power corrupting, and absolute power corrupting absolutely.

Israeli Stage Set For Regional War and Destruction
(December 15, 2001)
"Arafat's real crisis is among his own people. They see him as just an Israeli sheriff who happens to speak their language."

Message to Arafat - Do a Gandhi, right now, before it's too late!
(December 14, 2001)
Palestinian support groups in the US and elsewhere are pathetically weak, terribly lead, and still engaged most of the time in rather juvenile uninformed internal debates about who is who and what is what. But even so, once and awhile there's a good idea circulated in their incestuous and bloated email forums, though there is hardly ever any follow-through in any serious way.

Arafat's Last Stand... European Betrayal... Devastation and Catastrophe...
(December 14, 2001)
"Arafat came as collaborator as much as liberator. For the Israelis, security - theirs, not the Palestinians' - was the be-all and end-all of Oslo. His job was to supply it on their behalf."

Arafat in Bunker; Israeli Missiles Seek Bin Laden; Propaganda Campaigns Escalate
(December 13, 2001)
Greatly emboldened because there have not been the kinds of major demonstrations and violent clashes in Arab and Muslim countries that some predicted, the U.S. and Israel have decided to push forward with crushing military power, still more covert CIA actions, and further administrative and financial restrictions worldwide.

Israelis Spies Held by U.S. While Israelis Unleash More Death and Destruction
(December 13, 2001)
The very day the White House went to great lengths to position the Israeli flag right behind the President, and to purposefully highlight the Star of David to the greatest degree possible, the whole subject of Israeli espionage against the U.S. has also unfurled once again.

Israeli Spying in USA, Part I
(December 13, 2001)

Israeli Spying in USA, Part II
(December 13, 2001)

Israeli Spying in USA, Part III
(December 13, 2001)

Israeli Spying in USA, Part IV
(December 13, 2001)

Boycott the USA Says Famous Egyptian
(December 12, 2001)
When Egypt's most popular television commentator, Hamdi Qandil, called for a boycott of U.S. goods, which his government opposes, it got past the censor. But he was stopped from repeating it.

Israel: The 51st State?
(December 12, 2001)
September 11th, 2001, has become the tragedy of opportunity for Israel; a perfect turning point in which the "war against terrorism" analogy has been fully exploited by Ariel Sharon's radical right-wing government to sustain, even intensify, the horrors of Israel's occupation of the Palestinian territories.

What Drives A Bomber to Kill the Innocent Child? MER FLASHBACK
(December 11, 2001)
I once asked the head of the Lebanese Hizbollah if he could explain to me how the mind of a suicide bomber works. Sayed Hassan Nasrallah was dressed in his black turban and robes. He had formerly been the Hizbollah's military commander in southern Lebanon and from his legions had emerged the first Arab suicide bombers who would - after more than a decade and a half - sap the morale of Israel's retreating army.

"...Symbol of Hatred and Fury of This Filthy War"
(December 10, 2001)
They started by shaking hands. We said 'Salaam aleikum' - peace be upon you - then the first pebbles flew past my face. A small boy tried to grab my bag. Then another. Then someone punched me in the back. Then young men broke my glasses, began smashing stones into my face and head.

Robert Fisk Nearly Beaten to Death
(December 9, 2001)
Robert Fisk is one of the world's preeminent experts about the Middle East and world affairs. He is the longest serving Western correspondent in the region. He is also an extraordinarily courageous person who always conducts himself with great determination, fortitude, and professionalism.

Just Call Me 'Uncle Jim', Saudi Propaganda, Academia Subverted - MER FLASHBACKS
(December 4, 2001)

Lies About "Peace" and a "Palestinian State" - Then and Now
(December 1, 2001)
More than twenty years ago now another American President was promising a complete "settlement freeze" and a "transitional period" leading to a "Palestinian State". The notion that George W. Bush is doing so for the first time, sui generis, is not only blatantly historically fallacious but downright disingenuous.

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