More Strikes Ahead; Or More Justification For the New Crusades?
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More Strikes Ahead; Or More Justification For the New Crusades?


Gaza City (dpa) - In a predawn raid Wednesday, Israeli army F-16 warplanes, Apache helicopters and naval boats attacked Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's beachside Gaza City headquarters, killing at least five Palestinians and wounding 10, Palestinian witnesses said. Palestinian security sources said that at least five Palestinian officers of the Elite Force 17 guard for Arafat's headquarters were killed when a special Israeli commando unit tried to raid the offices. The witnesses said that Israeli naval boats fired several shells at the building, which also sustained heavy gunfire from Israeli helicopters. The Palestinian Force 17 arrived at the scene and fired back at the Israeli naval boats, which tried to land Israeli troops to enter Arafat's ``Al Muntada'' headquarters. Ambulances arrived at the scene and transported five Palestinians who were killed and at least 10 Force 17 members who were wounded during the attack. While the Israeli army commando unit was trying to raid Arafat's headquarters, F-16 warplanes rocketed the area. A big explosion was heard in the western neighbourhoods of Gaza City. Several explosions and the buzz of bullets were heard in the western neighbourhood of Remal in Gaza City, said the witnesses.


"There is now a network being reconstructed in Europe . . . more secretive, more radicalised and with a greater capacity for violence..."

MID-EAST REALITIES - www.MiddleEast.Org - Washington - 2/20/2002: It's getting even more difficult to know just what to believe these days. Everything that comes from Washington, be it from government or from the huge government-connected sector of think-tanks and research institutes, is more and more suspect...and rightly so.

Events of recent months have no doubt spawned much more disgust and hatred of the US and Israel in various quarters. But the betting from officialdom is that the extensive American-led worldwide crackdown on all serious opposition groups of whatever kind will have its impact. And the betting from officialdom is as well that few if any groups or individuals will come along that will ever have the resources and training as Al-Qaeda; and that they will be able to keep everyone else under control.

On the other hand, while recent events may have fractured or even destroyed groups whose agenda was to oppose today's forms of American imperialism in the Middle East; more isolated, small, and deeply underground groups may have been seeded far and wide at the same time. Add to this the terribly brutal military occupations that have actually been stepped up in Palestine, in Chechnya, and in Kashmir -- plus what can now be expected in Iraq and then in other countries that may be added to the "axis of evil" countries -- and there will clearly be serious ramifications and counterreactions in the years ahead.

And that's just the point actually. The American and Israeli militarists have succeeded at the moment in getting the world that they have wanted all along. Indeed it is their past actions, not to mention attitudes, that are primarily responsible for bringing such a world about. It's a world of secret agents and high-tech militarism on a daily, escalating scale. It's a world of "freedom against terrorism", "us against them", "good versus evil"; a world where "security" concerns dominant even if far far more of their own people are suffering and dying because of cureable diseases, faulty medical care, and car accidents. The world they have forced upon all is neither the real world nor did it have to be, not by any stretch of course. But it is the world they in their arrogance, simple-mindedness, and brutish ways think they understand. And at the moment -- because of the sole superpower status of the US and it's tremendous techological and military superiority -- it's a world they will further attempt to control and manipulate and dominate until more days of reckoning results in the months nad years ahead.

By Mark Huband and Jimmy Burns

[Financial Times, London, 19 February 19 2002] Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda terrorist network is preparing for a new phase of activity, western intelligence officers have told the Financial Times.

Despite the destruction of its presence in Afghanistan, waves of arrests and the targeting of terrorist funds around the world since the September 11 attacks, security services fear that al-Qaeda is still successfully recruiting, and seeking new targets.

"There are a lot of these guys out there, and they will pick themselves off the floor and strike again," a senior intelligence official said on Tuesday.

The official confirmed that reorganisation of al-Qaeda's top leadership was under way, co-ordinated by Abu Zubaydah, a bin Laden deputy known to have escaped from Afghanistan and described by the official as a "very serious player" with an extensive knowledge of al-Qaeda's global network.

European countries and the US remain on high alert about the possibility of new attacks. Security officials are particularly concerned about al-Qaeda "sleepers" who have been in place since before September 11, and who may now be planning actions drawing upon logistical support in the UK and mainland Europe.

In the UK, anti-terrorist police are now operating on the assumption that there is a hard core of up to 100 supporters of bin Laden in the UK, any one of whom could be turned to terrorism in the months ahead.

Frank Spicka, head of counter-terrorism at Interpol, and a former secret service bodyguard to US presidents, said: "There is growing evidence that many individuals were evacuated from Afghanistan before the military offensive. It's safe to assume that many of them have entrenched themselves elsewhere in the world."

Even the most conservative estimate circulating within European security circles is that there could be up to 4,000 terrorists at large. "No one is feeling comfortable that we're on top of it," one French intelligence officer said.

Referring to prisoners held in Afghanistan and at the US base in Guantanamo Bay, one security analyst said: "It's debatable just how much the US-led offensive has contributed to our detailed knowledge of alQaeda as it is today."

Throughout western Europe, concerns are growing that September 11 acted as an inspiration to new, young recruits. "There is now a network being reconstructed in Europe . . . more secretive, more radicalised and with a greater capacity for violence," said Guillaume Dasquie,a French anti-terrorist expert and editor of Intelligence Online.


UNITED NATIONS, February 19, 2002 (Xinhua) -- Iraq told the U.N. Security Council Tuesday that it was the world's "foremost victim of terrorism" as a target of terrorist acts openly financed by the United States.

In a letter to the council's counter-terrorism committee, set up after September 11 attacks on the United States, Baghdad accused Washington of openly spending tens of millions of dollars "on troops of mercenaries to carry out terrorist operations against Iraq." "Iraq is the foremost victim of terrorism," the letter said. The U.S.-sponsored actions constituted "state terrorism" as they were funded under the "Iraq Liberation Act," approved by the U.S. Congress several years ago, it argued.

U.S. President George W. Bush last month accused Baghdad, along with Iran and North Korea, of making up an "axis of evil" bent on backing international terrorism and developing weapons of mass destruction.

Bush has been conducting a review of U.S. policy on Iraq, and has vowed to act against it if Baghdad threatened the United States, although administration officials have said there were no current plans to launch a military attack.

Under the Iraq Liberation Act, the Bush administration has agreed to provide about 800,000 U.S. dollars a month in February, March and April to the opposition Iraqi National Council (INC), which hopes to overthrow Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, reports said.

Ahmed Chalabi, a member of the INC leadership, said three weeks ago that the time had come for U.S. forces to overthrow Saddam as they overthrew the Taliban in Afghanistan.

The Iraqi letter to the Security Council committee said nations including the United States had financed, armed and trained " terrorists" who slipped across its borders to carry out kidnappings and other "terrorist acts."

Comment on these article(s)

February 2002


(February 28, 2002)
The proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, precisely what the U.S. now insists is the main reason for its expansion of its "war on terrorism" far beyond the what happened and who did it of 9/11, didn't begin with the Arab and Muslim countries, it actually began with American's main ally, Israel.

Thousands of Israeli Soldiers Attack Refugee Camps
(February 28, 2002)
Under cover of diplomatic deception the Israelis, and the Americans, are preparing the way not for a Middle East peace, but rather for a major Middle East war that will attempt to recast the politics and alliances of the region for some time to come.

Israel Further Defies U.N. and Arab League
(February 28, 2002)
More Palestinians have died and been shot in the past weeks than in any other comparable period since the major wars in 1948 and 1967. Adjusted for the size of the U.S. population, about 100,000 Palestinians have been killed by the Israelis, with continual American assistance, just since Intifada II began! the Land of the Free
(February 27, 2002)
Since 11 September last year, up to 2,000 people in the U.S. have been detained without trial, or charge, or even legal rights. The fate of most is unknown. Andrew Gumbel investigates a scandal that shames the land of the free.

"Terrorism" For All Seasons and Reasons
(February 27, 2002)
While U.S. Attorney John Ashcroft is busy draping the statue of the Spirit of Justice, and while the White House is busy making excuses for getting rid of the Israeli-centric speechwriter, David Frum, the USG is using the "terrorism excuse" not only to get ready for "regime change" in Iraq but to keep "undesireables" from even speaking up through all kinds of new intimidation and repression techniques.

Diplomatic Deceptions Amidst War and Plunder Plans
(February 26, 2002)
There are so many things going on these days it's not easy to put all the pieces together. But among the things that should be causing people truly concerned about a just and viable Middle East much pause is this: ...

The Real George Bush Junior
(February 25, 2002)
The Bush White House is a little spooked, not quite sure what the public will make of all this For this "wholesome" President who has brought "dignity back to the White House", this video documentary about to debut could be the near-equivalent to Bill Clinton's public denials -- and all those senior officials he enlisted on his behalf -- followed by Monica Lewinsky's now-infamous semen-stained little "blue dress".

Blair and Bush to Plot War on Iraq at White House Summit
(February 25, 2002)
After Vice-President Cheney -- former Pentagon chief and former oil company executive -- makes an unprecedented visit to a dozen countries in the Middle East and central Asia that surround Iraq or that will be involved in one way or another in the coming "regime change" war, British PM Tony Blair and Pres George Bush II will hold a war council at the White House.

Pearl Was Israeli
(February 23, 2002)
We now learn that Daniel Pearl, the kidnapped and killed Wall Street Journal reporter, was an Israeli citizen. What more may we learn next?

Sharon Up Against The Wall - Time of Greatest Danger
(February 23, 2002)
Bulls and Tyrants are most dangerous when wounded. And this is now the case with Ariel Sharon and the powerful Israeli military/intelligence/occupation authorities he now commands.

Uncle Sam, Uncle Tom, and Uncle Ben
(February 22, 2002)
We all know who Uncle Sam is. And there are many who think of Colin Powell as Uncle Tom, thought admittedly he usually plays his role so well in public. The Israelis and Sharon have Shimon Peres. And the Americans and Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld have Colin Powell. But...Uncle Ben?

Israelis Proceed With Long-Term Plans
(February 22, 2002)
The current Israeli Prime Minister probably had plans to do just what he is now doing long ago. Since become PM he's just been manuevering to get things in place to do so. Even at the Wye River talks after he became Israeli Foreign Minister Sharon refused to even shake Yasser Arafat's hand.

Palestinians Under Occupation Fight Bravely While Those in Exile Fail Miserably
(February 21, 2002)
As courageous and in some ways remarkable as the Palestinian struggle is against an occupation army with high-tech weapons supplied by the world's only superpower, the Palestinians now face a potentially even more catastrophic fate.

"Where Is The World?" "A Future Not Worth Living"
(February 20, 2002)
The following eye-witness news comes from Dr. Mona El-Farra of the Union of Health Work Committees in Gaza.

More Strikes Ahead; Or More Justification For the New Crusades?
(February 20, 2002)
In a predawn raid Wednesday, Israeli army F-16 warplanes, Apache helicopters and naval boats attacked Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's beachside Gaza City headquarters, killing at least five Palestinians and wounding 10, Palestinian witnesses said.

The New Pentagon "Office of Strategic Influence" - Media Missiles Ahead
(February 19, 2002)
The big "defense" and "entertainment" corporations have bought up the major American media in the past few decades. Now the Pentagon and the State Department are diversifying into the news business in order to still further manipulate the foreign media and international public opinion.

Modern-Day Saudi Arabia - Crimes, Lashes, and Cover-ups
(February 18, 2002)
It's not a crime in Saudi Arabia to stash away hundreds of millions in totally unearned kick-back commissions in secret foreign bank accounts -- oops it's actually billions now with the total of all "Royal" foreign accounts now estimated to be approaching a trillion!

U.S. Truly Becoming the Star Wars Empire
(February 18, 2002)
The American President is in Asia, touring one past and potential future battlefield in Korea. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs is in India touring another. And the Vice-President is preparing for an unprecedented trip that will take him, along with senior military and CIA operatives, to nearly a dozen countries that just happen to surround Iraq.

Saudis To Propose Deal With Israel
(February 17, 2002)
are many ways to do things; and the Saudis have specialized in doing things in the wrong ways for the wrong reasons for a very long time now.

King Bandar of Saudi Arabia
(February 17, 2002)
Is it cowardice or ignorance that lies behind the rule of Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia -- the man effectively in charge of the oil and petrodollar "Kingdom" at this crucial historic time?

To Damn or to Applaud "Speaker Burg"
(February 15, 2002)
The very notion these days of simply "trusting" anyone associated with the Israeli political establishment or more specifically in this case Israel's Labor Party is pretty difficult -- there's such a long history of deceit and mistrust, and such good reasons.

WAR! U.S. and Israel Will Take On Both Iraq and Iran
(February 14, 2002)
Flushed with their "victory" against the primitive Muslim "Taliban" (students) of Afghanistan, the new name of the game for the new Washington -- run more than ever now by the oil companies, the Pentagon/CIA, and the military-industrial-banking complex -- is "regime change".

Arafat Screams "Israeli spy! CIA agent!" at Rajoub
(February 13, 2002)
Jibril Rajoub is not just an "Arafat aide". He's actually the main guy in charge of the West Bank for the "Palestinian Authority", groomed for some time now by both the Americans and the Israelis to possibly take over for Arafat and to help force his people into submission with his thuggish bruttish ways.

Musharraf Panders; Arafat Crippled
(February 13, 2002)
You'd have to be really crazy to buy a used car from Shimon Peres, or even to take it for free as in all likelihood the expensive repairs it would require would be more than it was worth. The idea of buying Peres' warmed over doubly-castrated "peace plan" and "Palestinian State" is even more foolish.

Arafat Slaps and Whips Out His Gun
(February 13, 2002)
The new Intifada, and then the events of 911, have spawned a variety of new press and Internet outlets of various kinds. The aim of many is to try to maintain some control of the information flow to certain constituencies, to "spin" the news in the direction of their sponsors, and to push their own analysts and "experts" onto radio and TV programs.

TV Arabs: Fouad, James, and Clovis - MER FlashBack
(February 12, 2002)
Why have things gotten so depressingly miserable when it comes to mass media coverage of the Middle East, especially in the United States? There is no single answer, no magic bullet solution. The answer is quite complex and multi-faceted in fact.

Kashmir - More Killed and Tortured than in Palestine
(February 12, 2002)
Just like in the once Holy Land, the politically cancerous situation in Kashmir has been left unresolved by the international community and has now become dangerously life-threatening.

911 Was Really 'Massive Blown Back'
(February 11, 2002)
"The course that Sharon, Bush and his British cheerleader, Tony Blair seem set upon will probably in the long run destabilize the Arab moderates, to the delight of the reactionary regimes in Syria, Iraq and Iran and the only true beneficiaries will once again be the extremists and the terrorists."

Standing Ovation for Mark Bruzonsky at University of Chicago
(February 9, 2002)
In Chicago the evening of 31 January 2002 Mark Bruzonsky, Publisher of MER, gave the keynote address at the University of Chicago Model United Nations. For the first time in the history of the keynote talks at this annual event the speaker received a prolonged standing ovation.

Jordanian King Takes Desperate Gamble To Retain Power
(February 8, 2002)
Trying to save the final Hashemite throne, the Royal regime in Jordan has decided to get even more in bed with the U.S. and Israel than ever before. It may work and the final Hashemite regime in power after enthronment by the British and the CIA in the last century may survive for the time being.

Washington Scene - Arab and Muslim "Client Orgs" Totally Lacking in Credibility
(February 8, 2002)
Ariel Sharon is on his fourth visit to Washington since both he and George Bush II took power. It is a War Council, coming at a time of unprecedented danger (Sharon clearly sees opportunity), coming at a time when he finally has Yasser Arafat, now the titular figurehead of the Palestinian people, under a newfangled form of town arrest in Ramallah with tanks pointing in his direction just a stone throw away.

"Transfer" the Palestinians Say Many Israelis
(February 7, 2002)
The Moledet party's media blitz for the mass expulsion of Palestinians is gaining momentum.

Triumphant Sharon
(February 7, 2002)
Ariel Sharon has arrived in Washington triumphant as many never believed could or would happen in their worst political nightmares. He may well be the single man who has had more influence on the Arab-Israeli conflict, and on the history of the entire region, than any other.

King Prostrates Jordan for More U.S. Money and "Support"
(February 6, 2002)
King Abdullah II, born of a British mother, Anglo-American educated including at the Jesuit Center of Georgetown University, and essentially enthroned with the help of the CIA (aided by Princeton grad daughter of the former head of Pan American Airlines, Lisa Halaby, reincarnated as Queen Noor), has been ever so helpful to the Americans as now since he was enthrowed as the former long-time Crown Prince was overthrown.

(February 6, 2002)

Lie To Them And They Will Come
(February 5, 2002)
For the holidaymaker in search of a sun-soaked Mediterranean beach away from the crowds, Gush Katif sounds ideal. Or so thinks Israel's hardline tourism minister, Binyamin Elon.

Killing and Refusing
(February 5, 2002)
There is a great deal of moral twisting and turning and cover-up going on among the Israelis; and oh so necessary however late in the day. This article in today's Ha'aretz gives the impression that torturing and shooting to death many Palestinians in cold-blood is something new or rare.

King Bandar of Arabia
(February 16, 2002)

Israel sets up Iran as next target for the US
(February 8, 2002)

"Americans Can Be A BloodThirsty Lot"
(February 4, 2002)

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