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Eric writes for Al-Ahram Weekly and PressTV. He specializes in Russian and Eurasian affairs. His "Postmodern Imperialism: Geopolitics and the Great Games" and "From Postmodernism to Postsecularism: Re-emerging Islamic Civilization" are available at www.claritypress.com/
Banker hegemony: Pax Lemmus
So are the banksters all right after all?
Nope. All there is to show after 400 years is a kind of Pax Hamstera, or better, Pax Lemmus. The horrors of the 19th-20th centuries, now going off the horror chart in the 21st century. We run faster and faster, inventing and marketing ever new gadgets...
Tuesday, September 11, 2018
9/11 consequences - intervention trap
The new, brash, young (31) de facto Saudi leader Muhammad Bin Salman tours the world, insisting in meetings with western leaders that they must work closely with the Saudis to fight terrorism, even predicting publicly that more terror attacks will happen if Saudi Arabia is not treated with respect and given the leading role in fighting terrorism.
Friday, September 7, 2018(4 comments)
Back to the future: From Jackson to 'the Donald'
Who in US presidential history even comes close to Trump? While corporations run America for all intents and purposes, it has been unusual for a hardcore businessman to take the helm. And one who bragged of making and losing and making a fortune? Andrew Jackson (1767-1845, president 1829-1837) cries out as Trump's prototype.
Thursday, August 2, 2018
Trump's Grand Strategy from Quebec to Singapore
How to explain the welter of contradictions in US politics these days?
*Trump's enthusiasm for peace with Russia vs his acceptance of Cold War II with Russia, launched even as Trump declared victory in 2016.
*Trump's virtually declaration of war against the mouse, Canada, next door, with his cutting insult to Justin Trudeau as weak and dishonest, as he left the summit early and refused to endorse its free trade plea...
Thursday, July 19, 2018(1 comments)
ISIS, Hamas and Zionism: Enemies or allies?
Just as the US washed its hands of al-qaeda when they stopped following the US script, when Hamas showed itself as an effective resistance movement and a competent governing party, Israel switched to persecuting it, tacitly defending the Palestinian Authority. Things were catching up to Israel. It had its wayward Hamas and now a terrifying, if not particularly competent, more extremist Islamist group on its doorstep.
Sunday, June 17, 2018
Kayhan interview: Shia arc or Zionist arc?
Iran threatens no country nor does it try to direct political activity of others. The same specious claims were used against the earlier bete-noire of imperialism, the Soviet Union, which, in contrast to the US, did not engage in coups and election interference in dozens of countries since the end of WWII. Such claims are a mere distraction from the aggressive agenda of imperialism to control the world.
Wednesday, June 13, 2018(1 comments)
Review: Red Hangover: Legacies of 20th century Communism
Ghodsee uses her travels, studies, lectures to audiences east and west to test the waters of eastern Europe today. This fresh approach to documenting history through the eyes of both participants and sympathetic observers is more like reading a page-turner spy novel, full of often misunderstood heroes and villains, crafty confidence tricksters and lots and lots of victims. Who needs fiction? You enter the theatre of life,
Wednesday, May 16, 2018(2 comments)
Review Aftershock: A Journey into Eastern Europe's Broken Dreams
Feffer is one of the new breed of journalist-historians, postmodern in his goal of seeing history through the eyes of those living it. His inspiration is surely the Belarusian Svetlana Alexievich, awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature "for her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time". Her equally epic Second-hand Time follows Russians and other (ex)soviets from the 1980s to the 2010s.
Wednesday, May 9, 2018
Fighting imperialism from Damascus to Tehran
Now Israel faces increasing world condemnation for its crimes against Palestinians in their peaceful Great March of Return, a revived Assad in Syria, a strong Hezbollah, fresh from its election victory in Lebanon, and a battle-ready Iran.
Tuesday, April 17, 2018(1 comments)
Critiquing PCness: Jordan Peterson's 12 Rules for Life
We need a shared belief system as a code for mutually predictable relations, expectations, desires allowing for cooperation, peaceful competition. We need a clear value system because both perception and action require a goal. For this to work, we need to take responsibility to strive for goals consistent with reality. Hey, this is Islam or Christianity!
Tuesday, April 10, 2018
2018 marks three Afghan anniversaries
1978, 1988 and 1998 were fateful turning points which resounded around the world. All centred around Afghanistan. Hollywood, always a useful barometer, was in sync in a curious way.
Saturday, March 10, 2018(2 comments)
History lesson: From Dunkirk to Berlin
In the 1930s the perceived threat was the "specter of communism" haunting Europe. Today the perceived threat is the "specter of Islam," now reduced to Iran, as the only anti-imperialist Muslim state. Terrorism then was seen to be communism, though the Soviet Union was peaceful.
Sunday, January 21, 2018(3 comments)
America 2018: postmodern 'Germany 1933'
Imagine waking up to the shock, the excitement of the new Germany in 1933, when Hitler became chancellor. An earthshaking moment, promising a new Germany, for Germans. Overnight, the new flag is raised everywhere, children don uniforms, fascist supporters face off against the communists and social democrats.
When Trump sailed to victory in November 2017, there was a similar sense of a new US...
Thursday, January 11, 2018
My Yakoubian Cairo
I stumbled into Cairo after Tashkent, where I had stumbled across Islam, courtesy of dictator Islam Karimov, who -- despite his name -- persecuted brave Muslims mercilessly ...
Thursday, November 9, 2017(2 comments)
Canada: Metis Civilization or Canada Syndrome?
Justice Thomas Berger wrote in 1966: "They began by taking the Indians' land without any surrender and without their consent. Then they herded the Indian people onto reserves. This was nothing more nor less than Apartheid, and that is what it still is today."
Thursday, November 2, 2017
Israel as a Russian-Soviet invention
Rabkin delves deep into the Russian Yiddish roots of Israel and brings together many startling facts that suggest there was a much better option for Palestine and the Jews, one that was scuttled by secular Jewish fanatics inspired by their experiences before and after the Russian revolution.
Sunday, July 30, 2017(2 comments)
Russia in Ukraine: enemy or friend?
Kiev should be careful in its game of trying to starve the rebels into submission. Russians as a people have never backed down when faced with a hostile enemy.
Sunday, July 23, 2017(1 comments)
NATO - Balkan paper tiger Part II
NATO is really irrelevant, despite its shiny headquarters in Brussels and its 29 members (and still counting). It is the EU that holds the promise of western materialism and freedom to live and work abroad, and that will continue to shape the Balkans, replacing its rich history and culture with a Euro stamp.
Wednesday, July 19, 2017(9 comments)
NATO - Balkan paper tiger Part I
It was with a sigh of relief that the 28 European member heads of state welcomed the abrasive American leader in May 2017 for the dedication of the new HQ. Trump came, but took the opportunity to lecture his NATO allies for not spending enough for collective defence, and declined to endorse Article 5 of the alliance's founding treaty, which states that an attack on any member is an attack on all. Subtext: Enough of pulling.
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
Picking up the Cold War pieces: Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan
Dual US-Somali citizen Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo became Somalia's president in February 2017, approved by the US, refugees are returning from the US, Canada and Europe, and remittances from them buttress the economy.
Just to make sure Farmajo knows who's really in charge, Trump ordered an air strike on suspected militant bases in April 2017, near the Bab el-Mandeb strait chokepoint separating Yemen from Eritrea.
Sunday, April 9, 2017(1 comments)
Syrian Attack: Trump's Cuban Missile Moment
Historical parallels abound here. Just as Putin was understandably supportive of Trump's campaign for the presidency, Soviet Russia in its time very much wanted to be friends with Hitler, the ultimate 'pact made in hell'. A good idea given the times; the problem was that Hitler had other priorities
The Rise of Islamo-Christian Civilization
We are told we live in a Judeo-Christian civilization, that the West has a Judeo-Christian heritage, a concept useful to a largely Christian empire where Jews play a powerful role, but one that is rejected by serious scholars, both Christian and Jewish. Talmudic scholar Jacob Neusner says "there is no such thing as the Judeo-Christian tradition. It's a secular myth."
Friday, January 27, 2017(3 comments)
Europe in the Trump era
The surprise victory of the Brexit campaign in Britain, despite the overwhelming propaganda against it, finally forced the European status quo to face reality.
Tuesday, January 24, 2017(4 comments)
Trump faces gnawing problems in the Great White North
The current situation recalls the relations that Justin's father Pierre and his successor Jean Chretien had with thorny American presidents of yesteryear, Johnson, Nixon and George Bush. Relations reached ever new low points over Vietnam and Iraq.
Saturday, December 31, 2016
Glasnost 1988: Historic Moment for Iran and Russia
Iran played no part in the US-backed 'jihad' in Afghanistan in the 1980s that brought the collapse of the Soviet Union. Iranian leaders knew that nothing good would come from working in alliance with America.
Sunday, November 13, 2016(8 comments)
Trump: A people's 'new world order' taking shape?
Trump's final ad, a 2-minute masterpiece of populist rhetoric infuriated the ADL for hinting the obvious: the forces of international finance that have their own agenda for the US, behind our backs, and whose agent is/was Hillary Clinton. He depicted a "global power structure" that is "bleeding America dry" with horrible trade deals that enrich elites and open the gates to mass immigration.
White Tears from Israel
In a Brandeis survey of Jewish students: One-quarter of undergraduate respondents describe hostility toward Israel on campus by their peers as a "fairly" or "very" big problem and nearly 15% perceive this same level of hostility toward Jews.
The study reaches the no-brainer conclusion: Connection to Israel is the strongest predictor of perceiving a hostile environment toward Israel and Jews on campus.
Tuesday, October 18, 2016
A Tale of 2 British Muslim politicians: Interview with al-Quds
work to improve relations between Muslim communities and wider British society has meant that he received security threats from both Islamist and far-right activists. As a boy, he encountered racism, which led to him and his brothers taking up boxing.
Wednesday, August 31, 2016(6 comments)
Mind control and Cyberwarfare: 'The Russians Are Coming!'
The media campaign attacking Russia is in high gear these days. Russia is accused of cyberwarfare, leaking poor Hillary's emails, and now, of a slick disinformation campaign to undermine poor NATO, our bastion of peace.
But is it possible the Russians are actually the 'good guys' here?
Saturday, August 20, 2016(1 comments)
Iran "28 Mordad" and the Great Game 2.0
The 1953 coup in Iran, known as "28 Mordad", was a key move in what I refer to as the "Great Game 2": the imperialist powers united in a Cold War against socialism and third world liberation, which went into high gear following World War Two.
Thursday, August 18, 2016(14 comments)
Interview: Trump - 'the wise fool'
As long as there is empire, there will be insurgencies and terrorist acts--including in the West. That was Donald Trump's point when he told Americans Obama and Clinton "founded ISIS." Sadly, he was dismissed as a buffoon. But Trump is a classic example of the "wise fool".
Reality games but not reality shows
These days we hear a lot of "Pokeman Go". What do you think about the effect of reality games within US and around the globe? What will be the future of these games, which attract ten of millions? Do they reinforce or neglect which aspects of human life?
Saturday, July 30, 2016(8 comments)
Renouncing Jewishness: Shlomo Sand and Gilad Atzmon
Israel as a Jewish state is an anachronism, an embarrassment in the postmodern age. A reminder of the horrors of Nazism, but not as the Zionist crafters of the "holocaust industry", or "holocaust religion", would have it.
Wednesday, July 20, 2016(2 comments)
War and Peace Part II: Azerbaijan and Palestine
Both Armenia and Israel insist history bequeathed them the lands they seized, and their tragic 'holocausts' justify their violation of international law to ensure their safety.
Both countries have lived this occupier lifestyle on a war footing ever since, and yet prosper even as their nemeses wallow in poverty and suffering. How do they do it?
Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot: Afghanistan is FUBAR
"The Taleban Shuffle", the name of the book the film is based on, was discarded, along with any critical content, for "Whisky, Tango Foxtrot", a military euphemism for 'what the f*ck'. Frighteningly apt for the "forgotten war".
Another slang term that fits is FUBAR (fucked up beyond all recognition/ repair), which is accurate not only for the film, but, as I realized, squirming through the film, for the whole US effort in Afg
Friday, July 8, 2016
Blush off Trudeau rose
Already worrying signs are surfacing - Syrian refugee funny business, anti-Palestinian and anti-Russian silliness, marijuana busts...
Thursday, July 7, 2016(2 comments)
War & Peace Part I: Armenia & Israel
What keeps pesky Armenia, flouting international law, wedged between hostile Turkey, tiny Georgia and Iran, going? The parallels between Armenia and Israel, Armenians and Jews, are remarkable, and provide answers.
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Killer Drugs: Sleep through your Waking Life
Ricci's latest novel, Sleep, inspired by his own sleep disorder, is really more a fun text book on the latest brain research and the blind use of powerful drugs to alter--and possibly restructure (who knows?)--the brain. It's like a 'don't smoke' ad that's actually informative and hilarious, with a classic 'death of a salesman' plot moving it along.
Thursday, June 16, 2016
Thank Reagan for Orlando
The Orlando shooting on June 12 has nothing to do with Islam and everything to do with US policies, both domestic and foreign.
Saturday, June 4, 2016(13 comments)
Cutting through transgender debate
While Obama daily launches drones, killing dozens of innocent foreigners (or militants, it doesn't matter - both drone deaths are crimes against humanity), we are fed self-righteous nostrums, showing what a great liberal he is (soon to be joined, no doubt, by the supreme court).
Basic Income: Helicopter money
GAI (guaranteed annual income, also BIG -- basic income guarantee) has been quietly mooted by both left and right since the 1960s. Economist Milton Friedman called it (approvingly) "helicopter money". What could be easier to administer, to end the most obvious source of social injustice?
Saturday, May 21, 2016(2 comments)
Why did US seize Iran's $2 Billion?
A US decree was issued to seize $2 billion in assets belonging to the Central Bank of Iran (CBI), holding Iran financially responsible for the 1983 bombing that killed 241 Marines at their barracks in the Lebanese capital, Beirut. It clearly is part of a tactic of goading Iran, pushing it in an attempt to bring Iran to heel. Either that or to undermine the deal.
The new troika in the Middle East?
Egypt's hand-over of Tiran Island to the Saudis, Saudi flirting with Israel, Turkish disarray -- all conspire towards an unholy alliance.
Monday, March 21, 2016
Trudeaumania charms Washington
Trudeau's budding "bromance" with US President Barak Obama in March marks the first official visit by a Canadian leader since 1997, when Liberal Prime Minister Jean Chretien visited the last charismatic Democratic president, Bill Clinton. Chretien was not invited by Clinton's successor, George Bush, who was
Thursday, March 17, 2016
Palestinians and Their Allies Resilient
Q: What are the achievements and gains of the Resistance Movements in Palestine in the past year in the face of the Israeli occupation?
...In sports, there are small but rewarding achievements. The Palestinian national team rarely practice together and yet they still managed to play in the Asia Cup Games last year.
Tuesday, March 8, 2016
Iranian elections: repercussions in Middle East
The Islamic revolution has had bad press in the West from the start, but the results show a level of freedom that contrasts favorably with the West, and puts paid to the mantra that the 2009 elections were stolen by the bad guys.
Saturday, February 27, 2016
Canadian legend Chapter V: Caught in Middle East quicksands
Just a few months into his reign, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau finds himself embroiled in Middle East politics. Protests have arisen over two government policies -- the $15 billion sale of military equipment to Saudi Arabia, and government attempts to quash BDS.
Friday, February 12, 2016
Aziz Ansari: Romance with a punch
Azizi Ansari's runaway bestseller Modern Romance is the perfect self-help book. Lots of data, thoughtful interviews with psychologists and 'victims', funny. The celebrated stand-up comic confirms the truth in the oxymoron, "the wise fool". And surprisingly, finds that humans pretty well figured things romantic out long before computers.
Turkey vs ISIS: Where Is the New Caliphate Now?
One of the latest suspected Islamic State (ISIS) attacks was in the heart of Istanbul against foreign tourists. If true, ISIS broke its devil's pact with the Turkish government as a sort-of ally, undermining Erdogan's rationale to let the Islamic State carry out attacks as long as they target Kurds. Pacts with the devil usually go wrong and this appears to be one that did.
Friday, January 8, 2016(4 comments)
Trump's Syria plan: 'Let Russia do it'
It is precisely because Trump is not a Nazi (and hence easy game for the mainstream) that the US imperial elite are so incensed by him and his sudden, immense popularity.
The Real Downton Abbey
A comparison with the historical Downton Abbey and its rulers (we will never know what the servant class was really up to) reveals a bit more grit, lots more grime and a big helping of sensation.