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I have a parallel blog in French at http://anniebannie.net

Month

October 2008

David&Layla

I attended the projection of David&Leyla last night at the Arab film festival in Brussels

Among the shameful events of my life …

During the Q&A section of the evening

I did not speak up and yet…
I had felt like leaving well before the end and yet…
since I’ll never know the end of Waltz with Bashir (I could not care less about the lebanese nightmares of zionist assassins) I stayed
but then, why did I not open my mouth ?

I know, it was hard to hurt the feelings of the producer who was present; I am trying to make amends by putting this on line.

I felt the film as a vulgar, American vision of things
A love story between a randy and sex problems ridden jewish New Yorker and a beautiful Kurd
He is engaged to a nightmare of a woman who has the blessing of his family.
He falls in love with Leyla, the beautiful and virgin Kurdish and muslim girl about to be shipped out by Immigration.
Both families object and throw all their racist or national clichés at each other
Leyla can marry David only if he converts to islam
David converts to islam and they marry
During the wedding party David leaves the party discreetly and breaks a glass under his foot  in the Jewish tradition.
A few years later, we see them with a son sharing  Pessah with the Jewish side of the family.

The positive side of the film
The film maker remains firm on Palestine
Islam is not presented as a caricature

We share the nostalgia of the exiled Kurds
Eventually, the two families blend harmoniously with each side keeping its values

The wonderful Kurdish wedding party and the Kurdish music

And there is humour of course with poor David having to deal with the consequences of his betrayal and struggling to take his admission exam into Islam.

What was totally uncalled for :
the sex scenes. That was really the vulgar part, specially towards the end, the scence between the parents.
I cannot imagine this film being viewed in Damascus if only on this account. If you want to build a bridge between the two sides you have to take the sensitivities of the other side into account.

Two moroccan newspapers have accused the film of being zionist; I would not go that far.

Had I know, would I have gone to see it ? The answer is no. Does not mean you should not.

Wrecked Iraq: What the Good News from Iraq Really Means

Michael Schwartz , TomDispatch.com, Oct 24, 2008

As the Smoke Clears in Iraq: Even before the spectacular presidential election campaign became a national obsession, and the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression crowded out other news, coverage of the Iraq War had dwindled to next to nothing. National newspapers had long since discontinued their daily feasts of multiple – usually front page – reports on the country, replacing them with meager meals of mostly inside-the-fold summary stories. On broadcast and cable TV channels, where violence in Iraq had once been the nightly lead, whole news cycles went by without a mention of the war.

READ ON

Big Brother database threatens to ‘break the back of freedom’

By Robert Verkaik, law editor

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Government plans to build a giant database holding information about every phone call, email and internet visit were last night dealt a major blow after the man in charge of prosecuting terrorism in England and Wales warned of the dangers posed by a “Big Brother” security state.

Sir Ken Macdonald, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), told ministers not to “break the back of freedom” by creating irreversible powers that could be misused to spy on individual citizens and so threaten Britain’s hard-won democracy.
READ ON

Read also Macdonald here

America’s Hollywood-inspired anti-Arab and anti-Muslim prejudices

As Lee Bailey noted in The National (Abu Dhabi, 16 October 2008), “Jack Shaheen, a Lebanese-American academic, has published two books documenting the representation of Muslims and Arabs in American film. One, Reel Bad Arabs, dealt with the period before 11 September, and the second, Guilty, considered films made after the attacks.”

Bailey added, “…Of approximately 1,000 films that depicted Muslims and Arabs before 2001, [Shaheen] estimated that only 65 portrayed them in a positive or even-handed manner…” In other words, Americans have been brainwashed by anti-Arab propaganda for decades. More than 9/10ths of Hollywood’s productions involving Arabs have made them ugly in the minds of viewers.

On 11 October 2008, James Zogby was reported as saying,

“We are disturbed by the degree to which ‘Arab’ has become the metaphorical mud to sling against your opponent. This week, for example, the Republican Jewish Coalition released a document in which they use the term pro-Arab as a pejorative accusation. For his part, Rush Limbaugh has joined in by declaring that Obama is in fact an Arab American. Then, on Friday, after a supporter called Senator Barack Obama ‘an Arab’, Senator John McCain came to the defence of his political opponent by saying, ‘No, ma’am. He’s a decent family man and citizen…’ From this we are left to infer that an Arab man is less than a decent family man.”

Zogby’s right. It was the first thing that came to mind when I saw McCain remove the mike from the woman. However, Zogby missed my next thought: if McCain was the honourable maverick he claims to be, he would have said to the woman: “He doesn’t have an Arab heritage but so what if he had?”

But then McCain was brought up on more than half a century of Hollywood’s vilification of Arabs, so the images of “rag heads”, jihadists, Islamic extremists, terrorists and womanizing sheikhs has been implanted as deep in his mind as in 250 million or more other mentally programmed Americans. Jack Shaheen’s Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People and Guilty: Hollywood’s verdict on Arabs after 9/11 should be required reading in the schools.

Read on

Yemen seizes ‘Israel-linked’ cell

Map of Yemen

from the BBC website

Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh has said the security forces have arrested a group of alleged Islamist militants linked to Israeli intelligence.

Mr Saleh did not say what evidence had been found to show the group’s links with Israel, a regional enemy of Yemen.

The arrests were connected with an attack on the US embassy in Sanaa last month which killed at least 18 people, official sources were quoted saying.

Israel’s foreign ministry has rejected the accusation as “totally ridiculous”.

“A terrorist cell was arrested and will be referred to the judicial authorities for its links with the Israeli intelligence services,” Mr Saleh told a gathering at al-Mukalla University in Hadramawt province.

“Details of the trial will be announced later. You will hear about what goes on in the proceedings,” he added.

The 17 September attack was the second to target the US embassy since April. Militants detonated car bombs before firing rockets at the heavily fortified building.

Mr Saleh did not identify the suspects, but official sources were quoted saying it was same cell – led by a militant called Abu al-Ghaith al-Yamani – whose arrest was announced a week after the attack.

An Israeli foreign ministry spokesman said the Yemeni president’s statement was without foundation.

“To believe that Israel would create Islamist cells in Yemen is really far-fetched. This is yet another victory for the proponents of conspiracy theories,” Igal Palmor said in remarks reported by AFP.

An Israeli Trojan Horse

By CHRISTOPHER KETCHAM

Since the late 1990s, federal agents have reported systemic communications security breaches at the Department of Justice, FBI, DEA, the State Department, and the White House.
Several of the alleged breaches, these agents say, can be traced to two hi-tech communications companies, Verint Inc. (formerly Comverse Infosys), and Amdocs Ltd., that respectively provide major wiretap and phone billing/record-keeping software contracts for the U.S. government.
Together, Verint and Amdocs form part of the backbone of the government’s domestic intelligence surveillance technology.

Both companies are based in Israel – having arisen to prominence from that country’s cornering of the information technology market – and are heavily funded by the Israeli government, with connections to the Israeli military and Israeli intelligence (both companies have a long history of board memberships dominated by current and former Israeli military and intelligence officers).

Verint is considered the world leader in “electronic interception” and hence an ideal private sector candidate for wiretap outsourcing.

Amdocs is the world’s largest billing service for telecommunications, with some $2.8 billion in revenues in 2007, offices worldwide, and clients that include the top 25 phone companies in the United States that together handle 90 percent of all call traffic among U.S. residents. The companies’ operations, sources suggest, have been infiltrated by freelance spies exploiting encrypted trapdoors in Verint/Amdocs technology and gathering data on Americans for transfer to Israeli intelligence and other willing customers (particularly organized crime).

READ ON

Christopher Ketcham writes for Vanity Fair, GQ, Harper’s, Salon and many other magazines and websites. You can reach him at cketcham99@mindspring.com.

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israel

israel gaza

israel assassin

carte israel palestine

USA voting choices

If you want Iran to get bombed,

vote for Mac Cain !!

If you want Pakistan to get bombed ,

vote for Obama !!

If you want New York to be bombed,

vote for the  CIA and/or Oussama !!

If you want Gaza to starve to death,

it  makes no difference !!

(anyone of them shall do it)

If you want Baghdad really liberated

take away those foreign-liberators !!

If you want Jerusalem liberated

take away those foreign-impostors !!

Give us back Palestine and Iraq

and we shall give you Peace

and then

you shall even not need

to bomb  anybody !!

Eng. Moustafa  Roosenbloom

inventor of those Peace-Bombs

patent-pending !!

9Th. of October 2008

Choudran Raja

This Debate’s Biggest Loser

By Richard Cohen

Tuesday, October 7, 2008; Page A21

Reading William Kristol’s column in yesterday’s New York Times, I discover that Sarah Palin and I have something in common.

Kristol, who was once Dan Quayle’s chief of staff and therefore, shall we say, has a Mister Rogers approach to certain politicians, got Palin on the phone and reported that “she doesn’t have a very high opinion of the mainstream media.” This is where we are in agreement. On account of Palin, neither do I.

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