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The primacy of this lesson can not be overstated. The lovey-dovey notion that the US spreads democracy and peace throughout the world exists only within the borders of the US to keep its population ignorant of the injustice and violence committed in their name.  The US, as with every great power, is largely imperialistic by nature and therefore promoting democracy and its associated freedoms is not particularly high on the US’s foreign policy agenda.  Al-Jazeera, unlike the corporate media in North America, actually reports critically on the West’s policy decisions.  Educating people on important topics though, is also a ways down the list for most of North America’s corporate media as well, so we will have to continue to look to independent media organizations for critical views of our policies.

“It’s incredible, really. The president of the United States can’t bring himself to talk about democracy in the Middle East. He can dance around it, use euphemisms, throw out words like “freedom” and “tolerance” and “non-violent” and especially “reform,” but he can’t say the one word that really matters: democracy.”

Of course not.  Government for the people tends to make policies, well, for the people and that dear friends is most certainly not business friendly policy.

“How did this happen? After all, in his famous 2009 Cairo speech to the Muslim world, Obama spoke the word loudly and clearly – at least once.

“The fourth issue that I will address is democracy,” he declared, before explaining that while the United States won’t impose its own system, it was committed to governments that “reflect the will of the people… I do have an unyielding belief that all people yearn for certain things: the ability to speak your mind and have a say in how you are governed; confidence in the rule of law and the equal administration of justice; government that is transparent and doesn’t steal from the people; the freedom to live as you choose. Those are not just American ideas, they are human rights, and that is why we will support them everywhere.”

“No matter where it takes hold,” the president concluded, “government of the people and by the people sets a single standard for all who hold power.”

Simply rhetoric?

Of course, this was just rhetoric, however lofty, reflecting a moment when no one was rebelling against the undemocratic governments of our allies – at least not openly and in a manner that demanded international media coverage.

Now it’s for real.”

Obama just speaking to hear the sound of his lovely words, I’m completely shocked.

“And “democracy” is scarcely to be heard on the lips of the president or his most senior officials.

In fact, newly released WikiLeaks cables show that from the moment it assumed power, the Obama administration specifically toned down public criticism of Mubarak. The US ambassador to Egypt advised secretary of state Hillary Clinton to avoid even the mention of former presidential candidate Ayman Nour, jailed and abused for years after running against Mubarak in part on America’s encouragement.

Not surprisingly, when the protests began, Clinton declared that Egypt was “stable” and an important US ally, sending a strong signal that the US would not support the protesters if they tried to topple the regime. Indeed, Clinton has repeatedly described Mubarak as a family friend. Perhaps Ms Clinton should choose her friends more wisely.

Similarly, president Obama has refused to take a strong stand in support of the burgeoning pro-democracy movement and has been no more discriminating in his public characterisation of American support for its Egyptian “ally”. Mubarak continued through yesterday to be praised as a crucial partner of the US. Most important, there has been absolutely no call for real democracy.”

Well of course not, real democracy is a messy people-centric process that does not ensure a business friendly stable environment.

“Rather, only “reform” has been suggested to the Egyptian government so that, in Obama’s words, “people have mechanisms in order to express legitimate grievances”.

“I’ve always said to him that making sure that they are moving forward on reform – political reform, economic reform – is absolutely critical for the long-term well-being of Egypt,” advised the president, although vice-president Joe Biden has refused to refer to Mubarak as a dictator, leading one to wonder how bad a leader must be to deserve the title.

Even worse, the president and his senior aides have repeatedly sought to equate the protesters and the government as somehow equally pitted parties in the growing conflict, urging both sides to “show restraint”. This equation has been repeated many times by other American officials.

This trick, tried and tested in the US discourse surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, is equally nonsensical here. These are not two movements in a contest for political power. Rather, it is a huge state, with a massive security and police apparatus that is supported by the world’s major superpower to the tune of billions of dollars a year, against a largely young, disenfranchised and politically powerless population which has suffered brutally at its hands for decades.

The focus on reform is also a highly coded reference, as across the developing world when Western leaders have urged “reform” it has usually signified the liberalisation of economies to allow for greater penetration by Western corporations, control of local resources, and concentration of wealth, rather than the kind of political democratisation and redistribution of wealth that are key demands of protesters across the region.”

Damn, but is nice to see geopolitical reality being espoused by a major news outlet.

“An Al Jazeera English interview on Thursday with US state department spokesman PJ Crowley perfectly summed up the sustainability of the Obama administration’s position. In some of the most direct and unrelenting questioning of a US official I have ever witnessed, News Hour anchor Shihab al-Rattansi repeatedly pushed Crowley to own up to the hypocrisy and absurdity of the administration’s position of offering mild criticism of Mubarak while continuing to ply him with billions of dollars in aid and political support.

When pressed about how the US-backed security services are beating and torturing and even killing protesters, and whether it wasn’t time for the US to consider discontinuing aid, Crowley responded that “we don’t see this as an either or [a minute later, he said “zero sum”] proposition. Egypt is a friend of the US, is an anchor of stability and helping us pursue peace in the Middle East”.

Each part of this statement is manifestly false; the fact that in the midst of intensifying protests senior officials feel they can spin the events away from openly calling for a real democratic transition now reveals either incredible ignorance, arrogance, or both.”

Ah yes, stability.  We kill and torture to maintain it, and if we are doing it, it simply must be just and interests of the “greater good”.  The world really is a nice place when you are at the friendly end of the sharp stick.

“Moreover, Crowley, like his superiors, refused to use the word democracy, responding to its use by anchor al-Rattansi with the word “reform” while arguing that it was unproductive to tie events in Egypt to the protests in other countries such as Tunis or Jordan because each has its own “indigenous” forces and reasons for discontent.

That is a very convenient singularisation of the democracy movements, which ignores the large number of similarities in the demands of protests across the region, the tactics and strategies of protest, and their broader distaste and distrust of the US in view of its untrammelled support for dictatorships across the region.

Of course, autocracies are much more stable than those messy democracies, no?

“The most depressing and even frightening part of the tepid US response to the protests across the region is the lack of appreciation of what kind of gift the US, and West more broadly, are being handed by these movements. Their very existence is bringing unprecedented levels of hope and productive activism to a region and as such constitutes a direct rebuttal to the power and prestige of al-Qaeda.

Instead of embracing the push for real democratic change, however, surface reforms that would preserve the system intact are all that’s recommended. Instead of declaring loud and clear a support for a real democracy agenda, the president speaks only of “disrupting plots and securing our cities and skies” and “tak[ing] the fight to al-Qaeda and their allies”, as he declared in his State of the Union address.

Obama doesn’t seem to understand that the US doesn’t need to “take the fight” to al-Qaeda, or even fire a single shot, to score its greatest victory in the “war on terror”. Supporting real democratisation will do more to downgrade al-Qaeda’s capabilities than any number of military attacks. He had better gain this understanding quickly because in the next hours or days the Egypt’s revolution will likely face its moment of truth. And right behind Egypt are Yemen, Jordan, Algeria, and who knows what other countries, all looking to free themselves of governments that the US and its European allies have uncritically supported for decades.”

Ah yes, but then what external enemy could the US scapegoat to cover its domestic failures at home?  I mean, actually decreasing the amount of terrorist activity would mean resources could be used to make life better for the average American rather than the military industrial complex and other conglomerates that make a goodly amount of profit on war and strife.

“If president Obama has the courage to support genuine democracy, even at the expense of immediate American policy interests, he could well go down in history as one of the heroes of the Middle East’s Jasmine winter. If he chooses platitudes and the status quo, the harm to America’s standing in the region will likely take decades to repair.”

I believe that for Obama supporting any genuine democracy will happen right after denouncing  the corrosive effects of religion , declaring his atheism, and then re-regulating the business sector.

Honest.

The infidels are swarming in the middle east.  Measures must be taken to combat this outbreak of critical thought and rationality.  Fortunately brothers (any sisters present get out now, double shame if you’re not barefoot and burqa’d) action is being taken.

CAIRO – Egypt’s most prominent democracy advocate accused President Hosni Mubarak’s government Saturday of posting Facebook photos of his daughter in swimsuits and at events where alcohol was served in an attempt to discredit him.

Keep your eyes on this 'atheist'!

Mohammed ElBaradei, the Nobel Peace Prize winner and former U.N. nuclear chief, was quoted in the independent Al-Dustour newspaper as saying the government is “waging a campaign of sheer lies” by using the photos to portray him and his family as nonbelievers — a politically damaging accusation in an increasingly conservative Muslim country.

We have the infidels, women in public with bathing suits and even a greater sin, dare I say it?  Alcohol.  Warm up your stoning arms people.

“The more than 30 photos were posted under the title: “Secrets of the ElBaradei family.” Some show his daughter in swimsuits at the beach and sitting at events in front of what appeared to be bottles of alcohol. Drinking is forbidden in Islam and conservative Muslims would generally consider a woman appearing publicly in a bathing suit to be immodest.”

The scandal.  It is shocking.  Truly shocking.

“ElBaradei has drawn the government’s anger with a campaign he started early this year boldly calling for electoral reform and constitutional amendments that would allow a credible candidate to challenge the ruling party in next year’s presidential election.

Respected internationally and untouched by the corruption tainting much of Egypt’s regime, ElBaradei brought together a coalition of young activists and opposition groups to push for change.”

Yes!  We shall smear this activist for opposing our regime.  There may be a few rotten apples in the barrel of the Egyptian government, overall we are a transparent, open democracy.

“The Facebook site also says his daughter is married to a Christian and shows an image of what it purports is her real profile from the social networking site listing her religious status as agnostic.

The Facebook site also accuses ElBaradei himself of being an atheist and of seeking to deceive Egyptians by touring mosques and being photographed praying.”

The forces of freedom in action.

We saved the best for last a double hit!  ElBaradei’s  daughter is married to a Christian and ElBaradei himself is an atheist!

Checkmate brothers!  We have ferreted out this unbeliever in our midst, he claims he wants responsible government by the people, but we have exposed him.  He wants to take our gods away and we all know the sinful immorality that will follow once that happens.

Never fear though brothers we shall keep reason safely at arms length!  Allah Ackbar!

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