One tragedy doesn’t need to diminish another. You can stand with Paris, you can stand with Yemen, you can stand with Lebanon, you can stand with Syria, you can stand with Iraq, you can stand with Nigeria, you can stand with Libya, you can stand with BlackLivesMatter, you can stand with the University of Missouri, you can stand with Palestine, you can stand with South Korea, and the South Sudan, we can stand with refugees, we can stand with Muslims, and you can stand with all of them at the same time. You can care about all of them. We don’t need to play “oh you didn’t mention this, or this was worse” competitions with human suffering. It’s sickening, this is not a fucking game, this is the actual loss of human life.
Correction: ISIS was not a subsidiary of Al Qaeda, although there were links between the groups which contributed to its rise before Al Qaeda disavowed ISIS. “ISIS grew out of the former Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), a jihadist militant umbrella group that is believed to have helped create the al-Nusra Front in mid-2011” (x). al-Nusra is al Qaeda’s official arm in Syria.
A short (and incomplete given the scale of US-propagated violence across the globe) account of the myriad ways in which US imperialism directly led to creation of ISIS. US imperialism is never the answer and the US-led coalition now will only destabilize the situation further and lead to even more violence and long term problems in the entire region.
The new rules extend to the city’s schools, as Islamic State leaders have reportedly set out a new curriculum. In a video for the Wall Street Journal, Reem Makhoul explains the details of the new rules.
The mother of American journalist James Foley, who was purportedly beheaded by Islamic militants, said on Tuesday her son gave his life to expose the suffering of the Syrian people and she asked his kidnappers to release their other captives.
“He was an extraordinary son, brother, journalist and person,” Diane Foley said in a post on a Facebook page set up by the Foley family.
“We implore the kidnappers to spare the lives of the remaining hostages. Like Jim, they are innocents. They have no control over American government policy in Iraq, Syria or anywhere in the world,” Diane Foley said in the statement.
Foley was a graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.
“Journalists face threats in many forms as they try to report difficult stories that need to be told, but the attack on Jim was barbaric,” Northwestern said in a statement. “It was, in a larger sense, an attack on freedoms necessary in a civilized society and across strained cultures. Jim endures for us as a beacon reminding us of the risks implicit in shedding light where inhumanity can take hold.”
Islamic militant sect, ISIS, which has been rampaging across the north and west of Iraq since last month, has been demolishing sacred sites such as shrines and mosques around the historic northern city of Mosul in Nineveh province.
Photographs from the area posted online under the banner “Demolishing shrines and idols in the state of Nineveh” depicted mosques being turned into piles of rubble – explosives deployed against Shiite buildings - and bulldozers flattening the shrines.
At least four shrines to Sunni Arab or Sufi figures have been destroyed by the bulldozers, according to AFP. The structures had been built around graves of Muslim saints. Six Shiite mosques have also been destroyed using explosives.
UN: ISIS is crucifying, burying alive, and selling children into slavery
It was incredibly difficult to find a safe-for-work image to go along with this headline. A quick Google image search of ISIS’s brutality against innocent children is bone chilling and nauseating.
from New York Times:
Islamic State militants are selling abducted Iraqi children at markets as sex slaves, and killing other youth, including by crucifixion or burying them alive, a United Nations watchdog said on Wednesday. Iraqi boys aged under 18 are increasingly being used by the militant group as suicide bombers, bomb makers, informants or human shields to protect facilities against U.S.-led air strikes, the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child said. “We are really deeply concerned at torture and murder of those children, especially those belonging to minorities, but not only from minorities,” committee expert Renate Winter told a news briefing. “The scope of the problem is huge.” Children from the Yazidi sect or Christian communities, but also Shi'ites and Sunnis, have been victims, she said. “We have had reports of children, especially children who are mentally challenged, who have been used as suicide bombers, most probably without them even understanding,” Winter told Reuters. “There was a video placed (online) that showed children at a very young age, approximately eight years of age and younger, to be trained already to become child soldiers.”
Mistake Number One: Treating the enemy as absolute evil, not even human.
Barack Obama called the Paris tragedy “an attack on all of humanity,” which means that, even for the president, IS fighters stand outside that category. They are evidently some other species and merely appear to be human. And this was the mildest of descriptions in this overheated political season of ours. “The face of evil” sounds modest indeed compared to the vivid images offered by the Republicans vying to replace him. For Ben Carson, IS are a bunch of “rabid dogs”; for Ted Cruz, “scorpions.” Donald Trump calls them “insane,” “animals.”
Mistake Number Two: Buried in the assumption that the enemy is not in any sense human like us is absolution for whatever hand we may have had in sparking or contributing to evil’s rise and spread.
How could we have fertilized the soil of absolute evil or bear any responsibility for its successes? It’s a basic postulate of wars against evil: God’s people must be innocent.
As a result, we don’t need to look at all the ways in which the U.S., even in battle mode, continues to contribute to the successes of Islamic State fighters in Sunni Arab lands by, for instance, supporting an Iraqi Shi’ite regime in Baghdad that has a grim history of oppressing Sunnis, a history that drives many of them to tolerate, or even actively support IS.
Mistake Number Three: Call it blotting out history.
We lose the ability to really understand the enemy because we ignore the actual history of how that enemy came to be, of how a network of relationships grew up in which we played, and continue to play, a central role.
The historical record is clear for all who care to look: The U.S. (the CIA in particular) was a key to the creation, funding, and arming of the mujahidin, the rebel fighters in Afghanistan who took on the Soviet army there in the 1980s, the men (often extreme Islamists) whom President Ronald Reagancompared to our founding fathers. From that situation came al-Qaeda.
Mistake Number Four: We assume that the enemy, like Lucifer himself, does evil just for the sake of doing it.
Even the most liberal parts of the media often can’t see IS fighters as more than “lunatics” bent on “slaughter for its own sake.”
Under such circumstances, what a foolish task it obviously is even to think about the enemy’s actual motives. After all, to do so would be to treat them as humans, with human purposes arising out of history. It would smack of sympathy for the devil.
Mistake Number Five: To convince ourselves that the Islamic State is evil incarnate, we imagine that the enemy is as relentless, intractable, and implacable as the devil himself.
As a result, we also imagine that nothing we could do might diminish their will to evil. Since, as we see it, we had nothing to do with creating these monsters, no changes in our policies or actions could possibly influence their behavior. And since they are just crazy — not capable of normal rationality — there is no point in trying to talk with them.
By this route we finally, inevitably, arrive at…
Mistake Number Six: The belief that we have only one option – annihilation.
Or if that proves impossible, despite the military forces at our disposal, then at least containing them forever.
In fact, the presidential candidates of this moment all demand annihilation and nothing less. In Donald Trump’s words, “bomb the shit out of ‘em.” In Hillary Clinton’s more demure formulation, “crush ISIS… break the group’s momentum and then its back.” Even Bernie Sanders agrees: “Our priority must be… to destroy the brutal and barbaric ISIS regime.”
Funeral services for the 13 Syriac Orthodox who were victims of three suicide attacks in Qamishly yesterday. Of the 15 dead, 13 were Syriac and 2 Kurds.
1. Ramy Tarzi Bashi 2. Aboud Hagiki 3. Robert Krio (Johnny) 4. Eli Kaspo 5. Issa Hanna 6. Anton Yossef 7. Eliamo Malke 8. Nedal Abdo 9. Marwan Shamoun 10. Dany Hanna 11. Shabo Malke 12. Jack Tuma 13. Robert Hegame ———————– 14. Salah Karmo 15. Eaad Nasser