Thursday, March 31, 2011
I've just found out that this document is 13 years old, so I doubt any progress has been made since then on discovering what HAARP really does. Anyway, maybe someone will follow it up now, in light of new info on New Zealand and Japan?
Here's the press release from Rand on the Allen appointment:
And here is quite a comprehensive explanation of weather warfare, mentioning of course the lovely Rand Corporation:
And here, in black and white, proof that the Rand Corporation was instrumental in developing the 'Mutually Assured Destruction' (MAD) principle, together with the idea of a "winnable" nuclear war:
You couldn't make this stuff up!
It turns out that the same US Admiral who oversaw the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and who was also involved in the BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill, was also in New Zealand with 8 US Congressmen, and left just before the earthquake hit. He now works for the Rand Corporation (more on that later) and is an expert in - get this - weather warfare!
Also, just after the earthquake in New Zealand, a group of lawyers wrote an open letter, saying how worried they were about the response to the earthquake, as it opened the road to fascism! Truth getting much stranger than fiction now, folks, and I certainly wouldn't have turned this information up without some digging:
NB Scroll down to comments for the open letter, signed by legal scolars.
Here he is interviewed about Hurricane Katrina, where he reports a lot of E-Coli in the water, and that he doesn't want the residents repopulating the town too soon...
And here, much to my incredulity, is an article about the BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill, which interviews both Matt Simmons (oil industry expert who died mysteriously) and......Adm. Thad Allen - and they're discussing using the nuclear solution to seal the Deepwater Horizon 'accident':
Still, beggars can't be choosers, and someone, somewhere, has spent a lot of time putting this together. Question is who? And is it just the much-touted NWO global currency by the back door?
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
I may take issue with him on one or two points - namely his obvious despisal of trailer-park people, who have children without thinking about it. This strongly implies that it's OK for rich and educated people (like his parents) to have kids, but for me this is not the point: the point is the carbon footprint of everyone on the planet, and often the rich, ultra-rich, elite, middle and upper classes have the most enormous carbon footprints, with their yachts, holiday homes, expensive cars, designer labels, plastic surgery etc. A dirt-poor family with ten children in Africa will have a much smaller carbon-footprint, and will know the meaning of graft, so should be (in my book) prioritised over the two-kids-one-dog family in the West, who very self-righteously recycle the bottles of Champagne every Sunday.
But these are minor points, and I'm not advocating eugenics here. Peter Joseph's overall presentation is an excellent articulation of some of the overwhelming problems that face humanity, offering some solutions. Take a listen:
This from Washington's Blog:"The Russians proved that communism is a joke.
And when China moved towards a mixed capitalist-socialist system, it was the nail in the coffin for communism worldwide. Whose left? North Korea?
So more or less everything the Russians and Chinese said about communism was wrong. It failed.
Unfortunately, a lot of what they said about capitalism was right.
Specifically, while I know next to nothing about Marx, Engels or other communist thinkers, it seems pretty obvious that the U.S. is in a phase of "late stage capitalism" where financial speculation by huge companies has replaced productive investment, capital improvements, innovation, and job creation, and the financial sector has grown so big - and inequality has grown so large - that it has destroyed democracy like a malignant cancer.
As economist Kimball Corson wrote last year at Seeking Alpha:
In a nutshell and stripped of his own inflammatory terminology and technical economic errors, Marx had this to say in his book, Das Kapital.
Marx argued that at capitalism would succeed in its initial stages quite well in promoting growth by means of capital investment in new technology and improved means of production. Everyone would prosper. As capitalism developed, however, he argued that capitalists would appropriate to themselves more and more of the profits or income from the economy and that laborers would come to have increasingly less.
Over time, in time and such circumstances, Marx claimed that, first, capitalistic economies would undergo ever more vicious cyclical swings from boom to bust. These cycles and the on-going process of capitalism would, second, result in ever richer capitalists and ever poorer working classes, until, finally, at some point, laborers would revolt and take over the means of production, causing Socialism to ensue as a result. Socialism, in turn, was merely a transitional step to Communism.
What we observe of the American economy, at its present stage, is exceptionally close to what Marx described, whether we like it or not. Let me describe the ways:
1. Earlier in our history, up until about 30 years ago, capitalism as it was practiced in the United States did do very well and materially aided a good standard of living for most Americans.
2. Since then, real wages have stagnated and income has become seriously concentrated in the upper income households. The top 1/10 of 1%, get 6% of all income. As Harvard Professor Elizabeth Warren explains it, for long stretches of time in recent years, the growth in the nation's GDP has gone almost entirely to the top 1% or less of the population. The top 40% get about 78% of all income. Now couple this with the following fact:
3. Productivity Growth Quarter in 4Q 2009 was 6.2%. For the year, it came to 5.1%. As Brad DeLong describes this current slice of reality, “The flip side of the jobless recovery is a high productivity-growth recovery--and, with stagnant wages, a rise in the profit share (read, capitalist’s take). This is becoming more prevalent.
4. The distribution of income and wealth in the U.S. has progressively become worse over the last several decades as real wages have stagnated or declined a bit.
5. So to have our cyclical booms and busts become more severe over the last decade. We have had the dot com boom and bust and now the housing boom and bust. We are anything but stable, especially now as we are loaded up with debt and deficits.
6. The share of income or profits being generated by small business is falling and the share of total profits being generated by large businesses is increasing.
7. Government has enacted much special interest legislation contrary to the public interest, to aid the concentration of wealth and income in the hands of the wealthiest and feather representatives own beds.
8. Now, what we see with increased productivity and the maldistribution of income and wealth is a growing surplus of labor or the unemployed.
9. We are beginning to see embryonic development of reactionary grass roots political movements, such as the Tea Party crowd. While now small, without good leadership and ill-focused, grass root movements do not have to stay that way. Once started, they can change quickly and gain good focus and leadership.
10. As a matter of public policy, we are adamantly and deliberately ignoring entirely too much that is important here, all to our prospective detriment. In short, we are asking for public upheaval and revolt.
11. The public, both right and left, are truly exasperated with our federal government, frustrated with our economy, mad at Congress and the Administration and ripe for something new that offers us all a better prospect.
However, unlike Marx (or Corson), I don't think that transitioning from a broken form of capitalism to communism would be a good thing. Do you want to live under a brutal tyrant like Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot or Kim Jong Il? I don't.
As I wrote in an essay called "Don't Blame Capitalism for Wall Street's Corruption and Lawlessness":
As I wrote last year:
When Mahatma Gandhi was asked what he thought about Western civilization, he answered:I think it would be a good idea.I feel the same way about free market capitalism.
It would be a good idea, but it is not what we have now. Instead, we have either socialism, fascism or a type of looting.If people want to criticize capitalism and propose an alternative, that is fine . . . but only if they understand what free market capitalism is and acknowledge that America has not practiced free market capitalism for some time.
Of course, even Adam Smith didn't believe in unrestrained free market capitalism. And a free market is not possible without strong laws against fraud.
Does this mean that free market capitalism is dead?
No. And I'm not sure that there is any better alternative.
But capitalism has to grow up and become less naive, relying less on a blind faith in "the invisible hand" and more on an understanding of human nature, including insights from the field of behavioral economics.
Of course, with high-frequency trading dominating the market (and see this), frontrunning, permanent bailouts (and see this), government-sponsored credit rating scams and enterprises, the creation and maintenance by the government of banks so big that their very size warps the entire system, socialism for the big boys, and all of the other shenanigans going on, we don't currently have free market capitalism.
So the bottom line is really that the communist philosophers accurately predicted that capitalism would become corrupted ... just as communism became corrupted by rulers who lived in the lap of luxury and gave themselves all the perks while they imposed poverty and extreme oppression on their people.
Indeed, anyone who assumes that any system - communism, capitalism or any other "ism" - is infallible and that its leaders don't have to be held accountable is just a useful idiot.
I think a large part of the problem with both communism and late stage capitalism is too much power in too few hands - whether in the hands of the "Party" or of the oligarchy of big banks (made enormous by the government, not by free market capitalism), the outcome is the same ... the little guy gets shafted."
"Though the river's current never fails, the water passing, moment by moment, is never the same. Where the current pools, bubbles form on the surface, bursting and disappearing as others rise to replace them, none lasting long. In this world, people and their dwelling places are like that, always changing.
...Nor is it clear to me, as people are born and die, where they are coming from and where they are going. Nor why, being so ephemeral in this world, they take such pains to make their houses pleasing to the eye. The master and the dwelling are competing in their transience. Both will perish from this world like the morning glory that blooms in the morning dew. In some cases, the dew may evaporate first, while the flower remains--but only to be withered by the morning sun. In others the flower may wither even before the dew is gone, but no one expects the dew to last until evening.
...People want power and authority, for if their family has none, others look down on them. But people who have property have many worries, too, just as the poor people who envy them do. Whenever you must rely upon others, so are not self-sufficient, then those others come to possess you. Even helping a stranger, if you are drawn to that person, infringes on your independence of spirit. On the one hand, it is difficult to maintain independence in following the standard social conventions, but, if you do not, you will seem absurd, will look like a lunatic. And wherever you live, whatever you do, in the short period of time of this life, you should seek peace of mind--but this seems impossible for human beings.
... In general, the past, present, and future history of human beings is a product of the mind. If there is no peace of mind in possessing the elephant or horse, or the seven wonders or treasures of the world, it is meaningless to have palaces and buildings of many stories. Now I dwell in my tranquil residence. It is only a ten-foot hut, but I love it. When I want to go to the capital for something, I may feel ashamed to go in the appearance of a beggar, but I return feeling sorry for the people I see there, who are so caught up in and preoccupied with wealth and honor, so busy doing things. If you are doubtful about what I am saying, look at the situation of the fish and the birds. Fish are always in the water, yet they don't become bored with the water. If you are not a fish you probably can't understand that feeling. Birds hope to live in the forest. If you are not a bird, you probably can't understand that motive. My feeling about my tranquil residence is of the same kind. Who can understand this if they haven't tried it?"
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Monday, March 28, 2011
1) Exxon Mobil - oil;
2) Bank of America - Banking;
3) General Electric - Energy;
4) Chevron - oil;
5) Boeing - contractor to the Pentagon;
6) Valero Energy - oil and gas;
7) Goldman Sachs - Banking;
8) Citigroup - Banking;
9) Conoco Philips - oil;
10) Carnival Cruise Lines - Leisure;
Do you see a pattern here?
And here is a list of prominent members of the British Eugenics Society:
Oh Wow! I just found this, and it makes for interesting reading:
As usual, please read all of the above with an open and enquiring mind, and the question: 'could this possibly be true?'.
British House of Commons rejects woman's right to vote.
American Cancer Society was founded.
Income tax was first collected by the U.S. Government.
Canberra became the capital of Australia.
Rockefeller Foundation founded with initial donation of 100 Million dollars from John T. Rockefeller.
Oh, and this, from Truthradio.com:
"In the years before the Federal Reserve System was set up by Congress there was a movement that objected to money power in the United States being run by politics. “Politicians should not be in control of our money” was the cry. The clever central bankers used this discontent to justify taking over the checkbook of the United States. When the “Christmas Massacre” happened in 1913 and the Federal Reserve became reality, the power over our national checkbook passed from Congress to the owners of the twelve regional Federal Reserve Banks. The so-called Federal Reserve Board was established as the Congressional ombudsman to stand between those private banks and the Congress.
Our purpose here is not to examine the clever complexities used by the central bankers to remove power from Congress. Instead, we have a simple observation. Politicians are those who serve the People in Congress. “We the People” elect which politicians will serve us in Congress, and we delegate our power to that body. We expect politicians to do what we want them to do.
We do not elect bankers.
So, when the politicians in Congress heeded the cry that authority over money creation should not be held by “politicians,” what they really were deciding is that “We the People” should lose our control over money creation."
Well of course the last decade or so could be called an agenda of sorts, with mayhem in every part of the globe, and such little action taken to improve matters. Poverty could easily be eradicated with the wider redistribution of wealth, for example, there is no excuse at all for anyone to go to bed hungry, there is the possibility of clean drinking water for everyone. So increasingly it begins to look like the elite do not want these improvements to come about. When you add to this the abysmal state of education, and now the draconian austerity measures, the theory of eugenics starts to look like part of that agenda. And then, hey-ho, a letter from a US President surfaces, dated 1913 (same year the Federal reserve was created), and here it is below:
I'll be posting some more about eugenics, now that this has surfaced.
"The reason Muammar Qaddafi is a target is because he has been a thorn in the side of anti-revolutionary forces since he took power in Libya, overthrowing the King and nationalizing the oil industry so that the people could benefit from their oil resources.
Libya's Revolution brought free health care and education to the people and subsidized housing. In fact, students in Libya can study there or abroad and the government gives them a monthly stipend while they are in school and they pay no tuition. If a Libyan needs a surgery that must be done overseas, then the government will pay for that surgery. That is more than the soldiers of the United States military can say. While Libyans enjoy subsidized housing, members of the U.S. military risk foreclosure while they serve their country abroad. Money from oil is directly deposited into the accounts of every Libyan based on oil income. As one Libyan told me recently, the idea is that if people have what they need, then they don't have to deny rights to or harm others and the Revolution believes that it is the responsibility of the government to provide the basic needs of its citizens."
"The Council was about to vote on a report that affirmed and praised Libya and Colonel Ghaddafi for THEIR HUMAN RIGHTS RECORD. The report said that the Ghaddafi government protected "not only political rights, but also economic, educational, social and cultural rights," and praised it for the nation's treatment of religious minorities, and the "human rights training" received by security forces."
"Let another thing be perfectly clear: the western media is misleading us and is trying to hide the interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign member of the UNO. Let us see some of the many comments from - and a presentation of several points raised by - our readers...
1. Why did the Libyan "revolution" not start in the capital, Tripoli, but rather in the separatist region of Cyrenaica?
2. Is it important that Cyrenaica is the oil-rich region?
3. How come the terrorists in Libya are referred to as "rebels" yet in other countries in the region they are "terrorists"?"From:http://english.pravda.ru/opinion/columnists/09-03-2011/117135-libya_media-0/
Sunday, March 27, 2011
OK, that's the dictionary definition, now read this:
"there is not enough oil left in the ground to create enough growth to pay off the global debt..."
"war is not a good business model if you end up dead..."
"The Monarchs have never lost touch with how good things can get..."
"the amount of insider selling in the stock market in the US last year has been 100 to 1..."
He talks of a coming (inevitable) market crash, and explains in pretty easy-to-understand language what exactly is happening with the global economy. Short version: unless you wake up pretty quickly and get out of the markets, get a farm and start to produce food for yourselves and stop thinking you'll get a pension, you'll be toast.
Note that Edison hired Tesla in the US to improve his designs, and swindled Tesla out of a promised financial reward. The rest, as they say, is history.
Here we note that it's origins are tied up with Thomas Edison, Tesla's rival in the energy wars. Allegedly Tesla invented free energy, but Edison didn't think this was such a good idea, as he could see the profits that could be made out of harnessing and selling units of energy to the general public. Tesla was interviewd by the FBI, his workshop was burned to the ground the next day, and he died years later in poverty. All of this way back in 1876:
Saturday, March 26, 2011
We also found out that not only did the CEO of BP sell over half of his shares just before the Gulf of Mexico oil blast and subsequent deadly 'spill', but that Goldman Sachs also shed a lot of their holdings in BP, whilst BP itself mysteriously bought up a huge clean-up operator, again just before the blow-out. A prominent BP critic and oil expert - Matt Simmons - wound up dead 'unexpectedly'.
Now we hear that the Fukushima Nuclear Power station is in fact owned, as are many others in Japan, by the huge American Corporation General Electric (GE) - head offices Rockerfeller Plaza, New York. The second largest corporation in the world, after JPMorgan Chase. We also learn that the Power Plant was due to be closed down today, due to it being old and dangerous, no doubt at great financial cost to its owners. Luckily it blew up, and is probably now an insurance job. Max Keiser calls it 'disaster capitalism'.
Little by little, those of us still capable of critical thinking have pieced together this narrative, and can see where it is all leading. Others flounder around in the more socially acceptable political paradigm of 'cock-up theory' as an explanation of current events. Good luck with that:
"we've moved from a print-based culture to an image-based culture"
"this determines how you communicate"
Here is a wonderful talk given to a small audience by the intelligent, thoughtful, articulate Chris Hedges, and despite the terrible sound quality, it is well worth the listen:
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
I'm going to burn my tin-foil hat soon...
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
And here, tragically, is her up-date on her house getting auctioned, even though she has seen NO papers showing proof:
Plus the Federal reserve may never get time to undertake further weakening of the dollar with its quantitative easing III, as the hounds are at the door, howling for more accountability:
Also, radiation in the sea:
I'd give up shellfish for a while if I were you.
Monday, March 21, 2011
Michael and Dimitri are both 'peak-oilists', and don't think Japan will ever be re-built. Quite a concept to get your head around, huh?
Sunday, March 20, 2011
However, he's unfortunately too stuck in the old paradigm as regards rebuilding economies and investing in infrastructure projects, without taking into consideration any of the implications of peak oil and/or energy use. Here he makes the unforgivable gaffe of saying that Japan should invest in new nuclear reactors......a jaw-dropping suggestion which possibly only he could make and get away with, without being laughed off of the international stage. We'll forgive him, as he's spot on with so much else, but for good advice for what to do for the future, stick with the Archdruid:
PS We offer courses!
And let there be no doubt, this was all planned and prepared many, many years ago, as verified here by a four-star General (who presumably only grew balls many years later):
The reality, and the truth with this beautiful song:
Saturday, March 19, 2011
He is now on record as saying he thinks the recent Japanese earthquake was triggered by HAARP, and that any patriotic American fighter pilots should bomb the facility in Alaska! See up-date here:
So far, so good. Now comes the intrigue: a while ago Max and his partner Stacy started talking about AGW (anthropomorphic global warming - i.e. we dunnit) and saying that it was cheap credit that was fuelling (excuse the pun) the destruction of the planet and the heating up of the atmosphere. I agree with the first assertion, but not the second, as do many others.
The pair will not entertain any negations of this theory, and to be fair it is their site, and they can say and do what they like, but unfortunately any intelligent attempts to disagree with their opinions get short shrift, even though they are not scientists. Commenters have pointed out that other planets in the solar system are also heating up, 'climategate' has revealed that many scientists have been inventing data, global geo-engineering experiements (to alter the climate) are real but ignored by the financial duo, and even though a fine representation of 'chemtrails' appears behind Max as a subliminal message all the time, he will not talk about it. Justifiable comments about HAARP, in trying to explain the AGW theory, are ignored or deleted.
Now add to this financial intrigue: Max has been advising everyone to buy silver as a way of bringing down one of the biggest banks, JPMorgan Chase, as they have more short positions than there is silver available, and apparently this action can make the bank unable to cover its position. No problem here, either: we have our kilo of silver, FWIW, and would love to bring down an obviously corrupt institution as much as the next man.
Here's where it gets murky: last year (2010) a story appeared about an ex Goldman Sachs employee (another one of the mega-banks run by a criminal cartel) named Andrew Maguire, saying he was about to expose the huge manipulation in the precious metals markets, letting everyone know it was a rigged game. A lot of us know this already, but any extra exposé for this group of criminals would be welcome. Before this AM could give his exposé at a London Conference he was apparently injured in a hit-and-run accident, had a gag-order placed on him and then disappeared.
Max and Stacy both say they had dinner with the mystery trader, and other financial pundits also confirm his existence (Bill Murphy, Paul Coghlan). A few other people in the know about the manipulation of the PM markets have now started to step up and say 'where is this guy/who is this guy/how do we know this is true, etc'. Here's one of the more eloquent doubters, called Rawdoglet:
Plus an engagingly enigmatic You Tuber called the Silverfuturist wades in:
Rather than it just being a case of a few minor disagreements about how to fight the massive corruption at the top of the pyramid (sic), this issue seems to expose a deeper agenda. Add to this the fact that many political and historical pundits are calling the North African 'revolutions' CIA coloured revolutions, while Max insists it's people power alone; add to this the fact that the fearless fighter will not go near the research of 911 by respected physicist Dr Judy Wood (comments are removed) and you end up having a real spider's web of truths, half-truths, information, misinformation and lies.
Finally, Max is keen on bringing down the dollar, and is backing a gold-backed (or at least PM-backed) currency. The trouble is, this is the same agenda as Alan Greenspan and other members of the criminal cabal, and seems to fit right in there with the oft-mentioned globalists goal of a global currency, in the form of IMF Special Drawing Rights or another World Bank-promoted basket of currencies.
So here is the question: is he one of the good guys, fighting the good fight, or is he working to a hidden agenda trying to bring in global governance by the back door, by crashing the existing global currency which is, of course, the dollar reserve? I can understand that the printing of digits on computer screens by the Fed and the Ben Bernank, (the so-called quantitative easing) is going to devalue everything, and cannot go on forever without imploding the system under a mountain of debt, but I cannot get a handle on Max's real agenda, and this Maguire story unfortunately just muddies the waters even further. Any further thoughts on this very welcome.
Friday, March 18, 2011
@2225 'this is an unsustainable system, and the inevitability of it's collapse has been there almost from the beginning'
PS The Federal Reserve has just given the green light to more bank dividends...
'To prepare responsibly, you should do it before a crisis hits, when there are plenty of goods, food, and other necessities available for purchase'.
Admittedly his article is written for an American audience, and in the two days since he wrote it, the stock market seems to be on the way up again. Nevertheless he thinks quantitative easing III is now inevitable, further devaluing the dollar and weakening the ponzi-scheme that is the global economy.
You may feel like a fool buying up all the tins of baked beans in Sainsbury's, but you might be grateful for them sooner than you think:
Thursday, March 17, 2011
One of the early promoters of the Tesla technology is John Hutchison, and here I accidentally came across the fact that he's selling his lab on e-bay!! Blimey, maybe someone put the mockers on him:
Also, here an interview with Paul A LaViolette, a physicist who contends here that free enrgy is possible, and that there is a lot more new technology which is kept under wraps:
Finally, Dr Judy Wood is proposing on her website that Directed Energy Weapons (using Tesla technology) are what brought down the twin towers. Don't dismiss it unless you've studied it, especially if you're not a scientist:
For the record, Michael Ruppert is still going today, with a film called 'Collapse' and a blog called 'Collapsenet.com', but had a very near brush with death in Venezuela, since which time he hardly talks about 911.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
In the West we have stopped being adults, we have reverted (or been reverted if you're a conspiracy theorist who has studied psychology) to childhood, where we don't want to hear bad news, where we only want to play games, amuse ourselves and follow mind-numbing 'entertainment' which includes chat-shows, sports and other inane material. Talk of what is happening politically is practically non-existant amongst the general public. By accident or design (and it hardly matters now which of these is true) discussions of where the energy is going to come from to power all of these non-essential services is never aired - or at least very, very rarely, and certainly not on main-stream television or radio.
This phrase 'energy illiteracy' popped into my head this morning, whilst I was re-picking my tomato seedlings. I now consider growing organic fruit and vegetables to be one of the most important jobs in the world, especially after the nuclear disaster in Japan. Consider all of the other jobs that have been created in the industrialised West, and you will see that most of them can just be blown away in the wind, and they will not matter when it comes to the survival of the human species. Consider, now, the rules and regulations designed to prevent people from having access to good, healthy food, and add to this the natural disasters that can happen unexpectedly and cut off your food and clean water supply, and you will begin to see that knowing how to feed yourself, and those around you, is possibly more important than rocket science.
Posted by benjamin
The earthquake and tsunami attack on Japan by the criminal corporate Washington D.C. cabal was meant to intimidate the people of the world into submission. Instead, it has provoked a threat by a very powerful group outside of the control of the White Dragon Society to “sink England, Italy and the United States into the ocean.” The White Dragon Society and its allies are appealing for calm and a negotiated solution before the planet earth is destroyed. High level negotiations aimed at accomplishing exactly this are now taking place in Tokyo and Osaka.
Oh, and by the way, the toxin - domoic acid - causes short-term memory loss, brain damage and sometimes death in humans:
However, there is a way to feed the world and save the environment:
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Monday, March 14, 2011
Meanwhile, for those who want to hear news that you will not hear on the BBC, here is this week's show:
Sunday, March 13, 2011
Maybe that's why walls resonate deeply with me.
They are not the solution.
Here is an e-mail received from a friend who is still in Nablus, teaching English with Project Hope. As you will see, he once worked on a Kibbutz, and wanted to go back there...
"I have tried. I have really tried, to understand Israel and the Israelis. I have tried to put myself in the shoes of people who want a home land. I have tried to feel what it must be like to want a peaceful life, but to live in fear of rockets and suicide bombers. I have tried to put myself in the position of someone whose country feels it is in a constant state of siege. It has not been easy.
Each time I try to understand, I cannot help but feel that I am in the wrong. I might want a homeland for myself, but I don’t think that that excuses me taking away someone elses homeland! And, when I think about my fear of someone else attacking me, I realize that those attacks would be legitimate attempts to fight back against what I or my nation, have done. I feel unable to justify injustice perpetrated by me or on my behalf, just because it suits my needs and whims.
Of course, I may not be a good example! After all, in my own country, I have tried to fight against injustice, inequality, racism, injustice and oppression (not that it got me very far!), so it’s probably inevitable that I would balk at what Israel has done. Maybe those of you out there who are less left or less political than myself can find good cause and understanding. I just can’t!
I am writing this after being escorted to the toilet by an armed security guard (more on this later). He took the opportunity to try to educate what he clearly presumed to be an ill-informed westerner, about the situation which Israel faces. First of all he told me how dangerous it was for me to have been in places like Syria because, if I got stabbed the ambulance would take half an hour to get to me, whilst in Israeli it would only take 10 minutes. The he said that what had happened in Egypt (the overthrow of Mubarek) was very bad because, soon, the Muslim Brotherhood would come to power. Israel is like a bubble of the west in the Middle East, he said (and so, presumably, we should like them). He warned me that we should not trust the Arabs. In Turkey, I was warned, the Muslims are playing a clever game, because they look as though they are being moderate, whilst the generals had been good because they kept the Mulims out of power. Hammas is clever, because they do things for the poor, but then, when they get to power, they are like Iran. The Americans, he told me, had supported the downfall of the Shah of Iran in 1979, and look where that got them – the Ayatollah. Now (clearly he meant foolishly), Obama supported the removal of Mubarek!
I don't know what will happen in these countries, now that they are throwing off the yoke of dictatorship: maybe the regimes will hang on with different faces (and Israel will be happy), or new bosses with new deals, or even extremist islamic groups, or, possibly something really representative of the people, but, what was very clear from this man (and, I believe he represented the dominant thinking in Israel and its government), is that it is not just the Palestinians whose oppression can be justified for the sake of Israeli security! He was clearly happy that oppression should happen all over the Middle East for their sake. There is no limit to which some people are prepared to go for their own sake (Ghadaffi is a case in point). And, as they are the people in the Middle East who actually have nuclear weapons, it’s quite scary. More to the point, in my view, it’s wrong!
Anyway, one of the ways in which I had hoped to reach, at least a less hostile attitude to Israel, was to go to the kibbutz which I had been to some 30 years ago. I doubt if I would have met any of the people who were there then, and it is even less likely that anybody would have remembered me, but I did think that seeing the place where I had had such a good time all that long ago, might remind me that there is something positive, something which can be salvaged from the abomination that is Israel in my mind (of course, I might have found myself in some terrible conversation which simply entrenched my feelings, but I didn’t want to think that!).
The Kibbutz was located just the other side of the wall from Tulkarem, only 20 minutes by servees from Nablus. The first time Jane and I tried to go it was raining heavily and the journey seemed to be more complicated and more costly than we had expected, so we turned back. Consider it a recce! The second time it was Shabbat and I didn’t think that we would have any problem visiting the Kibbutz, what I didn’t realize was that the checkpoint would be closed! The third time one of my classes was cancelled due to holidays and I made arrangements for another to be covered so that I could go on my own.
A Terminal Experience:
The checkpoint at Tulkarem is not like the ones you come across within the West Bank. They are usually where the road is subdivided into lanes, each guarded by one or more guard post. The lanes can be blocked and vehicles can be stopped, but, mostly, these days, you can drive through under the watchful eye of an armed soldier or two. The Tulkarem checkpoint is a gate through the apartheid wall and is more like Qalandiya or Bethlehem, which give access to Jerusalem, only more so! High metal fencing channels people, cattle-like to a bank of football-style turnstiles. They are electronically controlled, with red or green lights to indicate if they are open. Unfortunately, when I arrive, they are all on red, there are Palestinians already waiting. Nobody tell you anything – you just wait patiently for the lights to change. We wait maybe twenty minutes: I am in a good mood and just take things in. I take some photos of normal Palestinian life for the folks back home.
When the lights do change I am fortunate enough to be one of the dozen or so who are able to get through. I have entered what they euphemistically call the terminal. There are no signs of welcome or direction as far as I can see, just exhortations to ‘Keep the terminal clean’, so I just follow the others. There is, however, a loud voice booming over the tannoy, presumably telling people what to do – a contrast to the silence while we have been stood waiting. We walk up corridors through 3 electric gates, one after another. Each one is also on red, fortunately we do not have to wait long, but there is no way of knowing. Then comes the normal airport terminal stuff.
There is an x-ray machine which you put your bags and stuff through, and there is a walk through metal detector, there is also a security woman who tannoys excruciatingly loud instructions from behind armoured glass. She doesn’t like my bag: she tells me to put it through the ‘makina’ another 3 or 4 times; then I have to take everything out of the bag and show her and send it all back through the ‘makina’. She likes the camera even less: I have to take it out the bag and send them through together; then I have to do it again, but placed differently; then I have to do it again; then I have to take the batteries out. It’s Jane’s camera which I am using especially for the visit – I can’t open the batteries! I have to have help from a Palestinian. I put it through again, but she’s still not satisfied; I have to put camera and batteries on a plastic tray at least three times before she is satisfied. All this time the other Palestinians who were with me have had to wait (as well as those outside!). All the Palestinian men travel light, with no bags and only necessary hand held things like phone, money, ID and essential documents; they also take off their belts. I want to tell them that I am sorry for delaying them and for not knowing the ropes – I nod apologetically, but I am too embarrassed to try Arabic. At last I can go!
Through another electronically controlled turnstile, to another airport terminal thing! This time the xray makina is accompanied by a more sophisticated scanner and more tannoyed shouts from behind armoured glass. The Palestinian who helped me with my batteries tells me what to do. I take my belt off and everything is on the machine apart from my ring, necklace and watch. I stand feet apart on orange foot prints with arms raised (as in surrender); the makina closes and scans me; then I have to turn side-on and stand on the pink foot prints and surrender to the makina. The tannoy woman behind the glass doesn’t like my camera, nor does her friend – they want it. My Palestinian friend places it for them in a separate secure side-room. They want to know what I have been taking photos of: “Our travels.” “Have you taken any pictures here?” “Yes, when I was waiting to come in.” Two things occur to me: one that they have cameras watching all over, and probably saw me taking pictures and they didn’t like it; and, two, that they are scanning our pictures and probably copying them. What I don’t remember is that many of the other photos are of Palestinians – maybe they will cross-check them later. Eventually I am allowed through; fortunately, while I have been waiting the Palestinian have been allowed past. I am allowed past, but they are not finished with me yet – there is still the ID check.
One of the advantages of being a foreigner is that you usually get preferential treatment – at Bethlehem and Qalandiya you get passed through with barely a glance (Bethlehem even has an express tourist gate), whereas the Palestinian ID is carefully scrutinized. Here, as well as their ID and a sheaf of accompanying documents, the Palestinians had to provide an electronic hand print, nonetheless they got through quicker than I! I am asked the purpose of my visit and what I was doing in Tulkarem; when I tell them I wasn’t in Tulkarem, but Nablus they want to know why. I tell them Jane and I were staying with friends we’d met in Jerusalem. They ask me to wait then call me back for more questions; this happens several times: “What have you been doing in Israel?”, “How did you get to Nablus?”, “What checkpoint?”, “What were you doing inSyria?”, “Where were you staying inNablus?”, “”What is the address?”, “Who have you been staying with?”, “What are their phone numbers?”, “Why do you want to go to Israel?”, “Do you know anybody on the kibbutz?”, “Where is the kibbutz?”, “Why DO you want to go to the kibbutz?”, “Did your friends give you anything to take to the kibbutz?”, “What do they do?” They ask for and get mine and Jane’s phone numbers and my email and they want information about who I say we have been staying with and all details about them – I am not very forthcoming on this, but give them some basics. After maybe half an hour of this toing and froing they tell me that tourists are not supposed to use this check-point. I said that I didn’t know that. Later I ask how I am supposed to know that and she tells me frankly that you don’t! Eventually she says that she is going to see if she can get permission for me to go through, and leaves her cubical. It is now 3 hours since I first arrived at the ‘terminal’!
It is while I was waiting between questions that I noticed the guy with the guns. They are not IDF (or Israeli Offence Force as the Palestinians call them) but private security firms which man the terminals and sometimes the checkpoints (one of my escorts told me he had come from Nigeria to find work: the political fall out if one of these dies is not as great as if an Israeli soldier dies) . They are prowling on gantry walkways which criss-cross above our head. (When I get home, my landlord tells me that he had got a permit to enable him to go to Tel Avi for his business. He was in the hands-in-the-air-legs-apart-makina and had a cigarette packet in his pocket which was detected by the machine. The next thing he knew was a red laser dot tracing up his front to his forehead and his being told that if he make a wrong move he will be shot. He was directed to a bombproof room with no roof, where he had to strip before being scanned and let go. He said that his permit is still valid for a few days, but he is too frightened to go back just now and will have to apply for another permit.) While I am waiting one of them keeps his beady eye on me and one has to escort me when I need to use the toilet.
While I am waiting a steady stream of Palestinians passes through, mostly, now, heading back from Israel. Many are people who go o Israel to work, though that is discouraged in Israel nowadays, many of them are carrying sacks of oranges on their back. I am reminded of the line of lorries which was queueing at another gate, while we were waiting to enter, and wonder how long they have to wait for. There are Palestinians who go back and to through this checkpoint every day.
Several hours of waiting later I have concluded that they are not discussing whether to let me through a non-tourist checkpoint. I begin to wonder if they are going to deport me. They don’t like the fact that we went to Syria, they don’t like the fact that I was in the West Bank, and they definitely didn’t like me taking the photos. Maybe they are taking so long because they are making arrangements to deport me? Why did they want our phone numbers and my email – what will they do with them? If they are planning to deport me then I have nothing to lose in telling them that I’ve been working for Project Hope, engaged in the treasonous activity of teaching English! At least I’ve had a good innings!
She returns with an armed escort (I am clearly potential dangerous) and tells me that I have to speak over the phone to the security services. More question, about Syria, about where exactly in England we are from, our jobs etc, over and over again. Eventually I tell him that I am teaching at Project Hope. He wants names. Apart from the manager and our landlord, I refuse.
I arrived at 11.20am, I am refused entry six and a half hours later, at 5.50pm. It would have been too late to get to the kibbutz and back by then, anyway, but for some strange reason, the desire to go had somehow ebbed away. I went to the Kibbutz, 30 years ago, ignorant of the real situation, now I am not. I am no longer willing to make the effort to get there (via Jerusalem this time) and I no longer have any belief that my feelings towards Israel can be redeemed. – well done Israel!!!"
This is the sort of on-the-ground information which needs to be spread far and wide, in order that we understand what is happening in that part of the world. Treating other human beings like cattle, or worse, is not going to bring about peace. And I think one party in this 'conflict' knows that full well...
Also, this blogger mentions that when he lost funding for his website, Anonymous stepped in and pay for his site:
What is missing, however, is balance: unarmed Palestinian children get shot and killed every day by the IDF, and it doesn't make the news (see my blog entry 'Justice will be done'). The situation in Palestine is untenable, and I have been there and seen it for myself. It is a law of physics that if you squeeze something too much, it pops.
Thursday, March 10, 2011
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Anyway Charlie of the Love Police is trying to get a movement going in the UK where people stop paying their mortgages, stop paying credit cards bills, taxes, etc. All of this as a non-violent protest movement to show that we do not agree with what is happening in the world - violence and wars funded by banks, for bankers. Good luck with that Charlie, as my recent UK trip showed me that most British people are still completely asleep when it comes to the economic reality of the country:
Also, this blog from a Canadian who is sick of the violence he saw at the G20 protests in Toronto, who is also encouraging non-violent civil disobedience:
He says 'we are on the cusp on something huge'.........and I agree with him! Now is the time, this is the moment!
Here's his blog:
And here is a half-hour presentation summing it all up for us, in his usual dead-pan style:
PS He lives on a boat!
The public take over a Court in the UK:
Understanding where we are today is about understanding several things: energy; consumption; resources; politics and psychology, amoungst other things. He got it right back then, and those of us who listened and read his work are much better prepared than most to face the on-coming storm. I feel sorry for those people who are going to get caught up in the storm through no fault of their own, but to all of those who have been willfully living beyond their means and being profligate with the planet's resources - well, you had it coming, and it's coming.
Put simply, it is not/was not possible to live the Western lifestyle for more than a few decades, and without any people in positions of authority who have spines, guts and determination, we were always heading for this moment. Unfortunately, it is a truism that those people who should be in politics are not, whilst those who seek power, fame and fortune rise to the top and fight to the death to try to stay there.
Here is Michael's latest podcast, on a weekly show with the Progressive Radio Network, where he sets out where we're at:
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
I don’t teach in the refugee camps but I do teach the teachers in the UNWRA schools, designated specifically for the children of the refugee camps. In the same way that the camps housing 23 thousand displaced people are a means of ghettoizing people, so is their schooling. The teachers that I teach are dedicated, thoughtful and well educated people, they on the whole earn slightly less than state teachers and the social problems they deal with daily are vast. A survey undertaken by the headmaster showed that 80% of the mothers had never been schooled above the age of eleven and their level of literacy was very poor. The camps were first set up as tents in 1948 but subsequent refugees have joined over the next 20 years (of course a large number in and around 1967) thus the parents of most of the students will themselves have been born into the camps.
The problems they experience relate of course to the behavioral problems of the kids. All my classes have been conversation and because I, and they, are interested in education, I have centred the classes around their experiences. They say that childrens behavior has become worse over the last 5 years and they cite this being to do with the intifada of 2001. They say the children have lost their belief in the future, in their belief that adults can keep them safe and in their need to support their families financially. The children try to make money by working selling on the streets, this is not considered to be a good place to instill good values into the children. Additionally the camps have a higher than normal number of men in prison both by the Israelis and the PA. The families that live in the camps do not have the wide support of a historical base of extended family that other families in Palestine have. In one of the villages we picked olives in, one family amounted to 1000 people all contributing to the collective family pot. The level of unemployment in Palestine is very high and in the camps even higher. Many of the families are dependant on food hand outs from the UN.
The teachers have a very low opinion of the UN. The aid they provide is very minimalist yet at the same time very coercive. There remains the belief that the UN does nothing to help or support the refugees other than a bit of food and very limited health provision. We visited Dheisha Camp near Bethlehem over the weekend (2nd in size to Balata which is the biggest in Palestine) which has only one doctor to 13,000 people and classes of 60 to each class. To be fair, the school I work in, has an average class size that has recently reduced to 25, but in Balata some classes have to share teachers!
Our guide at Dheisha was late because the Israelis had arrived at 2am looking for a young man that they wanted to question. All of the camps have visits at 2 or 3am from the Israeli soldiers, sometimes just for training manouvers. Even when infrastructure is damaged by their vehicles the UN make no complaint, and are slow to make repairs due to lack of funds.
Now away from refugee camps and on to settlements! Last weekend as I mentioned we went to Bethlehem. When we had been there last time we hadn’t seen any of the town, we had just stayed at the hostel near the Dheisha camp while we went to the Open (Closed) Minds Conference. So with the idea, for me at least, of being tourists and not too political we first had a trip around the camp and then went into the town to do the tourist bit. It is a lovely town, lots of money used to make it pretty for the tourists (the vast majority of whom come by coach from Israel and return without spending much money or time in the West Bank), a lovely market and just to show how small this place is we met a friend from the EAPPI outside the Church of Nativity.
Before we came to Palestine we had contacted an organization called Tent of Nations which is an organic farm project which operates in a similar way to an open farm with youngsters visiting and internationals working with them. We had not heard from them and had subsequently found Project Hope, but as we were in the area we decided to visit them. We were met by the son of the family and taken around by him. Am I glad we did not go there! The farm is on top of a hill, surrounded by settlements on all the hills around, big built up towns, ugly in their western architecture, totally out of keeping with the terraced landscape of a dessert hilly landscape. I have attached some photos that can explain this better. The settlers always build on hills, therefore the farm has been constantly under attack for the last thirty years. They have had countless demolition orders but due to the foresight of the great grandfather of our guide, they have proof of ownership from the ottomans, the British and the Jordanians, thus this has made life difficult for the Israeli government in taking their land. It has nevertheless meant numerous court appearances, huge amounts of legal expenses and restrictions on building, on getting electricity or water to the farm and on developing their educational projects. The owners are Christian (as are many of the Palestinians in and around Bethlehem) and their aim is to recruit volunteers from the three main religions of the region to work together to share ideas and build friendships.
Having become pretty despondent about the fate of Palestinians, probably also affected by the welcome though far from final peace in Egypt (800 deaths in one day) and far more horrendous upheaval in Libya I was not wanting to hear more bad news on our weekend away, but it just shows how total the horror the occupation and constant pressure the people have to live under really is. My feelings of depression is just a blip, after all I can and am leaving, no wonder many people just try to put their head down and deal with their life on a day to day basis ducking the awful reality of other peoples lives and the wider picture of a horrendously hopeless future.
On a much lighter note. We took about 80 kids to see Alice in Wonderland at the Freedom theatre in Jenin, and I attach some photos. The kids were from two of the refugee camps in Nablus, the orphanage I work in and a local village. It was a great trip not that I understood a wood of the play cos obviously it was in Arabic.
The red anemonies are all over, like poppies in England they are considered to the drops of blood from the Palestinian dead. The garden is where one of my students/friends lives at whose house we went to lunch.
Plus I have been working with one of my womens classes to do a presentation about International Womans day tomorrow (now today) and just got a call to say no class because all women to get the day off.Yes!!!!!!!!!! Our class will happen next week instead!Well it is possible I won’t again write before we leave this much beleaguered land. It will be a big wrench to leave, but I am ready and excited about our next adventure.