Réalité EU: Front group for the Washington based Israel Project?

A Spinwatch Investigation: by Tom Mills and David Miller, 30 October 2009

Realite EU - Not actually based in the EU at all

Spinwatch has uncovered evidence that an apparently London based organisation offering expertise on Iran to journalists and politicians is a covert propaganda operation run by a pro-Israel organisation in the United States.

The organisation, which is called Réalité-EU, has direct connections to the Israel Project, a hardline pro Israel organisation based in Washington DC. Both Réalité-EU and the Israel Project also appear to be connected to a Jewish organisation – B’nai B’rith International, which is also active in pro Israel campaigning

Réalité-EU was at one time linked to the former Shadow Security Minister Patrick Mercer, raising further concerns about the Conservative MP’s links to individuals and groups involved in exaggerating and even fabricating domestic and international threats for personal and political ends. These activities have previously been reported by Spinwatch as well as other sources.

Réalité-EU has claimed to be based at offices in London, but e-mails received from the organisation were sent from a mail server registered to the Washington offices of B’nai B’rith International.[1] An expert from Réalité-EU who spoke to Spinwatch denied ‘any connection whatsoever’ with B’nai B’rith

Asked whether Réalité-EU receives any funding or direct support from the pro-Israel pressure group, the expert replied, ‘Definitely not,’ but added, ‘I’m not at all involved in any development [i.e. funding] questions so I really don’t know exactly who the individuals are and where they come from.’[2]

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Hearts, Minds, and Dollars

POLITICS: U.S. in Pakistan’s Mind: Nothing But Aversion

Analysis by Muhammad Idrees Ahmad

With Nato supply convoys passing through the FATA region, US military hardware frequently falls into the hands of insurgents.

PESHAWAR, Pakistan, Oct 30 (IPS) – To the west of Peshawar on the Jamrud Road that leads to the historic Khyber Pass sits the Karkhano Market, a series of shopping plazas whose usual offering of contraband is now supplemented by standard issue U.S. military equipment, including combat fatigues, night vision goggles, body armour and army knives.

Beyond the market is a checkpoint, which separates the city from the semi-autonomous tribal region of Khyber. In the past, if one lingered near the barrier long enough, one was usually approached by someone from the far side selling hashish, alcohol, guns, or even rocket-propelled grenade launchers. These days such salesman could also be selling U.S. semi-automatics, sniper rifles and hand guns. Those who buy do it less for their quality—the AK-47 still remains the weapon of choice here—than as mementos of a dying Empire.

The realisation may be dawning slowly on some U.S. allies, but here everyone is convinced that Western forces have lost the war. However, at a time when in Afghanistan the efficacy of force as a counterinsurgency tool is being increasingly questioned, there is a newfound affinity for it in Pakistan.

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Saree Makdisi on the Goldstone Report

Saree Makdisi
Saree Makdisi

Phillip Adams speaks to the nephew of the late Edward Said, Professor Saree Makdisi, who will give the 2009 Edward Said Memorial Lecture in Adelaide. Professor Makdisi talks about the latest UN findings of war crimes in Gaza; what he describes as the bureaucratic occupation of the Palestinian territories; and his reasons for supporting a one-state solution. (thanks Michael)

Makdisi is Professor of English Literature at the University of California, Los Angeles; Edward Said Memorial Lecturer for 2009, and the author of Palestine Inside Out: Everyday Occupation (John Wiley, 2008)

See also
A Museum of Intolerance in Jerusalem for an excellent address by Saree Makdisi on the so-called Museum of Tolerance in Jerusalem.

Smoke and Mirrors – On the Hardships of Self-Inquiry

Looking in the mirror is no easy task. Especially when your eyes are smoked by Zionism. Now that impunity is slowly diminishing, Israel finds itself stuck between the Goldstone and a hard place. How does the spoiled brat of the Middle East deal with the fact that years of stealing cookies from the cookie jar have left its face covered in damning chocolate?

Common Sense Solutions to Self-Inquiry

For weeks now, the Goldstone report has gained its rightful place in the Israeli mainstream media- the front page. At first, articles were all about the “one-sidedness” and the “antesemitism” of the report. Now, what we’re seeing is a consistent media push for self-inquiry. Not because we have some ethical ‘splaining to do, mind you, but because Israel’s public image is in jeopardy. Ha’aretz’s diplomatic correspondent (and a fellow at the Israeli Institute For National Security Studies), Aluf Benn- a shining example of this “practical strategic thinking”- finally remembers to ask some tough questions:

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From Guantanamo to Honduras: Psychological Wars Then and Now

embajada
Honduran military surrounds Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa. (Photo: AFP)

By Joseph Shansky

Recently, musicians such as Rage Against the Machine, Steve Earle and Pearl Jam joined the newly-formed National Campaign to Close Guantanamo Bay.  It’s a public effort to protest the past misuse of recordings during “enhanced interrogation techniques” at Guantanamo prison.  An exaggerated volume and incessant repetition of loud music are just a few auditory torture techniques famously used by the American government overseas to disorient prisoners. 

However, the issue of psychological warfare should not only be seen in a past context.  Since these revelations, the question of its continued use in other parts of the world deserves exposure.

One timely example is Honduras.  In June of this year, President Manuel Zelaya was violently removed from power in a military coup d’état and replaced with a non-elected government, led by former National Congress leader Roberto Micheletti.  Since his return to Honduras September 21, President Zelaya has been residing with supporters in the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa, with Honduran armed forces stationed outside.

Following orders by coup government officials, the army has been frequently directing harsh noises at the embassy occupants.  The most recent example took place early in the morning of October 21, when the broadcast included military anthems, rock music, and animal noises (pig grunts, in an apparent attempt to add insult to injury) at an excessive volume, and on a constant loop from around 1:30 am to 7 am. 

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Indigenous Youth Delegation to Palestine


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Once again, the wonderful Laura Flanders:

Ora Wise of the Palestine Education Project, Ras K’Dee of SNAG Magazine, and hip-hop activists Invincible of Detroit and the Narcicyst join us in the studio to talk about their experiences organizing across borders, creating solidarity between communities of struggle, and being part of a new generation of activists forming their own connections.

The Supreme Crime Against Satire

Ah, Tony Blair…. inheritor and champion of Thatcherite neo-liberal economics and Zionist neo-conservative foreign policy, presidor over a dramatic rise in British Islamophobia, appointer of unelected Zionist tycoons to manage the good behaviour of the Palestinians while they lose the last of their land and rights, holy liar, war criminal, hypocrite, a man complicit in the Gaza massacre, and in the 2006 assault on Lebanon’s civilian infrastructure … and soon, perhaps, first president of the European Union. I’ve written about this lovely chap before. Those of you who believe the appointment of Blair to the EU presidency would be the worst possible start to the post and a sure sign to the rest of the world that Europe has no interest in justice or good governance, can sign this petition. I certainly have. On the other hand, some of you may agree with George Monbiot’s provocative argument that Blair’s appointment to the post will provide the best opportunity for having him tried for war crimes. So far, Blair has only been rewarded for his crimes, with directorships, a book deal, and the joke post of ‘Middle East peace envoy’, which Monbiot calls “the supreme crime against satire.”

Monbiot’s article is here:

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C. Wright Mills Reconsidered

C. Wright Mills
C. Wright Mills

C. S. Soong’s Against the Grain is always thought provoking. Also check out this article on Mills’s enduring influence, and this obituary by Ralph Miliband from the New Left Review‘s May 1962 issue. (thanks Carlos)

Download program audio (mp3, 48.6 Mbytes)

C. Wright Mills liked to think big. His analyses of power elites, white collar workplaces, the Cuban Revolution, and potential sources of radical social transformation were influential with thinkers, activists, and concerned citizens in many parts of the globe. Daniel Geary describes Mills’s ideas and their impact on a number of social movements, especially the New Left.

Leaving Waziristan

A force of 28,000 Pakistani army personnel is at the moment conducting an operation in South Waziristan. The operation was preceded by months of aerial bombing, and as the following Al Jazeera reports show the human cost in terms of lives lost, and displacement is high. A BBC crew earlier found the refugees so outraged with the Pakistani military’s operation that they were chanting slogans in support of Hakimullah Mehsud, the new leader of the Pakistani Taliban, and Maulvi Faqir Muhammad and other TTP leaders.

Thousands flee Pakistan conflict – 22 Oct 09

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