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Saudi Arabia - King Salman's CENTCOM client dictatorship
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2016 12:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

'Boris Johnson defends UK arms sales to Saudi Arabia':
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/sep/05/mps-to-urge-ban-on-uk-ar ms-sales-to-saudi-arabia

'The British foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, has defended UK arms sales to Saudi Arabia, saying the Saudi-led bombing campaign in Yemen is not “in clear breach” of international humanitarian law.

This week MPs will decide whether to call for a ban on arms sales to Saudi in light of allegations of indiscriminate bombing by the Saudi-led coalition during the 18-month-old Yemen civil war.
Greater transparency around the arms trade would save countless lives
Anna Macdonald
Read more

In a written statement to parliament, Johnson says: “The key test for our continued arms exports to Saudi Arabia in relation to international humanitarian law is whether those weapons might be used in a commission of a serious breach of international humanitarian law. Having regard to all the information available to us, we assess this test has not been met.”

His judgment is based largely on an Saudi-led inquiry into eight controversial incidents, including the bombing of hospitals. The report, published on 4 August, largely defended the bombing runs on the basis that the Saudis had received credible intelligence that enemy Houthi forces were in the area. In one case it offered compensation to the victims.

Defending the credibility of a Saudi-led inquiry exonerating Saudi targeting, Johnson said: “They have the best insight into their own procedures and will be able to conduct the most thorough and conclusive investigations. It will also allow the coalition forces to work out what went wrong and apply the lessons learned in the best possible way. This is the standard we set ourselves and our allies.”

The Johnson statement clarifies the UK position after ministers were forced to retract some statements asserting unequivocally that there had been no breaches of international humanitarian law by the Saudis in Yemen.

Subsequent to the Saudi inquiry report, Saudi airstrikes on 15 August left 19 killed and 24 injured when a raid hit a Yemeni hospital supported by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). It was the fourth attack on an MSF facility in Yemen in a year, and led to the MSF withdrawing from parts of Yemen. MSF said it it had shared the hospital’s GPS coordinates with all parties involved in the conflict

A meeting by the Commons committee of arms export controls on Wednesday will see a cross-party push for the UK to suspend its multibillion-pound arms sales to Saudi Arabia. Such a move would infuriate Riyadh, unnerve arms manufacturers and embarrass the Conservative government.

On 25 August the United Nations’ top human rights official, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, called for an international independent inquiry into the Saudi air campaign. A UN report said 60% of the civilian deaths documented in a one-year period had resulted from airstrikes carried out by the Saudi-led coalition on weddings, markets, schools and hospitals. In several of those attacks, the UN said it was unable to identify any possible military target.
'Why do they target us?' Yemeni civilians pay the price of escalating crisis
Read more

The UK government has previously said it was not against an international inquiry, but favoured a Saudi-led inquiry.......'

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the first time, Saudi Arabia is being attacked by both Sunni and Shia leaders
What, the Saudis must be asking themselves, has happened to the fawning leaders who would normally grovel to the Kingdom?
Robert Fisk @indyvoices Thursday 22 September 2016
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/saudi-arabia-attacked-sunni-shia-l eaders-wahhabism-chechenya-robert-fisk-a7322716.html

The Saudis step deeper into trouble almost by the week. Swamped in their ridiculous war in Yemen, they are now reeling from an extraordinary statement issued by around two hundred Sunni Muslim clerics who effectively referred to the Wahhabi belief – practiced in Saudi Arabia – as “a dangerous deformation” of Sunni Islam. The prelates included Egypt’s Grand Imam, Ahmed el-Tayeb of al-Azhar, the most important centre of theological study in the Islamic world, who only a year ago attacked “corrupt interpretations” of religious texts and who has now signed up to “a return to the schools of great knowledge” outside Saudi Arabia.

This remarkable meeting took place in Grozny and was unaccountably ignored by almost every media in the world – except for the former senior associate at St Antony’s College, Sharmine Narwani, and Le Monde’s Benjamin Barthe – but it may prove to be even more dramatic than the terror of Syria’s civil war. For the statement, obviously approved by Vladimir Putin, is as close as Sunni clerics have got to excommunicating the Saudis.

Although they did not mention the Kingdom by name, the declaration was a stunning affront to a country which spends millions of dollars every year on thousands of Wahhabi mosques, schools and clerics around the world.

Wahhabism’s most dangerous deviation, in the eyes of the Sunnis who met in Chechenya, is that it sanctions violence against non-believers, including Muslims who reject Wahhabi interpretation. Isis, al-Qaeda and the Taliban are the principal foreign adherents to this creed outside Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

The Saudis, needless to say, repeatedly insist that they are against all terrorism. Their reaction to the Grozny declaration has been astonishing. “The world is getting ready to burn us,” Adil Al-Kalbani announced. And as Imam of the King Khaled Bin Abdulaziz mosque in the Saudi capital of Riyadh, he should know.

As Narwani points out, the bad news kept on coming. At the start of the five-day Hajj pilgrimage, the Lebanese daily al-Akhbar published online a database which it said came from the Saudi ministry of health, claiming that up 90,000 pilgrims from around the world have died visiting the Hajj capital of Mecca over a 14-year period. Although this figure is officially denied, it is believed in Shia Muslim Iran, which has lost hundreds of its citizens on the Hajj. Among them was Ghazanfar Roknabadi, a former ambassador and intelligence officer in Lebanon. Iran’s supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, has just launched an unprecedented attack on the Saudis, accusing them of murder. “The heartless and murderous Saudis locked up the injured with the dead in containers...” he said in his own Hajj message.

A Saudi official said Khameni’s accusations reflected a “new low”. Abdulmohsen Alyas, the Saudi undersecretary for international communications, said they were “unfounded, but also timed to only serve their unethical failing propaganda”.

Yet the Iranians have boycotted the Hajj this year (not surprisingly, one might add) after claiming that they have not received Saudi assurances of basic security for pilgrims. According to Khamenei, Saudi rulers “have plunged the world of Islam into civil wars”.

However exaggerated his words, one thing is clear: for the first time, ever, the Saudis have been assaulted by both Sunni and Shia leaders at almost the same time.

The presence in Grozny of Grand Imam al-Tayeb of Egypt was particularly infuriating for the Saudis who have poured millions of dollars into the Egyptian economy since Brigadier-General-President al-Sissi staged his doleful military coup more than three years ago.

What, the Saudis must be asking themselves, has happened to the fawning leaders who would normally grovel to the Kingdom?

Footage shows extent of child malnutrition in Yemen as Britain continues to sell arms to Saudi Arabia
“In 2010, Saudi Arabia was crossing borders peacefully as a power-broker, working with Iran, Syria, Turkey, Qatar and others to troubleshoot in regional hotspots,” Narwani writes. “By 2016, it had buried two kings, shrugged off a measured approach to foreign policy, embraced ‘takfiri’ madness and emptied its coffers.” A “takfiri” is a Sunni who accuses another Muslim (or Christian or Jew) of apostasy.

Kuwait, Libya, Jordan and Sudan were present in Grozny, along with – you guessed it – Ahmed Hassoun, the grand mufti of Syria and a loyal Assad man. Intriguingly, Abu Dhabi played no official role, although its policy of “deradicalisation” is well known throughout the Arab world.


But there are close links between President (and dictator) Ramzan Kadyrov of Chechenya, the official host of the recent conference, and Mohamed Ben Zayed al-Nahyan, the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince. The conference itself was opened by Putin, which shows what he thinks of the Saudis – although, typically, none of the Sunni delegates asked him to stop bombing Syria. But since the very meeting occurred against the backcloth of Isis and its possible defeat, they wouldn’t, would they?

That Chechenya, a country of monstrous bloodletting by Russia and its own Wahhabi rebels, should have been chosen as a venue for such a remarkable conclave was an irony which could not have been lost on the delegates. But the real questions they were discussing must have been equally apparent.

Who are the real representatives of Sunni Muslims if the Saudis are to be shoved aside? And what is the future of Saudi Arabia? Of such questions are revolutions made.

http://www.presstv.com/Detail/2016/12/06/496661/UK-Brexit-
http://www.presstv.com/program/20161205/1205_onl.mp4
http://217.218.67.233/program/20161205/1205_onl.mp4

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 08, 2016 10:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Boris Johnson caught on video accusing ally Saudi Arabia of ‘playing proxy wars’ and twisting and abusing Islam
'You've got the Saudis, Iran, everybody, moving in and puppeteering and playing proxy wars'
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/boris-johnson-saudi-arab ia-proxy-wars-twisting-abusing-islam-a7462516.html

A video has emerged of Boris Johnson disparaging the role in the Middle East of Britain’s ally Saudi Arabia, accusing the nation of “playing proxy wars” and abusing Islam for political ends.

The Foreign Secretary was very positive about Saudi-UK relations during an appearance on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show on Sunday morning.

But speaking just a few days earlier at a conference in Rome, Mr Johnson said Saudi Arabia and Iran were “moving in and puppeteering” in neighbouring states.

The video from the Med 2 event, published by The Guardian, shows Mr Johnson agreeing with Arab League secretary-general Ahmed Aboul Gheit, who said: “The issue is [countries] using religion as an instrument of politics. That should not be.”

Its release came as Prime Minister Theresa May arrived back from a visit to the Gulf where she attended a dinner with the leaders of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman.

In the video, Mr Johnson can be seen saying: “There are politicians who are twisting and abusing religion and different strains of the same religion in order to further their own political objectives. That's one of the biggest political problems in the whole region.

“And the tragedy for me - and that's why you have these proxy wars being fought the whole time in that area - is that there is not strong enough leadership in the countries themselves.”

The Foreign Secretary said there were not enough "big characters" in the region who were willing to "reach out beyond their Sunni or Shia" group.

He told the conference: "That's why you've got the Saudis, Iran, everybody, moving in and puppeteering and playing proxy wars."

Mr Johnson spoke positively about the role leaders in Cyprus were playing in bringing the Turkish and Greek communities of that island together, adding: “I see that in Cyprus and I have to tell you, I don’t see it anywhere else in the region.”

“We need to have some way of encouraging visionary leadership in that area. People who can tell a story that brings people together from different factions and different religious groups into one nation. That’s what is missing.”

Such comments break the longstanding convention among British ministers not to criticise the conduct of key Gulf state allies.

The UK arms industry relies heavily on exports to the region, which also hosts a number of key British military bases.

And Mr Johnson is himself due to visit the region again this weekend, and faces the prospect of having to defend his statements about Islam in particular.

A Foreign Office spokesman said: "As the Foreign Secretary made very clear [to Marr] on Sunday, we are allies with Saudi Arabia and support them in their efforts to secure their borders and protect their people. Any suggestion to the contrary is wrong and misinterpreting the facts."

Speaking ahead of her Middle East visit, Ms May said earlier this week that human rights abuses by Gulf states shouldn't affect British trade policy.

She said: “No doubt there will be some people in the UK who say we shouldn't seek stronger trade and security ties with these countries because of their record on human rights.

“But we don't uphold our values and human rights by turning our back on this issue. We achieve far more by stepping up, engaging with these countries and working with them to encourage and support their plans for reform.

“That is how Britain can be a force for good in the world as well as helping to keep our people safe and create new opportunities for business.”

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2016 6:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

UK 'secretly selling arms to Saudi Arabia and elsewhere under opaque licencing system'

Campaigners say licensing system designed for ‘less sensitive’ trade deals is being abused
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/uk-arm-trade-exports-sa udi-arabia-yemen-airstrikes-open-individual-export-licence-a7481136.ht ml

Will Worley @willrworley 7 hours ago55 comments

UK arms are being used by the Saudis in Yemen, such as in this funeral ceremony in Sanaía EPA
The UK is secretly selling arms to Saudi Arabia and other countries under an opaque type of export licence, it has been reported.

The military and defence industry is a major player in the UK economy, worth about £7.7bn a year.

But many of the countries buying British arms are run by governments with dubious human rights records, even though the destinations of such exports are supposed to meet human rights standards.



READ MORE
UK arms exports to Saudi Arabia ‘must end now’
Now, according to the i newspaper, an increasing number of military consignments are being sold under the Open Individual Export Licence (OIEL) after quiet Government encouragement in 2015, despite criticism from MPs.

Under the OIEL licences, numerous consignments can be exported to one destination under a single licence for up to five years after initial scrutiny. They are supposed to be “less sensitive goods” but campaigners say this vague requirement is often flouted.

Furthermore, the value of OIEL licenced goods does not need to be publicly declared, meaning it is difficult to determine their volume, though it is estimated to be in the tens of millions.

For instance, using just 32 OIEL licences, 150 different types of defence and military goods – including technology and parts for fighter aircraft – have been exported to Saudi Arabia, the newspaper reported.

World news in pictures
35
show all
Saudi Arabia has been widely condemned for its role in the Yemeni conflict, where its airstrikes have been blamed for large numbers of civilian deaths.

READ MORE
UK signed off £3.3bn arms exports to Saudi Arabia in last year
UK urged to stop arms exports to Saudi Arabia after Netherlands ban
Yemen's Prime Minister accuses UK of war crimes
Johnson says Saudi Arabia has not crossed threshold by bombing Yemen
Other British goods that have been exported around the world under OIEL licences reportedly include rifles, crowd control weapons and helicopters.

While proponents say OIEL licences help efficiency and cut red tape, opponents say they allow inappropriate sales to go through.

Andrew Smith, of Campaign Against the Arms Trade, which obtained the data, said: “Open licences only exacerbate the lack of transparency in the arms trade. UK arms are playing a central role in the devastation of Yemen, and this means the scale of arms exports could be even higher than we already thought.

“Arms exports aren’t just numbers on a spreadsheet, they can have deadly consequences and send a message of support to some of the most abusive regimes in the world.”

Exports under OIEL licences have increased in recent years, i reported. While there were just 761 granted in 2009, there were 1,866 in 2015. And the figure is set to increase in 2016, when there were 1,100 OIEL licences in the first six months.

Anti-arms trade campaigners claimed this means the UK could be more deeply involved in the international arms trade than previously thought and that the exports send a “message of support” to despotic regimes.

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COMMENTS

3 hours ago
Little Glimmer
Shouldn't something have been said a long time ago about the conflict of interest in the May household? Nobody said "wait a minute" when for years the Home Secretary May shovelled taxpayers money to G4S "Securing Your World" on an industrial scale (the most recent trough extension being on 8th December)?
Tory Austerity is a bit of a lark, isn't it?

3 hours ago
LightnFluffy
The one thing that Tories value above all else is money, anyway they can get it. When lots of people die in order for them to buy bigger yachts or bigger collections of supercars, they don't lose a minute's sleep about it. Why the majority of the population continue to enable this kind of psychopathic behaviour is maddening.
ReplyShare+3

3 hours ago
Paine Russell Orwell
We also export security and intelligence and security personnel , and guess what it's GS4 who operate the most in these despotic countries . And who is the major share holder and director ? Mr May !
For how long will this pigeon Mrs May be accepted as our PM ? She is clearly been appointed by her husbands Cabal that have a vested interest in war and the sales of Arms ?

4 hours ago
R-32
Why on earth would we sell arms to people who support groups like ISIS? Oh that's right, for money.
ReplyShare2 replies13

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Martin Van Creveld: Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: "Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother."
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Government doesn't investigate human rights claims against Saudi Arabia before selling arms

Exclusive: Officials only come to an 'overall judgement' on whether weapons sold will be used to breach laws

Joe Watts Political Editor @JoeWatts_ 6 hours ago
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/arms-exports-saudi-arabi a-yemen-no-judgement-international-humanitarian-law-theresa-may-cluste r-a7538601.html

The Government does not make judgments over whether countries like Saudi Arabia have violated international humanitarian laws in specific cases before granting arms exports to them.

Ministers have admitted they do not reach any conclusion on whether there have been violations in particular cases, because they say it would “not be possible” in conflicts the UK is not involved in.

Ministers instead try to come to “an overall judgement” that arms sold to a country will not be used to violate international humanitarian laws (IHL), a government spokesman has told The Independent.

The revelation comes ahead of a landmark judicial review case this week in the High Court, which will determine the legality of the arms transfers to Saudi Arabia.


READ MORE
Saudi Arabia's dream of domination has gone up in flames
Campaigners have demanded to know how it is possible to reach an “overall judgement” without determining whether violations have occurred in individual instances and accused the Government of “burying its head in the sand”.

It follows the publication of a report from two committees of MPs which said it had been presented with evidence of “clear violations” of international humanitarian law in the war being waged in part by a Saudi-led coalition in Yemen, including an air strike on a wedding party which killed 47 civilians and injured 58 more.

It has also emerged that Saudi Arabia recently used British-made cluster bombs in the ongoing conflict that the UN believes has led to 10,000 deaths.

There has been outrage that the Government is continuing to allow arms sales to Saudi Arabia despite many claims of violations of IHL in Yemen.

Angus Robertson questions Theresa May over arms sales to Saudi Arabia at PMQs
But when Liberal Democrat MP Tom Brake called on the Government to publish the findings on which its assessment of alleged violations of international humanitarian law in Yemen is based, he was told that while some incidents were monitored and analysed, no conclusions on individual cases are reached.

Instead, information is used to “form an overall view on the approach and attitude of Saudi Arabia” to IHL.

Tobias Ellwood, minister for the Middle East and Africa, said in a written answer: “It is important to make clear that neither the [Ministry of Defence] nor the [Foreign Office] reaches a conclusion as to whether or not an IHL violation has taken place in relation to each and every incident of potential concern that comes to its attention.

“This would simply not be possible in conflicts to which the UK is not a party, as is the case in Yemen.”

Yemen’s Prime Minister accuses UK of war crimes
The response comes despite a joint report by MPs on the House of Commons business and international development committees calling for sales of UK weapons which could be used in Saudi Arabia’s military action in Yemen to be halted until the completion of an independent inquiry into allegations, for which it had seen “clear evidence”.

Mr Brake told The Independent: “Yet again the Government is tying itself up in knots to defend their continued sale of arms to Saudi.

“Instead of fully assessing the significant evidence of horrific attacks by Saudi on civilians in Yemen, they are burying their heads in the sand and allowing British-made weapons to be complicit in these attacks.

“This is the dark side of a Tory-Brexit government who are desperate to pursue trade, no matter the human cost.”



10 examples of Saudi Arabia's human rights abuses
10
show all
Andrew Smith of Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) said the UK regime for granting licences should be reformed.

He said: “How can the Government reach an overall judgement without making judgements on specific allegations?

“How can they possibly form an overall picture without determining whether or not allegations are true? If arms export controls mean anything then all allegations of human rights breaches must be thoroughly investigated.”

It was confirmed last month that Britain exported 500 cluster bombs to Saudi Arabia in an arms deal dating back to when Margaret Thatcher was in power.

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon revealed the official figures, which relate to exports signed off by the Government between 1986 to 1989, after it emerged that a “limited number” of the weapons sold to the autocracy are still in its stockpile.

Theresa May can’t give assurances that no civilians have been killed by British arms in Yemen
The weapons are now banned after Britain signed a treaty in 2010, but Sir Michael has said he was satisfied the bombs had not been used to breach IHL.

Saudi Arabia in December admitted using the weapons in Yemen. It has now told the British government it will no longer use them, but has not confirmed it has destroyed them.

It is also investigating itself over alleged violations of international human rights law in Yemen.

On 7, 8 and 10 February, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and Oxfam will make submissions to the High Court, in a legal challenge brought by CAAT, over the selling of arms by the UK to the Saudis.

James Lynch, head of Human Rights at Amnesty, said the government’s repeated refusal to halt arms transfers “beggars belief”, given the extensive and credible reporting showing the Saudi Arabia-led coalition’s ongoing serious violations of international human rights.

A poll by CAAT has revealed that two-thirds of British people think selling arms to the Saudis is unacceptable.

A Foreign Office spokesperson said: “The UK Government operates one of the most robust arms export control regimes in the world.

“We do not make assessments in each and every alleged case of a breach of IHL, as we are not in a position to do so.

“However, the Ministry of Defence monitors alleged IHL violations using all available information, such as media and other reports, and this wider picture is used to form an overall judgement of the risk that any exported items might be used in the commission of a serious violation of IHL.”

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Martin Van Creveld: Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: "Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother."
Martin Van Creveld: I'll quote Henry Kissinger: "In campaigns like this the antiterror forces lose, because they don't win, and the rebels win by not losing."
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

'Trump's Hard Line on Iran Will Give Saudis Free Hand in Yemen':
http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/39394-trump-s-hard-line-on-iran-wil l-give-saudis-free-hand-in-yemen

'The Trump administration's truculent warning last week that it was putting Iran "on notice" over its recent missile test and a missile strike on a Saudi warship off the coast of Yemen appears calculated to convince the American public that the current administration is going to be tougher on Iran than the Obama administration was.

However, despite the tough talk from National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and other senior officials, the new administration appears to be focused primarily on aligning US policy more closely with that of Saudi Arabia -- especially in its war in Yemen and its broader conflict with Iran. The Saudis have been leading a coalition of Sunni Gulf regimes in bombing most of the Yemeni territory controlled by Houthi rebels since March 2015, with US support.

An unidentified senior administration official speaking at a February 1 press briefing, a transcript of which Truthout has obtained, indicated that, apart from economic sanctions, the administration was considering options "related to support for those that are challenging and opposing Iranian malign activity in the region" -- meaning the Saudis and Israel.

During the briefing, the senior officials signaled clearly that the Trump administration will unconditionally support the Saudi-led air campaign in Yemen. In response to the question of whether the administration was "reassessing" US support for the Saudi war in Yemen, the unnamed senior official answered with one word: "No.".....'

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Saudi Arabia boosting extremism in Europe, says former ambassador
Sir William Patey says Riyadh may not be aware of how its support for a ‘certain brand of Islam’ is leading to radicalisation
Sir William Patey
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jul/13/saudi-arabia-boosting-ex tremism-in-europe-says-former-ambassador

Patrick Wintour Diplomatic editor
Thursday 13 July 2017 11.12 BST Last modified on Thursday 13 July 2017 11.41 BST
Saudi Arabia has been funding mosques throughout Europe that have become hotbeds of extremism, the former British ambassador to Saudi Arabia Sir William Patey has said.

His remarks come a day after the government published a brief summary of a Home Office-commissioned report into the funding of extremism in the UK. The full report is not being published for security reasons.

Patey said he did not believe Saudi Arabia was directly funding terrorist groups, but rather an ideology that leads to extremism, and suggested that its leaders might not be aware of the consequences. “It is unhealthy and we need to do something about it,” he said.

“The Saudis [have] not quite appreciated the impact their funding of a certain brand of Islam is having in the countries in which they do it – it is not just Britain and Europe.

“That is a dialogue we need to have. They are not funding terrorism. They are funding something else, which may down the road lead to individuals being radicalised and becoming fodder for terrorism.”

Patey said the Saudis “find it every easy to back off the idea that they are funding terrorism because they are not.

“What the World Association [sic] of Muslim Youth and the Muslim World League are doing is funding mosques and promoting an ideology – the Salifist Wahhabist ideology.”

He called for clarity on the definition of funding terrorism and “a grownup dialogue with the Gulf about what we think”. There were also “individual Gulf citizens that defied their governments to fund terrorism,” Patey added.

Patey, who was the UK ambassador to Riyadh from 2006 to 2010 and previously head of the Foreign Office Middle East desk, also questioned whether Saudi Arabia and its allies had worked out the implications of their bitter dispute with Qatar.

Three Gulf States – Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – along with Egypt, have sought to isolate Qatar diplomatically and economically, citing its support for terrorism and groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood.

“This has all the hallmarks of a policy that has not been thought through. It does not smack of a considered strategy,” Patey said at roundtable discussion in London organised by the Conservative Middle East Council.


Anti-Qatar alliance renews attack on al-Jazeera Arabic
Read more
“It is not a smart move even if you are sympathetic to their vision. It is a short cut to achieve something quickly and I think they miscalculated and I think they did think that with Trump behind them, Qatar would back down. They raised these stakes because they thought Qatar would back down in the end, so I think they were a bit surprised.”

The boycott had backfired, he argued and far from leading to a coup in Qatar, a cult had developed around the newly popular emir. “The Qataris are rallying round their leadership,” Patey said.

He said he believed the true motive for the dispute was not Qatar’s funding of terrorism, but a wider difference in political vision. “This is about the Muslim Brotherhood. It is a battle for the future of the Middle East,” he said.

Patey also questioned whether all the emirates within the UAE were united behind the boycott. “This is about Abu Dhabi asserting its dominance in foreign policy issues, because this is not in Dubai’s interest,” he said.

Speaking at the same event, Michael Stephens, the head of the Royal United Services Institute Qatar desk, said the Gulf row may lead to an intractable dispute that could prompt investors to think seriously about disinvesting across the Gulf.

“We are now facing five weeks of the conflict when most people thought it would last 72 hours,” he said, calling for a series of de-escalatory measures leading to a joint agreement to fight extremism.

_________________
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www.v911t.org
www.thisweek.org.uk
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http://utangente.free.fr/2003/media2003.pdf
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mick Milton
MI6 linked to al mujahiroun [ Al Muhajiroun ] and Libyan Islamic fighting group who have attacked UK.also many other al Qaeda jihadi groups over time ..who have attacked US .yet the Muslims who are supposed to be our enemies like Syria and Iran haven't attacked the UK.neither have Russia Serbia or north Korea. It seems the only ones who attack us are our allies ! Which then gives me reason to suspect they are still working for MI6 when they attack us...

TonyGosling wrote:
Saudi Arabia boosting extremism in Europe, says former ambassador
Sir William Patey says Riyadh may not be aware of how its support for a ‘certain brand of Islam’ is leading to radicalisation
Sir William Patey
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jul/13/saudi-arabia-boosting-ex tremism-in-europe-says-former-ambassador

Patrick Wintour Diplomatic editor
Thursday 13 July 2017 11.12 BST Last modified on Thursday 13 July 2017 11.41 BST
Saudi Arabia has been funding mosques throughout Europe that have become hotbeds of extremism, the former British ambassador to Saudi Arabia Sir William Patey has said.

His remarks come a day after the government published a brief summary of a Home Office-commissioned report into the funding of extremism in the UK. The full report is not being published for security reasons.

Patey said he did not believe Saudi Arabia was directly funding terrorist groups, but rather an ideology that leads to extremism, and suggested that its leaders might not be aware of the consequences. “It is unhealthy and we need to do something about it,” he said.

“The Saudis [have] not quite appreciated the impact their funding of a certain brand of Islam is having in the countries in which they do it – it is not just Britain and Europe.

“That is a dialogue we need to have. They are not funding terrorism. They are funding something else, which may down the road lead to individuals being radicalised and becoming fodder for terrorism.”

Patey said the Saudis “find it every easy to back off the idea that they are funding terrorism because they are not.

“What the World Association [sic] of Muslim Youth and the Muslim World League are doing is funding mosques and promoting an ideology – the Salifist Wahhabist ideology.”

He called for clarity on the definition of funding terrorism and “a grownup dialogue with the Gulf about what we think”. There were also “individual Gulf citizens that defied their governments to fund terrorism,” Patey added.

Patey, who was the UK ambassador to Riyadh from 2006 to 2010 and previously head of the Foreign Office Middle East desk, also questioned whether Saudi Arabia and its allies had worked out the implications of their bitter dispute with Qatar.

Three Gulf States – Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – along with Egypt, have sought to isolate Qatar diplomatically and economically, citing its support for terrorism and groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood.

“This has all the hallmarks of a policy that has not been thought through. It does not smack of a considered strategy,” Patey said at roundtable discussion in London organised by the Conservative Middle East Council.


Anti-Qatar alliance renews attack on al-Jazeera Arabic
Read more
“It is not a smart move even if you are sympathetic to their vision. It is a short cut to achieve something quickly and I think they miscalculated and I think they did think that with Trump behind them, Qatar would back down. They raised these stakes because they thought Qatar would back down in the end, so I think they were a bit surprised.”

The boycott had backfired, he argued and far from leading to a coup in Qatar, a cult had developed around the newly popular emir. “The Qataris are rallying round their leadership,” Patey said.

He said he believed the true motive for the dispute was not Qatar’s funding of terrorism, but a wider difference in political vision. “This is about the Muslim Brotherhood. It is a battle for the future of the Middle East,” he said.

Patey also questioned whether all the emirates within the UAE were united behind the boycott. “This is about Abu Dhabi asserting its dominance in foreign policy issues, because this is not in Dubai’s interest,” he said.

Speaking at the same event, Michael Stephens, the head of the Royal United Services Institute Qatar desk, said the Gulf row may lead to an intractable dispute that could prompt investors to think seriously about disinvesting across the Gulf.

“We are now facing five weeks of the conflict when most people thought it would last 72 hours,” he said, calling for a series of de-escalatory measures leading to a joint agreement to fight extremism.

_________________
www.lawyerscommitteefor9-11inquiry.org
www.rethink911.org
www.patriotsquestion911.com
www.actorsandartistsfor911truth.org
www.mediafor911truth.org
www.pilotsfor911truth.org
www.mp911truth.org
www.ae911truth.org
www.rl911truth.org
www.stj911.org
www.v911t.org
www.thisweek.org.uk
www.abolishwar.org.uk
www.elementary.org.uk
www.radio4all.net/index.php/contributor/2149
http://utangente.free.fr/2003/media2003.pdf
"The maintenance of secrets acts like a psychic poison which alienates the possessor from the community" Carl Jung
https://37.220.108.147/members/www.bilderberg.org/phpBB2/
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

'Stop imminent executions in Saudi Arabia@:
https://act.reprieve.org.uk/page/s/SaudiProtestExecutions

'14 people sentenced to death on protest charges in Saudi Arabia have been prepared for execution and could face beheading within hours. They include a disabled man and two sentenced to death as juveniles.

Munir Al-Adam was born with impaired sight and hearing. In their efforts to extract a "confession" from him, Munir's captors tortured him so badly that he was rendered completely deaf in one ear. Mujtaba'a al-Sweikat was just 17 when arrested at the airport on his way to take up a place at university in the US. He was burnt with cigarettes and tortured so savagely that his shoulder was broken. He was denied medical care and sentenced to die on the basis of the forced "confession".

The world must tell the new Saudi Prince that these 14 executions are unacceptable and cannot be allowed to go ahead.

Can you sign our petition and call on King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed to stop these executions?'

_________________
'And he (the devil) said to him: To thee will I give all this power, and the glory of them; for to me they are delivered, and to whom I will, I give them'. Luke IV 5-7.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Britain Aassists Saudi's Yemen Slaughter www.medialens.org/index.php/alerts/alert-archive/2016/826-menwith-mena ce-britain-s-complicity-in-saudi-arabia-s-terror-campaign-against-yeme n.html

Yemen's cholera epidemic is worst on record: Oxfam www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/07/yemen-cholera-epidemic-worst-record-oxf am-170721081529026.html

Menwith Menace: Britain’s Complicity In Saudi Arabia’s Terror Campaign Against Yemen
www.medialens.org/index.php/alerts/alert-archive/2016/826-menwith-mena ce-britain-s-complicity-in-saudi-arabia-s-terror-campaign-against-yeme n.html

The 'mainstream' Western media is, almost by definition, the last place to consult for honest reporting of Western crimes. Consider the appalling case of Yemen which is consumed by war and an ongoing humanitarian catastrophe.

Since March 2015, a 'coalition' of Sunni Arab states led by Saudi Arabia, and supported by the US, Britain and France, has been dropping bombs on neighbouring Yemen. The scale of the bombing is indicated in a recent article by Felicity Arbuthnot - in one year, 330,000 homes, 648 mosques, 630 schools and institutes, and 250 health facilities were destroyed or damaged. The stated aim of Saudi Arabia's devastating assault on Yemen is to reinstate the Yemeni president, Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, and to hold back Houthi rebels who are allied with the former president, Ali Abdullah Saleh. The Saudis assert that the Houthis, who control Yemen's capital, Sanaa, are 'proxies' for Iran: always a convenient propaganda claim to elicit Western backing and 'justify' intervention.

Philip Hammond, who was UK defence secretary when the Saudi bombing began in 2015, promised:

'We'll support the Saudis in every practical way short of engaging in combat.'

The British government has been true to its word; in this respect at least. Campaign Against Arms Trade says that UK sales to Saudi Arabia since the start of the attacks on Yemen include £2.2 billion of aircraft, helicopters and drones, £1.1 billion of missiles, bombs and grenades, and nearly half a million pounds of armoured vehicles and tanks. Just days ago, it was revealed that Britain is now the second biggest dealer of arms in the world. Is there any clearer sign of the corrupt nature of UK foreign policy?

Perhaps there is. Last month, Oxfam reported that in excess of 21 million people in Yemen, out of a total population of around 27 million, are in need of humanitarian aid, more than in any other country. Over 6,000 people have been killed, more than 3 million displaced and more than 14 million are suffering hunger and malnutrition.

Amnesty International reports that British-made cluster bombs have been used in deadly attacks on civilians. Children are among those who have been killed and maimed. The human rights organisation says that the UK should stop all arms sales to Saudi Arabia. Amnesty has also called for Saudi Arabia to be dropped from the United Nations Human Rights Council because of 'gross and systematic violations of human rights', both at home and abroad.



'They Call It Natural Death. But It's Not.'
In a two-part piece for BBC Newsnight last year, Gabriel Gatehouse commendably reported from Yemen on the plight of civilians there, including the Saudi targeting of civilian infrastructure. The BBC journalist also alluded to 'the British dimension' in which the Saudi 'coalition's efforts are supported by Britain and the United States', with British-supplied weaponry being used by the Saudis. Although a welcome deviation from the norm, his criticism of UK foreign policy was muted and not subsequently maintained by BBC News, as far as we could see (with limited recent exceptions as we will discuss later).

Peter Oborne is a rare example of a Western journalist reporting from Yemen, also pointing unequivocally to British complicity in the country's nightmare. Together with his colleague Nawal Al-Maghafi, Oborne notes in a recent article that:

'We discovered indisputable evidence that the coalition, backed by the UK as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, is targeting Yemeni civilians in blatant breach of the rules of war.'

At the same time, Saudi Arabia has imposed a brutal blockade on Yemen preventing vital commodities from getting into the country. One doctor at the Republic teaching hospital in Sanaa told Oborne:

'We are unable to get medical supplies. Anaesthetics. Medicines for kidneys. There are babies dying in incubators because we can't get supplies to treat them.'

The doctor estimated that 25 people were dying every day at the Republic hospital because of the blockade. He continued:

'They call it natural death. But it's not. If we had the medicines they wouldn't be dead.

'I consider them killed as if they were killed by an air strike, because if we had the medicines they would still be alive.'

This is shocking enough. But Oborne adds that there is:

'powerful evidence that the Saudi-led coalition has deliberately targeted hospitals across the country. Four MSF [Médecins Sans Frontières] hospitals had been hit by Saudi air strikes prior to the organisation's withdrawal from the country, even though MSF were careful to give the Saudi authorities their GPS positions.'

Oborne, who resigned as political commentator from the Telegraph last year, places Western complicity in Yemen's nightmare at the front and centre of his reporting. He points out that Britain has continued to sell arms to Saudi Arabia and its partners, despite copious evidence of breaches of international humanitarian law presented by human rights organisations.

This is an echo of Britain's shameful role in arming Indonesia while it crushed tiny independence-seeking East Timor, killing around 200,000 people – about one-third of its population. Noam Chomsky described it as a 'slaughter' of 'near-genocidal' levels. He noted that:

'By 1998, Britain had become the leading supplier of arms to Indonesia...over the strong protests of Amnesty International, Indonesian dissidents, and Timorese victims. Arms sales are reported to make up at least a fifth of Britain's exports to Indonesia (estimated at one billion pounds), led by British Aerospace'.

(Noam Chomsky, 'Rogue States', Pluto Books, 2000, p. 232)

In the present case of Yemen, the British Foreign Office has repeatedly denied that Saudi Arabia had broken humanitarian law, asserting until a couple of months ago that the FO's own 'assessment' had cleared the Saudis of any wrong-doing. As Oborne notes, however, on July 21 this year, the last day of parliament before the long summer recess:

'the British government was forced to admit that it had repeatedly misled parliament over the war in Yemen.'

It turns out that no such 'assessment' had taken place; a grudging and potentially damaging admission that ministers had clearly hoped to slip out quietly without proper scrutiny. Oborne describes it as 'a dark moment of official embarrassment.' You have to dig deep in the BBC News website to find scant mention of this shameful episode.

Moreover, Britain has supported the UN Security Council resolution backing a Saudi blockade, and the UK has also provided the Saudis with intelligence and logistical support.

'Perhaps most crucially of all, Britain and the United States have provided Saudi Arabia with diplomatic cover. Last year, Britain and the United States helped to block a Dutch initiative at the UN Human Rights Council for an independent investigation into violations of international humanitarian law.'

In a powerful accompanying filmed report on the destruction of Yemen's capital Sanaa, Oborne concludes:

'This city of old Sanaa is as extraordinary, as priceless, as unique as any of the masterpieces of Western civilisation – like Florence or Venice. Just imagine the outcry if bombs were falling on Florence or Venice. But because this is old Sanaa, in forgotten Yemen, nobody cares a damn.'

And least of all Britain's new Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, who callously waved away copious evidence of Saudi breaches of international humanitarian law. The Guardian's diplomatic editor Patrick Wintour writes of Johnson's assertion that the Saudis are not 'in clear breach' of humanitarian law:

'His judgment is based largely on a Saudi-led inquiry into eight controversial incidents, including the bombing of hospitals.'

To his credit, Wintour notes that Johnson was 'defending the credibility of a Saudi-led inquiry exonerating Saudi targeting'. Comment seems superfluous. He then adds Johnson's own unwittingly self-damning statement:

'They [the Saudis] have the best insight into their own procedures and will be able to conduct the most thorough and conclusive investigations. It will also allow the coalition forces to work out what went wrong and apply the lessons learned in the best possible way. This is the standard we set ourselves and our allies.'

Indeed, this is the same standard that the world saw with horror last year when the US investigated, and largely exonerated itself, over its dreadful bombing of an MSF hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan.

Boris Johnson is sweeping aside compelling evidence of serious breaches of international law in a cynical move to maintain lucrative UK arms sales to Saudi Arabia, and to protect close strategic ties with a brutal kingdom of state beheaders and torturers. All this belies his carefully-crafted media image as an amiably bumbling and largely harmless P.G. Wodehouse-like character. In reality, he is a dangerous, extreme right-wing politician with too much power. Sadly, even the often admirable Peter Oborne's judgement went awry on his return from Yemen when he appealed to Johnson to 'act boldly to reset Riyadh [i.e. Saudi Arabia] relations':

'Boris Johnson has the potential to be one of the great British foreign secretaries of the modern era.'

Sadly, this line by Oborne does not appear to be satire.

Meanwhile, on September 5, the foreign office minister, Tobias Ellwood, addressed the Commons after being requested to do so by the Speaker, John Bercow, because of previously misleading statements on Yemen given by ministers to parliament. Wintour claims in his Guardian report that Ellwood 'apologised' for these 'inaccurate answers'. But the quoted wording is far from a proper apology. Indeed, the foreign minister obfuscated further in support of Saudi Arabia. Ellwood:

'said it was not for the UK government to conclude whether individual bombing incidents by the Saudis represented breaches of international humanitarian law (IHL), but instead to "take an overall view of the approach and attitude by Saudi Arabia to international humanitarian law".'

In effect, the UK would continue to rely on Saudi Arabia's assessments on whether the latter had breached international humanitarian law. Worse, while Yemenis continued to die under US/UK-supported bombing, Ellwood went on to support the Saudis:

'Defending the Saudi response to criticisms of its campaign, Ellwood said: "It was new territory for Saudi Arabia and a conservative nation was not used to such exposure."'

This was sophistry of the worst order. 'New territory' entails a murderous bombing campaign and a crippling blockade. And describing Saudi Arabia - a brutal and repressive regime which ranks amongst the world's worst offenders of human rights - as merely 'a conservative nation', speaks volumes about the mental and ethical contortions required to defend British foreign policy.

But there is even more to say about the UK's shameful complicity in Yemen's destruction. And, from what we have seen so far, it has had zero coverage in the 'mainstream' media.



Media Silence Over UK Role In 'Targeted Killing'
Last week, the online investigative journal The Intercept published an in-depth piece on revelations about spying based on top-secret documents provided to them by Edward Snowden, the US National Security Agency whistle-blower. Titled 'Inside Menwith Hill. The NSA's British Base at the Heart of U.S. Targeted Killing', the article was written by Ryan Gallagher, a UK-based journalist specialising in government surveillance, technology and civil liberties.

The RAF Menwith Hill base lies a few miles from Harrogate in North Yorkshire and is the largest electronic monitoring station in the world. As Gallagher notes: 'it is a vital part of the NSA's sprawling global surveillance network'. Consequently, its activities are shrouded in secrecy, despite the best efforts of human rights groups and a few British politicians demanding greater transparency. These efforts have been continually rebuffed by the UK government 'citing a longstanding policy not to discuss matters related to national security.'

Now, however, the NSA files released by Snowden:

'reveal for the first time how the NSA has used the British base to aid "a significant number of capture-kill operations" across the Middle East and North Africa, fueled by powerful eavesdropping technology that can harvest data from more than 300 million emails and phone calls a day.'

Over the past decade, advanced surveillance programmes at Menwith Hill have located 'suspected terrorists accessing the internet in remote parts of the world' and 'provided support for conventional British and American military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.'

But, adds Gallagher, 'they have also aided covert missions in countries where the U.S. has not declared war', including Yemen. These disclosures 'raise new questions about the extent of British complicity in U.S. drone strikes and other so-called targeted killing missions, which may in some cases have violated international laws or constituted war crimes.'

Kat Craig, legal director of London-based human rights group Reprieve, told Gallagher that Snowden's revelations are:

'yet another example of the unacceptable level of secrecy that surrounds U.K. involvement in the U.S. "targeted killing" program. It is now imperative that the prime minister comes clean about U.K. involvement in targeted killing'.

Gallagher describes a number of surveillance programmes, including one called GHOSTWOLF used to monitor 'terrorist' activity in internet cafes in the Middle East. This information is being used to 'capture or eliminate key nodes in terrorist networks'.

As Gallagher observes:

'GHOSTWOLF ties Menwith Hill to lethal operations in Yemen, providing the first documentary evidence that directly implicates the U.K. in covert actions in the country.

'Menwith Hill's previously undisclosed role aiding the so-called targeted killing of terror suspects highlights the extent of the British government's apparent complicity in controversial U.S. attacks — and raises questions about the legality of the secret operations carried out from the base.'

The British government has consistently asserted that operations at Menwith 'have always been, and continue to be' carried out with its 'knowledge and consent.' In the context of the commission of war crimes, this is a damning admission.

Gallagher expands:

'For several years, British human rights campaigners and lawmakers have been pressuring the government to provide information about whether it has had any role aiding U.S. targeted killing operations, yet they have been met with silence. In particular, there has been an attempt to establish whether the U.K. has aided U.S. drone bombings outside of declared war zones — in countries including Yemen, Pakistan, and Somalia — which have resulted in the deaths of hundreds of civilians and are in some cases considered by United Nations officials to possibly constitute war crimes and violations of international law.'

These new, deeply damaging revelations by Snowden appear to have been completely blanked by the 'mainstream' media. Searches of the Lexis-Nexis newspaper database yield zero hits on Snowden's Menwith revelations, and there appears to have been nothing published on the BBC News website. Indeed, this dearth of coverage by UK media, including BBC News, had been anticipated by US investigative reporter Glenn Greenwald, who previously worked with Snowden.

Not unusually, one has to go to media such as RT or PressTV to find any coverage; another reason why these outlets are so often bitterly denigrated as 'propaganda' operations by corporate journalists who haven't done their job of holding Western power to account.



The Post-Brexit, $2 Trillion Saudi Carrot
On September 7, BBC Newsnight revealed how a draft report by MPs on the influential committee on arms export control was being watered down to remove the call for a suspension of arms sales to Saudi Arabia (clip available here). A statement in the draft report had said:

'The weight of evidence of violations of international humanitarian law by the Saudi-led coalition is now so great, that it is very difficult to continue to support Saudi Arabia.'

But a number of 'pro-defence' MPs had then tabled more than 130 amendments, including a move to remove the call to suspend arms sales to Saudi Arabia. The Guardian noted cautiously that this attempt:

'underlines the sensitivity of the issue of UK-Saudi relations at Westminster, the importance of the Gulf to the UK defence industry and the concern that Britain, for a variety of security reasons, is too ready to take Saudi assurances about how it is conducting a difficult civil war in Yemen.'

That is putting it all too mildly; a point to which we return below.

The following evening (September Cool, Tory MP Crispin Blunt refused to respond when pressed by Newsnight presenter Kirsty Wark about reportedly walking out of the committee meeting in order to stall a vote. It appears that Blunt had feared his amendments were about to be rejected, and by walking out of the meeting the quorum requirement would fail and no valid vote could take place.

But the sickness of government priorities at the intersection of foreign policy and economic imperatives was really highlighted when the Saudi foreign minister declared last week that it was 'in Britain's interest' to continue supporting Saudi Arabia in its murderous assault on Yemen. Or, as the neocon Telegraph defence editor Con Coughlin put it:

'to continue supporting the Saudis in the battle to prevent Yemen falling into the hands of Iranian-backed Houthi rebels.'

Adel al-Jubeir, the Saudi foreign minister, then dangled a carrot in front of British ministers' noses.

'Apart from maintaining traditional links on military and intelligence cooperation, Mr Jubeir also said post-Brexit Britain could look forward to forging new trade links with the kingdom as Saudi Arabia embarks on its ambitious plan to restructure its economy under a plan called Saudi Vision 2030. "We are looking at more than $2 trillion worth of investment opportunities over the next decade, and this will take the relationship between Saudi Arabia and Britain to an entirely new level post-Brexit."'

Sometimes, you have to go to the extreme right-wing press to have the crude realpolitik spelled out so clearly.

Saudi pressure is considerable and difficult to resist. In June, it was reported that even the UN succumbed when it removed Saudi Arabia from a blacklist of countries responsible for child casualties in conflicts around the globe. Saudi Arabia had been placed on the list for killing and maiming children in Yemen bombing attacks. The country, along with other Arab and Muslim countries, had reportedly threatened to withdraw funding from vital UN humanitarian programmes. One anonymous diplomat spoke of 'bullying, threats, pressure', and summed it up as 'real blackmail'.

The reports on Yemen cited in this media alert from the Guardian and BBC News show the permissible limits of occasional – very occasional – challenges to state power. What is routinely missing, and what would be prominent in coverage of British foreign policy in honest news media, has never been better highlighted than by historian Mark Curtis. For many years, he has extensively analysed formerly secret government records detailing internal discussions about state policies and priorities. In his book, 'Web of Deceit', which lays out 'Britain's real role in the world', Curtis concludes that the primary function of the British state:

'virtually its raison d'être for several centuries – is to aid British companies in getting their hands on other countries' resources.'

(Mark Curtis, 'Web of Deceit', 2003, Vintage, p. 210)

To pursue such state policies means initiating war, military interventions, threats, bullying, and other aggressive actions, usually in support of the United States and/or Nato. This global imperialism is dressed up in propaganda garb as 'countering terrorism', 'improving world security', 'working with our allies' and similar pieties propagated by the 'mainstream' media. Curtis lays particular responsibility for such propaganda at the door of the 'liberal' media, notably the Guardian and BBC News:

'The liberal intelligentsia in Britain is in my view guilty of helping to weave a collective web of deceit.... To read many mainstream commentators' writings on Britain's role in the world is to enter a surreal, Kafkaesque world where the reality is often the direct opposite of what is contended and where the startling assumptions are frighteningly supportive of state power.'

(Ibid., p. 4)

This 'surreal, Kafkaesque world' - in which Britain shares responsibility for appalling violence, while proclaiming its supposed desire for 'peace' and 'security' - will continue for as long as we do not have an honest media that seriously and consistently challenges brutal state power.

DC

_________________
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www.pilotsfor911truth.org
www.mp911truth.org
www.ae911truth.org
www.rl911truth.org
www.stj911.org
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www.thisweek.org.uk
www.abolishwar.org.uk
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www.radio4all.net/index.php/contributor/2149
http://utangente.free.fr/2003/media2003.pdf
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2017 12:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

British police may have helped Saudi Arabia arrest men due to be executed, MPs reveal
Cross-party letter urges Theresa May to intervene in potential execution of 14 prisoners

Jon Sharman 4 days ago16 comments
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/saudi-arabia-14-executio ns-uk-british-police-training-mp-letter-theresa-may-reprieve-a7852211. html

Saudi Arabia's King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud welcomes British Prime Minister Theresa May in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in April REUTERS
Training by British police may have directly helped Saudi agents arrest more than a dozen people now believed to be facing execution, it is feared.

MPs including ex-Labour leader Ed Miliband have written to Theresa May asking her to "personally urge" the Saudi royal family to halt the killings.

Human rights charity Reprieve said the 14 prisoners included a disabled man and a student, Mujtaba al-Sweikat, arrested in 2012 when he was only 17.


READ MORE
Labour joins 9/11 survivors in demanding May release Saudi report
The Prime Minister must "take urgent steps to confirm that UK assistance played no role in these individuals' conviction", the MPs wrote, according to the BBC.

Conservative Andrew Mitchell and Liberal Democrat Tom Brake also signed the letter, which demands a "full account to Parliament of any and all UK training for Saudi police and criminal justice institutions".

Mr Brake raised the issue in an urgent question to Parliament earlier this week.

He said: "The PM is promoting the UK as a global nation. How we respond to the threat of summary executions by a partner and close ally will determine exactly what kind of global nation she intends the UK to be - a global champion of human rights or an apologist for human rights abusers."

Foreign Office minister Alistair Burt replied: "The UK government opposes the use of the death penalty in all circumstances and in every country including Saudi Arabia."

In the House of Lords, the Archbishop of Canterbury also pleaded with Ms May to intervene.

The Most Rev Justin Welby said the "depth" of the UK's relationship with Saudi Arabia in areas like trade and finance offered options "for significantly more leverage than mere condemnation".

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Answering for the Government, Baroness Goldie said Saudi Arabia was aware of the UK's concerns, but it was a "sovereign state" and it was not possible for the UK to "interfere with either its judicial system or its constitutional approach to these matters".

She told peers: "We can make clear, as we do, our profound disapproval and opposition to abuses of human rights and the use of the death penalty."

She added ministers were urgently seeking clarification of the situation from the highest levels of Saudi leadership and reiterating "profound concerns" about the reports.

Reprieve said Mr al-Sweikat and the others convicted of similar protest-related offences now face "imminent execution based on false confessions extracted through torture in a secretive trial".

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch released statements last month calling the men's trial "grossly unfair". They said a court of appeals has upheld the convictions and death sentences.


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Trump 'de-emphasises human rights' in Saudi Arabia speech: "We are not here to lecture"
According to Reprieve, the 14 were recently moved to the capital, Riyadh, from another prison, suggesting they could be executed soon.

Saudi Arabia has one of the world's highest execution rates. On 11 July the kingdom executed four Shiites for protest-related violence and attacks on police.

Reprieve warned last year that training from British police officers was equipping Saudi counterparts with skills that could be used to "identify individuals who later go on to be tortured or subjected to other human rights abuses".


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How Britain taught Arab police forces all they know
At the time, the Foreign Office said UK expertise was improving the Saudi justice system, including compliance with human rights.

A spokeswoman told The Independent last summer: "It is not good enough to merely criticise other countries from the sidelines. Only by working with Saudi Arabia are we able to bring about the changes we would like to see in the country."

The Saudi embassy in the UK has been contacted for comment.

A College of Policing spokesperson said: "The College ensures that all the overseas assistance it provides complies with human rights and is guided by our code of ethics.

"Decisions about the provision of UK policing assistance overseas must reconcile the difficulties of working with countries whose standards of human rights may be at odds with our own with the opportunity to address national security concerns, help to protect UK citizens overseas and contribute to reform in those countries.

"Before undertaking any international work the College refers to advice from various government departments through the International Police Assistance Board.

"The board assesses all requests for assistance against British values and interests, including overseas security and justice assistance guidance and human rights assessments.

"For countries where human rights compliance may be of concern, the College completes a full overseas security and tustice assistance human rights assessment and, where necessary, gain ministerial approval."

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 1:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Saudi Arabia is the top sponsor of terrorism in U.K., report says
https://news.vice.com/story/saudi-arabia-is-the-top-sponsor-of-terrori sm-in-u-k-report-says

By Alexa Liautaud Jul 5, 2017

Saudi Arabia is the “foremost” foreign funder of Islamist extremism in the U.K., according to new report released by a British think tank on Wednesday.

The Henry Jackson Society — a right-wing think tank — claims that overseas funding primarily from the governments and private charities of Gulf countries has a “clear and growing link” to the onslaught of violence the U.K. and other Western countries.

The group estimates that the Saudi government and charities spent an estimated $4 billion exporting Saudi Arabia’s strict interpretation of Islam, known as Wahhabism, worldwide in 2015, up from $2 billion in 2007. In 2015, there were 110 mosques in the U.K. practicing Salafism and Wahhabism compared to 68 in 2007. The money is primarily funneled through mosques and Islamic schools in Britain, according to the report.

“Influence has also been exerted through the training of British Muslim religious leaders in Saudi Arabia, as well as the use of Saudi textbooks in a number of the U.K.’s independent Islamic schools,” the report said.

Although many Western countries, including the United States, have acknowledged the threat of foreign terrorist financing, Britain “has seen far less of a response from policy makers supporting moves to tackle the challenge of foreign-funded Islamist extremism,” the report said.

Responding to the report, Labor MP Dan Jarvis told the BBC that “in the wake of the terrible and tragic terrorist attacks we have seen this year, it is vital that we use every tool at our disposal to protect our communities.”

“This includes identifying the networks that promote and support extremism and shutting down the financial networks that fund it,” he said.

Prime Minister Theresa May created a private government commission for countering extremism in the wake of several deadly terrorist incidents in Britain, including the Manchester Arena attack in which a suicide bomber detonated during an Ariana Grande concert, killing 22 people. May has faced accusations that she is sitting on a report about terrorist financing that reportedly shows Saudi Arabia is largely to blame.

May has publicly reinforced the U.K.’s economic and security ties to the Kingdom and in turn, may be reluctant to point fingers. Saudi Arabia is one of the U.K.’s principal security partners in the Middle East, raking in $4.2 billion in weapons deals since March 2015.

Just like President Trump, one of May’s first international visits was to Saudi Arabia and she has repeatedly defended her relationship even in the face of criticism over the Saudi-led coalition airstrikes in the brutal war in Yemen.

The report also comes as Saudi Arabia and a number of other Gulf countries implemented a blockade against Qatar amid accusations that the country was itself a funder of terrorism. The report includes Qatar in its findings but still concludes that Saudi Arabia is the principal perpetrator.

The Saudi embassy said that the claims made by the report were “categorically false,” according to the BBC.

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