The Global Village

 

A Marriage of Convenience: Iran, al-Qaeda and the VIA plot

Par Rouba al-Fattal le 30 avril 2013

Al-Fatal_Ruba.jpgA week ago two men were arrested in Canada on suspicion of planning what officials describe as an al-Qaeda-backed plot to derail a VIA passenger train traveling from Toronto to New York. Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officials said the alleged plot had support from al-Qaeda in Iran, although there was no sign of state sponsorship. The Iranian government quickly denied any links to the two men in question. Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman, Ramin Mehmanparast, also said “al-Qaeda's beliefs are in no way consistent with Tehran's”. 

La singularité de la Shoah et l'indépendance d’Israël

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 7 avril 2013

Freddy_Eytan.JPGLe mouvement sioniste existait depuis Theodore Herzl mais c’est la Shoah qui a rendu la création d’Israël urgente, obligatoire, vitale et immanente. La création de d’Israël est le triomphe de la vie sur la mort, la victoire des prières entendues. Juste après la guerre, les Européens, encore troublés et culpabilisés, ont préféré tourner la page furtivement. Le Vatican a fermé ses archives. Les portes du souvenir ont été bouclées à double tour. Personne n’osait franchir les murs d’acier et vérifier les arcanes du monde de l’indifférence, remuer un passé flou et douteux. Derrière le rideau de fer, les camps de la mort résonnaient encore des cris des âmes pures et innocentes. Les cendres de nos proches, de nos coreligionnaires, ont été absorbées, englouties dans le sol européen. 

The Road to Syria: Are We There Yet?

Par Rouba al-Fattal le 5 avril 2013

Al-Fatal_Ruba.jpgAl-Fatal_Ruba.jpgIt has been two years since the Syrian Government’s violent crackdown on protesters started. According to UN reports, the conflict has claimed more than 70,000 lives, displaced four million people internally and forced about million people to seek refuge in neighboring countries such as Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey, where many opposition leaders have taken refuge. Thousands of civilians have also been detained arbitrarily and there are reports of executions and torture. Also since the uprising many schools were damaged or forced to close and Syrian civilians suffer the lack of basic services such as electricity, clean water and hospitals. Moreover, the situation in Syria has created a fertile ground for trans-national terrorism to rise.

Turquie-Israël- réconciliation et intérêt stratégique

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 31 mars 2013

Freddy_Eytan.JPGJerusalem - La visite du président Obama dans notre région aura sans doute des retombées politiques locales, régionales et internationales. La première conséquence est considérable car elle met un terme à plusieurs années de tensions, d'incompréhensions, de haine et de dégâts bilatéraux entre la Turquie et Israël: deux puissances régionales pro-occidentales ayant des intérêts stratégiques communs dans un environnement déstabilisant et explosif.  


Syria: Searching for a Way into the Quagmire

Par David T. Jones le 29 mars 2013

jones_david.jpgWashington, DC - Analysts are clever in finding (and repeating) aphorisms.  One is the definition of insanity as “repeating the same negative action believing that this time it will have a positive result.”
And thus the Syria syndrome.
We have watched the Arab Spring degenerate into a noxious weed patch when we believed flowers had been planted.  We have watched the consequence of removing the Libyan tyrant Qhadafi (vicious but not directly invidious to USG interests) and reaped the results in Benghazi and Mali.

HABEMUS PAPAM

Par Father John Walsh le 16 mars 2013

father_walsh.jpg

The wind blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know whence it comes from or where it goes; so it is with every person who is born of the Spirit. (John 3:8)  A puff of white smoke!  A new Pope!  Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, now Pope Francis, becomes leader of the Roman Catholic Church.  On the balcony overlooking Saint Peter’s Square he addresses the people of the world.  His first words are memorable. In times of uncertainty, disruption, division, and alienation, he offers the image of a “camina,” a walk, pilgrims together, and then, spontaneously he includes all people of good will with the faithful. 

 

Realities facing Scotland and Quebec are worlds apart

Par Jim Wilson le 13 mars 2013

Scotland has many historical links with Quebec .Montreal, with its street names and institutions, provides signposts to that past. Despite the connections, in their quest for independence the two are literally and metaphorically oceans apart. Quebec’s additional difficulties compared to those facing Scotland are numerous; in politics, history, culture or geography, there are substantial differences. However, in the crucial matter of the economy, both face similar challenges.

Obama en Israël- amitiés et réalités

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 13 mars 2013

Freddy_Eytan.JPGJerusalem - Le Président des Etats-Unis sera reçu en grande pompe et avec tous les égards dus à la politesse et les respects du protocole. C'est naturel et normal pour accueillir le chef de la plus grande puissance de la planète, celui qui nous dicte l'ordre du jour mondial.
Obama a enfin choisi Israël pour marquer son premier voyage officiel à l'étranger. Il avait manqué le rendez-vous historique lors du précédent mandat et sans doute a commis une erreur stratégique en préférant le Caire à Jérusalem.

L’Europe et le « Parti d’Allah »

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 16 février 2013

Freddy_Eytan.JPGLe Hezbollah a été créé en 1982 juste après la Première guerre du Liban. Plus de cinq mille Iraniens membres des « Gardiens de la révolution »  se sont installés dans la région de Baalbek au Liban pour « remporter la victoire d’Allah ». L’idéologie est claire : la révolution islamique devrait s’installer dans tout le Moyen-Orient balayant ainsi les monarchies arabes et chassant les Sionistes de toute la Palestine et notamment de Jérusalem !
Pour aboutir à son objectif, le Hezbollah emploie des méthodes de terreur et de terrorisme contre des cibles occidentales, israéliennes et juives. Depuis 1983, le Hezbollah a enregistré des dizaines d’attentats spectaculaires, des prises d’otages, et des missions suicidaires à travers toute la planète.  

A Wise Time for Going, A Good Way to Leave

Par David T. Jones le 12 février 2013

jones_david_01.jpgFar be it for non-Catholics to pontificate (so to speak) on Pope Benedict XVI’s decision to retire from the papacy on February 28th.  There are those who might consider any comment at best gratuitous; at worst, intrusive.
But the Pope is a global change-maker and political figure at least as much as a religious leader. Certainly, that was true for John Paul II whose long tenure defined the strengths and challenges facing 21st century Catholicism.  
Consequently, we see Pope Benedict XVI’s decision to retire as wise. His tenure as Pope is already being called a transitional period, but history is yet to speak.

It’s Minority Time at State

Par David T. Jones le 1 février 2013

kerry.JPGWashington,DC~ It is time for a minority as U.S. Secretary of State.A white male.

For some while now, males have been a demographic minority in the U.S. population.  And white males are an even smaller minority of the overall population. Consequently, it is appropriate for a white male to lead the Department of State for President Obama’s second term.  And the president nominated and the Senate confirmed Senator John Forbes Kerry (D-Mass) for the position.

Taxes, Taxes, and More Taxes

Par David T. Jones le 19 janvier 2013

Foreign observers tut-tut the United States for failing to bring coherence to its fiscal circumstances. These observers either fail to realize or deliberately ignore that we are engaged in an existential political/economic struggle over what kind of society we will endorse.  It is the most defining such struggle since the Great Depression of the 1930s, which gave rise to compromise instituting some elements of a welfare state (social security, farm supports, food stamps, bank deposit insurance, etc.) while leaving other elements of free market capitalism unaffected.  But if our backs are not yet up against the wall, we are on the “warning track.”  Even with full, booming economic recovery, it appears impossible to sustain the current levels of social security, Medicare/Medicaid, and unemployment welfare with current tax revenues. 

THE GROWING IRANIAN THREAT IN THE AMERICAS

Par Shabnam Assadollahi le 6 janvier 2013

Shabnam.jpgOttawa - The Islamic Republic of Iran's infiltration in the US, Canada and South American countries started in early 90s as the Ayatollah Rafsanjani came into power and spread terrorism abroad. We need to stop the growing threat of the IRI  in Canada and the US.
Immigration is a big issue. If we cannot look carefully and extensively into people’s background, we cannot really have meaningful and reliable security checks. After all, how much good is closing down the Embassy in Canada, if hordes of essentially unscreenable people are entering Canada from Iran aside from those already active in Canadian soil.

Of images and guns

Par Beryl Wajsman le 18 décembre 2012

…and yet again.

Words fail. Comfort the bereaved yes. But platitudes to the living, whether from realms private or public are inappropriate. As Father John writes on the page opposite, there is a time to respect silence. Or perhaps a time for respectful silence.
But let us suggest that in one arena this is just the time for certain words. Not the obsequiousness of public officials promising to do something about…it…at some time…soon. But the urgency of addressing…it… in the public arena, with fierce urgency… now.

Le camouflet palestinien et le théâtre onusien de l'absurde

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 9 décembre 2012

L'Assemblée générale de l'ONU est "la bête noire" des diplomates israéliens. Le Général De Gaulle parlait de "machin" et Ben Gourion enchérissait  "Oum Shmoum" qui veut dire "ONU=néant". 

En fait, depuis 1948 à ce jour, l'ONU demeure impuissante dans la solution du conflit Israélo-arabe. Cette Assemblée au vote automatique a adopté plus d'un millier de résolutions au détriment d’Israël sans être capable d'imposer leurs applications, toutes les tentatives ont subi un cuisant échec. 

Media coverage of Mid-East is biased not balanced

Par Beryl Wajsman le 21 novembre 2012

Too many in the media, in their rush for "balance" on reporting on Israel's response to Hamas' attacks, have forgotten that words matter, images can be contrived and facts must be checked. An anti-Israel bias has brushed all that aside far too often.
Even CNN has resorted to using phrases normally heard on local radio stations without a sophisticated news-gathering organization. Phrases like "Palestinian retaliation for Israeli bombing." They are either kidding themselves or purposely misleading the public.

Le Hamas dans le collimateur d'Israël

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 15 novembre 2012

Freddy_Eytan.JPGJerusalem - L’opération « Pilier de défense » est justifiée et légitime et était prévisible. En lançant une attaque foudroyante contre le Hamas, Tsahal reprend la maîtrise du ciel et du terrain et renforce considérablement sa dissuasion. Contrairement aux chefs terroristes du Hamas, les officiers et les commandants de Tsahal sont toujours en première ligne et tous combattent pour une cause juste et noble, celle d’assurer la sécurité des femmes et des enfants dans un pays démocratique  en proie de la terreur des attentats aveugles et de la panique des roquettes et desmissiles. Un cas unique dans l’Histoire contemporaine !

The American Election Mulling Over the Entrails

Par David T. Jones le 15 novembre 2012

jones_david_01.jpgWashington, DC - Republicans are poised between relishing recrimination and reviewing revenge scenarios.

Heading into the election, they had a wide variety of positive indicators on their side:



 

What Do Egyptians Deserve from their Democracy?

Par Rouba al-Fattal le 29 octobre 2012

Al-Fatal_Ruba.jpgEgyptian human rights activists recently criticized the human rights situation in the country after the first 100 days of President's Mohamed Morsi rule. The most prominent of these criticisms focused on the attempts of the new regime, which is dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) that Morsi belongs to, to reproduce the ‘state of emergency’ which the Egyptians suffered from during Mubarak’s era.



The Problems with Nexen

Par The Hon. David Kilgour le 19 octobre 2012

Kilgour_David_bw.jpgThe proposed buy-out of Nexen Inc., Canada's sixth largest oil company, for $15.1 billion by the government-owned China National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC) obliges the Harper government to decide whether or not to approve the purchase under the undefined "net benefit" and "national security" tests in the Investment Canada Act. Here are some concerns.


Now Is the Time for Anger

Par David T. Jones le 19 octobre 2012

Jones_David_bw_new.jpgAmericans are now reaping the results of the “Arab spring.”  The out-with-the-old; in-with-the new upheavals in 2011 were supposed to demonstrate a surge of democracy, human rights, personal freedoms, and liberties akin to those in Eastern Europe, following the collapse of the Berlin Wall and the end of Soviet tyranny in 1991.  Commensurate, albeit ancillary, was the expectation that the United States, the “shining city on a hill,” as the exemplar of democracy and human rights, would be appropriately appreciated by these flower children of spring.  It would be the culmination of the Middle East “reset” epitomized by President Obama’s Cairo doctrine speech in June 2009, emphasizing U.S. respect and appreciation for Islam.

L'échec de l'Occident dans la confrontation avec les"fous d'Allah"

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 19 octobre 2012

 

Freddy_Eytan.JPGDepuis les attentats spectaculaires du 11 septembre 2001 contre l'Amérique, le combat inlassable contre le terrorisme n'a pas cessé un seul jour, mais il a fallu plus de dix ans à la CIA pour réussir à tuerle chef commanditaire, le tristement célèbre Oussama Ben Laden.
En dépit du combat tous azimuts contre l'Axe du Mal, les islamistes de tous bords, chiites et sunnites, continuent sans crainte à dicter leur loi fanatique et à propager le culte de la mort. Ces groupes extrémistes tels qu'al Qaïda rêvent d'instaurer un sinistre objectif, à savoir un califat de l'Indonésie au Nigéria dont le centre serait al Qouds…

 

Occupy Wall Street Blues

Par Akil Alleyne le 19 octobre 2012

alleyne_akyl.jpgOn my way to the subway station in mid-September, I was somewhat startled to glimpse a community newspaper headline screaming “OCCUPY’S ONE-YEAR BLUES” on a newsstand. Then I remembered that, lo and behold, the first anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street protests was fast approaching. I realized that I was momentarily taken aback by the headline because I had almost totally forgotten about Occupy Wall Street. Less than a year ago, the airwaves and the Internet were burning up with talk about this audacious and potentially game-changing new movement. Now, in the middle of an election campaign that will determine whether and how Washington will address OWS’ concerns, the movement itself seems moribund. What happened?

Le réveil macabre d'Arafat et la tragi-comique justice de François Hollande

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 19 octobre 2012

Freddy_Eytan.JPGJeudi 11 novembre 2004, 3 heures du matin, Yasser Arafat est décédé à l'hôpital des armées Percy à Clamart… Quelques heures après, sur le tarmac de la base aérienne de Villacoubay, le cercueil d'Arafat est recouvert du drapeau quadricolore palestinien et porté par huit soldats français de l'armée de terre. Au son de la marche funèbre de Chopin, trois compagnies de la Garde républicaine en tenue d'apparat rendent les honneurs…Après la sonnerie aux morts retentit l'hymne national palestinien et la Marseillaise, joués par la fanfare militaire. Des drapeaux français et palestiniens en berne flottent au vent tandis qu'un avion Airbus de l'armée de l'air s'envole avec la dépouille vers les cieux escorté par un autre avion de la République française avec, à son bord, le chef de la diplomatie…

Bet on Bibi

Par David T. Jones le 30 septembre 2012

Jones_David_bw_new.jpgIsraeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu or “Bibi” as he is widely known is not President Obama’s favorite person.  Indeed, he is so controversial, personally and politically, that the president apparently decided that it was better to meet with no foreign leaders while at the UN General Assembly speechathon than to be forced, de facto, to meet with Netanyahu.  (That Obama had time to meet with View is another story). Essentially, if he met with any leader, he would be compelled also to have a session with Netanyahu.

Expulsion of Iranian Diplomats

Par The Hon. David Kilgour le 23 septembre 2012

Kilgour_David_bw.jpgOn September 7, Canadian Friends of a Democratic Iran welcomed Foreign  Minister Baird's announcement that his government is closing the  Iranian embassy in Ottawa after removing earlier our remaining diplomats and their families from Canada's embassy in Tehran. 
Canada is no longer willing to put up with the conduct of one of the  most inhuman regimes on earth, including the ongoing intimidation of  many Canadians of origin in Iran by its embassy. Canadians and the world's peoples have a responsibility to stand in solidarity with the  struggle for dignity in Iran. I stress here too my high regard for Iranians living within and outside Iran, who believe in peace, dignity, the rule of law, and freedom of speech and religion as much as Canadians do.

Montreal Democrats Abroad Cheer Obama Nomination

Par Byron Toben le 8 septembre 2012

About 50 US Democrats (many dual citizens) gathered at Hurley`s Irish pub on September 6 to watch the final day of the national Democratic convention in North Carolina as President Barak Obama accepted his party`s nomination for a second term.

The night before, delegates from the 50 states plus Democrats Abroad had unanimously voted to nominate him. Democrats Abroad (as well as Puerto Rico, Samoa, Guam and the Virgin Islands ) may vote to nominate the president but does not have electoral votes in the general election.

Israel-Egypte: réalités et pragmatisme

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 18 juillet 2012

Freddy_Eytan.JPGJerusalem - L'élection de Mohamed Morsi est historique et révolutionnaire. Dans ce coup de théâtre de l'absurde, l'homme qui a été emprisonné par Moubarak est entré au Palais présidentiel d'un pas feutré, sur le tapis rouge et avec tous les salamalecs. Moubarak, lui, est derrière les barreaux plongé dans un coma irréversible… Tandis que le fondateur de la confrérie des Frères musulmans, Al Banna, (grand-père de Tarik Ramadan) réalise un grand rêve…et se retourne dans sa tombe dans  l'allégresse… Le grand Mufti de Jérusalem, grand défenseur de la confrérie islamique et allié d'Hitler ne peut non plus dissimuler sa joie en se frottant les mains…souillées de sang juif!

Handle with care: A fragile Afghanistan in Tokyo

Par Omar Samad le 18 juillet 2012

Ten years after the first Afghanistan reconstruction conference was held in Tokyo in 2002, Japan will host a second donors' gathering on July 8 to formulate a strategy to ensure the sustainable development of Afghanistan beyond 2014 - the date set for NATO's withdrawal. Tokyo 1 took place at a time of high hope, a clean slate, and enthusiasm for engagement, but almost no assessment of the gargantuan rebuilding task to be undertaken in a country devastated by more than two decades of warfare. There also was no insurgency to worry about. Tokyo 2 is happening at a time of uncertainty and donor fatigue, but at least the stakeholders now have a vast (and expensive) database to work with. However, the most conspicuous feature Afghans and donors will face next week and beyond, is the fragility permeating the Afghan security, political and economic sectors. Furthermore, the Taliban are now viewed as a real threat to stability.

Obama did not "lose" Canada

Par David T. Jones le 18 juillet 2012

obama_harper.jpgWashington, DC - Whenever one reads a title including “Who Lost…” you know that ax grinding is about to start with the whetstone spinning. There is a blame game to be played and guilt to be apportioned. Thus, variously, over the decades, the outraged have exclaimed “Who Lost China?” “Who Lost Vietnam?” “Who Lost Iran?” and currently, preemptively lamenting over who lost Afghanistan and/or Iraq. The author(s) always know that others are at fault and they knew better.


Le boucher de Damas face à l'impuissance des Occidentaux

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 28 mai 2012

Freddy_Eytan.JPGVoilà déjà 4 décennies que la famille Assad règne en Syrie avec une poigne de fer souillée de sang et le monde libre laisse faire dans le désarroi total. Ce régime est une dictature calquée sur le modèle soviétique de Staline. Le pouvoir syrien est fondé sur deux piliers: le socialisme du parti Baath et les liens étroits  et religieux de la communauté alaouite ancrée dans toutes les sphères de la société, de l'armée, des services de sécurité et des institutions gouvernementales. Le pouvoir d'Assad étouffe et écrase toutes les libertés des droits de l'Homme. Il  ne recule d'aucun moyen pour mettre au pas ses opposants en exerçant à leur encontre  une punition sanglante et impitoyable. Son armée de quatre cent mille hommes est principalement destinée à la répression intérieure. Les terribles massacres de Hama en février 1982 par Assad père firent plus de 20 000 morts! Ils n'étaient qu'une avant première des carnages successifs commis par Assad fils depuis le 15 mars 2011.

Loving enemies: human dignity is ultimately indivisible

Par The Hon. David Kilgour le 18 mai 2012

The words of Jesus, “Love one another as I have loved you”, link explicitly love of God and love of neighbour. The two great commandments, found in both the New Testament and the Torah, complement each other. Similar thoughts are found in the holy books of probably all other spiritual communities, certainly including Tibetan Buddhism.

Le malaise de la France

Par Amb. Freddy Eytan le 18 mai 2012

Freddy_Eytan.JPGLa sauvage tuerie de Toulouse ne peut être oubliée, elle sera longtemps ancrée dans tous les esprits en France comme en Israël. Hélas, labarbarie qui a frappé  la "ville rose" s’inscrira dans une page sombre etpeu glorieuse de la  République. Loin d’être un fait divers local oucommunautaire, la tragédie de Toulouse a franchi les frontières de l’Hexagone. Elle s'inscrit dans une vague anti-juive et anti-israéliennequi se propage à travers les continents. L'Europe des islamistesredevient le berceau de la haine du peuple élu.

There's Hope, It’s Not Over Yet: French Voters Look To Crucial Post-Presidential Legislative Vote

Par Julien Balkany le 18 mai 2012

balkany.JPGFrench voters expressed themselves at the polls democratically choosing alternation in electing Francois Hollande as President. With only the second Socialist Party president in French history, France risks once again experiencing the errors and hesitations of Socialist power at the helm. The U-turn of the last Socialist President, Francois Mitterrand, from socialist economic policy to one of austerity comes to mind.
Even prior to taking office Hollande explained in a media appearance that the fiscal state of the nation is worse than previously thought – a convenient position from which to perhaps prepare French voters for a letdown on the costly promised state spending that formed the cornerstone of his campaign.

China and the West: An Uncomfortable Connection

Par The Hon. David Kilgour le 18 mai 2012

china_west.JPGI admire the people of China greatly, including their often heroic protests against acts of misfeasance by their government. To his credit, the outgoing premier, Wen Jiabao, has spoken often about the necessity for democratic reform. He recently had a major role in blocking the advance of Bo Xilai to the nine-member Standing Committee of the Communist Party. Bo and his mentor, former President Jiang Zemin, have been among the worst offenders in the ongoing persecution of the Falun Gong movement since July, 1999.  Bo has been removed from his  posts and his wife, Gu Kailai, is under investigation concerning the murder of a British citizen. The next to go will hopefully be Zhou Yongkang, the Party head of security, who worked closely with Zemin and Bo in the persecution of Falun Gong.


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