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ARABICA - A Daily Shot Of What the Arab World is Saying/Hearing/Sharing

A R A B I C A ارابيكا

By Kristen Gillespie

LIBYA, AL QAEDA LINKS?
Tripoli military commander Abdelhakim Belhadj denies al-Qaeda fighters are among ranks of rebel forces, quoted in Al-Quds al-Arabi, a London-based daily.

LIBYA, CIA LINKS?
A Facebook group calling itself "Wikileaks Libya" posted documents exposing efforts by a number of former American intelligence officials, lobbyists and politicians to help the Gaddafi regime stop the revolution. Officials include former CIA officer Marty Martin and former military and anti-terrorism expert Neil Livingstone. The group also has documents showing that many of Gaddafi's troops refused orders to shoot their own people.

BACK TO TAHRIR
Protesters were back in Cairo's Tahrir Square for a Friday rally dubbed "Return to the Barracks." Protesters are calling on the ruling military leadership to hand over power to a civilian authority and provide a clear timetable for a quicker transition, demands that protesters say have been promised but remain unmet. Hundreds of protesters condemned the Supreme Council of the ‎Armed Forces (SCAF) SCAF for press restrictions, the extension of martial law and the trials of civilians before military courts.

ANKARA TO DAMASCUS
Turkish President Abdullah Gul's senior advisor, Ershad Hurmuzlu, told the London-based Asharq al-Awsat newspaper that "Turkey shall not stand silent in the face of what the Syrian regime is doing to its people." Riyadh al-Asaad, the commander of Syrian Free Army, now based in Turkey and engaged in guerilla warfare with Syrian forces, told the paper that "al-Asaad's regime is nearing its end" and that "the Syrian president would very soon meet the same fate as Libya's Gaddafi." Riyadh Al-Asaad said "we formed a comprehensive army with a structure command matching that of the Syria army," adding that "we seek to form the nucleus of an army capable of taking things in its own hands in order to turn it into a regular army when the regime falls."

HUNGER TO ANGER
A new song called "Jordanians' money has been stolen" lambasts official corruption and demands an immediate halt to officials' stealing from the public coffers. To a chorus of the word "unbelievable!" the video features pictures of powerful former prime ministers, advisers to King Abdullah and the former head of the omnipotent intelligence services. Lyrics include "I dream of seizing my rights," over a montage of political cartoons featuring greedy officials taking cash and snapshots from the almost-weekly anti-government protests. One features a child holding up a sign reading: "Be warned about my hunger and my anger."

October 8, 2011

photo credit: illustir

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Ideas

Why The Fate Of Iran (Like Ukraine!) Is About Something Much Bigger

Just as Ukrainians are defending the sovereignty of Europe's borders and the right to democracy, the Iranians risking their lives to protest are fighting a bigger battle for peace across the Middle East.

Photo of members of the Iranian paramilitary volunteer forces (Basij)

Members of Iranian paramilitary volunteer forces (Basij) during a meeting with Iranian Supreme leader

Kayhan-London

-OpEd-

Tumult has been a constant in human societies, alternating between periods of war and peace. Iran, my country, has had more than its fair share of turmoil.

It is universal to be hopeful that the peaceful periods would be prolonged by increased freedom in society brought about by scientific, economic and legal progress.

And it has, but mostly in the West and in countries in south-east Asia. There, they have used the force of economic development to assure their citizens a measure of peace and security, with or without democracy. This certainly is not the case in the Middle East, in many African countries and even in Latin American states run by the "anti-imperialist" Left.

Many of these places have, among other troubles affecting them, become the den of that violent and vicious ideology, Islamism.

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