Gaza and the Road to World War

In Gaza, raw brute force is on display here.  There are no apologies for what is being done to the Palestinians.  Not by Obama.  Not by Netanyahu.  Not by John Kerry or Hillary or anyone else in the establishment.  There is virtually no acknowledgement of anything called human rights.  There may be Jewish rights.  There may be American rights.  But there are no human rights.  No rights for the Palestinians.  Not one ounce of compassion for any of them.  The Palestinians have been the sacrificial lamb to the god of oil, of hegemony, of Jewish privilege. But the less obvious price we pay for power in the Middle East is our own freedoms, our own protective wall that keeps the wolf out.

9\11 and the subsequent “war on terrorism” was the defacto initiation of a police state that encompasses both Israel and the United States.  And the example has been set. Human life is as expendable as yesterday’s leftover lunch.  How bad can the wolf be?  The Jewish-Israeli-American model for taking power and property that is coveted from those who possess them tells our children to be just like them, to take life, property and the blood of those who we simply don’t like.  And I don’t see anyone trying to turn this moral ship around.  The state has become an ancient primitive instrument of otherwise civilized men’s thirst for the uncivilized, that which observes no law but self-preservation and greed.

Obama’s unequivocal support for Israel, shown in his response to a Florida student this past week, which became viral on Facebook, demonstrates just how far this administration has gone in betraying the dearest fundamental beliefs we have all regarded as the very pillars of democracy.  It shows how really weak Obama is in the face of the Jewish lobby.  He is unwilling to take the moral high ground. He is bullied by his own fears. He is a coward.  Perhaps he knows he will be little more than road kill if he challenges the Jewish establishment, with their tentacles in everything from banking to intelligence to arms trade.  He be a dead duck if he doesn’t answer to that. And maybe his wife and children. It is only much greater men like Martin Luther King who are willing to make that sacrifice.

Nevertheless, the gross, vulgar, brutal and inhumane assault of Israel upon the Palestinians is obvious to everyone in the world.  Four Latin American countries – Chile, Peru, Brazil and El Salvador – have recalled their ambassadors to Israel. Bolivia has declared Israel a terrorist regime.   64 public figures, 7 Nobel laureates, have called for an arms embargo on Israel similar to that imposed upon South Africa.  Tutu, Chomsky, Waters, Pappe, and others have accused the country of ‘war crimes and possible crimes against humanity.’ There have been massive demonstrations around the globe. Yet it continues, and the level of the assault is rising, and is not being scaled back.

This is sheer arrogance.  How could one group of people, upon whom such consideration has been showered by the world in order to give them a home free from persecution, manifest such evil?  The paradox is unfathomable.

A poll published by Tel Aviv university on Tuesday found 95% of Israeli Jews felt the offensive was justified. Only 4% believed too much force had been used. As much as 57% believed that not enough force was being used.  Breitbart

This is the road to world war.  The policies established here are a clear precedent for just about anything you can imagine.  When the soul has been eviscerated, the empty shell of the monster that remains only  wants to maim, to kill, to dehumanize all else that lives. Something has been let loose upon the world that sooner or later must be challenged.  It isn’t just the killing of thousands of Palestinians.  It’s the idea, the obscene value, of how the state may regard life. And it will not be easy.

Palestine and Kashmir: Brothers in Sorrow

What all of us are experiencing first hand with the widespread networking of social media are the excruciatingly brutal effects of one nation’s attempt to oppress another through widespread bombing of mothers and children, schools, hospitals, and playgrounds.  Israel’s murderous campaign against Gaza expresses something much larger than either of them, which is that this world is clearly divided along lines that offer authority and dignity to some at the expense of others.  Some of us are in one camp, some in the other.  It’s the 1%ers vs the 99% of the rest of us.  Most of us sit back and think, gee, too bad about you guys. Wish we could do something,  not realizing that the wolf is at our doorstep too.

In the case of Kashmir, those same lines appear, drawn around the borders of Kashmir in much the same way that they are drawn around Gaza.  Gaza is notoriously known as an open air prison, where its infrastructure lies shattered in ruins, where there is no water and almost no electricity, and where 100s of thousands are now homeless and suffering the wounds of war inflicted by Israel, a lawless non-state with power that far extends its ability to intelligently comprehend its use and ramifications.

And curiously Kashmir has suffered a similar fate drawn out over the same lifespan and historic period as Palestine due to the inept withdrawal of the British from both territories in 1947.  It is also now an open air prison.   In both cases, an alien invader has taken up occupation of the land and laid claim to it.  In both cases, 100s of thousands have died as victims of useless purposeless slaughter, rapes,  disappearances, and imprisonment, and the persistent terrorizing of the entire nation,  where racism has been stirred up where it did not exist before, and where the means to live in dignity as normal human beings has been completely removed.  In both cases, the intelligentsia, the entrepreneurs, the innovators, the doctors and lawyers, and all those who could bring wealth to the people, have been driven out, and what is left is an underage population of people stricken by poverty and helplessness.   In both cases, Israel plays a role in the criminal brutalizing of the population with the consequent radicalization of peoples who would not take this lying down.  In both cases, international agreements establishing the rights of both parties have been ignored.

Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, Secretary General, World Kashmir Awareness, in his submission to the United Nations Working Group which is meeting this week at its headquarters in New York, raised the issue of India’s oppression of Kashmir again, as he has done repeatedly in the past in his long career as Kashmir’s ambassador with the hope that the United Nations will look at its own resolutions made time and time again on the conflict since it began in 1947.  A somewhat detailed statement of his presentation examining the history  follows, and takes the view that a deeper consideration of economics would bring sense to the issue and help heal the bitter strife .  An oppressed nation cannot contribute to the wealth of the oppressor, and the oppressor would stand to gain much by a return of health and vitality to the people allowed to freely govern their own affairs.

Fai Puts Kashmir on the United Nations agenda this week

ghulamnabifai_thumb.jpgWashington, D.C. July 25, 2014.     “Economics is not a zero sum game, but a win-win game. Prosperity is mutually reinforcing and beneficial between all parties competing on a level playing field.”

The statement was made by Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, Secretary General, World Kashmir Awareness, in his submission to the United Nations Working Group which is meeting this week at its headquarters in New York.

Fai expressed in his submission that he hoped “to offer is an unstarry-eyed view of the fate of self-determination in Kashmir; and, the indispensability of convincing India that its national and economic security would be strengthened, not weakened, by ending its military occupation.”

“Self-determination,” he said, “is the act of a people, expressing their free will to control and participate in their nation’s destiny. A people must be free to express their will without interference or threat of interference from a controlling authority not of the people’s design. This includes alien domination, foreign occupation and colonial rule.”

“Self- determination,’ Fai said, “is a principle that has been developed in philosophic thought and practice for the last several hundred years. It is an idea that has caused people throughout the world to rise up and shed the chains of oppressive governments at great risk. Self-determination is the act of a people, expressing their free will to control and participate in their nation’s destiny. A people must be free to express their will without interference or threat of interference from a controlling authority not of the people’s design. This includes alien domination, foreign occupation and colonial rule. The applicability of the principle of self-determination to the specific case of Jammu and Kashmir has been explicitly recognized by the United Nations. It was upheld equally by India and Pakistan when the Kashmir dispute was brought before the Security Council by the Government of India on December 31, 1947”

Kashmiris enjoy a right to self-determination. Kashmir’s legal history entitles it to self-determination from Indian domination every bit as much as Eritrea’s historical independence entitled it to self-determination from Ethiopian domination. The human rights violations in Kashmir also militate in favor of self-determination every bit as much as Yugoslavia’s human rights violations and ethnic cleansing created a right to self-determination in Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Macedonia, and Kosovo. Kashmir’s history of social and religious tranquility further bolsters its claim to self-determination every bit as much as East Timor’s history of domestic peace before Indonesia’s annexation in 1975 entitled it to self-determination in 1999.

Fai explained that Kashmir was overwhelmingly Muslim, with Pandits, Buddhists, and Sikhs featured as welcome religious minorities. The ecumenical religious atmosphere in Kashmir found expression in inter-religious friendships, neighborhoods, businesses, and mutual celebration or respect of religious holidays. In other words, Kashmir was neither convulsed by religious strife, nor by religious extremists preaching fundamentalism from every mosque. The Maharaja ruling over Kashmir, however, was an oppressive Hindu whose tyranny had sparked an indigenous insurgency. The then Prime Minister of India, Pandit Nehru, had voiced a consensus view that sovereignty in princely states like Kashmir had devolved on their respective peoples as of August 15, 1947; and, that the peoples’ voice should prevail in a plebiscite over the sovereignty ambitions of ruling maharajas in cases of conflict. In Kashmir, Nehru initially championed a plebiscite to determine its sovereign destiny. But the Prime Minister and his successors reneged on their international law obligation when they realized Kashmir would never vote accession to India in a free and fair election. A commanding majority of Kashmiris covet independence, democracy, the rule of law and religious pluralism.

“India’s economy would grow, not contract, with an independent Kashmir. The end of turmoil in that country would attract investment in the region. The free movements of goods and labor between Kashmir and its neighbors could be negotiated. Economics is not a zero sum game, but a win-win game. Prosperity is mutually reinforcing and beneficial between all parties competing on a level playing field,” Fai added.

He expressed hope that in the interim, several measures should be taken to ease the misery and tensions in Kashmir. Human rights organizations should be given greater access. India’s security forces should be thinned. All political prisoners should be released. Emergency laws which give India’s security forces immunity for human rights crimes should be repealed. The Cease-fire Line should be monitored by an independent third party, such as the United Nations or the European Union. Kashmiri leaders should be permitted free exchanges across the CFL, and Kashmiri exiles should be allowed to return without hindrance or retaliation.

Kashmiri Americans Observed July 13th As the Martyrs Day: Dr. Fai

ghulamnabifai_thumb.jpgWashington, D.C. July 13, 2014. The Kashmiri Americans join the worldwide Kashmiri community to observe “Martyr’s Day”, in memory of 22 Kashmiris killed by Dogra troops on this day in 1931. The ‘Martyrs Day’ memorializes all those innocent victims, nearly 100,000, “who have been forcibly silenced by the occupation forces that erupted two and half decades ago,” said Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, Secretary General of the World Kashmir Awareness.

Fai expressed concern over the on going tragic situation in Kashmir because all available evidence testifies that human rights violations are systematic, deliberate, and officially sanctioned. India has given its forces powers to shoot to kill and the license to abuse the people in whatever ways they like in order to suppress the popular movement for basic human rights and self-determination.

He emphasized, ‘India trembles at any attempt to resolve the Kashmir crisis because she is frightened by its outcome.’ When a former Defense Minister, Krishna Menon, was questioned as to why India would never hold a free self-determination election in Kashmir, he confessed that all of India’s political leaders knew it would lose. And would 700,000 soldiers be needed in Kashmir if the main opponents to India’s occupation were but a handful of outside “extremists”? The question answers itself.

Fai questioned the statement of India’s foreign ministry spokesman who said that Kashmir was an integral part of India. Kashmir is not an integral part of India, nor are Kashmiris separatists, he underlined. Because under all international agreements between India and Pakistan, negotiated by the United Nations and endorsed by the Security Council, Kashmir does not belong to any member country of the United Nations. So, the claim that Kashmir is an integral part of India does not stand. The people of Kashmir are not and cannot be called separatists because they cannot secede from a country to which they have never acceded to in the first place.

Even one of India’s well-known author, Ms. Arundhati Roy confirmed it by saying ‘It’s (Kashmir) not ever been really a part of India, which is why it’s ridiculous for the Indian government to keep saying it’s an integral part of India.’

Fai discounted the United States hopes that the Kashmir dispute could be settled through bilateral peaceful talks between India and Pakistan. He recounted the litany of failed bilateral efforts and said that the people of Kashmir have steadfastly maintained that tripartite talks are the only way to resolve the Kashmir issue.

We hope that the United States and the international community will realize that what is at stake in the dispute is not only the survival of the people of Kashmir but also the peace and stability in the region of South Asia, Fai stressed.

Jews, Israel and the Seeds of Prejudice

In the context of the current reign of terror and devastation being brought upon Palestine, I don’t think there’s a word in existence that would describe how ugly and utterly depraved the state of Israel seems to me, as well as all those who support it.  I searched online for some graphic that would come close to describing this monster as it appears to me, and nothing even comes close. And then we have the prevaricators who step up to the plate with comments about how there are Jews both in Israel and elsewhere who don’t agree with what Israel is doing, and do speak out against it. I know. The minute you say something bad about Israel, we have to hear the apologists and all about the exceptions who don’t go along.  I have Jewish friends, and I would never consciously rank them with such horror…  But let me tell you something.  There is little that can be said to overcome the fact that this is a gang of thieves and murderers who commit all their evil deeds in the name of all Jews for Jews and by Jews, and that has created a prejudice in me that is very hard to deal with.  I know I shouldn’t have bad feelings toward all Jews, and I can intellectualize it, but emotionally, when I hear the word Jew, something in me wants to puke.  I am personally not to blame for what America does in its support of this travesty, because I’m in no position to do anything about it, and I speak out against it constantly. And I do not hold all Jews accountable either.  But Israel has planted the seeds of prejudice by their actions, and prejudice is not a rational being.  It too is a monster. There are little Hitlers in all of us, and I hope for all our sakes that Israel is destroyed utterly and completely by whatever means fate brings it.    .  .

Is dislocation of UN Office a path to ‘Insaniyat” (Humanity) or a broken promise?

ghulamnabifai_thumb.jpgby Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai
Secretary General
World Kashmir Awareness
Washington, D.C.
July 11, 2014

 

On July 8, 2014, the Spokesman of Indian Ministry of External Affairs made a formal statement saying, “As far as we (India) are concerned the UNMOGIP (United Nations Military Observer Group in India & Pakistan) has outlived its relevance. This is a consistent stance that we have articulated on several occasions since the Shimla accord.”

What is the legal ground of the spokesman’s pronouncement? Christopher Hitchens has made it easy to understand when he said; ““Perhaps you notice how the denial is so often the preface to the justification.” And George R.R. Martin confirms it by saying “Most men would rather deny a hard truth than face it.”

The spokesman has conveniently forgotten that India and Pakistan are signatories to various United Nations Security Council resolutions. These resolutions constitute an agreement because, unlike most resolutions of the Security Council, their provisions were first negotiated with the parties and, it was only after their written consent was obtained that they were adopted by the Security Council.

These resolutions are binding on both India and Pakistan to respect the verdict of the people of Kashmir to be obtained through a free vote under the impartial supervision of the United Nations. India, however, recognizing that the people of Kashmir would never freely vote accession to India; it contrived excuse after excuse to frustrate a plebiscite. One of the excuses is that Security Council resolutions have been superseded by the Simla Agreement.

The implication is false because it would run counter to a standing principle of international relations which is set out in Article 103 of the Charter of the United Nations (accepted by every Member of the United Nations, including India). The Article says: “In the event of a conflict between the obligations of the Members of the United nations under the present Charter and their obligations under any other international agreement, their obligations under the present Charter shall prevail”

What, then, is the relevance of the Simla Agreement as far as instituting a peace process between India and Pakistan, fully recognizing Kashmir’s inherent right of self-determination, is concerned?

First, it may be that the Simla Agreement is being invoked because of lack of knowledge about its actual terms and the circumstances in which it was signed. India is taking full advantage of this factor to spread the misinformation that the Simla Agreement absolves her from the responsibility of striving for a settlement of the dispute. By citing the Simla Agreement at this stage, or encouraging others to do so, India obviously seeks to prevent those basic issues of the dispute being addressed that were fully taken into account by the United Nations.

Second, despite the circumstance of the Simla Agreement, the Agreement nowhere precludes a settlement of the Kashmir dispute along the lines laid down by the United Nations with the consent of both India and Pakistan. Nor does it require that the United Nations be by-passed in the effort towards a settlement. On the contrary, it expressly says that the relations between the two countries shall be governed by the principles and purposes of the Charter of the United Nations. The Agreement thus reinforces the obligations of both India & Pakistan to achieve a settlement in accordance with the resolutions endorsed by the Security Council resolutions and, if their bilateral efforts fail, to turn to the United Nations for assistance. Nothing would be more contrary to the Charter — and, therefore, to the Simla Agreement itself — than to bar recourse to the United Nations.

The spokesman needs to understand that a sincere and serious effort towards a just settlement of the Kashmir dispute must squarely deal with the realities of the situation and fully respond to the people’s rights involved in it. The Simla Agreement does neither. Indeed, it was not intended to do so. A peace process that ignores the wishes of the people of Kashmir and is designed to sidetrack the United Nations will not only prove to be an exercise in futility but can also cause incalculable human and political damage to all parties concerned.

Justice Farooqi was a Synonym for courage and moral power: Dr. Fai

ghulamnabifaiDr. Fai expressed condolences on the demise of Justice Mufti Baha-ud-Din Farooqi who breathed his last on Saturday, July 5, 2014 at his residence in the Capitol city of Srinagar. Inna Lillah-e-Wa- Inna Ilahi Rajioon.

Justice Farooqi, ex Chief Justice of Jammu & Kashmir High Court was a renowned and eminent Jurist who rendered his services for upholding the human rights, human dignity and judicial fairness in the State of Jammu & Kashmir. His advocacy of the cause of Kashmir at the corridors of power during his visit to Washington has had a lasting impact on the policy makers, where he made a compelling case against the India’s stand on Kashmir. May Allah (s.w.t.) place his soul in Janatul Firdous and may He give Sabr to the family! Ameen.