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Peace & Socialism

International al-Quds Day – a global cause?

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Al-Quds Day, celebrated around the world by millions, is marked on the last Friday of Ramadan, coinciding with the most sacred time of Ramadan, the Night of Destiny. This year it is on July 11. This night especially empowers Muslims with God's mercy, as the starting point of Muslims' awakening and awareness in all aspects of life. Al -Quds Day was initiated in 1979 by Ayatollah Khomeini to express solidarity with the Palestinian people and oppose Zionism and Israeli occupation, especially of Jerusalem.

Its importance is starkly demonstrated by the ongoing US-Israeli schemes to make Jerusalem (al-Quds, holy city) the sole property of Israel, destroy the Muslim sacred Dome of the Rock, and by widespread aggression against all things Muslim, not only in Palestine, but from Libya to Afghanistan. Ayatollah Khomeini understood the connection between the struggle to liberate Palestine and the struggle for social justice around the world, in the firs place among Muslims. "All must know that the superpowers' aim in creating Israel does not end in the occupation of Palestine. They plan, Heaven forbid, extending the fate of Palestine to all Arab countries."

In Iran, the government sponsors and organizes the day's rallies. Al-Quds Day is also held throughout the Arab and Muslim world, Europe and North America. The popularity of al-Quds Day shows how all people who support the liberation of Palestine appreciate and approve of Iran's staunch support, the only country truly committed to helping Palestine. 

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The 'Espionage Den': American ghosts in Tehran

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The highlight to any trip to Tehran—if you can manage it—is a visit to the scene of the most spectacular hostage-taking in recent history, the US embassy, which Iranian students stormed in November 1979, holding 52 Americans hostage for 444 days, and dumping US diplomatic correspondence on the street in a spectacular premodern WikiLeak.

For Canadians and Brits, getting there is not easy. Neither country has diplomatic relations with Iran at present. Canadians must mail their passports to the Pakistani Embassy in Washington, DC, Brits must apply to the Omani Embassy in London. (Britain and Iran have only recently agreed to open consular services following a meeting between Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and British Prime Minister David Cameron at the UN in New York in September 2014). As a Canadian, visiting the Nest of Spies is no easy job—Canadians must get their visas from the Iran Interest Section of the Pakistan Embassy in Washington, DC.

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Interview on Sott.net: The 'Great Games' of the Global Elite

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http://www.blogtalkradio.com/sottnet/2014/03/30/the-historical-great-games-of-the-global-elite--interview-with-eric-walberg

Critiquing Israel: colonialism or Jewish culture?

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Fighting the enemy at times means fighting your erstwhile comrades-in-arms, writes Eric Walberg

The phenomenal success the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement has had since it began in 2005 has attracted attention from all corners of the political spectrum -- for better or for worse. Israel is scared. Israeli thinktanks have described BDS as a greater threat to Israel than armed Palestinian resistance. At the same time, at the forefront of the movement against what is now widely called Israeli apartheid are Jews -- Israeli and diaspora. This is not surprising, as Jews have traditionally been active in “political mobilisation and opinion formation”, according to Benjamin Ginsberg.

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Postmodern Imperialism: An interview with Eric Walberg

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Interview by Jonathan Reynolds, an anthropologist who writes for spikemagazine.com and author of two books on the Maya and Guatemala

Q: For a work of geopolitical history, I found the book a real ‘page-turner’.

A: Thanks. It’s gratifying that this came across. So much of the critique of imperialism is depressing and boring, and puts the reader off. The history is fascinating, if horrifying.

Q: I was impressed by the great sweep of the argument, and how the details of the history of imperialism as you write about it are integrated so well into it.

A: Again, thanks. I couldn’t have done it without the internet. I really should have put Wikipedia in the acknowledgments, although this must be treated circumspectly – it allows you to track down hundreds of details in seconds that are essential to making a credible argument. Again, much of the literature is either too detail-heavy or too generalized. In writing both my articles over the past decade, and this (and another book) over the past four years, I developed a style where I try to include as many relevant details as possible without sinking under their weight.

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Canadian Eric Walberg is known worldwide as a journalist specializing in the Middle East, Central Asia and Russia. A graduate of University of Toronto and Cambridge in economics, he has been writing on East-West relations since the 1980s.

He has lived in both the Soviet Union and Russia, and then Uzbekistan, as a UN adviser, writer, translator and lecturer. Presently a writer for the foremost Cairo newspaper, Al Ahram, he is also a regular contributor to Counterpunch, Dissident Voice, Global Research, Al-Jazeerah and Turkish Weekly, and is a commentator on Voice of the Cape radio.

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