Category Archives: United Nations International Organizations

Nuclear Prince: Saudi Ambassador to Israel and AIPAC……..

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“‘If Iran has ability to enrich uranium… we’ll want the same,’ former head of Saudi intelligence says, warning a nuclear deal with Iran could spur nuclear proliferation in Gulf. Any terms that world powers grant Iran under a nuclear deal will be sought by Saudi Arabia and other countries, risking wider proliferation of atomic technology, a senior Saudi prince warned on Monday in a BBC interview. “I’ve always said whatever comes out of these talks, we will want the same,” said Prince Turki al-Faisal, who has previously served as head of Saudi intelligence and Riyadh’s ambassador to Washington and London but is no longer a government official……………”

Sounds fair enough: everybody has the right to peaceful (and safe) nuclear energy. As long as they stick to Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) rules to ensure peaceful use, as the Iranians claim they are doing. The problem is: the Saudis need to close a few of their ubiquitous Shari’a colleges and expand the sciences. Re-educate all these Wahhabi clerics-in-the-making to become scientists. That takes time, maybe a generation or two before they are nuclear-ready. Or they can take the usual easy way: offer many millions and buy a few foreign scientists.

Prince Turki al-Faisal al Saud has become the de facto Saudi ambassador to Israel, and to AIPAC. Saying and doing things the other, more official princes can’t say or do publicly, especially about the ‘nuclear’ issue. A ‘good cop, bad cop‘ number for the Wahhabi faithful. So, maybe he will also one day ask for the “same thing” that Israel is believed to have (although Israel has never signed the NPT). Like about 100+ reported nuclear warheads, ready to go. Just to protect the Islamic Holy Sites from who knows what……..

Mohammed Haider Ghuloum                         Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

Khamenei on Washington: Deceit, Disintegration, Backstabbing, and a Zionist Clown……

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“Ayatollah Khamenei called the Republicans’ letter to Tehran ‘the ultimate degree of the collapse of political ethics and the U.S. system’s internal disintegration. The GOP’s insistence that any deal struck by president Obama could be null and void when he leaves office is a sign of America’s ‘tricks and deceits’. ………… The Supreme said a ‘Zionist clown’ had delivered a speech in Washington…………….”

The Ayatollah also knows a lot about American politics. He is not as naive and ignorant as he seems to Westerners. He has been around, knows the world. He is himself multi-ethnic and knows several languages, at least three, probably four or five: much more than any senator or member of Congress. He is just applying some new diplomatic pressure here, with the other world powers, especially the Europeans, in mind. With the the help of some foolish Republican senators who were too blinded by their own partisan passions to worry about the national interest.

One more thing: he is right about at least one thing. An Israeli clown did make a speech in Washington earlier this month. A repetitive stale speech.

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A Fatwa on the Nuclear Deal: What If……..

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From the Netanyahu speech and the orgasmic reaction of the members of the U.S Congress, we have learned that it all has little to do with the nuclear issue as far as Israel and its Washington lobby are concerned. It is more about forcing a certain foreign policy path on the Obama administration so that it would try to force certain regional policies on Iran. Which means it is aimed at certain failure and increasing tensions in the Middle East, possibly leading to another war against yet another Muslim country. But Netanyahu has no intention of waging a futile war alone: he wants to drag the United States into it. Which might mean creating and inviting Shi’a extremists to open a second front against the West. Great, so much for the ‘war on terror’. 

What about the rest of the world? The Germans, Russians, French, Chinese, British, and billions of others who are not Netanyahu cheerleaders? The rest of the world that is not necessarily captive to moneyed American or Israeli lobbyists, powerful special interests, Rapture-obsessed evangelical Christian Zionists, and bigoted Las Vegas tycoons? Those who are truly concerned about the nuclear issue and have no other ‘foreign’ agenda imposed on them?
If they like ‘the deal’ but Washington is too afraid to accept it? They are likely to reject American dictates, which in that case would be Israeli dictates. The sanctions will get much weaker, since they will become even more unilaterally American. Can the extreme right wing in America, the half of the government that is a proxy for the extreme Israeli right wing, force its agenda and the Iran blockade on the rest of the industrial world? On the rest of the world? Highly unlikely………..

So my fatwa is that failure of the talks will very likely also weaken the Western blockade as well. So shall it be written, so shall it be done. Probably……

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WTF? UN to Sanction Yemen Opposition Leaders, Charles and Hollande in Saada………

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“Lithuanian U.N. Ambassador Raimonda Murmokaite, chair of the council’s Yemen sanctions committee, said all 15 members had agreed to blacklist Saleh and Houthi rebel military leaders Abd al-Khaliq al-Huthi and Abdullah Yahya al Hakim. The three men are now subject to a global travel ban and asset freeze. Saleh has denied seeking to destabilize Yemen and his party warned after a meeting on Thursday that any sanctions on the former president or “even waving such a threat would have negative consequences on the political process.”…….. The United States submitted a formal request to the Yemen sanctions committee a week ago for Saleh and the Houthi leaders to be the first people designated…………”

Years ago some politicians in the United States often warned of “world government” encroaching on national sovereignty. They were usually conservative Republicans who were terrified of a UN-type world regime that would interfere in domestic US affairs. Some of them opined that it was part of an international conspiracy to dominate the world. They were considered ‘the crazies‘ in mainstream US media in those days. Now some of them run the asylum show.

Isn’t this exactly what the UN and the USA are doing now in places like Yemen? And can the UN really force various opposed Yemeni factions to follow international dictate on internal matters? And why does the UN and world powers not try to solve other ‘domestic’ problems with sanctions, as in Egypt and Bahrain? 

I have posted here before that sanctioning the Houthis is a meaningless  gesture. Unless it is a prelude to a more muscular intervention against them. As far as I know the Houthis don’t own properties in Europe or New York; they don’t shop in Paris and London, and they don’t spend their vacations in Nice or Geneva. They certainly don’t purchase their weapons from the West; otherwise Mr. Cameron and Prince Chuck Al Windsor and M. Hollande would be as regular visitors to Saada as they are to Riyadh and Abu Dhabi.

Mohammed Haider Ghuloum

The Angry Euro-Centric International Community: Torn Between Ukraine and Gaza…….

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Headline today in the Huffington Post: “Global” anger at Russia grows……..

Odd: I look around the globe, the media in several languages, and I don’t see worldwide intense anger. There is sympathy and a desire to uncover the culprit(s), but no anger. I see some regional real anger and some regional pretend anger, and I see mostly some politics mixed with anger, and it is focused on a particular part of the globe. In recent years, it seems that the world has gone back to the old Euro-centric order, just as it did during the eighteenth and nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Apparently when the angry “international community” or “the world” is mentioned the acronyms that matter are NATO and EU. Forget about UNO and BRICS and PIGS and TRICKS and SCO and WTF and the rest.

No wonder the angry “international community” is never angry when third world airlines are shot down, especially when shot down by NATO missiles (Iran Air 655, Libyan Air).

I guess “global” here means the West: “European Union” or “North American”. The Rest Of the World, almost 85% of it,  are just that, ROW, and not part of the “global community”, since we don’t see much if any of the same “outrage” across Asia (outside Malaysia) or Africa or Latin America, or the Middle East. The same applies to “The International Community” that we often see in Western headlines. The Int’l Community is often angry at someone or the other (Russia, China, Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Freedonia, etc). The “Int’l Community” is never ever angry at the European Union or the USA or Canada. And why should they?

Now speaking of “global” outrage, and speaking of Gaza……….


Mohammed Haider Ghuloum

Human Rights Humor: Saudi Arabia, Russia, Norway, and the UN………


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“At a session of the United Nations’ Universal Periodic Review — where a selection of member states have their performance on human rights assessed — Norway’s record came under the microscope. The conspicuous critics at this Geneva meeting? Russia and Saudi Arabia, members of the United Nations’ 47-nation Human Rights Council and well-known paragons of global norms and freedoms, of course.
Representatives from Saudi Arabia accused Norway of endangering the religious rights of Muslims in the country. …………… Saudi Arabia, of course, is notorious for its draconian laws that, among other harsh measures, ban women from driving, curb the religious expression of non-Muslim non-Wahhabi minorities…..…….”

I must have been away to
another planet. Now, coming back to Earth, I find that Saudi
Arabia is angry at Norway for lack of religious tolerance and freedom. During
my absence on that other faraway planet the Wahhabi kingdom must have allowed
the establishment of churches and temples and synagogues. The religious police
must have stopped raiding private homes and arresting people for decorating
their own private Christmas trees. They must have stopped crucifying and
beheading people for apostasy. Freedom of speech and religion must have become
enshrined in constitutional amendments within a Saudi Wahhabi Bill of Rights.
Wait a minute, there is no Saudi constitution………. 

is the Universal Law of Petroleum that drives all this Saudi drivel. As for Mr. Putin, that former
KGB man could not give a fig about religion…….


BYOT Party in Montreux: your Pocket Guide to Geneva on Syria………


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The Geneva (actually Montreux) conference on Syria was finally held, after many false starts. Ministers, princes, potentates, and rebels all showed up. They say nearly thirty countries and organizations were invited, or just
crashed the party. It is not clear why 30, unless they mean all the
disparate and desperate Syrian opposition groups and militias and
various Arab potentates. The countries and parties and their interests
could have been represented by only three parties: Secretary Kerry for the
Friends of the Syrian Opposition, the Syrian regime, Russia for the
Friends of the Syrian Regime, and Secretary General Moony of the UN. Oh,
make that four parties: I left out France, since the French still have
the usual Anglo-Saxon complex and need to have their own representative.
It was like a BYOT party at some college. Here is a summary of the highlights and the various positions:

  • The Syrian Opposition (some of it) to Bashar Al Assad: ‘Step down and let us take over’.
  • The Qatari Minister: ‘Yeah, you’re supposed to be a dead man walking. Three years now!’.
  • Syrian government reps: ‘ForgetAboutIt! We are running in the elections‘.
  • Saudi Prince Saud Al Faisal (to Saudi-appointed Al Jarba of the Syrian SNC): ‘Your Excellency Mr. President
  • Syria’s Waleed Al Mu’allim (muttering): ‘LOL, president of the Syrian-Turkish border?’
  • Ahmad Al Jarba: ‘LOL in your Baathist eye. I am the legitimate president of the SNC. Ask His Highness the Prince. It says so on my Twitter account @PresidentJarba’.
  • Secretary John Kerry: ‘We are here to negotiate the overthrow of Al Assad and the easing into power of the opposition, wtf they are‘.
  • Ban Ki-Moon (of the UN): ‘It is a good thing I withdrew my invitation to the Iranians. They would have disrupted the conference, and we would not have gotten any results‘.
  • Hassan Rouhani of Iran: ‘Davos is fun-ner than Montreux or Geneva. Cooler egotistical bastards here, but count your fingers after every handshake‘.
  • Al Zawahri from some cave in Pakistan: ‘Next year or the year after in Geneva‘.


Syria: the Strange Ban Ki-Moon Geneva Rollercoaster Ride, Hollande’s Polygamy………..


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A strange series of events regarding the Syrian civil war this past weekend:

  • Late weekend United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon gives a presser and invites Iran to attend the Geneva talks on Syria, surprising some of the “Friends of the Syrian Opposition”.
  • The Obama Administration professes surprise and sort of objects strongly, only sort of.
  • Saudi princes and other potentates object strongly but not openly.
  • Their proxy Mr. Al Jarba objects (he calls himself, I think rather presumptuously, @PresidentJarba on Twitter). Opposition groups and militias and gangs and kidnappers threaten to boycott the meeting and keep Assad in power for five more years.
  • Mufti Shaikh Al Al objects, or he should if he knows what is good for him. But he declines to issue a fatwa.
  • The Israelis probably object on the principle that whatever helps Iran is bad for them, and vice versa. Or maybe I just think so, my knee-jerk reaction.
  • Al Qaeda and its Syrian fronts also object, or so I assume. 
  • Francois Hollande of France probably also objects, as does his current main squeeze, his former main squeeze, and his future main squeezes (the French can be more polygamous than we can be, and often they are, but they don’t admit it).
  • My suspicious mind is almost certain that the prime minister of Bahrain (44 or so years in office and going) also objects strongly through his corpulent foreign minister who is also his nephew or cousin. I still can’t figure out WTF he has got to do with all this.
  • So, guess what happens next? Bingo! Ban Ki-Moon suddenly implodes: he discovers overnight that maybe Iran should not attend Geneva. He withdraws his invitation for Iran to the Geneva meeting on Syria. A dis-invitation under pressure.
  • The Iranians, who would love to attend, act as if they are not interested in attending. They go further: after being dis-invited they claim that that they would not attend a meeting
    that imposes conditions and prerequisites on them.

  • Saudi semi-official Alarabiya headlines that now the Syrian ‘opposition’ groups will attend Geneva, some of them for the talks, others to buy good Swiss chocolate at duty-free prices. Actually they would attend or not if and when their Saudi bosses tell them to.
  • End of the story for now, until the next Syria meeting later this year. Or maybe sometime next year, or the year after.


International Tantrums: From UN to UNESCO, When Governments Don’t Get Their Way……..


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“UNESCO has suspended the voting rights of the United States and Israel, two years after both countries stopped paying dues to the U.N.’s cultural arm in protest over its granting full membership to the Palestinians. The U.S. decision to cancel its funding in October 2011 was blamed on U.S. laws that prohibit funding to any U.N. agency that implies recognition of the Palestinians’ demands for their own state. Israel also pulled its funding, objecting to what it called unilateral attempts by the Palestinians to gain recognition of statehood…………….”

Ref. my Saturday posting on Saudi Arabia.
I pointed to my Saudi source that her government is not unique in that respect, in getting upset and walking out screaming when it doesn’t get its way. I suggested the Al Saud may have learned this from Western governments in recent years. I reminded her of past threats to stop funding the UN and the decision to stop funding UNESCO if it upsets Israel and hence AIPAC, which it apparently did when it granted the Palestinians member status. I especially reminded her of the UNESCO episode and how the Obama administration now regrets losing its vote and influence in that organization after withdrawing funding (which they now realize means Israel losing its influence as Susan Rice hinted).

I also reminded her of Western media and thinkers and pundits complaining that sometime the international organizations seem to take into account the rest of the world, all 5-6 billion of it, more than the Western governments that represent about 600 million. I reminded her of the famous French pop-philosopher Bernard-Henri Levy who said earlier this year that a “bunch of gangsters control the UN Security Council”, that was when China and Russia and others refused to vote for military action in Syria. She agreed with me that it is likely the princes have learned a lesson from that on how to have an international tantrum when they don’t get their way.

I forgot to tell her that the Obama administration withdrew its funding of UNESCO in 2011, only about one year before the 2012 general elections (elections in the USA not in Israel). At that time, it seemed like a good idea, electorally if not from a principled point of view.


The UNESCO Fiasco and LBJ’s Tent and Tail Wagging Dog………


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“Although the US says it favors a state of Palestine, in fact it has been rather gleefully helping screw over the Palestinians since 1948 and has de facto gone along with virtually any new outrage the Israelis could think up to inflict on them, from putting the children of Gaza ‘on a diet’ to gradually usurping the best land and water resources on the West Bank. Whenever the international community tried to pressure Israel to stop, and to allow stateless Palestinians to have the basic rights of citizenship and property, the US used its veto at the UNSC to ensure the Palestinians were kept down. Now, for the sake of making sure no one recognizes Palestine as a state, the US has cut off its $22 million a year dues to Unesco and has lost its voting rights on the committee. This childish behavior, of taking your marbles and going home if you can’t win the playground game………………….”

It happened in 2011, toward the end of the first Obama term. I have noted here in the past that this administration (Obama) is more under the Israeli spell, nay influence, than any other in American history has ever been under the influence of a ‘foreign’ power.
This UNESCO fiasco is just one example of trying to subvert international organizations, especially the United Nations and its affiliates. Clearly deliberately losing influence within the organization was a mistake. As Lyndon Johnson is quoted to have said (and I know I am paraphrasing LBJ here): it is better to be inside the tent pissing out than outside the tent pissing in.