It is a problem, this faraway little Gulf of ours. A few years ago I modified its name, I started to call it the Persian-American Gulf, but it is getting harder. The population is shifting. The princes and potentates in their little kingdoms have now imported a majority of the non-Arabic and non-Persian speaking population from South and Southeast Asia and claim it should be called, no, not the Gulf of Bengal……….. Could it be the Gulf of Mercenaries, as I suggested a year or two ago? Gulf of Wahhabis, heaven forbid? How about the Gulf of Salaf? Gulf of Foreign Military Bases? Gulf of Tribal Sectarianism?
- For example, the little oppressed repressed robbed sectarian island of Bahrain is now nearly sinking under foreign bases:
U.S Naval Base Gulf HQ – Saudi Military Base post the Spring of 2011 invasion – Even the old British colonial masters have not stopped helping the ruling gangs in their robbery and repression. They are starting a new military base – Add to all that assorted imported mercenaries/interrogators and torturers from Jordan, Pakistan, Syria (former security), Iraq (former Baathists), among other foreign places. With an occasional obscure idle English prince and princess or two paying visits to shore up the kleptocratic autocratic outpost.
- Little rich Wahhabi power Qatar where 90% of the population is temporary foreign laborers (mainly South Asian housemaids raising the kids and keeping house):
U.S. Central Command has its regional headquarters at the Al-‘Adeed base – It is now also the Muslim Brotherhood HQ (outside Turkey) – Now reports say that Turkey, under its new Ottoman Caliph Sultan Recep Erdogan, will also establish a military base in Qatar. So, the Ottomans are coming back, with a new sultan. Which might indicate that the on-again-off-again sisterly relations with the fellow Saudi Wahhabis may be heading up the proverbial ‘unsanitary creek’.
- United Arab Emirates (UAE, where some 90% of the population is composed of imported foreign laborers and housemaids), ruled by a Band of Brothers who own Abu Dhabi (lock, stock and barrel). I think it has:
British base – French base – Canadian base (sorry, it was closed over a commercial dispute) – Colombian mercenary military base (no, not FARC) – (Former) Blackwater mercenary force: mainly South American, South African, Australian, etc- Actually I have lost track: for all I know even Monaco or Vanuatu may have military bases in Abu Dhabi by now.
But I don’t have anything against friendly military bases. They can be a protective measure that started with Saddam’s Baathist brutal invasion of Kuwait in 1990. But I suspect they are not only aimed against Iraqi dangers anymore, and not only aimed against the mullahs in Iran, but probably also needed not-so-secretly to keep the sisterly Wahhabi princes next door at home. The princes are only a few tanks’ drive away, as the unhappy people of Bahrain discovered in the Spring of 2011.
As well as the dangers that may emerge from the troubles in Iraq/Jordan/Syria. Dangers that were largely created and financed by wayward Persian Gulf Islamist groups and some princes. As well as some unsettled tribal issues and risks that Gulf GCC states have experienced (attempted Saudi-backed coup in Qatar in 1998) and others may be experiencing.
Still, a Turkish military base in Qatar? But why not? After all there is a Saudi Wahhabi base in Bahrain. The Muslim Brotherhood Turkish base in Qatar could balance that.
But there is still the same nagging question that won’t go away for me: whoever the hell heard of a country welcoming a Turkish military base?
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum
“As the United States and Iran come closer to a historic nuclear deal, many US states are likely to stick with their own sanctions on Iran that could complicate any warming of relations between the long-time foes. In a little known aspect of Iran’s international isolation, around two dozen states have enacted measures punishing companies operating in certain sectors of its economy, directing public pension funds with billions of dollars in assets to divest from the firms and sometimes barring them from public contracts. In more than half those states, the restrictions expire only if Iran is no longer designated to be supporting terrorism or if all US federal sanctions against Iran are lifted – unlikely outcomes even in the case of a final nuclear accord. Two states, Kansas and Mississippi, are even considering new sanctions………….”
Several of these God-fearing fly-over states were happy when the US started shipping agricultural products to the Godless Communists of the Soviet Union. As were some other non-fly-over agricultural states on both coasts of the United States. That was years ago during the old Cold War.
Now it looks like many states, both fly-over and on the two coasts, right and left, have imposed their own ‘sanctions’ against Iran. It is not clear why this is so, since the US government has its own tough blockade. Since the Iranians never attacked Pearl Harbor nor the Twin Towers or the Pentagon, others did.
You’d think these local legislatures would be more concerned with ‘local’ stuff like economic growth, taxation, education, infrastructure, crime, racism. Rather than engaging in their own little cold wars. Could it be related to ‘political’ money and political clout from the Israeli lobby? Or could it be that they seek funds from ‘other’ sources? Could it be the effect of a new Israelite prophet of the extreme American Right and Evangelicals? All of the above? It could, it could.
I must admit my first reaction on reading the piece was an audible: WTF!!!!
My second reaction was: thank God Kansas and Mississippi (and California) don’t have long-range bombers and naval forces anywhere near the Persian Gulf.
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum
“The New York City Police Foundation received a $1 million donation from the government of the United Arab Emirates, according to 2012 tax records, the same amount the foundation transferred to the NYPD Intelligence Division’s International Liaison Program that year, according to documents obtained by The Intercept. A 2012 Schedule A document filed by the New York City Police Foundation showed a list of its largest donors, which included several major financial institutions such as JPMorgan Chase and Barclays Capital — but also a line item for the “Embassy of the United Arab Emirates.”………. Conspicuously, while the financial institutions are listed as donors on the Police Foundation website, the UAE is absent…………..’
Interesting: clearly now the UAE diplomats “can breathe” at will in the Big Apple. This deserves a resounding WTF………..
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum
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