Category Archives: Japan

Shinzo and Donald: the Riddle of a Nobel Farce……

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Anatomy of a Farce:

Trump claims Japan’s prime minister Shinzo Abe has nominated him (Trump) for the Nobel Prize for Peace…

Abe refuses to confirm or deny Trump’s claim (got that?)…

Abe (not a GOP-er) doesn’t want to enrage Trump…

Can you solve this riddle?:
(Hint 1: it summarizes the past two years).
(Hint 2: a k a ‘the Obama complex’: Obama has a Nobel Prize, Trump will never get one)
(Hint 3: general inferiority complex).


M. Haider Ghuloum

The Grim Jordanian Luck of Kenji Goto………

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Kenji Goto, the Japanese being held hostage by ISIS is lucky in one respect. The other hostage whose release is being negotiated now is a Jordanian air force pilot from a prominent (humorless) Jordanian tribe. My unreliable Jordanian source reports that there has been a lot of pressure from his clan for a deal to get him out through a deal with the terrorists. She added something roughly to the effect that: “Nobody in Jordan gives a rat’s ass about Kenji Goto. They want Mu’ath…“, only more colorful.
If Mu’ath is still alive. If not, then Kenji Goto’s luck, and Sajida Al Rishawi’s luck, may run out…….

Mohammed Haider Ghuloum                          Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

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Western Delusions about Kenji Goto, Al Rishawi, and Jordan……….

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“The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) demanded the release of a woman being held in Jordan for allegedly attempting to carry out a series of terrorist attacks in 2005, Reuters news agency reported. In a broadcast carried by the Al-Bayan radio, which transmits in areas the group controls, ISIS described Sajida al-Rishawi as “our sister” asking for her release in exchange for the freedom of Kenji Goto, a Japanese hostage held by the militants. Rishawi is a would-be Iraqi female suicide bomber on death row in Jordan in connection with triple hotel bomb attacks in Amman that killed 60 people…………….”

Sometimes Western pundits and media experts seem delusional about the Middle East. Take the example of the remaining Japanese hostage held by ISIS, Kenji Goto. There is serious talk among Western ‘experts’ that perhaps the humorless Kingdom of Jordan might release an Iraqi terrorist in exchange for him, as the terrorists have demanded. They mean an Iraqi woman, Sajida Al-Rishwai, who participated in bombings in Amman hotels that killed tens of people during the days of Al-Zarqawi. She claims she was coerced by her husband, which is very likely, although she failed to detonate it in the end.
They actually think that Jordan could release the woman, Rishawi, as ISIS is demanding in exchange for the Japanese man. I have some bad news for them.
Can you imagine the uproar in Jordan if the woman is released in order to free a Japanese hostage in Syria? At a time when ISIS is holding a Jordanian Air Force pilot who was shot down over Syria? If the Jordanian pilot is indeed a hostage and not just a defector from the humorless Jordanian Air Force. Which reminds me: we have not read much about how he happened to end up in the hands of ISIS.

Mohammed Haider Ghuloum                          Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

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Honor, Dishonor, Seppuku, and Roadkill: from South Korea to Arabia and Beyond……….


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“The vice-principal of a South Korean high school who accompanied hundreds of pupils on a ferry that capsized has committed suicide, police said on Friday, as hopes faded of finding any of the 274 missing alive. The Sewol, carrying 476 passengers and crew, capsized on Wednesday on a journey from the port of Incheon to the southern holiday island of Jeju. Kang Min-gyu, 52, had been missing since Thursday. He appeared to have hanged himself with his belt from a tree outside a gym in the port city of Jindo where relatives of the people missing on the ship, mostly children from the school………………”

This South Korean school principal thought he was responsible for the deaths of some 300 students and others in the capsized ferry, and decided to pay the price in his own way. He took his own life. Of course not all Koreans are like that: most are not like that. Someone like Kim Jong Un of the DPRK only gets fatter, he and his family, on the death and suffering he visits on his people.

look to our region, and responsibility. We might find a humane way for ‘regime change’, well, a relatively humane way, at least from the point of view of the masses: 

  • Arab leaders lose wars (they always lose wars against everybody else except their own peoples and maybe against the local swine as happened in Egypt under Hosni Mubarak). 
  • They cause death and suffering to their citizens: look at the huge numbers of political prisoners in most Arab countries from the Persian Gulf through Egypt and Libya and Sudan. Look at how many innocent people have died or been maimed in the past three years only.
  • They brazenly embezzle public property: the princes and potentates believe they were born owning it all; the dictators and generals believe they have earned it all by taking the serious risk of plotting to usurp power. Sort of like loot or war booty.
  • They often disappoint everyone, including each other; otherwise there would be no Borgia-style inter-family plots and coups in the royal palaces and the military barracks.
  • So, their performance is dismal, I am sure you agree with me (not that I care if you don’t). 
  • Yet they never think of hanging or shooting or burning or overdosing themselves into oblivion. True, there are not many mountains or tall bridges from which they could happily jump (a few do have access to very tall buildings and towers). 
  • They are not Japanese so a disappointing Arab despot or potentate could not get some trusted minister to swing the sword as he commits Seppuku by disemboweling himself (some foreigners might call it Hara-Kiri). Well, one can at least dream……
  • Nobody gets thrown out of helicopters anymore, and none seem to crash accidentally on purpose of late. Not since Saddam Hussein of Iraq vanished.

Speaking of leadership, their best chance of an honorable death might be something as pedestrian as a traffic accident (no pun was intended here, even I was pleasantly surprised). There are many opportunities for an honorable death on a fast local road, many innocent young citizens take advantage of them, unfortunately. It is disappointing that not any of the Arab potentates take advantage of them. Nobody in the region as as  deserving.
Maybe they don’t do it because it would be considered a sin, and there is always one sin these worthies avoid assiduously.

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