Anti-ISIS fighters condemn British Blairite Owen Smith

Anti-ISIS fighters in Syria about Owen Smith

By Beth Pulman in Britain:

Owen Smith in bizarre row with anti-Isis fighters

Saturday 27th August 2016

MP gets defensive after Bob Crow Brigade brands him a ‘backstabber’ over Isis round-table policy

OWEN SMITH has become embroiled in a bizarre spat with Brits fighting in Syria as part of the Bob Crow Brigade over his call for talks with Isis.

The volunteers, who are fighting with the International Freedom Battalion of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), hit out at the over comments Mr Smith made in a televised hustings.

And in an unexpected turn, a spokesperson for the gaffe-prone Pontypridd MP has issued a statement replying to their criticism.

Mr Smith is standing by controversial comments he made during a live debate on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show last week.

Asked whether Isis should be invited to talks, Mr Smith said: “Ultimately all solutions to these sorts of international crises do come about through dialogue, so eventually, if we are to try to solve this, all of the actors do need to be involved.

“But at the moment [Isis] are clearly not interested in negotiating.”

Asked the same question, Mr Corbyn replied: “No.”

Now the Bob Crow Brigade, which includes British and Irish volunteers has released a photo showing five fighters, wearing red balaclavas and brandishing automatic rifles, posing next to a wall where a response to Mr Smith has been spray painted.

The message reads: “@OwenSmith2016 Want to talk to Isis? Tell that to the martyrs of Manbij”.

It ends by quoting late RMT general secretary Mr Crow: “If you fight, you won’t always win. If you don’t fight, you will always lose.”

It was accompanied by a statement from Gary Oak, an English member of the group which is fighting on the front line close to Raqqa.

He said: “We were appalled to hear about Owen Smith suggesting he’d talk with Isis. People are dying here in defence of democracy and civil liberties.

“Owen might not be clever enough to realise it but he’s stabbing us in the back, just like he stabbed Jeremy Corbyn.

Mr Oak also branded Hilary Benn a hypocrite for backing Owen Smith after using the International Brigades to justify his support for British bombing in Syria.

Hilary Benn was banging on about the International Brigades one minute, then backing someone who would make deals with Isis fascists the next,” he said.

Hilary Benn justified the British Conservative government’s bombing of Syria by equating it to British International Brigades members fighting Franco’s fascist rebels in the 1930s Spanish civil war. That equation was false: the bombing of Syria being by the British conservative government, and the International Brigades members going to Spain against the wishes of the (mostly) Conservative British government. Also, the International Brigades supported the internationally recognized government of Spain. While British Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron’s bombing of Syria was/is against the internationally recognized government of that country.

Owen Smith also falsely invoked the International Brigades to justify his support for Bush’s and Blair’s 2003 invasion of Iraq, another war of ‘regime change’ against an internationally recognized government.

Around 260 fighters died in the “Manbij Offensive,” an action which saw Syrian Democratic Forces recapture and defend the city, cutting off supply lines for Isis and making it more difficult for them to send soldiers into Turkey and Europe, according to reports.

It is currently unconfirmed how many of these were international volunteers.

Dean Carl Evans, a 22-year-old from Reading, was killed in Manbij on July 21 when he and a Kurdish combatant were struck by an Isis rocket.
The female Kurdish fighter was trying to assist Dean, who joined the YPG after being refused entry to the British army, after he sustained a bullet wound just before the fatal rocket was fired.

A memorial for fallen fighters is being held in London by the Britain Kurdish People’s Assembly tomorrow at 31-33 Dalston Lane, London E8 3DF.

OWEN SMITH was accused of “pandering” to right-wing scaremongering yesterday after claiming refugees were putting public services in south Wales under strain. The Labour leadership candidate claimed schools in particular were under pressure from “significant numbers” of people fleeing from the Middle East to south Wales during an interview with Newsnight earlier this month. But official migration figures published on Thursday show that only 18 refugees are living in Rhondda Cynon Taf Council, which includes Mr Smith’s Pontypridd constituency: here.

Bloody bombing of wedding in Turkey

This video says about itself:

21 August 2016

A funeral ceremony was held in Gaziantep, Sunday, to mourn the 50 people killed by a suspected child suicide bomber at a wedding celebration in the largely Kurdish city on Saturday. Around 94 people were also injured in the blast.

By Alex Lantier:

Suicide bombing kills 51 at wedding in Turkey

22 August 2016

Fifty-one people died and 69 were injured Saturday when a horrific suicide bombing hit a Kurdish wedding in the Turkish city of Gaziantep, near the border with Syria. At least 17 of the wounded are severely injured and clinging to life.

The pro-Kurdish People‘s Democratic Party (HDP) has confirmed that one of its members was getting married at the wedding. The wedding party was winding down and guests were beginning to leave when the suicide bomber, identified as a boy aged 12 to 14, detonated his explosive vest. “The celebrations were coming to an end and there was a big explosion,” one of the guests said. “There was blood and body parts everywhere.”

Many of the victims were children, apparently because they had gathered to one side of the folk dancing at the party, and were therefore closer to the blast.

The bride and groom, Besna and Nurettin Akdogan, were injured. “They turned our wedding into a blood bath,” the bride told Turkey’s Anadolu News Agency after being released from the hospital.

The couple had reportedly fled the town of Siirt to Gaziantep in order to escape fighting between the Turkish army and ethnic Kurdish militias in Turkey. The government offensive against Kurdish separatists escalated as Kurdish militias across the border in Syria began playing a larger role in the war in that country.

Yesterday, a mass funeral was held for victims of the bombing in Gaziantep, though authorities said further DNA testing will be needed to identify all of the victims, many of whom were blown apart. …

While as of this writing no one has claimed responsibility for the Gaziantep bombing, international media and several Turkish officials blamed the atrocity on the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which has reportedly recruited children to be used as suicide bombers. …

The atrocity in Gaziantep is the outcome of years of incitement of Islamist terror and ethnic bloodshed in the region by Washington and its imperialist allies in Europe as part of their proxy war for regime-change in Syria. Since 2011, the NATO powers and their Middle East allies have funneled billions of dollars and vast weapons shipments to Islamist … militias fighting in Syria. Hundreds of thousands of Syrians have died and over 10 million have fled their homes, unleashing the greatest global refugee crisis since World War II.

Erdoğan’s attempts to follow the twists and turns of imperialist policy have had devastating consequences for Turkey itself, particularly since Washington and its European allies began attacking ISIS in 2014 after it invaded Iraq and threatened to topple the US-backed puppet regime in Baghdad. ISIS had developed an extensive logistical network in Turkey and, starting last year, retaliated with a string of terror bombings inside Turkey.

These included the October 2015 attack in Ankara that killed 105 people and the March 2016 bombing on Istiqlal Avenue in Istanbul, both of which were planned by ISIS forces in Gaziantep.

British Blairite Owen Smith’s ISIS gaffe

Owen Smith and ISIS

There is ISIS terrorism now; to a very large extent because of the Iraq war started by George W Bush and Britain’s Tony Blair. Then, ISIS became worse because of the NATO governments’ covert regime change war in Syria; which in 2013 almost escalated into open war with the US, British and other NATO governments as allies of ISIS; until pressure by the peace movement made the British parliament stop these plans.

When Jeremy Corbyn was a candidate for the British Labour party leadership in 2015, the Blairite right wing of the party smeared Corbyn, associating him with ISIS terror.

So did then Conservative prime Minister David Cameron, after Corbyn had won the Labour leadership election.

Now, today, from daily The Morning Star in Britain, on Blairite Labour leadership Owen Smith:

Gaffe-prone Smith ridiculed over ‘Isis talks’

Thursday 18th August 2016

Labour leadership contender forced to backtrack on negotiating-with-terrorists comments

by Luke James, Parliamentary Reporter

OWEN SMITH was mired in controversy yesterday after suggesting that Isis should be invited to peace talks aimed at ending the Syrian civil war.

The Labour leadership contender said that “all the actors” must be brought round the table to end the brutal conflict, including the notorious terror group.

Mr Smith rapidly rowed back on the comments, which he made during a televised hustings with Jeremy Corbyn, after being condemned by figures from the left and right of politics.

Asked by host Victoria Derbyshire whether Isis should be involved in negotiations, Mr Smith referred to his time as a special adviser to former Northern Ireland secretary Paul Murphy.

He said: “Ultimately all solutions to these sorts of international crises do come about through dialogue so eventually, if we are to try to solve this, all of the actors do need to be involved.

“But at the moment Isil are clearly not interested in negotiating.” Asked the same question, Mr Corbyn said: “They are not going to be round the table. No.”

A spokesman for the Jeremy For Labour campaign said later that Mr Smith’s comments were “hasty and ill-considered.”

“Jeremy has always argued that there must be a negotiated political solution to the war in Syria and the wider Middle East, and that maintaining lines of communication during conflicts is essential,” said the spokesperson.

“But Isis cannot be part of those negotiations. Instead, its sources of funding and supplies must be cut off.”

Tory MP Johnny Mercer MP, a member of the defence select committee, said the comment “demonstrates his unfitness for leadership.

“His desperate attempts to out-Corbyn Jeremy Corbyn have led him to the view that barbaric murderers who behead journalists and lynch homosexuals are now the sort of people that we should negotiate with,” he added.

A spokesman for Mr Smith later sought to clarify his comments, saying he believed there could be no negotiation with Isis unless they “renounce violence, cease all acts of terror and commit themselves to a peaceful settlement.”

One Labour source told the International Business Times that Mr Smith makes “more gaffes than Frank Spencer.”

Owen Smith, Jeremy Corbyn and ISIS

Also from daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Smith’s parody of the left

Thursday 18th August 2016

ONCE again, Owen Smith’s campaign team has had to intervene to save its candidate from an ill-thought-out political position — his call to involve Islamic State (Isis) in peace negotiations.

Team Smith explained that he meant an Isis that agrees to “renounce violence, cease all acts of terror and commit themselves to a peaceful settlement,” which is really likely.

The problem is not, as Smith claimed, that the death cult is not interested in negotiating “at the moment.” It is that there is no basis to justify negotiations with this murderous bunch of cut-throats who set their face against the modern world and want to impose a present-day caricature of a caliphate that ended over 800 years ago.

Jeremy Corbyn was right to declare that there is no place for this terror group at the negotiating table. What aspects of Isis rule would Smith be prepared to debate with its apologists — public beheadings, sadistic ritual murder, child rape, slave markets for captured women, mutilation as punishment?

The only responses to Isis are to defeat it comprehensively and to prevail upon Western states not to act in a way that exacerbates resentment among Muslims and encourages a tiny minority to seek vengeance through this cult of violence and pseudo-religious obscurantism.

The only forces with a track record of inflicting military defeats on Isis have been the national armies of Iraq and Syria and the independent Kurdish forces in both countries. …

This is not the same as sending foreign air forces over Syria to bomb targets of their own choice without agreement from Damascus in an exercise that is illegal, provocative and, at the same time, militarily ineffective.

Corbyn voted against this Tory proposal, which owes more to imperial nostalgia for British military involvement in this region-wide conflict. Smith did likewise last December, as a shadow cabinet member who hadn’t yet joined his colleagues’ rolling campaign to undermine the party leader. However, Corbyn’s challenger contradicted this peace stance by declaring that he would order the use of nuclear weapons — condemning millions of people to death — because, “If you don’t, then you don’t have a nuclear deterrent.”

While Smith may believe that having nuclear weapons and threatening to use them adds up to a deterrent, it isn’t really. No British PM could unleash a nuclear holocaust without Washington’s permission and, even if that were possible, other countries doubt that nuclear-armed powers will deploy them.

The Argentinian junta didn’t let Britain’s nuclear deterrent stop it from trying to regain the Falklands/Malvinas by force any more than US nukes deterred Saddam Hussein from invading Kuwait or Israel’s nuclear weaponry prevented Lebanese resistance forces from liberating much of their country from military occupation. …

Smith’s underlying problem, as ever, is to reformulate himself as a man of the left because a challenge from the right would, in present circumstances, be crushed. …

It was all very unconvincing, which explains perhaps why the vast majority of audience members identified as undecided at the start of yesterday’s debate lined up behind Corbyn supporters at the end.

Corbyn, Smith and Trident

‘Munich bloodbath, inspired by Breivik and Aryan-Iranian myth’

This video says about itself:

MASS MURDERER Breivik gets 21 years for 77 LIVES & REGRETS not killing MORE

25 August 2012

Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik – who admitted killing 77 people, and taunted the court with Nazi salutes – has been declared sane by judges.

He’s been jailed for the maximum 21 years, for committing the country’s worst atrocity since World War 2, with his bombing and gun rampage in Oslo and Utøya island. But, broken down, his sentence equates to just over three months for each of his victims.

Breivik smirked when he heard the verdict. At the end of his sentencing, he apologised to ‘militant nationalists‘ for not killing more people. He’s always insisted on his sanity, and that the killings were part of his fight against the ‘Islamification of Norway’. EU countries were suffering a rise in far-right activities before the tragedy but, as Tesa Arcilla reports, Breivik’s ideas are fuelling even more hatred towards immigrants and Islam.

By Iranian American author Alex Shams:

On Munich and Whiteness

July 24, 2016

Why did the Munich killer beg us to see him as German?

Around and around we go.

Yesterday, an 18-year old man named David Ali Sonboly, born and raised in Germany with an Iranian immigrant background, carried out a shooting in Munich during which he yelled “I Am German!”, complained about being bullied for years, reportedly made disparaging remarks about Turks, and ended up killing 10 people including himself.

The killer was obsessed with mass shootings, and his room was full of documents exploring school shootings. Police also said there was an “obvious link between the gunman and Norway’s mass killer Anders Behring Breivik, who murdered 77 people in July 2011”, who was a white supremacist hoping to target “multiculturalism” in his killings.

Sonboly appeared to have been attracted to his right-wing, anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim rhetoric, a fact that manifested in the fact that of the nine people he killed, at least three were reported to be Turks, three were Kosovans, and one was Greek. He had also apparently previously converted from Shia Islam to Christianity sometime before.

And yet, suddenly, the fact that this boy was of Iranian heritage is a major story in the US media, and the usual suspects even called for Muslim leaders and Islam to be put on trial for his actions. …

Instead of having a conversation about violence in the West, about masculinity and gun culture, about bullying in schools particularly against children of immigrants, they want to talk about Islam. Why not ask:

Why would a young man feel so bullied and targeted that he would feel the need to claim his Germanness while killing people?

What pushes victims of bullying to engage in acts of horrifying violence themselves?

What effect does a climate of racist intolerance, in which the anti-immigrant rightwing is gaining unprecedented power across Europe and the US, have on second-generation immigrant children in the West?

Why are 98% of mass killings carried out by men?

Instead of a real conversation about any of these issues, the main focus becomes whether or not he had ISIS links.

It is much easier to look to Iraq and Syria to blame, it seems, than to investigate what factors in our societies causes such incidents. Make no mistake about it: this violence is a product of our own society.

Beside these questions, another central problem is emerging, one that points to the complexities of identity for children of immigrants, particularly from Iran.

It appears that the killer was influenced by the writings of right-wing, Islamophobic European extremists and was distinctly full of hate toward immigrants in general and Turks in particular.

Many are now asking how a child of Iranian immigrants could have become infatuated with right-wing White nationalism. While nothing is certain, it is possible to speculate on the reasons for the emergence of such an ideology, or at least such a sympathy.

Some Iranians – particularly in the Diaspora – subscribe to the “Aryan” racial theory promoted by European thinkers in the earlier 20th century. This combines with their dislike for their own government – which too often translates into rabid Islamophobia, as they are unable to distinguish between the actions of the Iranian government and Islam as a whole – to emerge into a disgusting mix of pseudo-scientific racial ideology that sees “Iranians” as “Aryan brothers.”

Adopting this weird ideology is fundamentally an attempt by Iranians in the Diaspora assimilate, to distinguish themselves from other immigrants by claiming to be as close to Europe and Whiteness as possible.

It is all-too-common in late-night chatboards frequented by young, male Iranian teenagers in Diaspora, i.e. people like David Sonboly. I know this because as an Iranian-American myself, I have come face to face with these theories time after time, and tried my utmost to debunk them.

Although it was largely abandoned in Europe after being put to use by Hitler in the Holocaust, in Iran (and India) the idea that Indians, Iranians, and Europeans shared a genetic Aryan lineage and that this lineage distinguished them from “mongrel” Turks, Arabs, and “Muslims” as a category more broadly still holds certain sway.

The pre-1979 regime of the shah in Iran promoted this Aryan-Iranian myth intensively.

Right-wing European extremism intersects perfectly with this Aryanist theory in its flagrant and violent Islamophobia, where hatred for Islam, for Arabs, for Turks, and for all others who don’t fit into the “Aryan theory” all come together in a disgustingly racist maelstrom.

This is a wake up call for the Iranian diaspora: enough with these pseudo-scientific racialist theories, enough with this Islamophobia disguised as critique of the Iranian government, enough with these attempts to assimilate by aiming to prove our Whiteness by all means possible.

But it is also, as I mentioned before, a wake up call for all of us – about how we think about violence, about how we think about masculinity, and about we think about identity.

What circumstances drive a young man to cling to a theory of racial superiority and beg onlookers to a massacre he is perpetrating to recognize him as German, and not as a foreigner?

See also here.

The German authorities have used the pretext of the shooting spree in Munich, by an 18-year-old young man, to conduct a massive emergency and civil war exercise, locking down a city with a population of 1.5 million for hours, and unleashing fear and panic. July 22 marks a turning point in the decline of democracy in Germany: here.

Nice atrocity perpetrator ‘not religious, marriage on the rocks’

This video says about itself:

Nice Truck Attack Investigation Begins

15 July 2016

Investigations have begun into the incident that left 84 people dead including ten children.

Dutch NOS TV reports today about Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, the local truck driver who extremely probably was the perpetrator of the bloodbath in Nice, France and was shot dead by police. He was married and had three children.

Translation of what Mr Bouhlel’s next door neighbour said to France 3 TV station:

he is convinced that the attack has nothing to do with Islam. “He has nothing to do with religion, he does not pray, he does not observe Ramadan. He is a depressed man who is in divorce. He lives alone and has financial problems.”

Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, Driver In Nice Attack, Wasn’t ‘Stable Psychologically,’ Family Says. The 31-year-old reportedly had no known ties to terror groups: here.

Also from NOS TV today (translated):

Nice perpetrator had no ties to terrorist groups, justice department thinks …

According to the justice department, it does not appear that the attack was the work of an Islamic terrorist organization. The French Prime Minister Valls said in the news of public broadcaster France 2 that Lahouaiej probably had links to radical Islamic groups.

So, Prime Minister Valls does not listen to the investigators of his own justice department. He does not listen to the next door neighbour of the perpetrator. Because that would not fit into Valls’ policies of Islamophobia (and discrimination against Roma), anti-democratic state of emergency against workers, environmentalists, etc.

[French President] Hollande’s promise to respond militarily to the Nice attack just continues the West’s vicious circle of terror and war. At some point, we in the West are going to have to learn that if we intervene militarily in Mali or Iraq or Libya or Syria or interfere in Turkey, or Egypt, or the Gulf, or the Maghreb – then we will not be safe ‘at home’: here.

USA: Newt Gingrich: Politician who almost became Donald Trump’s VP calls for Muslim deportation after Nice attack: here.

Nice attack: Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump agree that US is ‘at war’. Both presidential candidates offered their different approaches to the war against Isis – who has not claimed responsibility for Nice: here.

A Mosque In Rhode Island Was Vandalized After The Nice Attacks: here.

Nice attack: Sikh man Veerender Jubbal wrongly identified on social media in France terror for second time: here.

You are a ‘terrorist’ because of your clothes in Ohio, USA

This video from the USA says about itself:

Emirati businessman attacked by American armed police, because of his clothes and language

2 July 2016

An incident at a hotel in Avon, Ohio, in which an Emirati businessman was forcibly detained and attacked by armed police

Dutch NOS TV writes today (translated) about this

police action in the US against a businessman from Abu Dhabi who on the basis of his appearance was suspected of ties to Islamic State [ISIS].

Last week five policemen in Avon (Ohio), alarmed by a hotel employee, aimed their weapons at the Arab businessman who had a telephone conservation outside his hotel. The man was dressed in a long white robe, called a kandura, and wore traditional head covering.

Heart attack

The police shouted to him that he had to lie on the ground. The Arab then had a heart attack and had to be hospitalized. The municipal authorities have apologized.

Cops Conduct SWAT Style Assault on Innocent Man, Put Him in Hospital: here.

ISIS terror in Turkey, why?

This video says about itself:

Turkey’s Regional Ambitions Fuel Attacks Within its Own Borders

29 June 2016

Baris Karaagac says the Turkish state must give up its aggressive, Neo-Ottomanist foreign policy if it wants to contain terrorist attacks.

Why the ISIS bloodbath at Istanbul airport especially now?

Turkey’s “double game” on ISIS and support for extremist groups highlighted after horrific Istanbul attack. Turkish President Erdoğan has long been accused of helping ISIS and other extremist militants fight Kurds and Assad: here.

From Paris to Istanbul, more ‘war on terror’ means more terrorist attacks: here.

Alex Lantier writes today:

Turkish opposition politicians publicly questioned the role of the security services and of Erdoğan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) in the attacks. İdris Baluken, deputy parliamentary group leader of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), said: “When bombs are going off in a place such as Atatürk Airport, we wonder what this country’s government, interior minister, intelligence and police are doing,” he said.

The timing of the attacks also raises questions as to whether they are a message aimed by ISIS to top levels of the Turkish and NATO military and political leaderships.

The attacks came as the AKP was trying to carry out a broad shift in its foreign policy, setting it on course for a confrontation with ISIS, just as ISIS also faces serious setbacks in Iraq after the loss of Fallujah to Iraqi government forces. Until recently, Turkey was locked in a bitter confrontation with Russia, having recklessly shot down a Russian warplane last year over Syria, where Russian forces allied with the Syrian government were attacking jihadist militias. Moscow also accused Turkey of complicity with ISIS.

Not only the Russian government said that. So said the Israeli government, Turkish journalists, Turkish MPs, United States Vice President Joseph Biden, and many others.

In recent weeks, however, Turkey has been moving closer to Russia and also trying to deepen its ties with Israel.

The day before the attack, [Turkish Prime Minister] Yıldırım announced that a “normalization process had begun” with Russia, after Erdoğan wrote a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin to apologize for the shooting down of the Russian jet. At the same time, Turkey was preparing initiatives to improve ties with both Israel and Egypt, whose military dictator Abdel Fattah al-Sisi came to power in a putsch that toppled a Muslim Brotherhood government allied to the AKP.

It appears likely that, with this latest bloody attack, ISIS was sending a signal to the Turkish regime that ISIS and its regional allies still can do considerable damage to Turkey, should the AKP government turn on them.

The Istanbul airport bombing: Blowback from the war in Syria: here.