Arab Spring

Random thoughts on Kobane, ISIS, Turkey and the Khorasan

Kobane/Kobani in Syria next to the Turkish border and has for a couple of months now been under assault by SIS.

There has been immense international pressure on Turkey to intervene and when it didn't, mass accusations that it was aiding ISIS.

It has often been stated that Turkey is often a route used by westerners to get into Syria/Iraq and potentially join ISIS. Further "damning" evidence against Turkey is that potentially around 400 Turks have joined ISIS.

What is often ignored when quoting this number is that there are more suspected britons (500) of having joined ISIS that Turks (400) even though Turkey is a Muslim country and is right next to the theatre of operations.

Following the chemical massacre on the outskirts of Damascus what should be done?

Syria should be invaded by an international coalition
11% (4 votes)
The Syrian Leadership should be bombed/assassinated
14% (5 votes)
Arm the opposition
19% (7 votes)
Do nothing
5% (2 votes)
Something else
51% (19 votes)
Total votes: 37

Farewell to Morsi, the President elect of Egypt

The Egyptian president has fallen, forced out through a combination of mass protest and the military.

I wonder if the people on the street even realise that they have been played by the old guard.

Morsi, from the Muslim Brotherhood, had a tough reign in power, elected only a year ago.

Powerless President

When before the elections it looked like there was a possibility that a Muslim Brotherhood candidate might win, the military had made a decree removing the powers of the president, in essense making him a puppet. Even then they were forced to allow him to be president by the people who at the time did not want a member of the old regime to already subvert the revolution.

Turkey: What is actually happening?

If you have read or watched the news over the past few days, you will have read about protests in Turkey.

They started over an infrastructure project over a park but when the Police went in forcefully, they spread and became massive.

A lot of people have wondered if this is an extension of the "Arab Spring", and that this is "the voice of the people rising up against their authoritarian regimes".

As the protests have taken journalists by surprise, there has been some loose talk and weak attempts to understand what is happening in Turkey. Others have tried to give the normal voices to the protesters.

Hezbollah turns on the people that supported it

Hezbollah is a large millitant group mostly based in southern Lebanon with a goal to resist Israel.

It had large popular backing when until around 2000, Israel had occupied southern Lebanon. It got a lot of support from the people on the street, and the governments of Syria and Iran.

It has also been involved in two conflicts with Israel since the Israeli withdrawal, but still enjoyed widespread support as "Legitimate resistance" and also for being a thorn in Israel's side.

The people of Syria supported Hezbollah almost totally, and this was helped by the fact that the regime also supported Hezbollah as its trump card to hit Israel should any hostilities arise with Israel or its allies.

The people of Syria gave them shelter and support.

Syria will continue to bleed in 2013

So far, the Syrian conflict has resulted in a reported 40,000 lives being lost.

There are some estimates that 100,000 lives will be lost over the following year.

Hopefully though the deaths and suffering will be far less than what is expected, and will result in an improvement for the people in Syria, but some of the fighting groups may not please the locals too much.

We need to give greater focus to this (and other conflicts) and not focus just on Palestine (but that also does not mean that the focus on there should be reduced).

It is sometimes easier to focus on other conflicts where Muslims are being oppressed by Non Muslims, but solely focussing on them leaves us open to arguments of bias which belittle out focus on those opressions.

The day that the future hung in the balance

Two important polls going on today:


1. Greece.

The people are voting again after the last elections 6 weeks ago proved inconclusive.

The results could decide whether greece stays in the Euro, the EU both, either or none.

Very important european election where there are no guarantees and this could be the first nation to leave the eurozone and that is an unknown as the euro was not built for anyone to leave it ever. Questions exist if it could survive a state leaving and also how bad or good this would be for Greece.


2. Egypt.

It's the run off presidential elections the week after the old remnants have been making themselves felt.

Egypt: Disolving the Revolution

The supreme court has called last and has also ruled thata former Prime Minister under Mubarak who was legally barred from being president could take part in the upcoming run off presidential elections that will take place this weekend.

This may hand all power (all instead of the 99% that it holds now) back to the military and once again lead the country to a place it is lead by people it doesnt want to be lead by.

Something to keep an eye on.