Friday, 31 January 2014

WILL AFGHAN PRESIDENT HAMID KARZAI LITERALLY SURVIVE 2014?



Will nato kill of Karzai with a 'Taliban' operation?
Sukant Chandan
Sons of Malcolm
Fri 31 Jan 2014

2014 will see the brits and yanks assassinating Afghan president Karzai. Yes Karzai is a former western oil industry senior (unacol), yes he was imposed in Afghanistan on the basis of a colonial war of aggression after decades of colonial-made destabilisation there in alliance with the death squads wrongly named 'mujahideen'. However, Karzai has not gone along with the empire hymn sheet. Too often we narrowly define any given phenomena as totally bad, and think nothing in the world is advantageous/positive for us. Fact is, everything is the sum total of its parts, and those parts are, to differing degrees, either in total generally helpful to us, or not, or nearly equally balanced with negatives and positives. Debate and real struggle illuminates the process of correctly appraising the phenomena:

1, Karzai has made reasonably constructive strategic ties to imperialism main enemies on the planet on which they seek to totally destroy: Iran, India, China and Russia. 

2, with the wind down of nato troops in Afghanistan, the leading nato countries will be looking to ensure Afghanistan is a launch pad for death squads etc sought to devastate Central Asia, Iran, Russia, India, Pakistan, China etc

3, The 'west' have already for years given their main strategic allies in Afghanistan, the 'Taliban', a open political office in surprise-surprise, the west's most important slave state- Qatar. nato claim that every 'insurgent' fighting them in the country is Taliban. Its not. Its local ppls fighting for their land, family, clan, tribe etc.

4, The west want to make sure Taliban and such types are well functional and ready to direct at their will.

5, Karzai has done a not bad job in strategically pushing back empire plans, he has many a time sniped hard at nato, he has defied their strategy: therefore, I will be surprised that he will survive. nato will get 'the Taliban' to kill him off most likely.

CHALLENGES OF NATIONAL LIBERATION FOR, AND IMPERIALIST STRATEGIES AGAINST, ANC / SOUTH AFRICA


Dont fool for empire tricks
Sukant Chandan
Sons of Malcolm
Fri 31 Jan 2014

White imperialist gloves are coming off for South Africa / ANC govt. I've been saying for years that empire was waiting for Nelson Mandela to pass away before upping their war against ANC/South Africa, which is what we are witnessing right now. Mandela was a revolutionary, whose strategy and views on anti-imperialism, African unity etc was always made clear and people I would suggest respect him for who he was rather than how the enemy (london, paris, dc, brussels) white washed him, which they do towards many of ours (Biko, Che, Malcolm etc), and they couldn't wholly admit they want regime change, although the signs were always there. Four main points:

1. Julius Malema and EFF ally with apartheid's agents:

We are seeing the potentially good next generation leadership of Julius Malema etc and the split (from the ANC) 'EFF' make alliances with Buthelezi now(!!), ie., alliances with the very sectarian-tribal counter-revolutionary forces which allied with the apartheid regime to attack and kill the ANC towards the end of apartheid! What a terribly counterrevolutionary place brother Malema and EFF have found themselves in. It really is cold outside the ANC, to quote Pres Zuma!

2. Mamphela Ramphele trojan for white imperialism:

Mamphela Ramphele is a former mining company head and head of the world bank. She happens to be a former lover of Steve Biko, and has now teamed up with the apartheid-nostalgists of the 'DA' (democractic alliance). the DA have got Ramphele as the black face to their white imperialist agenda. The same old tory colonial and zionist forces which supported their allies in Zimbabwe (mdc and Tsvangarai), and who support their anti-people allies across the world are in part using hoping Ramphele/DA will challenge the ANC for govt at the next elections.

3. Why the ANC are strategic enemies of white imperialism that the latter are seeking to destroy:

The ANC allied with the liberation movements of Africa (MPLA, Frelimo, Zanu, Swapo, Paigc etc) and across the world (Brics, Maduro, Fidel, Vietnam etc etc) are on a regional, continent and international level in direct confrontation strategy wise with imperialism. They chased out empire death squads from DRC with SADC forces, gave exile to Aristide when he got chased out of Haiti by white imperialism, is in a bitter war with western pharma companies recently calling them "satanic" and "genocidal" (ANC health minister), have been Zanu/Mugabe's main ally and defender and much much more.

4. Empire will use any and every split to rally anti-ANC strategy. Our response - resist and expose it:

What we have is white imperialism rallying an array of forces to split the SA masses, confuse us, and get us to support their strategies. Seems that they are being successful judging from the amount of people falling in line with it. The minimum position should be to not interfere in the affairs of the ANC and patriotic masses of SA, and to employ vigilance towards and Resistance against empire strategies, this requires understanding that the intergenerational struggle of the ANC/Tripartite Alliance allied with SADC, BRICS, NAM, BASIC etc, is still developing and gaining momentum, and it is these formations that are the greatest force on the planet on behalf of Humanity to fight on every level for the Liberation of our peoples.

I know bro Carlos Martinez and I have shared a lot of evidence to support our shared analysis and will be putting out more in the immediate period. Please check through key words ANC, South Africa on sonsofmalcolm.com for information from me, a lot more to come.

Sunday, 26 January 2014

PUBLIC EVENT: Sun 16th Feb 6-9pm - THE ARAB STING AND ITS CONSEQUENCES ON THE GLOBAL SOUTH


THE ARAB STING AND ITS CONSEQUENCES ON GLOBAL SOUTH

Sunday, February 16, 2014
6:00pm until 9:00pm
Housmans Bookshop
5 Caledonian Road
N1 9DX
(2mins walk from Kings Cross tube station)

LIVE STREAM LINK

Speakers:

Dr Abdal Aziz - Aljud Charity 

George Shire - Zimbabwean Liberation War veteran, scholar and political activist

Ammar Waqqaf - Syrian Social Club 

Dan Glazebrook - Author of 'Divide and Ruin, The West's Imperial Strategy in an Age of Crisis

Chaired by Sukant Chandan, Sons of Malcolm 

On the third anniversary of the pro-nato uprising in Libya, the Libyan Aljud Charity and Sons of Malcolm presents an important conversation exploring the consequences of the 'Arab Spring' on the middle east' and North Africa, and more widely what this has resulted for the the vast majority of Humanity in the GlobalSouth.

This event brings together speakers and attendees who are critical and radical voices loyal to the independence and Black and Brown liberation struggles of the GlobalSouth against white supremacy and imperialism.

Coming to this event means you are giving permission to be filmed. 

Friday, 24 January 2014

[video] ARABIC LANGUAGE VIDEO OF LIBYAN PATRIOTS PROTESTING IN EGYPT

HOW tHATCHER GOT OUT-MANOEUVRED ON HONG KONG AND THE NORTH KOREANS & CHINESE LAUGHED AND TOASTED


"While Zhao was left to exchange politely pointed speeches with Thatcher about their 'valuable and stimulating' talks, Kim il Sung was down the corridor, toasting 'militant friendship' and 'the raging flames of war against common enemies' late into the evening to an applauding audience led by Deng Xiaoping and a roll-call of the Politburo." ... ... And then they let Thatcher slip on the ice on the steps of the Great Hall of the People. Lol

How Mrs Thatcher Lost Hong Kong: Ten years ago, fired up by her triumph in the Falklands war, Margaret Thatcher flew to Peking for a last-ditch attempt to keep Hong Kong under British rule - only to meet her match in Deng Xiaoping. Two years later she signed the agreement handing the territory to China

[source]

mARGARET tHATCHER'S plane landed in Peking at half-past one on the afternoon of 22 September, 1982. It was her second visit to China, the first having been when she was Leader of the Opposition in 1977.

She did not, according to one civil servant, find China very attractive: 'She was a great exception to the general rule among political and business leaders, that having reached Peking and had their tummies tickled, they are captivated by the place, seeing themselves as latter-day Marco Polo figures. When she went as Leader of the Opposition, she found it a rather unpleasant place governed by rather unpleasant people.'

The coolness was mutual. Her subsequent visit, the first to China by a serving British prime minister, was reported as the fourth item on Peking's main radio news that evening, deemed of less importance than a commentary on the Communist Party's recent national congress, a report on reactions to the congress among miners in Henan province, and the arrival in Xian of another foreign leader, Kim Il-sung of North Korea.

Thatcher's party included her principal private secretary, Robin Butler, her press secretary, Bernard Ingham, Sir Edward Youde, the newly appointed Governor of Hong Kong, and Alan Donald, Foreign Office assistant under-secretary for Asia and the Pacific. The entourage was an unusual one for a prime minister's overseas visit in that it failed to include the Foreign Secretary. One of the press party, Hugo Young, recorded that this was because, 'as the leader's aides casually suggested, she found it hard to be in the same room, let alone the same aircraft, as Francis Pym'.

Pym had proved insufficiently bellicose for Thatcher's purposes during the Falklands war that spring and summer, and they had scarcely talked since about Hong Kong. In the words of one official: 'The idea of sticking the Hong Kong file . . . which you might as well have called 'Proposal to Divest Sovereignty over Hong Kong to Foreigners' . . . the idea of putting that under Thatcher's nose in her hour of triumph was more than any foreign secretary could have borne.'

Belatedly, Thatcher had taken advice from diplomats whose logic she respected - Youde, and Sir Percy Cradock, Britain's Ambassador in Peking. They told her to expect that China would press for a resumption of the whole of Hong Kong in 1997; and that Peking wanted to turn Hong Kong into a 'special zone' of China, where the practice of capitalism would be permitted. They also warned her that Britain's hold on Hong Kong was more tenuous in practical terms than a reading of the 19th-century treaties might suggest.

Though Hong Kong Island and Kowloon had been ceded to Britain 'in perpetuity', there was no physical border between these ceded portions and the New Territories, and no way in which Britain could defend or sustain the ceded portions if China wanted to take them back together with the New Territories.

The Foreign Office proposed a counter-strategy founded upon a distinction between 'sovereignty' and 'administration'. It suggested that Thatcher aim to reach an agreement with China whereby Britain would cede a titular sovereignty over Hong Kong to Peking, in exchange for Peking's formal agreement to allow British administration to remain in place in Hong Kong beyond 1997. Thatcher eventually digested the proposal in principle more easily than the Foreign Office had feared. The over-arching requirement, she accepted, was for a settlement with China which gave the people of Hong Kong renewed confidence in their own territory's future.

According to one official: 'She did not for a moment think that Hong Kong was in any way comparable with the Falklands, despite the paranoia in the Foreign Office. There were many important differences, number one among them being, from her point of view, that if Britain had had to welcome every last islander and every last sheep from the Falkland Islands into Britain, then there would have been no political consequences for the person who had opened the door. If Britain had to accept even a fraction of the population of Hong Kong, it would be political suicide.'

Yet the Falklands cast a longer shadow than the Foreign Office was perhaps willing to concede. As the Prime Minister arrived in Peking, her heart was not quite with her head. In the absence of a strong foreign secretary, she was being left more than usually to her own instincts, and the afterglow of victory in the South Atlantic still smouldered.

However much political sense it might make to embark on a process which would end with a transfer of sovereignty over Hong Kong to China, Thatcher's instincts told her that title to Hong Kong was rightly Britain's - and that some sort of stand should be made.

From Peking airport, Thatcher was driven to the Diaoyutai State Guest House on the western side of the city for a brief rest and a change of clothes, then on to a ceremonial welcome at the Great Hall of the People and a preliminary meeting with her Chinese counterpart, Zhao Ziyang.

IT WAS not until that evening's banquet, with Zhao as host, that the main topic of the visit was first mentioned. Between toasts in maotai - the Chinese sorghum liquor, of which Clive James, also in the press party, observed: 'It has the same effect as inserting your head in a cupboard and asking a large male friend to slam the door' - Zhao delivered a short, oblique speech, saying: 'In our bilateral relations, there are problems left over from history that need to be solved through consultations.'

Thatcher, in her reply, cut through Zhao's politic circumlocution. 'We have not yet begun our discussions on Hong Kong,' she said. 'I look forward to pursuing this important matter with you tomorrow.'

But Zhao, too, was looking forward to the next day; and he was on home ground. When morning came, it was he, not Thatcher, who seized the initiative. In a corridor at the Great Hall of the People, outside the room in which Thatcher awaited him, he turned to a clutch of Hong Kong journalists and made an unexpected declaration. 'China', he said, 'will certainly take back its sovereignty over Hong Kong.'

A rustle of surprise rippled through the audience. 'However, in my opinion,' Zhao continued, 'the problem of sovereignty will not affect Hong Kong's stability and prosperity. Hong Kong should not worry about its future.'

'Why not?' called a voice from the press.

'Why should they worry?' replied Zhao. 'China will certainly take a series of policies and measures to guarantee Hong Kong's prosperity and stability.' With that, Zhao broke away to give Thatcher the same message in more detail.

The purpose of Zhao's seemingly casual disclosure was not merely to put on record China's intention of regaining control of Hong Kong, but also to show that China felt free to make decisions about Hong Kong without consulting Britain first, and to appeal directly to Hong Kong public opinion for support. As a departure from diplomatic etiquette it was economical and eloquent, and it unsettled the British, who, anxious to avoid raising expectations in Hong Kong, had regarded confidentiality as an essential element of the Peking talks. Their nerves were now on edge.

Thatcher's composure was further troubled by the beginnings of a cold, encouraged by a punishing schedule which had began with four days in Japan even before she arrived in China. Her energy was waning, but she insisted on carrying out relatively trivial engagements. On the Thursday, after her meeting with Zhao, she appeared barely able to remain awake through a late-afternoon concert of Beethoven by student musicians at the Peking Conservatory. She continued with a tour of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, an appearance at a British Council book display and a dinner for British businessmen at the Jianguo Hotel, before retiring for the night.

The next morning, Friday, 24 September, came the main meeting of Thatcher's stay: the session with Deng Xiaoping, China's senior leader. Though Deng did not condescend to hold any formal job corresponding to his overall power, he was at the zenith of his reign, and his sergeant-major's bark was the decisive voice on any issue of importance. Short-tempered, bossy, spitting and chain-smoking, Deng was no more inclined to self-doubt than Thatcher herself, and much less fond of argument. The stage was set for a two-hour meeting which was acknowledged, even in the coded language of British diplomacy, to have

been 'abrasive'.

AT THE Great Hall of the People that morning, Deng was flanked by Huang Hua, his foreign affairs minister, Zhang Wenjin, vice-minister, and Ke Hua, ambassador to London. Arrayed to Deng's right were Thatcher, Youde, Butler and Cradock; in the foreground, an enamel spittoon of which Deng made frequent use. 'There has been a lively debate going on for years,' reflected one diplomat, 'about whether Deng's habit of spitting into spittoons while receiving visitors is done for effect, or whether he really is a vulgar old bugger who cannot kick the habit.'

Deng was blunt. China, he said: '. . . cannot but resume the exercise of sovereignty over the whole of the Hong Kong area in 1997. Upon such resumption, the Chinese government will take into full consideration the territory's

special circumstances and adopt special policies in order to maintain the prosperity of Hong Kong.'

China, in other words, was determined to take back the whole of Hong Kong; and it felt no need of Britain's blessing to do so.

This, for Thatcher - and for Hong Kong - was a decisive moment. Deng had issued an ultimatum, which must be rejected or accepted. Thatcher could reject the ultimatum by replying that, legally, Britain held the high ground. It possessed a sovereignty over Hong Kong which it could choose to yield, or not, depending on what other arrangements might be reached with China.

Alternatively, she could choose the way of conciliation. She could acknowledge here and now that China's claim to sovereignty could not be resisted, and hope by doing so to create an atmosphere of co-operation in which China might reasonably be expected to offer concessions on administration much more readily than it would through adversarial negotiation.

Conciliation would have been the more apparently logical course, since both sides knew perfectly well that Britain could not remain in the ceded areas of Hong Kong after 1997 without China's co-operation. In practical terms, the treaties were worthless, sovereignty would be China's in due course, and any row about it would certainly damage Hong Kong in the short term whatever the eventual outcome.

But there were, for Thatcher, other and more acute considerations. However sound the reasoning, it would be politically intolerable for her to be seen to give in to the diktat of a Communist power. She defended the remnants and virtues of Empire more fiercely than any prime minister since Churchill: if a yielding of Hong Kong was inevitable, she must none the less be seen to fight against it.

There was an element of demagoguery here, but other considerations pulled in the same direction. If Thatcher's government was to 'sell' to Hong Kong - and to the British parliament - a 1997 deal which involved a transfer of sovereignty over Hong Kong to China, then Hong Kong and parliament would have to be persuaded that this was the best agreement that Britain could possibly have secured. It would be essential to make Chinese intransigence a matter of public record. Better, for these reasons, to start a fight and - if necessary - to lose it, than pre-emptively to surrender sovereignty and leave Hong Kong a hostage to China's generosity.

Thatcher stood her ground. Hong Kong, she duly told Deng, was British by virtue of three treaties which were valid in international law, two of which were cessions. These were substantial obligations. China could not simply disregard them. If it wanted to resume the whole of Hong Kong, the only way in which it could legally do so would be through varying the terms of the existing treaties, by agreement with Britain.

Thatcher understood the 'importance' of the 'sovereignty issue' to China, she told Deng. But Britain's primary concern was that an administration should remain in place in Hong Kong after 1997, capable of maintaining the 'stability and prosperity' of the territory. She was dismissive of the Chinese scheme to resume sovereignty over Hong Kong and then allow it to function as a capitalist enclave under Chinese rule: it was imaginative, but it was untested, unproven.

Only continued British administration - British 'rule', she said - could guarantee Hong Kong's well-being beyond 1997.

It was only then did Thatcher hint at her proposed bargain. If, she said, a 'satisfactory' agreement could be reached on administration, the nature of which she had already made clear, then she would 'consider making recommendations tothe British parliament' on the issue of sovereignty over Hong Kong. But agreement on administration must come first. For the time being, she concluded, the two countries should pursue discussions at a diplomatic level.

This, visibly, was not what Deng had expected, as he shuffled irritably in his chair. Not since the normalisation of Sino-British relations in 1972 had any British minister directly rejected China's claim to Hong Kong. Yet now, a decade later, a British prime minister was turning back the clock, and speaking - as China heard it - the language of 19th-century imperialism, defending the spoils of the Opium Wars and thrusting back into China's face its past weakness and shame. Deng's assertiveness gave way to outright anger. His immediate muttered comments were lost to the British record, but appeared to include the remark that Thatcher should be 'bombarded' out of her obstinacy.

Deng returned to the offensive by repeating his rejection of continued British rule in more categorical terms. If he agreed to let Britain stay in Hong Kong beyond 1997, he said, he would be no better than the traitors of the Qing dynasty who had first yielded Chinese soil to Britain under treaties which were illegal and invalid. He could not do it. China must resume sovereignty over Hong Kong, and sovereignty must include administration. The British flag would have to go. The British governor would have to go. And it would be China alone which decided what policies were 'suitable' for Hong Kong in the future. None the less, he said, China hoped that Britain would 'co-operate' in the transition, and it was prepared to enter into 'discussions' to that end. But it would not be bound by their results. If they failed to produce an agreement acceptable to China within two years, then China would announce its own policies for Hong Kong unilaterally. The meeting was over.

THE BRITISH had not foreseen that the Chinese might choose to fix a deadline to negotiations; and Deng's pre-emptive rejection of both sovereignty and continued British administration had been delivered in terms stronger than expected. But an agreement to negotiate had been reached, and the disaster of a deadlock had been averted. As the principals adjourned for lunch, it was left to Cradock, the British ambassador, and Zhang, the Chinese vice-foreign minister, to set about drafting a communique. Their brief statement showed only slight traces of the cracks over which it had been papered.

It said: 'The leaders of the two countries held far-reaching talks in a friendly atmosphere on the future of Hong Kong. Both leaders made clear their respective positions on the subject. They agreed to enter talks through diplomatic channels following the visit with the common aim of maintaining the stability and prosperity of Hong Kong.'

The communique pleased the British by virtue of its omissions. Though both Deng and Zhao had treated China's sovereignty over Hong Kong as a premise of any further discussion, the communique spoke only of 'respective positions' on the 'future' of Hong Kong. And, since the communique summarised for the record the basis on which the negotiations were to begin, the British could now assert that both sides were approaching the negotiating table without any formal preconditions having been acknowledged - and, in particular, with the British claim to sovereignty over Hong Kong intact, if not unchallenged.

A similar thought struck the Chinese, but somewhat later. At three o'clock that afternoon, when the text of the communique came chattering off the wires of the official New China News Agency, it proved to have gained a coda added unilaterally by China. This said: 'The Chinese government's position on the recovery of the whole region of Hong Kong is unequivocal and known to all.'

The communique appeared while Thatcher was giving her own main press conference of the Peking visit. When a journalist asked her to comment on China's commitment to 'recovery of the whole region of Hong Kong', she was provoked into repeating publicly the position which had so shocked Deng. 'There are three treaties in existence,' she said. 'We stick by our treaties unless we decide on something else. At the moment, we stick by our treaties.'

This was dangerous ground on which to break cover. But the more Thatcher reflected on the cavalier way in which the Chinese leaders were dismissing Britain's rights under international law, the more irritated she became. Enough was enough.

THATCHER'S COLD was wearing her down. Her voice, husky at the start of the press conference, was a croak by the end. Worse, she had lost her footing on the steps leading from the Great Hall of the People down into Tiananmen Square at lunchtime, and had tumbled to her knees before the waiting television cameras. The image which dominated the news in Hong Kong that evening was rich in portent: a British prime minister, in Peking to negotiate the territory's future, kowtowing towards the mausoleum of Chairman Mao Tse-tung at the centre of Tiananmen Square.

When Thatcher hosted her farewell banquet at the Great Hall of the People a few hours later, Zhao was again the only senior leader to attend. The British would undoubtedly have been more sensitive to the snub they were receiving, had they been aware that Deng and all the other Communist grandees had chosen to pass up Thatcher's banquet in favour of another one taking place the same night in the same building, hosted by Kim Il-sung.

While Zhao was left to exchange politely pointed speeches with Thatcher about their 'valuable and stimulating' talks, Kim was down the corridor, toasting 'militant friendship' and 'the raging flames of war against common enemies' late into the evening to an applauding audience led by Deng Xiaoping and a roll-call of the Politburo.

The Thatcher banquet ended sober and early, the Prime Minister appearing not merely tired but also just a shade chastened. She now appreciated, perhaps for the first time, just how difficult and time-consuming the Hong Kong question would prove. She took her leave of Peking that night with just a hint of conciliation, saying to Zhao: 'Our conversations have enabled me to attain a clearer insight into China's affairs, and a close personal understanding of the Chinese government's point of view. This complies with an old Chinese saying, which goes: 'Seeing for one's self is a hundred times better than hearing from others'.'

Robert Cottrell's book on the Hong Kong settlement will be published next June by John Murray.

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

SOUTH AFRICA ANC GOVT CUTS AIDS DEATH BY A THIRD SINCE 2004


South African AIDS death rate falls by a third: UN report

China Daily Africa

The number of the AIDS deaths had decreased by nearly 30 percent in South Africa since 2004, said a UN official in a report.

The death toll was down from 330,000 in 2004 to 240,000 in 2012, said the Joint UN Program on HIV and AIDS (UNAIDS) country coordinator for South Africa Catherine Sozi as addressing the pandemic in the southeastern port city of Durban.

The number of the HIV-infected people had also been down in South Africa, according Catherine Sozi.

"Between 2004 and 2012, the number of new HIV infections fell from an estimated 540,000 to 370,000," said the coordinator.

"The general message is that it is good news," said the UN official.

She explained that the figures were compiled from varied sources like the census and surveys in 2012.

South Africa is supposed to have more people with HIV/AIDS than any other country in the world, with an estimated 280,000 people dying of HIV/AIDS in 2010.

As the largest economy in Africa, South Africa is home to more than 53 million people.

It was believed that the great success in reducing the AIDS deaths and HIV-infections should be attributed to the South African government's efforts in fighting the HIV/AIDS.

"The South African government's increased roll-out of the antiretroviral (ARV) therapy program had averted an estimated 780,000 deaths between 2004 and 2012," said the coordinator.

Approximately 2.7 million people infected with HIV/AIDS are currently receiving ARV drugs in South Africa, making it the largest ARV program to save HIV/AIDS people in the world.

Catherine Sozi was optimistic over the effect in curbing South African HIV/AIDS in the coming years, predicting the death number of the AIDS will fall to below 150,000 in 2016.

South African Minister of Health Aaron Motsoaledi said on Friday that his department hoped that people with HIV/AIDS to receive ARVs could reach 4.6 million by 2016, stressing it will be very important for every South African to be tested for HIV/AIDS at least once a year.

CHINA's FIVE PRINCIPLES IN ADDRESSING SYRIAN ISSUE


China raises five principles for political settlement of Syrian issue

Xinhua

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Monday put forward five principles for a political settlement of the Syrian issue during a press briefing with Chinese media.

First, the issue of Syria must be resolved through political means.

China welcomes and supports the convocation of Geneva II on Jan. 22, 2014. This will be an important opportunity to promote the political settlement of the Syrian issue. China calls on all parties in Syria to actively participate in Geneva II.

Military action is no answer to the issue of Syria. All parties should voice their demands through dialogue and negotiation rather than seeking gains through armed conflict. We call on all parties in Syria to seize the opportunity presented by Geneva II, commit themselves to the full, balanced and effective implementation of the Geneva Communique, and support and work closely with the UN Secretary-General and the Joint Special Representative of the United Nations and the League of Arab States for Syria in their mediation efforts.

The meeting in Geneva, marking the beginning of dialogue and negotiation, should be an ongoing process. Thus, a clearly defined follow-up mechanism is needed to keep the dialogue, negotiation and other political efforts going. It is essential that negotiation is not just launched, but more importantly pushed forward until practical results are achieved. The meeting in Geneva should be an open platform and the door of peace talks should be open to all parties in Syria committed to a political settlement so that they will take an active part in the process and play their role.

While dialogue and negotiation are going on, all parties in Syria must put an end to all armed conflict and violence, taking credible and visible actions such as humanitarian pause, ceasefire region by region or phase by phase, and disengagement as first steps to build and enhance mutual trust. The international community should provide assistance within the UN framework to support and monitor the ceasefire.

Second, the future of Syria must be decided by its own people.

To resolve the issue of Syria, efforts must be made at the domestic, regional and international levels. The political transition process in Syria must be Syrian-led, and the future of Syria, ultimately, can only be decided by the Syrian people themselves.

The international community must uphold the UN Charter and the basic norms governing international relations, be committed to maintaining Syria's sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity and respect the will and choice of the Syrian people. The international community needs to take a just, balanced and impartial approach in dealing with all parties in Syria, create favorable conditions and a necessary environment for the formulation of a political transition plan and avoid external imposition of political solutions on Syria. It is necessary to uphold and give play to the role of the United Nations as the main channel of mediation.

China values and supports the positive role played by regional countries in seeking a political settlement of the Syrian issue.

Third, an inclusive political transition process must be promoted.

The goals of the process are as follows: to stop the bloodshed, oppose terrorism and restore stability and order; to ensure equal opportunities for all ethnicities, religions and sects, establish a just and reasonable power structure and political arrangement, and meet the aspiration of the Syrian people for a democratic, pluralistic and harmonious country; to make headway in the reconstruction process; and to turn Syria into an important force for peace and stability in the Middle East.

China has taken note of the differences and disagreements among parties in Syria in their positions and demands. Inflexibility can only lead to a dead end while mutual understanding and accommodation will point a way forward. We hope that all parties in Syria act in the interest of the future and destiny of the country and overall interest of the people, summon up political will, meet each other half way, and blaze a "middle way" by drawing on useful regional and international experience while keeping in mind Syria's national conditions and the interests of all parties.

China hopes that parties in Syria reach agreement at an early date on the specific arrangements and reasonable timeframe for the political transition process, form, on the basis of mutual consent, a transitional governing body with full executive powers, and maintain the continuity and effectiveness of Syria's governmental institutions. China respects and supports all the proposals on political transition that are widely acceptable to parties in Syria.

Fourth, national reconciliation and unity must be achieved in Syria.

Realizing national reconciliation is a longstanding and arduous task facing Syria. The national reconciliation process, as part and parcel of the political settlement of the Syria issue, should be advanced in parallel with the political transition process in a mutually reinforcing manner. To this end, parties in Syria should release a greater number of arbitrarily detained persons; the political process must be broad-based and inclusive so that the views of all parties in Syria are fully reflected and the rights and interests of ethnic minorities, refugees and women are truly guaranteed; acts of ethnic, religious and sectarian discrimination, instigation and retaliation must be prevented; national reconciliation dialogue must be launched in the interest of national unity of Syria;and human rights and basic freedom freedom must be respected and protected.

Fifth, humanitarian assistance must be delivered in Syria and its neighboring countries.

The international community needs to step up humanitarian assistance to the people of Syria and ensure that both refugees outside Syria and people in need inside Syria have timely access to such assistance. As has been urged by the Security Council, all parties in Syria ought to fully cooperate with the United Nations and relevant international agencies as they carry out humanitarian relief operations in all conflict-affected regions. Their safe and unhindered access to these regions must be ensured. The international community should uphold the principles of humanity, impartiality and neutrality, adhere to the guiding humanitarian principles of the United Nations, and make sure that humanitarian issues are not politicized and humanitarian assistance is not militarized.

CHINA AND RUSSIA UNITED ON SYRIA


China stresses political solution to Syria crisis

Related: China's 5 principles in addressing Syrian issue

Xinhua

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Tuesday reiterated China's stance for a political settlement of the Syrian issue, calling for continued political efforts to keep the negotiations going.

Wang made the remarks while discussing with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov Tuesday night about the peace talks on Syria, known as the Geneva II conference.

The peace conference was initiated by Washington and Moscow in May and will start Wednesday in the Swiss city of Montreux to seek the establishment of a transitional governing body in Syria to lead the country out of a protracted conflict that broke out in March 2011.

China hoped that the negotiations were not just launched, but, more importantly, pushed forward, Wang said, adding that his country put forward on Monday five principles for a political settlement of the Syrian issue.

Both delegations of the Syrian government and opposition arrived in Geneva, Switzerland Tuesday evening for the conference so as to embark on a dialogue for the first time since the eruption of their conflict.

Wang said the most pressing task now was to realize a cease-fire and stop violence as soon as possible.

The Chinese foreign minister also stressed the importance of reaching consensus on a framework for peace talks and establish a follow-up mechanism so as to keep the dialogue, negotiations and other political efforts going forward.

Lavrov said that the situation in Syria was very complicated, and the only way out of the crisis was to nudge the Syrian government and the opposition to come to the negotiating table, and reach some consensus on their country's future.

Lavrov reiterated that Russia and China shared the same stance on a political solution to the Syria conflict, calling on the two sides to continue their close communication.


===================

Confidence, patience, persistence needed in Syria peace talks: Chinese FM

Xinhua

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Wednesday said confidence, patience and persistence are needed in Syria peace talks.

The path of peace talks between different parties from Syria is bound to be tortuous with twists and turns, therefore confidence, patience and persistence are needed in order to find a middle way, said Wang at the Geneva II conference on Syria held here on Wednesday.

"Everyone who loves peace views this meeting a milestone," he said, noting that it has been not easy for different parties from Syria to sit down together for negotiation.

"So we should cherish this opportunity and keep on talking, bearing in mind that understanding each other and making compromise are important in producing a resolution," Wang said.

To resolve the conflicts in Syria is urgent, while the priority is to cease fire and stop violence, Wang told representatives at the meeting held in the lakeside city of Montreux.

"Military actions are doomed to fail," he said, urging different parties from Syria to stick to the road of political resolution, so as to find a middle way that suits Syria's real national situation and addresses interests of both sides.

He proposed that Syria learn from other nations as how to settle domestic disputes, and set up a transitional governing body that is recognized by both sides and exerts full administerial power.

"The talk should be carried on step-by-step," Wang said. "They should reach agreement in principles first, before making progress in less controversial issues."

He noted that the Geneva conference was a lasting process. "It should become an open platform with follow-up mechanism provided so as to boost involvement of all those who would like to resolve the problem," Wang said.

The minister called for respect for Syrian people's will for unity, and pointed out the danger of split of the country.

He said he believed the stability of Syria is crucial to regional security, and warned against the spread of terrorism and extremism.

Wang stressed that voices from all parties be equally heard, and all ethnical and religious groups and factions have their rights and interests balanced, especially minority groups, women and refugees.

"We should be wary of any behavior of discrimination, instigation and revenge," he said.

As for the international community, Wang said it should play a positive role as a major mediator, giving advice that is helpful for reconciliation, but must not impose any political scheme on Syria.

"China is here for peace and for reconciliation," he said. "And we stick to our view that the conflict should be resolved through peace talks."

He reiterated the "five insists": insisting on political resort, Syrian people's own decisions, political transition with inclusiveness, unity and reconciliation, and humanitarian aid.

"To achieve the peaceful resolution, China gives its support for the destruction of Syria's chemical weapon and its fleet are currently escorting in the Mediterranean Sea," he said.

China has also sent more than 100 million yuan (16.7 million U.S. dollars) to Syria and its neighboring countries for people suffering from the turmoil.

It recently offered Syria relief worth 20 million yuan. Wang announced at the conference that more aid worth another 20 million yuan is to be provided.

The United Nations-backed international conference, dubbed Geneva II after an initial meeting was held on June 30, 2012, is aimed to end the three-year Syrian conflict that has so far killed at least 130,000.

It is chaired by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and brings together representatives from both the Syrian government and opposition organizations for the first time in three years.

[video] REVOLUTIONARY VENEZUELA's TELESUR CHANNEL ON LENIN

RAUL CASTRO WARNS OF EVER PRESENT DANGER OF NEO-COLONIAL INFILTRATION OF THE CUBAN REVOLUTION



[source]

Cuban President Raul Castro has warned that Cuba is confronting "ideological and political subversion aimed at toppling its socialist system".

In a speech commemorating the 55th anniversary of the Cuban revolution, Mr Castro said "global power centres" were "subtly introducing neo-liberal and neo-colonial thinking" into Cuba.

But the president said he was confident the country "would emerge victorious".

He was speaking in Santiago, where his brother Fidel declared victory in 1959.

Fidel Castro and his 9,000-strong guerrilla army overthrew US-backed ruler Fulgencio Batista on 1 January 1959.

Fidel Castro went on to lead the country for almost five decades, handing power over to Raul in July 2006 when he became seriously ill.

Raul Castro led the commemorative anniversary gala at Cespedes park in Cuba's second largest city, Santiago - the same spot from where his brother told his supporters in 1959 that the overthrow of Fulgencio Batista had been successful.

"It's been 55 years of constant struggle against the plans of 11 US administrations, that with varying hostility, have not stopped in their goal to change the economic and social regime brought about by the revolution," he said.

Cuba has long blamed the US and the trade embargo it has been enforcing since 1960 for the island's economic woes.

But in Wednesday's speech Mr Castro acknowledged mistakes had been made: "The revolution's programme will be updated every five years so that it can always answer to the true interests of the people and promptly correct any errors."

Mr Castro has been implementing a series of economic reforms since he took over from his brother, including easing regulations on loans, home and car ownership, and loosening travel restrictions.

In December, he shook hands with US President Barack Obama in a gesture which led to speculation as to whether it would signal a thawing of relations between the two foes.

But on Wednesday, Mr Castro defended the revolution, saying it "continues the same, without compromise with anybody, absolute with the people".

Fidel Castro, 87, did not attend the ceremony, but a Spanish newspaper journalist who spoke to him in December said he was "healthy and alert" during the 2.5-hour interview.

VIDEO & TEXT OF SYRIAN FOREIGN MINISTER's EXCELLENT SPEECH AT GENEVA II



Geneva2 begins with participation of Syria's official delegation, headed by al-Moallem 

Sana

Finally, today, the moment of truth; the truth that many have systematically tried to bury in a series of campaigns of misinformation, deception and fabrication leading to killing and terror.  A truth that refused to be buried, a truth clear for all to see – the delegation of the Syrian Arab Republic representing the Syrian people, the government, the state, the Army and the President - Bashar al-Assad.

It is regrettable that seated amongst us are representatives of countries that have the blood of Syrians on their hands

It is regrettable, Ladies and Gentlemen, that seated amongst us today in this room, are representatives of countries that have the blood of Syrians on their hands, countries that have exported terrorism along with clemency for the perpetrators, as if it was their God given right to determine who will go to heaven and who will go to hell.  Countries that have prevented believers from visiting holy places of worship whilst abetting, financing and supporting terrorists.  Countries that gave themselves the authority to grant and deny legitimacy to others as they saw fit, never looking at their own archaic glasshouses before throwing stones at acclaimed fortified towers. Countries that shamelessly lecture us in democracy, in development and in progress whilst drowning in their own ignorance and medieval norms.  Countries that have become accustomed to being entirely owned by kings and princes who have the sole right to distribute their national wealth granting their associates whilst denying those who fall out of favor.

They lectured Syria – a distinguished, virtuous, sovereign state, they lectured her on honour whilst they themselves were immersed in the mud of enslavement, infanticide and other medieval practices.  After all their efforts and subsequent failures, their masks fell from their quivering faces, to reveal their perverse ambitions.  A desire to destabilize and destroy Syria by exporting their national product: terrorism.  They used their petrodollars to buy weapons, recruit mercenaries and saturate airtime covering up their mindless brutality with lies under the guise of the so-called “ Syrian revolution that will fulfill the aspirations of the Syrian people.”

Ladies and Gentlemen, how is what has happened and continues to plague Syria, meeting these aspirations?  How can a Chechen, Afghani, Saudi, Turkish or even French and English terrorists deliver on the aspirations of the Syrian people, and with what? An Islamic state that knows nothing of Islam except perverse Wahhabism? Who declared anyway that the Syrian people aspire to live thousands of years in the past?

In Syria, the wombs of pregnant women are butchered and their foetuses killed

In Syria, Ladies and Gentlemen, the wombs of pregnant women are butchered and their foetuses killed; women are raped, dead or alive, in practices so heinous, so vile and repulsive that they can only be attributed to their perverse doctrine.  In Syria, Ladies and Gentlemen, men are slaughtered in front of their children in the name of this revolution; worse still, this is done whilst the children of these foreign perpetrators sing and dance.  In Syria, how can so-called revolutionaries cannibalize a man’s heart and claim to promote freedom, democracy and a better life?

Under the pretext of the “Great Syrian Revolution,” civilians, clergymen, women and children are killed, victims are indiscriminately blown up in streets and buildings regardless of their political views or ideologies; books and libraries are burned, graves are dug up and artifacts stolen.  In the name of the revolution, children are killed in their schools and students in their universities, women are extorted in the name of jihad al-nikah and other forms, mosques are shelled whilst worshipers kneel at prayer, heads are severed and hung in the streets, people are burned alive in a true holocaust that history and many countries will deny without being accused of anti-Semitism.

In the name of a revolution, “to free the oppressed Syrian people from the regime and to spread democracy,” does a father blow himself up with his wife and children to prevent foreign intruders from entering his home?  Most of us in this room are fathers - I ask you then, what would compel a man to kill his own family to protect them from freedom fighting monsters.  This is what happened in Adra, a place that most of you have not heard of but where the same alien monsters attacked: killing, looting, beheading, slaughtering, raping and burning people alive.  You have heard nothing of this brutality for sure, yet you have heard of other places where the same heinous crimes were committed and where the same blood soaked finger was pointed at the Syrian Army and government.  And when these flagrant lies were no longer credible, they stopped spinning their web of deceit.

This is what their masters ordered them to do, these countries that spearheaded the war against Syria, trying to increase their influence in the region with bribes and money, exporting human monsters fully soaked in abhorrent Wahabi ideology, all at the expense of Syrian blood.  From this stage, loud and clear, you know as well as I do that they will not stop in Syria, even if some sitting in this room refuse to acknowledge or consider themselves immune.

Ladies and Gentlemen, everything you have heard would not have been possible, had our border sharing countries been good neighbours during these challenging years.  Unfortunately they were far from it; with backstabbers to the North, silent bystanders to the truth in the West, a weak South accustomed to doing the bidding of others, or the tired and exhausted East still reeling from the plots to destroy it along with Syria.

Misery and destruction, which has engulfed Syria, has been made possible by the decision of Erdogan’s government

Indeed, this misery and destruction, which has engulfed Syria, has been made possible by the decision of Erdogan’s government to invite and host these criminal terrorists before they entered into Syria.  Clearly, oblivious to the fact that magic eventually turns on the magician, it is now beginning to taste the sour seed it has sown.  For terrorism knows no religion, and is loyal only unto itself.   Erdogan’s government has recklessly morphed from a zero problems with its neighbours policy to zero foreign policy and international diplomacy altogether, crucially leaving it with zero credibility.

Nevertheless, it continued on the same atrocious path falsely believing that the dream of Sayyid Qutb and Mohammad Abdel Wahab before him was finally being realized.  They wreaked havoc from Tunisia, to Libya, to Egypt and then to Syria, determined to achieve an illusion that only exists in their sick minds.  Despite the fact that it has proven to be a failure, they nevertheless are still determined to pursue it.  Logically speaking, this can only be described as stupidity, because if you don’t learn from history, you will lose sight of the present; and history tells us: if your neighbor's house is on fire, it is impossible for you to remain safe.

Some neighbours started fires within Syria whilst others recruited terrorists from around the globe – and here we are confronted with shockingly farcical double standards: 83 nationalities are fighting in Syria - nobody denounces this, nobody condemns it, nobody reconsiders their position - and they impertinently continue to call it a glorious SYRIAN Revolution!  While when a few scores of young resistant fighters supported the Syrian Army in a few places, all hell broke loose and it suddenly became foreign intervention!  Demands were made for the departure of foreign troops and the protection of Syrian sovereignty and for it not to be violated.  Here I affirm, Syria - the sovereign and independent state, will continue to do whatever it takes to defend herself with whatever means it deems necessary, without paying the least bit of attention to any uproar, denunciations, statements or positions expressed by others.  These have been and always will be Syria’s sovereign decisions.

They imposed sanctions on our food, our bread and our children’s milk

Despite all of this, the Syrian people remained steadfast; and the response was to impose sanctions on our food, our bread and our children’s milk.  To starve the population, pushing them into sickness and death under the injustice of these sanctions.  At the same time, factories were looted and burned, crippling our food and pharmaceutical industries; hospitals and healthcare centers were destroyed; our railroads and electricity lines sabotaged, and even our places of worship - Christian and Muslim – were not spared their terrorism.

When all of this failed, America threatened to strike Syria, fabricating with her allies, Western and Arab, the story about the use of chemical weapons, which failed to convince even their own public, let alone ours.  Countries that celebrate democracy, freedom and human rights regrettably only choose to speak the language of blood, war, colonialism and hegemony.  Democracy is imposed with fire, freedom with warplanes and human rights by human killing, because they have become accustomed to the world doing their bidding: if they want something, it will happen; if they don’t, it won’t.  They have heedlessly forgotten that the perpetrators who blew themselves up in New York follow the same doctrine and come from the same source as those blowing themselves up in Syria.  They have heedlessly forgotten that the terrorist that was in America yesterday is in Syria today, and who knows where he will be tomorrow.  What is certain, however, is that he will not stop here.  Afghanistan is an ideal lesson for anyone who wants to learn – anyone!  Unfortunately, most do not want to learn; neither America nor some of the ‘civilized’ western countries that follow its lead, starting from the city of lights to the kingdom over which “the sun never set,” in the past; despite the fact that they have all felt the bitter taste of terrorism in the past.

And then suddenly they became “Friends of Syria.”  Four of these ‘friends’ are autocratic, oppressive monarchies that know nothing of a civil state or democracy, whilst others are the same colonial powers which occupied, pillaged and partitioned Syria less than one hundred years ago.  These so called ‘friends’ are now convening conferences to publicly declare their friendship with the Syrian people, whilst covertly facilitating their hardship and destroying their livelihoods.  They openly express their outrage over the humanitarian plight of Syrians whilst deceiving the international community of their complicity.  If you were truly concerned about the humanitarian situation in Syria, you would remove your strangle hold on her economy by lifting the sanctions and the embargo, and by partnering with her government in tightening security by fighting the influx of weapons and terrorists. Only then can we assure you that we will be well as we once were, without your deep concern for our wellbeing.

Some of you may be asking yourselves: Are foreigners the sole manufacturers of the happenings in Syria?  No Ladies and Gentlemen, Syrians amongst us here, having been legitimized by foreign agendas, have played a contributing role as facilitators and implementers.  They did this at the expense of Syrian blood and the people whose aspirations they claim to represent, whilst they themselves were divided hundreds of times and their leaders on the ground were fleeing far and wide.  They sold themselves to Israel becoming her eyes on the ground, and her fingers on the trigger for Syria’s destruction; and when they failed, Israel intervened directly to reduce the capabilities of the Syrian Army and thus ensuring the continued implementation of her decades old plan for Syria.

Our people were being slaughtered while opposition figures legitimized by foreign agendas were living in five star hotels

Our people were being slaughtered while they were living in five star hotels; they opposed from abroad, met abroad betraying Syria and selling themselves to the highest foreign bidder.  And yet, they still claim to speak in the name of the Syrian people! No, Ladies and Gentlemen, anyone wishing to speak on behalf of the Syrian people cannot be a traitor to their cause and an agent for their enemies.  Those wishing to speak on behalf of the people of Syria should do so from within her borders: living in her destroyed houses, sending their children to her schools in the morning not knowing if they will return safe from mortar shelling, tolerating the freezing cold winters because of the shortage in heating oil and queuing for hours to buy bread for their families because sanctions have prevented us from importing wheat when we were once exporters.  Anyone wanting to speak in the name of the Syrian people should first endure three years of terrorism, confronting it head on, and then come here and speak on behalf of the Syrian people.

Syrian has welcomed hundreds of international journalists and facilitated their mobility

Ladies and gentlemen,

the Syrian Arab Republic – people and state, has fulfilled its duties.  It has welcomed hundreds of international journalists and facilitated their mobility, security and access; and they in turn have reflected the stark and horrific realities they witnessed to their audiences, realities that have perplexed many Western media organisations who couldn’t bear their propaganda and narrative being exposed and contradicted.  The examples are too many to count.  We allowed international aid and relief organizations into the country, but the clandestine agents of certain parties sitting here, obstructed them from reaching those in dire need of aid.  They came under terrorist attack several times, whilst we, as a state, did our duty in protecting them and facilitating their work.  We issued numerous amnesties and released thousands of prisoners, some even members of armed groups, at the anger and dismay of their victim’s families; these families though, like the rest of us, ultimately accepted that Syria’s interests come before anything else, and hence we must conceal our wounds and rise above hatred and rancor.

What have you done, you who claim to speak on behalf of the Syrian people. Where is your vision for this great country? Where are your ideas or your political manifesto?  Who are your agents of change on the ground other than your armed criminal gangs?  I am certain that you have nothing and this is only too apparent in the areas that your mercenaries have occupied or to use your words “liberated.”

In these areas, have you freed the population or have you hijacked their moderate culture to enforce your radical and oppressive practices?  Have you implemented your development agenda by building schools and health centres?  No, you have destroyed them and allowed polio to return after it had previously been eradicated in Syria.  Have you protected Syria’s artifacts and museums?  No, you have looted our national sites for your personal profit.  Have you demonstrated your commitment to justice and human rights?  No, you have enforced public executions and beheadings.  In short, you have done nothing at all except muster the disgrace and shame of begging America to strike Syria.  Even the opposition, over which you are the self-appointed masters and guardians, do not acknowledge you or the methods in which you manage your own affairs, let alone the affairs of a country.

A country they want to homogenize; not in the sectarian, ethnic or religious sense, but rather in a warped ideological sense.  Anyone against them, whether Christian or Muslim, is an infidel; they killed Muslims of all sects and targeted Syrian Christians with severity.  Even nuns and bishops were targeted, kidnapping them after they attacked Ma’loula, the last community that still speaks the language of Jesus Christ.  They did all this to force Syrian Christians to flee their country.  But little did they know, that in Syria we are one.  When Christianity is attacked all Syrians are Christians, when mosques are targeted all Syrians are Muslims.  Every Syrian is from Raqqa, Lattakia, Sweida, Homs or the bleeding Aleppo when any one of these places is targeted.  Their abhorrent attempts to sow sectarian and religious sedition will never be embraced by any levelheaded Syrian.  In short, Ladies and Gentlemen, your “glorious Syrian revolution” has left no mortal sin uncommitted.

There is another side to this dark gloomy picture.  A light at the end of the tunnel shinning through the Syrian people’s determination and steadfastness, the Syrian Army’s courage in protecting our citizens and the Syrian state’s resilience and perseverance.  During everything that has happened, there are states that have shown us true friendship, honest states that stood on the side of right against wrong, even when the wrong was clear for all to see.  On behalf of the Syrian people and state, I would like to thank Russia and China for respecting Syria’s sovereignty and independence.  Russia has been a true champion on the international stage strongly defending, not only with words but also with deeds, the founding principles of the United Nations of respecting the sovereignty of states.  Similarly China, the BRICS countries, Iran, Iraq and other Arab and Muslim countries, in addition to African and Latin American countries, have also genuinely safeguarded the aspirations of the Syrian people and not the ambitions of other governments for Syria.

The Syrian people, like other people of the region, aspire to more freedom, justice and human rights

Yes, Ladies and Gentlemen, the Syrian people, like other people of the region, aspire to more freedom, justice and human rights; they aspire to more plurality and democracy, to a better Syria, a safe, prosperous and healthy Syria.  They aspire to building strong institutions not destroying them, to safeguarding our national artifacts and heritage sites not looting and demolishing them.  They aspire to a strong national army, which protects our honour, our people and our national wealth, an army that defends Syria’s borders, her sovereignty and independence.  They do not, Ladies and Gentlemen, aspire to a mercenary army ‘Free’ to kidnap civilians for ransom or to use them as human shields, ‘Free’ to steal humanitarian aid, extort the poor and illegally trade in the organs of living women and children, ‘Free’ to canibalise human hearts and livers, barbequing heads, recruiting child soldiers and raping women.  All of this is done with the might of arms; arms provided by countries, represented here, who claim to be championing “moderate groups”.  Tell us, for God’s sake, where is the moderation in everything I have described?

Where are these vague moderate groups that you are hiding behind?  Are they the same old groups that continue to be supported militarily and publicly by the West, that have undergone an even uglier face-lift in the hope of convincing us that they are fighting terrorism?  We all know that no matter how hard their propaganda machine tries to polish their image under the name of moderation, their extremism and terrorism is one and the same.  They know, as we all do, that under the pretext of supporting these groups, al-Qaeda and its affiliates are being armed in Syria, Iraq and other countries in the region.

This is the reality, Ladies and Gentlemen, so wake up to the undeniable reality that the West is supporting some Arab countries to supply lethal weapons to al-Qaeda.  The West publically claims to be fighting terrorism, whilst in fact it is covertly nourishing it.  Anyone who cannot see this truth is either ignorantly blind or willfully so in order to finish what they have begun.

Is this the Syria that you want? The loss of thousands of martyrs and our once cherished safety and national security replaced with apocalyptic devastation. Are these the aspirations of the Syrian people that you wanted to fulfill?  No, Ladies and Gentlemen, Syria will not remain so, and that is why we are here.  Despite all that has been done by some, we have come to save Syria: to stop the beheadings, to stop the cannibalizing and the butchering.  We have come to help mothers and children return to the homes they were driven out of by terrorists.  We have come to protect the civil and open-minded nature of the state, to stop the march of the Tatars and the Mongols across our region.  We have come to prevent the collapse of the entire Middle East, to protect civilization, culture and diversity, and to preserve the dialogue of civilizations in the birthplace of religions.  We have come to protect tolerant Islam that has been distorted, and to protect the Christians of the Levant.  We are here to tell our Syrian expatriates, to return to their home country because they will always be foreigners anywhere else, and regardless of our differences we are all still brothers and sisters.

We have come to stop terrorism as other countries that have experienced its bitter taste have done, whilst affirming loudly and consistently that a dialogue between Syrians is the only solution; but as with other countries that have been struck by terrorism, we have a constitutional duty to defend our citizens and we shall continue to strike terrorism that attacks Syrians regardless of their political affiliations.  We have come to hold those accountable, for as long as particular countries continue to support terrorism, this conference will bear no fruit.  Political pluralism and terrorism cannot coexist in the same landscape.  Politics can only prosper by fighting terrorism; it cannot grow in its shadow.

Nobody has the authority to grant or withdraw legitimacy from a president, a government, a constitution, a law or anything else in Syria except Syrians themselves

We are here as representatives of the Syrian people and the state; but let it be clear to all, – and experience is the best proof – that nobody has the authority to grant or withdraw legitimacy from a president, a government, a constitution, a law or anything else in Syria except Syrians themselves; this is their constitutional right and duty.  Therefore, whatever agreement is reached here will be subject to a national referendum.  We are tasked with conveying our people’s desires, not with determining their destiny; those who want to listen to the will of the Syrian people should not appoint themselves as their spokesperson.  Syrians alone have the right to choose their government, their parliament and their constitution; everything else is just talk and has no significance.

Finally, to all those here and everyone watching around the world: in Syria we are fighting terrorism, terrorism which has destroyed and continues to destroy; terrorism which since the 1980’s Syria has been calling, on deaf ears, for a unified front to defeat it.  Terrorism has struck in America, France, Britain, Russia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan; the list goes on and it continues to spread.  Let us all cooperate to fight it, let’s work hand in hand to stop its black, horrifying and obscurantist ideology.  Then, let us as Syrians stand united to focus on Syria and start rebuilding its social fabric and material structures.  As I said, dialogue is the foundation to this process, and despite our gratitude to the host country, we affirm that the real dialogue between Syrians should in fact be on Syrian soil and under Syrian skies.  Exactly one year ago, the Syrian government put forward its vision for a political solution; think of how much innocent blood we would have saved had some countries resorted to reason instead of terrorism and destruction.  For a whole year, we have been calling for dialogue, but terrorism continued to strike at the Syrian state, her people and institutions.

Today, in this gathering of Arab and Western powers, we are presented with a simple choice: we can choose to fight terrorism and extremism together and to start a new political process, or you can continue to support terrorism in Syria.  Let us reject and isolate the black hands and the false faces, which publicly smile but covertly feed terrorist ideology, striking Syria today, but ultimately spreading to infect us all.  This is the moment of truth and destiny; let us rise to the challenge.

Thank you .

Al-Moallem: We hope that Geneva Conference be a first step to start Syrian-Syrian dialogue in Syria

Later, Minister al-Moallem said, "The orchestra that we have heard from some sides today and the content of some hostile speeches from some states, to the extent that in some minutes we seemed to have heard old rhetoric with no difference except for the place of delivering them, do not deserve to be answered."

Concluding the second session of the conference, al-Moallem added, "Because we want to stop bloodshed in Syria, to protect the lives of citizens, to build Syria again and because, as a state, we play our constitutional, political, security and social role to save Syria from what is going on, we are here and we hope the Geneva conference will be a first step on the way to start Syrian-Syrian dialogue on the Syrian territories."

"I thank those who have stood by us from the friendly countries for three years so far and we say to all that we will continue hitting terrorism wherever it was with one hand and we will build Syria democratically, politically and socially with the other," al-Moallem said.

Minister al-Moallem added, "I say to those who are interfering in the Syrian affairs through any sort of interference: three years and you are still trying; have you not become desperate yet? …  Enough! … Put your hands off Syria so that we can indeed achieve the people's aspirations of a secure and developed life." 

BLACK PANTHER NEWSPAPER TO MAKE A RETURN NEXT MONTH


The Black Panther Newspaper will hit the streets again in February. Articles and news about Party alumni, Political Prisoners, current events, new books on the BPP Legacy .

Elbert "Big Man" has a article inside the issue and Emory Douglas new art is on the back cover. Sponsored by It's About Time Archives. Don't missing this special issue. More information will follow.

- Billy X Jennings, Black Panther Alumni

BEAUTIFUL ANTI-WHITE SUPREMACIST (ANTI-RACIST) SOVIET POSTERS

1. “Greetings to the fighters against fascism!”

"Greetings to the fighters against fascism!"
by V. B. Koretsky, poster, 1937

2. “Africa Is Fighting, Africa Will Prevail!”

"Africa Is Fighting, Africa Will Prevail!"
by V.B. Koretsky, poster, 1981

3. “He carried Africa in his heart (Lumumba).”

"He carried Africa in his heart (Lumumba)."
by V.B. Koretsky, poster

4. “USSR is the shock brigade of the international proletariat.”

"USSR is the shock brigade of the international proletariat."
by G. Klutsis, poster, 1931

5. Sketch for the mural of the club named after Dzerzhinsky

Sketch for the mural of the club named after Dzerzhinsky
by Brigade of Vkhutein, 1928

6. To the Fight!

To the Fight!
by B. I. Prorokov, poster, 1950s

7. N.S. Khrushchev’s Meeting with American Workers

N.S. Khrushchev's Meeting with American Workers
by Dmitri Oboznenko and Yaroslav Serov, 1961

8. “The Dawn of Freedom Cannot Be Extinguished!”

"The Dawn of Freedom Cannot Be Extinguished!"
by V. Karakashev, 1967

9. Playing Ball (Octobers)

Playing Ball (Octobers)
by G. I. Bublev, late 1920s

10. “People of Africa Will Overpower the Colonizers!”

"People of Africa Will Overpower the Colonizers!"
by Kukryniksy, poster, 1960

11. Soviet Constitution Day

Soviet Constitution Day
by Sergei Luchishkin, mural, 1932

12. “I will never forget a friend if we became friends in Moscow!”

"I will never forget a friend if we became friends in Moscow!"
V.V. Sachkov, postcard, 1964

13. A Song of Peace (Paul Robeson in Pickskills, NY)

A Song of Peace (Paul Robeson in Pickskills, NY)
by Valentin Polyakov, Igor Radoman, and Khaim-Shats, painting, 1950

14. All Flags Will Visit Us

All Flags Will Visit Us
by A. Deineka, painting, 1964

15. “70-year Anniversary of the African National Congress of South Africa”

"70-year Anniversary of the African National Congress of South Africa"
by A. Shmidstein, postal stamp, 1982

16. Mothers of the Worlds

Mothers of the Worlds
by A.N. Kuznetsov, mozaics in the Subway station “Prospekt Mira” in Moscow, 1970s

17. “The Great Lenin Showed Us The Way!”

"The Great Lenin Showed Us The Way!"
by V. Boldyrev, poster, 1969

18. “We Are Young Leninists”

"We Are Young Leninists"
by V. M. Konashevich, 1925

19. Under Capitalism… Under Socialism…

Under Capitalism... Under Socialism...
by V.B. Koretsky, poster, 1948

20. “We live in a free Africa!”

"We live in a free Africa!"
by Nina Vatolina, poster, 1964

21. “Capitalism is doomed!”

"Capitalism is doomed!"
by E. Artsrunyan, poster, 1966

22. Internatioanl Congress of Women

Internatioanl Congress of Women
by R.V. Suryaninov, poster, 1963

23. “Higher the banner of proletarian internationalism!”

"Higher the banner of proletarian internationalism!"
by O. Savostuk, poster, 1958

24. “International Day for the Protection of Children”

"International Day for the Protection of Children"
Postal stamp, 1958

25. “USSR is for the total disarmament!”

"USSR is for the total disarmament!"
by V.B. Koretsky, poster, 1959

26. “Damn you, Capitalism!”

"Damn you, Capitalism!"
by K. Ivanov, poster, 1975

27. Children of the Hero of the Congolese People, Patrice Lumumba — Fransua, Patrice and Julianna

Children of the Hero of the Congolese People, Patrice Lumumba -- Fransua, Patrice and Julianna
by N. Osenev, postcard, 1961

28. “Fighter for the freedom of South Africa, Nelson Mandela”

"Fighter for the freedom of South Africa, Nelson Mandela"
postal stamp, 1988

29. “Workers of all countries and the oppressed colonial peoples.”

"Workers of all countries and the oppressed colonial peoples."
by V.B. Koretsky, poster, 1932