Lebanon, Reform

The Death of Ideology and Beirut’s #YouStink Protests

Beirut #YouStink Protest, August 29, 2015. (Image stolen from stateofmind13.com)

Beirut #YouStink Protest, August 29, 2015. (Image stolen from stateofmind13.com)

Protesters from Lebanon’s #YouStink | طلعت_ريحتكم# movement staged a sit-in at the Ministry of the Environment today and vowed not to leave until Minister Mohammad Machnouk resigned from his post. The day ended with the police storming the building and forcing the protesters out.

I’m not in Beirut at the moment, so I’ve spent the past few days following the events on television, Twitter, Facebook, and the blogosphere. I’m struck by how readily the movement has ripped up the familiar categories of Lebanese political partisanship (March 14, March 8, Sunni, Shiite, Christian, FPM, LF, etc.) and replaced them with a call for knowledge-based solutions to universal problems. Perhaps the picture on the ground is different, but the reverberations online conjure up a great wave of disgust directed at the whole political stratum.

For example, when the FPM recently tried to smear one of the movement’s organizers, Assaad Thebian, as a cross-burning infidel, the move backfired badly (see Elie Fares and Emilie Hasrouty’s responses, in particular). Earlier today, when the M14 journalist Charles Jabbour wondered aloud why the Sunnis of Lebanon were not coming to a Sunni minister’s defense as he was “besieged” by protesters, his Facebook thread was trashed by disgusted readers.

Charles Jabbour

Lebanon may not be witnessing the birth of a post-sectarian civil state but something unprecedented is taking place. The language of protest chants, placards, tweets, and media interviews is unlike anything we’ve heard in the past ten years. The Arabic speakers might be interested in listening to some of the protest rap that is coming out of the movement. My favorite is this tune by El-Rass and MC Nasserdyn (of the famous Touffar crew). The lyrics are brilliant and shocking in their audacity, even by Beirut’s cacophonous standards.

And for a taste of some ironic neo-tarab, here’s another recent anthem (“Kellon ya3ni Kellon” = “All of ’em means all of ’em!”):

Over the past few days, almost every party leader has given a press conference pledging his support for the protesters while warning them not to be co-opted by one side or another. So far, these warnings have sounded more like cries from the wilderness and pleas for relevance. I worry, though, about how much longer the protesters can hold their ranks before the inevitable infiltrations begin.

To follow the events online, I recommend Mustapha’s excellent #YouStink News page. For the best account of how Lebanon got into this mess in the first place, there’s this report by the indispensable Matt Nash.

Discussion

563 thoughts on “The Death of Ideology and Beirut’s #YouStink Protests

  1. Abu ali Putin’s acrobatic air show over Syria is availing his bloodied tamed lion nothing in terms of avoiding further humiliations and defeats, and the tamed lion’s diapers are getting damper and damper by the day,

    http://aljazeera.net/news/arabic/2015/10/12/المعارضة-تعيد-السيطرة-على-قرى-بحماة-واللاذقية

    The initial drive to reclaim territory lost the last few months close to Lattakia, home town of the so-called lion, has backfired into another humiliating defeat and tremendous losses in life and machines of war to the tamed lion and his imported backers. In fact, the so-called drive of combined sectarian militias, otherwise appropriately called shabbiha thugs, resulted in further territorial losses bringing the rebels even closer to Qardaha.

    While the thug supreme currently feels he can finance abu ali Putin’s air show from the so-called nuclear deal dividends, experts are beginning to wonder how long that support will last considering the current state of Iranian economy, deeply in shambles, and how long before the oppressed and economically depressed Iranians will keep silent towards this irresponsible squandering of the country’s resources towards pursuing beyond border futile misadventures.

    In the meantime, the hezzies continue to celebrate the deaths of their dead in Syria, in the obedient service of the thug supremes,

    http://aljazeera.net/news/arabic/2015/10/12/حزب-الله-يشيع-قياديا-قتل-بسوريا

    Long live the Wise King, whose Wisdon is saving us and the entire humanity of the Trojan Horses and the tyranny of the taco wrapped heads.

    Posted by Mustap | October 12, 2015, 3:52 pm
  2. AP,

    Speaking of the US Constitution and its amendments as they pertain to individual freedoms and liberties, I don’t think you truly realize how grotesque these things end up after Corporate America is done screwing around with them!

    For example, I think part of the reason the US presidential election process is such a cacophonous mess is because when a billionaire funds a Super PAC to the tune of $100 million and starts blitzing the media with political advertisements, it’s considered that he’s merely exercising his right to free speech, which is protected under the first amendment of the US Constitution! Somehow I don’t think this is what the original framers intended, but what do I know?

    If you want to know more about this, then look into the quirky, crowd-funded presidential campaign of Harvard professor Lawrence Lessig, who’s running as a Democrat but will not show up in tomorrow’s CNN debates. From what I understand, his entire platform has to do with campaign finance reform.

    My favorite example of this reasoning as it pertains to the world of technology is when Internet Service Providers (ISPs) rail against Net Neutrality rules as a curtailment of their first amendment rights to free speech! They do this while also arguing that government should not be in the business of providing Internet access, because apparently 1) the dogmatic, conservative assumption is that government can’t do anything right, but also 2) government would be competition which would put pressure on capital returns and therefore reduce investment incentive:

    http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2015/10/net-neutrality-violates-the-first-amendment-according-to-one-isp/

    I’m pretty sure that all today’s Republican candidates are fiercely opposed to Net Neutrality and the first thing any one of them would do upon arrival in the White House would be to push for a change of leadership in the FCC!

    P.S.: Congratulations! I think I read a Politico headline today that Sheldon Adelson is poised to officially endorse Marco Rubio soon! I’m sure the fact that you also seem to like Rubio is just a coincidence! 😉

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 12, 2015, 10:05 pm
  3. It’s become obvious that united yanks of america is at ivotal crossroads. Mr. Obama is definitely the last great president the UY of A will ever have due to the obvious lack of worthy contenders, the choice for the Hollywood sybdrome brainwashed yank being between a circus of charlattans and a feeling entitled soap opera like mediocre, again thanks to the well known hollywood syndrome.

    It is estimated that yankees will need at least two generations shielded from the idol worship of the holywood temples before they can rise from the miserable pit they have been thrown into by the devices of their own making. It is a simple mass hypnosis phenomenon created by the temple of idols.

    In our opinion there’s only one solution out of this dilemma for the yank which is to re-elect the last available. great yank president, Mr. Obama, for as many terms as it may take in order to bridge this generational gap provided the temples are also brought down immediately on the heads of the idols. FDR’s case can be argued as a precedent and the dire situation of the lack of viable alternatives should provide a legal incentive.

    Posted by Mustap | October 13, 2015, 7:42 am
  4. Samer,

    The label “Corporate America” is supposed to be negative, but to me, Corporate America is a positive. I am pro-business.

    As far as our election process, you are preaching to the choir! It is awful. It is too long and too expensive. I don’t know what the answer is. Polling? And then the government providing equal time and money? I don’t know.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | October 13, 2015, 12:36 pm
  5. AP,

    For the record, I am pro-business as well! I believe people should strive and they should work! It’s good for them in every way, and I don’t see how anyone could have a problem with that!

    However, I am neutral on both “Corporate America” and “Government”. Granted, I’m not a very deep thinker on these matters, but I figure there are roles to be played by both, in ways that provide the necessary “checks and balances”!

    I sympathize with conservatives who complain about bloated, inefficient, ineffective, corrupt government rife with freeloaders, obstructionists and profiteers!

    However, I think it’s dangerous to throw one’s lot fully with [big] corporations, especially on libertarian grounds, since corporations do their share of exploitation and I don’t think are better on individual liberty overall than reasonably functioning government!

    Imagine yourself being a Chinese worker at a Foxconn factory earning a pittance and working arduous hours in hellish conditions to assemble iPhones for other people! Also imagine yourself being an American worker who just got laid off a few hours ago without prior notice and is now being escorted via an armed security detail off the corporate premises! And let’s then discuss the potential pitfalls of having an over-zealously “pro-business” attitude! As with most things, the devil is in the details, and it’s more about the “how” than the “what”…

    I come across the phrase “public-private partnerships” a lot! I’m not sure I know what it means, but it sounds nice! 🙂

    P.S.: I hope you recognize the nuances between referring to “Corporate America” in particular and to “business” in general! “Corporate America” generally refers to the largest businesses in the country, the S&P500 if you will! These guys don’t even employ that many people. In contrast, I have no qualms with small businesses at all! I ADORE the small business!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 13, 2015, 1:46 pm
  6. Samer,

    I understand your POV. I tend not to be in the “middle” between Business and Government. I definitely favor business. Businesses have to make a profit; the government loses money in everything they touch, be it Amtrak, USPS, Roads and Highways, etc.

    Also imagine yourself being an American worker who just got laid off a few hours ago without prior notice and is now being escorted via an armed security detail off the corporate premises!

    Really Samer?

    I’ve been laid off a few time, exactly how you described. So what? I like to compare work to that of professional sports players. They get waived, contracts expire, contracts get terminated and player get hurt all the time. Either another team picks the player up, or they retire or go into another type of business. The only place I heard of where workers were termed “permanent” was when I was working in Israel! The socialist government there makes it difficult for an employer to lay off a worker. Thus, inefficiency creeps in and governments have to buy failing businesses. Bad idea.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | October 13, 2015, 3:44 pm
  7. ???? Indeed

    Posted by Vulcan | October 13, 2015, 5:38 pm
  8. Initial reports trickling out from the battlefields of the Hama region indicate that Assad thugs, or as referred to in common jargon as shabbiha, have been massacred beyond description in their drive to invade under the air cover of their Russian overloads. Number of killed exceeds 800 so far. More killings of high level thug supremes from Iran as wll as hezzy Trojans were also reported. Hama hospitals were flooded with rotting corpses during the last few days. Funerals in Lattakia and surrounding villages are normal occurences 24/7. While many towns in Lebanon continue to celebrate the absolute obedience and submission to the will of the supreme thug of Qom by dutifully burrying their dead.

    Rebels advanced on all fronts in Hama, and Lattakia is now within firing range. Russian air base is within mortar fire and missile attacks became a distinct possibility. Rebel morale skyrocketed especially after Rusky invaders showed up on the scene.

    Obviously, the Ruskies are doing zilch to support their bogus claims of attacking the entity known as ISIS. Instead, it’s clear they’re attacking the rebels that have nothing to do with this entity and have everything to do with fighting the bloodied tamed lion.

    Posted by Mustap | October 13, 2015, 8:00 pm
  9. Stop the War.. All we are saying, is give peace a chance.

    Posted by Vulcan | October 13, 2015, 8:10 pm
  10. Fuck all the waring factions. There is no military solution in the Middle East.

    Posted by Vulcan | October 13, 2015, 8:12 pm
  11. How could it be possible to even consider making peace with a war criminal responsible for killing more than quarter million innocents, destroying entire cities with barrel bombs, firing indiscriminately dumb scud missiles on schools and hospitals, gassing women, children and the elderly, maintaining the most abhorrent draconian prisons in history, and the list goes on and on?

    Are you out of your mind?

    Posted by Mustap | October 13, 2015, 11:58 pm
  12. I am, but what bothers me the most is the fact that he and his dad were BFF with your Al Sauds, now that they have “found out” he is evil, why don’t they just bomb his bedroom with their homemade fighter jets? Why flood Syria with Al Qaeda and ISIS? How’s that going for the Syrian people? And now Saud is going to defeat Russia and Iran combined ?

    “The sucking sound you hear is the withdrawal of the USS Theodore Roosevelt – the last aircraft carrier we had in the region. It is play time for the Russian/Iranian alliance. President Obama won’t lift a finger for the Saudi royal family.”

    I hope I’m wrong, but the region is in for a good 50 years of what we are seeing, because of the so called “leaders of the Arab Muslims”. they should make it mandatory for Arabs to watch the US Presidential debates, maybe they will learn something.

    Posted by Vulcan | October 14, 2015, 12:59 am
  13. Ok. So you’re out of your mind as you said. We kind of suspect it long ago.

    Now obviously with your mindless state you don’t qualify to make rational commentary especially when it come to the most Wise Kingdom and its most Wise King.

    So, who’s asking the US to lift a finger? it looks like it’s only mindless you. Again, it follows since you’re out of your mind, you don’t know what you’re talking about.

    On the other hand, the Arabs, thankfully unlike you, do have their their minds and therefore have no need to watch the sillines of the mass hypnosis of the circus of yankee fools. But watch on and entertain yourself.

    Posted by Mustap | October 14, 2015, 2:31 am
  14. …why don’t they just bomb his bedroom with their homemade fighter jets?

    Good question.

    Anyway, nice to see the Zios and the Gulf states are cooperating…

    http://www.foxnews.com/world/2015/10/14/gulf-states-in-talks-to-buy-israeli-anti-missile-system-for-defense-against/?intcmp=hpbt3

    Posted by Akbar Palace | October 14, 2015, 8:06 am
  15. Zios are known to always fabricate and propagate stories in Zio sympathetic media outlets.

    Hehehehe……

    Wise King never buys zilch from Zios …. Not even if offered for free.

    O’ correction …… not even if Zios offer to pay on top of offering it for free.

    Posted by Mustap | October 14, 2015, 11:01 am
  16. AP,

    With all due respect, as a card-carrying Republican you come across as a bit doped up on ideology and not well versed on the analytics at all, which results in you seeming incoherent and quite divorced from reality!

    1) Fine, you’re free to advocate the efficient enterprise, but it’s not fair for it to be completely at the expense of the worker. The fire-at-will scenario you describe buttresses my earlier assertion that corporations are no better on liberty than reasonably functioning government. You have to concede that you advocate an employment scenario where the worker has no rights, and without rights he has no liberty, so please spare me your patronizing remarks about freedom of speech and freedom to own guns when for the duration of the workday, you basically expect workers to kneel to their employers and cater to their every whim!

    2) Remember that enterprise efficiency is not pursued for efficiency’s sake, but for the benefit of the business owner! Now granted, in the old days, the owner expected large returns because he was taking large risks. But the modern economic system has done a great job reducing the operational risk of the business owner, ESPECIALLY the large business owner! Economic cycles, depressions, recessions and such are largely a thing of the past, thanks to GOVERNMENT! You seem to be in complete denial of this, and therefore do not acknowledge the fact that you are advocating a system where there is just enough government to spare the business owner but not enough to spare the enterprise worker!

    3) Your “professional sports players” analogy is impressive in just how well it outlines the weaknesses of your argument. There are many diverse labor markets out there, and the shallowest I can think of is professional sports players. Such a market will never be large enough to provide enough employment for an entire nation of workers. It’s also quite brutal, in the sense that it weeds out most prospects before they even get to participate, and even the lucky few who do burn out quickly and retire early! This may be desirable in the adversarial world of sports, but what about endeavors that are, dare I say it, more communal? What about teachers, babysitters, air traffic controllers, bus drivers, caregivers? When job experience is valuable, a relaxed environment is preferred and loyalty is distinguishing, does it make sense to churn through your workers so cavalierly by making them feel so cheap and so unessential to the success of your arguably selfish enterprise?

    4) Remember that when a reasonably functional government runs operations at losses, very often it does so knowingly and deliberately to provide a necessary subsidy, not because it’s clueless as to how to run an enterprise. The example I always think about is farming. In Europe, when a farmer’s crop fails due to either flood or drought, he doesn’t stress about it because the EU provides the necessary subsidies. In India, by contrast, when a farmer’s crop fails due to either flood or drought, he can’t pay back the loans he owes on the seeds, and he throws himself down a well, committing suicide and leaving his wife a widow and his children orphans! Now you tell me, if you were to be a farmer, would you prefer to do it in India or in Europe?

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 14, 2015, 12:31 pm
  17. You have to concede that you advocate an employment scenario where the worker has no rights, and without rights he has no liberty, so please spare me…

    Samer,

    I never advocated working w/o “rights”. Please don’t put words in my mouth. Businesses should have a right to hire and fire/lay-off at “will”. And they do, and they have, no matter who the politician du jour was in power in any of the 50 states.

    Actually you were the one crying about laying off workers w/o cause…. and I think employers should be allowed to, and they already do….legally.

    I won’t bother responding further. No time or inclination.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | October 14, 2015, 1:36 pm
  18. AP,

    I actually agree with you about employers having the right to “fire at will”, yes whatever that means and let’s not get into it right now!

    The reason I didn’t respond to you yesterday was because I implicitly recognized that I cited an extremely problematic firing scenario that I didn’t even agree with myself! Sure, it stings to be fired on the spot and be escorted via armed guard off the premises. But throw in some severance pay, for however long, and it becomes perfectly acceptable!

    I lapsed. I was going for drama by citing that example in haste! And you caught me on substance! You win! I concede this to you entirely!

    So let me perhaps try to be clearer about where I stand on this issue and what I was going for:

    There is a social problem in this country when there are far fewer employers than there are employees, and when the employer class owns a vastly disproportionate share of the country’s wealth, and when it can be argued that the entire economic system is biased for the employer class’s benefit (although yes, I concede that even in this environment, business conditions are cut-throat and companies go out of business all the time).

    This social problem is out there in plain sight, and is well documented, and it has its disturbing effects, like a large domestic prison population or emergent “neo-segregationist” urban dynamics or whatever!

    Now according to my simple, feeble mind, I think that this is a problem that government should perhaps address, either by providing unemployment benefits (yes, however problematic that might be as a perverse incentive) or by providing outright employment (yes, however problematic that might be in encouraging government bloat and a debilitating, non-meritocratic, political environment)!

    The reason I didn’t immediately cite the need for government intervention earlier is because the Republicans have trained us all not to even think of this “wealth redistribution” kind of thing! They howl in protest at the mere suggestion of it!

    But refraining from citing the need for government does ensure that this problem is left open-ended and unaddressed! That’s how I lapsed into citing a firing scenario for drama instead of trying to be more substantive! I was conceding to Republicans, all the while implicitly recognizing that for all their protestations, they don’t have any robust, non-governmental solutions to these problems short of basically leaving people to their fate, ignoring them as a political constituency (peddling nonsense about government stifling opportunity doesn’t count as real initiative) and praying for the best against all the odds!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 14, 2015, 2:09 pm
  19. Before worrying about imaginary so-called cyclones brewing over Saudi Arabia, may be you should worry about Yankee land becoming the dumbing ground of every one on this planet,

    http://money.cnn.com/2015/10/14/news/economy/us-treasury-debt-selloff-2015/index.html?iid=hp-stack-dom

    Again, hehehehehehe……..

    Posted by Mustap | October 14, 2015, 2:51 pm
  20. Now, this comment is for all ye sinners to reflect on your sins, to ponder upon your crooked ways and to repent before the hour comes.

    An archeological team led by Trinity SW U of NM, Steven Collins, have been exploring for 10 years in Jordan. They discovered a ruined town now thought to be the city where Lot lived few thousand years ago. They confirmed through scientific investigations that life in that city ceased to exist abruptly as if a disaster struck. They further confirmed that the destruction brought upon the cursed city completely agrees with the Quranic story describing the event, and they disprived the description of the Bible claiming it was destroyed by fire and sulfur.

    Niw it looks like as if the mountain has indeed come to Mohammed right in front of our scientific eyes.

    Posted by Mustap | October 15, 2015, 7:03 am
  21. I am starting to realize the brilliant, twisted genius, whether deliberate or not, of Donald Trump running as a Republican in this election!

    Putting his ridiculous, “carnival barker” rhetoric aside, he’s really done three great things in the past few months:

    Firstly, and most importantly, he’s exposed the fraudulent conceit that the average Republican voter even understands, let alone endorses, the preachy, ideological, constitutional absolutism of “Tea Party” types like Rand Paul and especially Ted Cruz (who is now resorting to desperate, ludicrous, anti-Democrat hyperbole). Seasoned lawyers (in Cruz’s case) talking about this stuff are like circuit designers who talk about Extreme Ultra Violent Lithography and Deep Submicron Quantum Tunneling Effects! Nobody other than them and their clique gets it!

    Secondly, he’s adversely impacted the ability of Super-PAC facilities to endorse more mainstream candidates like Bush or Rubio! This actually makes a perverse and even beautiful kind of sense! If eccentric billionaires have an outsized ability to influence American politics, wouldn’t it be far more honest for them to spare us the indirection and just run for office instead?

    Thirdly, by being the “reality TV star” (or however Obama described him), he’s recruited the media to his corner, by delivering viewer ratings! I mean, sure no-one is talking about the “substantive” issues, but then again, there are no contrived, political “attack ads” either! Maybe Donald Trump, again whether knowingly or not, is trying to bury television as an ineffectively simplistic medium to discuss complex politics in America! I mean, the man has a long experience being on television, so surely he knows what the medium, especially when corporate-owned, can and cannot do!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 15, 2015, 3:31 pm
  22. Speaking of attack ads, which everyone generally criticizes as being too negative and hostile, imagine this scenario:

    Donald Trump wins the Republican nomination and runs against say Hillary Clinton in the general election! His opponents try to damage him by collating every idiotic thing he’s ever said or done into a 30 second TV slot and then sending it to broadcasters to run around the clock!

    What would such an attack ad campaign look like? It’d be completely absurd, an exercise in hilarity that the human brain would have no option but to discard after a good chuckle! If the news media picks up any attack ad and runs with it as a “meta” story, they’d look completely ridiculous!

    And that’s how Donald Trump would have exposed the flaws in the entire system (as well as perhaps made an existential point about how nobody is ever the same on the campaign trail as they might be in office)! But would he have won the game? At that point, it’d be a crapshoot, either him or Hillary! And if you believe what people say about Trump, that he’s not a true conservative, it wouldn’t really matter to him (or any like-minded Republican) either way!

    And so there’s a good chance we’d maintain the status quo going into the next US presidency, where the Democrats have the White House but the Republicans have the Senate. The Dems and Repubs will go back to bickering with each other, the Republicans will pride themselves on being the opposition ‘Party of No’, the Tea Partiers will retreat to the fringes where they belong and never again have the opportunity to shut down the government, and Trump will go back to what he was doing before he ever ran for president!

    The above is so simple a narrative to figure out, especially in hindsight, that if it really does play out like this between now and Election Night, the most important question to ask in response would be, “Why didn’t the American voter see this coming, and thwart it?” My response to such a question would be, “The American voter is overwhelmed with information, no longer knows instinctively what the right thing to do is, and is as confused and wary of change as anyone else would be under the circumstances!”

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 15, 2015, 6:40 pm
  23. Small correction: In the second to last paragraph above, I wrote “the Republicans have the Senate” when I should have written “the Republicans have the Congress” (ie. the Republicans have both the Senate and the House of Representatives)!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 15, 2015, 7:08 pm
  24. Did you guys ever watch that show “Boston Legal” with William Shatner in the starring role as the eccentric, ridiculous, brilliant-in-a-previous-life, aging lawyer with mild cognitive impairment? If not, put it on your Netflix queue because it’s not only hilarious but also wicked-smart!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 15, 2015, 7:16 pm
  25. Joo tolkin to me meng?! Said Señor Sossa, when asked about the truth behind reports that Gen. Frias, head of Cuba’s Armed Forces, recently visited Syria to lead a group of Cuban military personnel joining forces with Russia in their support of Assad.

    Posted by Vulcan | October 16, 2015, 12:15 am
  26. The Wise Kingdom announced a deal is reached with US Lockheed Martin to buy some 600 advanced Patriot Pac-3 missiles for its air defense against ballistic misdiles and advanced aircraft. The deal is worth billions of dollars.

    The Wise Kingdom also announced another deal with France worth tens of billions of dollars.

    This proves once again that the Wise Kingdom never buys zilch from Zios. All stories propagated by Zio sympathetic media outlets such as the one posted earlier by Zion resident here are of course fabrications as we’ve come to learn that Zios are keen and even desperate on projecting the false image that they have supporters in the Wise Kingdom or among Wise Kingdom Associates. We need to be careful when reading such fabrications

    Posted by Mustap | October 16, 2015, 6:04 am
  27. Now the only thing the wise camel jockeys have to do is TRY to learn what they bought and how to operate them!
    Score another one for the wise king’s men. Wise to burn the money instead of helping your brother/sister Muslims dying in Syria and elsewhere.

    Posted by Danny | October 16, 2015, 7:23 am
  28. Wise Kingdom’s generosity to the Syrians cannot be called into question. It’s a proven fact.

    Posted by Mustap | October 16, 2015, 9:01 am
  29. While the Wise Kingdom provided billions of dollars in aid to Syrian refugees, opened its doors to millions of Syrians who are given the same benefits as born Saudis, and while the rest of the world looked the other way while hundreds of thousands of innocent Syrians are massacred at the hands of a criminal butcher, and while the rest of the world even denied the innocent victims the most basic right of defending themselves by denying them essential weapons under the scandalous excuse of fear of such weapons falling to the hands of so-called terrorists, thus succumbing to the exact same scenario the criminal butcher hoped to achieve, the Wise Kingdom has stepped up its support to the Syrians both in military and financial aid.

    The recent successes against the shabbiha thugs of the criminal butcher in and around Hama and near Lattakia can only be attributed to the massive military aid the Wise Kingdom is supplying to the rebels. More than 100 tanks and armoured vehicles for the butcher were destroyed along with shabihhas inside in recent battles using Wise Kingdom supplied TOW missiles. More than 20,000 TOWs currently in Wise Kingdom’s arsenal are earmarked for delivery to the battlefield. The Wise Kingdom is also working diligently to provide the rebels with shoulder-fired portable anti aircraft missiles in order to provide the innocent Syrians with protection against the invading Russian air force. The decision has been made at the highest level in the Wise Kingdom to do all it takes to provide these missiles to the rebels regardless of so-called powers-to-be reservations about supplying these weapons. The rebels have been told recently they have unlimited credit account open for their exclusive use.

    Russia, butcher and his backers will NOT have their say in Syria. Bucher failed when he was alone two years ago. He failed with Iran and hezie’s help recently. And he will fail with Russia, Iran and hezie’s help combined again. There’ll be no room for butcher or his backers in Syria.

    Posted by Mustap | October 16, 2015, 11:55 am
  30. Joo tolkin to me meng?!

    Reminded me of Rod Steiger’s role in The Specialist…

    https://www.google.com/#q=Rod+Steiger+Joe+Leon

    Posted by Akbar Palace | October 16, 2015, 1:18 pm
  31. Guys, this is a bit embarrassing but I’m going to do it anyway. Please bear with me!

    Yesterday, in one of my comments, in an attempt to highlight the obscure nature of highly technical, specialist jargon, I apparently typed the admittedly off-topic phrase “Extreme Ultra Violent”! Never mind that this phrase sounds disturbing, it’s also quite wrong!

    What I meant to write was “Extreme Ultra Violet”. Yes I realize that “Extreme Ultraviolet” would have been even better, but I try to remain faithful to the “EUV” acronym!

    Now here’s the thing: This “typo” is not really my fault! This blog’s comment entry form has a spellchecker that is very aggressive, quite presumptuous and very often wrong. I’ve learned over time to be diligent about correcting its mistakes, not the other way around, but despite my best efforts, the occasional “typo” (where one correctly spelled but unintended word is substituted for another correctly spelled but intended one) still makes it to publication!

    Having said that, never mind! It’s no big deal! Carry on, everyone! 🙂

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 16, 2015, 2:20 pm
  32. And the story is awesome

    Posted by Vulcan | October 16, 2015, 8:03 pm
  33. I tend to agree with Trump on one thing and onr thing only, since on anything else he seems to be bullshitting, promising the moon, but as every one knows America is finished for at least few generations, until it gets its act together with this Hollywood syndrome, so in effect Trump or no Trump America is kaput.

    Anyway, there’s no denying that GWB was the most incompetent president in the history of the US of A. In addition to being responsible for the mess that is today’s Iraq, there’s no denying 911 took place during his term.

    Posted by Mustap | October 18, 2015, 3:24 am
  34. While Russian invaders of Syria continue to commit murders killing innocents, the Syrian Rebels are succeeding in killing the invaders. Three such invaders were killed today in addition to five Iranian thugs, several hezies and scores of shabbihas.

    Criminal butcher has yet to succeed in any attempt to reclaim territory recently lost to rebels. When butcher fail she resorts to scorched earth policy which reflects his desperation as well as his true character as a criminal supreme.

    The Wise King continues with his full support to Syrians both militarily and financially.

    Posted by Mustap | October 20, 2015, 3:28 pm
  35. Canada changes to the better.

    Not knowing exactly what this war against this ISIS entity is all about, the new Canadian government declared it’ll cease participation in it.

    At least there’s someone in Canada who can tell the US to get lost.

    Posted by Mustap | October 21, 2015, 6:46 am
  36. Assad and Putin regain friendship. Asif and Mudasir no longer world’s most compelling Bromance.

    Assad Makes Unannounced Trip to Moscow to Discuss Syria With Putin.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/22/world/middleeast/assad-putin-syria-russia.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0

    Posted by Vulcan | October 21, 2015, 11:37 am
  37. All we had to do was drop that empty suit to make sure no one would use it as an excuse.

    But nooooo…

    Posted by Akbar Palace | October 21, 2015, 12:10 pm
  38. Hey AP,

    It’s too bad you don’t watch PBS, because I reckon you’re missing out on the absolutely fantastic travel/food show that is now airing called “I’ll have what Phil’s having”!

    It’s hosted by a guy named Phil Rosenthal, who apparently was the writer/creator of that TV sitcom “Everybody Loves Raymond”. Anyway, the show’s currently like 4 episodes in (Tokyo, Venice, Paris, Hong Kong), and it’s absolutely terrific. Phil’s Jewish background, family, friends and customs frequently make cameo appearances throughout!

    You might be able to stream episodes via the PBS website. I highly recommend them! Very classy stuff…

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 21, 2015, 3:55 pm
  39. Putin once again sought the Wise council of the Wise King by making a phone call.

    After waiting patiently for the Wise Royal to grant him audience, Putin finally succeeded in hearing the Wisfom he was seeking. Once again Putin was told he must get out from Syria and abandon his criminal activities on behalf of a known criminal butcher. The alternative will be more dead Russians and an end for Russia similar to USSR’s end in Afghanistan.

    Posted by Mustap | October 22, 2015, 9:22 am
  40. Putin’s about face of proposing butcher Assad to remain in power for 18 months is clearly unacceptable to anyone concerned with the Syrian issue. Wise Kingdom is seeking speedy ousting of the butcher. The Syrians definitely would want a say in his fate, example putting him on trial for crimes against humanity resulting in execution. So, even if he leaves within an acceptable time frame the question of accountability will arise.

    It looks like Putin realized his errors and is seeking a way out for himself and for Russia after performing an acrobatic show designed exclusively to satisfy his ego. On the other hand butcher is scrambling to find another last resort saviour in Iran where he is visiting to explain his Putin dilemma to the thug supreme.

    Posted by Mustap | October 23, 2015, 7:23 am
  41. So according to Darthvedow it’s all America’s fault.. pshshshsh.. Tell me something new!

    Posted by Vulcan | October 23, 2015, 5:16 pm
  42. Iranian and shabbiha thugs continue to get slaughtered in droves in Syria as the Syrian rebels continue to cleanse Syria of Trojan Horses.

    Russians continue their massacre of innocent Syrian civilians without achieving any tangible results in the battlefield.

    Russia has been sucked into the quagmire. Dire consequences are in store for Putin. No wonder Lavrov comes up with bizzare proposals every second day. The end of Russia is near.

    Hezzistan continues to induce scorn and ridicule everytime its wrapped supreme opens his mouth.

    Posted by Mustap | October 24, 2015, 1:59 pm
  43. We must not forget to thank the Wise King for making Russia’s invasion of Syria a disastrous failure. Just as the predecessor Wise King destroyed the USSR in Afghanistan through unwavering support for Afghan rebels, so is the current Wise King ensuring the Wise legacy endures in Syria.

    Both Russia and Iran will be destroyed.

    Posted by Mustap | October 24, 2015, 4:29 pm
  44. Yay لبنان الأخضر

    Posted by Vulcan | October 26, 2015, 2:04 am
  45. Tony Blair, who was something like a mentor to idiot GWB before and after invading Iraq, now feels sorry for doing so and for fighting Saddam. Blair admits responsibility for the current mess in Iraq.

    Shouldn’t criminal charges be brought against Blair, Bush and the other incompetents who created this mess and cost the citizens of both countries trillions of wasted dollars?

    Posted by Mustap | October 26, 2015, 12:24 pm
  46. Why Jews (and Americans) should stop giving to publicly funded “news” sources like NPR…

    http://www.camera.org/index.asp?x_context=2&x_outlet=35&x_article=3144

    Like I said, no one listens to me…

    Posted by Akbar Palace | October 26, 2015, 2:24 pm
  47. Yeah, I’ll admit that when I saw the “Beirut river of garbage” video yesterday, I flew into a bit of a rage! The worst part of it was hearing the weird affect on the voice of the woman providing the commentary. She started by appropriately saying “Ya 3aib elshoom” (rough translation: “What a shame!”), and she’d have been completely forgiven for being livid with anger, but then, in perhaps a display of that famed, Middle Eastern “resilience” we always patronizingly hear about (which frankly reeks of desperation), she tried to remain cheerful and started to crack some jokes and even laugh towards the end of the clip! I can only imagine how long that poor soul has been consoling herself with that random, depressing, horsesh*t line one always hears when lamenting the region’s complicated and tragic misfortunes: “The situation is so ridiculous there’s no other way to react to it but with satire!”

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 26, 2015, 3:13 pm
  48. AP,

    You alluded to this in the “stop giving” and “publicly funded” phrases of your statement but as a devoted consumer of public broadcasting, I feel I need to explain a bit about NPR’s finances to people who might not know what you’re talking about.

    NPR (radio) and PBS (television) get a certain portion of their funding from grassroots subscriber memberships (which is why they spend a lot of time doing fundraising telethons and the like). They are also the beneficiaries of a lot of philanthropic activity, both individual and corporate. And yes, they get government funding too. That government funding doesn’t come in the form of direct governmental involvement, but rather a subsidy (or a “match” if you will of private donations) to the public broadcasting corporation. This government funding amounts to a pittance.

    A subjective opinion of course, but I think NPR and PBS, while far from perfect, are still perfectly entitled to the freedom of speech that other media organizations enjoy, and provide diverse, valuable programming and perspectives that are not adequately addressed by more typical, profit-motivated, corporate broadcasters! FM radio in particular outside of NPR is a blighted desert landscape in America, where even if one has the good judgement to shun angry Talk Radio, the other channels simply have morning DJ’s invite psychics and pranksters to pump pure, sonic garbage over the air instead!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 26, 2015, 4:14 pm
  49. Samer,

    The issue isn’t freedom of speech. This issue is the government funding a (preferred) news source. The US government should never fund a media source* just like it should never fund a religious organization.

    According to this article the funding is not quite 10% of the budget.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/should-npr-lose-its-federal-funding/

    *except, perhaps the Voice of America as a way for the US government to provide a face to foreigners across the world.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | October 26, 2015, 4:29 pm
  50. We’ve always maintained that the creation of the cesspool by the French 100 years ago was a grave historical error.

    History is now correcting its course by exposing the cesspoolean nature of the French schemes.

    Posted by Mustap | October 26, 2015, 6:38 pm
  51. AP,

    You put me in a tight spot ideologically because while I completely agree with you that the government should not fund religious organizations, I struggle to compare something like NPR with something like the Catholic Church, for example. So instead, I want to discuss the practicalities:

    1) I don’t keep up with annual Federal budgets, but I reckon they run somewhere in excess of $3 trillion a year. The article you provided noted that in 2011 the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) was allocated about $500 million. Of that, around $400 million went to television (PBS) and $100 million went to radio (NPR). Let’s agree that this, especially as it pertains to NPR, qualifies as a pittance (as I asserted previously)!

    2) There is a distinct difference between PBS and NPR. While you can argue that there are choices other than PBS in television, you can’t argue the same about NPR in radio (let’s ignore the traditional Internet browsing experience for now). Even the case against PBS is a bit shaky, because if you want to cite something like CNN as a choice other than PBS, you have to admit that CNN is delivered over cable and not over the air. (Yes, “basic” channels like ABC or NBC are delivered over the air!)

    3) NPR is radio, and as I mentioned previously, the radio landscape in the US is dismal. Unless you are a satellite radio subscriber, you can’t get something like CNN over radio! So the Republican “pro-choice” argument against NPR in radio is weak! (Of course, traditional radio only matters for drivers in their vehicles, a use case which itself is rapidly evolving as more and more cars are getting cellular Internet access either independently or through an on-board smartphone.)

    4) The Republican “give the market what it wants” argument against NPR is also weak, since the article noted that the government only provides around 10% of NPR’s budget. The other 90% of NPR’s budget is being served by subscribing listeners who are getting exactly what they want!

    5) As I’ve mentioned previously on this blog, one of the great things about NPR and PBS in the US is that they syndicate a lot of BBC programming. NPR also by the way syndicates some very interesting Canadian programming! This is very valuable in its diversity and worldliness whether one believes in a “special relationship” between the US and the UK/Canada or not!

    6) I used to fret a lot about how bad radio is in the US! But I don’t anymore. Because I recognize that before long car radios will be pumping Internet content through cellular data plans. Let’s assume that NPR eventually gets defunded and goes away! I will speculate with relatively high confidence that most existing NPR listeners will switch to something like the BBC instead (which is already provided over satellite radio, for example)! So how would you feel as a Republican if American listeners had a choice between say, the BBC, the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting) or even Russia Today (which the last I checked was available on dedicated channels in US hotel room televisions), but nothing, absolutely nothing, comparable from their own country which is more populous than the UK, Canada and Russia combined? This is a serious flaw in the Republican argument, since to remain consistent with its anti-NPR, “liberal bias” logic, the Republican argument would have to be even more hostile to the “non-US bias” of all international broadcasters whether they’re [foreign] government subsidized or not!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | October 26, 2015, 6:54 pm
  52. We confirm that the Wise Kingdom has delivered through friendly intermediaries anti aircraft missiles to rebels in Northern Syria.

    OTOH, Putin now has more problems on his hands besides his failed Syrian fiasco. His soldiers in Syria are choosing to commit suicide instead of joining the war.

    Posted by Mustap | October 27, 2015, 8:12 pm
  53. Good luck Putin. I hope he can defeat Daesh

    Posted by Vulcan | October 27, 2015, 9:27 pm
  54. Any legitimate Syrian opposition should fight Daesh first.

    Posted by Vulcan | October 27, 2015, 9:29 pm
  55. Any opposition fighting Assad, his backers and Putin is THE legitimate opposition.

    Assad is evil incarnate.

    Posted by Mustap | October 27, 2015, 10:42 pm
  56. Most incomprehensible is when someone justifies support for butcher Assad or his criminal backers in the name of opposing a so-called entity of ISIS.

    It proves utter intellectual bankruptcy. But such is the case of many ME expats, whose motives are often suspicious.

    Having said that, we must never forget to express praise the Wise King who keeps the hopes and aspirations of the people alive. For the Wise King and Mr. Obama have reaffirmed support for the people of Syria in their most recent conversation by phone. Mr. Obama too can now be considered as a member of the Wise club, an advantage the US can enjoy for a very limited period of about 15 months,

    Posted by Mustap | October 28, 2015, 7:32 pm
  57. عّم تتحلحل في بيروت يحلحل رقابهن suddenly they found a solution, a sectarian division of dumpsters, eh why not, surrender to decentralization, it’s not bad. Khalsoon fala2to sama rabna

    Posted by Vulcan | October 29, 2015, 8:48 pm
  58. خلّصونا

    Posted by Vulcan | October 29, 2015, 8:49 pm
  59. Walla 3ala mahlkon, let’s wait for the Vienna talks.

    Posted by Vulcan | October 29, 2015, 8:54 pm
  60. I found the solution, somethingsgottagive, the only solution is peace between Israel and Iran, the Arabs will immediately all have to agree. Problem solved. Thank you thank you very much

    Posted by Vulcan | October 31, 2015, 1:55 am
  61. It can also work if the Arabs agree faster and make peace with Israel first.

    Posted by Vulcan | October 31, 2015, 2:11 am
  62. If none makes peace, they shall both keep showing the world who loves Palestine more.. و من الحب ما قتل
    Ah weella .. Qifa nabki indeed.

    Posted by Vulcan | October 31, 2015, 2:17 am
  63. Putin pays for his crimes in tge Sinai desert against Malaysian airliner shot down by him over Ukraine and against his crimes in Syria. 224 Ruskies perished in the Sinai desert ad a result of Putin’s arrogance and misadventures.

    Putin is alone very sad today.

    Posted by Mustap | October 31, 2015, 10:18 am
  64. Sounds about right. Terrorize and kill thousands of people, then blame someone else for your depraved act of downing a passenger plane or chopping the heads off innocent people.

    Looking forward to a democratically led Middle East living in peace, which, no doubt, will happen long after I’m gone.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | October 31, 2015, 12:23 pm
  65. Indications point out to an expected resounding victory for the AKP in today’s Turkey elections.

    We’d like to congratulate the Turkish people on the wise choice they seem to be making, and we wish Mr. Erdogan and Mr. Uglo a successful majority government.

    Posted by Mustap | November 1, 2015, 12:23 pm
  66. To the animal gloating at the tragic death of innocent people in the plane crash and in the case of it being shot down, glorifying the act and further showing how sick and full of hatred you are. Fuck your Islamic ideology. Piss off.

    Posted by Vulcan | November 1, 2015, 2:01 pm
  67. It’s official. Erdogan is the winner by a landslide. Congratulations to Turkey.

    Buzz off Vulcan and stop gloating when Putin kills Syrians and supports butcher Ass-ad. He did kill the Malaysians too over Ukraine. Eye for an eye and he who initiated killing is the aggressor. Divine justice cannot be more just. Russians must rise against Putin in order to save their lives from his evil misdeeds.

    Posted by Mustap | November 1, 2015, 2:47 pm
  68. You are a sick human being influenced by extremism. I never gloat at the suffering of anyone or support Putin or Assad crimes. You are equal to the criminals killing the Syrian people. Divine justice in your sick barbaric ideology. Was the recent stampede and the crane collapse in Mecca on 911 divine justice? كول خرا وروح انطم، واحد غبي

    Posted by Vulcan | November 1, 2015, 5:13 pm
  69. It’s understable that you’re upset because Erdogan won. It’s obvious now who’s eating that which comes out of your mouth. It looks like you’re full of it.

    Heheheheheh….,,,,,,,,

    Of course, you were gloating and encouraging Putin to kill Syrians.

    Posted by Mustap | November 1, 2015, 5:24 pm
  70. Learned an intriguing detail about that Russian airplane crash in the Sinai today. The Airbus aircraft apparently suffered a damaging tail strike incident during landing at Cairo airport while it was owned and operated by Lebanon-based Middle East Airlines in 2001.

    Fast forward to 2012 when an Irish entity leased the aircraft to the Russians and was responsible for its certification checks, but as of yet we still don’t know where and how the aircraft was repaired after that incident in 2001.

    I don’t know how these things are handled but I would assume that if the aircraft was debilitated in Cairo, it would have had to be repaired on site there, no? Otherwise, how could it take off to any other site of repair? Surely disassembling it and transporting it in pieces would be prohibitively expensive?

    Which begs the question: Can the Egyptians be trusted with something like this? It would be extremely ironic if the aircraft was repaired in Egypt only to crash there more than a decade later.

    Also worth pondering is how rigorous and frequent any subsequent certification checks on the aircraft were. Is knowledge of previous damage and repairs factored into the process to make it more thorough in certain places? Finally, how is legal liability assessed in a situation like this? How are negligence or culpability determined?

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/10/31/did-accident-from-14-years-ago-doom-russian-plane-over-egypt.html

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 2, 2015, 3:41 pm
  71. Yes, that Daily Beast article I posted earlier stated that the aircraft was owned by the Russians but this more recent and more detailed BBC article states differently that the aircraft was leased by the Irish to the Russians. Both articles agree that the aircraft was registered in Ireland, but neither details where the repairs following the tail strike incident of 2001 in Cairo took place, by whom and under whose supervision and subsequent approval:

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-34687990

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 2, 2015, 4:05 pm
  72. Random and admittedly highly speculative structural commentary from an amateur metal fabricator (almost went into the trade for civil engineering applications in a previous life, have been interested in this stuff ever since):

    The strongest method of manufacture of a metal structure is either die casting it as a single piece or machining it out a single block of material. But obviously, this only works for relatively small structures, like the engine blocks of automobiles for example.

    For large structures, you need to fasten components together, and there are three methods of fastening, in increasingly order of strengths: welds, screws and rivets!

    Welds and screws might be good enough for most applications (like stairs or cars, for example), but for airframes, they are too weak and fracture-prone, and only rivets will do! If you’ve ever noticed the dimpled appearance of the exterior skin of an airplane upon either boarding or deboarding it, what you are looking at are the rivets fastening the entire structure together.

    Obviously there is lots of redundancy and over-design here, and huge margins of safety (not to mention meticulous choice of materials), to the extent that I would consider “airframe integrity” to be a solved problem! I can’t imagine a normal scenario in this day and age where an airplane just falls apart in the air at cruising altitude! Even something like a botched repair at some point in the past should not have been enough to bring the plane down, since there should be enough reliability built-in to provide a significant amount of robustness and durability! (I am assuming a certain degree of operational diligence and watchfulness of course, and perhaps idealistically ruling out gross negligence or ineptness)

    P.S.: There are two ways to do riveting, “hot” and “cold”. I don’t know what the airframe guys use, but if you want to have some fun and have never seen the process before, search for “hot riveting” on YouTube…

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 2, 2015, 5:46 pm
  73. Analysis of Syria and Hezies so-called political ‘experts’ of the latest landslide Erdogan election,

    http://www.alarabiya.net/ar/last-page/2015/11/03/شاهد-DNA-.html

    Posted by Mustap | November 2, 2015, 8:34 pm
  74. Guys,

    Sorry for spamming you all about this Russian airliner crash but please bear with me. The Daily Beast thinks it has this whole thing figured out but I’m sorry I am not convinced at all by their working hypothesis:

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/11/02/don-t-believe-russian-airline-s-new-excuse-for-crash.html

    So let’s get their reasoning straight: The aircraft sustained some damage to the tail in 2001 that somehow caused the rear pressure bulkhead to explosively decompress in 2015 which caused the tail to break off in midflight and the plane to crash!

    This cascade of events doesn’t make any sense. For one thing, the rear pressure bulkhead is merely an interior partition and not a load-bearing structure, so it’s impossible to imagine an airframe design where external tail stresses are transferred to it (it would be like a house design that transfers the weight of the roof not to the beams and joists but to the bedroom drywall).

    And even if the bulkhead did fail, it doesn’t necessarily have to be explosive, and even if it was, it doesn’t necessarily have to cause the tail to break off! In fact, relying on such a cascade of events decreases the probabilistic likelihood that the accident actually happened this way. If the tail did in fact break off the aircraft (a fact apparently strongly corroborated by the distribution of the wreckage in the debris field), it’s likelier to have happened independently of this hypothesized cascade and instead due to a simpler, more direct, as-of-yet undetermined mechanism!

    Even the example they cite of the aircraft that crashed in 1985 due to an explosive decompression of the rear pressure bulkhead doesn’t support their working hypothesis! Never mind that 1985 was 30 years ago and therefore a completely different era as far as aircraft instrumentation and maintenance are concerned, but that plane didn’t crash anything like this Russian plane did! Everything about that 1985 incident, literally EVERYTHING, was different than what allegedly occurred here!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 3, 2015, 12:06 am
  75. Samer,

    You’re talking to a structural engineer (BSAE), and your knowledge is obviously acknowledged! Just FYI, I used to work for the company that makes the aerostats that just “flew” from APG, MD to the boonies of central PA last week. In fact, I use to design the tether. That is how I visited both Kuwait and the UAE.

    My belief, at this time, is that a bomb was placed in the aircraft like Pan Am 103 and exploded while at altitude. Apparently, there was little to no chance of a missile reaching the 30,000 ft. Moreover, ISIS claimed responsibility immediately after the accident, so there wasn’t any pussy-footing around in that regard.

    Of course, there is always a chance it could have been a structural/fatigue failure, but that is VERY rare. Your example of the Japanese aircraft is interesting, but there is also the example of the Hawaiian airliner that lost a portion of the top fuselage and still landed safely. Also, just to add additional controversy, I never believed the TWA FLT 800 theory of the central fuel tank exploding, and, as you probably know, there is a group of investigators who firmly believe it was shot down by a missile.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TWA_Flight_800

    I suppose we’ll have more information in the coming days/weeks to steer the investigation in the right direction.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 3, 2015, 7:37 am
  76. AP,

    The Japanese aircraft of 1985 was not specifically my example, it was the example cited by both the BBC and Daily Beast articles to support the “explosive decompression of the rear pressure bulkhead” hypothesis! But that example was a Boeing 747, a much larger aircraft than the Airbus A321 here (with therefore a much larger cabin that would have had to be pressurized), and even then the explosive decompression did not result in the tail breaking off but rather the rudder being disabled and the pilots losing control of the aircraft. They were still able to fly for around half an hour before crashing into a mountainside!

    Yes, not all decompressions are explosive as you cite with your example of entire portions of fuselages coming undone but the aircraft still remaining flying. These incidents are dangerous because a loss of cabin pressure denies air for passengers to breathe, not because it is an automatic risk to airframe integrity. The contingency in such situations is to reduce altitude immediately to atmospheric air at a higher pressure (and of course to deploy the breathing masks from the overhead compartments).

    And yes, that which is “incendiary” (ie. burns) is not necessarily explosive. Smoke or a fire onboard is extremely dangerous if it damages critical infrastructure and hence results in disability but is not what happened here (I am thinking of the recent 787 Dreamliner incidents surrounding the lithium batteries overheating, and the contingency there was to place them in an enclosure that would contain a fire and prevent it from spreading).

    The news on CNN this morning was that US military satellites were able to pick up signals of a “heat flash” that suggests a mid-air explosion that brought the plane down. I actually agree with this, which is also your working hypothesis! Interesting that you mention Pan Am 103 (the “Lockerbie” incident for people who might not know), because it’s been on my mind recently. PBS Frontline did a 3-part series on the subsequent investigations into the incident called “My Brother’s Bomber” which made for extremely interesting viewing!

    A few people on Twitter remembered the “underwear/shoe bomber” incidents from a while back, but I was thinking more along the lines of that plot from Yemen, also from a while back, about hiding explosives in printer cartridges and smuggling them onto airplanes! It’s terrifying to consider, and hard to imagine how one would prove sabotage like this after the fact and beyond a reasonable doubt, especially considering the circumstance of a Russian airliner taking off from and flying over Egyptian territory.

    Again, people on Twitter have been discussing things like fuel and fire patterns in the wreckage, but in the case of the Lockerbie incident, definitive proof of sabotage came when they found the “timer” (ie. an airplane already has plenty of fuel and flammable things on board so proof of those things alone is not sufficient to determine sabotage)! Finding chemical traces of something like plastic explosives would also be strong evidence of sabotage. And finally, obviously in the unlikely case of the bomber being on board the plane and being the actual detonator, then a “timer” will never be found!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 3, 2015, 12:47 pm
  77. Chunks from an approaching planetoid TB145 2015 observed by NASA may be responsible for the Rusky plane crash.

    The planetoid, about 600 km in diameter, had been observed heading towards earth. Chunks of the planetoid may have separated from the main body and hit the plane in midair.

    Since it may have been a heavenly mass that struck the airplane, then divine justice is the most appropriate conclusion for the cause of the doomed plane.

    Putin should think twice from now on before firing BUKs on Makaysian civilian airplanes or killing Syrians in Syria.

    Posted by Mustap | November 3, 2015, 2:44 pm
  78. Tuned into CNN over lunch just in time to hear Richard Quest say some very interesting things about the “heat flash” that the US military apparently detected over the Sinai at the time of the Russian crash! I haven’t had any time to research or corroborate any of what Richard Quest said, but apparently the US military, while able to detect the missile that brought down MH17 over Ukraine, nevertheless did not detect a heat flash in that incident. Apparently MH17’s fuel did not ignite and the plane did not start burning until it impacted the ground!

    This actually makes perfect sense when one considers that the missile that brought down MH17 most likely did not detonate upon impact with its target! That would have been too tight, strict and unreliable a performance specification! Instead, the missile probably had some type of “proximity fuse” such that it detonated when it was “close enough” to its target to substantially damage it structurally!

    In the Sinai situation, the Russian plane apparently started burning in the air! This actually corroborates all the commentary that has come out recently asserting that the plane was flying at too high an altitude to be struck by any [shoulder-fired] missile system that any militants might have possessed and launched from the ground!

    So whatever exploded on the Russian plane must have been onboard the entire time! Let’s assume that it was an act of malice, that it was a bomb! A lot of suspicion is on ISIS, but I actually think that is casting the net way too narrow!

    I worry that this might have been what the US military in Afghanistan would call a “Green on Blue” attack! These are the hardest attacks to defend against! They’re basically when a rogue person from within the establishment who has all the right credentials and clearances is able to get closer to his target from the inside than any militant from the outside can ever dream of! This of course might be someone who covertly sympathizes with either ISIS or the Muslim Brotherhood!

    Welcome to the future, everyone! I’ll spare you the suspense and tell you from now: It’s gonna suck! Big time!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 3, 2015, 3:08 pm
  79. So whatever exploded on the Russian plane must have been onboard the entire time!

    Samer,

    Those are my thoughts as well. “Egyptian security” is an oxymoron. Just look at the Sinai. That little peninsula has turned into a mini-Afghanistan. Well, at least I was able to climb Mt. Sinai before it became and ISIS oasis.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 3, 2015, 4:12 pm
  80. Since Ben Carson doesn’t believe in political correctness and even goes as far as to state that it’s destroying the country, does that free us to assert that his wife, despite having studied music at Yale and apparently once been a concert violinist, sings like a drunkard in a karaoke bar? 🙂

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 3, 2015, 9:07 pm
  81. Good luck Putin. I hope he can defeat Daesh

    POSTED BY VULCAN | OCTOBER 27, 2015, 9:27 PM

    You are a true patriot, Vulcan. If successful, Putin will have in essence, helped to create a de facto Safe Zone shielding Lebanon from the eaters of human carrion.

    Samer and APalace (the controversy re TWA 800 is being referred to in the context of this latest incident!), please keep up the good work on the Russian plane. It’s difficult to separate the wheat from the fertilizer. The fact that major airlines immediately changed their routes to avoid the Sinai was a big “tell” that something was amiss. Uncle Sam is not the only entity w/ the ability to detect the heat signature suggestive of an explosive incident.

    BTW, CNN’s Richard Quest comes by his expertise on aviation disasters by virtue of his Brit accent. He has, in the past, been known for his legitimate in-depth knowledge of the Royal Family and their hijinks.

    Posted by lally | November 3, 2015, 9:45 pm
  82. Ezzat’lah Soleimani, a so-called Iranian general, has just been eliminated by the brave people of Syria. We’re investigating if this Soleimani is any relation to Qassem Soleimani. We’ll let you know of the result.

    In addition to this so-called general 60 more so-called Iranian generals have been eliminated by the brave Syrians according to Italian news agency Aki. Hunderds other lesser rank Iranian thugs have also been destroyed, again by none other than the brave Syrian people.

    Posted by Mustap | November 3, 2015, 10:52 pm
  83. Guys, the 10th Twin Cities Arab Film Festival opens tomorrow. The last I checked “Mizna”, the 501(c)(3) organization that puts this event together, was the only Arab American arts organization in the country. Their literary publication is the only one of its kind in North America:

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 4, 2015, 11:08 am
  84. Due to the lebendary bravery, courage and heroism of the Syrian people, increasing members of the so-called Iranistani Revolutionary Guards are facing court martials due to refusal of deployment in Syria, a country which has turned into a graveyard for these Iranistanis. Unnamed cinfidential sources in the Iranistan revealed the information recently.

    Apparently, not everyone in Iranistan believes the farce of the supreme thug who claims to be defending some imaginary graves in Syria. Close scrutiny of the claim would lead to the unavoidable conclusion that there are no such graves in Syria. Most likely, these are empty tombs since the same person(s) alleged to be burried in those graves seem to be burried in other graves in different countries thousands of miles apart. Such claims are no less bogus than the claim that so-called supreme thugs descend from the holy Prophet.

    Posted by Mustap | November 4, 2015, 8:03 pm
  85. Ben Carson: The Pyramids were built to store grain!

    Donald Trump: They should have been walls to keep immigrants out!

    Chris Christie: In New Jersey we use grain to make bread for sandwiches!

    Rand Paul: There’s an image of a pyramid on the dollar bill, that dastardly fiat currency that we should replace with the gold standard!

    Ted Cruz: All the small pyramids were bulldozed by tyrants to build the big ones!

    Marco Rubio: I once put $80,000 on my credit card to buy a goddamn pyramid, and I don’t even remember why!

    Jeb Bush: I swear those French pyramids were not my brother’s fault! Oh, wait! The pyramids weren’t French? Sorry France!

    Mike Huckabee: Those pyramids should have been cubes! Pyramids are queer, unnatural, an abomination!

    Carly Fiorina: It might just be my estrogen speaking but I say bomb those goddamn pyramids! Am I right, Netanyahu?

    John Kasich: Seriously, guys? Seriously?

    Rick Santorum: Hello?

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 5, 2015, 4:12 pm
  86. In The last 24 hours 30 hezies were eliminated in the Idlib area by, you guessed, none other than the brave and heroic Syrian people.

    One may say this has become a norm and it deserves no special attention. However, I can tell you for sure that it does. You need to examine where those hezies came from in order to discern the significance. Seventeen of these hezies came from the south. While the remaining three came from Beirut and the Bekaa. It’s clear now that the thug supreme of Lebanon can only count on support for his faltering war on those who originate from his southern neighborhoods, and It’s also clear he’s losing his appeal among those from other areas. It wouldn’t be long before he loses appeal even among his southern comrades at the current rate of killings of his thugs.

    Posted by Mustap | November 5, 2015, 4:21 pm
  87. No brainer.

    The worst republican candidate is better than the best democrat candidate.

    Socialism is killing Europe. Don’t let it kill the US.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 5, 2015, 9:52 pm
  88. I find a Zio calling Mr. Obama names and describing Mr. Kerry as a man with child’s brain to be a travesty.

    But haven’t we seen Zios here resorting to the same tactic of calling names?

    Then there’s nothing new.

    Where art thou 3issa?

    Posted by Mustap | November 6, 2015, 10:24 am
  89. So Marco Rubio is getting a lot of flak for supposedly being irresponsible with his personal finances, but I gotta tell you guys, he said something in the last debates which strongly suggested that he’s also very weak on small business accounting!

    He told this sentimental story about how his I guess individual dry cleaner couldn’t compete with the corporation up the street because he paid more in taxes than it did, and Rubio then exploited the melodrama to suggest that the tax code needed to be reformed or something!

    I swear when he made that argument on TV, I found myself thinking, “Oh, come to me, Marco Rubio, my little grasshopper, and let me teach you how all this stuff is done!”

    First things first: Self-employed people actually do pay more in individual taxes than employed people do, but it only amounts to a few percent! What’s going on there is that in a normal employer/employee relationship, the payroll taxes, also called the FICA taxes I think, are split 50/50 between the employer and the employee. But when a person is self-employed, obviously they end up paying 100% of the payroll/FICA taxes!

    This can play into the issue of whether a person is an employee or a contractor of a company, which I’ve seen cut both ways over my career! Employees of course get W-2’s at the end of the year, while contractors get 1099’s! I once worked at a large technology company where upper management decided there were too many highly paid contractors running around, and it demanded that they all be fired and then hired back as employees! But I also constantly read news article about low-paid people suing their employers for designating them as contractors and not employees and using that designation to deny them benefits!

    So yeah, a self-employed person can just operate as a sole proprietor and declare all his income on Schedule C of his 1040 (Individual Income Tax Form). But that’s not a very smart way to do it because it doesn’t afford any limited liability! To get limited liability, that person would need to set up a Limited Liability Company (LLC)! If it’s a single member LLC, then it doesn’t need to file any tax forms, and all its income “passes through” to the 1040 of its single member!

    Now if it was a multi-member LLC, it would need to file Form 1065 (Partnership Income Tax Form), and then all its income, while not taxed, gets distributed to its members as a K-1 form, which each member records on his Schedule C!

    But yes, individual income tax rates are higher than corporate income tax rates! So how can a small business owner reduce her taxes? It used to be that the small business owner needed to set up a corporation (C-corporation), but today there’s another option afforded by the flexibility of the modern LLC!

    LLC’s actually have a choice on how they want to be taxed! They can either be taxed as partnerships as I’ve already noted, or they can be taxed as corporations (S-corporation)! If they opt for S-corp status, then they file Form 1120S (Corporate Income Tax Form)! But there’s a catch, I think!

    Owners of S-Corps need to set up a payroll system such that they pay themselves fair salaries as employees. So basically, an owner would pay individual income tax rates on their salary! And whatever is left over for the corporation gets taxed at a reduced corporate income tax rate! The corporation can hold on to that money and reinvest it of course, but if it decides to distribute it to its owners as dividends, then those dividends get taxed again (this is the notorious “double taxation” of dividends at work)!

    Which leads me naturally to the other utterly absurd thing a Republican candidate said during the debates! It was when Carly Fiorina said she could reduce the US tax code to only 3 pages! I swear, the only reasonable response to that election promise is, “Hahahahahahahaha!”

    Disclaimer: I am not a CPA (Certified Public Accountant)! Seek the professional advice of a competent CPA before acting on any of the above, which I am not liable for! 🙂

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 6, 2015, 12:50 pm
  90. If registered democrats were forced to pay 1.5x more tax than ever one else, there would be no democrats to speak of. And illegal immigration would dry up faster than a wet t-shirt in Phoenix.

    Meanwhile, they sure have many ideas how to
    spend eveyone else’s money.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 6, 2015, 2:11 pm
  91. The demented butcher thought the Ruskies will save him, and his demented backers celebrated the dementia. However, his assured fate of destruction is drawing closer due to the legendary heroism and bravery of the Syrian people who are this fate becoming real day by day,

    http://www.alarabiya.net/ar/arab-and-world/syria/2015/11/07/ضباط-النظام-يتهاوون-أمام-ضربات-الثوار-في-حماة.html

    And the Iranstanis are not faring any better either

    http://www.alarabiya.net/ar/iran/2015/11/07/إيران-تخسر-جنرالاً-رفيعاً-على-يد-ثوار-حلب.html

    More losses and more killings of thugs, so-called high ranking.

    We mentioned here not long ago that Assad’s final dance of death has just begun. He’s about to go down to meet his exexutioner with a big bang. And those who backed him will go down with him including those of the cesspool.

    Posted by Mustap | November 7, 2015, 7:31 am
  92. Again, we must never forget to express thanks and gratitude to the Wise King who, with legendary and unprecedented and unmatched generosity, provided the Syrian people with all their needs and the logistics to achieve their steadfastness and victories over evil.

    Posted by Mustap | November 7, 2015, 7:40 am
  93. Example of an article you will never read in the liberal, MSM….

    Arab MKs must internalize the fact that in the end we, the Arabs, live together with the Jews. We can’t change this fact and it won’t change, and we must work together as much as possible to create true coexistence here. By the way, I’m not ashamed of the fact that I work to be part of the establishment. I want the best for those who live in my village. I want the best education for my children and students. I want a functioning society, law and order, and culture, and everything that other citizens receive. So I will work as much as possible with the establishment in order to achieve these goals.

    http://mida.org.il/2015/10/29/i-believe-in-partnership-an-israeli-arab-leader-dissents/

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 7, 2015, 8:12 pm
  94. Was GHWB’s attack on Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney a manifestation of paternal instincts?

    Or was it an implicit admission that the father knows deep well in his heart that the son is a pathetic idiot?

    GHWB admitted by this attack that his son’s wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were misguided and as every American now knows led to America’s demise in the world.

    It took the genius of an Obama, the last great President to rule this land, to extricate the US from such idiocy of the Bushes.

    Posted by Mustap | November 8, 2015, 8:56 am
  95. Terrorism 101: Just use paper cups and string NewZ

    The report quoted a US official briefed on the intelligence, as well as a diplomatic source, who told the TV network that Israeli intelligence officials provided American and British intelligence agencies with intercepted communications between Islamic State terrorists about the crash.

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4722705,00.html

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 9, 2015, 10:45 am
  96. OK! I just read that Ynetnews article that AP posted, and I will say this: Someone needs to muzzle that Ayman Al Muqaddam fella (Egyptian aviation official, member of the Aviation Incidents Committee and lead investigator according to the piece) because he’s spouting so much nonsense it’s not only embarrassing but also infuriating! Who does this callous clown think he’s kidding?

    Let’s start with this ridiculous and contradictory narrative: The pilot had “reported technical difficulties before losing contact with air traffic controllers (ATC)” and also apparently “reported his intention to attempt to land at the nearest airport” [the sequencing of the pilot’s reporting is not clearly ascertained in the story]. But then “the plane appear[s] to have broken up in mid-air while it was being flown on auto-pilot, and […] a noise ha[s] been heard in the last second of the cockpit recording.”

    This story is completely bunk, because:

    1) Any verbal communications between the pilot and ATC should have been recorded and made public by now.

    2) Any “nearest airport” that the pilot was targeting should have been identified by now, and a rationale provided for why that airport was selected versus other emergency options (like, for example, turning around and attempting an emergency landing in the water where runway precision issues like undershoots and overshoots are not a concern)!

    3) If the pilot did indeed reroute the plane, the first thing he would have done is either change the settings of the auto-pilot or taken the plane out of auto-pilot and assumed full, manual control of the aircraft. Both those actions would have been picked up by a service like ‘Flight Radar 24’ (which provided the very early details of the GermanWings crash) and been corroborated by the subsequent analysis of the flight data recorders!

    Moving on, when “asked to explain the remaining 10 percent margin of doubt”, Al Muqaddam apparently “cited other possibilities on Saturday including a fuel explosion, metal fatigue in the plane or lithium batteries overheating”.

    What I want to do here is destroy the ‘lithium batteries overheating’ hypothesis:

    1) Yes, lithium batteries have been in the news recently because they caused smoke on some Boeing 787 Dreamliners. But the 787 is a rather unique and exceptional aircraft, because it is “bleedless”. In a traditional jet aircraft, compressed “bleed air” is diverted from the turbines to provide either functionality or power to some of the aircraft’s systems. Since the 787 was going for fuel efficiency, it decided to reduce the amount of bleed air if not eliminate it entirely and use onboard lithium batteries (which are charged prior to take-off) to compensate and provide electrical power to the aircraft’s systems instead. The subsequent issue with those batteries was not that they were explosive or even that they caused a fire, but that they overheated to the extent of causing smoke in the cabin which is very alarming on an aircraft. This issue caused the grounding of the 787 for a while, but it’s been since tackled and the 787 is back in the air! But regardless, this should not be a concern for the A321 here, because it is an older, more traditional aircraft!

    2) Yes, there might have been lithium batteries in the cargo hold! But this is unlikely, since the A321 is not a cargo plane and Sharm El Sheikh is not a trade hub (like Dubai, for example)! If there were batteries on board they should have been declared in the cargo manifest but even if they did explode, the worst they could have caused was a fire. This fire might have been sufficient to crash the plane, but remember, the defining characteristic of this accident is not just that the plane crashed, but that it very suddenly “broke[] up in mid-air”!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 9, 2015, 3:39 pm
  97. Samer,

    Egyptian spokespeople have to spout government propaganda.

    What else is new?

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 9, 2015, 7:40 pm
  98. Mr. Obama has become less great in the last two days due to his meeting with Neten, a known terrorist,.

    Posted by mustap | November 10, 2015, 8:48 am
  99. Lest we Forget!

    Posted by Danny | November 11, 2015, 12:55 pm
  100. I DVR’ed last night’s Republican debates and haven’t watched them yet, but I suspect there was the requisite amount of fawning over Israel and bashing Obama for snubbing Netanyahu!

    Well, to provide some perhaps valuable juxtaposition, here’s a story of some extremely ambitious and enterprising Israeli hackers getting busted in the US for a panoply of financial crimes:

    http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2015/11/us-charges-three-men-with-widespread-hacking-whose-targets-included-jp-morgan/

    I am technically not a cyber-security professional, but I know the basics of cyber-security. For example, the Heartbleed vulnerability that these guys exploited in one of their break-ins has to do with an open-source implementation of SSL (Secure Sockets Layer), which basically means it impacted Linux-based systems and not say, Windows-based ones! This is actually quite important because while open-source advocates love to rail against “vendor lock-in” and “oppressive contracts”, the reality is that open-source is not very secure! We’re seeing that right now with Android and the absolute nightmare which is distributing security patches to its fragmented and intransigent ecosystem.

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 11, 2015, 1:12 pm
  101. Samer,

    Apparently they’ve all been arrested. I hope they get what is coming to them.

    As far as the “requisite amount of fawning over Israel”, there are many things one can do about that:

    – don’t DVR the GOP debate
    – vote democrat
    – use earplugs
    – support an anti-Israel Middle East dictator

    Apparently, this phenomenon can cause many people to spontaneously combust and even sometimes, stab the nearest jew…

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4723730,00.html

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 11, 2015, 1:30 pm
  102. AP,

    Your problem is the only way you know to win an argument is to reduce it to the absurd! But the triumph is fleeting because you only win it in your own mind, since your powers of persuasion are nil! And you end up circling the same hackneyed territory over and over and over again, resulting in a dreadful ennui that you probably shrewdly hope for to shield you from subsequent criticism and argument… 🙂

    On a friendlier note, relax dude! I am not anti-Israel! In fact, I was going to comment here a few days ago that we were doing very well recently on not mentioning Israel but you went ahead and broke the silence with a series of Israel-based hyperlinks! Go back and read the thread again, affirm that fact, and remember it the next time you want to accuse any of us here of being “obsessed with Israel” because “it is in our nature”! 🙂

    In conclusion, LONG LIVE NETANYAHU!!! Are you frickin’ happy now? 🙂

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 11, 2015, 1:49 pm
  103. Here’s what’s wrong with Israel (is)…

    Enjoy!

    Posted by Danny | November 11, 2015, 1:49 pm
  104. So Marco Rubio told the entire country yesterday that it needed more welders and less philosophers!

    OK, let’s play along with this for a while!

    What, pray tell, Marco Rubio our dear Republican genius, would these welders weld? And for how long?

    It can’t be cars, because all the welding there is done by robots!

    It would have to be bridges, ships, buildings, pipelines and steel structures like refineries!

    So basically, Marco Rubio, what you are endorsing is a massive, sustained building boom in the United States that would drive up the demand for welders enough to influence the career choices of people who might otherwise gravitate towards the liberal arts!

    OK! So where is this building boom gonna come from, Rubio? It can’t be government spending, cause Republicans are against that! It can’t be debt, cause Repubs demand a balanced budget! It can’t be taxes, cause Repubs want to reduce them!

    OK, so who’s left and what exactly are you saying? That without taxes or government spending, American corporations are gonna go crazy and just want to build steel infrastructure willy-nilly? How can you be so sure that the capital and pent-up demand are there? What if you’re wrong and they aren’t? Let’s not even tackle the question of who will train all these welders with the requisite skills and experience and how long it will take.

    I used ‘corporations’ quite deliberately in the previous paragraph, because not even the American individual can sustain the American market for welders! Almost all the residential real estate in the United States is wooden, light-frame construction! You see a lot of people on US residential construction sites: framers, concrete guys (for basements and foundations), electricians, plumbers, HVAC guys, siding and roofing guys! But what you DON’T see are welders!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 11, 2015, 6:36 pm
  105. Here’s what’s wrong with Israel (is)…

    Danny,

    Gideon Levy from Haaretz? Really?

    Anyway thanks for high-lighting what’s wrong with Israel. If we could fix it, the Middle East will be a much better place.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 11, 2015, 6:54 pm
  106. The Middle East becomes a better place wen the Israeli regime is destroyed once and for all.

    Posted by mustap | November 11, 2015, 8:43 pm
  107. AP,

    I guess he is s nobody right? …and was NOT invited by your biggest lobby group right? Pffft!! Truth does really hurt! The chosen one for sure.

    Posted by Danny | November 12, 2015, 9:48 am
  108. It has the best coffee and pastries in town! It’s the see and be seen spot where all the who’s who get together to schmooze, hobnob and people watch! Yup, it’s the Rancor Café in the Israel Lobby of the Intercontinental Hotel! 🙂

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 12, 2015, 10:41 am
  109. Danny,

    Stop with “the chosen” BS already. Your above that, unless you’re an anti-semite (which I know you aren’t).

    Israel is full of left-wing, anti-zionist JEWS and Haaretz usually leads the way. I don’t know the individual well, but after the first minute of your video, I had enough. Then I saw the Haaretz label, and it all made sense.

    Israel, like all people, have the right to defend themselves. But that is nothing new. The Palis and Israelis have to sit down an iron out their differences, snooze, snooze, blah, blah, which they came rather close to at one time. Both sides happy where they are. End of story, chosen or not.

    Samer,

    Israel lobby, arab lobby, oil lobby, defense lobby, Chosen lobby, liberal lobby, Resistance Lobby, Hobby Lobby. Can you name them all? They should have collectors cards for kids.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 12, 2015, 11:42 am
  110. I feel bad for the Slobby Lobby that always gets teased by the Snobby Lobby!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 12, 2015, 12:13 pm
  111. Head-wrapped supreme Lebanon thug is accepting condolences in his south Beirut cave during normal business hours.

    Posted by mustap | November 12, 2015, 12:34 pm
  112. Moustapha the paid hater: I hope soon your hell that you call kingdom will disappear. It’s becoming a burden on humanity and it has turned its paid servants like you into zombies that don’t care or move when innocent people die. You are tasteless in your comment like your gods (emirs) are in about everything they do on earth. There are more than 40 civilians lebanese that died yesterday from stupid haters…the SAME “wahhabi school-thought” as you….
    wahhabi asil! Humans have no value, women have lower than animal value… and that’s god’s will.
    Soon soon….a new “hate” is coming to your kingdom to defeat your kind of hate. That should be a bloody scene for you to enjoy!

    Posted by George Haddad | November 13, 2015, 7:44 am
  113. And George Haddad, while you rip up Saudi Arabia and their paid sunni jihadi ISIS, ISIL and the like, don’t pretend Iran, Hezbollah and Iran are any different.

    The whole sunni-shia rift is all made possible because the ME is run by families and not the voting public. You guys need to vote, have a constitution, an independent judiciary, and a strong military that takes orders from a president with set term limits.

    Anything else is just murder and mayhem.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 13, 2015, 8:08 am
  114. George Haddad,

    I care more about the Syrian civilians that are being killed daily by the supreme Lebanese thug and his hateful followers than so-called innocent Lebanese. How do you know that these so-called Lebanese are innocent and not In fact hateful murderous supporters of the wrapped-head supreme thug? How do you know that they don’t follow the orders of the supreme thug and go on murder sprees in Syria? You don’t. You just support them because your senile so-called General tells you to do so.

    As for the Wise Kingdom, it is the greatest gift to humanity in this day and age. And you can be sure it’ll outlast anything you may dream of.

    Hope your senile so-called general will soon go to hell and rid humanity of his ugly presence.

    Posted by Mustap | November 13, 2015, 8:25 am
  115. Mustap, you brought a “general” into the victims issue? wtf man, you think that people care about killings just from their narrow view? man…you exactly answered like you are…de-synthesized and borg like…that’s kind of normal I guess for you really; I should not interfere nor talk to people like you…mama said so; so long time ago.
    I retreat moon walk MJ style…

    Posted by George Haddad | November 13, 2015, 9:20 am
  116. I now understand, George, that during the last five years when innocent Syrians were being murdered by the supreme Lebanon thug you were busy dancing MJ style? And now is time for a moon walk finale?

    Supreme thug would definitely love your moon walk retreat as a ‘solemn’ sign of expressing a condolence. Hehehehehe…..

    What else did your mom teach you?

    You really think the senile so-called general has no say in what you say?

    Are you sure you’re not upset because I told you he should go to hell?

    OK. Here again. He can go to hell.

    Posted by mustap | November 13, 2015, 10:10 am
  117. The “Unprofessional Conduct” Conspiracy and why the ME lags the rest of the World NewZ

    http://news.yahoo.com/egypts-woes-erode-el-sissis-image-invincibility-162951342.html

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 13, 2015, 11:51 am
  118. Looks like Syria has moved to Paris.

    Wonder what liberal governments will do to protect themselves? Issue more apologies? Sign more agreements? Take in more refugees? That’s my prediction.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 13, 2015, 6:46 pm
  119. Most of the world now believes that had it not been for the idiocy of GWB in going ahead with a disastrous war against Afghanistan first, and then compounding it with an unjustifiable act of aggression against Iraq to remove its rightful ruler, the world would be today a much safer place. Many innocent people would have been spared the futile ends they’re meeting.

    What were thinking GWB? O’ my mistake. Idiots don’t think.

    Posted by Mustap | November 13, 2015, 7:46 pm
  120. We’ve noticed with great astonishment that the only country that has been immune from terror attacks is none but the one ruled by the thug supreme. In fact, the only terror experienced in that thugocracy is the terror sanctioned by the supremes. It appears that there are great advantages and benefits that come with achieving monopoly over the exercise of terror.

    Posted by mustap | November 13, 2015, 9:10 pm
  121. We’ve also noticed that Mishap is a raving lunatic.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 13, 2015, 9:22 pm
  122. We’ve also noticed that even the most depraved republicans can no longer defend the unpardonable acts of GWB…. Except the raving Zio republican resident of this site.

    Posted by mustap | November 13, 2015, 9:54 pm
  123. We’ve also noticed that the Israeli regime has begun as a terrorist regime, back when the world didn’t know anything about terror, an achievement every Zio should be proud of. It continues to exercise terror and recently has been attempting to emulate the thug supremes in tying to achieve monopoly over the exercise of terror. Its means to do so is mostly through terrorizing underage children.

    The Wise King has recently condemned this Zio practice describing the regime as the most heinous and most despicable in the entire world.

    Posted by mustap | November 13, 2015, 10:06 pm
  124. Fuck off Mustap, your days and the days of your caliphate are numbered. the latest massacre in France is the last nail in your coffin. We will hunt you and kill you like the dogs you are.

    Posted by Vulcan | November 14, 2015, 4:37 am
  125. We’ve also noticed that Vilcan is a raving lunatic who goes on uncontrollable raging fits very frequently.

    Posted by mustap | November 14, 2015, 5:01 am
  126. We’ve also noticed that the Chappel Hill shooting killer was described by the media as a mentally challenged individual with all the honours and privileges that go with the title.

    We expect in this case that if the killer was black he’d be called a full fledged criminal.

    Further more if he was a Muslim he’d be automatically called a terrorist.

    I think that the media labelling scheme in the western world has become worn out and not worthy of paying attention to.

    Game over.

    Posted by mustap | November 14, 2015, 1:33 pm
  127. The Pot Calling the Kettle Black NewZ

    “We, Hezbollah, express our strong condemnation and denunciation of the terrorist attack by the criminals of Daesh in Paris,” he said in a televised address, using the Arabic acronym for the jihadist group. 

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 15, 2015, 9:45 am
  128. The world today is definitely far less safe than the day when GWB, an idiot elected as President, took America on the disastrous road of aggression and futile conquests that ended up in utter failures. America’s hope and salvation rest upon the shoulders of the last available great President, Barak Obama. The deluge follows his departure from office.

    Posted by Mustap | November 15, 2015, 1:24 pm
  129. We need not forget to mention that the aggressive behaviour of the US does not begin by the idiocy of GWB. It actually began at least 70 years earlier and continued unabated until GWB took it to a higher level by actually invading other nations, particularly Afghanistan and Iraq. US aggression began by supporting an ilegitimate Israeli regime for over sixty years.

    Posted by Mustap | November 15, 2015, 5:07 pm
  130. Well, in the aftermath of the little ISIS attack in Paris, everyone is talking tough.

    Which, I think, is all talk and bluster and won’t amount to anything.

    Obama withdrew from the ME to prove GWB was wrong. Obama actually has proved GWB was right.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 15, 2015, 8:24 pm
  131. We also need not forget to mention the disastrous effects special interest groups have had upon the demise the US is experiencing. We mention in particular the notorious group known as AIPAC whose sole purpose is to serve the interests of foreign entities with no regards whatsoever to the US interests. This group is the single most treasonous group operating on US soil and would use any means at its disposal to attain its illegitimate goals including blackmail, embezzlement, distortion, criminal activities and anything you may think of.

    The US and its ordinary citizens have been sucked dry by groups such as AIPAC and many others while law enforcement stands helpless in pursuing them because they simply control the political class which always operates according to the dictates of these lobbies.

    The seeds of the US demise have been sown long ago. GWB was simply the last tool in their hands. He proved most useful to them of course due to his natural idiocy.

    Posted by mustap | November 15, 2015, 9:38 pm
  132. Saying GWB was an idiot doesn’t really give justice to how pathetic the man is. Read and enjoy,

    http://deredactie.be/cm/vrtnieuws.english/News/1.2497899

    Posted by mustap | November 17, 2015, 10:06 am
  133. Utterly mediocre article by Thanassis Cambanis paints a dismal picture of Lebanon while impressively managing to pander to Lebanese conceits by getting its statistics wrong. This Cambanis fella has written articles from Assad’s Syria and I get the impression he prefers to acquire his information by talking to Levantine blowhards instead of poring over admittedly probably non-existent data:

    http://www.tcf.org/blog/detail/lebanon-can-survive-bombings-but-not-its-own-failing-state

    How can he assert for example that the Sunni share of the Lebanese population is shrinking while the Shia share is growing without citing any Census data? Is this what Joe Blow from Bumpkinville, Lebanon told him over a cup of tea or whatever while also claiming that the Blows are descendants of Cleopatra and their spoken dialect is uniquely derived from her cat’s meowing that has miraculously endured through the ages?

    The worst cock-up though is in the final paragraph when he describes Jordan and Egypt as being “much poorer” than Lebanon! This is complete nonsense! The last I checked, Jordan and Lebanon have largely comparable GDP’s with Jordan having a slightly smaller per capita GDP because it has a slightly larger population. Egypt’s GDP dwarfs those of both Lebanon and Jordan and is third in the region only to those of Saudi Arabia and the UAE, but its per capita numbers are admittedly in the toilet because Egypt has the largest population in the Arab World!

    There are certain things I think you can claim about Lebanon regionally, that Beirut’s real estate for example attracts more foreign investment than, say, Amman’s! But this is not nearly the same as saying that Jordan is “much poorer” than Lebanon! Also, you can’t validate this kind of assertion simply by talking to the Lebanese elite, considering that theirs is a country with a notoriously unequal distribution of wealth! These clowns probably come to America and think to themselves that they are slumming it in the Third World, but just because they believe these things doesn’t make them true!

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 18, 2015, 12:38 pm
  134. Hillary Clinton may yet prove to be the best choice Americans may have following the exit of what seems to be the last available great presidents.

    Her remarks in front of the foreign relations committee may indicate that she may have a good grasp and understanding of international issues. She made excellent remarks regarding the war being waged by the Wise Kingdom against the Iranistani Trojan horses. She also seems to be a person of intelligence compared to the roomful of charlatans on the other side, especially when it comes to their ridiculous stand on Syrian refugees.

    Posted by mustap | November 20, 2015, 9:28 pm
  135. OMG! Saw the saddest thing on YouTube today! Korean guy visits Beirut, succumbs to peer pressure, and tragically falls from grace: 🙂

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 21, 2015, 5:03 pm
  136. Mustap,

    I’ll vote for Hillary if you give me 1000 Canadian dollars. Isn’t that how it’s done in the Akbar Kingdom?

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 21, 2015, 8:10 pm
  137. Akbar,

    I don’t think the US is capable of becoming a wise state at this point in its develoment. It’ll take quite sometime to reach such important milestone. In the meantime, the US must do what it can do and not what it cannot do. This is called being realistic given the circumstances. While this desire on your part to accelerate the US develoment into wisdom is highly appreciated and commended, yet we advise against it for the moment.

    The way I see it and I hope you do too is that the US is and will be in jeopardy, especially after the departure of what seems to be the last available great president. There are two options in this case. The first one is we keep the last available great president for few more terms or perhaps for life. This option will accelerate your expressed desire towards progress and becoming wise. It will also helps to counteract the US descent into irrelevance while new generations of Americans are brought up in an environment shielded from the influence of the Hollywood temples. The second, of course, is to choose an alternative based on the existing system. So, if it takes 1000 Canadian dollars to do so and get your vote on board to avoid the jeopardizing scenario, then I’m willing to do my part and contribute and send you a cheque. You may think of it as a campaign contribution. Isn’t that how it is done under the existing system of the Akbar US?

    On second thoughts, however, can we not do it like they do it in supermakets and settle on an amount like 999.99 Canadian dollars? We did cancel the penny from our currency system, yet supermarkets here are still fond of it. We need to follow a business model, even if it is rediculously outdated.

    Posted by Mustap | November 21, 2015, 10:12 pm
  138. Things are now going to get more interesting and more complicated in Syria. Turkey will impose within a week a safe zone in northern Syria on its own without NATO.

    Turkish air force will enforce the safe zone which will extend from Jarablus to Azaz.

    Putin is going to lose his Syrian gamble and go back to the cold in Syberia a wounded animal.

    Posted by Mustap | November 22, 2015, 5:18 am
  139. Here’s some fun trivia for you guys: All the news agencies that have reported on this story have described the sabotaged Crimean/Ukrainian infrastructure as “electricity pylons”, which is understandable considering this is the [English] term used in Britain and Europe! But in the US, these things are called “transmission towers” instead!

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/11/22/us-ukraine-crisis-crimea-electricity-idUSKCN0TB04920151122

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 22, 2015, 1:24 pm
  140. Hey AP,

    I’ve found the perfect song for you on this chilly Sunday evening! Pump this through your speakers at full volume and dance around your room in unrestrained glee:

    Posted by Samer Nasser | November 22, 2015, 7:39 pm
  141. Come over to the dark side young Luke Skywalker.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | November 23, 2015, 10:27 am
  142. Qassem Soleimani and two other Iranistanis suffered life threatening injuries in Aleppo twelve days ago, thanks to a TOW missile supllied by the Wise Kingdom.

    Soleimani is currently undergoing treatment in a Tehran hospital. He has promised comrade Putin that he will win the battles for Aleppo and Homs if the comrade would send his planes to Syria to show some acrobatics. These ambitious goals seem to recede more and more into illusions as days go by. Comrade Putin is growing skeptical, desperate and disenchanted in the meantime.

    Wise decisions by the Wise ones always bear fruits.

    Posted by mustap | November 23, 2015, 11:43 am
  143. This is the new Iraq created by GWB and his idiots,

    Posted by mustap | November 23, 2015, 6:13 pm
  144. Turkey shows its teeth and shoots dow a Rusky aircraft. One Rusky pilot is dead and another one is in custody with Syrian rebels. Most likely the captured will be executed.

    Posted by mustap | November 24, 2015, 7:25 am
  145. As if one downed aircraft is not enough for the Rusks for one day. Rebels shoot down Rusky helicopter apparently searching for downed pilot(s). And on top of it all Rusky ambassador in Ankara called in for a dress down and formal protest against unwanted Rusky incursions.

    Wounded Lavrov cancels trip to Ankara, while comrade Putin pays farewell visit to Soleimani who is apparently on a death bed. Supreme thug is beginning to lose hope and reportedly ready to follow in his predecessor thug footsteps and swallow the cup of poison.

    The two pilots, that is one corpse and another alive are in rebels hands.

    Posted by mustap | November 24, 2015, 8:52 am
  146. When we said it’s a roomful of charlattans, we obviously underestimated the true level of degeneracy this US of A has sunk into.

    Posted by mustap | December 8, 2015, 5:09 pm
  147. Mustapha,
    oh noooooo! Do I hear the start of the blame game? I don’t blame you, you cannot do otherwise after all those thousands of uses of the word “Wise kingdom ” this “Wise king” that…in your posts threads.
    But not all is negative about your ontological posts; I admire your amazing ability to see the toothpick in the eyes of a Giant (the US of A)! and not the Huuuuuge anchor stuck up dangling out of your “wise” kingdom of Saud Inc Arabia pupils.
    If you juuuuust push that anchor in your eyes away for 1 second you will realize that It’s all over wise sailor.
    Not all is lost for your lovely opinions that reflect how your wise kingdom looks at the world around it.
    Your thread will be immortalized; I am sure, by an anthropologist looking for a thesis subject about “kitchy propaganda in the early 21st century”.

    …Degeneracy of the USA…he say! HA!

    Posted by George Haddad | December 11, 2015, 12:59 pm
  148. It’s not possible for followers of seniles to comprehend what Wisdom is, nor can they be trusted to voice an opinion distinguishing giants from midgets.

    The world needs wisdom and definiteliy senility is the utmost form pf degeneracy afflicting the human condition.

    No wonder you’re surrounded by trash living in a cesspool waiting for the rest of the planet to clean you up.

    May be you should re-read the main post. It may give you an incentive to get off yoir ass, go out and do some trash collection and be useful instead of being a burden on humanity.

    The world is indeed fortunate for having the Wise Kingdom and its Wise Sages.

    Posted by mustap | December 12, 2015, 2:02 am
  149. Qassem Soleimani is now dead. We just thought Lally must know since the thugs of Iranistan are refusing to announce his death. Soleimani failed to appear for a scheduled speech last monday and no reasons were given. Soleimani has been in a Tehran hospital since he was shot in Aleppo in October. He underwent two critical operations in the head. It seems he now succumbed and assumed his rightful place, of course in hell.

    On the other hand, the Iranistani thugs appear to be throwing the towel on late Soleimani’s terrorist campaign he planned with Putin before his demise.

    http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015-12-10/western-officials-iran-retreating-from-syria-fight

    Thanks once again to the unparalleled Wisdom of the Wise Kingdom and the support it provided to the rebels in Syria which made the above outcome become real.

    Posted by mustap | December 13, 2015, 10:40 am
  150. Happy Holidays, everyone! 🙂

    Posted by Samer Nasser | December 20, 2015, 12:10 pm
  151. Merry Christmas or rather Chanukah Baruch Mr. Samir Qantar. One less scum idolized by yellow jackets!

    Posted by Danny | December 20, 2015, 12:56 pm
  152. Yes. Merry Christmas and Happy New!

    One less wesistance pro, the world is a safer place.

    Posted by Akbar Palace | December 20, 2015, 7:03 pm
  153. The Amercan people continue to pay dearly for the stupid acts of one man, Georg W. Bush, and his manipulators the so-called clean breakers, or more appropriately America’s back breakers.

    Today, six american soldiers were killed on Afghanistan.

    Barack Obama continues to clean up the mess of a messy president.

    Posted by mustap | December 21, 2015, 1:37 pm

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