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    NY Times Shocked To Find Islamists Rising In Egypt

    NY Times Shocked To Find Islamists Rising In Egypt

    I have highlighted the romanticized view of uprisings in the Middle East taken by NY Times reporters and pundits, projecting Western liberal values onto what in many cases were fundamentalist and virulently anti-Semitic Islamists:

    The NY Times slowly is awakening to the fact that Islamists are on the upswing, although The Times acts as if this were a surprise development, Islamist Group Is Rising Force in a New Egypt:

    In post-revolutionary Egypt, where hope and confusion collide in the daily struggle to build a new nation, religion has emerged as a powerful political force, following an uprising that was based on secular ideals. The Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamist group once banned by the state, is at the forefront, transformed into a tacit partner with the military government that many fear will thwart fundamental changes.

    It is also clear that the young, educated secular activists who initially propelled the nonideological revolution are no longer the driving political force — at least not at the moment.

    As the best organized and most extensive opposition movement in Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood was expected to have an edge in the contest for influence. But what surprises many is its link to a military that vilified it.

    What a bunch of dupes and fools.  Not the Egyptians, the Editors, reporters and pundits at The Times. 

    The NY Times’ reporters on the ground in Egypt apparently did not see Islamism coming, unlike the right-bloggers in pajamas sitting in dimly lit basements with candy wrappers strewn on the floor.

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    viator | March 26, 2011 at 4:31 am

    Live updates on Syria’s uprising

    Now Lebanon

    viator | March 26, 2011 at 8:20 am

    Kurdish Syria



    "The Kurds, representing around 10% of the country’s population, are “ready, watching and waiting to take to the streets, as their cause is the strongest,” according to Robert Lowe, manager of the Middle East Centre at the London School of Economics and Political Science."


    Right next door are the finest troops in Iraq, or for that matter the region, the Kurdish Peshmerga

    Sorry – hit the wrong button and deleted this comment by Viator:

    Assad’s looming downfall?
    By JONATHAN SPYER, senior research fellow at the Gloria Center, IDC Herzliya.

    "Talking to Syrian oppositionists, the sense that the Assad regime is running out of options is indeed very strong. Some say the prospect of a “Hama rules” style bloodbath is now simply a bogeyman, a bluff on the part of a regime running out of steam. One veteran member of Syrian’s exiled opposition noted that the people of Syria had lost their fear. This meant the fall of the Assad regime could now only be a matter of time, whatever measures it took.

    Despite the undoubted aesthetic inferiority of the Assad regime’s information campaigns, however, it would be a major mistake to start dusting off the eulogies for the Alawite/Ba’athist family dictatorship in Damascus just yet."

    "Syria was forced into a humiliating withdrawal from Lebanon in 2005.

    What followed was a deft campaign by Syria of ruthless political violence, mobilization of proxies, intimidation and burgeoning alliance with Iran which has led, five years later, to a resurgence by the regime, riding high for the last two years. Assad did not accept what looked like the verdict of history in 2004/5. There is no reason to suppose he will meekly do so now."

    "The “toolbox” the Syrian regime utilized in the 2005-8 period served it well. It still possesses it. This same box of tricks is the common property of the various members of the Iran-led Muqawama (resistance) bloc in the region, which includes the Hamas enclave in Gaza, Hezbollah’s Lebanon and Iran itself.

    Recent events suggest that this set of options is currently being utilized by various members of this bloc to telling effect. Its members believe these methods will not only succeed in insulating them from any internal fallout from the Arab spring, but will also enable them to press forward, making gains from enemies weakened by the internal dissent.

    The Iranian hyperactivity of recent weeks fits this pattern – the weapons ships, the convoys in Sudan, the arms-laden planes intercepted on their way to Syria.

    Hamas, too, appears to want to change the subject of the conversation in Gaza by provoking a new fight with Israel.

    This is the camp of which Assad is a part. These are its methods.

    There has even been speculation on Arabic websites regarding a possible Syrian angle to the bombing in Jerusalem. Islamic Jihad and the smaller secular terror groups are domiciled in Damascus, after all. And Syria, too, has an interest right now in changing the subject of regional focus."


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