The Shores of Tripoli Run Red With Martyrs’ Blood
The Marine Corps hymn brags of the force’s presence from the “halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli.” But the Marines haven’t been in Tripoli since the early 1800s, when they attacked the Barbary pirates. It doubtful they’ll be going back there any time soon, though those shores of Tripoli are running red today with the blood of hundreds of dead protesters murdered in cold blood by Khadaffi’s hired mercenaries and security forces–at least those who haven’t defected to the opposition or resigned their positions in disgust.
It’s common in the west to look cynically at the fervor for freedom of the peoples of the Middle East. Their yearnings seem so pure, so passionately held. But we know how easily such idealism is turned to cynicism and disgust at the practical compromises made after the walls and dictators fall. Look how hard life is in Russia and eastern Europe after the fall of Communism. We use such excuses at least some of us to look away at the suffering of others. Surely, our political leaders do so for even stronger reasons of preserving the status quo, maintaining U.S. interests in the region. Then of course there is a tendency to view the Middle East as so foreign, so other; it’s just hard to muster empathy for cultures so far from ours physically and emotionally.
But how can we turn away from the selflessness, the pure willingness to look death and the dictator in the face and spit at both. This is an emotion that we ourselves can never know. We have too much in our lives to understand this. We have too much to protect, too much we’re unwilling to lose. But when you read the purity of this statement you know the Libyan opposition must win, and that if they do not it will be our fault as much as Khaddafi’s:
Libyans from other cities — Benghazi and Misrata — were reported to be heading to Tripoli to join the battle against the government forces, said Mansour O. El-Kikhia, a professor of Middle East studies at the University of Texas, Austin, who had talked to people inside the country.
“There are dead on the streets, you cannot even pick them up,” he said by e-mail. “The army is just shooting at everybody. That has not deterred the people from continuing.”
Though the outcome of the battle is impossible to determine, some protesters said the bloodshed in Tripoli only redoubled their determination.
“He will never let go of his power,” said one, Abdel Rahman. “This is a dictator, an emperor. He will die before he gives an inch. But we are no longer afraid. We are ready to die after what we have seen.”
There is talk of creating a no-fly zone over Libya which would prevent the regime from mowing down its own citizens by the hundreds as it did today. This would mean that European powers would be called upon to shoot down Libyan planes if they attempted to operate in their own airspace. The idea of such a no-fly zone has not been seen since the days of Saddam Hussein and the U.S. invasion of Iraq. But it seems fitting that Saddam and Khaddafi would earn the same treatment and penalty.
We must not allow the dictator to commit mass murder against his own people. We must help the people to achieve what they have set out to do, to rid themselves of tyranny.
Yes, certainly we don’t know what will follow. We don’t know if we will like the leaders who replace him. It’s a volatile neck of the woods, after all. But the Middle East has seen the fall of two noxious dictators who fled with comparatively little bloodshed. Autocrats in Yemen and Bahrain remain under threat. We must not let the remaining entrenched power elites learn the lesson that they can retain their prerogatives through spilling rivers of their fellow countrymen’s blood. It may be that like in Egypt, the Libyans are perfectly able to take care of business and do not need outside help. That would be the best scenario. But in Egypt, the regime didn’t resort to wholesale murder. In Libya it has. The Bible says: “Thou shalt not stand idly by.”
Barack Obama is very good at standing idly by. I hope he doesn’t follow past example in this crisis.
The other nation that benefits indirectly from such mass violence is Israel. Arabs spilling Arab blood is a perfect foil for the Likudist Mideast narrative: the Arabs are a bloodthirsty, violent lot. They only understand violence. Life is cheap for them. We Israelis are the lone western bastion in the region. We uphold the values of western civilization here on the west’s behalf. Therefore, allow us to right to do things as we see fit to retain some semblance of western values and civilization in the face of the Arab onslaught. If we do not maintain our own security through continuing the Occupation, and being strong in the face of the Arab threat, then we Israelis will end up like the Libyan protestors.
It’s not a very convincing argument to anyone who knows the region and its history. But it is an argument that resonates with many Israelis and their advocates in the Diaspora.
19 thoughts on “The Shores of Tripoli Run Red With Martyrs’ Blood – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم”
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On the weekend edition of Erutz 2 they showed Sheikh Yusuf Qardawui’s speech in takhrir square.
He speaks about conquering El-Aktza mosque; I have no idea what you know about the guy
But he was expelled from Egypt under the orders of Mubaraq for being an (extremist) and returned after 30 years in exile last Friday the 18th directly to Takhrir Square (some similarity to Hummeini does exist, though we need to wait and see how it is going to play out.)
If what is left from this revolution is a speech of Sheikh Yusuf Qardawui then this is not a good sign first for Egyptians, and second to the region including us Israelis.
http://www.mako.co.il/news-channel2/Friday-Newscast/Article-433eee5d94a3e21004.htm (time marker 2:41)
“I have no idea what you know about this guy. But he was expelled from Egypt under the orders of Mubarak for being an (extremist)”
I have no idea what you know about al-Qaradawi but I guess NOTHING.
He left Egypt in 1961 – twenty years before Mubarak came into power. Al-Qaradawi was imprisoned on various occasions during the 50’s (Nasser’s reign, not really known for his fondness of Communists and al-Ikhwan) for being a member of the Muslim Brotherhood. He’s been a Qatari national since the 70’s.
He’s a liberal and a humanist compared to Ovadia Yossef.
By the way, he has three daughters with doctorates from British universities, one of them an internationally known nuclear scientist.
“…this is not a good sign FIRST for Egyptians, and second to the region including us Israelis”.
What hypocrisy. We all know that you’re not “first” thinking about the Egyptians, but ONLY Israel. And stop pretending knowing anything about what’s good for the Egyptians and ‘the region’.
Yasin, arguing with you is getting really old really fast, especially because you have no idea, what’s left and what’s right
for you, from wikipedia:
“Some of al-Qaradawi’s views have been controversial in the West, and he is banned from entering the United States and Great Britain. In 2004, 2,500 Muslim academics from Saudi Arabia, Iraq and from the Palestinian territories condemned Qaradawi, and accused him of giving “Islam a bad name.””
“After the Egyptian Revolution of 2011 Qaradawi returned after 3 decades of exile. ”
shall we go on ?
and yes he is the last thing the Egyptian youth needs, he will manipulate them and similar to another human rights activists humeyni (R.I.P) who created the guardian consul and gave them the power to veto any un-Islamic legislation
same will happened in Egypt. wanna bet ?
“You have no idea what’s left and what’s right”
Fortunately, you’re here to guide me, and luckily, you have ‘wiki’ so you can read some basic facts (such as spelling his name correctly) between your first and your second comment on al-Qaradawi.
To quote from your ‘wiki’: “Al-Qaradawi left Egypt for Qatar in 1961” and people who don’t only stick to ‘wiki’ know that Nasser stripped him off his Egyptian nationality. I don’t see ‘expelled by Mubarak’ anywhere – he was already living abroad. He has been a member of al-Azhar’s Islamic Research Center for years.
After your quote on his banning from the US and the UK (Tarek Ramadan was banned from the US for years – not really a proof of anything) you should have continued:
“al-Qaradawi was a trustee of the Oxford University Center for Islamic Studies”, and there an article from the Guardian:
I’m not a fan of al-Qaradawi or any other religious scholar, but he’s not an extremist as you pretend. And ‘wiki’ is not a reliable source on such an issue particularly when you’re one-sided in your reading (I notice that MEMRI is mentionned, as always when it comes to ‘Muslim extremism’).
Once again, you have no idea about what Egypt needs, you just know what’s good for Israel and you project that on Egypt. As with your Palestinian workers, you have a paternalistic attitude to Egyptians. Why do you think al-Qaradawi will ‘manipulate’ them ? You don’t think they’re capable of thinking by themselves ? If they vote for al-Qaradawi or any other candidate, that’s their right and they will certainly vote according to their convictions. I guess the fascists present in the Knesset got there by ‘manipulation’ too.
I have no idea what you’re trying to express in your last sentence, but I guess ‘humeini’ is Khomeini, and that you read the comparison between Khomeini and al-Qaradawi made by Rubin of the Jerusalem Post on your ‘wiki’-source. I’m afraid that you have to go further than reading ‘wiki’ if you want to understand the Arab world.
PS. El-Aktza sounds like the name of a Jewish settlement in the West Bank. If you’re talking about the mosque, it’s al-Aqsa.
They actually kind of did. A cunning use of faux nationalism by Lieberman to trap more of the hopeless Israeli horde in his web.
Let us quote from the Shaikh own statements during the MAYA (Muslim Arab Youth Association) conference in Toledo Ohio (1995), and let the readers decide if he is an extremist or liberal.
“Our brothers in Hamas, in Palestine, the
Islamic resistance, the Islamic Jihad, after all the rest have given up and despaired, the movement of the Jihad brings us back to our faith.”
What remains, then, is to conquer Rome. The second part of the omen. “The city of Hiraq [once emperor of Constantinople] will be conquered first,” so what remains is to conquer Rome. This means that Islam will come back to
Europe for the third time, after it was expelled from it twice. Conquest through Da’wa [proselytizing], that is what we hope for. We will conquer Europe, we will conquer America! Not through sword but through Da’wa.
But the balance of power will change, and this is what is told in the Hadith of Ibn-Omar and the Hadith of Abu-Hurairah: “You shall continue to fight the Jews and they will fight you, until the Muslims will kill them. And the Jew will hide behind the stone and the tree, and the stone and the tree will say: ‘Oh servant of Allah, Oh Muslim, this is a Jew behind me. Come and kill him!’ The resurrection will not come before this happens.” This is a text
from the good omens in which we believe.
quoted from Steven Emerson statement prepared for the Senate Committee Hearing on Extremism.
i guess that from reading that one can conclude that the honorable shaikh see a future in which Muslims would assimilate to the population in those western countries who’s way of life they so admire in which they seek better personal life , a real Mama Terza this Shaikh is. i guess it was the jewish lobby and not his own statements and believes that granted him a persona non grate status in the US and GB and other places right ?
and look at this… what an insignificant dude named David Cameron stated about the shaikh in 2008 :
Conservative leader David Cameron has called for a ban on “preachers of hate” entering the United Kingdom.
isn’t it the same David Cameron who stated that multi-culture had failed in England ? didn’t Angela Markel stated the same ? didn’t your own president Sarkozy stated the same (in his case he is jewish it doesn’t count, i know) i wonder why so ? can it have anything to do with the Shaikh speech and believes from which i quoted above ?
about time, we will call a spade a spade and not a human right activist.
as for the rest of your nonsense, after the Sadat assassination, the Mubarak regime told the shaikh that it is better for him to stay where he was and denied his return to Egypt, what do you think that by coincidence he “decided” to return a week after Mubarak resigned ?
if you think that’s what the Egyptian youth needs, that these are the values they should seek ? wow.
and let us end this discussion with another quote from the shaikh this time about wife beating:
” The Daily Telegraph writes that al-Qaradawi, in his book The Lawful and Prohibited in Islam, states that wife beating is permissible after the failure of all other means of persuasion. In such circumstances, a husband may beat his wife “lightly with his hands, avoiding her face and other sensitive areas.”
go get the book, i am sure it is a best seller.
I’m putting an end to this nonsense now. YOU introduced the Muslim cleric into the thread when neither I nor anyone else did. The fact that he’s now in Egypt means nothing as to any future role he may or may not play in Egyptian politics. The guy is 86, I think. Get off it.
Your mouthing the line of Dore Gold and all the other Israeli neo-con anti-jihadis about the deadly danger posed by people like him. When there’s no proof at all of any political role that he will play.
Finally, this subject is OFF-TOPIC. Stay on topic. Comment about individuals and subjects that are the subjects of my posts & don’t go on anti-jihadi fishing expeditions.
“Let’s quote from the Sheik’s own statement …and let the readers decide whether he’s an extremist or not”
What’s great about the net is that you can find whatever you want to confirm your statements: this, that and the contrary.
I don’t think anybody here would judge al-Qaradawi who’s got 50 years of intellectual production, or anybody else for that sake based on some selective posting.
Al-Qaradawi is a complex intellectual figure, but I guess ‘complex’ is the last thing you’re looking for. You rather prefer superficial selective quotes from ‘wikipedia’, and that’s why I consider you a propagandist.
I could pick from your own source:
“Al-Qaradawi has written about the danger of extremist groups in Islam”, “Al-Qaradawi has strongly pressed for dialogue with Non-Muslims …”, “relations between Muslims and Jews only became strained with the emergence of Zionism and Israel”, “Al-Qaradawi has spoken in favor of religious liberties …those include the right for anyone to change religion…”.
As I said: not worse than hundreds of Rabbis in Israel. As far as his political standpoint on Palestine is concerned, and his justification for the armed struggle against the occupation, it’s nothing compared to Rabbis celebrating Cast Lead or whatever massacre Israel has executed in the region.
PS. I’m not a French national so Sarkozy is not my president, and I would never vote for this kind of mafioso. And I didn’t know he’s a Jew. Did you decide that ? His maternal grandfather was a Jew from Saloniki, converted to Catholicism, and his maternal grandmother a French Catholic. His father is Hungarian (non-Jewish). He always refers to himself as a Catholic. Having Jewish origins – among others – don’t make you a Jew if you don’t consider yourself so, at least not where I live. In Israel, I don’t know.
PPS. I guess “Mama Terza” is Mother Teresa ? Do you have problems with ‘foreign’ names ??
You know about Sarkozi as much as you know about Kardawi i guess. and please provide some links to your claims about the Israeli Rabbis, and please be genuine enough to refer to a main stream figure as el-kardawi is one according to your own statement.
Sarkozy’s sympathy and understanding is most probably a product of his upbringing. It is well known that Sarkozy’s mother was born to the Mallah family, one of the oldest Jewish families of Salonika, Greece. Yet it remains to be seen whether his personal history will affect his foreign policy and France’s role in the Middle East conflict.
In the 15th century, the Mallah family (Hebrew for messenger or angel) escaped the Spanish Inquisition to Provence, France, and moved about 100 years later to Salonika. In Greece, several family members became prominent Zionist leaders, active in the local and national political, economic, social and cultural life.
In 1917, a great fire destroyed parts of Salonika and damaged the Mallah family estate. Many Jewish-owned properties, including the Mallah’s, were expropriated by the Greek government. The Jewish population emigrated from Greece and much of the Mallah family left Salonika for France, America and Israel.
Sarkozy’s grandfather, Aron Mallah, nicknamed Benkio, immigrated to France, where he converted to Catholicism and changed his name to Benedict in order to marry a French Christian girl named Adele Bouvier.
Although Benedict integrated fully into French society, he remained close to his Jewish family and culture. Knowing he was still considered Jewish by blood, he hid his family in the village of Marcillac la Croisille in western France during World War II.
During the Holocaust, many of the Mallahs who stayed in Salonika or moved to France were deported to concentration and extermination camps. In total, 57 family members were murdered by the Nazis. Testimonies reveal that several revolted against the Nazis.
This will be my last comment to you, and I do apologize to Richard for this long ‘dialogue de sourd’ (deaf). Hopefully you didn’t read it all.
“Please be genouine enough to refer to a main stream figure as el-kardawi is one according to your own statement”
I have absolutely NO idea what this means in English.
You finally managed to write his name correctly, and now you switch to el-kardawi, another version. You DO have a problem.
You state that Sarkozy is a Jew, and I say no. Once again, and try to read it twice or ask someone to read aloud: His maternal grandfather was a Jew converted to Catholicism, his maternal grandmother a French Catholic. His father a non-Jewish Hungarian. Sarkozy himself claim he’s a Catholic, and if you still insist that he’s a Jew in spite of his self-identification as a Catholic, then you’re probably applying the Nürnberg Laws !
Your long copy-paste comment on the life of the Mallah-family says nothing else than what I wrote, but do you even understand your own copy/paste ?? Most of it has absolutely nothing to do with Sarkozy being a Jew or not. You just jump around as a mad bull in the arena.
Sarkozy is without any doubt the most pro-Israeli president France ever had, but whether this has anything to do with the history of his family, I’ll leave to you , the-specialist-of-all-things, to judge. As we say where I grew up: “You’re so brilliant, you could live without a brain.”
Richard, calling me neocon ? funny.
i am no neocon, i just know that i live in dangerous neighborhood, and though i believe an agreement should be reached with the Palestinians, and though i believe there are many wrong doings towards them, i refuse close my eyes shut.
look at this for example https://www.richardsilverstein.com/2009/10/07/libya-forces-un-security-council-to-take-up-goldstone-report/
less then two years ago, you were signing a different tune regarding Gaddafi, ignoring his reputation and actions. and applauding him for being on the Human Rights sides pushing goldstone, do you now see things in the same light ?
or look at this article written by Gidon Levi from haaretz (it is stated in the comments that he wrote the article), written after the Arab MK’s visit to libya stating that Israel should pursue a relationship with another Moderate arab state (Hebrew only sorry – http://www.haaretz.co.il/hasite/spages/1166451.html)
i am no neocon or on any anti jihad fishing expedition. there is a famous phrase in Yiddish: Azoy zibetz azoy zibetsik (behaves at 70 the way he behaved when he was 7) which means history is a great tool to predict the future.
Dore Gold is an Israeli neocon. Read his last book about Jerusalem & you’ll find exactly the same argument refernecing Qardawi there. If you raise the same arguments as Dore Gold then expect to be compared to him and those like him.
I have never applauded Khaddafi and never will.
This arab revolutions are generally a positive thing to happen. But it shows that the West, especially the EU as the next neighbour, was not prepared to what happend. Overthrowing dictators and install a democratic system is only a first step to a better future in political, humanitarian and economic aspects. This will not be easy. They will need a lot of asistance and money. None of the major problems like the unemployment of a huge youth-bulb will disappear only by inverting democracy. But if we find no way to solve this problem in their countries, we will face economic immigration to the EU in uncontrollable numbers. The mediterranean sea is more a link than a border in that aspect. I think, the astonishing silence of the EU politicans
is about the knowledge of the problems and the price to be paid ahead of them/us?
Yesterday night, Kadhafi aka “al-mahboul” (the crazy) showed up on the national Libyan television (20 seconds):
He wanted to reassure his fellow Libyans that he was still in Libya (!), that he would have loved to spend the night with the youngsters in the Green Square, but as it was raining, he would stay home …. and then he called the journalists “dogs”.
Just for the sake of the photo of yesterday’s “Kadhafi-show”:
I just finished seeing his long speech today. The guy is a total freak. And even more disconnected from reality than Mubarak, though he copied him: ‘a foreign conspiracy’, ‘the Islamists would take over’, ‘a civil war’. And the young demonstrators are all ‘doped thugs’, ‘the death penalty would be applied’ ….
And he can’t leave office, he hasn’t any, the Libyan Jamâhiriyya is ruled by the people….
My God, could you stand by the Libyans in the time coming. This is neither Ben Ali nor Mubarak, but a sick person.
I find it tragically, pitiably ironic that he accuses his own people of fomenting a “foreign conspiracy” when guess who brought in the foreign mercenaries to mow down his own “subjects” by the hundreds and thousands?
Only a very sick person would try to use these horrible events to have a dig at Israel. Who else tried to that recently? Oh yeah, that’s right, Gaddafi! Both you and Gaddafi are pedding the anti-Semitic theory that the spilling of Arab blood is good for Israel. You are in good company.
Only a very stupid partisan ideologue would resort to ad hominem argument by calling me sick. Not to mention such pitiable rhetoric violates my comment rules, which you’ll read carefully before commenting here again.
And doesn’t your nickname “Israman” tell us an awful lot about your prejudices?
The most interesting thing about Al-Gaddafi is the Al-Gaddafi International Prize for human rights award, which is delivered yearly.
The Al-Gaddafi International Prize for Human Rights was established in 1988 by Muammar al-Gaddafi who initially granted 10 million US$ to the Swiss-based foundation North-South which awards the prize. According to its website, the prize is awarded to one of the “international personalities, bodies or organizations that have distinctively contributed to rendering an outstanding human service and has achieved great actions in defending human rights, protecting the causes of freedom and supporting peace everywhere in the world”. The sum of the prize money is US$250,000 (in case of several recipients the prize money is shared). The prize has attracted controversy over its selection.
the list of winners is long from Mandela in 1988 to Ardugan in 2010 via Humanist Hugo Chavez and Louis Farrakhan.
there is no clearer evidence of the double standards of the world.
So Gaddafi creates a prize, and this is evidence of the double standards of ‘the world’?