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The most dangerous place in the world

On the eve of his visit to South Asia in March 2000, American President Bill Clinton referred to the Line of Control (LoC) in Kashmir as “the most dangerous place in the world”.
This was not an exaggeration but recognition of the fact that the Kashmir dispute, made even more volatile by the popular Kashmiri uprising against the Indian occupation, could escalate into war between two nuclear weapon states.The recent Pulwama incident has once again raised the spectre of war between Pakistan and India which can, either through intention or accident, lead to the use of nuclear weapons.Therefore, Kashmir still remains the most dangerous place in the world and it is incumbent on all sides to act responsibly in order to avoid Armageddon.The Pulwama attack in which more than 40 Indian paramilitary troops were killed by a young Kashmiri, Adil Ahmad Dar, who had been tortured by Indian forces  should not come as a surprise.For more than seven decades, India has resorted to brute force to put down the Kashmiri struggle for self-determination.
Indian failure is not just due to the brave resilience of the Kashmiri people but also due to the escalating levels of Indian brutality that has made the Kashmiri resolve even stronger.Despite the presence of more than 700,000 Indian troops armed with draconian powers, nearly 90,000 casualties, use of indiscriminate killings, torture, rape, illegal detentions, and disappearances as instruments of policy, India has failed to intimidate the Kashmiris.
Now, an entirely new generation has taken up the struggle, including children in their teens. Even they have not been spared from the cowardly Indian use of indiscriminate firepower including pellet guns that have blinded and maimed hundreds of them.No wonder Kashmiri youth like Dar are ready to sacrifice their lives to exact revenge on their tormentors.All Indian governments since 1947 have refused to recognise the reality that Kashmiris do not want to be a part of India.
Instead they have blamed Pakistan for promoting “terrorism” in Kashmir.The Modi government of Hindu chauvinists and extremists has taken this repressive charade to an even lower level  seeking a Nazi-type fascist solution in Kashmir by settlement of Hindus in the Muslim majority valley to change its demographic character.Viewed from this perspective, the Indian allegations of Pakistan-sponsored terrorism in occupied Kashmir are hollow. The Kashmiris are fighting for themselves and do not need persuasion from Pakistan.
Some Indian political and military leaders now acknowledge this fact.In terms of international legal norms, the UN Charter and several UN resolutions recognise not only the legitimacy of the struggle of peoples under foreign occupation and alien domination to wage an armed struggle for their freedom and realisation of the right of self-determination, as is the case of the Kashmiris, but also draw a clear distinction between terrorism and the legitimate struggle for self-determination.
Therefore, the Kashmiris are not engaged in terrorism but a legitimate struggle for their inalienable right to self-determination.Unfortunately, however, in the realm of realpolitik, international law and principles are only relevant when they suit the powerful — as in East Timor or South Sudan, but not Kashmir or Palestine.
After 9/11, America’s war on terror has essentially targeted all Muslims as terrorists even if they are involved in a just and legitimate struggle under international law.India was quick to seize this opportunity by fully aligning with the US and Israel to project Muslims as terrorists, including of course the Kashmiris.
False flag operations carried out by Indian security forces and ‘Sarkari’ militants have been blamed on the Kashmiris and Pakistan.The Americans, instead of determining the truth, are just happy to have India join them in the fight against ‘Islamist terrorism’.

Today, this is even truer of Trump and his crowd of bigoted anti-Muslims who have found a fellow fascist in Modi. No wonder Trump says he is “a great fan of Hindu”.This has added to the prevailing dangers of an Indo-Pakistan conflict. Modi and his Hindutva cohorts, who have already created mass hysteria against Pakistan and Kashmiris, are now braying for blood to avenge the Pulwama attack.Forthcoming Indian elections make Modi even more desperate to be seen as being muscular.Apart from threatening to ‘isolate’ Pakistan and withdrawing the MFN status, military options are being explored.American support for Indian allegations against Pakistan could make India even more adventurous in its actions.Despite all this Indian bravado, it will have to be cold hard logic that will determine Indian response.‘Isolating’ Pakistan has already been tried and failed.Withdrawal of the MFN status is meaningless given the low volume of bilateral trade, and in any case Indian non-tariff barriers have already stunted Pakistani exports to India.While sponsoring terrorist attacks is possible, any ‘surgical strike’, like the last one, would be more of a sham.Heavy artillery or air strikes are also possible.Then there is the much-hyped ‘Cold Start’ type limited military operations option. But the Indians are fully aware of Pakistan’s Full Spectrum deterrence doctrine and it remains to be seen whether they will risk testing it.

Prime Minister Imran Khan has already assured them that Pakistan will surely respond. Significantly, former Indian generals like General DS Hooda, former head of the Northern Command, and in whose tenure the so-called surgical strike was carried out, has suggested caution and hoped for ‘rethinking and reconciliation’ from all sides.Owing to these factors, the only realistic option for India is to seek a sustainable solution to the Kashmir dispute through dialogue with Pakistan and the Kashmiris.As their American allies have learned in Afghanistan, there is no military solution to such problems.
Only then can Kashmir cease to be the most dangerous place in the world.

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SpaceX Rocket Launches 1st Private Moon Lander for Israel

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – Israel's first space mission is on its way to the moon! A used SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket successfully launched an Israeli moon lander along with an Indonesian communications satellite from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in …

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Fighting in the Trenches of This Culture War

Fighting in the Trenches of This Culture War, Our authors generally oppose cultural and moral relativism, and for that reason they are generally February 21, 2019 Howard Rotberg For over 15 years, I have been operating a small publishing house, which is Canada’s sole conservative and pro-Israel publishing house.
We publish some of the greatest Canadian, American and international authors who support fundamental freedoms, liberty, justice and individual rights as opposed to group rights. Our authors generally oppose cultural and moral relativism, and for that reason they are generally shunned by leftist publishing houses who naively believe that all cultures are equal.
I am the son of a Holocaust survivor who lost his parents and then eight-year-old sister in the gas chambers of Auschwitz. When someone tells me that all cultures are equal, I ask if the person believes that the culture of Nazi Germany or of ISIS is equal to the culture of Canada or the United States.The person usually walks away at that point. Recently, as part of my publishing duties and the need to see if there are any upcoming opportunities for our authors to speak, I came across an event near Toronto called the Festival of Literary Diversity.Looking at the photographs of the 20 or so authors speaking or appearing, I could see that almost all were brown or black and they were mostly women. Mantua Books also publishes brown women (Farzana Hassan, The Case Against Jihad), brown men (Professor Salim Mansur, Delectable Lie: a liberal repudiation of multiculturalism and Islamism and the Qur’an Problem), as well as white Jewish women, aged Christian men, gay Jewish men, all what we might term “conservative” thinkers, but who are actually “classically liberal” as much as conservative.
So, I decided to write to the Festival organizers to see if their definition of “marginalized diverse authors” could include our authors, most with Ph.Ds, who are shunned by mainstream leftist publishing houses despite their qualifications to write in their chosen fields on politics and culture.It occurred to me that readers might like to peer into the trench, where I, a 6 7-year-old, former practicing lawyer, a developer of affordable rental housing for low income working people (which I insist gives me “progressive” credibility) am fighting in this war every week. Of course, we are losing most every battle we fight.It is hard when academia, the mainstream media, and NGOs and government bureaucrats are all lined up against you. But I fight on; if my father could survive Auschwitz, I figure I can survive this.So what follows is my correspondence with a Festival organizer, to give you some insight into one small, polite skirmish in a much larger War. From Howard Rotberg to A.L.: Re: Festival of Literary Diversity, in Brampton We are a small publisher, based in Brantford/Hamilton, in business for over 15 years, publishing great authors, most with Ph.Ds, most of whom have been shunned by mainstream, leftist-oriented publishing houses, because of the authors conservative (or classically liberal) political beliefs. We have white and brown authors, Christian, Muslim and Jewish authors, who write about ideologies and values in contemporary political culture.Our authors are experts in their field, and are professors, journalists and others living in Canada or around the world. Please refer to our website, www.mantuabooks.com.Our writers are usually opposed to cultural and moral relativism and political correctness that inhibits freedom of expression or that caters to group rights as opposed to individual human rights and maintenance of our liberal democratic justice system. We are opposed to naïve advocacy of multiculturalism based on the mistaken belief that all cultures are equal.
We believe that cultures that oppress women, gays/lesbians, children, ethnic and religious minorities are not equal to those that uphold the rights of same. Despite the quality of our writers, we are routinely marginalized by mainstream media who often refuse to review our authors’ works because, notwithstanding our great conservative tradition in Canada, these media feel that they want to publish or write about left-leaning authors not conservative ones, and so we are shunned and marginalized.We think that a Festival of Literary Diversity should embrace a diversity of all books as long as they meet the requisite standards of intellectual discussion and our Canadian traditional values of liberty, justice and “peace, order and good government. Let us know if you want the publisher or some of the authors to participate in a festival of diversity that is in fact diverse,From A.L.to Howard Rotberg: Thank you for this. I appreciate and understand where you are coming from.We also do not support the views of people and movements who disenfranchise marginalized groups, but we cannot approach this from a perspective of viewing other cultures as inferior to Western democracies, regardless of whether we agree with their practices or not. As such, we celebrate the rights, complexities and humanity inherent in all cultures, understand that growth comes from meeting one another on common ground, and seek to elevate discussions where cross-cultural dialogues are respectful, mindful, and encourage us all to learn.
Many thanks, and all the best to you in your continued work. From Howard Rotberg to A.L.: Thank you for your polite and considered response.
I simply want to point out to you that I work with marginalized authors who are marginalized by leftist media. Words like “diverse” or “marginalized” are highly politicized terms useful for attaining power or reducing power of those with whom one disagrees with politically.The fact that you cannot bring yourself to state the obvious – that some cultures like that of Nazi Germany or of ISIS – are culturally inferior, tells me, the son of a Holocaust survivor, that the effect of your sincere efforts is to dignify cultures that abuse women and gays and religious minorities; surely you would be hard-pressed to make the argument, say, to Yezedi women, victims of the evil culture of Syria which includes a culture of rape. I disagree that there is “humanity” in all cultures.Nazi Germany and ISIS are the opposites of humanity. Finally, it sounds nice to say that we should be “respectful” in all discussions.But, in my book, The Ideological Path to Submission and what we can do about it, I point out that “the Oxford Dictionary defines “respect” as “a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities or achievements.” But to me, Islamists who use beheading, rape and sexual assault, torture, persecution of ethnic and religious minorities and gays, and disregard most human rights, do not deserve our “deep admiration” and do not show any great “qualities or achievements.” We must be clear on this. “I am really confused about the notion of ‘meeting on common ground.’ If there were such a viable concept/place as ‘common ground,’ then can it be defined? If not, then where in the rich spectrum of values and ideas is there a common platform for our minds to meet? Why should there be a common ‘safe place’ when people disagree about significant basic ideas which are diametrically opposed to western values which have made modern western civilization the best place on earth to be living?” I would recommend that you read Professor Salim Mansur’s Delectable Lie: a liberal repudiation of multiculturalism, Diane Weber Bederman’s Back to the Ethic: Reclaiming Western Values, and my own, The Ideological Path to Submission. and what we can do about it.About Howard Rotberg Howard Rotberg is a Canadian writer, businessman and publisher. He is the author of The Second Catastrophe: A Novel about a Book and its Author, TOLERism: The Ideology Revealed, and Exploring Vancouverism: The Political Culture of Canada’s Lotus Land.He is President of Mantua Books.Read MoreView the discussion thread.

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Ex-Mossad Chief Secretly Visited Saudi Arabia in 2014 – Israeli Channel 13

The former leader of Israel’s intelligence agency Mossad visited Saudi Arabia in secret in 2014, in an effort to rally support against Iranian influence, Israel’s Channel 13 News revealed on Tuesday evening.The dispatch is the latest to come from a report on covert efforts between Israel and the Gulf countries to normalise security and diplomatic ties over recent years, as Tel Aviv presses for open ties with its Gulf allies at a Middle East summit in Warsaw today.
The report revealed that the then-chief of Mossad, Tamir Pardo, made a behind-the-scenes visit to the Saudi capital where he met with Prince Bandar bin Sultan, King Abdullah’s special envoy to discuss the Iranian issue shortly after the nuclear deal was signed between Iran and the major powers, bringing to end the sanctions that had crippled the Islamic Republic for decades.The meeting was unprecedented due to the fact that until that point, Saudi officials had only met with Israeli officials in a third country, refusing to host them themselves.The report, quoting unidentified Western diplomats, said that by the end of 2013, following the signing of the interim nuclear deal, there was a major breakthrough in relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia.The report comes as Netanyahu suggested at an anti-Iran summit in Warsaw on Wednesday that he would make public Israel’s covert normalisation of ties with many Gulf states.With the exception of Egypt and Jordan, who have signed treaties with Israel, no other Arab state has official direct relations with Tel Aviv. However a series of under-the-table deals and alliances are gradually being unearthed.
The ultra-conservative kingdom, concerned about international rapprochement with its regional nemesis, reportedly decided to ally with Israel, who is equally opposed to any move that will enable the strengthening of Iranian influence.Israel and Iran consider each other their primary enemy, while Saudi Arabia and Iran compete for influence in the wider region.Bandar bin Sultan is believed to have developed the sharing of Saudi and Israeli intelligence during his tenure as director general of the Saudi Intelligence Agency from 2012 to 2014, before he became King Abdullah’s envoy and adviser.These ties have accelerated since Mohammed bin Salman became crown prince and de facto ruler, as he has also been developing an anti-Iranian front to include Hizballah and Lebanon.
Channel 13’s report also reveals how a Saudi proposal to lead peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians amid the 2014 Gaza War was rejected by Netanyahu, to the Saudis’ bitter dismay.The report comes as the Saudi monarch reaffirmed his support for a future Palestinian state.Meeting with the President of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday, King Salman said his country “permanently stands by Palestine and its people’s right to an independent state with east Jerusalem as its capital”, reported the official Saudi Press Agency.The pledge comes as the United States is expected to offer hints of its proposals for peace between Israel and the Palestinians at a conference on Wednesday in Warsaw, Poland.

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