Posts Tagged ‘Sorcery’

Secular Talk: Horrified Ambassador’s Email Describes Destruction of Iraq under Allied Occupation

March 6, 2016

This is another grim, compelling piece of reporting from Secular Talk. Kyle Kulinski here discusses an email from 2010 to Hillary Clinton that has just been released. It’s from a former ambassador, Joe Wilson, who visited the country after the western invasion. He vividly describes his horror at the immense damage done to Iraq and its people, and the vicious racism of the occupying American soldiers.

Wilson states he was left ‘slack-jawed’ during his visit to Baghdad at the way an historical vibrant city has been ‘bled to death’. He compared it to Berlin and Dresden during the Second World War, but states that even these cities were not subject of seven years of occupation, during which time they were the victims of ethnic cleansing, religious segregation, and brutalisation by the regular army and ‘private military contractors’. That’s mercenaries, to you and me. He believed that Gaza was suffering from similar dehumanizing effects. He stated that the fabric of Iraqi urban society had been destroyed through the walling-off of whole neighbourhoods.

He also stated that the troops were not keen to help the Iraqis help themselves. He looked for a souvenir he could bring back to his son as a memento of his stay in the country, but could not find one that was suitable. All the T-shirts were either racist or ‘horribly bellicose’. There were shirts showing mushroom clouds and the slogan, ‘temperature 38,000 degrees, and partly cloudy’. Other T-shirts referred to the Arabs as ‘camel jockeys’, but this was the least offensive. The service personnel, he stated, do not see themselves as there to bring peace, light, joy or even democracy to Iraq. ‘They are there to kill the camel jockeys’.

Kulinski notes how George Dubya moved the goalposts after America invaded Iraq, and people found out that his line that Saddam Hussein was responsible for 9/11 was a lie. Then Dubya told the country that he had weapons of mass destruction that he was prepared to use. That was also a lie. He didn’t have WMDs, and wouldn’t have used them on America anyway, as this would have resulted in the total destruction of his country. And when that lie crumbled, Bush and his cronies stated that he had to go, because he was a bad guy. So were many other governments, including America itself, that were not subject to regime change. Among the bad guys America is currently allied with are the Saudi royal family, who kill people for drug smuggling, sorcery and witchcraft, and are killing and massacring civilians in Yemen. Then Bush and the others tried to justify the invasion with the pretext that they were there to bring the country democracy. Wilson’s email gives the lie to that too. America is not there to bring democracy. The west is there to occupy, dehumanise and kill its people, and steal their oil.

Kulinski states that he’s embarrassed by all this as an American. He does not want his country to be remembered for this. He states that this in no way represents all Americans. It is the product of the worst parts of American government – the Neo-Cons – and the military-industrial complex, which is concerned with profit over all else. He asks, ‘how can we – how can anyone vote for anyone, who was ever okay with this war?’

Vox Political: Saudis Want Britain to Respect them for Executions, Because it’s the Law

January 16, 2016

Mike over at Vox Political has a report from the Independent, reporting that Adel al-Jubair, Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister, has given a press conference recognising that the kingdom has an image problem over its use of the death penalty. They criticise the West for its outrage over this, saying that their use of the death penalty should be respected because ‘it’s the law’. They also state that they don’t disrespect us for not having the death penalty’.

See Mike’s article at: http://voxpoliticalonline.com/2016/01/16/saudi-arabias-foreign-affairs-minister-urges-britain-to-respect-the-kingdoms-use-of-the-death-penalty/

Way back on 26th August 2014, The Young Turks did an item on their show commenting on the Saudi use of the death penalty. After first discussing ISIS’ beheading of a suspected informer, they remarked on how Daesh weren’t alone. Saudi Arabia also inflicted the death penalty. That month the state had executed 23 people, often for minor or trivial offences. Four men from the same family were killed for importing marijuana. Another man was executed because he practised ‘black magic sorcery’. And another man, who was mentally ill and suffered from auditory hallucinations, was also killed for drugs offences.

It’s unclear whether any of these people were actually guilty. It is common practice in Saudi Arabia to force confessions from the accused. In the case of the mentally ill man, the son states that it was he, who actually did the crime. He has been sentenced to 11 years or so and something like 1,000 lashes. When the family members complained to Amnesty International, they were threatened by the authorities.

The Turks’ quote Said Boumaha, Amnesty International’s deputy director in the Middle East, on the illegality of most executions, which take place far beyond the actual remit of the law. Saudi Arabia is one of the leading practitioners of the death penalty. It is the fourth on the list of countries with the most use of the death penalty. No. 3 was Iraq in 2012, #2 was Iran, and no. 1 was China. America was no. 5. They condemn the various miscarriages of justice which have sent innocent people to the chair or the gas chamber in America, including cases where the mentally subnormal have been killed. The Turks state that it is hypocritical for America to condemn atrocities committed by Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria, while refusing to condemn the Saudis for their use of the death penalty.

Here’s the video.

It isn’t just the use of the death penalty in Saudi Arabia, which appals and offends. Most Brits would probably vote to reinstate the death penalty if they could. This would be a mistake. There have been too many miscarriages of justice to ensure that it would only be the guilty, who would meet the hangman. Exonerating a person after their death does not bring them back, nor is it much comfort to their bereaved. As for it being a deterrent, Pierrepoint, Britain’s last hangman, stated that in his experience it had no deterrent value whatsoever. It was merely a state sanctioned form of revenge. He later changed his mind shortly before his death, but this observation – from the man, who actually did the job, deserves serious consideration.

What is particularly horrific about the death penalty in Saudi Arabia is the medieval brutality of the executions. In the West since the Enlightenment, it’s been intended to be quick and painless. Hence the limitation of the methods of execution to hanging, electrocution and gassing. These can be horrific enough. There’s a film, starring Michael Caine as a attorney, which contains a scene in which his character explains just how horrific the electric chair can be. There are two electrodes, attached to the heart and the head. The shock from one stops the heart, while the other destroys the brain. If the electrode on the head works, but the other doesn’t, the result is a blubbering vegetable. Other results can include the executed man literally frying, and cases where the liver has shot out of the man’s body through the force of the electric shock.

As for hanging, before the invention in the 19th century of the ‘long drop’ method, which breaks the criminal’s neck, death was by strangulation. This was slow and agonising. Recent films set in the past, which have hanging scenes show the friends and family of the executed man running forward to grab his legs. This is actually historically accurate. They did so in order to put their weight on the man’s body to hasten his death. Other results of the asphyxiation was that the eyes would pop out, along with a tongue that would go black. The reasons why the condemned traditionally wore the black mask was not to save them from the terrible sight of the hangman and his tools in the last moments of their lives. It was to conceal their faces, with the hideous rictus of death, and stop it from scaring the crowds.

Execution in Saudi Arabia may be worse, much worse, than this. Their methods of putting someone to death include crucifixion and beheading. In the latter, the brain may live on several seconds or even moments afterwards, so the victim may well be conscious as their head separates from their body. And scientists have also suggested that it may be accompanied by excruciating pain.

And very little needs to be said about how horrific and barbaric crucifixion is. There’s a reason the Romans used it so much on their enemies: it was the most painful, drawn-out and humiliating form of execution they could devise.The victim dies from slow asphyxiation over hours or, in some cases, days. It was used on Spartacus and his followers, and by the Romans, when they conquered Palestine. According to the Jewish historian Josephus, the Romans put to death 19,000 Pharisees when they suppressed a Jewish revolt.

Given the rampant injustice in its application, and the sheer horrific nature of the means of carrying it out, I see absolutely no reason why anyone should respect the death penalty, whether in Britain, America, Saudi Arabia or anywhere else in the world.