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No doubt about it: 2020—a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad year for freedom—was the culmination of a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad decade for freedom.
Government corruption, tyranny, and abuse coupled with a Big Brother-knows-best mindset and the COVID-19 pandemic propelled us at warp speed towards a full-blown police state in which nationwide lockdowns, egregious surveillance, roadside strip searches, police shootings of unarmed citizens, censorship, retaliatory arrests, the criminalization of lawful activities, warmongering, indefinite detentions, SWAT team raids, asset forfeiture, police brutality, profit-driven prisons, and pay-to-play politicians were accepted as the norm.
Here’s just a small sampling of the laundry list of abuses—cruel, brutal, immoral, unconstitutional and unacceptable—that have been heaped upon us by the government over the past two decades and in the past year, in particular.
The government failed to protect our lives, liberty and happiness. The predators of the police state wreaked havoc on our freedoms, our communities, and our lives. The government didn’t listen to the citizenry, refused to abide by the Constitution, and treated the citizenry as a source of funding and little else. Police officers shot unarmed citizens and their household pets. Government agents—including local police—were armed to the teeth and encouraged to act like soldiers on a battlefield. Bloated government agencies were allowed to fleece taxpayers. Government technicians spied on our emails and phone calls. And government contractors made a killing by waging endless wars abroad.
The American President became more imperial. Although the Constitution invests the President with very specific, limited powers, in recent years, American presidents (Trump, Obama, Bush, Clinton, etc.) claimed the power to completely and almost unilaterally alter the landscape of this country for good or for ill. The powers that have been amassed by each successive president through the negligence of Congress and the courts—powers which add up to a toolbox of terror for an imperial ruler—empower whoever occupies the Oval Office to act as a dictator, above the law and beyond any real accountability. The presidency itself has become an imperial one with permanent powers.
Militarized police became a power unto themselves, 911 calls turned deadly, and traffic stops took a turn for the worse. Lacking in transparency and accountability, protected by the courts and legislators, and rife with misconduct, America’s police forces continued to be a menace to the citizenry and the rule of law. Despite concerns about the government’s steady transformation of local police into a standing military army, local police agencies acquired even more weaponry, training and equipment suited for the battlefield. Police officers were also given free range to pull anyone over for a variety of reasons and subject them to forced cavity searches, forced colonoscopies, forced blood draws, forced breath-alcohol tests, forced DNA extractions, forced eye scans, forced inclusion in biometric databases.
The courts failed to uphold justice. With every ruling handed down, it becomes more apparent that we live in an age of hollow justice, with government courts more concerned with protecting government agents than upholding the rights of “we the people.” This is true at all levels of the judiciary, but especially so in the highest court of the land, the U.S. Supreme Court, which is seemingly more concerned with establishing order and protecting government agents than with upholding the rights enshrined in the Constitution. A review of critical court rulings over the past two decades, including some ominous ones by the U.S. Supreme Court, reveals a startling and steady trend towards pro-police state rulings by an institution concerned more with establishing order and protecting the ruling class and government agents than with upholding the rights enshrined in the Constitution.
COVID-19 allowed the Emergency State to expand its powers. What started out as an apparent effort to prevent a novel coronavirus from sickening the nation (and the world) became yet another means by which world governments (including our own) could expand their powers, abuse their authority, and further oppress their constituents. While COVID-19 took a significant toll on the nation emotionally, physically, and economically, it also allowed the government to trample our rights in the so-called name of national security, with talk of mass testing for COVID-19 antibodies, screening checkpoints, contact tracing, immunity passports, forced vaccinations, snitch tip lines and onerous lockdowns.
The Surveillance State rendered Americans vulnerable to threats from government spies, police, hackers and power failures. Thanks to the government’s ongoing efforts to build massive databases using emerging surveillance, DNA and biometrics technologies, Americans have become sitting ducks for hackers and government spies alike. Billions of people have been affected by data breaches and cyberattacks. On a daily basis, Americans have been made to relinquish the most intimate details of who we are—our biological makeup, our genetic blueprints, and our biometrics (facial characteristics and structure, fingerprints, iris scans, etc.)—in order to navigate an increasingly technologically-enabled world.
America became a red flag nation. Red flag laws, specifically, and pre-crime laws generally push us that much closer towards a suspect society where everyone is potentially guilty of some crime or another and must be preemptively rendered harmless. Where many Americans go wrong is in naively assuming that you have to be doing something illegal or harmful in order to be flagged and targeted for some form of intervention or detention. In fact, all you need to do these days to end up on a government watch list or be subjected to heightened scrutiny is use certain trigger words (like cloud, pork and pirates), surf the internet, communicate using a cell phone, limp or stutter, drive a car, stay at a hotel, attend a political rally, express yourself on social media, appear mentally ill, serve in the military, disagree with a law enforcement official, call in sick to work, purchase materials at a hardware store, take flying or boating lessons, appear suspicious, appear confused or nervous, fidget or whistle or smell bad, be seen in public waving a toy gun or anything remotely resembling a gun (such as a water nozzle or a remote control or a walking cane), stare at a police officer, question government authority, appear to be pro-gun or pro-freedom, or generally live in the United States. Be warned: once you get on such a government watch list—whether it’s a terrorist watch list, a mental health watch list, a dissident watch list, or a red flag gun watch list—there’s no clear-cut way to get off, whether or not you should actually be on there.
The cost of policing the globe drove the nation deeper into debt. America’s war spending has already bankrupted the nation to the tune of more than $20 trillion dollars. Policing the globe and waging endless wars abroad hasn’t made America—or the rest of the world—any safer, but it has made the military industrial complex rich at taxpayer expense. The U.S. military reportedly has more than 1.3 million men and women on active duty, with more than 200,000 of them stationed overseas in nearly every country in the world. Yet America’s military forces aren’t being deployed abroad to protect our freedoms here at home. Rather, they’re being used to guard oil fields, build foreign infrastructure and protect the financial interests of the corporate elite. In fact, the United States military spends about $81 billion a year just to protect oil supplies around the world. This is how a military empire occupies the globe. Meanwhile, America’s infrastructure is falling apart.
Free speech was dealt one knock-out punch after another. Protest laws, free speech zones, bubble zones, trespass zones, anti-bullying legislation, zero tolerance policies, hate crime laws, shadow banning on the Internet, and a host of other legalistic maladies dreamed up by politicians and prosecutors (and championed by those who want to suppress speech with which they might disagree) conspired to corrode our core freedoms, purportedly for our own good. On paper—at least according to the U.S. Constitution—we are technically free to speak. In reality, however, we are only as free to speak as a government official—or corporate entities such as Facebook, Google or YouTube—may allow. The reasons for such censorship varied widely from political correctness, so-called safety concerns and bullying to national security and hate crimes but the end result remained the same: the complete eradication of free speech.
The Deep State took over. The American system of representative government has been overthrown by the Deep State—a.k.a. the police state a.k.a. the military/corporate industrial complex—a profit-driven, militaristic corporate state bent on total control and global domination through the imposition of martial law here at home and by fomenting wars abroad. The “government of the people, by the people, for the people” has perished. In its place is a shadow government, a corporatized, militarized, entrenched bureaucracy that is fully operational and staffed by unelected officials who are, in essence, running the country and calling the shots in Washington DC, no matter who sits in the White House. Mind you, by “government,” I’m not referring to the highly partisan, two-party bureaucracy of the Republicans and Democrats. Rather, I’m referring to “government” with a capital “G,” the entrenched Deep State that is unaffected by elections, unaltered by populist movements, and has set itself beyond the reach of the law. This is the hidden face of a government that has no respect for the freedom of its citizenry. This shadow government, which “operates according to its own compass heading regardless of who is formally in power,” makes a mockery of elections and the entire concept of a representative government.
The takeaway: Everything the founders of this country feared has come to dominate in modern America. “We the people” have been saddled with a government that is no longer friendly to freedom and is working overtime to trample the Constitution underfoot and render the citizenry powerless in the face of the government’s power grabs, corruption and abusive tactics.
So how do you balance the scales of justice at a time when Americans are being tasered, tear-gassed, pepper-sprayed, hit with batons, shot with rubber bullets and real bullets, blasted with sound cannons, detained in cages and kennels, sicced by police dogs, arrested and jailed for challenging the government’s excesses, abuses and power-grabs, and then locked down and stripped of any semblance of personal freedom?
No matter who sits in the White House, politics won’t fix a system that is broken beyond repair.
For that matter, protests and populist movements also haven’t done much to push back against an authoritarian regime that is deaf to our cries, dumb to our troubles, blind to our needs, and accountable to no one.
So how do you not only push back against the government’s bureaucracy, corruption and cruelty but also launch a counterrevolution aimed at reclaiming control over the government using nonviolent means?
You start by changing the rules and engaging in some (nonviolent) guerilla tactics.
Take your cue from the Tenth Amendment and nullify everything the government does that flies in the face of the principles on which this nation was founded. If there is any means left to us for thwarting the government in its relentless march towards outright dictatorship, it may rest with the power of juries and local governments to invalidate governmental laws, tactics and policies that are illegitimate, egregious or blatantly unconstitutional.
In an age in which government officials accused of wrongdoing—police officers, elected officials, etc.—are treated with general leniency, while the average citizen is prosecuted to the full extent of the law, nullification is a powerful reminder that, as the Constitution tells us, “we the people” are the government.
For too long we’ve allowed our so-called “representatives” to call the shots. Now it’s time to restore the citizenry to their rightful place in the republic: as the masters, not the servants.
Nullification is one way of doing so.
America was meant to be primarily a system of local governments, which is a far cry from the colossal federal bureaucracy we have today. Yet if our freedoms are to be restored, understanding what is transpiring practically in your own backyard—in one’s home, neighborhood, school district, town council—and taking action at that local level must be the starting point.
Responding to unmet local needs and reacting to injustices is what grassroots activism is all about. Attend local city council meetings, speak up at town hall meetings, organize protests and letter-writing campaigns, employ “militant nonviolent resistance” and civil disobedience, which Martin Luther King Jr. used to great effect through the use of sit-ins, boycotts and marches.
The power to change things for the better rests with us, not the politicians.
As long as we continue to allow callousness, cruelty, meanness, immorality, ignorance, hatred, intolerance, racism, militarism, materialism, meanness and injustice—magnified by an echo chamber of nasty tweets and government-sanctioned brutality—to trump justice, fairness and equality, there can be no hope of prevailing against the police state.
We could transform this nation if only Americans would work together to harness the power of their discontent and push back against the government’s overreach, excesses and abuse.
As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, the police state is marching forward, more powerful than ever.
If there is to be any hope for freedom in 2021, it rests with “we the people.”
The article 2020: The Year The Tree Of Liberty Was Torched – OpEd appeared first on Eurasia Review.
Counterintelligence from Michael_Novakhov (51 sites)
Trump and FBI – News Review from Michael_Novakhov (10 sites)
The outrageous murder of Right to Information (RTI) activist Mr Ranjan Kumar Das signals new waves of authoritarian ruling class onslaught on democratic movements in Odisha. The state government has failed to protect the lives of RTI activists. Ranjan was murdered near his village Beruan in the Kendrapara district of Odisha on 31st January 2020.
Like his friends, family, fellow RTI activists and acquittances, I am yet to process and recover from this shocking news, which I heard after three days of his murder. In his murder, Kendrapara and Odisha lost a committed activist, and his parents lost their only son. Ranjan’s wife lost her young husband and his four years old son lost his father. It is going to be a year since his murder, but no one is arrested. His killers are still roaming free. Ranjan was killed for his unflagging passion for building a just society based on transparency, accountability and rule of law.
Over the last two decades, I knew Ranjan as my friend, batchmate and hostel mate during our days in the Utkal University, Bhubaneswar, Odisha from 1999 to 2001. He was with the Department of History and I was in the Department of Political Science but there was an organic bond and mutual love for each other. We belong to the same district and Ranjan was the leading organiser and glue for all Kendrapara Cultural Meets in the university. Ranjan displayed his great strength as an organiser. He was a committed friend and fun-loving student with clear heart. He was always there to support friends in crisis. His romantic poems in hostel magazine was very popular among his classmates and batchmates. In Ranjan’s eyes, my idiosyncrasies were many, but it did not create any differences in our friendship. He knew how to overcome all ideological and other differences with a wild smile. After completing our postgraduation, we moved in different directions in life in search of livelihoods. Ranjan’s transparent character dragged him to the RTI movement in the state.
It is not the degrees and qualifications that decides the destinations of life that Ranjan wanted to live and lead by example. Most of our batchmates went on to build their careers after finishing their courses but Ranjan returned to his village to uphold the idealisms of his student life. He has exposed corrupt practices and irregularities of local politicians and government officials with the help of the RTI. He filed many RTI applications seeking details of different government schemes, funding and its utilisation. He knew that his life is under threat due to his activism, but he was determined to sacrifice his own life for the cause of people and their democratic right to know. His premonition came true and he was killed by the local ruling elites whose interests were under threat due to Ranjan’s committed activism. Ranjan did not know how to surrender before the power and fear death. In a world of superficial friendships, Ranjan was always straight. His humous qualities helped him to tell the bitter truth in the face of people without hurting them.
But the shameless cowards killed Ranjan in the darkness of night while he was returning home to be with his family. As Ranjan permanently slept in his grave with pride and dignity, his killers are hiding behind the power of the government and living the life of cowardice. Ranjan survives within hearts and minds of his friends and family as a caring son and a loving friend. His smiles, sharply witty talks and committed activism can never be killed by all powerful ruling elites of the state. Ranjan has raised his voice against all illegal activities in his area to ensure transparency in local development.
Ranjan’s character was neither formed in the classrooms nor within the counterfeit cultural narratives in the society. For him, character was his unfettered commitment for his family, friends, state and society. His character was formed by intrinsic understanding of social and political transformation in the society with the help of the RTI act. He pursued it in letter and spirit to uplift his village, district and the state with the support of RTI led good governance and sustainable development of people and their livelihoods.
The struggle for further deepening of the RTI act will be a befitting reply to the killers of Ranjan. The legacies of fun, friendship, family and sacrifice define Ranjan who survives in our hearts and minds as a liberated RTI activist of Odisha. History documents the names of martyrs of social and political movements and Ranjan knew it well as a student of history. In the contemporary history of people’s movements in Odisha, Ranjan’s life will be celebrated as a luminous star guiding the Right to Information movement in the state. His sacrifice will be an inspiration for many in building a better society based on transparency, fairness, justice and free from exploitation.
Ranjan will be mourned by all his friends and family beyond the RTI movement in the state. But his loss is unbearable for his old parents, wife and son. To all of them, I mourn and extend my deepest love, thoughts and solidarity with the struggle for justice.
&Bhabani Shankar Nayak, University of Glasgow, UK
Counterintelligence from Michael_Novakhov (51 sites)
Trump and FBI – News Review from Michael_Novakhov (10 sites)
The profound economic crisis and political tensions that have reigned in the territory of former Yugoslavia during the last two decades of the previous century (XX century), and especially the circumstances of the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo, have influenced the creation of perceptions of social insecurity among all segments of society. These circumstances, characterized by the improper functioning of the state apparatus, the high level of corruption, the degradation of the public health system and the destruction of the education system, have enabled the unhindered activity of foreign extremist organizations in some countries of the Western Balkans. During this time, all countries in the region were gripped by crises and similar social, economic and political conflicts. In these circumstances, it was enough for a foreign extremist organization to settle in Bosnia, Albania or North Macedonia, and through ethnic ties and the common Islamic tradition that prevails in this compact geographical region, be able to extend its destructive force to other parts of the Western Balkans.
Thus, a large number of Islamic humanitarian and non-governmental organizations from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, State of Qatar, Kuwait and Turkey, later identified as terrorist financing organizations, have invested hundreds of millions of dollars to build a strong propaganda infrastructure, with the aim of spreading a radical ideology and inciting hatred and various religious conflicts in Bosnia, Kosovo, Albania and North Macedonia. These “charitable” organizations, through the material incentives and education of a whole generation of imams coming from the region and being immersed in the various fundamentalist Islamist schools of the Middle East, have created a suitable environment for the creation of an extremist Islamist movement in Kosovo and other countries of the region.
Some operational characteristics and shapes of Islamist extremism in Western Balkans
In the recent decades, several groups of people in Bosnia, Kosovo, Serbia, Albania and Macedonia have appeared under the name “Salafi”. These religious activists, who practice completely different religious rules from the traditional ones of the Islamic religion, are distinguished from other believers by the characteristic way of praying (religious prayers), by their long beards, short mustaches and their characteristic clothes. These people do not claim to be “Wahhabis” but “Salafists” which means “ancestors”. They even oppose their appointment by others as “Wahhabis”, explaining that such a designation is made only by opponents of the Islamic religion, who want to cause division and discord among Muslim believers.
These religious activists, organized in different groups and funded by various Islamic organizations operating in Kosovo, North Macedonia and other countries in the region, have so far organized thousands of different religious courses and lectures in all territories inhabited by Muslim population in the region and continuously have misused not only various mortuary meetings, circumcisions and family holidays, but also public schools and universities as places for the development of agitation and their extremist religious propaganda.
The development of their destructive activities is done mainly tactically and according to a scenario that usually begins with the attack on traditional imams, accusing them of being uneducated or misguided. Then these activists proudly point to their “competence and mission” to spread a genuine Islam that is free of all Western influences. These religious extremists are proudly attacking their national identity according to their Islamist doctrine as if “for a Muslim it is not the national character that matters, but religion.” In propagating their anti-national theses, Islamist extremists emphasize their “truth”, bolster their truth until the nineteenth century when nations were created, all people were identified only by their religious affiliation, not by language, culture or any other ethnic characteristics.
According to this Islamist doctrine, the inspiration of Islamist extremists operating in Albanian lands to attack well-known national figures, such as Gjergj Kastrioti-Skanderbeg, Pjetër Bogdani, Idriz Seferi, and others, comes from accusing them of being the “murderers of Muslims”. Through the intensive development of religious agitation in the uneducated Albanian masses, Islamic extremists attempt to devalue prominent national figures and incite religious hatred against their legacy and persona. As a consequence of the influence of these propaganda statements, a number of shameful and vandalism acts were committed against the monuments of Skanderbeg, Mother Teresa, Pjetër Bogdani, Idriz Seferi, and others. In some cases, the urgent removal of “Catholic” monuments from the squares of Kosovo and Albania had been requested.
The development of Islamist propaganda and agitation is accompanied by fierce attacks against secularism and the rule of law, especially in Kosovo, Western Macedonia and Albania. According to these exponents, a just state can be built only if it is based on the religious rules of sharia. According to Islamist extremists, the cause of all problems in Kosovo, North Macedonia and Albania lies “in the leadership of the state by unbelievers” …, “in the non-practice of religious rules in public life” …, in allowing the construction of a Catholic cathedral in the Muslim land”…,“ in the development of a pro-American and pro-European policy, which is generating harm and insults to all Muslim people”.
As a result, in all countries of the region, an intense anti-Western propaganda is being carried out, blaming the USA, the State of Israel and the EU member countries, for dividing the Muslim world in order to subdue, destroy it politically…, destroying its culture…, humiliation of Muslims as a people and as a religion. In this context, the Islamist radicals demand the unification of all Muslims in one state, according to the Qur’anic verses, that would affect the conquest and spread of the Islamic religion throughout the world.
In recent years, Islamist extremists in Kosovo have also been active in encouraging Kosovars to take part in the war in Syria and Iraq. Therefore, in July 2012, the Islamic Community of Kosovo ordered the holding of a sermon (weekly lecture held on Fridays) on all mosques of Kosovo. According to this circular, the 800 imams of Kosovo mosques gave a lecture dedicated to the “Land of Sham”. In this lecture the word of the Prophet Mohammed was propagated, according to which “Sham is a blessed land…, the chosen land of Allah…, the place where the believers stand stoically in respect to religion.”
Through this circular, deep hatred was expressed against the “Shiite” and “Alevi” sects and an appeal was made for the provision of “fraternal assistance to the Muslim people in Syria”. After this lecture, a new wave of Kosovar volunteers went to war in Syria. Even the son of the mufti of Kosovo, had made a public call to go to Syria “to liberate the holy land or to die for Allah”.
Therefore Islamist extremists through agitation and religious propaganda try to mislead young believers in every Muslim-populated countries in the Western Balkans that “the establishment of the Islamic Caliphate is envisaged in the Qur’an as the revival of the Islamic State” (which was established after the death of the Prophet Muhammad) …, “that Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is the true descendant of the Prophet Muhammad”. As a result in many Kosovar settings Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is worshiped as an immortal religious and military leader not only of the Islamic State but also leads all Muslims in the world. Some indoctrinated individuals even refer to al-Baghdadi as Amir al-Mu’minin, or the “Commander of the Muslims,” whose mission is to continue the fight against the infidels. According to an alleged al-Qaeda strategy, the fight against infidels began with the attacks of September 11th, 2001, it advanced worldwide, made headway with the proclamation of the Islamic State, and will end in 2020, with the complete victory of the “Islamic Army”.” Against the unbelievers (Christians and Jews), where the eternal rule of the world will be established by Islam.
The development of such a propaganda by Islamist extremists for the “honor of Muslims”, for the “Islamic State“, for “jihad“, “paradise” and other concepts, along with the material assistance provided, is undoubtedly influencing some young people to create false hopes and misconceptions about life. Such an indoctrination also shows the worrying level of ideological degradation of parts of the Muslim youth, that has been achieved mainly through the systematic decline of the quality of education, high level of corruption, improper functioning of the state apparatus and the extremely negative impact of Islamic propaganda, which offers no rational idea or real concepts to solve various social, economic or political challenges, but only incites religious hatred and bigotry.
The establishment of radical – extremist movements in Kosovo
Since the end of the 1998-1999 war, various ideas and demands have been presented for the formation of an Islamic political movement in Kosovo that will act towards the change of the new democratic government, that was established with the help of the international community; with an Islamic power that will be organized and act according to the laws of Sharia and the model of contemporary Islamic states. Therefore, in addition to the large number of Islamic humanitarian organizations that operate mainly as branches of Turkish-Arab organizations in Kosovo, in recent years the following Islamic political organizations have been established:
- The Muslim Forum of Kosovo. This forum has continuously incited hatred and religious intolerance and has developed insulting propaganda against well-known national figures (with Catholic religious affiliation) in Kosovo. According to some analysts, the Kosovo Muslim Forum represents the ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood in Kosovo.
- The Forum of Young Muslims of Kosovo. This political – religious organization, whose mission is the “Islamic renewal, revival” is operating in Macedonia, Serbia, St. Galen of Switzerland and Vienna, Austria.
The first activity of this organization was the distribution of 20 thousand copies of the “Qur’an” in all parts of Kosovo. In May 2012, the organization called on protesters in North Macedonia and Kosovo to raise the flags of Muslim states and establish religious political parties with the aim of creating an Islamic Albania!
In November 2012, the Forum of Young Muslims of Kosovo joined the insulting propaganda, carried out by some Kosovo imams (Irfan Salihu, Shefqet Krasniqi, etc.), against Skenderbeu, Mother Teresa. This forum has demanded from the Kosovo authorities, “the removal of all Christian heroes from the squares of Kosovo so that Muslim Albanians do not revolt when they see them” and has consistently supported their overthrow and humiliation.
The Forum of Young Muslims of Kosovo, through a press release published on January 8th, 2015, has also supported the murder of the journalists of the French magazine “Charlie Hebdo”, accusing them of being “fascists” and accusing France as an “anti-Islamic” state that has committed “aggression in the Muslim world” and is exerting racism and Islamophobia while discriminating and humiliating Muslims.
- The Islamic Movement Unite – LISBA, is “the first fundamentalist Islamist party in the Balkans”. According to many sources, this radical Islamist movement represents the ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood in Kosovo. The leader of the Islamic Movement Unite, Fuad Ramiqi, is also the representative of the “European Muslim Network” in Kosovo, headed by the Egyptian fundamentalist cleric living in Qatar, Yusuf al-Qaradawi and (the nephew of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood), professor of Islamic sciences in Switzerland Tariq Ramadan.
LISBA is known for submitting ultimate requirements in providing spaces for religious prayers in all public institutions of Kosovo, for allowing the wearing of veils for women in all primary and secondary schools in Kosovo, for the introduction of Islamic education. in the public schools of Kosovo, for the construction of a large mosque in the courtyard of the University and in front of the Catholic Cathedral in Prishtina.
Through the submission of these irrational demands and the development of a very radical religious agitation as well as the organization of massive Islamist protests in all parts of Kosovo, LISBA has tried to influence the radicalization of the Muslim population in Kosovo, in order to create a revolutionary situation that would enable their violent coming to power and the creation of an Islamic state of Kosovo.
- Other Islamist political groups in Kosovo. In addition to the aforementioned parties, there are several other small Islamist parties operating in Kosovo, such as the “Justice Party”, the “Justice and Development Initiative”, the “FJALA” Party, and the “Civic Initiative for Justice and Unity”.
A common feature of all Islamist political parties and extremist movements operating in Kosovo is their coordinated activity towards the destruction of inter-religious tolerance that has been cultivated for centuries in Kosovo. In carrying out their extremist activities, they manifest a high degree of aggression, ideological intolerance, religious hatred and a willingness to use physical violence against “unbelievers”. Their goal is the establishment of the “Islamic State of Kosovo”!
Islamist extremism in Kosovo and in other Balkan countries, in all its forms and shapes, poses a serious threat to national security. The degree of this danger is increased by the increasingly visible cooperation between various radical and extremist Islamic groups in the region, which is made possible by the motivation, the same religious ideology, and the common “jihadist” past. This danger has been concretised with the return of about 150 people from the war zones in Syria and Iraq and the operational acts of some foreign intelligence services in Kosovo, Albania, North Macedonia and other countries in the region. For this reason, the governments of the countries of the region, together with the international security institutions, in the interest of protecting human rights and their democratic order, should consider the fight against Islamic extremism as one of their primary duties. Currently, the risk of terrorist attacks by Islamic extremists from Kosovo and other countries in the region is possible and at the same time is limited.
If political and social crises erupt in Kosovo, Albania and North Macedonia and the conflict in the Middle East deepens, causing the polarization of different views on Christianity and Islam, then the possibility of attacks committed by Islamist extremists in the region will not be ruled out; in Kosovo, Albania or any of the EU countries. In the interest of preventing possible Islamic terrorist attacks, a comprehensive program should be implemented to eradicate the radicalism of indoctrinated persons, especially those treated as “lone wolves”. Such a program should not be treated or understood as a “program for the de-Islamization of Muslims”, as propagated by some radical structures in Kosovo and other countries in the region, nor as a program that favors extremists in employment or recruitment comprising of “free” housing by the state, as demanded by some Muslim ideologues mainly in Kosovo.
The program of preventive measures for the eradication of radicalization should focus on finding and eliminating all those negative influences that have influenced the radicalization of many people in the countries of the Western Balkans. Only when the state authorities of the Balkan nations take the necessary measures to prevent the influence of various criminogenic factors, which are mainly of exogenous nature, can the eradication of radicalization and the abandonment of extremist misconceptions be achieved by hundreds of thousands of young people and Muslims in Kosovo and other Western Balkan Cities.
Prof. Dr. Kolë KRASNIQI was born on November 27, 1961 in Gl1aviçica, Municipality of Peja. He completed the primary school in his hometown, and high school in Peja. In 1985 he graduated from the Faculty of Law of the University of Prishtina. In 1992, after completing his scientific internship in Croatia, he successfully defended his master’s thesis entitled: “The role of Open Correctional Institutions in the re-socialization of convicted persons and in the prevention of crime.” In 1994 he pursued his doctoral studies at the Faculty of Law of the University of Vienna, where he graduated in June 1998. Since 2006 Krasniqi has been working as a Distinguished Full Professor at the FAMA University College in Prishtina, where he was also a Dean for four years (2008-2012). Since 2012 Professor Krasniqi has been working as a Professor of Law in the Faculty of Law, Haxhi Zeka University in Pejë, Kosovo, where he also served as the Dean from 2012 to 2016. Kole KRASNIQI is the author of several books, has written over fifty white papers and scientific research articles published in various national and international scientific journals in over seven languages.
The article The Menace Of Asymmetric Islamic Extremism To National And International Security – OpEd appeared first on Eurasia Review.
Counterintelligence from Michael_Novakhov (51 sites)
Trump and FBI – News Review from Michael_Novakhov (10 sites)
Most observers believe that falling oil prices delivered the coup de grâce to the Soviet Union, but in fact, it was not just declining prices but declining production as well that did the job. That combination has reappeared now – and there are few prospects that Russia will be able to count on a rebound by either.
According to the Russian energy ministry, the Russian Federation will pump 8.4 less oil in 2020 than it did in 2019. And its head, Aleksandr Novak says that unless prices rise and then stabilize at 45 to 55 US dollars a barrel, Russia “will never restore production” (finanz.ru/novosti/birzhevyye-tovary/rossiya-mozhet-nikogda-ne-vosstanovit-dobychu-nefti-1029919444).
What Novak’s words mean, Sergey Khestanov of the Open Broker marketing firm says, is that “at prices lower than 45 dollars a barrel, about eight percent of Russian production will become unprofitable” and that will recreate the situation, albeit at higher prices, that existed at the end of the USSR.
“The drama of the USSR was not only the drama of a decline in prices for oil but also of declines in production,” Khestanov says. After Soviet production began to decline from its peak in 1987, the situation was exacerbated by a sharp fall in oil prices. But both factors played a key role in depriving Moscow of the income it needed to maintain itself and the country.
Russia’s agreement earlier this year with OPEC+ was intended to raise prices, but at the same time, it has reduced Russian production. Major fields are shutting down wells that are less cost effective, the analyst says; and under present conditions, there is “no guarantee” that they will ever resume operations.
The almost exclusive focus on oil prices has obscured this, he suggests, leading many to forget that high prices bring in less income if production declines than low prices do if production is increasing as is the case in many countries now but significantly not in that of the Russian Federation.
The article Russia Faces Not Just Falling Oil Prices But Declining Production – OpEd appeared first on Eurasia Review.
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Whenever the Democrats even so much as slightly disagree with each other on something, the media dutifully busts out the “Democrats in disarray” headlines. And why not? It alarms the left and excites the right, making for an easy ratings play, whether there’s any truth to it or not.
Right now we’re seeing something else: Republicans in disarray. After all, infamous Republican Congressman Louis Gohmert just filed a lawsuit against Republican Vice President Mike Pence, aimed at forcing Pence to refuse to accept the results of the election on January 6th.
To be clear, this has literally zero chance of going anywhere, as will be the case with every other bit of whacked out nonsense that the Republicans come up with between now and the end of Trump’s term. But we’ve nonetheless reached the point where a Republican Congressman is suing the Republican Vice President. That’s how out of control things are for the Republicans. Just imagine the headlines if this kind of internal chaos were playing out on the Democratic Party side.
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