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The new Cultural Imperialism: Palmyra’s Roman-era Ruins to be Reconstructed in Western Capitals

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It has recently been announced that replicas of the Roman-era ruins at Palmyra, which have so far survived the ISIS assault, are to be built and displayed at London’s Trafalgar Square and New York. The replica is of a 2000 year-old arch which stood inside one of the temples that the terrorist blew-up last year, and will be reconstructed using the world’s largest 3D printer. The Independent reports:

The monument was attacked by Islamist fighters and was largely reduced to rubble. One of the 15 metre high arches, which stood at the temple’s entrance, survived.

The construction of the temple entrance has been proposed by the Institute for Digital Archaeology (IDA), who will use the world’s largest 3D printer for the project.

“The aim of our proposed installation is to draw attention to the global crisis surrounding the looting and despoliation of cultural heritage objects and architecture and the importance of celebrating the beauty and significance of these objects to the everyday lives of modern people.” Dr Alexy Karenowska, Director of Technology at the Institute for Digital Archaeology, told The Independent.

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The temple was dedicated to the Mesoptamian god Bel in AD32 and was the centre of religious life in the area. It was converted into a Christian church during the Byzantine era and then later into a mosque.

The full-size replicas will be the centrepiece for world heritage week in April and is reportedly being built as a symbol of defiance against Isis’s attempts to erase several aspects of Middle Eastern history.

The arch in Trafalgar Square will be made of a lightweight composite and stone powder.

The printer will work from a 3D image generated from dozens of two dimensional photographs and tourist pictures taken before the temple was blown up with barrels of high-explosive. Khaled al-Asaad, 82, the archaeologist who managed the site for 40 years, was beheaded by Isis in Palmyra’s amphitheatre.

However rather than a symbolic act of defiance in the face of international terrorism, this move by Washington and its London sidekick is akin to a slap in the face of the Syrian nation that these two countries have done so much to destroy. Lest we forget, ISIS were able to drive their large convoy of black and white Toyota trucks from the Iraqi desert to the ancient city untouched by the so-called US-led 60 nation ‘anti-ISIS coalition’ that is supposedly doing its best to ‘degrade and destroy’ the Islamic State.

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Instead the Obama administration and its despotic puppets prefer to leave this monster of their own creation untouched if there’s a chance it will come into contact with the Syrian Arab Army; or ‘Assad loyalists’ as the Western media likes to call them. The truth of the matter is that the countries whom have waged war on Syria for the last five years – namely America, the UK, France, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar, Jordan and Israel – bear direct responsibility for the heartbreaking loss of the country’s cultural heritage and the beheading of Khaled al-Asaad; whom the media largely declined to remind readers was an employee of the state that they loathe so much.

Christiane Gruber – associate professor and director of graduate studies at the University of Michigan – explaining the meaning behind the term ‘Daesh’, says:

Over the past year, cartoonists across the Middle East have critiqued ISIS with equal amounts of ferocity and fearlessness. From Jordan to Iran, they frequently lambast ISIS—referring to it through its acronym Daesh, which is related to the pejorative Arabic term meaning “to tread under foot”—as destructive of Islam and the world’s cultural heritage, as the growling lapdog of various superpowers, as the ultimate devil and grim reaper of Iraq and as an Oscar-winning sensation obsessed with bloody forms of self-promotion.

By giving itself the authority to reconstruct Syria’s heritage in Western capitals, the American and Brits seemingly view themselves as the defenders and saviours of Middle Eastern civilisation, whose barbarians clearly need rescuing from themselves. Gruber’s description above can just as aptly describe Cameron and Obama as it does the foot-soldiers of the Islamic State.

The Syrians on the other hand, with their huge sacrifices unacknowledged, will continue the fight against the same forces who claim to be saving them.

Let’s just hope the reconstruction doesn’t convince ISIS to blow-up the remaining arch.

Replica of Syrian arch of Palmyra that survived Isis attack to be erected in Trafalgar Square and New York

Ignored and Unreported, Muslim Cartoonists and Poking Fun at ISIS

*Cartoons from Iran’s Daesh cartoon competition, entries and names of artists can be viewed here: http://resistart.ir/%DA%AF%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B1%DB%8C-%D8%A2%D8%AB%D8%A7%D8%B1-%D9%85%D8%B3%D8%A7%D8%A8%D9%82%D9%87-%D8%A8%DB%8C%D9%86-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D9%84%D9%84%DB%8C-%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%B9%D8%B4-%D8%A8%D8%AE%D8%B4-%DA%86%D9%87%D8%B1%D9%87/

Crimea: Six Months On

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Speaking at the United Nations Assembly this week, Washington’s puppet Prime Minister of Ukraine – Arseniy Yatsenyuk – stood on the podium and begged world leaders not to lift their sanctions on Russia. Stating that Ukraine’s current conflict was not a domestic one but an ‘invasion’, Yatsenyuk directed his comments at the Russian president, saying: “Mr. Putin, you can win the fight against the troops. But you will never win the fight against the nation, the united Ukrainian nation.” He asked that no sanctions be lifted until Russian troops withdrew from eastern Ukraine – including Crimea.

Regardless of whether or not there are Russian troops in eastern parts of Ukraine such as Donetsk right now, what the western media failed to highlight during the annexation of Crimea was that there was always a large Russian military presence there: they did not sneak in overnight as the MSM seemed to suggest, as Crimea is the location of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet – and this has been the case since the eighteenth century.

Six months on from the referendum, it seems unlikely that Crimea will become part of Ukraine again. Ukraine’s military dolphins are now under Russian command, and most importantly: the Crimean people aren’t dying. If Russia had not moved so quickly all those months ago, who knows how much higher the death toll in eastern Ukraine would be by now?

 

The legality of Obama’s war in Syria and the ‘Khorasan Group’

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Today the Guardian reports that America’s ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Powers, sent the UN a letter, stating her governments reasoning for not obtaining prior approval for the airstrikes it recently begun conducting against ISIS in Syria.

This reasoning states that the US is acting on behalf of Iraq, whom cannot defend itself sufficiently by itself. This is reasonable, as the Iraqi government asked for America’s help. However, the letter also claims that the US retains the right to attack ISIS in Syria due to the weakness of Syria’s government.

Power writes: “States must be able to defend themselves, in accordance with the inherent right on individual and collective self-defense, as reflected in article 51 of the UN Charter, when, as is the case here, the government of the state where the threat is located is unwilling or unable to prevent the use of its territory for such attacks.”

What Powers has conveniently failed to mention here, is that for years now, Washington has actively been working to undermine the Assad government – covertly arming and training so called ‘”moderate” rebels in mid-2012, 2013, and now again in September 2014. Some of these “moderate” rebels whom received training from the CIA at camps in Turkey and Jordan are now acting as ISIS commanders. Therefore, Obama and co. are citing Assad’s forces as being incapable of “degrading and ultimately destroying” ISIS themselves, which is a situation that has at least partly come into being through the US’s prior involvement, and quite frankly highlights the idiocy of Congress’ most recent approval of a new arms package for the mysterious moderate rebels.

Finally, the Obama Administration has asserted that the authorisation granted for military force against al-Qaeda in 2001 gives them the right to go after ISIS in Syria. Certain media publications have noted al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria, Jabhat al-Nusra, have distanced themselves from ISIS, denouncing their violence towards fellow Muslims. However, following America’s first round of strikes in Syria in Monday, the name ‘Khorasan Group’ has hit the headlines. Khorasan has been labelled as a cell of extremists embedded in al-Nusra, made up of “seasoned al-Qaeda operatives,” who Washington says had established a safe haven to plot attacks on the West. In fact, the US claims Khorasan were in the final stages of planning imminent attacks on the “homeland” and “western interests”, despite having claimed only days earlier that there was no immediate threat to the US. Is it possible that this sudden threat posed by Khorasan – apparently a group that intelligence agents have been aware of for years but not mentioned until yesterday – and the apparent killing of 50 other al-Qaeda members on Monday evening, is being cited as justification for the US’s use of 2001’s authorisation to use military force, and lack of UN approval?

If tyranny and oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy. – James Madison

 

References:

What is the Khorasan Group? – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-29350271

US ties itself in legal knots to cover shifting rationale for Syria strikes – http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/24/us-legal-knots-shifting-rationale-syria-strikes

‘It never happened’ – US intervention in Syria – http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/ian-sinclair/us-syria_b_5859930.html