Archive | August 5, 2015

Wedding Invitation: 4,000 Syrian Refugees*

Wedding Invitation: 4,000 Syrian Refugees*

By Amanda Froelich

They decided to use their wedding reception as an opportunity to feed and offer hope to Syrian refugees.

A Turkish couple decided to start their marriage off right when they, last week, invited 4,000 Syrian refugees to celebrate with them.

Fethullah Üzümcüoğlu and Esra Polat shared their “I do’s” in Kilis province on the Syrian border, which is presently the location where thousands of refugees are fleeing conflict in the neighboring country.

Hatice Avci, a spokesperson for the organization Kimse Yok Mu, told i100.co.uk that the newly married couple donated their savings their families had put together for a traditional two to three-day wedding and celebrated with one big banquet, inviting the refugees nearby.

The father of the groom, Ali Üzümcüoğlu, conjured up the idea to share a bit of wedding joy with those less fortunate.

“I thought that sharing a big delicious dinner with our family and friends was unnecessary, knowing that there are so many people in need living next door. So I came up with this idea and shared it with my son. I’m very happy that he accepted it and they started their new happy journey with such a selfless action,” he said.

Esra Polat, the bride, shared that she was “shocked when Fethullah first told me about the idea but afterwards I was won over by it. It was such a wonderful experience. I’m happy that we had the opportunity to share our wedding meal with the people who are in real need.”

The entire wedding party and all guests worked together to operate the food trucks, sharing the banquet with refugee families.

According to local media, the bride and groom helped distribute the meal themselves, and even took their wedding pictures with people at the camp.

This day will definitely go down in the books. The groom noted that he’d never taken part in something like this before, but it was the “best and happiest moment of my life.”

He said, “Seeing the happiness in the eyes of the Syrian refugee children is just priceless. We started our journey to happiness with making others happy and that’s a great feeling.”

Incredibly, a number of people inspired by the philanthropic wedding are now planning a similar event to take place on their own ‘big day’.

Source*

Related Topics:

Greek Islanders Breaking the Law to Help Thousands of Desperate Migrants*

Rich Corporate Elites are Trying to Crush Marriage Advocates*

Feel Like You Don’t Fit In? It is For a Reason*

Michigan Farmers Markets—Helping Families and Local Businesses through Food Stamps*

Advertisements

Our Founding Fathers included Islam*

Our Founding Fathers included Islam*

Thomas Jefferson didn’t just own a Qur’an — he engaged with Islam and fought to ensure the rights of Muslims

By Denise Spellberg

Excerpted from “Thomas Jefferson’s Qur’an”

[He] sais “neither Pagan nor Mahamedan [Muslim] nor Jew ought to be excluded from the civil rights of the Commonwealth because of his religion.” — Thomas Jefferson, quoting John Locke, 1776 

At a time when most Americans were uninformed, misinformed, or simply afraid of Islam, Thomas Jefferson imagined Muslims as future citizens of his new nation. His engagement with the faith began with the purchase of a Qur’an eleven years before he wrote the Declaration of Independence. Jefferson’s Qur’an survives still in the Library of Congress, serving as a symbol of his and early America’s complex relationship with Islam and its adherents. That relationship remains of signal importance to this day.

That he owned a Qur’an reveals Jefferson’s interest in the Islamic religion, but it does not explain his support for the rights of Muslims. Jefferson first read about Muslim “civil rights” in the work of one of his intellectual heroes: the seventeenth-century English philosopher John Locke. Locke had advocated the toleration of Muslims—and Jews—following in the footsteps of a few others in Europe who had considered the matter for more than a century before him. Jefferson’s ideas about Muslim rights must be understood within this older context, a complex set of transatlantic ideas that would continue to evolve most markedly from the sixteenth through the nineteenth centuries.

Amid the interdenominational Christian violence in Europe, some Christians, beginning in the sixteenth century, chose Muslims as the test case for the demarcation of the theoretical boundaries of their toleration for all believers. Because of these European precedents, Muslims also became a part of American debates about religion and the limits of citizenship. As they set about creating a new government in the United States, the American Founders, Protestants all, frequently referred to the adherents of Islam as they contemplated the proper scope of religious freedom and individual rights among the nation’s present and potential inhabitants.

The founding generation debated whether the United States should be exclusively Protestant or a religiously plural polity. And if the latter, whether political equality—the full rights of citizenship, including access to the highest office—should extend to non-Protestants. The mention, then, of Muslims as potential citizens of the United States forced the Protestant majority to imagine the parameters of their new society beyond toleration. It obliged them to interrogate the nature of religious freedom: the issue of a “religious test” in the Constitution, like the ones that would exist at the state level into the nineteenth century; the question of “an establishment of religion,” potentially of Protestant Christianity; and the meaning and extent of a separation of religion from government.

Resistance to the idea of Muslim citizenship was predictable in the eighteenth century. Americans had inherited from Europe almost a millennium of negative distortions of the faith’s theological and political character. Given the dominance and popularity of these anti-Islamic representations, it was startling that a few notable Americans not only refused to exclude Muslims, but even imagined a day when they would be citizens of the United States, with full and equal rights. This surprising, uniquely American egalitarian defence of Muslim rights was the logical extension of European precedents already mentioned. Still, on both sides of the Atlantic, such ideas were marginal at best. How, then, did the idea of the Muslim as a citizen with rights survive despite powerful opposition from the outset? And what is the fate of that ideal in the twenty-first century?

This book provides a new history of the founding era, one that explains how and why Thomas Jefferson and a handful of others adopted and then moved beyond European ideas about the toleration of Muslims. It should be said at the outset that these exceptional men were not motivated by any inherent appreciation for Islam as a religion. Muslims, for most American Protestants, remained beyond the outer limit of those possessing acceptable beliefs, but they nevertheless became emblems of two competing conceptions of the nation’s identity: one essentially preserving the Protestant status quo, and the other fully realizing the pluralism implied in the Revolutionary rhetoric of inalienable and universal rights. Thus while some fought to exclude a group whose inclusion they feared would ultimately portend the undoing of the nation’s Protestant character, a pivotal minority, also Protestant, perceiving the ultimate benefit and justice of a religiously plural America, set about defending the rights of future Muslim citizens.

They did so, however, not for the sake of actual Muslims, because none were known at the time to live in America. Instead, Jefferson and others defended Muslim rights for the sake of “imagined Muslims,” the promotion of whose theoretical citizenship would prove the true universality of American rights. Indeed, this defense of imagined Muslims would also create political room to consider the rights of other despised minorities whose numbers in America, though small, were quite real, namely Jews and Catholics. Although it was Muslims who embodied the ideal of inclusion, Jews and Catholics were often linked to them in early American debates, as Jefferson and others fought for the rights of all non-Protestants.

In 1783, the year of the nation’s official independence from Great Britain, George Washington wrote to recent Irish Catholic immigrants in New York City. The American Catholic minority of roughly twenty-five thousand then had few legal protections in any state and, because of their faith, no right to hold political office in New York. Washington insisted that “the bosom of America” was “open to receive . . . the oppressed and the persecuted of all Nations and Religions; whom we shall welcome to a participation of all our rights and privileges.” He would also write similar missives to Jewish communities, whose total population numbered only about two thousand at this time.

One year later, in 1784, Washington theoretically enfolded Muslims into his private world at Mount Vernon. In a letter to a friend seeking a carpenter and bricklayer to help at his Virginia home, he explained that the workers’ beliefs—or lack thereof—mattered not at all:

“If they are good workmen, they may be of Asia, Africa, or Europe. They may be Mahometans [Muslims], Jews or Christian of an[y] Sect, or they may be Atheists.”

Clearly, Muslims were part of Washington’s understanding of religious pluralism—at least in theory. But he would not have actually expected any Muslim applicants.

Although we have since learned that there were in fact Muslims resident in eighteenth-century America, this book demonstrates that the Founders and their generational peers never knew it. Thus their Muslim constituency remained an imagined, future one. But the fact that both Washington and Jefferson attached to it such symbolic significance is not accidental. Both men were heir to the same pair of opposing European traditions.

The first, which predominated, depicted Islam as the antithesis of the “true faith” of Protestant Christianity, as well as the source of tyrannical governments abroad. To tolerate Muslims—to accept them as part of a majority Protestant Christian society—was to welcome people who professed a faith most eighteenth-century Europeans and Americans believed false, foreign, and threatening. Catholics would be similarly characterized in American Protestant founding discourse. Indeed, their faith, like Islam, would be deemed a source of tyranny and thus antithetical to American ideas of liberty.

In order to counter such fears, Jefferson and other supporters of non-Protestant citizenship drew upon a second, less popular but crucial stream of European thought, one that posited the toleration of Muslims as well as Jews and Catholics. Those few Europeans, both Catholic and Protestant, who first espoused such ideas in the sixteenth century often died for them. In the seventeenth century, those who advocated universal religious toleration frequently suffered death or imprisonment, banishment or exile, the elites and common folk alike. The ranks of these so-called heretics in Europe included Catholic and Protestant peasants, Protestant scholars of religion and political theory, and fervid Protestant dissenters, such as the first English Baptists—but no people of political power or prominence. Despite not being organized, this minority consistently opposed their coreligionists by defending theoretical Muslims from persecution in Christian-majority states.

As a member of the eighteenth-century Anglican establishment and a prominent political leader in Virginia, Jefferson represented a different sort of proponent for ideas that had long been the hallmark of dissident victims of persecution and exile. Because of his elite status, his own endorsement of Muslim citizenship demanded serious consideration in Virginia—and the new nation. Together with a handful of like-minded American Protestants, he advanced a new, previously unthinkable national blueprint. Thus did ideas long on the fringe of European thought flow into the mainstream of American political discourse at its inception.

Not that these ideas found universal welcome. Even a man of Jefferson’s national reputation would be attacked by his political opponents for his insistence that the rights of all believers should be protected from government interference and persecution. But he drew support from a broad range of constituencies, including Anglicans (or Episcopalians), as well as dissenting Presbyterians and Baptists, who suffered persecution perpetrated by fellow Protestants. No denomination had a unanimously positive view of non-Protestants as full American citizens, yet support for Muslim rights was expressed by some members of each.

What the supporters of Muslim rights were proposing was extraordinary even at a purely theoretical level in the eighteenth century. American citizenship—which had embraced only free, white, male Protestants—was in effect to be abstracted from religion. Race and gender would continue as barriers, but not so faith. Legislation in Virginia would be just the beginning, the First Amendment far from the end of the story; in fact, Jefferson, Washington, and James Madison would work toward this ideal of separation throughout their entire political lives, ultimately leaving it to others to carry on and finish the job. This book documents, for the first time, how Jefferson and others, despite their negative, often incorrect understandings of Islam, pursued that ideal by advocating the rights of Muslims and all non-Protestants.

A decade before George Washington signalled openness to Muslim labourers in 1784 he had listed two slave women from West Africa among his taxable property. “Fatimer” and “Little Fatimer” were a mother and daughter—both indubitably named after the Prophet Muhammad’s daughter Fatima (d. 632). Washington advocated Muslim rights, never realizing that as a slaveholder he was denying Muslims in his own midst any rights at all, including the right to practice their faith. This tragic irony may well have also recurred on the plantations of Jefferson and Madison, although proof of their slaves’ religion remains less than definitive. Nevertheless, having been seized and transported from West Africa, the first American Muslims may have numbered in the tens of thousands, a population certainly greater than the resident Jews and possibly even the Catholics. Although some have speculated that a few former Muslim slaves may have served in the Continental Army, there is little direct evidence any practiced Islam and none that these individuals were known to the Founders. In any case, they had no influence on later political debates about Muslim citizenship.

The insuperable facts of race and slavery rendered invisible the very believers whose freedoms men like Jefferson, Washington, and Madison defended, and whose ancestors had resided in America since the seventeenth century, as long as Protestants had. Indeed, when the Founders imagined future Muslim citizens, they presumably imagined them as white, because by the 1790s “full American citizenship could be claimed by any free, white immigrant, regardless of ethnicity or religious beliefs.”

The two actual Muslims Jefferson would wittingly meet during his lifetime were not black West African slaves but North African ambassadors of Turkish descent. They may have appeared to him to have more melanin than he did, but he never commented on their complexions or race. (Other observers either failed to mention it or simply affirmed that the ambassador in question was not black.) But then Jefferson was interested in neither diplomat for reasons of religion or race; he engaged them because of their political power. (They were, of course, also free.)

But even earlier in his political life—as an ambassador, secretary of state, and vice president—Jefferson had never perceived a predominantly religious dimension to the conflict with North African Muslim powers, whose pirates threatened American shipping in the Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic. As this book demonstrates, Jefferson as president would insist to the rulers of Tripoli and Tunis that his nation harboured no anti-Islamic bias, even going so far as to express the extraordinary claim of believing in the same God as those men.

The equality of believers that Jefferson sought at home was the same one he professed abroad, in both contexts attempting to divorce religion from politics, or so it seemed. In fact, Jefferson’s limited but unique appreciation for Islam appears as a minor but active element in his presidential foreign policy with North Africa—and his most personal Deist and Unitarian beliefs. The two were quite possibly entwined, with their source Jefferson’s unsophisticated yet effective understanding of the Qur’an he owned.

Still, as a man of his time, Jefferson was not immune to negative feelings about Islam. He would even use some of the most popular anti-Islamic images inherited from Europe to drive his early political arguments about the separation of religion from government in Virginia. Yet ultimately Jefferson and others not as well known were still able to divorce the idea of Muslim citizenship from their dislike of Islam, as they forged an “imagined political community,” inclusive beyond all precedent.

The clash between principle and prejudice that Jefferson himself overcame in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries remains a test for the nation in the twenty-first. Since the late nineteenth century, the United States has in fact become home to a diverse and dynamic American Muslim citizenry, but this population has never been fully welcomed. Whereas in Jefferson’s time organized prejudice against Muslims was exercised against an exclusively foreign and imaginary non-resident population, today political attacks target real, resident American Muslim citizens. Particularly in the wake of 9/11 and the so-called War on Terror, a public discourse of anti-Muslim bigotry has arisen to justify depriving American Muslim citizens of the full and equal exercise of their civil rights.

For example, recent anti-Islamic slurs used to deny the legitimacy of a presidential candidacy contained eerie echoes of founding precedents. The legal possibility of a Muslim president was first discussed with vitriol during debates involving America’s Founders. Thomas Jefferson would be the first in the history of American politics to suffer the false charge of being a Muslim, an accusation considered the ultimate Protestant slur in the eighteenth century. That a presidential candidate in the twenty-first century should have been subject to much the same false attack, still presumed as politically damning to any real American Muslim candidate’s potential for elected office, demonstrates the importance of examining how the multiple images of Islam and Muslims first entered American consciousness and how the rights of Muslims first came to be accepted as national ideals. Ultimately, the status of Muslim citizenship in America today cannot be properly appreciated without establishing the historical context of its eighteenth-century origins.

Muslim American rights became a theoretical reality early on, but as a practical one they have been much slower to evolve. In fact, they are being tested daily. Recently, John Esposito, a distinguished historian of Islam in contemporary America, observed,

“Muslims are led to wonder: What are the limits of this Western pluralism?”

Thomas Jefferson’s Qur’an documents the origins of such pluralism in the United States in order to illuminate where, when, and how Muslims were first included in American ideals.

Until now, most historians have proposed that Muslims represented nothing more than the incarnated antithesis of American values. These same voices also insist that Protestant Americans always and uniformly defined both the religion of Islam and its practitioners as inherently un-American. Indeed, most historians posit that the emergence of the United States as an ideological and political phenomenon occurred in opposition to eighteenth-century concepts about Islam as a false religion and source of despotic government. There is certainly evidence for these assumptions in early American religious polemic, domestic politics, foreign policy, and literary sources. There are, however, also considerable observations about Islam and Muslims that cast both in a more affirmative light, including key references to Muslims as future American citizens in important founding debates about rights. These sources show that American Protestants did not monolithically view Islam as “a thoroughly foreign religion.”

This book documents the counter-assertion that Muslims, far from being definitively un-American, were deeply embedded in the concept of citizenship in the United States since the country’s inception, even if these inclusive ideas were not then accepted by the majority of Americans. While focusing on Jefferson’s views of Islam, Muslims, and the Islamic world, it also analyzes the perspectives of John Adams and James Madison. Nor is it limited to these key Founders. The cast of those who took part in the contest concerning the rights of Muslims, imagined and real, is not confined to famous political elites but includes Presbyterian and Baptist protestors against Virginia’s religious establishment; the Anglican lawyers James Iredell and Samuel Johnston in North Carolina, who argued for the rights of Muslims in their state’s constitutional ratifying convention; and John Leland, an evangelical Baptist preacher and ally of Jefferson and Madison in Virginia, who agitated in Connecticut and Massachusetts in support of Muslim equality, the Constitution, the First Amendment, and the end of established religion at the state level.

The lives of two American Muslim slaves of West African origin, Ibrahima Abd al-Rahman and Omar ibn Said, also intersect this narrative. Both were literate in Arabic, the latter writing his autobiography in that language. They remind us of the presence of tens of thousands of Muslim slaves who had no rights, no voice, and no hope of American citizenship in the midst of these early discussions about religious and political equality for future, free practitioners of Islam.

Imagined Muslims, along with real Jews and Catholics, were the consummate outsiders in much of America’s political discourse at the founding. Jews and Catholics would struggle into the twentieth century to gain in practice the equal rights assured them in theory, although even this process would not entirely eradicate prejudice against either group. Nevertheless, from among the original triad of religious outsiders in the United States, only Muslims remain the objects of a substantial civic discourse of derision and marginalization, still being perceived in many quarters as not fully American. This book writes Muslims back into our founding narrative in the hope of clarifying the importance of critical historical precedents at a time when the idea of the Muslim as citizen is, once more, hotly contested.

Source*

Related Topics:

The Oldest Qur’ans are Actually in Yemen, in Danger of Being Bombed*

The Islam You Don’t Know!*

How the British Empire aka New World Order Sowed Seeds of Destruction towards Islam*

The Ugly Face of American Islamophobia

Islamophobia: From the Spanish Inquisition to the Western Inquisition

‘Fitna’ Movie Producer Converted to Islam and Performs Hajj*

Guantanamo Prison Guard Converts to Islam*

Reflection on Islam, Liberty and Development IV

American Muslims Bring Relief After the Storms

UK Poll: Muslims give more to Charity than Other Faiths*

Hope for Womanhood as Non-Muslims Sympathize with Attacked Pregnant Muslimah

Unholy Trinity United States-Israel- Saudi Arabia Sowing Discord amongst Muslims*

Muslimah Takes Down Leading Islamaphobe*

Actor-Producer Ben Affleck Furiously Defends Islam on TV*

Anti-racist Masses Advance on German Islamophobes*

Apology to German Muslims from the PEGIDA Movement*

U.K.’s “Anti-extremism” Plan Brings Repression at Home and War Abroad*

Four Million Muslims Killed and Counting since 1990*

22 Years of Fake “Islamic Terror”*

How Many Muslim Countries Has the U.S. Bombed Or Occupied Since 1980?*

Top 10 Ways Islamic Law Forbids Terrorism*

Would Jewry Exist today if it Were not Muslims*

Mother Ashkenazi, Father Muslim – Dahlia Wasfi Argues Against Illegal Occupation

British SAS Special Forces “Dressed Up as ISIS Rebels” Fighting Assad in Syria*

British SAS Special Forces “Dressed Up as ISIS Rebels” Fighting Assad in Syria*

Remember there has been no approval from the British parliament…

British SAS soldiers detained in Basra

Truth seeker – This is not the first time that British Special Air Service (SAS) personnel have masqueraded as terrorists. Readers will recall they did exactly the same thing in Iraq. This is not a “conspiracy theory” but a matter of historical record.

On September 5, 2005, two SAS soldiers dressed as Arabs opened fire on Iraqi police after being stopped at a roadblock near Basra. After a fire fight they were arrested and taken to the Al Jameat police station where they were held under armed guard. The vehicle they had been travelling in was found to be packed with explosives and grenades.

However, later that night British troops accompanied by tanks and helicopter gunships stormed the jail where the men were being held. After demolishing walls the detained men were freed.

Are we witnessing a repeat performance with British Special Forces personnel acting as ISIS militants and attacking Syrian government forces?

By Stephen Lendman

On August 2, Britain’s Sunday Express newspaper headlined “SAS dress as ISIS fighters in undercover war on jihadis,” saying:

“More than 120 members belonging to the elite regiment are currently in the war-torn country” covertly “dressed in black and flying ISIS flags,” engaged in what’s called Operation Shader – attacking Syrian targets on the pretext of combating ISIS.

Maybe covert US Special Forces and CIA elements are involved the same way. During Obama’s war on Libya, Britain deployed hundreds of Special Forces Support Group (SFSG) paratroopers – drawn from SAS (Special Air Service) and SBS (Special Boat Service) personnel.

Around 800 Royal Marines and 4,000 US counterparts were on standby to intervene on short notice if ordered.

The latest revelation comes two weeks after learning Prime Minister David Cameron last year approved British warplanes joining U.S. ones in bombing Syria despite parliamentary rejection in August 2013.

At least part of its current covert ground operation is under US command – so-called “smash” units traveling in pickup trucks able to launch mini-UAVs to scan terrain for targets to attack.

Over 250 U.K. (and perhaps U.S.) specialists are involved to provide communications support, the Sunday Express explained.

British Defense Secretary Michael Fallon said “(o)ur actions and surveillance capabilities are freeing up other countries to strike in Syria.”

UK SAS forces are in Saudi Arabia training anti-Assad terrorists along with US operatives doing the same thing – including in Turkey, Jordan, Qatar and perhaps Israel.

US and UK claims about training so-called “moderate” rebels reflect smoke-screen cover for working directly with ISIS terrorists – trained, armed and funded abroad, funneled cross-border into Syria to fight Assad, now with US/UK and Canadian air support along with covert commandos on the ground.

The Express cited former British Army General David Richards saying “tanks will roll” as part of UK operations in Syria.

A separate article discussed US airstrikes defending ISIS terrorists serving as US foot soldiers against Assad.

The Wall Street Journal reported what appears ominously like prelude to Libya 2.0 – falsely claiming Obama authorized airstrikes against Syrian forces if they attack (nonexistent) US-supported “moderate” rebels.

Separately, Turkish media reported President Recep Tayyip Erdogan saying Putin may have softened on Assad. (H)e may give up on” him.

Obama said he was “encouraged by the fact that Mr. Putin called him (in late June) and initiated the call to talk about Syria.”

I think they get a sense that the Assad regime is losing a grip over greater and greater swaths of territory inside of Syria and that the prospects for a (jihadist) takeover or rout of the Syrian regime is not imminent but becomes a greater and greater threat by the day. That offers us an opportunity to have a serious conversation with them.

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said both leaders discussed combating terrorism – especially the Islamic State.

“The Russian view is well-known,” he explained. “(I)t was reiterated by (Putin) during (his) conversation” with Obama. It hasn’t changed.

Putin opposes outside interference by any nations in the internal affairs of others. He supports the sovereign right of Syrians and other people to choose their own leaders and legislators.

Putin aide Yury Ushakov said “the current leadership of Syria is one of the real and effective forces confronting the Islamic State.”

Nothing indicates less Russian support for Assad.

Source*

Related Topics:

British Pilots Bombing Syria in Secret*

State Dept. No Legal Authority for US Airstrikes Supporting Syrian Rebels*

British Government Firms Behind ISIS Oil Sales*

ISIL Leaders Traveling via US Air Force in Iraq*

U.K.’s “Anti-extremism” Plan Brings Repression at Home and War Abroad*

Are ISIS Backers Attempting to Revive the Ailing Beast?*

The First U.S. invasion of Haiti (1915) Remembered*

The First U.S. invasion of Haiti (1915) Remembered*

By G. Dunkel

The United States began its military occupation of Haiti a century ago, sending an armed force ashore on July 28, 1915, just south of Port-au-Prince.

A bit earlier, a raiding party of U.S. Marines had stolen Haiti’s gold reserve of about $500,000 and turned it over to First National City Bank in New York — now Citibank.

In Haiti and its Diaspora, activists held demonstrations and conferences to mark this hundred-year anniversary. In New York, a conference and cultural evening were held in the Haitian community and at John Jay College.

Given the significance of the present mass expulsion of Haitians and Haitian-Dominicans from the Dominican Republic, some of the speeches were in Spanish while others were in Creole, French and English.

Historical background to the occupation

Haiti was the second country in the Western Hemisphere to gain its independence. After a hard-fought, 12-year-long struggle against France ended in 1804, slavery was eradicated and the slave owners expelled from the country.

The U.S. sent its first foreign aid — $750,000 worth of food and arms — to the slave owners in Haiti to put down the revolt. At that time, $750,000 was big money. The U.S. Constitution enshrined slavery and U.S. leaders held up Greece and Rome, whose economies and societies depended on slavery, as models for the state they were building.

The U.S. didn’t recognize Haiti as an independent country for 60 years, actively working to keep Haiti diplomatically and economically isolated. U.S. slave owners were extremely worried that Haiti’s example might be contagious, especially since 10,000 whites had fled from Haiti to the U.S.

Haiti’s “original sin,” in the opinion of many Haitian historians and activists, was becoming the only country to have had a successful slave revolution.

Opposition in both Haiti and U.S.

Justifications for the U.S. occupation, which lasted until 1934, were filled with lies and outright falsehoods.  President Woodrow Wilson openly declared its purpose was to “establish peace and good order” and “has nothing to do with any diplomatic negotiations.” But his orders to the admiral running the operation involved changing Haitian law to protect U.S. and other foreign interests.

The U.S. invoked the Monroe Doctrine to justify its violation of Haitian sovereignty and forced the Haitian Parliament to agree to a 10-year treaty that made Haiti a U.S. political and financial protectorate.

The occupying Marine forces came from the U.S. South, where anti-Haitian sentiment and racism were at high levels. The Marines forced Haitian peasants, the vast majority of the population at that time, into work gangs to build roads, bridges and dams.

Their treatment was so rotten that it provided the impetus for a revolt of the cacos, armed peasant guerrillas, under the leadership of Charlemagne Péralte and Benoît Battraville. This revolt lasted, even after the execution of Péralte and Battraville, until 1921. Even after the end of the armed resistance, popular opposition, sparked by nationalist students and by the formation of the Haitian Communist Party under Jacques Roumain, intensified, until the U.S. finally withdrew its troops in 1934.

The first opposition in the United States came from the Black community and was part of the NAACP’s international work.  According to Mary Renda’s book “Taking Haiti,” the U.S. Communist Party, mainly working through allied groups, played a prominent part in organizing this opposition. The occupation of Haiti, and of the Dominican Republic, were issues in the presidential campaigns of the 1920s.

Withdrawing U.S. Marines didn’t really end U.S. control over Haiti. The National Guard, which became the Haitian army, was formed and trained by the Pentagon. It supported the reign of the Duvaliers, father and son, from 1957 to 1986. It then sponsored, maneuvered and supported various military regimes until the elections that brought Jean-Bertrand Aristide into the presidency in 1991. It then supported and helped organize the two coups against him.

Since 2004, a United Nations military force called Minustah has occupied Haiti. It functions as a veil for U.S. troops, which could be quickly sent in if Washington felt it necessary. For example, 25,000 U.S. troops arrived in a few days after the earthquake of 2010 wiped out the U.N.’s command.

Beyond exercising military and political rule over Haiti, U.S. rulers want to humiliate it, pretending it can’t run its own affairs without outside assistance, and discount and deprecate its culture.

The Haitian progressive movement has organized protests of 100,000 people or more in Port-au-Prince and nationwide, even though most Haitians live without reliable electricity or telephone service. They can certainly organize themselves.

Their culture is alive and vibrant, as the poets and musicians who mixed Creole, French and English in their presentations in New York demonstrated. Long live a free and independent Haiti

For more information, see the book “Haiti: A Slave Revolution,” which can be read online at http://www.iacenter.org/haiti/.

Source*

Related Topics:

Controlling Haiti

Controlling Haiti’s Gold

The UN is Asking for U.S$40mn for Haiti!

100,000 Haitians Say: End Occupation, Remove Puppet Government*

Haiti: The Divine Right to Enslave Others*

Haitians Sue UN over Cholera Epidemic*

Haiti Puppet Government Failed to Silence Aristide’s Influence*

Fearing Aristide, the Illegal Haitian Government Continue to Persecute Him*

J.C. Duvalier: An Evil Cloud Over Haiti Comes to an End*

U.N. ‘Peacekeeping’ Force Open Fire on Protesters in Haiti*

From Child Trafficking to Head of U.N. Ops. in Haiti

Presidential ‘Hopeful’, H. Clinton Gold Digging on 100,000 Haitian Deaths*

What They Haven’t Told You about Climate Change*

What They Haven’t Told You about Climate Change*

Since time immemorial, our climate has been and will always be changing. Cofounder of Greenpeace, Patrick Moore explains why “climate change,” far from being a recent human-caused disaster, is, for a myriad of complex reasons, a fact of life on Planet Earth.

Source*

Related Topics:

Paris Climate Change Conference shows Road to NWO Weather Control*

Geoengineering Climate Change*

Sun’s Magnetic Field 230% Stronger and Affecting the Entire Solar System*

State Dept. No Legal Authority for US Airstrikes Supporting Syrian Rebels*

State Dept. No Legal Authority for US Airstrikes Supporting Syrian Rebels*

The US has been carrying out airstrikes against ISIS in Syria for almost a year, and the latest decision to bomb Syrian government forces in order to “protect” US-trained “moderate rebels” does not require any additional legal justification, the State Department believes.

Since the US-backed rebel groups in Syria are operating in the “lawless area” of the country, they are under the pressure from “a lot of different forces,” US State Department deputy spokesperson Mark Toner told RT’s Gayane Chichakyan while trying to explain the legal basis for the change in US policy.

I frankly don’t know what the legal authority is,” Toner said, adding that the situation in Syria remains “complex and fluid.”

He clarified that Washington did not authorize itself to “go after Assad government forces,” insisting that such bombings would take place only in the “hypothetical” case that the US-backed militants would come under fire from Syrian forces.

“We’ve been carrying out airstrikes in that region for many months now, almost a year – and the same – in defense of these groups, but also to help them gain territory back from ISIL,” the spokesman stated, referring to Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) by the administration’s standard acronym for the militants.

“Any type of effort to protect them from Syrian forces would be defensive in nature,” he claimed. “But I’m not going to talk about the legal framework for it.”

When pressed to admit that the latest announcement is a major change in US policy in Syria, Toner said he would “respectfully disagree.”

“There’s no change in the legal framework,” he said. “Our main goal is to take the fight against ISIL. Nothing’s changed in that regard.”

According to US officials the Pentagon was authorized by President Obama to protect Syrian rebels trained by Washington by bombing any force attacking them, including Syrian regular troops. However, neither the Pentagon nor the White House officially commented on the decision about the new broader rules of engagement. So far the US has been avoiding direct confrontation with the forces of President Bashar Assad.

Pentagon has been planning to have 3,000 fighters trained by the end of 2015, but according to WSJ finding “moderate” enough applicants without ties to hard-line groups turned out to be a heavy task. Reportedly, fewer than 60 fighters so far have been trained. However, at least five of them were captured or killed in an Al-Nusra Front attack last week.

September will mark one year that the US-led coalition started bombing the positions of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. Still, some commentators claim that the US anti-IS campaign in Syria as nothing more than a move to eventually allow the US military to oust President Assad through less direct means.

Source*

Related Topics:

U.S. Excludes Syria When Syria has Made Great Strides against ISIL*

U.S. Threaten Air Power in Syria while Supporting ISIS, and Attacking anti-ISIS Elements*

China Warns Russia That “State Of War” Now Exists With the U.S.*

A Meteorite or not a Meteorite Causes Serious Impact in Iran*

An Incredible System that Generates Electricity from Living Plants*

An Incredible System that Generates Electricity from Living Plants*

If the organic matter plant given back to the soil is used, over time does the soil end up being less sustainable?

By Amanda Froelich

This Dutch start-up has developed a way to use living plants as a continuous source of clean energy

A Dutch start-up has developed a way to use living plants as a continuous source of clean energy – all that is needed is a light source, carbon dioxide, water, and a field or patch of plants.

The company is called Plant-e, and it is showing the world how easy it can be to bring electricity to isolated regions currently without power.

As shared in the video above, the system works best in wetlands or watery fields like rice paddies. Also, it doesn’t matter if the water is brackish or polluted. This means that areas unsuitable for growing crops could be repurposed as a power source.

How does it work? 

Based on natural processes, electrons are harvested from the soil and electricity is produced while plants continue to grow! It might sound too good to be true, but it absolutely is not.

As Next Nature shares, the theory behind the Plant-e system is simple. When a plant creates food using photosynthesis, a large portion of the organic matter generated is actually excreted by the roots into the soil. That same organic matter then gets consumed by microorganisms living in the soil, which release electrons as a by-product of this consumption. By placing an electrode near the roots, it then becomes easy to harvest this waste energy and turn it into electricity.

In addition, the plants are left unharmed during the entire process. In fact, tests show that the plants will continue to grow normally in the presence of electrodes, providing a constant source of power day and night. Combined with lamps powered by salt water, off-grid locations may have access to sustainable energy sooner than predicted!

At present, a prototype green roof utilizing this technology is already being developed and tested in the Netherlands. If all goes well, the Plant-e team hopes to utilize this system to harvest a significant amount of energy – maybe even enough to power a house. At present, they have been able to use the technology to generate enough energy to power a cell phone – but time will no doubt allow the company to perfect its process.

The amount of renewable energy sources being developed is astonishing; perhaps very soon in the near future technologies like solar and wind power may be merged with a system like this, completely eliminating humanity’s dependence on fossil fuels.

Source*

Related Topics:

Water Pipes that Generate Electricity in Portland*

Wind Power Behind Denmark’s Production of 140% Its Electricity*