Middle East

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Honor is a killer. Be dishonored. Be dishonored, to save any life. Let those who need honor, delight only in this: the honor of every fellow human being.

¬†Kurdish Teenager’s “Honor Killing” Fades to Memory as Iraq Violence Swells, Huffington Post

“Dunya was very timid. She wasn’t very social, and she didn’t care about fashion,” said her mother Sahom Hassan when asked to describe her daughter, found dead on May 24. “On the day she was killed, she called me and said, ‘This is the last time you will hear my voice.'”

In Iraqi Kurdistan, suicide by self-immolation has replaced honor killing in many cases. Most often the decision is made by a woman herself either to escape a life of misery or shame, or due to pressure from her family members. The majority of these are reported as accidents. Dunya’s sister-in-law died three years ago in one such

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Fossil_Fuel-e1407859699259

Here is the excerpt of my new article published on Huffington Post.
Please check out the whole writing from here as well, and your comment is always welcome.

Managing the Madness in the Middle East

…in the long term, a world based on fossil fuels is completely unsustainable, and states and individuals must each take concrete steps to rapidly move away from their use. It is not the first time in history that a resource craved by everyone distorted all rational investment in and valuation of citizens. The less valuable that oil becomes, the more valuable will be the minds and hearts of every single woman, man and child in the region, every minority, and thus there will be clear incentives to invest in every citizen rather than sacrificing them to a god of war that is always insatiable. The god of war may have a religious body

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Nationalism and Groupthink

by mgopin on October 17, 2014 · 3 comments

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The root of this maddening reversal of the military is irrational thinking of the body politic, and the human illness of groupthink, which is in essence the scourge of nationalism and nationalist thinking. otherwise intelligent, thoughtful even nice people, becoming monstrous because the political establishment, having gotten into power through racial or national flag waving, told them that the violent path was the only one–until the day, that is, that they shrugged their shoulders, and said it was NOT the only path. Like America and the Communist domino effect in Vietnam. The outdated philosophy here, or brain fart, is nationalism. Rational self-interest is fine, but the only rational future is in the liberal, socially contracted state, without the flag-waving brain distortions.…

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International Relations and Human Relations

by mgopin on October 17, 2014 · 3 comments

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If you are in a hole with a rational actor, even if he is your adversary, help each other climb out, for the climb itself will lead to a better destination. If you are in a hole with an irrational actor, even if he is an ally, climb out yourself and let him keep digging. Why should two be buried instead of one?

 

climb

 

(Photo: The TechBistro)…

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Situation in Kobani

by mgopin on October 16, 2014 · 0 comments

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There are a great many Muslims who are about to be slaughtered. They are not Gazan, they are not dying at the hands of Christians or Jews. They happen to be Kurds and they are about to die at the hands of Muslims funded from the Gulf. I just need to share my outrage at how little traffic I see on this. And it dovetails the absence of traffic about Syrians dying in general. It seems that it only turns into global outrage when Western Christians or Jews are doing the killing. And that is unacceptable. The Abrahamic religions are not ready for power, nor will they ever be. The only way that any minority, anyone weaker, ever gets defended in history is by benevolent autocrats with a reason, or by pluralist democracies. Religion is great for the heart, let’s keep it away from guns and power forever,

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My latest article was published on Berkely Center for Religion, Peace & World Affairs at Georgetown University.
Please have a look at it from here, and your comments are always more than welcome.

Minorities,, Majorities, and Religioius Freedom: Patterns and Possibilities for Israel, Palestine, and Beyond

The history of freedom of religion in its most successful moments of impact has been the history of the empowerment of minority religions, the religions that are especially reviled by some segments of a majority. It is vital that the rights of minority religions be protected in both Israel and Palestine as a critical test of a functioning democracy. It is marker of a state in which the rule of law can be trusted to work for everyone. This means that Christians, Jews, and others must be guaranteed their rights in the new state of Palestine, and that Muslims, Christians, and non-Orthodox Jews be

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Kurds call to arms as Islamic State closes in on Syrian town.
There is going to be a massacre in the large city of Kobani in Syria, and ISIS is closing in with tanks. Tanks! Hard to spot those with stealth fighters??? Someone please explain.

Kurds Call to Arms as Islamic State Closes in on Syrian Town, Reuters

A statement issued by the YPG, the main Kurdish armed group, vowed “never ending” resistance to Islamic State in its advance on Kobani. “Every street and house will be a grave for them.”

“Our call to all the young men and women of Kurdistan … is to come to be part of this resistance.”

YPG Syria

(Photo: Basnews)

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Fossil Fuel Funds / Baking

by mgopin on October 7, 2014 · 3 comments

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FOSSIL FUEL FUNDS

As long as Sunni fossil fuel jihadi funds continue to flow there will be only two choices for the minorities of the Middle East: Autocracies or shared democracies.

BAKING

Being half baked is such a waste,
You used all those resources, only to make something inedible.
If you bake, bake all the way.
If you live, live all the way.
If you love, love all the way.

 …

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Artificial Dangers / Oil Spills

by mgopin on October 3, 2014 · 3 comments

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ARTIFICIAL DANGERS

Artificial sweeteners
are dangerous to your health,
whether they come
in the form of chemicals,
or disingenuous smiles
from artificial people

OIL SPILLS

Islamaphobia and jihadhysteria has become an excellent cover for the oil industry. Kill on the surface, cover up the toxic bedrock.

 

ISIS Iraq attack

 

(Photo: Prophecy Tracker)…

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Analysts Where Art Thou: A sad look at media

by mgopin on September 30, 2014 · 0 comments

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This is not the first time in history that jihadi armies destroyed by their own funders. Analysts!! Think! Look into conquest of Arabia at the beginning of the 20th century.

It is amazing how enthralled analysts become with trees when paid not to look at forests.

Analysts are so enthralled with all the jet toys Gulfies are throwing at ISIS they forgot to ask who financed such extremism to begin with.

I am just amazed and appalled at the lack of questions being asked about the coalition and I for one want to do anything to protect Syrians in any way possible from ISIS. And I understand what Obama is doing, but if we do not name the problem with the Gulf, we cannot escape this insanity.

Obama

 

(Photo: Los Angeles Times)

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