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Monthly Newspaper


Vol.17 Issue No.182


November 2011 Dhul-Qadah / Dhul-Hijjah


Spirit of “Moving Forward” Pervades Arab American Celebration New America Media, News Feature, Suzanne Manneh

said San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee, welcoming the audience in Arabic.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Approximately 500 people gathered at City Hall to celebrate the citywide third Annual Arab American Heritage month.

Lee mentioned the recent “spotlight on the Arab community,” referencing the current political and social uprisings taking place in the Arab world, but he emphasized that in San Francisco, diversity is embraced.

Shadi Elkarra, chair of the Arab American Heritage Month committee, organized the event in partnership with the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Services. “If I may say, Ahlan wa sahlan,”

Al-Mu’minah Team Wins Award at Komen Race for the Cure 2011


“Here in San Francisco we have a tradition,” he said. “Particularly when it comes to immigrants, and that tradition is we learn from our immigrants, where they come from, who they are and what they want to do. That’s the beauty of being here in San Francisco. That’s our strength, and that’s why we have these wonderful celebrations,” he said. Lee also congratulated the Arab American community for their leadership in small business, politics and technology innovation in San Francisco, and the Bay Area. According to the Arab Cultural and Community Center of San Francisco,


Are Muslim organizations giving enough importance to Islamic art to showcase a positive image of Islamic culture and art? Yes


Vote on

Last month’s results: Do you believe American-Muslims have less freedom of speech in the US today?

Yes 80%

No 20%

Continued on page 7

Peer Pressure in High School


Your Ticket to Fixing Your Immigration Status”

From Tahrir With Love

Libya and Iraq: Mirror Images in the Grip of Big Oil




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An Arab music orchestra performed on the grand staircase of the building’s rotunda, accompanied by vocalists wearing colorful dresses with elaborate embroidery, and folkloric dancers from two different troupes. Flags from the Arab world’s 22 different countries hung from above the staircase and the aroma of Arabic appetizers, such as mini spinach pies and meat pies filled the area. There was also an exhibit of contemporary Iraqi Art on display, courtesy of

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TERMS USED IN THIS PAPER Alhamdulilah: Praise God Allah: Arabic word for God Fatwa: Islamic decision based on Shari’a Hadith: Sayings of the Prophet Mohammad Hajj: Pilgrimage to Mecca Halal: Allowed in Islam Halaqa: Group study Haram: Prohibited in Islam Hijab: Head cover for women Hijra: Migration of the Prophet from Mecca to Madina Imam: Islamic scholar Iman: Faith Inshallah: God willing Madina: City near Mecca in Saudia Arabia Masjid: Place were Muslims gather for prayer and studies Mecca: City in Saudi Arabia where Prophet Mohammad was born Pbuh: Peace be upon him Quran: Islam’s Holy book Shahadah: Is saying “I accept Allah as the one God and Mohammad as his messenger” when someone accepts Islam. Sharia’: Islamic law Shura: A council of Muslim scholars (SWT) Subhanahu Watala: Praise be to Allah Taqwa: God consciousness

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Deadlines for submission of letters is the 20th of every month, and for advertisements by the 25th. Only letters and articles submitted on disk or email will be accepted for review. The Publisher reserves the right to refuse any letters, articles or advertisement or any other material. The Publisher will not be liable for more than the advertisement cost in case of an error. The Muslim Voice is not responsible for the contents of advertisements or articles nor endorses them in any way or form.

Al-Mu’minah Team Wins Award at Komen Race for the Cure 2011 Muslim Voice By Hasana Abdul-Quadir Decked out in silly and fun pink gear, Muslim men and women of all ages and races gathered to represent Al-Mu’minah’s “Team Muslim Women Race for a Cure,” for their 11th time in the Susan G. Komen breast cancer walk. The team was formed in 2001 after the September 11th attacks in New York. A group of sisters in the AlMu’minah group decided that the attacks were not a reason to hide; rather, they should be a reason for Muslims to reach out to their communities as neighbors. The drive for their participation in this particular event came when two local Muslim women passed away from breast cancer. “Prior to officially starting the team, Marci Hadley-Mairel and I walked together in honor of my Grandmother who passed away from breast cancer,” explained team Captain, Zarinah Nadir. “But, after the sisters passed away in our community and 9/11 happened, as leaders of Al-Mu’minah, we decided we should encourage the community to come out in full force.” Nicole Hadley, an active Al-Mu’minah member, explained that “As Muslims... we tend to stick close to our community. We do our own events, set up our own volunteer efforts and focus on things that specifically affect Muslims,” she said. “We should and must do those things, but what I love about this event is that it allows us to step outside our community and join a larger movement. ” But not only does this event help Muslims become more active in the wider community, it also gives us a presence among our neighbors. Each year at the race, some young men on AlMu’minah’s team carry the team banner high above their heads for all cameras to record and for all people to see. “...When our brothers walk under the banner of ‘Team Muslim Women Race for a Cure,’ it immediately dispels the myth that all Muslim men oppress Muslim women,” said Nadir. “Our brothers walk side by side and even hold the banner for us. It’s a huge da’wah effort all around,” she explained. The brothers feel strongly about this representation as well. “Although the banner doesn’t weigh much, what it

stands for is heavy. To be a man on the “Team Muslim Woman Race for the Cure” is an honor,” said banner-bearer and 10-year participant, Ahmed Khalil. In addition to the long-time participants, first-timers came out and enjoyed the event as well. New to the team, Dalia Bedair participated in the race last year in California, but was excited to hear about Al-Mu’minah’s team in Phoenix. “I had a great time with the group. At Fajr time, I met some team members at ICC, we took a group photo and made dua’a before departing,” explained Bedair. “I loved the fact that the beginning of the day started with remembering Allah (swt) and asking Allah (swt) to...alleviate the pain of anyone who is suffering from cancer. Having that focus was extremely inspiring.” And Alhamdulillah, after 11 years of participation in this largest fitness event in the nation, Al-Mu’minah’s team (totaling 123 members this year), was given an award for the Biggest Family and Friends Team. “The idea that the Muslim community came out to support such a worthy cause and were recognized for doing so was a great sense of pride and happiness for me!” exclaimed Bedair. Such awards are integral in focusing a positive spotlight on the Muslim community and combating Islamophobia.

As team Captain, Nadir spoke about the award’s great significance, saying, “It’s a blessing to see that our community showed up and answered the call to join the team. It’s a blessing to see...that they are willing to sacrifice their time for this cause and to support me.” As called for by tradition, many of the teammates finished off the morning with brunch at IHOP in Tempe. But even with the fun and lightheartedness of the event, it signified a great cause. Nadir asks of the Muslim community “ remember that cancer knows no religious or ethnic barrier.” It is a human issue, and everyone should find a way to get involved in combating it. “If you are too tired or lazy to join , you can still partake in the “Sleep In for the Cure,” where you just make a donation [to the cause], but do not have to participate in the actual race,” explained Khalil. “But you’ll be missing out on an experience of a lifetime.” With the culmination of another successful year in the race, Captain Nadir, on behalf of Al-Mu’minah, encourages even greater community involvement. “Al-Mu’minah invites everyone to join us next year, men, women, and children under the banner Team Muslim Women Race for a Cure next October 2012.”

3 Peer Pressure in High School “The 212(d)(3) Waiver May Just Be Your Ticket to Fixing Your Status” LOCAL

Muslim Voice

By: Sumbal Akhter

The Muslim youth of today may endure many challenges while in school. They may feel the peer pressure to partake in the “3 D’s”: drinking, dating and doing drugs. Through these frenzied four years of schooling, one young Muslim, Aminah Shakoor, keeps a clear perspective and offers valuable insight into the sometimes tumultuous world of high school:

“High School is a place where peer pressure and stress is rampant, where drugs and alcohol are experimented with, and where relationships are the rockiest. Personally, I have grown quite a lot throughout my experience at high school. I began to wear hijab in eighth grade, but eighth grade was a breeze. Ninth grade was where things took a dramatic change, I had been exposed to a lot in middle school, but I wasn’t prepared for what high school would teach me. I do remember resenting hijab because I just wanted to be normal. I wanted to be like everybody else, because being different was too stressful. One of the biggest lessons I learned in high school was; sit back, watch, laugh, but don’t partake in the crazy things because you’ll end up in a huge, hot mess. I learned to not get involved. Many friends of mine, would drink, do a whole lot of drugs, and just break laws in general, but I always stayed grounded. I think it was my pride and personal morals. I wore hijab; I didn’t want to be a hypocrite. I did have many opportunities to partake in these temptations. However, as I look back and reflect I am so thankful that God gave me the strength to resist. Drugs, alcohol, and meaningless “intimate” relationships will never numb pain or fill a desire, it only deepens it. Remember that. Now, sophomore year was a different

battle. I didn’t understand why I couldn’t date. I know many Muslims who do date, and you know what? If you date, that’s between you and God. Dating would not work for me at all. I have killed many pet fish and plants, and concluded that Aminah Shakoor my pet fish and hypothetical boyfriend would end up in the same place. I’m clearly not serious or responsible enough for an actual relationship. I personally believe that in high school, females and males are just looking for different things. Statistics and studies would agree with me. So what’s the point? We’re looking for different things and we’d just be wasting each other’s time. I’d rather have a guy respect me for my morals from afar, than just be one of his escapades that he’d forget. I slowly began connecting and understanding why resisting these things would benefit me in the long run. It resulted in no drama, no fights, and no guilt. Junior year is the year I’m in right now. I woke up on the first day of school of Junior year and told myself to get it together. We’ll see how that goes. So in short, just know that peer pressure to be someone else is ridiculous. Why would you want to be someone who doesn’t even know themselves? No one knows who they are in high school. I mean, I wake up every morning thinking I’m Patrick Star. Don’t give into temporary satisfactions, because they’ll leave you lonelier than you ever were. Just remember to always stay grounded and trust Allah, He knows what He’s doing, even if you feel like He’s punishing you, He’s probably not.”


Muslim Voice

are extremely high.

By Eric Bjotvedt Section 212(d)(3) of the Immigration and Nationality Act is a very broad waiver provision that allows individuals trying to gain admission into the United States as non-immigrants to overcome any ground of inadmissibility, except for grounds relating to foreign policy considerations and participation in Nazi persecutions. The waiver is available to most people who are inadmissible to the United States, but the waiver must be attached to a nonimmigrant visa. So, for example, anyone who has been ordered removed from the United States for a criminal conviction or for staying in the US for longer than allowed who now has an offer of employment from a US company can petition for an H-1B visa. But the individual must depart the US before applying, and this is where it gets tricky. It gets tricky because there is no guarantee the waiver will be approved since a favorable decision on the request lies solely within the discretion of the government. So, if an individual is in the US without status, but he or she wants to gain legal status, he or she will have to depart the US and return to his or her country to apply. With no guarantee of success, the decision to leave the US after living here for so many years, especially if you arrived as a minor, becomes, understandably, very difficult. The significance of this waiver, however, cannot be taken lightly because it includes few statutory grounds of ineligibility and your chances of success

In making its decision on the waiver application, the government must consider and evaluate the risk of harm to society if the person is allowed to enter the US. The government must also consider and evaluate the seriousness of the person’s prior immigration or criminal law violations, if any, and the person’s reasons for wanting to enter the US. In fact, the consular officers abroad who make the waiver decisions generally do recommend a waiver be granted for any legitimate purpose such as family visits, medical treatment, or business related trips etc. as per their office’s employee manual. Person’s with criminal records, however, can expect to be required to show evidence of their rehabilitation. For people who have been removed from the US, they will also be required to ask for permission to reapply for admission into the United States after their deportation or removal by using Form I-212 if they are asking for the waiver within five years of their deportation/removal (or twenty years in the case of an aggravated felon). The benefit of the 212(d)(3) waiver lies in the fact that a broad range of people can be eligible for it. The applicant must, however, also be eligible for a nonimmigrant visa. If you are inadmissible to the United States with no other way to return to the United States, the 212(d)(3) waiver may just be your ticket to fixing your status as you wait inside the United States for a favorable change in the law and as you ensure family unity. I invite you to share your thoughts about your experiences with immigration authorities in your case and ask any questions you may have by contacting me at All questions are confidential and all answers are free.

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Day of Dignity 2011 Hosted in Phoenix and Nationwide Muslim Voice By Hasana Abdul-Quadir In today’s economy, homelessness and poverty are the realities for tens of thousands of Americans throughout the nation. Homeless people find themselves in a position where all their belongings can fit into a single bag; where they must worry when they will next eat; where their future is only a big question mark. Yet, even though they may have lost their homes and livelihoods, some are reminding them that there is at least one thing that no human being should ever have to lose: their dignity. Islamic Relief USA hosted its annual Day of Dignity event across 15 cities nationwide on October 1, 2011 in an effort to bring a sense of self-worth back to people who have lost everything. Hosted at the Lodestar Day Resources Center in Downtown Phoenix in partnership with the Cultural Cup Food Bank. It featured a variety of programs and activities for the less fortunate in order to “... preserve the inherent worth and dignity of all peoples, to promote compassion for our homeless brothers and sisters, and to show unity amongst people of faith by working together,” said one of the event planners, Tayyibah Amatullah. Volunteers gathered on that sunny Saturday morning to serve around 1500 people. The beneficiaries ranged from young adults to the elderly. For volunteers, serving others at this event helped them to empathize with the recipients: “One thing that surprises me is how recently some of the people became homeless. A few of them I talked to told me it was only a few weeks, months, etc [ago]. It made me realize how quickly someone’s life can change unexpectedly,” said volunteer, Haneen Odeh. But not only did local community members volunteer, but so did actual beneficiaries from the shelter. Some even had missing limbs and were in wheelchairs, but they still felt grateful and showed that everyone has something to contribute. The event featured musical performances, t-shirt painting, manicures, showers, hair cuts, snacks,

and beverages. “...The...manicures [were] relaxing for them...and the women were so excited to be pampered,” Odeh recalled. The attendees were also provided with essential living supplies, such as soap, towels, socks, winter gloves, and reading glasses. They also had the opportunity to participate in a raffle to win prizes, and to receive health and wellness information. With all the fun and peace at the event, the Day of Dignity was clearly a stress reliever for many people. In one captivating moment of a singing performance, one of the attendees walked up to the front of the lawn to spontaneously sing with the performer, reveling in the encouragement from other attendees in the audience. The joy and soul of the occasion was clear in their eyes, many of them swaying to the music, overcome with feeling. Alhamdulillah, the event went smoothly and all the participants enjoyed themselves, but it took a significant amount of work to get there. Zarinah Awad, Islamic Relief’s Phoenix City Coordinator, attended a training in Washington D.C. in July to prepare for the event. In addition, about 75 volunteers worked actively to keep the program running. At the headquarters of Islamic Relief, workers “had to coordinate the national plan, identify partners to work with, teach them each about the Day of Dignity, and solve the countless issues that go along with organizing a big decentralized event like this,” said Islamic Relief D.C. representative, Tamana Yousefi. Yousefi flew to Phoenix from Washington D.C. to attend the Day of Dignity program here. But with all the effort put into this event, some still question what kind of lasting impact this event makes on the community of recipients. To that, Amatullah answered, “Several individuals have gotten encouragement from our event. One year a client told us he rediscovered his talent for art. This helped him get a job and get connected with other art festivals in the Valley.” In the end, Awad expressed her heartfelt feelings about this cause, addressing both the lessfortunate and the fortunate. “We want people to know that people care about you. We hope to encourage people to look for ways to help others out of this condition.”


CAIR-AZ Participates in Interfaith Forum on Wage Theft Contributed By Imran Siddiqui

PHOENIX, AZ, the Arizona chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR-AZ) attended an interfaith forum, regarding workers rights, specifically wage theft - a rampant problem in Arizona and nationwide. The event was hosted by the Arizona Worker’s Rights Center along with the Arizona Interfaith Movement at the Cutler Plotkin Jewish Heritage Center in Phoenix. The panel featured local faith leaders, along with members from the Worker’s Rights Center. One of the most chilling testimonials came from a member of the Worker’s Center, named Jose. As an immigrant from Honduras, Jose told a story that has become all too common for immigrants of all backgrounds. He came to this country to build a better life for his family, but ultimately found himself working for below minimum wage, without access to basic human necessities for over a decade. All told, Jose was deprived of around $162,000 from his employer, who did not afford this immigrant worker the same

rights that are afforded to all Americans by law. Jose has found refuge in the Worker’s Center, which is working to ensure that these violations are prevented in the future. Although many may not understand the gravity of issues such as worker’s rights and Islam, in reality the issue is vital for Muslims to grasp from a religious perspective - because it directly affects members of our community as well. CAIR-AZ Chairman Anas Hlayhel was able to succinctly and thoroughly outline the Islamic perspective on worker’s rights through a variety of Hadiths of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and examples from the Quran as well. The audience was able to hear a strong correlation between piety for the sake of God, and a hard day’s work. It is reported that Muhammad, the Prophet of Islam, has said, “Give the employee his wages before his sweat has had time to dry”. CAIR-AZ’s representatives will continue to work hard to represent the community in all areas of human rights, and appreciate the warmth and fellowship offered by the hosts of this event.

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Radical extremism costs human life in Mogadishu, Somalia Muslim Voice By: Mohamud Shalab I would like to express my condolences to all innocent graduating students who were on a scholarship to Turkey and their parents, who got killed earlier this month in what’s described as one of the worst attacks since 2007. On Tuesday October 4th 2011, a bomb detonated near the ministry of education, in Mogadishu, Somalia. The bombing killed at least 70. It came after a tranquil time period when the al Shabab withdrew their troops from the city. Al Shabab militant forces have confirmed that they are the ones who orchestrated it. The intended purpose of the attack was to send a message to authorities that Al Shabab would never stop fighting to destroy and shed blood and tears from what’s left of the Somali Nation. It is a litmus test for those autonomous and peaceful regions such as Puntland and Somali land. Somali land is democratic and relatively calm. The reason for this is because there is excellent coordination between the general public and the government in which the public recognizes the proper authority and notifies them about any threats to themselves or their security. Puntland, as well is a diplomatic region, they enjoy peace and security. However, larger cities such as Bosaso and Galkayo are not in the same status as they do not have appropriate security, there is a lack of coordination between the government and the general public. They must work together, otherwise they will fall in a trap and they will pay the price. For years in mainstream media, Islam has become synonymous with terrorism. However, many Muslim

leaders, as well as ordinary Muslims have denounced the act of terror. One of the main arguments of those who claim that terrorism is necessary, is the war in the time of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), but what they fail to realize is that these wars were for self-defense. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) never

started wars or attacked innocent people without merit. “The people of the book”, in the Quran are the followers of Moses which are the Jews and the followers of Jesus (pbuh) Christians and the followers of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) which are the Muslims. These three monotheistic religions share common grounds, this is an expression of unification; it shows that people of other religions are not

enemies to Muslims. There are some verses in the Quran that condemn terrorism and unnecessary violence. In section 5 verse 32 it reads “if anyone slays a person, unless it is for murder or for spreading mischief in the land it would be as if he slew all people, and if anyone saves a life, it would be as if

Muslims must take part in an interfaith dialogue so that they can raise awareness about the issues and treat them in a peaceful way. Al Shabab routinely recruits young men and indoctrinates them by taking advantage of them and by telling them that violence is something that is necessary in the religion, however, the younger generation has to be warned against these tactics. Al Shabab would not exist if it were not for their skills in conniving and manipulating young minds. Somalis need to unite for the greater good of the country and stop these violent Islamists with their words and their actions. If Muslims do not speak out and condemn the actions of those deviated and the misguided few, then the fundamentalists will become the voice of Islam.

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Extremists believe “true Islam” is not compatible with democracy. Liberalism or secularism believes that the goal of Islam is to dominate the world. They have thoroughly misinterpreted the Quran and the teachings of the peaceful prophet (pbuh). These men as well as radical groups affiliated with a more politicized view of Islam. This religion is practiced by 2.2 billion people and just like any other religion it can be practiced all over the world however one chooses. The key to ending extremism in Somalia as well as other parts of the world lies in learning. Muslims need to educate themselves about what’s written in the Quran and the hadiths (anecdotes about the prophet Muhammad (pbuh)). There are many verses misinterpreted by both non-Muslims, as well as Muslim fundamentalists but the Quran, similar to any other historical holy book, should be contextual and only used in the right setting.

he saved the life of all people.” Verses like these show what Islam truly stands for. A suicide attack causing the deaths of hundreds innocent people is a great sin and a total violation of Quranic morality. Hijacked, has been the faith, by people with their own distorted political views on what Islam should be. In order to discredit radical extremism, we must first know where these wild fanatics shifted from. Like

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all oppressive, totalitarian operations, Islāmic extremists do not accept or allow other ideologies.

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Political Immaturity In Our Community

Arizona Immigration: Brewer’s case against feds dismissed

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket Muslim Voice By Marwan Ahmad For many years there have been attempts in our community to reach out to politicians. Some were receptive and many were not. However, the focus in many cases was photo opportunities not issues. A few years ago, I met a member of our community who is active politically and told me that they have formed a political action committee to educate Muslims about political process and candidate. I found out later that this political action committee was trying to sway people toward democrats rather than Republicans or independents. On the other hand, our traditional leaderships especially in Mosques don’t like to invite politicians thinking it violates their nonprofit status, which is incorrect. Non-profit organizations can educate their members about the political process and introduce candidates without taking political stands or side with one politician over the other. In a few cases a politician is invited and it’s usually a senator, mayor, or a governor, which is fine but how about our State Legislators, City Councilmen, or Corporation Commissioner? At the end of every meeting or visit the focus is on photo taking and not on asking tough questions. In one incident, the Islamic Community Center of Phoenix (ICCP) invited the Governor to meet the community, but they only allowed written questions to be submitted in advance fearing any “embarrassing” question by community members. Lately, community members decides to invite a Mayoral hopeful for the City of Phoenix, Greg Stanton, to a private gathering at his home and invited twenty some people including myself. I did not participate not because I didn’t want

to meet Stanton but I believed that the format was narrow minded and ineffective. With all due respect to those who attended and they are well intended, I ask why couldn’t they ask the relevant questions, why this format, and why this candidate only? Why don’t we invite all sides of any political race to a community forum and give the chance to all community members interested to participate and ask all the questions they have. When a politician meets a few individuals at a private home that speaks little of who we are and what we are capable of doing. Shouldn’t such a meeting be much larger and more diverse? Why can’t we show our strength in numbers rather than a group of hand picked individuals? What if we align ourselves with one side and this side loses, aren’t we putting all our eggs in one basket? Let’s learn from others’ experiences. What we need is a true, balanced and fair political action committee to lead the way to political activism in our community. If anyone has some type of political affiliation they need to form their own open and declared party affiliation to promote their party and its candidates. Our community members need to be educated on issues and not only personalities. We need to step away from the immaturity in our political acts especially in regards to photo opportunities. Political education should not be seasonal but rather at all times with emphasis on local and domestic politics. Political involvement should start from the bottom up from city and state representatives up to Mayors and Governors. What many forget is that politics in this country is not the same as where we came from. These politicians are servants to their communities and they don’t have the powers many think they do. These politicians don’t respect small fragile and unorganized communities; they respect a strong viable and challenging community that wants answers to improve their life in all areas.

‫بيت الطباعة‬

By JACQUES BILLEAUD Associated Press PHOENIX (AP) _ A federal judge Friday dismissed Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s lawsuit that accused the Obama administration of failing to enforce immigration laws or maintain control of her state’s border with Mexico. The dismissal by U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton comes in a counter-lawsuit filed by Brewer as part of the Justice Department’s challenge to Arizona’s controversial immigration enforcement law. The Republican governor was seeking a court order that would require the federal government to take extra steps, such as more border fencing, to protect Arizona until the border is controlled. Bolton said Brewer’s claim that Washington has failed to protect Arizona from an ``invasion’’ of illegal immigrants was a political question that isn’t appropriate for the court to decide. The judge also barred some of Brewer’s claims because the issues were dealt with in a 1994 case by Arizona and can’t be litigated again. Court precedent also requires the dismissal of some claims, Bolton wrote. ``While Arizona may disagree with the established enforcement priorities, Arizona’s allegations do not give rise to a claim that the counter-defendants (the federal government) have abdicated their statutory responsibilities,’’ Bolton wrote. Brewer said in a written statement that she wasn’t surprised by Bolton’s ruling. ``It is but the latest chapter in a story that Arizonans know all too well: The federal government ignores its

constitutional and statutory duty to secure the border. Federal courts avert their eyes. American citizens pay the price,’’ Brewer said. The Department of Justice issued a onesentence statement saying it was pleased by Bolton’s decision. The DOJ sued the state of Arizona last year in a bid to invalidate Arizona’s immigration enforcement law. Bolton put key parts of the law on hold, such as a provision requiring police, while enforcing other laws, to question a person’s immigration status if officers had ``reasonable suspicion’’ the person was in the country illegally. Brewer has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear her appeal of Bolton’s ruling. Brewer’s attorneys had argued that her lawsuit was necessary to help bring relief to Arizona from the burdens of being a busy illegal entry point into the country. The governor’s lawsuit didn’t seek a lump-sum award, but rather asked for policy changes in the way the federal government reimburses states for the costs of jailing illegal immigrants who are convicted of state crimes. Such changes would have given the state more money. Justice Department lawyers, who asked the judge to throw out the lawsuit, argued successfully that federal court isn’t the right place to consider the political questions raised by Brewer. The judge also agreed with their contention that several claims by the governor should be thrown out because a court rejected similar legal claims in a 1994 case brought by Arizona, and an appeals court decision prohibits Brewer from moving forward with her case.


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Six Steps to Achieving Your Dreams Muslim Voice By Ahmad Daniels “Hold fast to dreams for if dreams die, life is like a broken winged bird that cannot fly.” Poet and playwright Langston Hughes penned these words in 1932. Life then, like now, was challenging and many persons placed their dreams on the back burner eagerly anticipating a time that would be just right to begin the pursuit of those dreams. For some it meant getting the children out of the house and into college. For others it meant having enough money in the bank and for still others, it meant waiting for retirement. For theses persons and others, putting off their dreams amounted to the arrival of an ideal time when all the ducks would be lines up in a nice row. Does such a time ever arrive?

Superman may not be possible but doing something that has never been done before should not be a deterrent to your dreams either. For a long time it was believed that no one could run a mile in under fourminutes. The Greeks would tie horses to their runners hoping the pull would get them under the magical four minute barrier, all to no avail. That is until 1954 when Roger Bannister became the first man to break the four minute barrier. Within a month no less than 3 others went sub-four. They knew what persons have done, persons can do. You too must know that experiencing your dream is possible. It’s Necessary

2. It’s Necessary

Know that in order for you to not only be happy in life but to also be selfactualized, it is necessary for you to achieve your dream. Your very essence demands that you strike out in the direction of your dream. It is why you were placed on the planet and if you fail to seek that dream, not only will you not be all that you were meant to be, but others will fall short of being all they can be. Realization of your dream will not only touch you, but will impact scores of others in ways you can not begin to imagine. You too must know that experiencing your dream is necessary.

3. It’s You

It’s You

4. It’s Hard

Making your dream a reality is totally incumbent upon you. You! Not your mother, not your father, not your spouse, not your religious leader, but you. No one else can make your dream come true. You will certainly meet others who will serve to render words of motivation but the major thrust has to come from you; after all, it is your dream. You too must know that in order for you to experience your dream, it is up to you to make it happen.

The attainment of dreams remains elusive for many. And while the reasons may vary, what would be great assistance to having those dreams would be embracing the six steps described here: 1. It’s Possible

5. It’s Worth it 6. It’s Done It’s Possible Realizing that your dream is possible is a big step towards its achievement. If you dream of jumping off the Empire State Building without a parachute, landing on your feet and happily stroll away, that is not possible. Flying like

It’s Hard To say achieving you dream is hard would be an understatement. Know that it will be hard…very hard. But if it is hard, you do it hard. You develop the mind, body, and spirit essential to your achieving your dream. If it was easy you would have accomplished it long ago. You too must know that in order for you to experience your dream it will be hard. It’s worth It “Why bother with the dream if making it a reality is going to be so hard” you ask? Simply put, it is worth it. It’s worth it. You are not a masochist, you do not invite nor do you enjoy pain. You prefer not to “suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune” of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Yet, you are fully cognizant that what you experience on the path to your dream will be filled with challenges of all kinds and will, in the final analysis, be worth it. It is Done Long before you realize your dream, you will reach a point and know that it is done. You will be able to visualize the “finish line” and know that victory is yours. In the 1977 World Series, Yankee star Reggie Jackson hit three home runs. He would hit the ball and stand motionless watching it sail into the stands. He knew it was “done.” The rounding of the bases was merely a formality. You too will come to know the experience of knowing your dream has been achieved and you too are done and ready to begin on the next dream. Langston Hughes’ encouraging words to “hold fast to dreams” have a place in the hearts and minds of all who dare to not only know what they want out of life, but are willing to put into action steps to make their dreams a reality. To your journey!



Continued from page 1

Spirit of “Moving Forward” Pervades Arab American Celebration there are an estimated 180,000 Arabs in the Bay Area. Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, Supervisor Malia Cohen, and Supervisor John Avalos attended the festivities. Long-time community activist and leader Nabila Mango was honored at the event with a lifetime achievement award. Mango, who is of Palestinian descent and is battling stage four of breast cancer, is a mental health therapist who has served the city’s Tenderloin neighborhood for over 20 years. She also chairs several Arab arts organizations and philanthropic efforts in the community. Michel Shehadeh, executive director of the San Francisco based Arab Film Festival, also spoke at the event and received a certificate of recognition for his work in the community. “Today is a good day to be Arab,” he said. “We are proud Americans and we come from generations of builders, not destroyers,” he said. He listed several cities that Arabs have built, including Damascus, which he said is regarded the oldest city in the world. Shehadeh addressed the current political climate more candidly and said it’s important to recognize and celebrate Arab heritage, especially “in these times.” “Despite everything, we are still achieving,” he said. Despite “the nature of political climate, the attack on our community, and the pain that’s caused, we are still positive and we are moving forward,” he said.




ASAD’S Journey to the Clear Waters By Dzemaluddin Latic

Translated by Rushdy Chaushev

or part of that journey, before and after him, has been taken by many known Western free thinkers: Kant, Tolstoy, Jaspers, and others.

From the Forward To Muhammed Asad’s masterpiece “The Road to Mecca” by Dzemaludin Latic—a leading Bosnian intellectual, poet, and professor.

They understood and experienced monotheism as the true freedom of the human being, but none of them bore witness of this as well as Muhammed Asad did.

Translated from Bosnian with permission from the author by Roumen Bezergianov

Asad is indeed witnessing. I emphasize the expression “witnessing” because “The Road to Mecca” is an autobiography in Frye’s sense of this specific form of narrative prose, “the form of confession” which in the Western literature originates with St. Augustine.

Muhammed Asad converted to Islam as a young man. He was reporting for Frankfurter Zeitung from the Middle East. A Jew and an intellectual with a discerning spirit, he approached Islam and the Muslim world slowly and, what is most significant, without prejudices. We should not emphasize the fact that Asad is a convert to Islam; hundreds of so called Muslim intellectuals today reject Islam and the values it has ineffaceably brought into the lives of their people. On the other hand, it was indeed Asad, a leading scholar known in the entire Islamic world, who was a proponent of dialogue, of a real dialogue between Muslims and Ehlul-Kitab, Jews, Christians and other monotheists, and he never denied the value of Judaism and Christianity; he pointed out the secularization of the West and its consequences. Another, more famous Christian writer, Denis de Rougemont, in his “Love in the Western World” wrote that Europe lives only “under the formal sign of Christianity.” That which Leopold Weiss (Asad’s original name) found on his spiritual journey was the natural human faith, the Quranic al-fitrah (30:30). The reader is reminded of Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s “The Creed of a Savoyard Priest.” It is the same search for the truths of faith, not darkened by any intermediaries and adulterations. In addition to Rousseau, Asad’s journey,

“The Road to Mecca” is an autobiography of a person who entered Islam and stayed in Islam earnestly and forever. That autobiography has landscapes, the colors and features of a travelogue, the tension of a crime novel, and—what is the best in it—highly successful, scattered essays. But because “every culture has a right to its own literary type” (Frye), I would rather place this work under the theoretically undefined but existing Islamic literature. That means that “The Road to Mecca” belongs to the family of works in which their authors bear witness about their relation to God, Islam, the Muslims and their destinies, and in that context, about the world they live in.

region. The people who came to love Asad as a brother and with whom Asad no longer felt a stranger and a loner, are presented realistically, without idealizations… As I mentioned, the best pages of “The Road to Mecca” Asad filled with essays which spontaneously interrupt the flash-back travelogue. The writer is greatly surprised by Islam which does not separate “the holy and the profane”,

The Muslim writers do not only write about the beautiful, the “decorated”, but also about the true and the relevant. We can not list all the reasons for that here, but I think the major one is the character of Islam, a faith which so insists on truth and reality and which encompasses the entire human being…

the spirit and the body, the individual and the communal, which has created “a humanity without hurry”, a world “which is fully rounded in itself—and nevertheless open on all sides”, by Islam which is “the organic balance between reason and emotion”—“to show the human being not only how to feel but also how to live righteously.”

The Muslim world which Asad traverses during the twenties of the past century is in a flux, as always. Quiet happiness and bitter misfortunes are changing from time to time and from region to

He understood Islam as a code: all elements are in their natural places and function in ways that correspond best to human nature. Islam here is a faith of spiritual freedom (an answer to the

last chapter of Fromm’s “Escape from Freedom”) and a synthesis, for Asad personally “a road—not an end.” I would also mention several other essays: Asad’s thoughts about the Messenger Muhammed during his arrival in Medina (“Even after thirteen centuries, the Messenger’s spiritual presence here is almost as alive as it was then. Only because of him, the scattered group of villages, which was once called Yesrib, became a city loved by all Muslims to this day, in a way that that no city anywhere in the world has ever been loved… never has any man, dead for over thirteen hundred years, been loved so personally, and by so many, as he who lies buried under the great green dome”), Asad’s thoughts on the Western world’s relation to God, the political and cultural decline of the Muslims, and especially his essay about the Ka’ba with which he brilliantly completes this work. One metaphor: a water that flows and is always clear because of it, is mentioned two or three times. It is a wonderful metaphor and nicely fits the structure of the work. Its meaning is wide: “the clear waters” are: Islam, in which the human being is always advancing, the Muslims, for whom pilgrimage is an act of worship (Quran, 6:11) and for whom every place on earth is a place for prostration, the cultures of the Muslim peoples with their static “grammar” and rotating “vocabulary”, Ka’ba as a symbol of tawhid, the Islamic monotheism, around which our Ruh and our body circle, the daily prayers which consist of states of rest and states of movement, and Muhammed Asad journeyed to “the waters” which are not marked racially, nationally or geographically, but from the beginning of time flow for the human being as the most honored creature in the continuous creation of the One and Only Allah, who is Merciful.

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Sunday, November 6, 2011

• Eid prayer will be held at the Phoenix Convention Center: Time : Gathering 9:30 am, Prayer at 10:00 am Address : 100 N. 3rd Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004

• Islamic Center of North Valley: Time : Visit Address : 13246 N. 23rd Ave. 85029

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• Albanian American Islamic Center: Time : 8:00 am Address : Recreation Center, 5600 W. Union Hills Rd. Glendale, AZ

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Arizona Latinos at Center of Redstricting Process New America Media, News Report, Valeria Fernandez PHOENIX -- Minorities, and Latinos in particular, have a lot at stake in Arizona’s ongoing redistricting process, which has again thrust the state into the center of a national debate over immigration, voting rights, and the political power of minority communities. Since 2000, Arizona’s population grew by some 26 percent, according to the latest census figures from last year. Latinos accounted for nearly 40 percent of the increase, though they remain a relatively insignificant presence within the state Legislature. Advocates say that it is precisely at the state level where Latinos stand to win or lose the most. “This process will determine the distribution of power for the next 10 years,” said Linda Brown, executive director of the Arizona Advocacy Network, a nonprofit organization that works to promote electoral justice. Brown was part of a panel of ethnic media members organized by New America Media to discuss the impact of the redistricting process and what is at stake for Latinos and other minority groups. Minority-Majority Districts In 2000, Arizona voters created the Independent Redistricting Commission (IRC), composed of two Republicans, two Democrats and an Independent. The commission is charged with redrawing political maps every 10 years, and with the recent demographic shifts, the decision was made to add a ninth district to the eight that currently exist. A 30-day public comment period was opened earlier this month seeking input on draft maps put forward by the commission. Residents have until Nov. 5 to make their voices heard. IRC Vice President and Commissioner José Herrera said during the panel discussion that public opinion would be considered when drawing up the final map. He also dismissed criticisms coming from both

Republicans and Democrats, who accuse each other of hijacking the process for political gain. That became clear when the state’s Republicans lined up to denounce the draft version of the map, led by Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, who called them “a travesty” and “gerrymandering at its worst.” Arizona currently has two solidly Republican districts, one Democrat, and three acknowledged by the commission as competitive. Commissioners begin with a grid-like map of the state that they then alter to create districts with equal numbers of residents. The IRC is required to abide by the federal Voting Rights Act, which protects the influence of minority voters through the creation of “minority-majority” districts. Members are also expected to create competitive districts, where either a Democrat or Republican stands a chance to win. How to distribute the growth of Latinos so as to empower this sector and create more minority-majority districts is a key question, explained John Loredo, a political analyst and former minority Democratic leader at the state Legislature. Loredo said that he is concerned Hispanic voters may not gain as much political clout due to a push by Democrats for more competitive districts, which in his view could dilute the Latino vote. “There has to be a way for both competitive districts and minority voting rights to peacefully coexist,” said Loredo, who also noted that Latino voters are responsible for most of the growth in Democratic Party membership in the last few years. “You got the Democratic Party that is desperately trying to low ball Latino numbers, because that gives them the ability to cut Latinos into other districts that makes them more competitive from a Democratic point of view,” he said in an interview after the forum. Loredo argues the focus should first be to establish minority-majority districts that

empower Latinos before trying to create competitive districts, but not the other way around. “When politicians realize that we’re a valuable swing vote, they will start to court our vote.” As an example, he cites the current recall election against Senator Russell Pearce, the architect of SB 1070, which preceded a slew of anti-immigrant legislation appearing in states across the country. While Latinos are only a small fraction of registered voters, they are perceived as an important swing vote that could shift the outcome of the election in favor of Pearce’s opponent, Jerry Lewis. Some minority groups say the current redistricting maps look favorable. Leonard Gorman, executive director of the Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission, said during the panel that this time around they are “happy to move with the maps presented.” Navajos, who make up 4.8 percent of the population, have long struggled to defend their cultural integrity when it comes to redistricting. Gorman agreed that competitiveness is not as significant as ensuring that communities of interest are preserved and that the Voting Rights Act is respected. Arizona has a long history of discrimination against minorities, said Oscar Tillman, president of Maricopa County’s National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Tillman pointed to a pending lawsuit filed by the Arizona Attorney General, Tom Horne, who is seeking to overturn of the Voting Rights Act. (A similar suit is also pending in Alabama.) He also noted that regulations requiring voters to show ID at the polls remain an obstacle for minorities, as do attempts to include prison populations in districts where detention centers are located, since detainees are unable to vote. Bipartisan Discontent On Tuesday, a group of Republican legislators announced the creation of the Joint Legislative Committee on Redistricting that

would make recommendations to the IRC. “The primary responsibility of the IRC is to protect communities of interest and they have failed to do that,” said Senate President Russell Pearce in a written statement. “In far too many places neighborhoods that have nothing in common have been drawn into the same district.” What concerns Pearce and other Republican legislators is the creation of districts in which they will have to face other incumbents. Pearce is facing a recall election Nov. 8 in District 18. But even if he manages to keep his job under the proposed redistricting map, Pearce will end up in the same district as Republican Rich Crandall, a critic of Pearce’s harsh anti-immigrant stance. Frustrations with the IRC are not limited to one side of the aisle, however, a sign for some that the commission is doing its job. “The legislative draft map adopted today by the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission lacks competitive districts and is a giant step backward, as drawn. Without more competition, extremists will continue to get elected and will discourage Independent voters from having any say in Arizona’s future,” said Luis Heredia, executive director of the Arizona Democratic Party. Taking a more positive view, Linda Brown with Arizona Advocacy Network said having an independent commission allows ordinary citizens to participate in a process traditionally dominated by vested political interests. She added that political parties often use “communities of color as a smoke screen” to consolidate power. Given its history of disenfranchising minority voters, Arizona is among nine states that must receive pre-clearance from the Department of Justice before making any changes to election laws, including redistricting. “It is important for voters of color to get involved in the [redistricting] process,” said Brown. “This gives us an opportunity because the DOJ will look at it.”

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College prices up again as States slash budgets JUSTIN POPE

As President Obama prepared to announce new measures Wednesday to help ease the burden of student loan debt, new figures painted a demoralizing picture of college costs for students and parents: Average in-state tuition and fees at four-year public colleges rose an additional $631 this fall, or 8.3 percent, compared with a year ago.

The large increase in federal grants and tax credits for students, on top of stimulus dollars that prevented greater state cuts, helped keep the average tuition-and-fees that families actually pay much lower: about $2,490, or just $170 more than five years ago. But the days of states and families relying on budget relief from Washington appear numbered. And some argue that while Washington’s largesse may have helped some students, it did little to hold down prices.

Nationally, the cost of a full credit load has passed $8,000, an all-time high. Throw in room and board, and the average list price for a state school now runs more than $17,000 a year, according to the twin annual reports on college costs and student aid published Wednesday by the College Board.

``The states cut budgets, the price goes up, and the (federal) money goes to that,’’ said Patrick Callan, president of the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education. ``For 25 years we’ve been putting more and more money into financial aid, and tuition keeps going up. We’re on a national treadmill.’’

AP Education Writer

Why Los Angeles Occupy Oakland Faces a Troubled Police Can’t Ticket Police Dept. - and Historic Mayor Students on Their Way to School After a four-year communityled campaign, Los Angeles is moving to replace a punitive anti-truancy policy targeting the city’s most vulnerable school kids with an approach that actually works. Last week, the Los Angeles School Police Department followed the first steps of the Los Angeles Police. Earlier this year, the LAPD announced that its officers would no longer ticket students within a designated safety zone for the first 90 minutes of the school day. Now, school police officers have promised to do the same. The policy change means that two of the three law enforcement agencies that have a presence in Los Angeles Unified public schools have committed not to ticket students during this time period. “From our perspective we’re creating greater protections for black and Latino youth in LAUSD schools and supporting ending the criminalization of young people,” said Manuel Criollo, the director of organizing at Los Angeles-based Strategy Center, which spearheaded the campaign.

It used to be standard policy that Los Angeles public school students caught outside of school during the day could be slammed with a $250 ticket for violating daytime curfew laws. In order to resolve the ticket, students and their parents would have to go to court, a disruptive inconvenience that many families could barely afford. Youth advocates argued that far from being an effective anti-truancy measure, the policy actually discouraged kids from trying to get to school on time, or from going at all.

other officers, was a young African-American woman.

While President Obama was telling the small crowd at a $7500-a-plate fundraiser in San Francisco that “Change is possible,” Pooda Miller was across the bay trying to get her plate back from the Oakland Police Department. “They came, pulled out rifles, shot us up with tear gas and took all our stuff,” said Miller, at an afternoon rally condemning the violent evacuation of more than 170 peaceful, unarmed Occupy Oaklanders by 500 heavilyarmed members of the Oakland Police Department and other local departments yesterday morning.

“Who are you serving?” screamed Miller at the top of her high pitched voice, turned raspy from hours of denouncing. “You’re being used. You’re getting paid with our tax money to put down your own

With a long metal police fence separating Miller and other members of Occupy Oakland from their confiscated items— tents, water, food, clothes, medicine, plates—and now possessed by the police, Miller grabbed a big blue and white bullhorn that looked like it was almost half of her 4-foot, 5-inch frame. “Give us our stuff back! It don’t belong to you!” yelled Miller, who also expressed relief that her baby was not camped out with her that morning.

“Kids were instead getting the message that if I’m going to be five minutes late, if the bus is going to be late, if I have to drop off a sibling at school, then I should just stay at home because we can’t afford that process,” said Laura Faer, directing attorney with Public Counsel’s Children’s Rights Project. Punitive anti-truancy policies continue to be popular. This year a similar anti-truancy law that allows the state to prosecute parents of students who miss more than ten percent of their classes went into effect at the state level. Read more here.

The sound of Miller’s ire shot across the protective masks of all of the officers standing at alert on the other side of the metal police fence, but her loudest, most acidic anger was saved for the baton-wielding officer who, like herself and

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people! Why are you doing this to your own people?” Miller’s questions to Taylor about the role of race in the policing of Occupy Oakjland points to what is and will continue to be the larger question in Oakland and other U.S. cities where former “minorities” are becoming majorities: What does it mean when those charged with defending elite interests against multi-racial and increasingly non-white activists are themselves multiracial and non-white? The ongoing

protests, mayor recall, phone calls, emails and other pressure and pushback of Occupy Oakland are no longer aimed at cigar-smoking white men. They are aimed at a power structure in Oakland whose public face looks more like Miller and other non-white protesters.

Miller and others are calling for the recall of Jean Quan, who made history as Oakland’s first Asian-American mayor (full disclosure: Quan’s daughter is my Facebook friend); and they are complaining about the use of excessive police violence authorized by Interim Chief Howard Jordan, an African American. Such conflicts between former minorities are becoming the norm in what more conservative commentators call the “post-racial” era ushered in by the election of Obama. Read more here.

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Colorlines, News Report

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Libya and Iraq: Mirror Images in the Grip of Big Oil New America Media, Commentary, Behrouz Saba The U.N. Security Council’s mandate, which authorized NATO’s military operations to “protect civilians” in Libya, was just as specious as the one that allowed the Bush administration to invade Iraq to destroy stockpiles of nonexistent weapons of mass destruction. Just as George W. Bush and Dick Cheney were focused on securing Iraq’s oil for their Big Oil cronies, U.S. and NATO forces attacked Libya to take out Muammar Gaddafi, who preferred to sell his oil to Russia and China.

prosperous and productive. In fact, the more they remain mired in misery the easier it will be to exact from them better oil concessions. Sudan is spared the “Arab Spring” treatment simply because that country is sufficiently corrupt and dysfunctional to be putty in the Big Oil’s hands. America currently imports the largest portion of its oil from Canada’s ecologically disastrous shale oil extractions. Massive MENA oil

sufficiently strong to control their own oil reserves and to pose a serious threat to America’s regional hegemony. The Pentagon’s planners know very well that after many decades of abject dictatorship, in lands long beset by tribal, ethnic and sectarian rivalries, the preconditions for strong civil societies are dim at best. The idea of a Marshall Plan for MENA has been toyed with, mainly to deflect from real regional intentions. Yet even a sincere

MENA, however, largely lacks both German clarity and Eastern Europe’s enlightened receptivity. Tunisia, which held successful elections over the weekend, is small, geopolitically insignificant and holds negligible oil reserves. It may be just lucky enough to support a nascent civil society. Achieving the same will be appreciably more difficult in larger North African countries and harder still in the Middle East.

Saddam Hussein went into hiding after Baghdad fell and was subsequently looted. His capture and eventual execution came many months later. In the immediate aftermath of Gaddafi’s fall, amid all of the chaos, the only clear move was made by Tripoli to favor NATO allies as the new customers for Libyan oil. Today, NATO gloats of “no collateral damage” in its Libyan operations. Yet, an estimated 10,000 mostly civilians it meant to protect are dead, while entire cities lie in ruin. After nine years of U.S. occupation, Iraq’s economy remains in shambles amid rampant official corruption, with every sign of greater instability when the last of the U.S. troops are gone. Libya will likely remain a nearfailed state for the foreseeable future as competing political and tribal forces fight for ascendancy. Big Oil is in no hurry to see those two countries, or other oil-producing nations in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), become stable,

East Europeans were less receptive of the “velvet revolution”—presumably the model for the “Arab Spring”—which ensued after Mikhail Gorbachev as the last Soviet leader and President Ronald Reagan agreed on a geopolitical blueprint to replace the Soviet Union and its satellite nations. Yet after faltering starts, Europeans who had long suffered under communism, proved sufficiently educated, skilled and foresighted to embrace their emancipation.

reserves are earmarked for long-term exploitation when this and similar sources reach depletion. The United States and its European allies have removed such despots as Saddam Hussein, Hosni Mubarak and Muammar Gaddafi, while clamoring for the leaders of Syria and Yemen to step down under the spurious “Arab Spring” banner. Yet they have no fear that MENA nation states, in the wake of dictatorial rules, would become

rescue package is bound to fail. The United States initiated the Marshall Plan in 1947, infusing a war-ravaged Western Europe with more than $12 billion (about $107 billion today). As late as 1964, a German confided in the Polish writer Wiltold Gombrowicz, “We needed America so badly after the debacle . . . and its spirit even more than its military force and dollars. America slid over us like a steamroller, leveling, democratizing, simplifying.”

While autocrats have fallen in the African countries of Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, despots in Syria, Yemen and Bahrain have proven more resilient, partly due to a growing sense in the immediate region that years of sanctions, followed by “liberation,” have inflicted far more damage on the lives of Iraqis than Hussein’s years of tyranny ever did. Bombs a spring do not make, nor will civil societies flourish from the arid soil of hatred, ignorance and poverty. It is up to the people in the region to realize that they have to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. This is not going to be easy for nations long under the thumb of dictators, torn by internal divisiveness and haunted by the long shadow of colonialism.

Ahoy Dubai: Gulf city to expand cruise ship port By ADAM SCHRECK AP Business Writer DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) _ Dubai is significantly expanding its cruise ship port in an effort to attract more seafaring tourists to the city’s Persian Gulf shores. Dubai’s port operator DP World laid out plans Wednesday to open a second cruise ship terminal at the downtown Port Rashid by the end of 2012 to allow up to five cruise liners to dock at a time. The port can handle only two cruise ships at once now.

DP World Chairman Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem told reporters gathered at the waterfront terminal that the expansion is needed to keep up with a mushrooming demand from cruise operators hoping to anchor in the emirate. Slots for up to seven ships are envisioned for the future. Dubai’s existing cruise terminal handled 120 ships and more than 390,000 passengers in 2010, according to DP World. The city’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing expects that number to grow to 180 ships and 625,000 passengers by 2015.



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55 Israeli companies working in Iraq under assumed names

High Court rules Raed Salah is 'entitled to damages for wrongful detention' High Court rules Raed Salah is ‘entitled to damages for wrongful detention’ The Middle East Monitor (MEMO) welcomes the High Court ruling that the British government’s detention of Sheikh Raed Salah was illegal during the early part of his detention and that he is entitled to damages during that period.

illustrates the careless manner in which the British government dealt with an important and respected leader of the Palestinian movement. Dr Abdullah said, ‘this vindication of Sheikh Raed means he can in future hold his head high

After wrongfully detaining the Palestinian leader, the Home Secretary unsuccessfully tried to deny him bail. Sheikh Salah successfully applied for and was granted bail by Mr. Justice Stadlen in the High Court in July. Today’s ruling compounds the misguided approach taken towards Sheikh Salah by the British government.

The Yaqen News Agency reported that 55 “Israeli” companies were now working in Iraq under assumed names. Yaqen reported that the Zionist firms operate in a variety of fields, including infrastructure and marketing. The Zionist Mossad secret police agency had established the Kurdish Lending Bank with its headquarters in as-Sulaymaniyah in the US-founded Kurdish separatist enclave in northern Iraq. The report indicated that the Kurdish Lending Bank had a secret mission of purchasing vast tracts of agricultural land, oil fields, and residential areas in the vicinity of the cities of al-Mawsil and Kirkuk, both oil-rich cities in northern Iraq. The massive land purchases facilitate the effort by the US-backed Kurdish separatist Peshmergah militia to expel Arab and Turkoman residents of northern Iraq so that the oil-rich area can be annexed to the Kurdish separatist state under US and Zionist hegemony. Meanwhile the Zionist state exports more than $300 million in goods to Iraq annually. In addition Zionist companies obtain contracts for construction projects in Iraq, thanks to help from USAID, the American agency that oversees the allocation of building contracts in Iraq. The report indicated that one of the chief beneficiaries of the Zionist presence in Iraq has been former “Israeli” Chief of Staff Amnon Lipkin-Shahak who also formerly served as “Israeli” Minister of Communications.

At the High Court, Mr Justice Nicol, granted the leader of the Islamic Movement permission to appeal endorsing the view that Sheikh Salah was right to demand a judicial review into the legality of his detention. Whilst refusing the judicial review on the grounds of policy and legal purpose the Judge ruled that Sheikh Salah was illegally detained and ‘entitled to damages for wrongful detention’. MEMO’s director, Dr Daud Abdullah said, ‘this important judgment sends a clear message to the political authorities; that the British legal system must not be used as an instrument to suppress fundamental rights and free speech.’ Sheikh Salah’s solicitor Tayab Ali said ‘We welcome the Court’s finding that Sheikh Salah was wrongfully detained and that he should be compensated for that. We are however disappointed that the Judge refused the judicial review in respect of the statutory purpose and policy. This is a worrying first step towards a policy of preventative detention for acts that have not even been contemplated yet’. Sheikh Raed Salah was arrested from his hotel on 28th June, the night before he spoke in parliament on the subject of Jerusalem. The Israeli lobby in the UK strenuously petitioned the government to do anything ‘to prevent him from attending’. Emails disclosed in Court have revealed that the Home Secretary took just 17 minutes to decide to prevent Sheikh Salah attending and speaking in parliament in response to an unverified and inaccurate advice from the Community Security Trust.

Raed Salah with pride; knowing that two High Court Judges in Britain were willing to correct serious wrongs done against him.’ Sheikh Raed Salah is resolute in his determination to correct the allegations made against him and will now focus his appeal to overturn the deportation order in the First Tier Immigration Tribunal. Clearly proceedings to date should show the Conservative-led government that it has to act with responsibility and properly verify allegations before it yields to political lobbies set to improperly use the British government for its own political agenda.

The finding that Sheikh Salah was illegally detained

From Tahrir With Love New America Media, Editorial, Ahmed Tharwat More than 10 months after the start of the Arab Spring, when millions of Arabs took to the streets demanding change, people in America are finally waking up to the harsh reality: the biggest threat to their lives and their futures are not Arabs or Muslims. For the first time Arabs are being seen here in a positive light, an inspiration to a new movement in America that challenges the old system. Occupy Wall Street was sparked by an editorial in the Canadian magazine AdBusters calling for protests modeled on events in the Middle East. “If we want to spark a popular uprising in the West – like a million man march on Wall Street – then let’s get organized…” The same call went up from a young Egyptian activist named Asmaa Mahfouze, who called on his fellow Egyptians to turn out at Tahrir Sqaure on Jan. 25th, a date now remembered as the start of the Revolution. Like Tahrir, the protest on Wall Street began with a few hundred hard-core activists, later expanding across the country and coinciding with similar protests in Italy, England, Greece and Spain. It took Obama three weeks

before he acknowledged the Wall Street movement, saying it “reflects peoples frustration.” As if they are complaining about traffic tickets. It took two weeks for national public radio to offer more than just perfunctory coverage, while Fox News continues to insist that those protesting are just a bunch of “hippies.”

nation fed up with the financial shenanigans of Wall Street bankers and brokers, has been a no show at Zuccotti Park or at any of the other sites. The tactics used by protesters,

speak directly to the people, circumventing the traditional press. Most important has been the emphasis on adhering to Sylmayah, Sylmayah… peaceful, peaceful. As in both

in post 9/11 America. Just then two helicopters buzzed overhead above People’s Plaza, and I distinctly remembered Mubarak in his waning days sending two fighter jets over

cases, the violence has been entirely one sided, coming via the state and its official security apparatus.

Tahrir to drown out the cries of the protestors. Instead, the reaction of millions went up in one unified voice: “Hosni Etgannen, Hosni Etgannen.” Hosni is mad.

In the prophetic words of India’s Mahatma Gandhi, “First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win…” Who could have imagined that 10 years after 19 Arabs hijacked four airplanes, driving two of them into the heart of the world’s financial system, thousands of Americans would take to the street on that very same site to denounce the country’s predatory brand of capitalism? And that they would be inspired by millions of Arabs who put life and limb on the line to topple a brutal network of dictators. I will leave it to academics to debate the differences between the Arab and American springs. But without doubt, no other political group in this country or around the world has affected the Occupy Wall Street movement as the Egyptian revolution that toppled exdictator Hosni Mubarak. Even the Tea Party, once lauded for its grassroots connections to a

furthermore, bears echoes of Tahrir: the mass occupation of public spaces, as well as the changing of place names such as from Zuccotti Park to Liberty Plaza, or Hennepic County Plaza here in Minnesota to People’s Plaza. Moreover, families have come with their children, while protesters have relied on social media to

Earlier this month I went to cover the Occupy Minnesota rallies. Standing amid the crowd – awed by the diversity and palpable camaraderie – I felt myself transported back to Tahrir, a proud Arab

Ahmed Tharwat is host of BelAhdan, which appears on Minnesota Public Television’s Arab American TV. He blogs at in the middle.




Arab delegation says Syria eager to end crisis By ZEINA KARAM

on points that fulfill people demands.’’

Associated Press

Syria has rejected previous Arab initiatives, and it was not clear if this would be different, or if the regime was trying to gain time to try to crush the uprising.

BEIRUT (AP) _ Arab officials held a ``frank and friendly’’ meeting with Syrian President Bashar Assad Wednesday, the head of the delegation said at the beginning of a regional effort to resolve a bloody 7-month revolt, the most serious challenge yet to the four decade Assad dynasty. The Arab committee is trying to start talks between Assad’s government and its opponents, but protest leaders reject any dialogue with the regime while it continues its brutal crackdown, which the U.N. says has killed more than 3,000 people since March. Activists said at least 15 civilians were killed Wednesday in military operations across the country, 12 of them in the flashpoint central city of Homs. The meeting between the Arab ministerial committee and Assad came hours after tens of thousands of Syrians packed a main square in the Damascus, chanting, ``the people want Bashar Assad.’’ Assad succeeded his father, and together the family has ruled Syria for more than 40 years. Qatari Prime Minister Sheik Hamad Bin Jassem Bin Jabr Al Thani was quoted as saying that the Arab delegation felt that the Syrian government is eager to work with the Arab committee ``in order to reach a solution.’’ Sheik Hamad told reporters that the Arab committee and the Syrian government will hold another meeting on Sunday either in Syria or in Qatar. ``What is important for us is that there are no victims from any side in Syria,’’ Sheik Hamad told reporters. ``The fighting should stop and the dialogue should begin between the Syrian brothers so that, God willing, they agree

The Arab officials’ visit follows a meeting in Cairo last week by the 22-nation Arab League, which gave Syria until the end of the month to end military operations, release detainees arrested in the crackdown, and start a dialogue with the opposition.

peaceful transfer of power,’’ she told The Associated Press. ``Russia gives Bashar international protection, Iran gives him weapons, and Arabs give him time,’’ read a banner carried by protesters in northern Syria Tuesday evening. ``No dialogue with the killer of children,’’ read another. Human Rights Watch called on the

Assad still has significant support among Syrians, including those who benefited financially from the regime, minority groups who fear they will be targeted if the Sunni majority takes over, and others who see no clear and safe alternative to the president. He also still has the loyalty of the bulk of the armed forces, key to his remaining in power. The British-based Syrian Observatory

Human Rights Watch quoted Syrian activists as saying at least 186 protesters and residents have been killed in Syria since the Cairo meeting. The activists said towns and villages in southern and central Syria, as well as some areas in the north and east, closed their businesses in compliance with an opposition call for a general strike. Amateur videos showed shops closed in different parts of the country as well as counter-demonstrations to the one held in Damascus. One of the largest took place in the village of Halfaya in the central province of Hama. A giant banner raised on an electricity pole there read: ``To the Arab League. How do you want us to have a dialogue with the killer of children and women when all laws say that the killer should not be negotiated with, but put on trial?’’ The Syrian government has staunchly defended its crackdown on protesters, saying it is the target of a foreign conspiracy.

Arab ministers to demand that the government allow independent, civilian monitors into Syria to observe the behavior of security forces.

Bassma Kodmani, spokeswoman for the broad-based opposition group, the Syrian National Council, said it is ``impossible’’ to talk about a dialogue within the current security crackdown.

In a pro-government rally timed to coincide with the Arab ministers’ visit, tens of thousands of Syrians carrying white, red and black flags and posters of Assad gathered at Damascus’ Omayyad square .

``And even if the right conditions for dialogue prevail, the only thing to discuss would be a roadmap for the

The opposition says authorities regularly stage such rallies in support of the embattled leader.

for Human Rights and other rights groups said 15 civilians were killed Wednesday in shootings by security forces nationwide, including 12 in the rebellious city of Homs. The Observatory also reported 11 soldiers were killed in Hama province when the bus they were traveling in was hit by a rocket propelled grenade. The Local Coordination Committees, another activist group, also said 15 people were killed Wednesday nationwide, most of them in Homs.

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• 3 cm ginger

Servings: 4

• 3 cm galangal, peeled and sliced (laos)

• 1.10 lb beef

• 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns, crushed

• 4 cups coconut milk (made from 1 coconut if using freshly granted coconut)

• 2 cm turmeric

• 2 bay leaves (Indonesian usually use Salam leaves)

1. Grind or blend shallot, garlic, ginger, galangal, peppercorn and turmeric into paste.

• 2 kaffir lime leaves • 3 cardamom pods, bruised • 1 stalk lemongrass • 2 fresh turmeric, leaves (optional) • 4 cm cinnamon sticks • 4 red chilies, sliced (you can add more if you wish) • 1/2 teaspoon salt • 1/2 teaspoon sugar or 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar • 8 shallots, peeled and sliced • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced


2. Cut the beef into small but thick slices square. 3. Put the beef, spice paste and all other ingredients into a wok and bring slowly to the boil, stirring constantly to prevent the coconut milk from separating. Cook over low heat, stirring from time to time, until the meat is very tender and all the sauce has evaporated. 4. Continue cooking the beef, which will fry in the oil that has come out from the coconut milk, until brown. 5. Serve with warm Basmati or Jasmine plain rice.

Kung Pao Shrimp

Ingredients: • 1 pound shrimp • 1 egg white • 1/2 teaspoon salt • 2 teaspoons cornstarch • 3 tablespoons chicken broth • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar or rice vinegar • 1 tablespoon soy sauce • 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar • 1 1/2 cups oil, or as needed • 6 to 8 small red chilies, or 2 teaspoons chile paste • 1 teaspoon minced ginger • 1/2 cup cashews Preparation: Shell and devein the shrimp. Cut in half lengthwise. Lightly beat the egg

white. Marinate the shrimp in the salt, egg white and cornstarch for 15 minutes. In a small bowl, combine the chicken broth, vinegar, soy sauce and sugar. Set aside. Heat the oil. When the oil is hot, add the shrimp. Cook briefly until the shrimp turns pink. Remove from the wok. Remove all but 2 tablespoons oil from the wok. Add the chile peppers or chile paste. Stir-fry for a minute, then add the minced ginger and stirfry until it is aromatic (about 15 seconds). Stir in the cashews. Stir-fry for about 1 minute, taking care not to burn. Make a space in the middle of the wok. Add the sauce. Heat briefly, then mix in with the cashews. Add the shrimp back into the pan. Cook for 1 more minute and serve hot.


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