Friday, July 29, 2011

Exposed: The Creepiness of Alastair Crooke and the 'Conflicts Forum' Pantomime.

Michael Weiss and Hussein Ibish:

Conflicts Forum strongly advocates the narrative that the contemporary Arab world is the site of a macro-historical struggle between a “culture of resistance” and a “culture of accommodation,” meaning all moderate, secular and pro-Western forces in the region. Crooke’s attachment to Assad appears to be a function of the Syrian regime’s self-professed role as a supporter of “resistance” and its strong ties to Iran and Hezbollah.

Conflicts Forum’s documents do not reflect Western efforts to understand Islamist movements; rather, they speak in a clearly and unabashedly Islamist voice. Its advisory board includes Azzam Tamimi, a prominent Hamas sympathizer in the United Kingdom who has defended suicide bombings. It also includes Moazzam Begg, who, as London’s The Daily Telegraph recently reported, confessed in a signed statement to the FBI that he learned how to shoot guns and operate explosives at an Al-Qaeda training camp in Afghanistan.

Crooke’s and Conflicts Forum’s activities are alarming from a Western point of view, but even more so from the perspective of those interested in the spread of democracy and liberal values in the Arab and Islamic worlds, above all Arabs and Muslims themselves. What such activities champion are in fact ultra-right wing, reactionary and fundamentally totalitarian ideologies hostile to human rights in general, and more specifically to the rights of individuals, women and minorities. Crooke is evidently a spy who gladly stepped into the cold.

This man, his odious views, and his nefarious organization have had a free pass for far too long. . .

More here and here.


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