Bahrain next, as long as the Fifth fleet stay the hell out of it.
Libya, that bastard is prepared to kill all the demonstrators, but will the Egyptian army weigh into Libya ? one way of raising their popularity.
Egyptian versus Libyan forces, my money will be on the Egyptians.
Funny that Bush junior’s plan to incite democracy in the middle east seems to suddenly be coming to fruition.
Is it happening without military action – i.e. did Iraq cause this, or slow it down?
Is it happening on it’s own – if the US had left it alone, events would take their course?
Does the west have their hand in it somewhere, and they’ve finally gotten competent enough to do it without getting caught?
Murray you mean like the old regime in Egypt allowing Israeli nuclear armed subs through the Suez, that never happened did it ?
Christ the Israelis are fucking paranoid, we have to stop Islamic countries getting nukes they rant, a waste of time with Pakistan having them.
Wonder if the Pakistanis will supply Iran with nukes, then both sides can turn the Middle East into glass.
I can’t see the formation of an empire as such. There is too much rivalry & infighting now, eg Sunni & Shiite Moslems. Additionally the area is fractured along tribal lines with histories of animosity dating back thousands of years.
What I can see is a new Pan Arabian organisation controlling oil exports somewhat similar to today’s OPEC but on steroids. This would be sufficient to fulfil the Moslem dream of bringing the western powers to their knees.
According to the SST it will be New Zealand revolting over the price of milk.
>i> Rising food prices were a factor in the unrest that led to rebellions in Tunisia that flowed on to Egypt, and the World Bank has warned its monitoring indicates prices are at “dangerous levels”, with the main spikes coming in wheat and maize.
Libya. Possibly dozens dead already, probably more………try putting a cork in that bottle.
Dime – You are right abot the internet. The unemployed youth in these countries can now realise that life elsewhere is better. But don’t underestimate the influence of sattelite TV. Even in the most impoverished areas, illegal satelites bring in a whole new world to these otherwise blinded people. TV by-passes the need for literacy as well.
Liberal Democracy is advanced more rapidly by The Simpsons, Friends and (sadly) American Idol, than by anything else.
The ONE thing that the Iranian regime is too scared to ban is the Latin American day-time soaps, that are wildly popular in that country.
The protesters in Bahrain surely know that the government can’t kill all of them, but it’s tough to take that chance that you personally will be one of the ones they kill before the army/police lose their stomach for it.
It is well known that Nikolai Chauchesku allowed (even encouraged?) “Dallas” to be screened in Romania in the belief that it would show the people how horrible and decadent it was in the west. it had the opposite effect.
Last night my brother, who manages a hotel in Muscat, Oman, rang to say all was well and his guest numbers were going through the roof as people ditched Egyptian and Tunisian holidays but he’d also had instructions from one of the ministries to raise minimum wages.
He said expats aren’t too concerned at the moment but there have been blackouts of mobile phone and internet services and think that they’re government drills. Kiwis are covered by British consulates and there are preliminary evacuation plans so they’re confident that if the shit hits the fan there’ll be a British warship just over the horizon.
He also said that with the exception of Yemen the gulf state ructions seem to be different to the north Africa protests with most of the conflict in Bahrain sectarian. But he said that the real powder keg was Saudi Arabia with a large and diverse population some of whom may want their own people running the shop rather than the current mob.
But all he really rang for was to get me to tell the old lady to stop texting every hour on the hour and that no reply doesn’t mean him, the wife and the oh so precious grand kids have been kidnapped by mad Islamists.
“This would be sufficient to fulfil the Moslem dream of bringing the western powers to their knees.”
Except for the USA of course who gets all their oil from Mexico, Venezuala and Canada and who now have enough oil reserves in the Shale deposits to last for a generation…
People also forget there has been no NEW oil exploration in the US for over 25 years. Theyve got heaps hidden away and have left it that way while they use everyone elses!
The USA would be self sufficient if it could develop the Alaskan fields but they would have to work around their homegrown green luddites first. The shale deposits are promising but will take time to bring on line. Imports from south of their border may be secure at this stage but if the Arabs put the brakes on Middle Eastern production the price of imports will skyrocket.
Yes the Americans may squeak through but the European countries will be screwed. Russia is probably their only hope. As for NZ & Australia, bend over & grease up!
Libya protests analysis: ‘For Muammar Gaddafi it’s kill or be killed’
Libya’s leader faces the worst unrest since he seized power, but no-one expects him to give up peacefully
Libya’s official name is the Jamahiriya, or “state of the masses”, but 41 years after seizing power, a defiant Muammar Gaddafi still rules through secretive decision-making and as a family enterprise in which his sons play leading roles.
Now facing the worst unrest since the revolution, Gaddafi’s moves are as opaque as ever. Amid feverish speculation about the future, everything he has ever done suggests he will not relinquish power voluntarily. “We will all die on Libyan soil,” sources close to his family told the Saudi paper al-Sharq al-Awsat.
According to unconfirmed reports the repression in Benghazi in eastern Libya is being led by his son Khamis, the Russian-trained commander of an elite special forces unit. Another son, Saadi, is there too, with Abdullah al-Senussi, veteran head of military intelligence.
Gaddafi will have learned the lessons from the Iranian and Chinese Communist thugs in 2009 and 1989 respectively. If you shoot enough people out of site of TV cameras then you’re likely to stay in power.
If you don’t, then experience the fates of Mubarak, Honecker and Gorbachev at best, Ceauşescu at worst.
Having said that I wonder if the Saudi’s started sharing a few similar thoughts with key security people in Bharain.
Cha – thanks, that’s the sort of info. that’s good to see on blogs.
… allowed (even encouraged?) “Dallas” to be screened in Romania in the belief that it would show the people how horrible and decadent it was in the west. it had the opposite effect.
Heh. I remember reading a story by some Soviet about their authorities screening, in the late 1940’s, films about the awful gangster capitalism of the US, featuring Al Capone and co. In the weeks following the broadcast of these films the writer observed men getting on buses and subway trains wearing outlandish, homemade ties, garish suits and shoes…..!!!
However, I would not get too overconfident about the wonders of Facebook and Tweeting in pushing the revolution along. The mad mullahs in Iran circulated cheap tape cassettes to spread their messages – after they took power. Communications technology can go both ways.
Seems like we’re headed for a year or two of political instability in the middle east.
I seem to recall people saying something like that in 1979 after the Iranian revolution. It turns out to have been a decade or three – and judging by the appearance of Sheik al-Qaradawi at a rally in Tahrir Square in front of a crowd of over a million Egyptians – the last revolution in Egypt is trending in familiar directions:
Where was the western hero Ghonim?
He tried to take the microphone to speak to the crowd, presumably to preach his western values, but he was kept off the stage by Sheik al-Qaradawi’s security.
But you probably haven’t heard that, because it was not widely reported, except by AFP, Egypt protest hero Wael Ghonim barred from stage (h/t Israel Matzav):
Google executive Wael Ghonim, who emerged as a leading voice in Egypt’s uprising, was barred from the stage in Tahrir Square on Friday by security guards, an AFP photographer said. Ghonim tried to take the stage in Tahrir, the epicentre of anti-regime protests that toppled President Hosni Mubarak, b ut men who appeared to be guarding influential Muslim cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi barred him from doing so.
Ghonim, who was angered by the episode, then left the square with his face hidden by an Egyptian flag.
This is the problem with those, like Roger Cohen in The New York Times, who glorify the “Arab Street.” Ghonim was not the face of the “Arab Street,” he merely was a face to which western media could relate.
Will the western media be as vigorous in exposing what is going on now in Egypt as it was in exposing the wrongs of Mubarek? I think not, because the truth — that the western media acted as willing dupes once again — hits too close to home.
As for Ghonim, expect him to follow the path of the intelligentsia wherever Islamist forces have taken control. He’ll move to the United States, where he will sit down for another 60 Minutes interview lamenting what has become of his beloved Egypt.
“I seem to recall something like that in 1979 after the Iranian revolution.”
The difference now is that as oil runs out, Libya, Egypt, Iran, Algeria etc will lose the ability to buy enough food to keep their populace fed. Anyone who studied the fall of the Mayan empire knows what happens next. The big one of course will be when the Saudi Royals lose the ability to fund their army and keep their populace suppessed. Either way what we are seeing at present is only the beginning.
bchapman – yeah, it’s tough to keep the lessons of history in mind while acknowledging the differences between periods.
But what I meant is that I don’t think any of this is going to settle down after a couple of years. I think it’s accelerating, and not in the bird-brained media sense of chasing the Twitter revolution from one country to the next, but in the sense of revolutions continuing to develop within a country even after the former regime has been deposed.
It can take months, or even a couple of years for the hardline revolutionaries to finally get their way and for their control of society to become obvious. In the case of Iran it actually took about three years: even six months after the Shah had gone Khomeni was still surrounding himself with secular representatives while he worked behind the scenes. Certainly fooled Foucault.
Id post but i would encur demerits, all i can say is WHO CARES opps fuel will go up ,hone keys tax take increases, greenstones profit line increases, opps the poor dead,islam the religion of peace and a great stack of dead bodies, their bodies not our dead who cares.This is my real worry in the world if a mongrel maori party mp calls me,my wife my chidren my white grandchildren WHITE MOTHER FUCKERS, and as hes a maori mp why i should respect this crybaby and his oranged headed mother.So in finishing the dead in the middle east are of no interest to me, i worry about garbage crap maori MPs ruling me and my extended white families life,this is my real worry for me and my extended in the future ps hone key really bends over forward to fully accommodate the maori party ,this can cause piles
Grizz, that lignite is a huge resource and this country is allowing a bunch of frickensandal wearing dirty hippies and slack arsed govt appointed environmentalist/carbon guilt bullshit artists to prevent it from being dug up to improve our standard of living and independance.
ETS and carbon taxes are a hindrance to wealth building and economic prosperity. Unbelievable.
At http://www.avaaz.org they run a staggering number of causes which wouldn’t necessarily suit many commenters on here, but one they are doing at the moment is to quickly raise funds to provide “secure satellite modems and phones, tiny video cameras, and portable radio transmitters, plus expert support teams on the ground — to enable activists to broadcast live video feeds even during internet and phone blackouts. ” They appear to have already done something similar in Burma last year.
I understand Libya is trying to enforce a blackout, so people may be interested in investigating and perhaps supporting this.
The British Labour Party and Scottish Nationalists will be pissed after releasing the Lockerbie bomber to appease Gaddafi. Their nauseating craveness, duplicity and opportunism will have been for naught if the leader of the Libyan Socialist party gets a well-deserved lynching.
I’m just hoping the spirit of revolution spreads to the West. There are very few politicians who don’t deserve precisely the same treatment. I wouldn’t lift a finger to save ‘em.
We don’t need to worry about oil: when the price goes up alternatives are found.. right????
It is not clear today what resources will eventually replace New Zealand’s current energy sources. But substitution is bound to occur. Fission and fusion energy both provide possible substitutes, along with renewable sources such as sun, wind, water and the earth’s internal heat. The immediate potential of renewables is strictly limited, however: in 1998 wind and solar power accounted for just 0.05 percent of world energy production. This low share is simply a consequence of renewables not yet being competitive with fossil fuels. But with the cost of solar energy and wind energy dropping (by 94-98 percent over the last 20 years), each is becoming closer to being profitable.
As Sheik Yamani, Saudi Arabia’s former oil minister and a founding architect of OPEC, has pointed out: “the Stone Age came to an end not for a lack of stones, and the oil age will end, but not for a lack of oil.” We will stop using oil when other energy technologies provide superior benefits. http://www.oilcrash.com/articles/kerr.htm
Agreed that there are many western politicians who would improve their countries with their demise. Before we go looking for tall lampposts & short pieces of rope it may be well to consider who would replace them. The Middle Eastern countries are going to end up as Muslim theocracies & travel back in time about 1400 years.
What would fill a power vacuum occurring in the West?
Yep Bob , China looks next . I wonder if that bloke will stand in front of the tanks this time round . They will let rip a lot sooner this time . I thought China had suppressed the net ?
Can this sort of uprising happen in NZ ? Probably .
As of Monday, Feb 21, ther are 11 countries experiencing protest activity. They are: Morrocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Eygpt, Jordan, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Yemen, and Iran.
All of these countries with the exception of Jordan are Oil exporting nations, therefore the possibility of a global oil shortage is very real and of concern to the E.U.
An interesting statistic that emerges from the data is that the average median age of the population of these nations is 25.7 years of age, Yemen having the youngest median of 17.9 years and Algeria the oldest median of 35.4 years.
The most significant statistic is the unemploment rate , 13.7% median average across the above nations.
Those two statistics combined are the driving force behind the protest and disruption as the populations rail against poverty and lack of opportunity.
Sounds a lot different to here. Our median age is 35, our unemployment rate is much lower, and “poverty” is nowhere near the same. Those that can’t find enough opportunity here can readily go over the ditch and elsewhere. Plus we have a reasonably functioning democracy, and very moderate religious influences. And we have nowhere near as much desert.
Influential Muslim cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi has issued a fatwa that any Libyan soldier who can shoot dead embattled leader Muammar Gaddafi should do so ‘to rid Libya of him.’
‘Whoever in the Libyan army is able to shoot a bullet at Mr Gaddafi should do so,’ Qaradawi, an Egyptian-born cleric who is usually based in Qatar, told Al-Jazeera television.
He also told Libyan soldiers ‘not to obey orders to strike at your own people,’ and urged Libyan ambassadors around the world to dissociate themselves from Gaddafi’s regime.
Famous in the Middle East for his at times controversial fatwas, or religious edicts, the octogenarian Qaradawi has celebrity status in the Arab world thanks to his religious broadcasts on Al-Jazeera. He has in the past defended ‘violence carried out by certain Muslims.’
The cleric, spiritual leader of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood and longtime resident of Qatar, heads the International Union for Muslim Scholars.
Key Libyan diplomats disown Gadhafi’s regime and the country’s deputy U.N. ambassador called on the longtime ruler to step down because of its bloody crackdown on protesters.
The Libyan ambassador to the United States also said he could no longer support Gadhafi, and the ambassador to India resigned. Almost all Libyan diplomats at the United Nations backed deputy ambassador Ibrahim Dabbashi’s pleas to Gadhafi to end his 40-year rule and to the international community to intervene.
The U.N. spokesperson’s office said late Monday that the Security Council had scheduled consultations on the situation in Libya for Tuesday morning.
Earlier, Dabbashi had said he was writing to the Security Council calling for action to stop the bloodshed. As diplomatic support for Gadhafi began to crumble, Dabbashi warned that if he doesn’t leave, “the Libyan people will get rid of him.”
The Messiah was quick to speak in Mubarak’s case. Why not to raise his feeble voice against Gaddafi?
The current US administration is as weak and pathetic as Jimmy Carter’s.
Even More Pathetic
As the Libyan crisis deepens, the Obama administration is still voting “present.”
But would it be too much to ask for a similar sense of urgency, a similar willingness to consider acting, in the case of Libya? This president responds with alacrity to earthquakes. To mad dictators killing their people, in a region of the world where so much is at stake and we can help shape a more promising future–not so much.
Gaddafi will take his own life and not flee – minister
Muammar Gaddafi will commit suicide the way Adolf Hitler did at the end of World War II rather than surrender or flee, a former Libyan cabinet minister told a Swedish newspaper in an interview published on Thursday. Skip related content
“Gaddafi’s days are numbered. He will do what Hitler did — he will take his own life,” former Justice Minister Mustafa Mohamed Abud Al Jeleil told Expressen in an interview in Al Bayda.
Al Jeleil resigned this week in protest at violence used by the government against demonstrators opposed to Gaddafi, whor is battling to preserve his 41-year rule.