Daily Archives: September 7, 2015


Why Murdoch Pushes for War

Given the disgraceful Sun front page and middle spread urging war on Syria, and the all-out propaganda on Sky News, it is important to understand why Murdoch is pushing so hard for war. I therefore reproduce my article from February 2013. It is important to note that the links are to industry publications: this is very genuine, hard information.

Israel Grants Oil Rights in Syria to Murdoch and Rothschild

Israel has granted oil exploration rights inside Syria, in the occupied Golan Heights, to Genie Energy. Major shareholders of Genie Energy – which also has interests in shale gas in the United States and shale oil in Israel – include Rupert Murdoch and Lord Jacob Rothschild. This from a 2010 Genie Energy press release

Claude Pupkin, CEO of Genie Oil and Gas, commented, “Genie’s success will ultimately depend, in part, on access to the expertise of the oil and gas industry and to the financial markets. Jacob Rothschild and Rupert Murdoch are extremely well regarded by and connected to leaders in these sectors. Their guidance and participation will prove invaluable.”

“I am grateful to Howard Jonas and IDT for the opportunity to invest in this important initiative,” Lord Rothschild said. “Rupert Murdoch’s extraordinary achievements speak for themselves and we are very pleased he has agreed to be our partner. Genie Energy is making good technological progress to tap the world’s substantial oil shale deposits which could transform the future prospects of Israel, the Middle East and our allies around the world.”

For Israel to seek to exploit mineral reserves in the occupied Golan Heights is plainly illegal in international law. Japan was succesfully sued by Singapore before the International Court of Justice for exploitation of Singapore’s oil resources during the second world war. The argument has been made in international law that an occupying power is entitled to opeate oil wells which were previously functioning and operated by the sovereign power, in whose position the occupying power now stands. But there is absolutely no disagreement in the authorities and case law that the drilling of new wells – let alone fracking – by an occupying power is illegal.

Israel tried to make the same move twenty years ago but was forced to back down after a strong reaction from the Syrian government, which gained diplomatic support from the United States. Israel is now seeking to take advantage of the weakened Syrian state; this move perhaps casts a new light on recent Israeli bombings in Syria.

In a rational world, the involvement of Rothschild and Murdoch in this international criminal activity would show them not to be fit and proper persons to hold major commercial interests elsewhere, and action would be taken. Naturally, nothing of the kind will happen.

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The Carmichael Case

I have been dipping in to the coverage of the Carmichael recall case. His lawyer is basing his argument heavily on a precedent that, while a candidate may adopt a political position that shows him to be a hypocrite, the law only applies to personal conduct and not political conduct. He then quotes a Channel 4 interview which says it is plain that Carmichael was answering questions in his capacity as Secretary of State for Scotland. “He did not say anything about his personal character or conduct.”

The fundamental flaw in this argument is that Carmichael cannot say that leaking the document was a function of his office of Secretary of State. It was a personal act, with a crooked political motive. Leaking the document, and then lying about doing it, is undoubtedly a matter of “personal character and conduct.” Carmichael’s lawyer is arguing that the fact Carmichael lied does not in itself make it a matter of personal character. But that is an Aunt Sally. Nobody said that it does. But it happens that it was a matter of personal character.

The whole very unedifying argument on Carmichael’s side boils down to “it is fine to lie if it is political”. How a decent man puts himself into this totally dishonourable position, instead of just resigning, is beyond me.

The court will find in Carmichael’s favour. The Scottish legal establishment is no more of the people now than it was in the days of Thomas Muir of Huntershill. That is something which will have to be vigorously addressed after Independence.

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The Usual Warmongers

To many of us who have been in conflict zones without a sanitised cordon around us, and actually seen the effects close-up (and that excludes almost all of the political class), it is astonishing that the neo-cons constantly seek to promote war, any war. They just cannot sit comfortably unless we are blowing somebody, somewhere, limb from limb.

Little Aylan Kurdi and his family were fleeing Kobani, a town the US Air Force have been bombing relentlessly for weeks. Bombs are entirely agnostic over who they kill, and have not made life notably better for the population.

Yet the news media are now insistently beating the drum for British bombing in Syria. Who should be bombed exactly – ISIL or Assad – appears unimportant, so long as there is bombing. Indeed, the Murdoch Sky News, the Mail and the Blairites are contriving to build a narrative that Jeremy Corbyn, the SNP and bleeding hearts like myself are responsible for the death of little Aylan and hundreds like him, by unreasonable and inhuman opposition to a bit more bombing.

It is very reminiscent of the entirely fake narrative of a (non-existent) tank column sweeping down to massacre every civilian in Benghazi, to halt which we had to murder, by bombing, many thousands of civilians in Sirte, several hundred miles away and containing no tank columns. The people of Benghazi went on to show their gratitude by killing the US Ambassador, while Libya disintegrated into a violent mess with no effective government that could control activities like drug and people smuggling.

That worked well, didn’t it? Of course we should try something similar in Syria.

ISIL is a bastard child of the Iraq War. A bastard child of Bush and Blair. Its weapons are almost entirely American. Some have been captured from Iraqi forces, others were gifted to it by the Saudi/CIA sponsors of its original constituent parts. The countless deaths of children we inflicted by bombing in the Iraq war will fuel it for another two generations.

Never mind old bean. Nothing a spot more bombing won’t sort out, eh?

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