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Journal of America Team:

Syed R. Mahmood 
 Editor in chief: 
Abdus Sattar Ghazali
 Managing Editor:
Mertze Dahlin   
Senior Editor:
Arthur Scott

Journal of America encourages independent
thinking and honest discussions on national & global issues

Disclaimer and Fair Use Notice: Many articles on this web site are written by independent individuals or organizations. Their opinions do not necessarily reflect those of the Journal of America and its affiliates. They are put here for interest and reference only. More details

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July 2015

American Muslims alarmed at Anti-Muslim rhetoric  by Rand Paul, Wesley Clark, Franklin Graham
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali:
The seven-million-strong American Muslim community was alarmed by the recent anti-Muslim proposals by Senator Rand Paul, former NATO Commander General Wesley Clark and Christian evangelist Franklin Graham. Their anti-Muslim proposals came in reaction to the deadly shootings that took the lives of five service members and injured one law enforcement officer in Chattanooga, Tenn. Although investigators are still searching for possible terrorist links of the attacker (Kuwait-born Mohammad Youssuf Abdulazeez), right wingers quickly jumped in to cash in on the attacker’s Muslim identity.
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The Confederate Flag is down but the Battle over it isn’t over
By Dr. Habib Siddiqui:
Friday, July 10, 2015 was a historic moment in the history of the United States of America. On Friday morning just after 10 a.m., the Confederate flag on South Carolina’s (SC) State House grounds was removed. It was an event that was surely overdue for decades. But thanks to the SC politicians, many of whom were overtly racists, if not covertly, and their supporters within the general population, this flag, which has been seen as a symbol of intolerance and racism by all African-Americans, had remained hoisted all these years, until it was brought down lately. So, what made the difference this time? It was that Charleston shooting at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church by a white terrorist - Dylann Roof - who like many other fellow racists revered that confederate flag very dearly. Nine Black church members were shot to death by Roof on June 17 when they were having a Bible Study.
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Iran nuclear deal: The devil may be in interpretation
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali:
Aaron David Miller, vice president at the Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars, argues that even though both sides have agreed to the same words, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Washington and Teheran are on the same page. We encountered this problem with the Lausanne framework
released in April; Iran and the U.S. had talking points on some key issues, such as when sanctions would be lifted, and it resulted in more than a few problems. “This accord is supposed to be the final deal. If the creative ambiguity required to produce it is too creative (read: ambiguous), it could lead to the sort of destructive ambiguity that blows things up. Watch for areas of disagreement in how each side discusses the agreement publicly.” Read More

The Troubling Implications of Hillary’s Anti-BDS Letter
By  Stephen Zunes:
Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton's position on the Israeli occupation of the West Bank does not bode well for her future foreign policy. On July 2, former secretary of state and frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination Hillary Clinton wrote a letter to Israeli-American billionaire Haim Saban, a strong supporter of the right-wing Netanyahu government, denouncing human rights activists who support boycott/divestment/sanctions (BDS) against the Israeli occupation.
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Media Treatment of White Terrorism in the USA
By Dr. Habib Siddiqui: On Wednesday night, June 17, 2015, Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church in Charleston, South Carolina, was having Bible Study. Hours later, 9 Black church members were shot to death by Dylann Roof, a 21 year old White male. Did DylannRoof choose the date to send a message to the black community in the USA? After all, the 199-year-old churchis the oldest AME Church in the South. Often referred to as "Mother Emanuel",it has played an important role in the history of South Carolina, including the slavery era, the 1960s Civil Rights Movement, and the Black Lives Matter movement in the 2010s.Its history is closely tied with its co-founder, Denmark Vesey,a former slave who purchased his freedom in 1799. The AME Church was founded in 1816 in response to the exclusion that Blacks received from the broader Methodist denomination; it was a safe haven site for the Underground Railroad. Read More

June 2015

UN report details massive Israeli war crimes in Gaza in 2014
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali:
The UN Commission appointed to investigate the Israeli attack on Gaza in July-August 2014, has published its report which strongly condemns the Israeli attacks on civilian targets which may have been war crimes.  However, in a bid to 'balance' the findings of the Israeli atrocities, the report also holds Hamas committing war crimes during Israel’s aggression on Gaza last summer.
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Why African-American church massacre is not terrorism?
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali:
The massacre of nine African Americans in Charleston has been classified as a possible hate crime, apparently carried out by a 21 year old white man who once wore an apartheid badge and other symbols of white supremacy, Rick Gladstone of New York Times reported on June 18, 2015. But many civil rights advocates are asking why the attack has not officially been called terrorism, he said adding: Against the backdrop of rising worries about violent Muslim extremism in the United States, advocates see hypocrisy in the way the attack and the man under arrest in the shooting have been described by law enforcement officials and the news media. Read More

The contrasting fates of Tunisia and Libya
By Stephen Zunes:
The people of Libya and Tunisia both overthrew long-standing dictatorships in popular uprisings in 2011. Four years later, however, the current political situation in these two neighboring North African states could not be more different. The reason has much to do with how their authoritarian regimes were overthrown. Read More

The politics of NGOs
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali:
Pakistan has suspended moves to close the national branch of the charity Save the Children. The move by the interior ministry comes three days after the charity's main office in the capital Islamabad was shut down by police on June 12, 2015. Islamabad government’s U-turn in the case of Save the Children has not only embarrassed the government it has humiliated the whole nation as this incident proved that Pakistan is not independent even to take a decision against an NGO which it said has been involved in anti-Pakistan activities. The foreign-funded and dollar-driven NGOs are more powerful than the government of Pakistan and its institutions, as they continue to circumvent all attempts to regulate and audit their funding. In the 21st century, NGOs have turned out to become the most important players at the international arena. Apparently NGOs are responsible for various humanitarian affairs, which are linked to poverty, civil freedom and environment,  however, the Western governments  are very well known for using the NGOs as a tool to better implement their foreign policies. Read More

World War I, Middle East map, & ISIS / ISIL
By Arthur Kane Scott
: World War 1 was the most significant event of the twentieth century as it set in motion deep political and social forces that still resonate today, especially in the Middle East.  WWI saw the collapse of four multi- national empires: Russia, Germany, Austro-Hungary and Ottoman. It accelerated American and Japanese rivalry for East Asia, and it provided France and Britain with an opportunity to consolidate their hold on the Middle East made strategically valuable because of the emergence of oil as primary fuel source. The current flawed Middle East Map, itself a product of Orientalism in many ways accounts for the fizzle of the Arab Spring as well as the prevalence of authoritarian regimes.  The “map” originated with the diplomatic machinations of Paris and London that centered initially on Sir Mark Sykes of Britain and Francois Georges Picot of France. Subsequent players were Woodrow Wilson of United States and Sir Arthur Balfour of London. Sharif Hussein bin Ali, emir of Mecca, along with Lawrence of Arabia, were reduced to pawns in these high stakes negotiations.
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Freedom of Speech V. Freedom of Religion: Anti-Islam armed rally outside Phoenix mosque
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali:
Amid recent rise in Islamophobia, an anti-Islam rally was held on Friday (May 29, 2015) outside the Phoenix mosque. This was the second anti-Islam rally outside this mosque within two weeks. The first one held on May 17 garnered far less public and social media attention. Last Friday's anti-Islam rally gained attention around the country on social media. The rally was organized by a Phoenix man, Jon Ritzheimer, a proud atheist who says he is a former Marine who fought in the Iraq War and claims that Islam is a violent religion. He led about 250 people who carried pistols, assault rifles, American flags and drawings of the Prophet Muhammad to the Islamic Community Center of Phoenix.
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Beyond the Middle East: The Rohingya genocide
By Ramzy Baroud:
“Nope, nope, nope,” was Australia’s Prime Minister, Tony Abbott’s answer to the question whether his country will take in any of the nearly 8,000 Rohingya refugees stranded at sea. Abbott’s logic is as pitiless as his decision to abandon the world’s most persecuted minority in their darkest hour. “Don’t think that getting on a leaky boat at the behest of a people smuggler is going to do you or your family any good,” he said. But Abbott is hardly the main party in the ongoing suffering of Rohingyas, a Muslim ethnic group living in Myanmar, or Burma. The whole Southeast Asian region is culpable. They have ignored the plight of the Rohingya for years. While tens of thousands of Rohingya are being ethnically cleansed, having their villages torched, forced into concentration camps and some into slavery, Burma is being celebrated by various western and Asian powers as a success story of a military junta-turned democracy.
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The Rohingya - Adrift on a Sea of Sorrows
By Eric Margolis:
When is genocide not really genocide? When the victims are small, impoverished brown people no wants or cares about – Burma’s Rohingya. Their plight has finally commanded some media attention because of the suffering of Rohingya boat people, 7,000 of whom continue to drift in the waters of the Andaman Sea without food, water or shelter from the intense sun. At least 2,500 lucky refugees are in camps in Indonesia. Mass graves of Rohingya are being discovered in Thailand and Burma (Myanmar). Large numbers of Rohingya are fleeing for their lives from their homeland, Burma, while the world does nothing. Burma is believed to have some 800,000 Rohingya citizens. Read More