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Until lions tell their tale, the story of the hunt will always glorify the hunter
– African Proverb
Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will
– Frederick Douglass
The most pathetic thing is for a slave who doesn't know that he is a slave
– Malcolm X
Every man is rich in excuses to safeguard his prejudices, his instincts, and his opinions.
– Ancient Egypt
What is termed "religion and violence" is largely a Western dichotomy of different power configurations that serve a Western consumer audience. The myth of religion as incompatible with secular governance or having an inherent disposition to creating violence is so pervasive that it eludes critique and verification.
– 'Alik Shahadah
What kind of world do we live in when the views of the oppressed are expressed at the convenience of their oppressors?
– 'Alik Shahadah
We are not Africans because we are born in Africa, we are Africans because Africa is born in us.
– Chester Higgins Jr.
Leave no brother or sister behind the enemy line of poverty.
– Harriet Tubman
If we stand tall it is because we stand on the shoulders of many ancestors.
– African Proverb
If we do not stop oppression when it is a seed, it will be very hard to stop when it is a tree.
– ' Alik Shahadah
If the future doesn't come toward you, you have to go fetch it
– Zulu Proverb
See | Mali Ansar Dine Update | Nothing called Al-Qaeda™ or "terrorist" in Mali. Al-Qaeda is an ad hoc, show up when foreign policy needs an excuse, CIA funded imaginary foe. The $1.3 trillion "War on terror" ruse for neocolonialism—Its been working to secure most of the Middle East, now it is being applied to Africa (with great success).
Kenya | "Terrorism" is a form of war, it is political and attacks symbols which represent the ideology of its enemies. The attacks in Kenya deliberately targeted the symbols (wealth) of Israeli, Western, and co-opted African elites. The innocent lives lost are the casualties of Africom colonial collaboration.
New | The final mutation of the war on terror is the new solo terrorist, terrorism in the smallest possible footprint—not the cell, but the single autonomous person: the self-motivating disconnected terrorism.
It is strange that since 9/11, despite fighting a "War Against Terror," there are far more instances of "Terror" around the Globe. The Western solution is to keep bombing, keep invading, keep demonizing, and keep exploiting. Is it the terror that is creating this Western response and expansion, or is their expansion and response causing the so-called "terror"?
The history of humanity testifies to one fact, we do not need religion to exercise violence: Rwanda 0.8 million people in 100 days, Congo 5,4 million, Shaka Zulu's Mfecane, Nigerian-Biafran war 1.2 million, Ethiopia (62-92) 2 million — mainly at the hands of an atheist (Mengistu) , we should pause before these figure, and ask "Where is religion?" And outside of Africa: Mao (40 Million), Stalin (20 Million), Hitler (42 million). 
From a statistical standpoint the logic that blames violence on religion is a sampling error. The raw numbers of deaths from conflict categorically show that across the globe, and in Africa, that religion, in anyway shape or form, is rarely a motive for animosity.(e.g. Far more people die from US foreign policy than at the hands of the mythical Al-Qaeda™ 
However, despite this, the news headlines are so successful at postering religion and violence that we forget the glaring statistics that show no such correlations.
The casual association between Islam and terrorism fails the minute we look at the raw statics. To most in the West Suicide bombing = Islam = terrorism, again another myth created in Hollywood and CNN. And this charge of myth and lies is not an opinion, but quantifiable irrefutable statistics. So how in light of these statics do we arrive at the current casual association of Islam and terrorism, religion and conflict? (Pape) (Cavanaugh) it is clear the "news" is cherry picking and shaping public perception for political ends. We hear about Darfur and Nigeria with far more frequency than we will hear about the Rohingya Muslim percecution in Burma, at the hands of Arakan Buddhists.  And even in both Darfur and Nigeria yet mainly Muslims are dying--something smells.  And while White "Christian"are dropping bombs and occupying Muslims lands it is suppose to be the Muslims who are Jihadding Christians? --very strange point of view. How many Christian countries have in Muslim armies?
You can scan world news, Ethiopian news, South African, Mali news and you will hear about religious fundemantalism, but where is the coverage of White supremacy, Western imperialism? It is like discussing a hurricane and not mentioning the damage, wind, and the rain. You have people in Mali marching against "religious extremism," where are the people marching against Western hegemony? Despite it being the most fundamental sculptor in the last 500 years? But the lie is so pervasive people cannot see the woods for all the trees in the forest. Despite everything in creation testifying otherwise no one seems to even ask, how come the news controlled by the West is always making the West look good — is that that at least suspicious? NEWS is not a mirror on reality— but on spheres of political interest. It never was about reporting the stories of the people of the world, and likewise, no democracy determines the contents of the newspaper you are reading. Added to this the entire news network in Africa is subject to US opinion, and in some cases a front for the US military (The site—sabahionline.com—is run by the U.S. military for the sole purpose of brainwashing people and controlling information. 
Israel can spend a week shelling Gaza, killing hundreds of people. And the international community calls it "Israel's right to defend itself." It is written in law, support by senate, justified by America's corrupable unconditional support for all things Zionist, apologized for by the UK. In the same conflict a counter attack in the city of Tel Aviv targets a bus, but is called a cowardly "terrorist act."A death ratio 160:5 in favor of the occupiers, but the Palestinians are the terrorist. It seems the moral lessons gathered along our human journey seem to fail application. Love thy Neighbor (Jesus). Do unto others as you will have them do until you (NT). Never allow your hatred to blind your morals (Islam). And King taught us:
Democracy vs. Sharia is posited to define the conflict, but these are just names with spectrums of difference; we need not worry ourselves with subjective labels. Meles called his dictatorship a democracy. America called denying African Americans the right to vote a democracy. What does it do for the people, how does each system represent the ambitions of the majority? Why not let the people truly decide (Egypt) sharia, democracy, kingship, etc, Is this not self-determination? Self-determination is not determined by what America likes!
So it is intresting to hear about Iran as the "Greatest Threat to World Peace"© and "We can not allow these fanatical people to get their hands on nukes" — 100% agree, but which fanatics are they referring to? Iran or America and Israel? That question can only be answered, not with emotion and selective amnesia, but with a history lesson (Hiroshima). Please note Iran has not invaded or attacked any country since 1878. However, the last 500 years of ongoing European conquest rarely seems to be notable in the debate about what is and has been a barrier to peace and justice on Earth? We are made to assume that apartheid, slavery, Little Boy bomb on Hiroshima, genocide of Native Americans, Opium Wars, Vietnam, exploitation of African, dead children in Iraq, intervention in Chile, assassinations, etc, are somehow suppressed as evidence against the trial of West vs. Humanity: How can the "good guys" be so bad? And even if acknowledged, there is a belief that it was a very long time ago and the West is now the "good guys" in human affairs. But at what date since WW1, for example, has that moral transformation occurred? When did they go from slave traders to protectors of humanity? Was it after the Civil Rights or after Iraq II?
America rose to dominance post-WW2, post 9-11 it has again made another power surge to become an even stronger super power. More extended, more involved, more unapologetic about stepping on other nations sovereignty. The USA has an amazing knack for converting every global crisis into a stepping stone for its own interest; amazing efficient at exploiting regional conflicts. The U.S. has spent $1.3 trillion on the war on terror so far. That was in reaction to about 14,000 total deaths from so-called international terrorism from 1975 to 2003. That's more than $90 million spent for each person killed.
And again it is "religious" when people of Islamic heritage take up arms, for whatever reason (mainly defense), but non-religious when "Christian" nations "bomb them back into the stone ages."   How does that work? Why is the threshold of inclusion of a "religious act of violence" so open where Islam is concerned, and so closed when Europeans practising Christianity is concern. If a Muslim sneezes in the wrong direction it is automatically an act of their Islamic faith. And why is spreading "Islamic Sharia" to Muslim countries so offensive, yet spreading capitalism and its carrying bag (sometimes going by the sobriquet democracy) so acceptable? Why is a "Jewish state" allowed but an "Islamic state" taboo? Has this democracy created any tangible benefits for oppressed people in South Africa, Israel, or even democracy's own country of manufacture?
The only thing that can be seen as "Successful" in the world is a Western model. To beat out another path is vulgarly heterodoxical, and will be met with an absolute, and copious prejudicial use of force. Alternatives must not only fail, they must be made to fail visibly to deter being inspirational. And this is the back drop to every major clash post WW2. Because as far as the Western control, they allow sell systems which they make so they can be manipulated (like their brand of Democracy).
There is a global campaign from CNN (hawks) right down to Europe’s favorite African intellectuals (vultures) to push a myth by collating every instance which fingers “Islam and a problem" because "they hate our freedoms." (freedoms or foreign policies? [Zogby]) If one compiles all the reports side by side the pattern is crystal clear; semi-fictional, hyperbole, dubious sources, to create a relationship to justify an agenda. This one-way moral mirror used to discuss "religion" never reflects on Western "secular" aggression with the same tone or supposed impartiality.
And it is identical to the way in which Africans are demonized in the West by constantly reporting statistics and occurrences, which they say prove the myth of a "Black problem." But failing to mention the oppression African Americans have been victims of for the last 300 years. Why does it work? Because the general public are ignorant or misinformed about the dynamics and the overview of most of the world's issues. Again reality seems to verify a casual relationship between African-Americans rape and others crimes.
One thing should ring out in every situation, WHO DOES IT REALLY PROFIT. If America has a hand in anything, and they have their hand in everything, be 100% sure it profits America. Some rebels are good, some rebels are bad. History is replete testifies that what determines good rebels and bad rebels is American interest.
Why discuss anything without also factoring that Muslim countries control most of the world's oil reserves? And Western powers have been hell bent on seeking justification for the taking of these assets under the guise of a "War on Terror." And the omnipresent evil or nemesis of the "good White guys" is the omnipresent monolithic faceless "Islamist," a neologism created by US foreign policy. It would be dishonest to label Western as Christian, or Israel as Judaism, just as it is dishonest to factor religion into a greedy neocolonial resource conflict. We also seem to forget the fact that of the top 10 deadliest conflicts on Earth none of them were religious in nature.
In the last 20 years of American history, there have been 129 confirmed White terrorist (Timothy Mcveigh, to the Olympic Park Bomber, to the infamous Unabomber), all Christian, all white, all American, an all successful at killing people: However, has that fact ever factored in profiling White American Christians? Has it caused a backlash or the mythical association between Christianity, secularism or America and violence?“
that is not "religious aggression" by Western nations because it is sanitized by words such as indirect war, collateral damage and the cost of liberation.
A White Christian goes into an Afghan village and slaughters 16 civilians, many of them women and children; whose names we will never know, and never celebrate. They are the "unworthy" causlties of war--the non-people who have no value on CNN. Right after the incident his "human rights" were being respected, his family was being protected, he got a lawyer to explain how "stressed he was", "how his wife upset him the night before", "how living around all these "terrorist" would send anyone crazy." He will be given due process in the safest court in the world-- that of his own self-serving government. Unlike his fellow American Anwar al-Awlaki he will have a trial of his peers, not a trial by assassin drone. And how many people did Anwar kill? 16 or Zero? But two rules are applied in this world; both being the exclusive reality of the man with the biggest stick.
"Giving them democracy." And regardless of how language or politics chooses to define configurations of power, we send our children to war to help the elites hold on to it.
So If our mission is to better understand, and hence prevent conflict, it will only come with giving a more sophisticated balanced analysis that is holistic and inclusive of reality. Empty rhetoric appeals to the emotions of the populous; it has no loyalty to comprehension and tangible solutions.
The war on terror started by targeting "rouge" states, and the omnipresent CIA funded false flag asset called Al-Qaeda. The arch in that narrative included the spectacle, which reportedly terminated the arch villain—Bin Ladin. Several African mutations popped up are in the process of being contained: Somalia, Mali, and Nigeria. The final mutation of the war on terror is the new solo terrorist, terrorism in the smallest possible footprint—not the cell, but the single autonomous person: the self-motivating disconnected terrorism. And their only uniting characteristic is Islam. The educated, uneducated, rich, African, Arab, Russian, Eritrean everywhere in the world is now wrapped into the theatre of terror wars—everyone is a potential terrorist—everyone can be watched.
To keep the world safe for all these terrorist strains, as well as the odd chance communism returns USA has, as of 2009, maintained 662 foreign sites in 38 countries around the world. 
According to Jared Diamond, four factors are responsible for all historical developments: 1) Availability of potential crops and domestic animals, 2) The spread of agriculture, 3) Transfer of knowledge between continents, and 4) Population size. The principle source of human conflict also operates within these zones, but not only, as trade rights have risen to the top of the conflict zone. And if religion is the source of so much conflict, above all the aforementioned issues, it rushes us directly into the long standing logical fallacy of a "doing away with religion," as a panacea for humanity: Hence the rise of the state as a higher form of human policy management. Richard Dawkins, the most celebrated atheist, constantly pushes this agenda of humanity commuting religion:
Someone should explain to Dawkins that without "religion" and its influence   (See Weber: The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, Ancient Palestine) he might be writing his next atheist book on the wall of a cave while chewing semi-cooked meat and playing with deer bones for toys. The very paper he writes his atheist diatribes on came to Europe via Islamic hands, the Greeks he builds his arguments on was preserved via Muslim philosophy. And the garbage can he should throw his work into came via the Islamic impetus that gave birth to the European renaissance. Religion built the pyramids in the sands of the Nile Valley and the wonderful libraries of Timbuktu. The history of the atheist is the history of nothing useful for humanity. However, without the religious proclamations of "In the name of God" America is busy making war everywhere on God's green Earth.
Secularism replaces God with an anthropocentric moral argument divorced from the reality that Religion played and plays a critical role in the formation of civilizations and thus is a central aspect of our very humanity.
We see a mirror of these ethics in the Hammurabi code, and even in other more recent native African faiths.
There is also no denying the role of religion in brainwashing people to either make them more passive (better slaves) or more aggressive (Siege of Jerusalem 1099). Religion was one of the tools of conquest in Africa. The likes of David Livingstone summed it up in his 3C's: Christianity, Commerce, and Civilization. But what is assigned to "religion" is more an issue of notions of European cultural supremacy. So Europeans were therefore really successful in brainwashing the people with an image of a White God, because of their message of the cultural supremacy of the white race. And contrary to popular belief the "religious" mission was not used in the conquest of much of India, Arabia, and Islamic Africa. Therefore it could not have been the principle agent for brainwashing people to accepting colonial domination. Christianity as a tool has run its course long time ago, the churches in Europe are empty, that is no longer the ideology that will empower their markets. But in the vacuum of Christianity what is still there? European Culture.
It makes no sense to discuss "religion" in the exclusive context of mind control; what about notions of race? Politics (esp.), media, Books, educational system, music and sports are they not also systems of control, why isolate religion? Every civilization has systems of control to reduce dissent and formulate harmony (good and bad) to focus human energy on serving the national interest-- again this can be good and bad. The point is control is in all things and part and parcel of all advanced human societies.
And outside of these "religious" formations we have even more of how people are brainwashed into not uniting because of what is perceived as political allegiances, and especially ethnic allegiances, (or even allegiance to a football team)— we must deal with the root, the general ignorance that allows people to be manipulated in these ways. Because most will agree that those who control power use religion in a scapegoat capacity. But religion like a bomb is a tool, it can be used to blow up a building or put a man in orbit. Any system, whether we call it religion, politics, ideological, can be hijacked for any objective the power-broker desires—good or bad.
But even after Saladin retook the city he deliberately invited back the Ethiopian monks and exempted them from taxation—not to mention the numerous acts of tolerance and humanity he showed even his enemies. We also see a similar level of tolerance in Andalusia (Islamic Spain) ruled by African Moors and Arabs, which was destroyed in 1492 by the Spanish inquisition. Again Jews, Muslims and Christians built an era that ushered in a Renaissance in Europe. And under this peaceful co-existence Judaism experience its "Golden age" with Maimonides (موسى بن ميمون); one of Judaism greatest scholars. This is an era pre-Geneva convention, pre-UN human rights, yet so-called non-secular configurations of governance were able to amicable foster a climate of tolerance and co-existence. It would therefore be safe to say that the history of religious tolerance is far greater than intolerance—especially outside of Europe. The news that makes history is when things fall apart, giving the illusion of a perpetual sequences of sectarian conflict.
This word terrorism has a very broad application. But the one common thread is it seems terrorism is always some act that is not in US foreign interest. But according to the above definitions then the entire history of America, UK, France, Germany and Israel  would be the biggest terrorist on the planet and their victims are the native peoples of the planet who live in fear and submission.  As the popular saying goes:
And while most find the act of terrorism morally reprehensible when it targets innocent non-combatants. This is the aspect which becomes reprehensible, the single act of targeting innocent civilians. Apart from this, terrorism is just another type of ugly and heinous warfare, which mankind seems not to be able to evolve out of. But the old canard of the random crazy terrorist is not a serious assessments— just a better way to continuing denying the merit and agent of certain grievances. Especially when those grievances are the results of US foreign policy and admitting that would make America liable. Terrorist, if anything, are not random, cowards, or illogical. A coward is someone who flies a nuclear bomb high in the sky and drops it on women and children at zero risk to himself. A coward gets 7 nations to attack one 3rd world country. A coward hides behind White House walls while sending the poor to Vietnam to die. Terrorist, just like the crying of a baby— creates a desired effect. And from a social perspective it is always a sign of a society which has failed to represent, or incorporate plurality and marginalize groups. (Robert Pape, Dying to Win (2005)) One thing we can agree on, unlike most politicians, is their are no insincere or fickle suicide bombers.
"The term terrorism means premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against non-combatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents, usually intended to influence an audience." - Patterns of Global Terrorism 2003, p. xii, US Department of State
"[T]he unlawful use of force and violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population… in furtherance of political or social objectives." - Terrorism 2002-2005, p. iv, FBI, US Department of Justice
"The unlawful use of violence or threat of violence to instil fear and coerce governments or societies. Terrorism is often motivated by religious, political, or other ideological beliefs and committed in the pursuit of goals that are usually political." - Department of Defence Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms, (Amended in 2012), p. 317
Clearly, keywords in these definitions like "ideological beliefs", "religious", "subnational", "violence", even "societies", can be amply twisted to include as much as exclude, subject to convenience, what counts as terrorism which, according to India's The Prevention of Terrorism Act, 2002, includes any "intent to threaten the unity, integrity, security or sovereignty of India or to strike terror in the people". In mainstream definitions, the term "political" is used to distinguish terrorism from crime by an "abnormal" person - shootings by an individual for "personal" reason. However, defining "political" this way is problematic because in another definition of politics - everything is political or, as the feminist credo held: "the personal is political"~Irfan Ahmad
America is a psychopathic psychofrenic. They go around the world pissing people off and then get teary eyes and confused when the colonized kick back. Like when you see a child pulling at a dogs tail, the dog was cool and ignored it once then twice, but on the 3rd time you know what happens. Cry yes, but most children learn that pulling at dogs tails = you get bitten. America is still trying to figure out why it got bitten. And as oppose to learn, they keep repeating the behavior that keeps the cycle in place. The idea is alter your foreign policy. Alter your attitude to the Zionist state. (Mearsheimer & Walt (2008))
Sometimes you wonder how come the FBI and MI5 foil so many "terrorist plots," From OneIslam: The overwhelming majority of "terrorism" cases in America can fit into a category in which the FBI picks the gullible Muslim youth, sends an undercover agent to "befriend" him, and over a period of time, prod him to agree to carry out some attack. The agreement is recorded on tape. The undercover FBI agent offers the kid weapons, and arrests him as soon as he is about to proceed with the so-called "plot." While the intended impression is that the Feds swooped in to save the day, the reality is that they "foiled" their own plot. An artificial victory, and this is the formula which you see every other day when you read the news, whose purpose is to compensate for the lack of authentic "terror plots."(oneIslam)
Added to this that many "Terrorist" sites are owned and controlled by the USA to solicit, seduced and monitor  Maybe many terrorist plots are also --9/11?
The information is drawn from suicide terrorist groups themselves, from the main organizations that collect such data in target countries, and from news media around the world. More than a "list of lists," this database probably represents the most comprehensive and reliable survey of suicide terrorist attacks that is now available. The data show that there is little connection between suicide terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism, or any one of the world's religions. In fact, the leading instigators of suicide attacks are the Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka, a Marxist-Leninist group whose members are from Hindu families but who are adamantly opposed to religion. This group committed 76 of the 315 incidents, more suicide attacks than Hamas. ~ Robert Pape
...and the United States has backed a number of 'terrorist' organizations in the past (including the Nicaraguan contras and the UNITA guerillas in Angola). American presidents have also welcomed a number of former terrorists to the White House (including PLO chairman Yasser Arafat and Israeli Prime Ministers Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir, who played key roles in the main Zionist terrorist organizations) which merely underscores the fact that terrorism is a tactic and not a unified movement." — John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007.
EASIER TO BLAME...
(French supposed Al-Qaeda who killed 4 Jewish civilians) and unlike Breivik, there is no backlash in Europe against White racism like we see in France against Islamic fundamentalism: If anything the backlash for Breivik's killing is more towards immigrants. In both cases the mental state is clearly the greatest agent; Breiviks is Christian, and naturally articulated his insanity through that faith, Merah was Muslim and naturally articulated his insanity through that religion: The religion in all the above is inconsequential. It would be far more accurate to label both as politically motivated lunatics.
It is impossible to deal with religion and violence and completely deny the violence within the very text of both the Qur'an and especially the Bible. Raymuns Schwager found 600 passages of explicit violence in the Old Testament, along with 1000 descriptive verses of "God's own violence", and 100 passages where God commands murder (even of innocent non-combatants). It would not be an exaggeration to say far from being a book of love the Old Testament is a book of violence and warfare. 
And the Qur'an is also fully of blatant violence against the enemies of Islam. There is no denying the similar bias where "On the side of God" and what we see in the Western war language. But the primary argument is not the defense of "religion" as some begin always warm and loving institution. But moreover to dispel the myth that religion is unique or more given to violence. Because despite all the so-called violence in the Bible, it is not why the Crusaders invaded Muslim controlled lands.
Fear! You fear the 'terrorist' so much you do not mind re-colonization. More US bases—no problem. Boko Haram is worst—USA willing to "help." Invasion in Uganda-- Kony is worst. Gaddafi has been in office far too long, nothing worse than an over extended ruler—clearly, that justifies murder and invasion (also known as regime change). Africom in ET- Al Shabab is worst. Mali's Ansar Dine is far worse than Western imperialism. Because Africa and a Pan-African identity was never clear on what matters most, we saw each other as a nightmare but the slave master as a Messiah. They had the same excuse 500 years ago 'saving us from ourselves.' Africa was so "horrible" enslavement was a gift over being left as free people in Africa. David Livingstone practically made the same statement as the CIA chiefs today. But nothing is worst, not even Rwanda * 10, if you are a slave, if you are governed by another (Fanon). Just like no volume of corruption and nepotism justifies white economic monopoly in Africa.
It is no good knowing about the ills of historical colonization, if today we do not see it happening right before our eyes. The very same people who rattle on about colonization are oblivious to the processes when the details of Kenya and Somalia are laid bare. They object to the "recolonization", but then support the wars that bring it about. They cannot see the piece by piece stages to Western interest achieving their ends, it is like boiling someone so slowly that they do not notice.
Colonialism in Black face | With Mali they say it is an African problem, so Africans have to fight --no foreign forces. They are putting a fine point and making sure they state that. Funny, who is behind it all? Who is planning it all? Who profits from it all? So they might as well let French and US troops go in and invade the place. If you put a dress on a pig, it is still a pig: Colonialism in high heels is still colonialism. But the West is smart, why waste good Western troops, when you can tell paid off African governments to skip negotiation, and go and kill each other, then the West can pick up the pieces. You will notice Algeria, one of the richest in the region, is not for it? Not that easy to buy countries who are economically secure -- their price tag is a little higher.
Contagion: What they really do not want to have happen is for say Northern Mali to impose Sharia, and people see it work better than imposed democracy and the rest of Islamic Africa start thinking: "um maybe we should try that." It is critical they make it fail, before it can even grow. This is also true for South Africa and Zimbabwe, what was most dangerous about Zimbabwe was the example it laid. Neighboring South Africans started saying; "we can do that to, it worked for them."
Fighting them over there, so we don’t need to fight them here has been a core tenet of American foreign policy for decades, especially since 9/11. But trying to apply military solutions to complex political and social problems hasregularly led to unforeseen consequences. For example, last year’s U.S.-supported war in Libya resulted in masses of well-armed Tuareg mercenaries, who had been fighting for Libyan autocrat Muammar Qaddafi, heading back to Mali where they helped destabilize that country. So far, the result has been a military coup by an American-trained officer; a takeover of some areas by Tuareg fighters of the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad, who had previously raided Libyan arms depots; and other parts of the country being seized by the irregulars of Ansar Dine, the latest al-Qaeda “affiliate” on the American radar. One military intervention, in other words, led to three major instances of blowback in a neighboring country in just a year.
"God of the church" versus "god of capitalism" is different spiritually, but from a social-economic standpoint, are direct competitors. According to a biographer of Mussolini, "Initially, fascism was fiercely anti-Catholic" — the Church being a competitor for dominion over the people's hearts.
The passport for conquering Africa may have shifted , but not the objective: a richer Western world - a poorer Africa.
This new god has even more efficient systems of creating new slaves and new clients. And as markets changed with politics the old best-seller (religion) started to become a hindrance to the expansion of globalized markets. But because of ways in which people see different configurations of power, there has been a failure to see that democracy is the fastest growing “religion”,(Bertrand Russell) far quicker to gain converts over diverse populations than any other ideology in history.
Religion would not have allowed such flexibility in justifying neocolonialism. Religion would have struggled to invent a system to make the entire world a Theater of War. But under the banner of democracy US foreign policy is justified to jump across people’s borders and take at will. But what has Democracy achieved in the USA? (See External Link)
Listen to the language "IMMINENT THREAT"  Washington is telling the World that their victims are "A threat to world peace" "American Foreign policy keeps the world safe" Someone must have torn out a few pages from their history book. How many times this trick works depends on our ability to have historical consciousness.
I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.—Smedley D. Butler
There is a direct inheritance of methodologies between the witch hunts that burned people at the stake in the Middle Ages into Salem America right into the 50’s with McCarthy’s Second Red Scare: Continued today in more sophisticated ways by the patriot act. The villain has gone from Witch, to Communist to Islamist: The configurations of power have gone from Church to State one casting out demons the other casting out communism and so-called terrorist. Witch-hunts have a peculiar benefit for the accuser even in Africa, as in Salem America, they often leave the accusers with the property of the so-called witches. In the witch hunt to create a “safer world” free from terrorism/Islam it results in the political expansion of Western interest in the globe.
And while national identities of Iran can be built up around the Shia religion, due to its homogenious nature, the same is true for the way identities in South Africa may be built around "us Zulus" it is very difficult to do this is plural multi-cultural nations. War gives that identity (Hedges, 2003) and meaning to being American. It started from their creation; America vs. British, American vs. Communist threat, America vs. [Insert anything]. And this sense of us vs. them is no different to the divisiveness set up in race and religion. If anything it is worse because it can be extended to include more disparate people.
If you look at any conflict; Nigeria, Somalia, Palestine, or even Darfur, we can choose to identify the agent of the conflict as religious difference. However, very few in Nigeria are killing anyone because of a spiritual disagreement over a verse in the Qur'an. In Nigeria, for example, the North is relatively barren; education and infrastructure are also suffering compared to the South. There is also what is perceived as a Europeanized colonized mentality, which is more pronounced in the Southern territories that have a greater history of Western acquiesce. And this is very similar to the issues between what is now Northern and Southern Sudan, although it is articulated through an Arab supremacy lens: Divided loyalties between Arabization and Europeanization create far more animosity than Islam versus Christianity.
So an attack often has in religious characteristics; attacking a church for example. But deep within the belly of the problem is always some idea of inequity or entitlement.
So powerful are these myth or religion and conflict it forces itself upon conflicts void of religious issues. So the mere utterance of Darfur is assumed to have in religious elements despite all the evidence and detail that says both groups are Islamic. Still it is shaped as somehow a religious conflict and again the natural the demon is Islam.
The purpose of the news is for making the dirty actions of politics justifiable to the common man— That is it— It serves no other serious purpose apart from selling fear and Justine Biber CDs, or who is sleeping with who. To understand the news, you first understand spheres of political interest. And despite the complex and dynamic world we live in, it is shocking the lack of diversity of opinion when it comes to some topics.
CNN is Lord's gospel: Al-Qaeda is who we are supposed to be worried about, Iran and Islam. Chavez and N Korea, Malema and Mugabe. Where, and when, did the victims of persecution, or the armies of resistance become the villains?—on TV. In Vietnam, in the conquest of America from the natives Americans, in Iraq, in every Western conflict the victims were categorized into "worthy" and "unworthy" depending upon Western interest in the conflict (Manufacturing Consent, Chomsky). And what the powers in power are hoping and praying for is that people do not engage their sagacious senses, and ask the critical questions. The average Malian thinks the Western Europe is a savior, like the people in Kenya and all over Africa—The legacy of colonialism. If we spoke to the common man in Mali, he will say "please Obama help us", why would he say this? Because he has worse news on himself than we have on him.
For Europeans self-interest is an innate and unconscious act which requires no conspiracy theories or plotting to align and work in unison. The only people who do not behave like this are people so mentally oppressed they do as Malcolm suggest and worry about their master’s house first.
Orwell wrote that:
Now in South Africa, where there is no issue of “being in power too long.” People see democracy as the highest human achievement, despite the fact that the majority are poor and uneducated. So the power of the media can make you believe dirt is more valuable than gold. Your people can be starving, despondent, uneducated, violent, but as long as your democracy rotates puppets every 5 years and supports globalization then nothing else matters. In Israel democracy is like musical chairs-- one time it is Bibi, next time it is Peres again; all hawks, all oppressive to their Arab demographic.
Fiscally and politically, Al-Qaeda™ is the best thing for US foreign policy, it is a check they can cash in a million times without exhausting its reserves. Every Psychologist will tell you the more you repeat something—true or false, it becomes “truer” with every repetition. Until the reader accepts the information and the natural mental barriers of interrogation are destroyed: The mind no longer says “Wait a minute now, that doesn’t make sense.” And what is making it worse is once upon a time we might have had 20 different media outlets, today there are about 5 majors. Then news in Africa comes direct from a Western feed, (copy and pasted into Zulu, Amharic and Swahili) how can we ever know the truth when they all repeat the same lies?
And this is beyond argument evident in how two actions are written about depending on the parties involved. If a man who happens to be Muslim goes on a killing spree it is "Muslim fanatic goes mad, "if a Christian does it, it is simple "Man goes mad." So likewise every conflict in Africa needs to be packaged into little bundles of "heart of darkness"—reassuring the cultural supremacy of European people over African people. It is then easy to continue to say "those savages over there."
If Boko Haram (like the rebels in Libya) were pro-Western, the reports would be radically different, you would not hear the term "menace", "extremist", "Islamist". You would hear how just their cause was, how oppressive the government was, how the government was "killing the people" you would hear a lot more about their rights to self-determination. And all the evidence of this pattern of giving support or giving condemnation is in the history books; in Eastern Timor, in Afghanistan during the Cold War.
There is no point listing the news agency of South Africa or Kenya as they are basically regurgitating opinions from Reuters and the like. And just like no one reads the Sun (UK) for accuracy, all of the above should be treated with suspicion based upon each media groups interest block. Further reading on critical issues needs to happen in order to understand the root of the conflict and the motives behind misreporting or spinning information.
It is almost like you have a civil war, or any conflict and there seems to be a special category when the violence is put under the banner of "Islam." War is the most ugly aspect of human culture, it has no equal, it is the most base form of disagreement. But all over this world people clash and you get the exact same consequences as seen in so-called sectarian conflict, yet Western media and their apes in Africa want to isolate it into religion. "They are burning, looting and raping in Mali"; to add to the story of Al-Qaeda in the area. But ask "Are not all civil wars/conflicts like this?" "They chopped off some ones hand" (In South Africa they do worse, pretty common street justice in many parts of Africa, in Saudi they take your head, in Texas they fry you), and all of the news items globally why do these things become so notable? Even when churches are attacked by non-Muslims they twist the facts to finger Islam. Inter-clan violence is so common, but only one type of inter-clan violence gets this special focus --Why? Boko also bombs Mosque, kill Muslims. So why fan the flame by making religion the absolute root of conflict?
Skilled, just like the West, that celebrates him so much and allows this fiction writer to speak with such authority on complex Nigerian affairs. As nuanced as a 9 year old child in his assessment of politics, it remains unclear what sophistication he adds to understanding our contemporary world. (just compare his words to any real political expert on terrorism or civil war)
The real issue with these post-Colonial Nigerian thinkers is they were made in a colonial world of White supremacy, no matter how they resist they are still products of thinking in those terms. They dream in a white, and are bitter when they awake to realize it was just a dream. Soyinka then has to show the West just how anti-African he is. The colonial voice is rooted deep inside his breath. So the problem is always going to be lens through the Western dichotomy of Secular vs. Religious.
There is again no denying the problematic "religious" overtones which formulate the foundational ideal of supremacy. But this is not unique to religion, these notions exist in EVERY SINGLE opposition. Fidel held Socialism above Capitalism, and fought for that. Iran held Islam above Western Puppetry and fought for that. Mao held Chinese communism as supreme and killed millions for that. America holds the religion of so-called Democracy above everyone else's system and Soyinka and friends fight for that, with the very belief that this democratic religion is better for everyone. So much so this century is marred with the bodies of those who disagreed. (And this article does not deal with if one is better than the other, just that they are both systems with almost identical personalities).
HOW BBC TELLS LIES
BBC reports "Islamist Seize Key town in Mali" where the reporter states: "residence say Islamist link to Al-Qaeda have taken over the building" (one example) now that entire sentence is deceptive. Residence never said anything about Al-Qaeda — promise you that — that's is a D.C Agenda. But the statements gives false authority to the claim of the Al-Qaeda global infestation .
Now if Mali has Al-Qaeda, and US has a war against this fictional CIA creation, then it can send in the drones (like Yemen). USA helps the colonial puppets (current Mali government) with these "Terrorist" by association. Legally, once you are a terrorist the rules of war change. US invades or uses proxy, once in you cannot get them out (Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq). Once in that is neo-colonialism and they have another region under control.
They will tell you about "rebel" when the rebels are prepared to negotiate a better deal for Western interest. Power vacuums do not attract ethical leadership only opportunists, which will always have some despicable accomplice willing to push the "CALL D.C" panic button and renegotiate.
Nigeria knows full well to sing the "terrorist song" , just like babies know to cry for food. It doesnt take deep anylasis to be hip to tired trick of calling your enemeies terrorist to get Western support. Nothing to do with the people, but all to do with your own political survival.
THE CONSTANT FACE OF WAR AND CONFLICT
In every conflict you get lotting and rape, things get burnt, people get killed, this is what war means-- and hence why some struggle so hard to avoid anything resembling violence. in the 1960's America hatched out the term "dirty war"-- all war is dirty. But the warmongering West are dictating the terms of engagement to give them a strategic advantage. How can the Palestinians fight Israel 1:1 when one group has homemade bombs and the other group has state-of-the-art weaponry? All violent conflicts engage the same ugly tactics to achieve their end. The USA is a master of this, but because they are even better masters of propaganda they are able to spin their actions and allow different definitions for the very same actions.
The media has a few favorite words, one of them is extremist. However, the reason for the "extremism" is never explained-- but carries so much vitriol in it you don't need anything else. But what about White Supremacy, is that not extreme from the point-of-view of the African? What about US imperialism is that not extremist? So Western mis-education is very extreme for us Africans. So restoring our center cannot be extremist. And what the world has done to us as a people is make even wearing our African clothes "Radical," It has made the Muslim who wants to be ruled by a Islamic system-- as opposed to a Western one-- Extremist. Extremist is a relative term it holds no value other than political propaganda.
I called up a few people we (family friends, work friends) have in Mali, (Mopti, Bamoko and Timbuktu), all occupy different spectrums of the society. But we heard vastly different stories. One brother is just your average Joe, reported verbatim what you read on CNN. Asked him what he has actually seen. "nothing" he might as well be in Chicago then. But there is a lot of external Western backing/support for people rallying energy for invasion. When people start chatting they give away their sources by the language they use. In News, when you work for Reuters or the like, you get directives on language usage. So every time they say Mandela, they insert "a hero of the anti-apartheid movement", when the mention Northern Mali, they auto insert "Al-Qaeda" cohorts, when they said Gaddafi, tyrant and despot. None of these "terrorist" charges, liberally applied to the diverse resistance in Northern Mali, have actually been confirmed as absolute fact--makes no difference--it makes America's case. This is how news mixes its own agenda, with reality reporting. See (Chomsky)
There are only so many channels of info in this world. Even if you live in Mali you can be a victim of Western News (esp) since they want the locals to support the invasion (just like Iraq). Like in the WW2 movies, every man, woman and child, waving a Yankee/British flag, welcoming the conquer: 'Well at least they will be no more forced marriages and hand chopping, we will give up everything to stop that,' the conquered sigh to themselves. Just ask that same flag waving Iraqi how did it work out for them, this Western liberation thing?
That split occurs when Western forces seek to pacify opposition from a faith that is equipped to be a enduring tool of resistance. (Sudan, Crusades, Algiers, Somalia, Afghanistan, etc).
Radicalism and fundamentalism, when they exist, and they do exist, can only be defined by authentic representatives of the faith, not by the Islamic scholars for dollars; but by the Qur'an and Hadith. We cannot live in a multicultural world where elements of Islam are first filtered for Western acceptance before being deemed acceptable. And there is no escape or propaganda that can change the core tenants of Islam, there is no degree of acquiesce in leadership that can make Islam some spiritual hocus pokus with no political teeth.
What is loosely, nebulous, hypocritically, termed the war on terror™ is a Western response to a failure of convention treatment to resistance stemming from “religious” fervor. Conventional treatment for Pan-Africanism, strains of socialism, and other social dissenting movements was be to throw money at the problem. However, this conventional treatment of trinkets for opinions fails at every conceivable level with the so-called Islamist. You cannot offer them alcohol, positions, money, not even a billion dollars, in exchange for acquiesce. Because the antibodies in the Islamist ecosystem are vulgarly intolerant to accommodating anything which remotely smells Western. What Islam, as the spiritual motivational energy, therefore represents—in its most resistant strain—is a serious impasse, an “unknown” obstacle to any imposition. As it fails to respond to conventional treatment, the West has deployed unconventional treatment. In comes the media to brand any and all forms of religious dissent (violent or non-violent) to imperialism as extremist, hardline, radical. The nebulous nature of language mask realities, blurs objectives, so much so the sole arbiter on what constitutes terrorism, radicalism is control by one player.
And when there is a fundamentalist element in some applications of Islam, then it must be fighting a fundamentalist element in Western foreign policy. And why is Zionism, the Western created and approved system of extremist fundamentalist, which governs Israel not classified in this way? Why are the numerous occupations under Western foreign policy not labeled as a form of terrorism and extremism? It is very hard to seriously engage extremism when it does occur when disingenuous agendas labeling even seeking a Sharia state a form of terrorism--it is not, unless self-determination is no longer a human right.
With regard to Nigeria the West is fully aware, above a certain intellectual readership level, that religion is not a key factor in the conflict:
Sectarian conflict erupted also in 1967, when three primarily Igbo eastern states seceded under the name Republic of Biafra, sparking a bloody three-year civil war. The attempt to break away ultimately failed, and Nigeria reintegrated the Igbo majority region in 1970. So this is the history of nationhood, why is religion painted all over it because the North is pro-Sharia. The critical objectives are no different, (regardless of the political language used) to the idea of entitlement to govern their own affairs because of a perceived inequity in the current political formation.Nigeria would have no problem with Boko had it not itself been so corrupt and so terrible at oil wealth distribution. This inequity created the vacuum for the emergence of Boko Haram. Boko uses terrorism, not because they love it, but to force themselves into a position of power. The same way Syria uses Hezbollah against Israel to force a resolution over the Golan Heights occupation.
But regardless of how much information is presented, the dead heads of this world will always go with the most emotional opinion which makes their rants hotter to the uninformed masses. Fingering religion in Africa is a far more compact sound bite than going into the ins and outs of inequity and entitlement.
In absence of religious disagreement Somalia has not seen peace in decades. In absence of religious tension Rwanda was the worse ethnic crisis by African hands. In the absence of religion Ethiopia and Eritrea are bitter. In absences of religion, Congo is a human rights disaster. If places like Somalia tell us anything it is that sameness is not a solution to conflict in Africa. Even before there were Sunni and Shia, Islam, just like Christianity, was plagued with conflict—despite being ideologically “monolithic” and in its infancy. And it is the same for all ideologies—political, social or religious.
Religious agreement has rarely secured peace, while we have all the evidence of who unified some communities has b despite having diverse communities; Tanzania being one. And Ethiopia is proving to be another.
But let us take a few steps back for a history lesson. Democracy took its course in the West can be traced back to the Ancient Greeks. For all of this time in evolution (uninterrupted evolution) when did Africans get the right to be human? When did Africans get the right to vote? When did women get the right to vote? Where human rights is concern, democracy is a newbie. Where rules of war are concern -- it just arrived late. Africans could vote in Sokoto and Ancient Ethiopia, and even Ancient Saudi Arabia, long before the Civil Rights Struggle. Women were voting in Africa long before the feminist movement.
Don’t let power configurations confuse or blur the issue, anyone using force of war on innocent non-combatant people is a terrorist. Why is this obvious opinion not common knowledge because this word “terrorism” is used by the person writing the newspaper to define the forces they are fighting against—like the barbarian in Greek writings.
You cannot resign a person’s motives or arguments to nonsense, irrational and crazy without deeper interrogation of their arguments. What is more terrifying than being chained and put on a European ship and taken away into 300 years of night? What is more terrifying that being a Palestinian family being bombed by an Israeli tank? Is that not terrorism? What about the threat of invasion the West holds over the heads of the entire developing world if they fail to conform and submit to their power dominance? Why is terrorism always linked today to something “religious”?
America has not only the power to broadcast their violent rhetoric they have the power to back it up with the military. And the world is in terror wondering about the consequences of their words. How many people died because of Bush? How many people died because of Anwar? What was his real crime? One American critic of the War on Terror Paul Craig Roberts wrote Awlaki gave "sermons critical of Washington's indiscriminate assaults on Muslim peoples" who "told Muslims that they did not have to passively accept American aggression". He called the assassination by Obama "The Day America Died" as the US lacked evidence either Awlaki were real threats or Al-Qaeda® operatives. For the open minded person isn't that what Obama is doing when he and every American president speaks about the patriotic duty of every America to wage war in the name of the American flag?
Let us be honest, America has an air tight campaign of hegemony. It first neutralizes you with the media, it then demonizes any ideological forms of rebellion by labelling such ideas as Islamist, it then has the right to war, but no one has the right to defend, it has the right to nuclear weapons but no one else can use them. The right to take your oil, the right to force you to trade, the right to cross your borders at will, and the right to make propaganda films to justify all of the above.
How many non-combatant Westerners have these "terrorist" killed in post 9/11 - now? So what is Obama "defending" his nation against? He is really defending his nation's imperialist interest: And slipping people's names (even his own citizen's names) on an unchallengeable HIT LIST. It can be argued that most "terrorist" are defensive or reactionary to Western foreign policy. In a simple analysis the best way to stop terrorism is to leave them alone. No terrorist has ever made plans to attack Switzerland or Barbados. Terrorist do not actually want to "take over the world", but American politicians do. One group is housed within the framework of "religion" the other "political" blurring the obvious similarities from view.
Most Islamic terrorist are not even religious people, they however are always political people. Do we really believe the Palestine fighting for a liberated Palestine are praying 5 times a day and fighting for Islamic rule? And even if they want that, isn't it a basic human right of self-determination? Why would Islamic people with a complete "superior" system of governance want to be ruled with a European capitalist incubator called democracy? And the paradigm applies beyond religion, why would Africans with their own systems need to import improper Western failures to govern any aspect of their life?
The motives for terrorism always come back to entitlement and especially inequity. As Cabral said no one is fighting for the ideas in your head. So-called terrorist are people who have been denied a forum for redress their grievances and in that vacuum, overwhelmed by inequity they take extreme methods. To break the yoke of apartheid terrorism was a vital tool, to end the evils of slavery terrorism was used to weaken the viability of enslavement. Terrorism is neither here nor there in the true language of human conflict—only a methodology of conflict; defined in an out of reality by Western self-interest.
Like it or not, sharia is just another political system. The West doesn't like it the same way Apple doesn't like PC, it is a competitor. Not a product sold by Western foreign policy -- not on display, not for sale. No surprise that Secretary of state do not recommend any government using it. It is not even on the list of self-determined political systems you can chose from; only democracy made the list. You can have a Jewish "secular" state, which has religion determining "rights of return," and that is all Kosher, but a Sharia is Haraam.
What they will rarely tell you is many aspects of Sharia are discussed an adopted in Europe, especially directly in areas of community family law (UK, taking the strain off the overburdened courts), and especially in Islamic banking (South Africa, most of Europe), and indirectly in alcohol prohibition seen across Europe and America.
So then why should we be afraid because Northern Nigerians and Somalis want it? Two systems that should make us run to the hills are, “freemarket” and “neo-liberal globalization,” but the advocates of these systems happen to own the media machine. If the people see merit in its configurations and power to govern then that is their business. A few years ago, before America allies disrupted the Islamic Courts (ICU) the so-called terrorist tried to close down the Khat mono-crop agriculture which is destroying Somalia. But even that progressive act was denounced as a "destructive" by Western news. But the Islamic Courts mission is : To bring social justice and combat iniquity thus after capturing Mogadishu it brought Sharia law back to Somalia and re instituted the constitution. Replacing the word "Islam" with "democracy" what is the difference from a purely political point of view? Both can have death penalty, both have a way of marginalizing "the other", you can vote in both systems.
Can you imagine how hard it would be for news groups and American foreign policy to come back every day with a new "terrorist" cell made up of 2-4 people? People would get confused. So create one big ugly boogie man and give that entity a simple name that American can brand.
SHARIA - SELF-DETERMINATION
The issue of Shariah as a seperate discourse for African nations is a seperate debate, but to touch on it, under the rights of self-determination there are no taboos on religious parties, then their is nothing in any charter that says every nation must follow the Western democratic model, this is not the 11th commandment or the 6th pillar of Islam. The primary issues around Sharia, in any form, would be its ability to deliver justice across any religious divide. Already Islam has a history of tolerance against minorities, this is built in, hard wired into the very DNA of Sharia (see Islamic Spain) so dealing equitable with diversity cannot be held as a charge against establishing sharia. All other objections are moot. And Sharia is a viable alternative for Muslim communities under the universal values of self-determination. No longer can the old canards be used to conjurer up images of women walking 5 paces behind, or women covered up in nets, this is just one extreme expression of sharia, no different to America's extreme expression of imposing democracy.
Those who attack the self-determination of nations to seek an Islamic identity never seem to deny Israel right to defend at all cost its Jewish 'Democratic ' identity. So how is Islam such a taboo in Muslim majority countries, especially when the caveat is always on 'plural Democratic '(i.e. the fate of non-Muslims in a Muslim governing system) grounds but why is Jewish State and 'democracy ' not seen as an oxymoron?  All calls for "multiculturalism" in this so-called democracy are seen as antisemitic by the upper leadership and much of the GOP types. But groups such as Adalah ("Justice" in Arabic) are marginalized (see religious based discrimination in Israel)
When he published his book in 1896, "The Jewish State", he declared that the cure for anti-Semitism was the establishment of a Jewish state. As he saw it, the best place to establish this state was in Palestine. God was used only as a means to and end, and the hotter the fire of anti-Semitism the stronger the argument for the establishment of a Jewish state. But Palestinian people have not been known for any crimes against their Jewish neighbors until the 1920s when Eastern European and Russian Ashkenazi Jews started to descend on Palestine with the idea that that they were going to return to their "ancient roots"; something which was all part of the planned national mythology since Eastern European Jews and Russians never had any roots in the Levant.
Religious designations are sometimes used out of sheer convenience, as well as opportunism motives, for cultural and historical differences between combatants, giving the often misleading impression that the conflict is primarily about religious differences. For example, there is a common perception of the conflict in Northern Ireland is a religious conflict, as one side (Nationalists) was predominantly composed of Catholics and the other (Unionists) of Protestants. So in characterizing or naming the belligerents we can see how Catholic versus Protestant comes into vogue. However, the more fundamental cause in fact ethnic or nationalistic rather than religious in nature. Since the native Irish were mostly Catholic and the later British-sponsored immigrants were mainly Protestant, the terms become shorthand for the two cultures, but it highly inaccurate to describe the conflict as a religious one.
Umar Tall (political leader, Islamic scholar, and Toucouleur military commander who founded a brief empire encompassing modern Guinea, Senegal, and Mali) during ( 1797 - 1864 ). His campaigns have been naturally characterized as religious jihads converting numerous people's in his wake (Bambara, etc). It is easy to generalize his conquest as non-Muslim Africans. This is the easy lens to describe what characterized both sides. But the danger in doing so makes opaque reality. Umar Tall was, like any other military general, a conquer. He equally conquered Muslim states, he even attempted to conquer Norther modern Mali. (Tuareg defeated him). Now the pattern of religious conquest has lost its pattern. It is pretty evident he would have used religious rhetoric to carry out his assaults and to justify his conquest. But how is this unique, when America does it 24/7 in their mission of : Democracy and Security, In God we Trust, God Bless America?
Historians such as Jonathan Kirsch have made links between the European inquisitions, for example, and Stalin's persecutions in the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, McCarthy blacklists, and other secular events as being the same type of phenomenon as the Spanish inquisition—the difference is exclusively a self-serving point-of-view. Others, like Robert Pape, a political scientist who specializes in suicide terrorism, have made a case for secular motivations and reasons as being foundations of most suicide attacks that are often times labeled as "religious"
This comes as bad news to the Zionist run Jihad-watch campaign that profits from demonizing Islam. Every suicide attack brings further proof and justification for their “them” against those “evil Muslims” cause. As stated before it is far easier to deal with religion as the cause than US foreign policy or even better neo-liberal globalization. How would Jihad watch look if they said these people are fighting against Western imperialism—no – it is far easier to say “religious nuts”—which then justifies imperialism. So when they invaded Iraq they were not fight soldiers defending their homes, but radical Islam. The invasion of Afghanistan and Somali was not people fighting for their land and resources but a bunch of Al-Qaeda friends. But this is nothing new, the so-called myth of the savage Red man was created by the propagandist. It worked so well that the observer never asked what was the White man doing coming all the way from Europe in someone else’s country and killing them for fighting for their land. These Native Americans were “crazy” for doing so.
Dr Kenny Langa-Smith stumbled across a map of Mali from the website of African Oil Corp – one of the international oil companies with exploration stakes in Mali. Langa-Smith’s face lights up, and his tone gets increasingly animated, as he walks us through the thought process that led him to the Eureka moment:[Paula Akugizibwe]
“So I’m looking at this map of Mali and I see the capital city, Bamako, and three other places: Timbuktu, Kidal, Gao…naturally, I assume it’s a mapping of terrorist activity, since these are the places are being targeted in the military intervention against AQIM [Al Qaeda in the Islamic Mahgreb].” Under pressure from the US and the EU to respond to the terrorist threat posed by AQIM, West African countries have developed an invasion plan to reclaim the North of Mali from Islamic extremists. The plan will be implemented in the coming few months – despite reiterations by Islamic group Ansar Dine, which controls much of Northern Mali, that they denounce extremism and are open to diplomatic negotiations. African soldiers will be on the ground in the line of fire; while Western countries will provide support through their air forces, drones from Afghanistan and military training. “But as I take a closer look at the map,” continued Langa-Smith, “I realise – wait a second, this has nothing to do with the upcoming war on Islamic extremism. This map is about oil exploration blocks – it’s only that hotspots of terror also happen to be hotspots of oil and gas. And I’m thinking back on Libya, and I start getting this crazy idea, I’m wondering, could there be a link between oil and terror?”
Often presented in mainstream media as a ‘beacon of democracy’ in west Africa, the Mali government was little more than a corrupt and pliant neo-colonial regime before last year when the U.S.-trained and equipped Mali army twice overthrew it – in March and again in December. The Mali army now scrambling to fight alongside its French big brother was condemned and boycotted by the U.S., Europe and Canada during a brief, sham interlude of concern following the first coup.[Roger Annis]
But the minute you start sending French controlled black armies into Mali, then we will end up with another Hot Zone on the Earth -- Like Libya, Afghanistan or Iraq. And the same French who spoke about end the dictatorship, and "free" yourself are now recommending martial law because the violence, post-Gadaffi is off the scale. (all of this is on record). War is totally avoidable in Mali, diplomacy is the only solution, especially if the Western aligned governments sincerely care about "peace, historical sites, and regional stability"
The entire sahel region, like the so-called Middle East, has always had jockeying powers, thats the way history is. Before Islam, with Islam, with colonialism, after colonialism, one truth holds out -- people want power. However, the imposed Bambara government was a colonial choice.
In about 1770, the Tuareg took possession of Gao, and in 1787 they entered Timbuktu and abolished the office of the Pasha.
Turareg, Fula and Moors joined forces and fought off Umar Tall's attempts and conuering the region in 1863. People who are ignorant of their history are very easy to exploit, even easier to control. Let us reflect back on Nasir Ul-Din in the 16th century who wages a war (Jihad) against the invading Europeans, on his side was the poor -- the people. On the other side was not only the Western armies but the treacherous African elite. This is just to give some background to the age of the territorial dispute which is often trivialized in Western Media with a utter destain of the sophistication behind conflicts in Africa. Mali has historically faced many threats, just like any other high resource city (Jerusalem, Rome, Tokyo, Mombasa, Cape Town, etc).
Long before democracy was exported to Africa as the benchmark model of success, long before America was founded Mali was governed by a system that sustained the region for over 1000 years. So why is Sharia so unbearable and blasphemous to the secular leaders and their Western pay masters. It is not a religious problem as the majority are Muslim. So the issue must be in the fact that Sharia is bad for business, bad for the current leadership illegitimate positions secured by Western funds, bad for Laissez Faire, bad for free markets, bad for proxy, bad for neocolonialism.
France24 When it started all we knew was the separatist. They, the Tuareg, were the only candidates for Bad Boy status. Fast forward a few months, Asar Dine came into the public, they became the REAL Bad boys because of their Shariah Agenda (public floggings, banning music, forced marriages, chopping limbs). Sharia became the toss up for the Kool drinking public and shallow academics; sharia vs. secular. Later on we hear the Tuareg were the okay bad guys, we can talk to them. Recently they became heroes when they gave up their claims altogether. If you have never seen a conflict you might not realize that as bad as things are, people talk and make deals. The man who can make the best deal with the Devil is the victor.
As big as this planet is everything is interconnected, and delicate balances are in place. It may seem like having a "regime change in Libya" would be contained. Well it wasn't. When arroagnance decides nations fate from within in Beltway --expect terrible side effects. Imposing is imposing, regardless of if it is sharia or democracy. We have seen people in Egypt lean towards Islamic governance, then that is okay. But any kind of force is always going to be a problem.
We hear about 300,000 fleeing the North. Well how many fled the assaults in Iraq and Libya? How many fled Katrina? People tend to flee any conflict/disaster. But the Western press makes us join Sharia and Fleeing to imply one is creating the later. Not the case.
UPDATE | In the evolution of war rhetoric a rebel group has gone from rebels to terrorist with those obvious unavoidable unproven links to the mythical ubiquitous Al-Qaeda. Timbuktu it seems was the cherry on the top to get the world to cry, the war -- as in the case of Libya-- has its justification. How to do the job is just a technicality. There is a new scramble for Africa- can you count? Somalia , Uganda, bases in Ethiopia, Libya, Ivory Coast, and now Mali. As always there is a good reason for occupation. As always fears, and ignorance combined have practically caused us to drop our guard and be set-up for the play. The naive and the dull, again, did not see it coming. Like lambs to the slaughter. They think the wolf is a liberator, and so blinded by the propaganda that they do not see the new war for Africa is in full swing.
Weather forecast for Africa | The safest African countries to be in right now are the ones with the biggest puppets; Storms in Somali, Mali, Sudan, clouds in Zimbabwe, etc. Guinea is a mess, but South Africa is safe, Malawi is secured, Ethiopia is airtight, Ivory Coast secured, Rwanda secured, working on Nigeria and Mali, Libya is WIP, Egypt is TBA .
In 1890, the French, allied with the Bambara, entered Ségou, and Ahmadu Tall fled to Sokoto in present-day Nigeria, marking the effective end of the Toucouleur Empire. The French colonized all of Mali, and when that ended they passed it onto the Bamabara elite.
New | Ibn Taymiyya (1703-1791) (from what is today Turkey) opposed giving any undue religious honors to shrines. He (his personal view and not an absolute principle of Islamic belief) took issue with anything which rivalled, in any way the Islamic sanctity of the two most holy mosques within Islam, Mecca (Masjid al-Haram) and Medina (Al-Masjid al-Nabawi [Prophet's Mosque]). Now to take what is a fringe view and impose it with such vigor is clearly the thinking of religious zealots. It is extreme and fringe, even among less moderate Muslims. It is very clear in Islam that going through saints is a serious taboo. But in Sufi Islam it is less of a taboo, and this issue has always been an ideological conflict. It is ceratinly not an "African vs. Other" issue, as the issue of intercession is found everywhere in the Muslim world--especially Southern Asia. But even in Wahaabi dominated Saudi Arabia not one single tomb has been destroyed. The very tomb of the Prophet of Islam is no different from the tombs being destroyed in Timbuktu. Yet even in radical Saudi no one would dare level them to the ground because of saint worship (which occurs).
100 days in Rwanda -- Silent, where were they then? 2006, Israel slaughters how many? - No big deal. But today UNESCO et al are telling us about the tombs of Muslim African saints. France is worried about our security (and theirs). As the late Michael Jackson clearly and succinctly said "they do not care about us."
From Darfur article | BBC and Western media manipulated the language "Arab" and "Janjaweed" to create spheres of concerns which services their own agenda. One would fall of the chair if you actually saw these so-called Arab Janjaweed. "Arab" is used to refer to people who speak Arabic as a first language in different parts of the non-Arab Muslim world, including Northern Ethiopia, where "Arab" is interchanged with Muslim, without any implication of someone being Arab racially. Anyone who gets on a horse is practically a Janjaweed—that's all it meant pre-Darfur. The West and their Zionist allies manufactured antagonist to services their own agenda. Lost was the core reason for the plight of Darfur. It was amazing to see in recent reports how many Americans still believe Darfur was Muslims killing non-Muslims. Despite the undeniable fact, Darfur is exclusively Muslim. So an ethnic conflict got turned into a racial - religious conflict even in absence of these roots.
Southern Sudan | While it is hard to expect the South to put up with the Northern contempt and domination it is still a muted victory for Southern Sudan who will now be targeted by Western agendas and imperialism because of the pressure from under-development. Some analysts keep fingering Islam vs. Christianity as the root of the conflict. And it is one accurate way to characterise the belligerents. (see notes on this) However, the state authorities say more than 600 people from the Nuer community were killed, 200 children abducted, and as many as 25,000 cows were stolen. The attackers - from the Murle ethnic group - were responding to a recent assault by Nuer fighters in which an estimated 400 Murle were killed—not the first time (see 1991 Bor Massacre). But this is also happening everywhere especially the Jonglei state. No so-called "Arabs" no "Islam" and most of all no religion to blame this time. What we see, more so than "religion" is an ethnic conflict of interest over resources. Religion certainly is a key factor but more in describing the conflicting groups. beyond that it is the old notions of "the other" where the other is backward, primitive, lazy, etc.
HRW | Across the country, security forces fail to prevent violence, and have themselves been responsible for unlawful killings, torture, and looting of civilian property. South Sudan's prison population contains many who are arbitrarily detained without lawful basis and the lack of capacity and insufficient training among police, prosecutors, and court officials results in human rights violations in other areas of the administration of justice. Women and girls are subjected to forced or early marriage and domestic violence, and such abuses often occur with impunity 
The Brown (Islamic Arab) vs. Black (African) is just a tidy way for simple minds to understand a complex morass. Less "Black vs Arab" and more "I Want vs. You have." For western designs, religion and race is a just convenient package. Who wants to be bored with the reality of a South complicity in Europeanization and a North complicit in Arabization - too complex a story to fit in a CNN headline, too texty to fit in a Tweet. Who wants to deal with that ugly human personality of greed, which lives and breaks out whenever opportunity and notions of entitlement rise up? And if your car is not starting, and you think it is the battery; after replacing the battery, and the car still doesn't start you should rule out that factor. And likewise; with religion and without religion, the region is a hot bed for conflict. Religion was never a dominant factor, more over ethnic difference. And in absence of the Arabized master, new masters arise to fill those boots. Fixing Sudan means understanding issues beyond the party-line.
Contrary to urban myth the North do not hate the South for their "black" skin, well, no more than Ethiopia hates Somalia for their Islamic ways. And all of that bombing the North was doing was intended to soften up the South so they could have greater power of negotiation. It was not moral, it was practical. It was not, as some simpletons put it, a racial issue, a religious issue, or any issue other than political expediency.
Now the oppression of Khartoum has been removed, China et al is supplying them with arms to tear each other apart. SSLA and SPLA have battled each other in 2010 and 2011. No "Arab" did not mean all of Southern Sudan's issues would disappear: no Arab presence is not a panacea for African progress, and the same goes for Europeans--with or without a deeper problem lingers. Because from the start the issues in Africa are never so binary. All the reports from South Sudan testify to this analysis.
The thirty Year war in Europe on the side of the Lutheran Sweden and the last of the Thirty Years War was essentially a battle between Habsburgs and the Bourbons, the two great Catholics dynasties of Europe. Many other factors override religion in these examples. John Bossy describes the shift from religious to secular as “migration of the holy from the church to the state. The state became the new religion with all the properties, all the loyalties but none of the limitations of the so-called church.
In the late 1500’s- 1600’s Catholic churches and Protestant churches worked together to kill a third group, the Anabaptists. On the surface, this is a story of two warring churches, banding together in light of the extreme depravity of this third movement—the Anabaptists. The world has become so accustom to this narrative that it is used as irrefutable evidence of the myth of religion and violence in human societies: A myth which justifies the utter separation of church and state. But reality shows that the Anabaptists were not being killed by the Protestant or Catholic churches as such, because churches "as such" simply did not exist. Anabaptists were being killed by princes of provinces, which were either Protestant or Catholic provinces. Is this religious violence or secular? No such distinctions can be made. But in the case of motivation, the distinction is clearer. Anabaptists were being killed not over exegetical or theological issues as such, but for what was seen as treason.
Long before any imperialistic designs in the form of the Arab slavery or the European run Atlantic system, Africans had ancient trade relationships and via these conduits, ideologies, names, religion, culture went both way. This relationship is evident in Ancient Egypt. Much of that historical record is lost so the details of what is really native and what is introduced is forgotten. In any event, "purist history" is not history, but politics. Nuanced history rejects binary history, which is a product of Eurocentric orientalism. All the research now shows that Africans as a diverse group formed complex alliances (friends and foes) for a multifaceted set of reasons. These relationships did not follow modern binary black vs. white, or native vs. foreign.
In Ethiopia Ezana used Christian to create the great united Ethiopian Empire Abyssinia. In West Africa (Western Sudan) legends like Askia and Sunni Ber used Islam to unite large areas of Africa to produce the largest empire in African history. Other ethnic and ideological interest formed polities along their own political interest and sometimes these clashed with each other, sometimes they worked with each other. Those polities with the greatest mechanisms of unity became dominant. In Ethiopia Christianity gave an advantage, In the rest of Africa Islam gave advantage because it was non-ethnocentric (one reason) and had a sophisticated political creed. Both Christians and Muslims also had the advantage of greater political partnerships with non-African states bearing those faiths.
The Battle of Somb between Muslim Marabout and Serer people, clearly one side was Islamic and the other side was adherence to the Serer religion. But that does not mean the clash was over religion. Both groups were engaging in warfare in the interest of nation building and defence. The war would have gone ahead had the Muslim army been Jewish or even a rival religious group that was able to amass power. The Muslim-Christian wars of Ethiopia again expressed themselves along religious lines but they were also nation issues which were more in the foreground that the specific of religion.
A Good CIA Asset gone Bad
If Al-Qaeda is an linguistic invest it has been a lucrative investment indeed. This one word has expanded US hegemony faster than the breakup after Post WW2. Al-Qaeda has done more for US foreign policy than for any terrorist organization.
With all the US "intelligence" floating around and with satellites in space imaging every human movement Al-Qaeda® per Western reports is a logistical impossibility. How do they communicate (Facebook, Blackjack, Twiitter, Morse Code), how do they travel(United Airlines or Private Charters), where do they bank (Barclays or Citibank)?
What the world needs to know is that there is not much difference between Al-Qaeda®, Santa Claus and the Tooth fairy. All are largely figments of Western imagination. One rooted in fear, and the others in consumerism. And the same way Santa Claus gets around the world in just one day, every terrorist event on planet Earth is via the omnipresent agency of Al-Qaeda® and their ominous "Network of Terror."™ Al-Qaeda® is the face of evil for public convenience. Bin Ladin couldn't plan a birthday party, let alone any mass terrorist plot. It is clear from everything he is known to have said he lacked the intelligence and the resources to carry off anything but minor skirmishes. Some of his writings are tantamount to utter fantasies, devoid of logistic and the cold air of reality.
Two Dreams—Bush dreamed people would believe 9/11 was caused by Bin Ladin, and Bin Ladin dreamed he could have done it. Can you imagine how hard it would be for news groups and American foreign policy to come back every day with a new "terrorist" cell made up of 2-4 untrained ineffective people? People would get confused. So create one big ugly boogie man and give that entity a simple name that American can brand. Like the Gulf of Tonkin incident America is again at war with its imaginary foes.
There is absolutely no evidence in any record anywhere that shows so-called Wars in the name of God constitutes a major motive for wars—even when we factor in wars which have in religious overtones as “religious wars” still they are a substantial minority. And the table below only factors in warfare, it doesn't include the genocide and the Holocaust caused by people like Cortes, and Columbus who might have used the cloak of "religion" but like their descendents in the West today, killed entire nations for their resources. Despite Columbus causing the death far more than 6 Million he is a hero and his "Columbus day" celebrated by the victims of that Holocaust. 
* Wikipedia statistics
PROBLEM AND SOLUTION (AFRICA)
This is why slavery was so successful because regardless of what was happening on the coast Africans refused to put the difference aside and deal with a social dilemma—a Holocaust in which we still see the aftermath. This is why today in the Congo despite the horrors that Leopold brought, Africans celebrate him as the “bringer of civilization” , one person in Botswana said “When you walk into a village with a white person it is like walking with god”, another the “the good thing about slavery was I found Jesus.” The root of the problem is lack of consciousness and hence lack of agency. With or without Christianity you will find this mental condition all over Africa: In the villages in Benin and the mountains of Tanzania. Because Islam is generally non-White Muslim communities have a lower degree of White worship.
Some have the false beliefs that only the Abrahamic faiths bring religious tensions to the region. This is categorically disproven by the volume of conflicts which have always occurred without Abrahamic faiths: "Foreignness" is not a factor in the ferocity of the conflict. But because Abrahamic religions have greater ability to form larger cross-ethnic communities by that mere are more visible in terms of demographic. But that is a demographic issue i.e. if most people are Christian then there is a higher chance of a Christian person being involved in a conflict by mere numbers. And because Christianity is organized and defined it becomes easier in a lazy characterization to identity with the Christian identity.
What is painted as a religious problem is really an educational problem. Africans know less about each other than we realize. In this vacuum of information fear and distrust is fostered fanned on by self-serving leaders, opportunistic businessmen, irresponsible religious advocates, and idealistic nationalist. The uneducated non-worldly mind is easy prey to the cry of “religion”. Regardless of if it is the therapeutic calls of the Jesus priority jump up and down churches in South Africa and Nigeria, or the intolerance of so-called radical Islam in Somalia. The commonality in all these cases is intolerance and ignorance. Jesus is the priority and not Pan-Africanism therefore allowing ways to facilitate the exploitation of Africa as every issue is sorted out by “waiting for Jesus.” Intelligence and common sense is replaced by blind devotion or blind denial. And it is understandable that all human beings have used “divinity” to understand and process a complex world into simple discrete units of “good” versus “evil.”The challenge is how we save people from the Jesus dilemma especially found in evangelical aspects of Christianity. How do we save the Ethiopian from being so blinded by the Orthodox Church political power struggle with Muslims in Ethiopia that they see greater brotherhood. But the good news in places like Ethiopia is the government in the last 10 years has taken sincere steps to remedy this problem. Ethiopians have always forged a strong nationalist spirit, which has caused it to defend its borders against colonialism. In Ethiopia today both religions are given public space and the national TV regularly showcases educational programs. What happens is people are starting to see “we are not that different after all”. Every Christian in Ethiopia knows what Eid is about, and every Muslim understands Timket. The same is equally true for Tanzania and now South Africa (which has no history of religious conflict). To solve the race issue we do not sweep it under the carpet our stick our fingers in our ears and hum. We also do not deny race exist or advocate for its annulation as a solution. No, we engage it and deal with it as it is. Religion is part and parcel of Africa—has been from day dot—it will continue to be an aspect of humanity which can only be resolved with comprehension and tolerance.
When Mao said religion was poison what he really meant to say was religion was competition.
African, Arab and other non-Western nations would do wise to remember the core of Western politics is summarized as: There are no permanent friends or enemies, but permanent interests (Palmerston). From Sadaam to Noriega , From Gaddafi to Al-Qaeda all have learnt this lesson the hard way.
If we are looking to understand the pathology of conflict, in a bid to resolve it, we will fail if looking for the solutions in the wrong box. The doctor cannot be effective at curing cancer if he is misdiagnosing cancer as the common cold. Failure to understand addiction in any form makes solving it impossible. Hence why so much is invested in understanding the social and psychological aspects of addiction. In the old days of medicine a headache was cured by drilling holes in people’s heads. Bacterial diseases were believed to be demon possession. It is clear that misidentifying human conflict creates greater instability as the tools of resolution are servicing wrong areas. Someone might identify religion over agency and natural human power lust as the problem in Africa. After 200 years invested in this theory they will come to the realization that in the void of “religion” wars, strife, conflict still go on with equal ferocity: So misdiagnosis is a death sentence. Another path would be to deals with the roots of inequity and entitlement and create sustainable ways of dealing with human conflict.
If we are looking for reasons to disunite and satisfy populous rhetoric we can follow the path of every demigod that came to power. It is far easier to gain readership by inflaming the sensitive aspects in our society. Responsibility is the mark of maturity and it is with caution that the inflammatory subject of religion should be observed. Attacking anything sacred to any people is an act of inhumanity and disrespect to another human. While we should be critical of inherent dangers in the rise of commercialized Christianity or so-called elements of extremist Islam, or even regressive habits of indigenous faiths—we must always in the interest of unity speak balance and truth. Being African in the Pan-African set-up must mean more than black skin pigment. And if Africanity does not inform morality, responsibility and tolerance then it serves no function in advancing the Motherland.
2. Ali ibn Abi Talib (1984). Nahj al-Balagha (Peak of Eloquence), compiled by ash-Sharif ar-Radi. Alhoda UK. ISBN 0940368439.
8. Alioune Sarr, Histoire du Sine-Saloum. Introduction, bibliographie et Notes par Charles Becker, BIFAN, Tome 46, Serie B, n° 3-4, 1986–1987. pp 37-39
9.250th Anniversary Issue of The Harrisonian p.24 by way of A History of Harrison College A study of an elite educational institution in a colonial polity, by Ralph A Jemmott, 2006, Glebe Land,St. George, Barbados
11.Israel should remain a Jewish state Druze and Circassian leaders reject 'multi-cultural' constitution proposed by Israeli Arab group Adalah. http://www.haaretz.com/news/druze-circassian-forum-israel-should-remain-a-jewish-state-1.214417
Bertrand Russell claimed Communism behaved like a religion. It would therefore be fair to say they all behave like a religion and the distinction from a anthropological point-of-view is merely academic...It is also amazing how many critical thinkers and rational people like Russell feel into the easy and uncritical trap of assigning religion for the woes of humanity. It was accepted by a large intellectual generation and next to none of them bothered to go beyond this simplistic assumption. It was literally accepted on faith.