AP, 2/15/2011: Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood Plans to Form Political Party [Excerpts]—Egypt's long banned Muslim Brotherhood said Tuesday it intends to form a political party once democracy is established, as the country's new military rulers launched a panel of experts to amend the country's constitution enough to allow democratic elections later this year.
The panel is to draw up changes at a breakneck pace—within 10 days—to end the monopoly that ousted President Hosni Mubarak's ruling party once held, which it ensured through widespread election rigging.
The initial changes may not be enough for many in Egypt calling for the current constitution, now suspended by the military, to be thrown out completely and rewritten to ensure no one can once again establish autocratic rule. Two members on the panel said the next elected government could further change the document if it chooses.
[TBC: While the U.S. mainstream media can barely contain its glee, and celebrates the Egyptian revolution as a victory of "democracy," reports indicate that the 18-day mob in Cairo was largely orchestrated by American technology, with ties to the Council on Foreign Relations and the U.S. State Department. Google engineer WaelGhonim told CNN, "this revolution started on Facebook." The corporate-sponsored, nonprofit activist group, "Movements.org" also championed the Egyptian revolution. Co-founder Jared Cohen is "director of Google Ideas and an Adjunct Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations." Previously, he advised the U.S. State Department (under Secretaries Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton) on terrorism and counter-radicalization, the impact of connection technologies, and development of the "21st century statecraft agenda." This agenda, evidently, included orchestrating an Egyptian coup to rout a 30-year ally of the U.S. and Israel and enable the Muslim Brotherhood to gain a seat at the table in what is being hailed as a new Middle East "democracy." One is reminded of Psalm 2: "Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision" (Ps:2:4-5).]
AFP, 2/11/2011: Ahmadinejad Says "The Final Move Has Begun" [Excerpts]—President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said...that a new Middle East is being created...as he backed the Arab uprisings.
"We will soon see a new Middle East materialising without America and the Zionist regime and there will be no room for world arrogance (the West) in it."
In his fiery style, Ahmadinejad showed his messianic beliefs...saying the world was witnessing a revolution managed by Imam Mehdi, the 12th Shiite imam who disappeared as a five-year-old in the 10th century and who Shiites believe would return on the judgment day.
"The final move has begun. We are in the middle of a world revolution managed by this dear (12th Imam). A great awakening is unfolding. One can witness the hand of Imam in managing it," said Ahmadinejad.
Guardian, 2/22/2011: Iranian Warships Transit Suez [Excerpts]--Two Iranian warships have crossed the Suez canal en route to Syria in a move that Israel said it viewed with the "utmost gravity."
Last week, Israel's foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, described the Iranian move as a "provocation that proves that the self-confidence and impudence of the Iranians is growing from day to day....Regrettably the international community shows no willingness to deal with these repeated Iranian provocations."
[TBC: Concerns over Iran's year-long "training mission" include the potential supplying of weapons to Hezbollah.]
Foreign Policy Magazine, 2/17/2011: In sharp reversal, U.S. agrees to rebuke Israel in Security Council [Excerpts]—The U.S. informed Arab governments Tuesday that it will support a U.N. Security Council statement reaffirming that the 15-nation body "does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlement activity," a move aimed at avoiding the prospect of having to veto a stronger Palestinian resolution calling the settlements illegal.
In exchange for scuttling the Palestinian resolution, the United States would support the council statement, consider supporting a U.N. Security Council visit to the Middle East, the first since 1979, and commit to supporting strong language criticizing Israel's settlement policies in a future statement by the Middle East Quartet.