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Recovering Islam: The American Mainstream News Media & the Middle East (Part 1)

By Geoffrey Cook, TMO

Camp Meeker (Calif.)–March 1st–Your thinker is once again nestled amongst these wondrously soaring Redwoods near the wine country north of San Francisco on one of his twice yearly jaunts into this mysterious forest away from his resident across the bay from San Francisco to find an undisturbed time to write.

Your composer gathered the basis of this story last fall at UC Berkeley.  I intended to write up the comments made during the previous Autumn of Diane Winston, who is in full-time residence at the Annenberg School of Communication (probably the best think tank on journalism and the new media in the US) located on the campus of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

The hamlet of Camp Meeker resides on the summit of a now wintry hillock covered by magnificent and huge old-growth Redwood.  In the summer, it may be near a hundred degrees Celsius at the crest of the forest, but, at the bottom, a comfortable seventy or so.  Yet, in this wintry weather, the trees trap the rain’s moisture downward to the forested floor.  (This area is actually the beginning of the North American Northwest.) The high ensnared humidity brings back this old “warrior’s” throbbing aches from ancient lingering wounds added to an old man’s arthritis.

From where your reporter stands reporting, the atmosphere is more immediately pungent than previously, for across the street at the bottom of the valley below south of the Sonoma (County) village of Occidental — is the entrance to the infamous Bohemian Grove. 

Now, the Bohemian Grove, owned by San Francisco’s Bohemian Club, is a large rural encampment near the Russian River.  (Moscow, also, competed for the surrounding landscape of what is now California in competition with the British and Spanish during the Colonial period of the Eighteenth Century (C.E.), the Common Era.   Saint Petersburg (the Slavic Eurasian Empire’s) capital at the time, enfolded large envelopments of Muslim majority Eastern European and Central Asian provinces.  The southernmost American settlement, Fort Ross, of this Empire on the eastward (to them) the Artic Sea, their North American Imperium was in this same present-day political division as the (U.S.A.‘s) California State’s sub-division as present day Camp Meeker but only on the Sonoma beach.)  The urban Bohemian Club was established at the cusp of the late Nineteenth / early Twentieth Centuries.  After the great fire, which immediately followed the immense 1906 earthquake on the San Andreas fault; flattening not only San Francisco but, also, Palo Alto and Santa Rosa as well; destroying the original Club edifice; allowing the conservative members to become dominate of their Society.  From that time forward, no woman was to be allowed on any of their properties — not even worker-servants.  In truth, an “Old Boy’s Association!”  The Club was established for non-nefarious reasons.  The original driving force behind the founding of this institution was to provide a social space for those with a slightly Bohemian (creative) twinge, and the main force behind it was Jack London, a lesser but noted American regional author.      Why has your journalist spent almost a page and one half description to discuss the place of composition?  Well, over the preceding decades the Bohemian Club and Grove (one and the same association) have degenerated into the “home,” or at least its members’ “playground.”  Those “buddies” are referred to as the Trilateral “Commission,” a shadowy association that does and does not exist, but whose decisions — often based on personal relationships determine the shape of our world.

Unlike the more formal and high-profile Davos‘ invitees or the formal inter-governmental bodies of the G-8 and the G-20 or the super international economic institutions, the World Bank or the IMF (the International Monetary Fund).  The Tri-lateral “Commission” has no governmental or sub-governmental democratic controls or representation.  The decisions and deals made by these powerful men affect almost every man and woman and even nature herself, but they are governed by personal relationships of  influential males of regimes, militaries and the large commercial enterprises — not the peoples of this globe or their representatives. The informally made agreements at these Tri-lateral summer “encampments” (yes, it is like a “boys’” summer camp!) are made between the movers and shakers in the world, which include international governmental leaders that is inclusive of both Kings and elective leaders of the Islamic world, too.

(Incidentally, there are still remnants of the Society’s original charter still remaining here on the Pacific Coast.  Curiously, the Guild still has to include five professors from Berkeley and Stanford Universities each plus a predetermined number of artists and writers, but, for the most part, their “founding Fathers‘” principles and interests have been jettisoned.).

Your researcher has taken such a large diversionary swathe from his main subject of the current upheavals within the Arab nationalities and the reporting of them in the American press. Since shadowy groups like the Tri-lateral Commission, who, in their secretive social comfortable conspiratorial meeting place(s) hereabouts, thwarts the lives, struggling, suffering and ambitions of the Arabic-speaking populations within North African and the Middle East from such a far distance as the North of California.

This past weekend, February twenty-fifth through the twenty-seventh, Libya is fully inside civil war.  As mercenaries enter Tripoli recruited outside the Republic from other African lands, another key city falls in the east of their desert terrain.  While the “Imperial” Western Metropoles (Centers) are preparing a “no fly zone” over Tripoli’s hinterlands.  The United States is positioning their piloted air weapons stationed in Italy to enforce such a no fly zone over Libya’s Coast and its inhospitable interior to prevent what is being described as a genocide by preventing the Colonel’s air forces from bombing their own citizens.  Both North African countries (Egypt) and Southern European Nations (especially Italy) are battling a truly overwhelmingly developing humanitarian immigration crisis. 

Your assessor urges all Islamic charities to make up contingency plans to aid the Libyans caught in the crosshairs of the rebellion if they have not already done so!  Demonstrations have recommenced in Tunisia, too, on February 26th where the current upheavals in the Maghreb began.  The territory of Oman has begun recently (the twenty-seventh) to become the newest nation (so far) to undergo civil political challenges as the sitting King of Saudi Arabia offered reforms the previous week from the date of this article to assuage complaints of their quickly expanding youthful population in that oil-rich Kingdom.    The monarch, who is in his eighties, is attempting to better “tweak” the benefits amongst his subjects by an enhanced distribution of the wealth of this “crude“-wealthy and culturally rich wasteland.  Not only is it already troublesome over the Arab geography, but yesterday (Feb. 28th) the Farsi (Persian) government in Tehran arrested two well-known dissidents.  With conservative members of their Parliament calling for the death penalty for the leaders of those who have demonstrated against Tehran, with the Medes wretched record for the second highest number of executions within the orb over each of the last several years, this does not forebode well for domestic peace over the Islamic Republic of Iran. Staff fellows — experts on sub-Sahara Africa — domiciled within the District of Columbia’s think tanks — are voicing fears that similar protests and disruptions will grow south soon.  Much of sub-Sahara Africa is Muslim, too, and, succinctly, these upheavals will be Islamic ones, also! While the American Metropolis (the Center of “Imperial” power), is profoundly terrified of a lethal repeat of a 1973-like denial of energy to run the District of Columbia’s “provinces,” and to block a reasonably hasty end of the recession in North America and elsewhere in the developed world.  The danger of an out of control disruption in the mineral supplies from the Islamic lands to the developed would guarantee the “double-dip” (economic) re-recession.

Counting the length in your author’s second draft, he discovered that he was in excess of 2,000 words.  Therefore, Part II of this personal essay on the present troubles will appear in the future issue.


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