Muammar Ghaddafi Is Dead (Killed)! Reply

 

Dead Ghaddafi Video Image

 

Watch the videos also

http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/10664524-new-images-of-gaddafi-before-his-death

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/20/muammar-gaddafi-dead-photos_n_1022779.html 

  Al JAZEERA TV NEWS

http://english.aljazeera.net/news/africa/2011/10/20111020171225339666.html

 Al JAZEERA TV NEWS

While reports surrounding the circumstances ofMuammar Gaddafi;s death remain murky, amateur footage combined with eyewitness accounts tell a dramatic story of the toppled leader’s last stand.

Shortly before dawn prayers on Thursday, Gaddafi surrounded by a few dozen loyal bodyguards and accompanied by Abu Bakr Younis Jabr, the head of his now defeated army, broke out of Sirte where his loyalists had been embroiled in fierce gun battles with NTC fighters for two months.

 

Gaddafi headed west in an armed convoy of 15 trucks, but did not get far. NATO said that one of its aircraft struck the convoy near Sirte at about 8:30 am on Thursday.

Gerard Longuet, French defence minister, later confirmed that the attack – which destroyed all 15 trucks and killed 50 of Gaddafi’s men – was executed by the French air force.

However, Gaddafi himself and a handful of his men escaped death and appear to have run through a strand of trees towards the main road and hid in two drainage pipes.

Gaddafi’s capture

Gaddafi and his men attempted to hide from a unit of NTC fighters who had pursued the convoy, but were quickly located.

“At first we fired at them with anti-aircraft guns, but it was no use,” Salem Bakeer, a member of the NTC fighters’ unit, said. “Then we went in on foot.

“One of Gaddafi’s men came out waving his rifle in the air and shouting surrender, but as soon as he saw my face he started shooting at me,” he told Reuters news agency.

“Then I think Gaddafi must have told them to stop. ‘My master is here, my master is here’, he said, ‘Muammar Gaddafi is here and he is wounded’,” Bakeer said.

“We went in and brought Gaddafi out. He was saying ‘What’s wrong? What’s wrong? What’s going on?’. Then we took him and put him in the car,” Bakeer said.

At the time of capture, Gaddafi was already wounded with gunshots to his leg and to his back, Bakeer said.

Other government fighters who said that they took part in Gaddafi’s capture, separately confirmed Bakeer’s version of events, though one said the man who ruled Libya for 42 years was shot and wounded at the last minute by one of his own men.

“One of Muammar Gaddafi’s guards shot him in the chest,” Omran Jouma Shawan said.

Amateur footage uploaded on YouTube seemed to corroborate claims that Gaddafi was captured alive.

In the video, a bloodied and dazed Gaddafi can be seen being propped up by two NTC fighters, as others grab at him and cheer “God is Great!”.

The leader’s bodyguards were all killed.

Gaddafi dies

After his capture, Gaddafi was placed in an ambulance bound for the city of Misrata. Witnesses say that he succumbed to his wounds while on the road.

However, Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril told a news conference on Thursday that Gaddafi was not fatally wounded when placed in the ambulance, but killed when crossfire broke out in mid transport.

“Gaddafi was taken out of a sewage pipe … he didn’t show any resistance. When we started moving him he was hit by a bullet in his right arm and when they put him in a truck he did not have any other injuries’,” Jibril said.

“When the car was moving it was caught in crossfire between the revolutionaries and Gaddafi forces in which he was hit by a bullet in the head.

“The forensic doctor could not tell if it came from the revolutionaries or from Gaddafi’s forces.”

Jibril said Gaddafi died a few minutes before reaching a hospital.

While it is not clear what happened afterwards, another amateur video, presumably shot by an NTC fighter, shows a lifeless Gaddafi being dragged on the floor and sprawled out for a cheering crowd of fighters to see.

Gaddafi’s body was later loaded into a truck and taken to an undisclosed location.

“Gaddafi’s body is with our unit in a car and we are taking the body to a secret place for security reasons,” Mohamed Abdel Kafi, a NTC official in the city of Misrata said.

The final irony of Gaddafi’s life, which was strewn with eccentric and often anecdotes, was not lost on the victorious fighters, who Gaddafi had often decried as “rats”.

“He called us rats, but look where we found him,” Ahmed al-Sahati, a 27-year-old fighter, standing next to a drainage pipe where the former leader was found, said.

 

Source:

Al Jazeera and agencies

 And Compare To When He Was A Hero – A Great Lesson Here For All!

The Aged Ghaddafi

The Message – Stay with your people – Friends Outside are all temporary and artificial!!

Disappointing Results For Women! 4

 
 
 
Disappointing result for women
 
Saleh Al Shaibany
Mon Oct 17 2011 08:33:40 GMT+0400 (Arabian Standard Time) Oman Time
 
MUSCAT:Oman today celebrates the Woman’s Day, which coincides with a major disappointment for the 77 women candidates, from which only one emerged victorious, in an election dominated by men voting within their own tribes.Nuamah bint Jamayel bin Farhan bin Mubarak Al Busaidiyah, a school teacher from Seeb, is the only female candidate to win a seat in the 84-member Majlis Al Shura assembly and the first one to be elected since 2004. No woman is serving in the outgoing council.A woman candidate at Muscat came close – with over 2,000 votes – as a runner up but failed to secure the first spot.“It would have been great to celebrate Omani Woman’s Day with four or five women elected. I really thought this was going to be a historical election in terms of women, but sadly it was not,”
Fahima Al Rawahi, a school teacher at Al Azaiba, told Times of Oman.Not more than two women have been elected at any Majlis Al Shura Council since voting started in 1991. Other women too were disappointed, blaming men for voting for their tribal members.

“Many people across the country say that they saw groups of tribes of candidates in their home towns voting for their men. Most of these candidates who have been elected are not qualified to serve but they are in there because they belong to large tribes,” Fadhila Al Hosni, a receptionist at the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, said.

The Ministry of Social Development marks Omani Woman’s Day today with an event at the Ministry of Education’s theatre at Wattayah.
Leading corporate houses in the country are also marking the day with celebrations and colorful events.

His Highness Sayyid Shihab bin Tariq Al Said, personal adviser of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said, said that women deserved to take part in the democratic aspirations of Oman and without their participation, the nation would not be complete.

“Women are our partners in progress and their role in the Majlis Al Shura is much needed. They are as much educated and dedicated as men and we need them to make important decisions alongside men,” Sayyid Shihab said.

AND MUSCAT DAILY SAME DAY…

It’s a victory for Oman’s women,

says Naama

Mohamed Al Balushi

17/10/2011 10:02 am

Naama Jameel Farhan al Busaidi, the only woman candidate to win in the Majlis A’Shura polls, has dedicated her victory to all women in Oman. Naama won from Seeb by securing 626 votes in the elections held on Saturday.

“With this victory, all the women in the sultanate have won,” Naama, an activities specialist at the Mabela A’Shamaliya School, told Muscat Daily. “I am happy for every Omani woman, who will now be represented in the Shura Council. I won because people, especially women, trusted me and showed their faith in me.”

Naama said that she has been working in the education sector for 23 years, and added that she plans to fulfill the wishes of the residents of Seeb.

Some of the residents in the area expressed happiness at having elected the only woman in the Majlis A’Shura. “I have known her for many years, and she deserves this victory,” said Khalfan al Amri from Mabela. “She is very popular in the area as a good teacher.”

“It is great to see a woman win a seat,” said Ghahim al Amri, another resident of the area. “It is a big achievement that she is the only woman to have won from the 77 who contested across Oman.”

 My Comments

The same story – or The story of half-empty glass and half-full glass – you never win!

Today is Women’s Day Celebrations!

It is important that women had participated – winning or not winning! They need to be better organised next time. And that is where modernity clashes with traditions – because in great parts of society the women have to follow what their men say – still is a great start!

By Majid Al Suleimany

P.S. Women want equal rights? Welcome to Equal Rights – and no pun intended! I am a father of 3 daughters – and 1 son!

Nobody cares what I say here – but it would not be a bad idea if the three women with the highest number of votes (or percentages) were to be nominated to represent Omani Women in Majlis Ash’hura!

Okay you will say what about the men who did not win with equal votes and percentages? Are you not creating a precedent here. I do not know – maybe you have a point too!

Take Care!

 

The Elections Remembrances! Reply

Dear All & After Compliments;

Yesterday Saturday October 15th 2011 were elections for The Consultative Assembly in Oman or better known as Majlis Ash’shura with as many as 1133 candidates competing for the 84 seats representing 61 Wilayats (Provinces) in Oman. 77 women contested in the elections – and being the 7th elections so far in the Sultanate. Registerd voters are about 518,000 in 105 Polling Stations throughout the Nation.

It reminded me of the time when still in Tanzania in the early 1970s when our Higher Secondary School students were sent to assist at the Polling Stations. We were required to report like what we have in Oman as The Walis – or The Area Commissioners AC(from ex Colonial Times of District Commissioners – or more famous as The DCs!).

The shock of my life as a teenager is being called in front of the AC – an indigeneous National – and he telling me – “I have appointed you Mr. Nasser (that is what they used to call me as a term of respect!) as The Presiding Official at this centre of Ilala – one of the big districts in the city of Dar es Salaam – the capital!

Please keep in mind that I was of Arab Origin (Omani born parents and grandparents!) and this was AFTER the assasination of their Zanzibar Island President Abeid Amani Karume. I was at first thinking to decline when he called the Electoral Officials to introduce me to my new role. My Headmaster – also an African Indigeneous – was smiling broadly and congratulating me on the trust, faith and confidence being given to me – and what being secular is allabout!

Frankly, I was really scared, timid and worried – first being a student and second on my ethnicity and origins. He then called the Presiding Police Official Commander – and he introduced me to the Other Police and Electoral Officials.

My authority was to decide on complex issues and ambiguities – and to supervise all the elections procedures and administrative cum management. That includes okaying or not okaying candidates to be allowed to vote who came with no sufficient documents to prove citizenship – and for those coming from other regions of the country to be allowed to vote here. I had suddenly power to control, monitor abnd dominate my fellow school mates – and the other officials.

Some of them were against me being in the limelight – and had even said by the side in Swahili – Anaye Kunyima Mbaazi Anakupunguziyaa Mashuuzi! Literally and more polite meaning – The one who denies you (kidney) beans just reduces the gas for you in return (advantage!)…

As I entered and left I was being saluted – and I felt so embarrassed because I did not know then how to salute back! My job also included sealing and signing the electoral boxes – and transporting them under my supervision to the AC Office – and where The Central Committee Electoral Officials went.

They all thanked me for the good works done – and I had never felt so elated and proud for this trust and confidence to me – and yesterday it all came back in thoughts and feelings.

Take Care!

By Majid Al Suleimany ,,,

Realities of Life! – By Majid Al Suleimany. 3

Facing Realities In Life!

Before I start, you will forgive me in my usual style of quoting my own examples – or near cases – because first of all there is no better examples and comparisons to give – and more importantly you also do escape a lot of things  that Writers like us nowadays of have to be careful for – and some from least expected quarters!

Yesterday night a good fiend of mine an ex work peer told me the sad news that he was going abroad for medical treatment – because his cancer case had returned – and he thought he had beaten it after being treated first abroad a few years back. He said to me – forgive me if I have done anything against you – and in case I do not return!

I also want to quote this story to you as an opener.

1          The Post Office Man

There was a man who worked for the Post Office whose job it was to process all the mail that had illegible addresses. One day, a letter came addressed in a shaky handwriting to God. He thought he should open it to see what it was about.

The letter read:

Dear God,

I am an 83 year old widow, living on a very small pension. Yesterday someone stole my purse. It had $100.00 in it, which was all the money I had until my next pension check. Next Sunday is Christmas and I had invited two of my friends over for dinner.

Without that money, I have nothing to buy food with. I have no family to turn to and you are my only hope. Can you please help me?

Sincerely,

Edna

The postal worker was touched. He showed the letter to all the other workers. Each one dug into his or her wallet and ca! m e up with a few dollars. By the time he made the rounds, he had collected $96, which they put into an envelope and sent to the woman. The rest of the day, all the workers felt a warm glow thinking of Edna and the dinner she would be able to share with her friends.

Christmas came and went. A few days later, another letter came from the old lady to God. All the workers gathered around while the letter was opened.

It read:

Dear God,

How can I ever thank you enough for what you did for me? Because of your gift of love, I was able to fix a glorious dinner for my friends. We had a very nice day and I told my friends of your wonderful gift. By the way, there was $4.00 missing. I think it must have been those thieving bastards at the Post Office.

2          Et tu, Brute (And you too, Brutus) : Origin and Meaning

What does Et tu Brute mean?

These words are said to have been Julius Caesars last words after being assassinated on the Ides of March

This by a group of  Senators, including Marcus Brutus, someone he had considered a close friend.

A number of translations exist:-

“And you, Brutus?”

“You too, Brutus?”

“Even you Brutus?”

“And you, (too) Brutus?”

Today, this quotation is mostly used to refer to an act of ultimate betrayal, usually from a trusted person.

The source of this quote appears to be from William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar: –

“Caesar: Doth not Brutus bootless kneel?

Casca: Speak, hands, for me! (They stab Caesar.)

Caesar: Et tu, Brute? Then fall, Caesar! (Dies.)

Cinna: Liberty! Freedom! Tyranny is dead!”

3          The Story of The Scorpion and The Frog

(From The Arab Short Stories and Tales – also from My Book Between Us Only!).

Have you heard this story?

A scorpion saw a frog.  So he told the frog – I have my relative who is sick on the other side of the river.  I want to go to visit him.  Can you carry me across?

The frog said – do you think I was born yesterday?  If I do that you will sting me on my back and I shall then die.  The scorpion said – How can I do that?  Did I not just now request you to carry me  across?  Do you take to be crazy or stupid?   The frog was convinced.  So it said to the scorpion – okay jump on my back!

As they were crossing the river, the scorpion said – see, you did not trust me – now do you believe me?  Did I sting you?  No – said the frog – I am sorry.  Ten minutes later half-way the river – the scorpion stung the frog.

‘Whatever are  you doing?  Do you know what you have just done?  I shall now die – and you will drown too.  Yes – replied the scorpion – I know!

But it is my nature – I just cannot change.

4          Human Species are The Worst Traitors.

It is acknowledged that Human beings are the worst in deception and in lying. The worst that will turn on their own. Next I am told are the monkeys (chimpanzees) as most near men – though other animals have been known to do it – like driving away the Old Lion King by younger lions to take over the colony!

Thus the old lion joke – I am too old to chase any preys now, I just sit under the tree and wait for leftovers – or weak animals that will stray to my path.

5           Our Religious Book (The Sunnah andThe Hadith) are Full of stories of deception and traitorship – and done against even our Great Prophets of God (Peace Be Upon Them)

6          Ghandi said it too!

You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean – if a few drops of the ocean are dirty – the ocean does not become dirty!

Also – I  claim to be a simple individual liable to err like any other fellow mortal. I own, however, that I have humility enough to confess my errors and retrace my steps ..Mahatma Ghandi.

You simply cannot change human nature!

The Realities of Life!

Did you know that life is a continuous Learner to us of all?. Sometimes one may tend to think that in death then that is the end of learning as it is, but is it really so? For us Believers when we do die (God Give us all long life and health – Amin!), we are made to lie on our right side facing Mecca. Now how many of us sleep that way in our daily lives? I do not know about you, but I surely do not do it that way!

I know you are asking yourself where is this leading to, after reading the topic? Well, Dear Reader, just give me some more space to explain myself, or those who may feel adversarial may comment – give him enough rope to hang himself!

I have never kidded myself that I have all friends out there, so I am practical and realistic too. There is this famous expression the  East Africans like to quote – That which bites your skin comes from the  same fabric that is being worn by you. Or as a relative likes to  satirically likes to comment – ‘Between Us Only’ whenever he has something (stupid!)  to say, especially when I am around to hear it! But then life will not be  complete and beautiful without all these kinds of peoples amongst our midst to  make our day more beautiful and make life worth living for!

They say in life there are two kinds of peoples. You  either fit in one or the other – you cannot sit on the fence and pretend you  belong to neither. As I had said in this column before, (Lady I think?)  Margaret Thatcher had said – Those who sit on the fence get pelted by  both sides – or words to that effect.

My Dear Reader, let me put it this way. You are very  thirsty. You go to an Office, and they are still after your business hoping  that you will still buy from them, then they ask you – What are you having? (Notice that as soon as you have bought the offers are not there anymore, or  have dwindled in frequencies?). Actually the sentence itself is a misnomer –  because it should mean nothing, and English is a strange language. So automatically  or by default you answer back – Can I have a glass of water please? The  water is delivered to you. You look at the glass, it is not full – so what is
your reaction? Either (you may think it all inside or even ask it loud too):-

(a)  The glass is half empty – what?

(b)  The glass is half full – thank you anyway!

Now, Dear Reader, which one are you?

That is the beauty of life, or the twists, turns and  ironies of life.

The same picture can be seen differently by different  peoples. Have you had these tests? They show you a picture and ask you what you  see? Depending on your sight and view of life, you either see a very pretty  young beautiful girl, or a very ugly old lady! They show you another picture  and ask you what you see now? And you either see a smiling cheerful man, or a  very sad looking man. I was once very embarrassed when I was asked to tell what  I saw, and there was a gasp in the class as to what my inclinations were, but I  will not bore you with details and keep the secret with me till I die anyway.  Point taken that from that date onwards I had never volunteered a quick answer  till others had their say first!

Anyway, coming back to the issue of the water in the  glass! Majority of peoples would normally say Thank you for the half full of  water glass. If they needed more water, they may well ask – can I have  another glass please?  These are the  positive out looking peoples, appreciative of kindness and some bread crumbs  thrown to their way, but there will be still some who will sarcastically remark  – how much did you pay for the water? Why are you giving mean a half empty  glass of water?

These are the kinds of peoples that are never appreciative  of kind gestures, kindness, good or mercy of any kind done to them. They are  always mean, ghastly dastardly cruel and always finding faults to a tune. Even  if others do not see it, for sure for them they will be able to! Whatever you  do for or to them is not enough – they never appreciate anything and are always  complaining and finding fault. Apportioning blame. No problem to make you the  ‘fall guy’ or the ‘scape goat’ and cause of all their misfortunes and troubles!  If you have a parent or boss of this kind, woe unto you Dear Friend!

They may remind you of incidences long past and best  left forgotten – but they will still do it. If you have wronged them, even  unintentionally and inadvertently, they will never let it go and never forgive  you. For the rest of their lives they will hound and pursue you, the slightest  mistake you make – they will jump on you with guns blazing. They never forgive  and forget, even if the shrewder ones may pretend to be forgiving and  forgetting, but it is still in the back of their minds.

These are very dangerous peoples, and they can easily  without any remorse or conscience destroy your life, career and future – and  kill and character assassinate you too – and put you in untold miseries,  hardships and difficulties.

These are peoples best to avoid and never annoy  and confronteven if you maybe right. They will make vicious  campaigns against you and try to harm and destroy you. It gives them great  sadistic immense great pleasure and happiness when they have succeeded in doing  so!

That is life for you, and the meaning of life – its  ups and downs.

Long time back when I was a kid there was this old  African lady, whom I respected and esteemed. I always greeted her nicely  whenever I had met her. She was staying by herself all alone, abandoned by her  family. I do not know if she was the lady who had complained in the past to her  relatives of being given ‘half empty glass of water’,

But with me she was always kind and treated me like her grandson. So this lady told me one day  – grandson, do you like chicken? I was wondering what to reply thinking  maybe she wanted to cook one for me? Seeing me surprised, she went on – If  you follow a chicken and see what it eats, you will never eat a chicken again  in your life, even if you like chicken! The message was clear – it is best  not to delve and look into details into things, and best leave some things best  as they are! All Alone!

An old fisherman friend to the family said of the same things – if you follow a crab or lobster – it is the same story!

My First  Column Article.

With my first article titled “More  Dangerous and Troubled Waters Ahead” that first appeared in this column on 23rd April 2003 (after the Iraq invasion)  – I had said – Quote – Now those of you  who know me well would recall that I am not by profession or even by design a  military analyst or military expert, or even a political expert one at that
unquote.

However, I had warned of the dangerous spiraling of events into more  dangers, troubles, and malaise and decadence post-Iraq invasion. So far what I  had said there and predicted has come to pass. Than how come it that this ‘own  true son of the land’ is still unemployed and gone unnoticed, I ask you?

In my jobs life, I have always believed  in respectable esteeming treatment of my Staff. My door has always been open to  them. Some even call me at home, raising ‘jealousy levels’ at home when it is  the ladies who will call. I listen to my Staff; I hear them too (didn’t you  know there is a difference between the two?). The Staff who stands up to me is  never judged as a ‘Personal danger or threat’ – I respect that. I hate  ‘Yes-Sir’ Staff. I also hate ‘Tell-Tales’ Staff in trying to please me.

You can  ask any of my Staff who worked with me, I am sure they will affirm to what I am  saying here. When I worked for one small firm, I had arranged for a  welcome-party-after-delivery-thing for one of my lady Staff.

The day I left the  place, she cried. This had never happened in that company’s plus twenty years  existence. I can never forget you – and now you are going…

When I had any issue with a Staff, I believed in calling in the  person and trash out the issue vis-à-vis (face to face), and no other way. The  last thing I would do is write that Staff an Official letter, and then discuss  with him. I would discuss with the Staff, and then put it in writing as ‘A  Gentleman’s Agreement’ of where we had reached! As a matter of record and for  future reference only, and for nothing else! Not for punishment; nor for  vengeance!

You know in all my life, I have been a  ‘Pusher’. I always and firmly believe in ‘Live and Let Live’. I am  always a great believer and always after a ‘win-win thing’ (remember my  last 2 weeks’ back article? Win Some; Lose Some!).

I stand my grounds and  issues. I let no one scare me to make me change what I strongly believe in! Yet  if I make a mistake, I am not stubborn – I shall accept it and apologise!

Do you know what people really want? You turn the other cheek when they slap you – or poke fingers in your eyes – you do not raise your hand to protect yourself – even if they wiull take the eyes out!

Do not squarm – or complain! Who are you to have such audacity? It is this reason why everything is burning around us now!

Making Employees always happy was all I had wanted!

Frankly and  honestly, I am always against unfairness and  injustice, favouritism and unethical unprofessional behaviour. If some peoples think that is aggressiveness, then let them continue  to think so!. In the Management classes, I was always classified by the Lecturers ‘As the ‘Leader who cares, feels and stands with his Staff. 

Polite, kind and decent and tactful too’ Leadership style!. Besides one  should not judge a person by what others paint him from what he is not really  (by the cover of the book). Don’t you agree?

Thanks to the MBA course and  post-my company (after early retirement) experiences, I have now learnt  that the best way to transform changes and systems are from within, rather than  confront from outside. I am fully aware that some companies tend to prefer softer approach.

Criticisms can be healthy when only considered positively. In  life they say – You can never know how far out you can go, until you have  tried. Or birds can fly because they know they can! Did you hear about Murphy’s Law? That  things will only get worse, before they can get any better!

The  Africans have this * expression – sometimes just a kind word or compliment can  do wonders (* you can even draw that snake out of a rock, praise its  beautiful eyes, and ask ‘just to see it’). I think this is the reason that many  have misunderstood and misjudged me in my last jobs.

It is not that I do not  say NO too like the others – I too do it and am a Team Player – but it is the  question of how I say it – with care and feelings touch, and also to explain
why too!

I  never broke any rules or regulations, possibly bend them a bit in really acute  and taxing situations – letting humanity set in, with no distinction in any  way!

When  the chips are down and things are at its lowest ebb – it is not easy to face  someone with your problem, and that needs intervention, help and assistance.  You have to swallow your pride, esteem and honour.

Not for yourself, but for  those who depend on you to look after them! The Swahilis call it ‘Kuchonga  Uso’ which literally means ‘to carve up one’s face’ – that is how hard and difficult  it is to some – but than what other alternatives do they have?

Sometinmes the people that can hurt and pain you the most are those supposed to be close and near you – like your wife, family and children – friends and relatives – when they become (unexpectedly?) mean, selfish, self-centred and even evil against you! So what do you do? Sulk in – and go in deep distress and self destruction – or hold up your head high?

Eve did it to Adam – so what else is new?

Actually  I am indebted to the person who really ‘SAVED’ me is this esteemed paper –  offered me a Free Lance Column Writer job! And you know what – they say in the  Management spheres, if they can pay you whilst still doing your hobby and  interests, you have made it!

Certainly I do not feel so. Though the money is  not that much and always delayed, but at least I get paid for a hobby and interest in writing per  se! Besides, my salary (pension) just evaporates into the Bank’s Accounts as  soon as they receive it from that old good company of mine!

What else can I do,  I ask you? It is as if I am not getting any pension after working for more than  25 years of dedicated and loyal services to The Company – and to The Nation.

Ironically, sadly and tragically the same Bank that takes away all a Pensioner’s salary – is the same bank introducing a Pension Savings Scheme – but yet in an Arab and Muslim country – the same bank is ‘screwing up’ Pensioners by taking all a Pensioner (mine!) salary. The lessons of Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Syria is easily and conveniently forgotten – and all too soon too!

How despicable and pathetic one can get?

In my life, I have helped so many others in my prime before, but this is now all easily and  conveniently forgotten now! No one remembers, or wants to! I have personal  references in good men CEOs who will stand by me, because they have seen ‘The  real me’ and I in action too. One has become even a very close personal friend  too. When he says – I wish I had met you long time back, but I have still  time to change my Management styles. Surely that must mean something?

I had great opportunities to ‘get quick  rich thing’ – but in all my life I have NEVER taken anything that did  not belong to me. Nor do I intend to start now at this age either! Not everyone  can be an accursed and bad peoples.

Some of us are quite different.  Born different and in outlook, perspectives and in behaviours.

Being at the top does not mean being  always unscrupulous, evil, shrewd, mean, bad and ugly!

Or being shunned and  cursed at!

So next time you feel like being judgemental, criticizing and to be opinionated  – think of what I have just said!

E-Mails In Hindsight.

It is immaterial and of no consequence of the fact that I had already  opted out from a sinking ship by going for an Early Enhanced (Voluntary)  Retirement. It is immaterial of the fact that my pension should have taken care  of me and my family for that matter had I the smartness, foresight, vision and  brains not to try to be an entrepreneur and get myself involved into such  business at late stage of my life, into a Consultancy business of Human  Resources Development that was supposed to take off naturedly as being the talk  and craze in town to encourage development and entrepreneurship – especially  this sector – but instead ended with a big thud and crash.

It is immaterial and of no  consequence that the ‘big attractive contract’ that my Consultancy was bidding  for and had won would cause the fall and demise of the company for a lower  bidding, though successful to get it though. Even though they had promised us  ‘Take this now, we will give you more in the future’ – but none came!

It is immaterial and of no consequence also of the fact that the  International Consultant with us were paid three times (if not more) to the  same job scope and aspects that we too as a local fully Omani owned Consultancy  were to do – and yet for a large National Company too.

It is immaterial and of no consequences now either that at the interviews  there were younger Omani Candidates (some of them educationally even higher  educated than me.

But with little or minimal work experiences and exposures –  25 years in that big oil company in all Human Resources aspects and on top of 6  years as a HR Expert and Consultant. And they were ‘surprised’ to see ‘Uncle’  in the competition too!

Immaterial and of no consequence that too that there were Expatriates who  were retired and older than me too in the same place – but of course being from  different ethnic backgrounds (overseas) were opened doors to come in!

Whilst  for me the citizen of the land the doors were closed in front of my face –  including windows too that were barred shut from inside.

Immaterial too and of no consequence whatsoever that jobs supposed to be  reserved for the likes of us Nationals of the land, were given instead to  Expatriates based on personality basis (whom you know!), and that too  International Companies supposed to be of high repute and fame and their  Corporate and Social culture, values and missions cum vision to develop and  encourage local available talents, experts and competences.

Finally, it is immaterial and of no consequence either when ‘some of  those’ doing these jobs are not even experienced and professional peoples in  this line of business at all, but their being pretty things and of different  ethnicity (or other attractions) allows them in?

What do you do? Complain and write in your book and column? Nobody hears  or listens to you anymore now. Yet they brand you a colour you do not have nor  ever aim to have in your life. They stereotype you. Prototype you.

You are  trouble. Your name is not glory but just headache and trouble. You are to be  avoided, ignored and to be discarded.

Even from the filthy rich who had made it in life, from humble poor  levels and beginnings that you were in together, and shared the same corridors  in the Offices before at one time. From the big profile peoples whom you had  looked after and handled their cases more personally than official requirements  when they were just students with many sick and other family situation.

Would they remember you? Bet your life they have conveniently forgotten,  and just do not want anything coming from you. Just nothing!

What The Bosses Had  Said – Saying Goodbyes…

1          Majid is a very caring, kind and  spiritual person – a shame and pity that many do not give him the time and the
efforts to understand him better – American CEO

2          His coming here was like A Fresh Blow  of Wind – now that he has gone the air is more stale than ever before!” – British  GM

3          Some time back I met this old European  boss of mine who came to visit Oman.  He  is now working for a very powerful conglomerate and in a very high  position.  He nearly made me cry when he  said to me – I knew M the day I had left that you will not go far in your  career because of what you are as a person and in outlook.

But  I still have the highest  respects, esteem and like for you, in actual case the few I had always  remembered.  Because you are a real  professional ethical (and courageous) person who had the courage (audacity?) to  stand up to me and tell me what I was doing then was actually wrong – not like  the others who pretended to go along with me, but behind my back were saying  something different to those they ‘really trusted and had confidence with’.

4          I have a good boss friend of  mine.  He tells me this point blank ‘of  what is wrong with you’.

Stop caring and  feeling – it just does not pay (or at least increase your salary!).  Be rough – hit your heart strongly and just  say – I just do not care or feel anymore.  You said your bit – nobody cared to hear or listen, so move along.  Just take care of yourself and your direct  family members only.  The others and rest  are not important.

5          I had an expatriate  CEO once – he told me what? You are giving me just your hand to say goodbye? I cannot have that. Come here! And the poor man hugged me kissing me on both  cheeks. That I had to bend my face (he being short!) is another issue, and his  hands could not get around me (remember that diet!).

The same had happened to  me with a British lady boss, who I had thought not cared but she did the same wiping  her face. I gave her my handkerchief – it was clean anyway! She tells me she  still has it – for remembrance sake (do not worry, madam does not read my  articles!).

6          This  Indian Peer Manager says to me – Are you really leaving us now? I cannot  believe it! But I can appreciate your position – even I am looking for a  position outside – have not got it yet! But I will leave – as soon as I get a  good offer elsewhere (he left later on!).

He caught my hand  and kissed it in goodbye. I had never been so embarrassed in my life before –  till then!

7          Always  it had been those in the lower rungs that cared more as I left. It was the  Indian Tea Maker in Abu Dhabi – the old man cried! Who is going to say Thank  You now to me (as he served me tea – a thing that really upset my Emirati  National Boss. Do you want me to say thank you, every time you did something  for me? What is wrong with you – he screamed to me!

8          If the machines closed down, it triggered an Emergency code to The  USA CEO in Dubai. So he called The Production Manager – what is going on? He  gets the reply – all the Staff have switched off the machines – they are saying  Goodbyes to Majid – and escorting him to the gate! Some are visibly upset and  angry – some are sad! That includes the Non Omani Staff too. Yet I had come in  7 months back to take over The Human Resources Manager job from an Indian peer  – who had been in the position for the last 12 years – till the position was  Omanised by me.

One of the Indian  Technicians pleads – Why sir? Who will look after us now?

9    I always believe this. If there is unfairness and injustice – Allah God takes away blessings from anything. It can perhaps explain all the chaos and commotions – and why everything is burning now around us! And the reduced everyday incomes, profits and sustainibilities – and the increased chaos, confusions and corruptions – and so much sadness and unhappiness!

Allah God Protect and Preserve us all from His Anger and Fury – Amin Amen!

By Majid Al Suleimany

How To Get My Books In Oman! Reply

WHSmith at The Wave Bookshop and Muscat Airport Stall

Introduction To The Author.

Majid Al Suleimany is an Author. Majid is also a columnist for The Oman Daily Observer. He is a management and human resources expert, consultant, and professional. Married with four children, retired – he lives in Oman.

He was congratulated for his first article, My Most Vivid Dream, by The Aga Khan in 1960s in Tanzania. He wrote for Petroleum Development Oman – PDO Al Fahal Magazine. Two articles, A New Outlook On Omanisation and Stray Thoughts On Traffic, were reproduced by The Times of Oman, where he used to be a contributor.

He returned to The Oman Daily Observer as a weekly columnist writing Between Us Only! and At My Workplace! He is also a Columnist with KOM – Knowledge Oman – Society Speaks! He is now writing a book titled Sinking Deeper – No Money? No Honey!

Books Published (Five)

• February 2005 Between Us Only! – sponsored by MB and PetroGas, published by Al Nahda Printing Press in Oman.

• November 2008 The Sequel – Between Us Only! – published by Trafford in Canada.

• January 2009 Short Takes – Between Us Only! – published by BookSurge in the United States.

• May 2009 Psychology of Arab Management Thinking – Context and Perspectives – Arabian Management Series, published by Trafford in Canada.

• February 2010 A Cry For Help! – Context and Perspectives – Arabian Management Series, published by Trafford in Canada and the United States. Latest book on Arab Management.

 • Books sold in Oman in WHSmith and Family bookshops – see www.majidbooks.com  on how to order the books.

See Images Above.

End of the Road – A Poem by Mustafa Mohamed Said (PDO Retiree). 1

                    

    Mustafa

End of the Road

 

كأني بكَ تنحطّ                  الى  اللحْدِ  و  تنْغطّ            

                                                            و
قد أسلمَك الرّهطْ             الى  أضيَقَ  منْ
سمّ                                                                                   هُناك الجسمُ
ممدودْ            ليستأكِلَهُ       الدّودْ

الى أن ينخَرَ العودْ             ويُمسي العظمُ قد رمّ


(المقامات الحريري)

 

“Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small  ones and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task  go to sleep in peace……..GOD IS AWAKE”   — Victor Hugo

 From times immemorial, ancient scripts, rock paintings,

drawings etched on cave walls and so on, all depicted that

Men was worshiping some deity or another. The pharaohs

of Egypt had their Ra, the Hindus their Lord Krishna;

while the Greeks and Romans had their Zeus and Jupiter,

ruling supreme, supported by a host of lesser ranked gods. 

A host of other pagan religions flourished; the fire and sun 

worshipers, Idolaters, etc… 

 Somewhere in Men’s simple brain a genetic knowledge

 probably informed him that there were powers or a power to

whose will he should  bend and turn to in time of trouble.  

 Then came the religions of the “heavens” ; Judaism followed

by Christianity ending with Islam, all the three firmly believing

in the oneness of God.

 Most people believe in life after death, some believing in the

reincarnation of the human soul but a very tiny few believe

in neither.  Let me quote some lines from

“The Garden of Proserpine” by Swinburne.

 

“From too much love of living,

From hope and fear set free,

We thank with brief thanksgiving

Whatever gods maybe;

            That no life lives for ever;

            That dead men rise up never,

            That even the weariest river

Winds somewhere safe to sea.”

 

But Men sooner or later realizes he has a bigger stake to lose.

While young and powerful he arrogantly mocks at what others

believe in.  Too late, when sick and weak he recants his past

and then repents.

 

The early days of youthful years,

With their days of joy, smiles and tears.

As we courted damsels, young and fair;

And strutted around with a haughty air.

 

We dined on roasted lamb and swine.

Drank champagne sweet and vintage wine;

Bragging until our throats got sore.

Glittering clothes we daily wore.

 

Short sightedness has made us blind

Aimless we wander but fail to find,

The solemn path to righteousness

Confined to a fake life of ignorance.

 

Suddenly the inevitable call does come,

Without a trumpet, without a drum

Unprepared we depart one and all;

Each in response to his final call.

 

As the funeral moves to right and left,

With some lamenting; some bereft.

Others thinking of riches left by the dead.

While crocodile tears are being shed.

 

And as the mourners hug and part,

And when the kith and kin depart,

And when all is silent and lonely dark

The midnight dogs start to bark.

 

All the barking dogs will never wake

The dead; who their final slumber take

Dust to dust and unto dust

God’s ordinance is a simple must.

 

Full five feet deep under the soil,

End all our labours all our toil.

There, when the cold flesh rots;

A feast for the swarming maggots.

 

In the dark narrow confines of the grave,

A daunting residence even for the brave.

We await the day of Mercy or Torment.

A thin white shroud our only garment.

 

There’s no company to cheer and please.

No friends to laugh and joke or tease.

Pitch darkness and loneliness for a friend;

There all the worldly things come to end.

 

And woe betide the sinners there,

Though dead they lie but well aware.

The squeezing earth is pressing hard.

Their terrible screams remain unheard.

 

Then comes the day when all arise,

Doomsday; a day of reckoning and surprise

There we meet no parents, kith or kin.

All dumb-struck; atoning for each sin.

 

God!  Forgive this sinner who now repents.

Poor, and weak, he kneels and bents

O God, Thou knew this sinner and his whim!

Show him Thy mercy, be kind to him.

 

Mustafa Mohd Said                  Ruwi, 20th May 2010.

 

 

“Belief in our mortality, the sense that we are eventually going

to crack up and be extinguished like the flame of a candle, I say,

is a gloriously fine thing. It makes us sober; it makes us a little

sad; and many of us it makes poetic. But above all, it makes it

possible for us to make up our mind and arrange to live sensibly,

truthfully, and always with a sense of our own limitations.”

 

– Lin Yutang

 

 

Giving Thanks

By Michael Masterson

I woke up this morning in pain again. I injured my shoulder

wrestling a few weeks ago, and it doesn’t seem to be healing.

Certainly not as fast as it would have healed when I was in my 30s.

This is one of the many execrable things that happen to you when

you reach 60. But it’s hardly the worst. The worst is that you can’t

avoid thinking about death. People you know — colleagues, friends,

and family members — are seriously sick or dying.

 

Right now, I see death as a hateful thief — ready to rob me of the

time I need to accomplish the goals I have yet to accomplish.

There is so much still to do: books to write, movies to make,

business to conduct, and places to see. But most of all there

are relationships I owe time to.

A reader recently wrote asking me why, when discussing how

I spend my day, I don’t talk about the time I spend with my family

and friends. The main reason is that I don’t feel I should be

dragging them into public view without their permission. But

another reason is that I write mostly about what I’ve learned… and

 I haven’t learned how to do a very good job of that.

When I think about making good use of the time I have left, it’s

clear to me that working on my personal relationships should be

my top priority. So why don’t I do that now?

I once read a book called The Denial of Death. I don’t remember

much about it, but I do remember what I tookaway from it: It is

frightening to consciously recognize our mortality — to be fully

aware that one day we will cease to exist. The fear of death is so

great, in fact, that the reality of death must be suppressed from

our consciousness so we can go forward with our lives.

In other words, we deny death in order to live fully.

I think this is true. especially for the young. But as we age,

it becomes more difficult to keep death away from our thinking.

And eventually, we come to a crossroad where we must decide:

Should I continue to deny death, to “rage against the dying of

the light”? Or should I learn to accept the fact that we are all

dead men on leave and learn to live, as Thomas Ken said, “that

I may dread the grave as little as my bed”? I think we can do

both. We can continue to live our lives fully and purposefully –

even embracing long-term goals — while gradually allowing the

reality of death to sit comfortably in our psyches.

 By Mustafa Mohamed Said

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Palestinians make history at UN Reply

Palestinians make history at UN

(Reuters)24 September 2011, 6:42 AM

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas made history in his people’s long quest for statehood asking the UN to admit Palestine as a member state, stirring US and Israeli anger. Abbas handed UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon a letter requesting full UN membership, which the Security Council will discuss on Monday. The United States has vowed to support its Israeli ally and use its veto if a vote is held.“I do not believe that anyone with a shred of conscience can reject our application … and our admission as an independent state,” Abbas told the UN General Assembly in an impassioned speech that won a standing ovation even as Israeli and U.S. delegates looked on stone-faced.

Trying to head off a clash in the Security Council, a quartet of Middle East mediators urged a return to peace talks within four weeks, “substantial progress” within six months and an agreement to be struck within a year.

Highlighting the divisions in the Palestinian camp, Hamas, rejected Abbas’ move as “begging” for statehood. “States are not built upon UN resolutions. States liberate their land and establish their entities,” said Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh.

The Quartet — the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations — asked Israel and the Palestinians to submit proposals on territory and security within three months.

“The Quartet proposal represents the firm conviction of the international community that a just and lasting peace can only come through negotiations,” US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, urging both sides to seize the chance to talk.

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, the Quartet’s special envoy,said the major powers believed they were closing in on guidelines that both sides could accept.

But previous proposed timetables for negotiations, such as a one-year deadline set by former U.S. President George W. Bush in 2007 and one by Obama a year ago, have run into the sand.

Abbas’ statehood ploy exposes waning U.S. influence in a region shaken by Arab revolts and shifting alliances that have pushed Israel, still militarily strong, deeper into isolation.

In their speeches, Abbas and Netanyahu both said they extended their hands to the other party, but each blamed their opponents for the failure of past peace efforts.

“We cannot achieve peace through UN resolutions,” Netanyahu said, demanding that the Palestinians recognize Israel as the Jewish state, something they reject because they say that would prejudice the rights of Palestinian
refugees.

Netanyahu offered to meet Abbas immediately in New York, minutes after Abbas said settlement activity must cease first.

Loss of faith

 The Palestinians say they will give the Security Council “some time” to consider their request, but if that fails may ask the General Assembly for upgraded status short of full membership that could let them join international bodies.

Abbas’ statehood bid reflects a loss of faith after 20 years of failed peace talks sponsored by the United States and alarm at Israeli settlement expansion in occupied land Palestinians want for a state.

“This (settlement) policy will destroy the chances of achieving a two-state solution and … threatens to undermine the structure of the Palestinian National Authority and even end its existence,” Abbas declared.

It was the first time he has spoken so starkly of the PA’s possible demise, highlighting problems faced by a body set up as a state-in-waiting but now seen by its critics as little more than a big municipality, managing the civilian affairs of the main Palestinian cities under Israeli occupation.

Dissolution of the PA would throw responsibility for ruling all of the West Bank back to Israel as the occupying power.

Israeli and U.S. politicians have threatened aid cuts that could cripple the PA, the source of 150,000 jobs.

Israeli delegates stayed in the hall during Abbas’ speech, which was punctuated by applause, especially when he recalled his predecessor Yasser Arafat’s 1974 admonition to the United Nations: “Do not let the olive branch
fall from my hand.”

In the West Bank, flags and portraits of Abbas and Arafat, draped buildings in a Ramallah square where Palestinians watched a live broadcast of Abbas’ speech.

“We have come to take part with our people in asking for our rights,” said Mohammed Hamidat, 40. “With the current closed horizons, it’s the only thing we can do, even if the result is failure. It’s been years since we have seen anything new: this is a first step.”

Israeli settler Meir Bartler, 25, said: “We don’t care what they’re up to at the UN We have the bible, which says the land of Israel belongs to the Jewish people.”

A gulf of mistrust separates Israelis and Palestinians, who each feel their existence is at stake in a bitter struggle over borders, security, refugees and Jerusalem.

Political rifts among Palestinians, and the constraints of U.S. domestic politics, where support for Israel is strong, further complicate efforts to bridge the gaps.

Abbas spokesman Nabil Abu Rdaineh said the Quartet proposal would be discussed in Ramallah but indicated there could be no compromise on the core issues of the 1967 borders and Jewish settlement construction.

Burden of history

 The divisions are rooted in a heavy burden of history, painfully contested narratives and recurring bloodshed.

The United Nations partitioned Palestine in 1947, but Arab states rejected that and declared war on the new state of Israel, which then captured more territory than it had been allotted under the UN plan and dispossessed hundreds of thousands of Palestinians, who became refugees.

Two decades after Israel seized the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip in the 1967 Middle East war, which it launched fearing Arab states were about to attack it, the Palestine Liberation Organization recognized Israel and reduced its demands to a state on those territories.

In 1993, PLO leader Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin shook hands at the White House on a plan for Palestinian self-rule, which was never fully implemented.

Israel has expanded its settlements in the West Bank, although it dismantled them in the Gaza Strip, now ruled by Hamas who refuse to recognize the Jewish state.

Abbas accepts that negotiations are still necessary, but argues statehood will put Palestinians on a more equal footing. Israel sees the UN bid as an attempt to destroy its own legitimacy.

Palestine’s President Mahmoud Abbas addresses the 66th United Nations General Assembly at the UN headquarters in New York, September 23, 2011.- Reuters

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas made history in his people’s long quest for statehood asking the UN to admit Palestine as a member state, stirring US and Israeli anger.

Palestinians take to streets to cheer on UN bid 1

Palestinians take to streets to cheer on UN bid

September 24, 2011
Associated Press
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RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) — Thousands of jubilant, flag-waving Palestinians, watching on outdoor screens across the West Bank, cheered their president on Friday as he submitted his historic request for recognition of a state of Palestine to the United Nations.

Mahmoud Abbas’ defiant stance, pushing for U.N. recognition over strong objections from the U.S. and Israel, has struck a chord with Palestinians increasingly disillusioned after nearly two decades of failed efforts to bring them independence. At the U.N. General Assembly, Abbas’ announcement was met by a standing ovation, a stirring sight for Palestinians who felt their plight had largely been forgotten.

In the city of Nablus, thousands packed into the main square, decorated with large Palestinian flags and posters of Abbas. Fathers came with children on their shoulders. Young men climbed onto surrounding rooftops. Elderly women were assisted by younger relatives.

The crowd cheered throughout the speech, roaring ecstatically when Abbas, known as Abu Mazen, announced from the podium of the General Assembly that he had submitted the request for full U.N. membership.

“We are here celebrating because Abu Mazen is making us a state. We want to have our own state, like any other country. All countries must support us,” said Reem al-Masri, a 30-year-old schoolteacher, who lost a brother and two cousins in fighting with Israel during the second Palestinian uprising against occupation a decade ago.

“This is our land. We’re going to be strong in it until it’s liberated. When you have a state all your dreams come true,” she said.

In Ramallah, the seat of Abbas’ government, a crowd of several thousand cheered, whistled and chanted “God is great” during Abbas’ speech. Fuad Ashilla, 50, said it’s important Abbas not succumb to American pressure to withdraw his request.

Some Palestinians said they were inspired by the wave of protests across the Arab world calling for political freedom.

“As you saw in the Arab world, when the people go to the street they say what people want,” said Ghassan Jabr, 47, at Yasser Arafat Square in Ramallah. “If this is what people want, then this must happen.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the General Assembly shortly after Abbas, saying he was ready to make painful compromises for peace, but that the Palestinians must take Israeli security concerns seriously. In the West Bank city of Hebron, several spectators threw shoes at an outdoor screen during Netanyahu’s speech in a show of contempt.

The joy over Abbas’ move was marred by violence just hours earlier. Near the West Bank village of Qusra, Israeli soldiers shot dead a Palestinian man during rock-throwing clashes between the villagers and Israeli settlers, according to witnesses and military accounts.

Earlier Friday, Palestinians supporting the recognition bid clashed with Israeli soldiers in three West Bank locations.

At Qalandiya, a major Israeli checkpoint between the West Bank and Jerusalem, Israeli troops fired tear gas to disperse Palestinian stone-throwers. The confrontations lasted several hours, and by late afternoon, medics said some 70 Palestinians had been injured by rubber-coated steel pellets or suffered tear gas inhalation.

In the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh, demonstrators carried a chair painted in the U.N.’s signature blue to symbolize the quest for recognition. They burned Israeli flags and posters of President Barack Obama, and threw stones before being enveloped by tear gas fired by Israeli troops. Clashes were also reported in the nearby village of Bilin.

Abbas has called for peaceful marches in support of his bid to win U.N. recognition of a Palestinian state in the West Bank, Gaza and east Jerusalem — territories Israel captured in the 1967 Mideast War. Friday night’s rallies indicated that his people are heeding that call, though both Israeli and Palestinian officials have expressed concerns that demonstrations could spill over into violence.

Late Friday, the Israeli military said it had gone on high alert for what it called an imminent Hamas attack along its border with Egypt. Lt. Col. Avital Leibovich, an army spokeswoman, said there was “concrete intelligence” that Hamas and maybe other militant groups were trying to infiltrate the border — in a potential attempt to torpedo the Palestinian statehood bid at the U.N., which Hamas opposes.

Last month, militants infiltrated Israel from Egypt, killing eight Israelis. Six Egyptian soldiers were killed as Israel pursued the attackers.

An Egyptian official said he received reports from the Israeli side that there were plans by militants groups to plant a car bomb on the border. The official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said authorities in Egypt briefly closed the border crossing, but it has since reopened.

Full U.N. membership can only be bestowed by the U.N. Security Council, where Abbas’ request will almost certainly be derailed — either by a failure to win the needed nine votes in the 15-member body or by a U.S. veto if the necessary majority is obtained.

The Palestinians say they are seeking full U.N. membership to underscore their right to statehood, but have left open the option of a lesser alternative — a nonmember observer state. Such a status would be granted by the General Assembly, where the Palestinians enjoy broad support.

Siding with Israel, Obama has said a Palestinian state can only be established as a result of negotiations, and that there is no short-cut to independence.

Abbas has said negotiations remain his preference, but that he will not resume talks — frozen since 2008 — unless Israel agrees to the pre-1967 frontier as a baseline and freezes all settlement construction on occupied land. The Palestinian demands are widely backed by the international community, including the U.S., but Obama has been unable to persuade Israel’s hardline prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, to agree to them.

Netanyahu says he wants to negotiate without preconditions and accuses the Palestinians of missing an opportunity for peace. Abbas says settlement expansion pre-empts the outcome of negotiations by creating facts on the ground.

Abbas enjoys broad popular support at home for his recognition bid, but his main political rival, the Islamic militant Hamas, opposes it. Hamas has ruled the Gaza Strip since seizing it from Abbas in a violent takeover in 2007.

Gaza’s Hamas prime minister, Ismail Haniyeh, said Friday that Abbas was giving up Palestinian rights by seeking recognition for a state in the pre-1967 borders.

On Friday evening, several Hamas officials watched the speech at an office in Gaza City, taking notes and exchanging text messages with leaders of the movement in Syria and Lebanon.

Hamas’ founding charter calls for the destruction of Israel and a state in all of the territory between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River.

“The Palestinian people do not beg the world for a state, and the state can’t be created through decisions and initiatives,” Haniyeh said. “States liberate their land first and then the political body can be established.”

Associated Press