A Cigar Soirée with George Galloway
by: Amir Nadimi
The most controversial and outspoken British political figure since
Winston Churchill, Respect MP George Galloway has made
headlines around the world with his outspoken stance on the War on
Iraq and his open  support for Hezbollah.  There are few public
figures in the world that would risk as Galloway would say their
"political life's blood" to take the side of truth, justice and peace. As
one of the leaders of the British Anti-War coalition, George Galloway
has given voice to millions of his countrymen and millions around the
world who wallow in the frustration of not being able to express their
feelings and sentiments about topics from the cyclical Israeli
aggression against Arabs, to the Civil catastrophe brewing in Iraq
due to the current war. Why is it, that no other public figure, politician,
statesmen and or celebrity at large has dared to speak the truth with
such driven confidence ? One word sums it all up, integrity.
Although GG's battles take place in Parliament, world stages and his talk radio show rather than sword wielding on horseback, his
inequivocal stance on all issues close to his heart is what makes the man. Passionate in all sense of the word, he has debated many
people on many of our daily issues including the likes of Christopher Hitchens and has lashed them all with his tongue on stage and/or live
television.  His charm sways audiences worldwide and serves to reinforce his popularity for the voiceless. What makes Galloway so
important as a voice for the opposition to powerful war-mongering interests is not so much of what he says, but the fact that
those words are
coming out of  
that mouth. The point is, may people across the globe fear retribution in one way or another to voice their personal heartfelt
opinion about the situation at hand when it comes to Iraq, Afghanistan and the true nature of both these operations and the general "War on
Terror". Needless to say, I speak for many when I acknowledge this reality.

How many of you have tried bringing up the subject at work or in social settings and felt anxiety and unease fill the room leaving one almost
isolated in their thoughts and beliefs ? I'm sure we've all been there several times or at least once since the tragic events of September 11th,
2001. Well, what makes Galloway different ? Why is it that he goes about saying what he feels and doesn't even second guess his
statements ? Very simple, shear integrity. How many politicians do you know that will truly say what they believe about hot topics and/or
international events which most American and British politicians are careful to either steer clear from or answer as diplomatically as possible
in order not to ruffle any feathers of viewers and more importantly their constituencies ? Galloway's constituency is precisely made up of
ordinary people such as you and I who feel their voice is not heard or have angst to voice themselves in fear of committing career suicide or
even worse be profiled by national security establishments.

Galloway is unlike any politician of his time. However, his outspokenness has also come with a price. The price however, is priceless
compared to the tremendous amount of hope and exaltation it has brought to thousands of Middle Easterners within the Mid-East as well as
around the world. He speaks the truth and says all the things that many people wish they could say but don't do so. Galloway is a burning
torch for all of those who have ever felt guilted into silence because of their ethnic background or simply because of the way they look. To
have a Scotsman speak and express the sentiments in the hearts of so many Arabs and other Muslims is a refreshing site.

"The Arab regimes of today are weak and corrupt" he remarks. The innately corrupt nature of most of the Arab states has been an
impediment to the greater cause of the Middle East. He recalls that prior to America's invasion of Iraq he was at the top of the list of all the
Arab Embassy's Christmas card list, but shortly after Baghdad was taken, his so-called allies and supporters abandoned him and quietly
followed America's march to War. He jokingly admitted that the next Christmas he had only recieved only 2 Christmas cards, one from The
Palestinian Authority and the other from nation of Qatar.
It is not everyday that one gets exclusive access to one of the busiest political activists. On a short visit to Canada in November 2006,
organized by various university organizations and the Canadian Anti-War Coalition, we had the pleasure of sitting back and relaxing with
George over some fine Cubans. To my surprise, as I went to offer Mr. Galloway one of the fine Cubans I had preserved in my personal
humidor for over 6 years, I noticed that he also had a Monte Cristo #4 (my personal favourite and the preferred  smoke of a certain Cuban
guerrilla leader) which made the experience evermore enjoyable. We were all worn out from the extended lecture given by the inexaustable
Galloway and it was a pleasure to get away from it all and lay back. The  most striking part about the evening was to appreciate how sincere
GG felt towards all Arab nationalist causes. Whether it be the never ending Palestinian issue, to defending Hezbollah as a political and
military presence in Lebanon, to concerns about the future of Syria and of course a possible attack on Iran. The question that crosses one's
mind is how GG can go about saying things that one couldn't imagine other prominent people saying. Repeated stances that GG is known
for such as "Hezbollah is NOT nor has it EVER been a terrorist organization". If this was heard by any other politician of the day, it would be
shear career suicide. His defiance within Tony Blair's Labour Party and conviction against going to War with Iraq made members of his own
party abandon him which lead to his inevitable expulsion in 2003. Yet GG went on to create his RESPECT Party and today enjoys strong
support of his constituency as well as the support of hundreds of thousands of Muslims and Arabs across the UK and the world at large.
George Galloway  vs. U.S Senate (5/17/05)
BODAZEY with Galloway at Montreal's Premiere Cigar Lounge, Stogey's
A modern day 'Lawrence of Arabia' ?
Stogey's Lounge - Montreal, November 2006
Despite this fact, we hope that George Galloway will be rest assured that his
legions of fans hold him dear in their hearts not only throughout the holiday
season but all year long, for his duty is called on a higher plain. One of justice,
peace and perserverence all throughout what now appears to be his life's
struggle. As he ends many of his speeches, we leave all of our readers with GG's
recurring thought "No Justice, No Peace".  May there first be justice for all
countries and nations so that peace can prevail.
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