Friday, November 25, 2011

Blast Rocks Hezbollah Stronghold In South Lebanon

by Mohammed Zaatari

SIDDIQIN, Lebanon: An explosion shook a Hezbollah stronghold near Siddiqin in the Tyre region of south Lebanon overnight, a security source told The Daily Star Wednesday.

The Lebanese Army released a statement Wednesday afternoon saying that the explosion was likely the result of a landmine or a cluster bomb left over from the July-August war between Lebanon and Israel in 2006.

Earlier Wednesday, the security source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the cause of the blast, which was heard shortly before midnight, could not be determined due to a heavy security blanket by Hezbollah that followed the explosion.

In its statement Wednesday, the army said it had searched the area but found no trace of the explosion as it “left no visible effects.”

Early in the day, local media said the explosion likely took place at a Hezbollah arms cache.

In a statement later in the day, Hezbollah denied that the explosion in south Lebanon was a result of an explosion at an arms depot.

"What has been circulating in the media regarding the explosion in Sidiqqin and that it is related to storage center for Hezbollah is utterly false,” the party said in the statement.

Four Israeli warplanes were spotted flying over Siddiqin at around 10.00 a.m. and patrols by the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon were active in the area. A UNIFIL helicopter could also be seen flying over the village.

A spokesman for the U.N. peacekeeping force said UNIFIL had heard about the explosion on the news.

"We have no information at the moment. We are checking this report," Andrea Tenenti told The Daily Star by telephone.

Mohammed Zaatari

Source: Thanks to IMRA;

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'Iran CIA Agent Arrests Linked to Missile Testing'

by Yaakov Lappin

Iran's claim to arresting 12 CIA agents in its territory is linked to clandestine efforts by Tehran to disperse missiles around the country, a senior Iran analyst in the US told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday.

Professor Raymond Tanter, adjunct scholar at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, and founder of the Washington-based Iran Policy Committee, said the Iranians were moving and testing missiles "that would form the first response" to an Israeli strike on Iran's nuclear sites.

"The rollup of alleged western spies in Iran involves the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC)," Tanter said, adding that this was an organization which "operates all of Iran’s Scud missiles and provides the military leadership for Iranian missile production."

"Events in Iran concern surreptitious testing and movement of missiles at an IRGC facility during mid-November to harden and hide them from surprise attack," he added.

Referring to a mysterious and powerful blast that rocked a missile base on the outskirts of Tehran earlier this month, killing General Hassan Moghaddam, the architect of Iran's missile program, and at least 16 other Iranian officials, Tanter said, "The accident in Iran is consistent with statements by Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak that Tehran seeks to create a 'zone of immunity,' which spreads missile sites around. The goals are to increase the costs of an Israeli first strike, lower the likelihood of success, and decrease the time window of opportunity for Israel to attack Iran."

Earlier on Thursday, Iran's IRNA official media outlet said the supposed agents were planning to attack Iranian targets. The report quoted a senior Iranian security official as saying that the alleged spies were planning to carry out espionage attacks to "damage Iran both from inside and outside with a heavy blow, using regional intelligence services."

"Fortunately, with swift reaction by the Iranian intelligence department, the actions failed to bear fruit," the official, named as Parviz Sorouri, a member of Iran's foreign policy and national security committee, added.

Sourouri also said the alleged agents were working with "the Zionist regime."

Tanter said that "there is a humongous need for human intelligence from inside Iran," adding, "The best source to complement western intelligence on the IRGC is the main Iranian opposition organization, the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq (MeK), which is under siege in Iraq but still maintains an effective intelligence network in the Iranian national security establishment."

On Tuesday, unnamed US officials were quoted by Reuters as saying that Hezbollah too "succeeded in identifying and arresting informants within its ranks who were working for the CIA," and described the development as an apparent "serious setback for US intelligence."

"Some former US officials said that the CIA informants, believed to be local recruits rather than US citizens, were uncovered, at least in part, due to sloppy procedures - known in the espionage world as 'tradecraft,' - used by the agency," Reuters said.

Yaakov Lappin


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Congressmen Ask for Probe into PA Use of US Funds

by Lahav Harkov

Congressmen Ted Deutsch (D-FLA) and Steve Israel (D-NY) have asked US Comptroller-General Gene Dodaro to investigate the Palestinian Authority’s use of American funding, three weeks after MK Moshe Matalon (Israel Beiteinu) sent a letter informing the budget committees of the US Senate and House of Representatives of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s policy to pay murderers released from Israeli prisons $5,000 and build them new homes.

“Many of the released prisoners were convicted of orchestrating and carrying out Hamas-sponsored terrorist attacks in Israel, including the bombing of a Tel Aviv nightclub that killed 21 people, the attack on a Netanya hotel that killed 29 people, and the bombing of a Sbarro Pizzeria that killed 15 people,” Deutsch and Israel wrote.

The two congressmen explained to Dodaro that they “are troubled by reports of President Abbas’ use of Palestinian Investment Fund (PIF) funds to provide housing for these convicted terrorists.”

According to the letter, the US contributed to the PIF after PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad founded it in 2002 “under a framework of transparency and accountability.” However, recently there has been “ambiguity surrounding the amount of US taxpayer dollars contributed to the PIF,” Deutsch and Israel wrote.

In addition to Abbas’ plans to build houses for terrorists, Deutsch and Israel “are concerned about the increasing lack of transparency for the PIF as well as reports that Prime Minister Fayyad is no longer overseeing the fund and that Hamas has taken control of PIF assets in Gaza.”

The letter also requests that the US Government Accountability Office, which Dodaro heads, investigate whether US Economic Support Funds (ESF) given to the PA were used to fund Abbas’ ’”trips around the world “on his misguided attempt to unilaterally declare statehood at the United Nations…efforts that are in direct contravention of US policy.”

The congressmen say US ESF should not be used “to fund Mr. Abbas’ extensive lobbying to achieve a Palestinian state by any means other than direct negotiations with Israel.”

“The US must be unequivocally committed to ensuring that American taxpayer dollars are used to serve the interests of the US and our allies around the world,” Deutsch and Israel wrote.

Matalon received a copy of the democratic congressmen’s request after sending a letter to Senate and House of Representatives budget committees, informing them that Abbas is rewarding “unrepentant terrorists.”

“At the ceremony Abbas held [ in honor of released prisoners] in Ramallah, he is reported as having praised these individuals for their ‘courage and sacrifice,’” the Israel Beiteinu MK wrote. “The atrocities referred to by Abbas as acts of ‘courage’...include the murders of scores of innocents, including women and children.”

Matalon’s letter reads: “I feel it incumbent upon myself to present these facts to you, as a fellow parliamentarian, not as interference in your parliamentary activities, but rather in order to ensure that the full facts are before you, as you deliberate on whether to continue extending financial assistance to the Palestinian Authority.”

Lahav Harkov


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CIA Disaster Continues; 12 Arrested in Iran

by Rick Moran

On the heels of several arrests by Hezb'allah in Lebanon comes news that another US spy ring in Iran has been rolled up.


Parliamentarian Parviz Sorouri, who sits on the powerful committee of foreign policy and national security, claimed that the arrested agents planned to strike at Iranian interests with the aid of Israel.

Sorouri said the spy network aimed at damaging Iran in the security, military and nuclear sectors.

The Iranian official's comments come after current and former U.S. officials said on Monday that dozens of spies working for the CIA were captured recently in Lebanon and Iran, as well as after Iran's claim earlier this year that it had intercepted a major spy ring.

Following the report of a compromised CIA ring in Lebanon, the French intelligence newsletter Intelligence Online indicated in its latest issue that U.S. Congressman Mike Rogers, a member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, arrived recently in Beirut to probe the affair.

The timing of this couldn't have been worse. Analysts don't believe this is the work of a mole, but rather highly technical capabilities of Hezb'allah in tracking cell phones and other electronic means. The bottom line is that the CIA got sloppy and are now paying for it.

It will take years to rebuild these networks. In the meantime, we head into a very dangerous period with little on the ground intel to keep us informed of what's going on.

Rick Moran


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Palestinian Refugees vs. the Arabs

by David Meir-Levi

In 2008, during a presentation at a panel discussion on the Middle East conflict at Santa Clara University (Santa Clara, CA), a young Arab-American lady claiming to be a “Palestinian refugee” posed to the present writer the following question:

“Why can any ‘Moishe Pipik’ from Brooklyn go to live in Israel, but I, a child of Palestinian parents living in the USA, cannot go back to my ancestral homeland, Palestine, where our families lived since time immemorial?”

The response to that question may be useful to readers who find themselves confronted with similar questions by friends, relatives, colleagues, or others.

The first thing to note is that “Palestinians” have not been living in Palestine (now Israel) from time immemorial. Turkish and British records are clear that Palestine was flooded with Arab immigrants from the late 1850’s onward due to the salutary effects of British colonial and Zionist developments from the mid-19th century onward. Groundbreaking work on the Arab historical demography of Palestine during the second half of the 19th and the first half of the 20th centuries has been done by Professor Justin McCarthy in his book The Population of Palestine: Population History and Statistics of the Late Ottoman Period and the Mandate (Institute for Palestine Studies Series), summarized here. McCarthy, not a Jew nor an Israeli nor a Zionist, writing for a Palestinian institute, demonstrates that the Arab population of Palestine almost quadrupled from c. 1855 to 1947. Only a tiny minority of Arabs can claim ancestral attachment to this territory, and even those claims are based solely on anecdotal accounts for which there is no empirical evidence.

Then one must recall that the Arab side started the war, and lost the war. Israel accepted the UN partition plan in 1947. The Arab states launched a war. When an aggressor loses a war because the victim country successfully repulses the aggression, and in doing so captures some of the aggressor’s land, the disposition of that captured territory, and its inhabitants, must await a peace treaty between the belligerents. Refugees from the aggressor country have recourse to repatriation only in the context of a peace treaty. Most Arab countries have refused to make peace. It was Arab aggression that started the war. Had there been no war there would have been no refugees, and there would have been a state for the Palestinians since 1947.

Moreover, a careful analysis of the evidence from Arab sources indicates that the Arab side encouraged, and in some cases even forced c. 90% of the refugees to flee. Therefore the Arab leadership bears the onus of culpability for creating the problem, and thus the Arab side, and not Israel, bears responsibility for solving the problem. Because Israel was not threatening that 90% who fled, there is no legal claim for refugee status. Refugee status accrues to those who flee due to persecution or danger. Just as that 170,000 stayed and encountered no danger, so too could many hundreds of thousands more have stayed.

It was not Israel, but Arab countries’ refusal to respond to Israel’s call for peaceful negotiations that made it impossible for refugees to be repatriated. At the Rhodes Armistice talks in 1949, Israel offered reparations, resettlement assistance, and repatriation, but only in the context of peace treaties. The Arab leaders refused all talk of peace. Had there been peace, there could have been repatriation, and perhaps even the creation of a Palestinian state after the war. It was the Arab side that slammed the door on that option.

To the onus of culpability for creating and maintaining the refugee problem at the onset one must add the calumny of Arab states’ exacerbating it for decades thereafter. Except for Jordan, Arab host countries denied citizenship to the refugees, locked them in barbed-wire camps, kept armed guards to prevent their leaving, and legislated laws against integration of refugees in to their host country. Lebanese law, for example, lists more than 70 professions in which the Arab refugees were prohibited from engaging. It is illegal for a Palestinian refugee to buy land in Lebanon. There is ample evidence from Arab sources that the Syrian government transported fleeing refugees, at gunpoint, in cattle cars to far-flung borders in 1949, in order to keep them away from Palestine, to thus prevent their repatriation, and to eternalize the “refugee problem.”

But Arab guilt in stymieing any solution does not stop there. At the Lausanne conference of 1949, Israel offered unconditionally and unilaterally to repatriate 100,000 Arab refugees even without any peace accords. The Arab leaders refused.

Israeli offers of repatriation and reparation continued until June, 1967. The Arab side refused all offers. Not Israel, but the Arab refusal to countenance any possibility of peace treaties offered by Israel condemned the refugees to penury and homelessness.

Despite this criminal treatment of their brethren by Arab states, Israel succeeded in repatriating many. Between 1949 and June, 2005, Israel repatriated more than 127,000 Arabs who claimed refugee status, in the context of programs for family re-unification and spousal accommodation, or in programs where refugees sought asylum in Israel due to persecution in their host countries (usually Christian Arabs or homosexuals). Israel ended this policy in 2005 when it was discovered that Palestinian terrorists were using this policy to enter the country and gain Israeli citizenship, and with that the ID cards and automobile license plates which allowed them to travel freely around the country and perpetrate acts of terror.

While Israel was seeking resolution to the problem, Arab host countries exploited their refugees, keeping them as prisoners in refugee camps. Yasir Arafat describes, in his authorized biography, the brutal treatment of refugees in the Gaza Strip by the Egyptians. The Arab host countries did this in order to perpetuate the problem and use it as a moral bludgeon against Israel and Europe and the USA. Were it not for this unconscionable Machiavellian use of their own people’s suffering for political gain, there might have been resolution to the problem decades ago.

International law weighs in on Israel’s behalf. There is no refugee status for the second and following generations. There is no international law which accommodates demands of second or third generation children born of refugees who have relocated and resettled. Per international law, the status of refugee does not extend to the children and later generations of refugees once they are resettled elsewhere. Children and grandchildren of refugees have no legal or moral claims to property which they may claim to be ancestral. A relocated and resettled family is no longer a refugee family, and that family’s children are not refugees. See “Right of Return of Palestinian Refugees,” for a detailed discussion of this issue, with citations to international conventions and legal sources relating to refugees.

A further complexity is that the war has not ended! There is no sovereign nation in the world, and across all of world history, which could ever be expected to accommodate the influx of civilians from the population of a belligerent and hostile enemy WHILE THAT ENEMY IS STILL, DE IURE AND DE FACTO, AT WAR with that nation.

So Israel, as all sovereign states, accrues to itself the right to make whatever immigration laws it feels will most benefit the state and its citizens. It decided to decree a “right of return” to all Jews world-wide. Those laws offer special privileges for Jews. That is bias, indeed. But it is the same kind of bias that American minorities have enjoyed thanks to an accommodating, forward-looking and sensitive American society and government which declared that Affirmative Action was a moral enterprise worth pursuing to assist in righting the wrongs of slavery and Jim Crow and anti-Asian sentiments and misogyny.

Israel offers the same immigration options to non-Jews that Denmark offers to non-Danes; and it offers more generous and accommodating immigration options to Jews who wish to live there in order to right the wrongs of European and Islamic societies’ millennia of oppression and repression and mass murder and pogroms and exiles and genocide of Jews. These laws inconvenience native-born Israelis of all religions – and that is unfortunate; but it is the price that they have agreed to pay in order to help the oppressed and disadvantaged and threatened Jews world-wide.

The Israeli “right of return” does indeed allow any “Moishe Pipik” from Brooklyn to enjoy the benefits that these laws offer to Jews even though this Moishe Pipik and most of his friends and family are not oppressed. The reason for this is because Israel has decided, for good reason, that in order for Israel to continue to exist and to serve as the Affirmative Action state for all Jews everywhere and anywhere any time and forever, it needs all the help it can get from Jews everywhere. So not-oppressed Jews are encouraged to come and live in Israel so that they can strengthen the state and contribute to its society, so that that state and society are there to help other Jews….for as long as Jews are oppressed elsewhere.

And for those who chaff at the idea of a “Jewish” state, it seems appropriate to ask: do you have the same problem with a Christian state such as Ireland, or an Islamic state such as the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Muslim states of Pakistan and Afghanistan and Azerbaijan and Tajikistan, not to mention the most Muslim of all: Saudi Arabia.

Since there is no problem with states self-defining as Islamic, why is there a problem with a state which self-defines as Jewish?

David Meir-Levi


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The United Nations: The Devil's Jury

by David P. Goldman

In Stephen Vincent Benét's story "The Devil and Daniel Webster," Satan called a jury of the damned composed of turncoats, traitors, and Blackbeard the Pirate, "with the stench of hell still upon them." At the United Nations Human Rights Council, accusations against the Dutch political leader Geert Wilders will be heard by Chinese and Russian lawyers who spent the 1970s and 1980s running the "human rights" entities of their respective countries, an Egyptian-educated diplomat from Morocco, and a "human rights" specialist from Cuba, according to the UNHRC website. The Cuban died last year, but in the spirit of Benét's story, he still might be serving on the UN working group hearing Mr. Wilders's case.

Last week, three Dutch Moroccans filed a complaint against their country's government with the UNHRC, an entity that U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon in 2007 accused of a "pathological obsession with Israel," echoing similar complaints by the United States, Canada and the European Union. Under the Bush administration the United States boycotted the Council, but President Obama sent American diplomats back to it. On Oct. 1, the State Department released a statement claiming that "U.S. engagement thus far has resulted in significant improvements to the Human Rights Council as a multilateral forum for promoting and protecting human rights. Accomplishments include groundbreaking resolutions on freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, preventing discrimination against women, LGBT human rights, (and) religious tolerance."

As leader of the Party for Freedom, Holland's third-largest political party, Wilders has fought to limit Muslim immigration to his country, and demanded a hard line against "street terror" by Muslims in European cities. The former parliamentary assistant to the leading Dutch conservative politician Fritz Bolkestein, Wilders is a traditional liberal and a strong supporter of Israel. In January 2009, Dutch prosecutors accused him of "hate speech" against Islam; he was acquitted of all charges in March 2011. Wilders lives under continuous threat of murder by Islamists; he is guarded at all times and sleeps in a different location every night.

The Dutch-Moroccan complaint to the United Nations Human Rights Council claims that the Netherlands violated their human rights by failing to convict Wilders. Their complaint states:

Systematic incitement to hatred and discrimination against Muslims and other migrants has been committed over years – in different forms – by the Member of Parliament Geert Wilders. The complainants – who are Muslims and belong to the Dutch-Moroccan community in the Netherlands – feel discriminated against, humiliated and threatened by Mr. Wilders and the members and adherents of his party, resulting in discrimination and an increasingly negative attitude by considerable parts of the population. They are of the opinion that Mr. Wilders by his continued hate speech has poisoned the social climate in the Netherlands, that has become more and more anti-migrant and anti-Muslim.

The document contains no allegations about murder, torture, massacres, or imprisonment, the sort of human rights violations that routinely occur in countries that the Human Rights Council has specifically declined to consider, for example, Cuba and Belarus. The complainants state that their feelings were hurt.

Because "the District Court of Amsterdam acquitted Mr. Wilders…and subsequently dismissed the claims of the complainants," that is, followed due process, "no appeal is open to them" except to haul the Netherlands before the United Nations Human Rights Council.

This is made possible by a complaints procedure established by the U.N. General Assembly, which allows individuals to bring alleged human rights violations before the Council. Such complaints are referred to a "Working Group on Communications" composed of "independent experts." The members of the Working Group are listed on the UNHRC web site, and prove that a lifetime of promoting human rights abuses is no obstacle to a new career passing judgment on the human rights violations of others.

The Working Group members include one Vladimir Kartashkin, who was employed by the Moscow Institute of State and Law with brief interruptions between 1961 and 1992, that is, during a period when the KGB routine committed dissidents to psychiatric hospitals, and tortured and murdered political prisoners. Another member is Chen Shiqiu, the Vice-Chairman of the People's Republic of China Society for Human Rights Studies. His other affiliations show a special sort of attachment to human rights issues, including the China Association for Preservation and Development of Tibetan Culture, and the China Family Planning Association -- that is, the entities responsible for erasing Tibetan culture and forcing Chinese mothers to abort prospective second children. Stephen Vincent Benét could not have made this sort of thing up.

Also listed on the Working Group for Communications is Alfonso Martinez, a Cuban diplomat who served as the spokesman for his Foreign Ministry between 1994 and 1997. "As an expert in Human Rights he represented the Government of Cuba in numerous meetings and conferences, mainly within the UN system," according to a Taino News dispatch last year. Dr. Martinez helped persuade the United Nations Human Rights Council to take Cuba off its agenda, to the consternation of Secretary General Moon. Dr. Martinez died in 2010, but under the circumstances, that may not disqualify him from serving on the Working Group that will decide whether the Netherlands violated human rights by acquitting Geert Wilders.

Messrs. Kartashkin and Shiqiu (and perhaps the late Dr. Martine) are joined in the Working Group by Halima Warzazi, a Moroccan diplomat educated at the University of Cairo. To her credit, Warzazi has directed United Nations studies on female genital mutilation. How she will respond to the hurt feelings of the Dutch-Moroccan complainants remains to be seen. Americans became aware of Morocco's pattern of human rights abuse when Malika Oufkir's book Stolen Lives: Twenty Years in a Desert Jail became a best-seller in 2001.

If the complaint is taken seriously, the Obama administration will have to explain more clearly why it praises American participation in a forum which hires thugs with decades of service to some of the world's worst human rights violators, and empowers them to judge anyone who makes Muslims "feel discriminated against," as the complaint maintains. In theory, the UNHRC might refer the Netherlands for prosecution by the International Criminal Court, although it seems unlikely that matters might go that far. The Netherlands defending itself before Russian, Chinese, Cuban and Moroccan hacks is offensive enough.

David P. Goldman writes the Spengler column for Asia Times Online. His book How Civilizations Die (and why Islam is Dying, Too) was published by Regnery in September 2011.


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The Assault on Jewish Jerusalem

by Isi Leibler

The ongoing pressures exerted against construction in Jewish neighborhoods of Jerusalem like Gilo reflect intensified global efforts to redivide the city.

Like many aspects of the Israeli-Arab conflict, the issue of Jerusalem is being reviewed in a vacuum without relationship to the reality on the ground. It also overlooks the abominable restrictions on freedom of worship in the eastern part of the city between 1948 and 1967 when the city was occupied by Jordan. Jewish holy sites, including the 2000 year-old Jewish cemetery at the Mount of Olives were desecrated, with tombstones used to build latrines.

In the Old City, all 58 synagogues were razed to the ground, including the ancient Hurva synagogue.

Abdulla el-Tal, Jordan’s military governor of the Old City and an uninhibited anti-Semite, proudly proclaimed that “for the first time in 1,000 years, not a single Jew remains in the Jewish quarter... and as not a single building remains intact, this makes the return of the Jews here impossible.”

Christians were also maltreated, with over 60 percent of them emigrating from Jerusalem during that period.

Yet, since the reunification of the city in 1967 following Israel’s victory over the combined Arab assault, complete freedom of religion was immediately extended to all citizens of Jerusalem.

In addition, universities, hospitals and social service facilities provided absolutely equal services to Jew and Arab alike. One need only visit any of the major hospitals in Jerusalem to verify the extraordinary high standard of health benefits that unification provided for Arab residents.

IRONICALLY, JEWS today are the ones being discriminated against by their own government in their own capital. In 1967, immediately after the liberation of Jerusalem, Moshe Dayan effectively handed over the keys of the Temple Mount to the Muslim Waqf (religious authority), who retained total control and jurisdiction over this extensive area which includes the holiest Jewish site in the world. It proved to be a disastrous blunder.

That situation was further aggravated by the rabbinate, which on halachic grounds prohibited Jews from visiting the holy site. However, today many national religious rabbis maintain that Jews are entitled to visit most of the area and even consider it a mitzva to pray there.

But on a recent visit to the Temple Mount, I was astonished to observe the bizarre spectacle of Jews being bundled off by Israeli police in co-operation with the Wakf for quietly engaging in private prayer. I was informed that some Jews who were seen praying are permanently prohibited from visiting the area. This is scandalous.

For Israeli police to deny Jews the right to pray at their holiest site in their own capital because it offends Muslim sensitivities is surely outrageous. It amounts to practicing inverse discrimination, denying the same freedom of worship to our own people which we take pride in guaranteeing to others.

This chaotic arrangement also provided fuel to Palestinians to initiate a massive exercise in historical revisionism in order to bolster their false narrative. They are now frenziedly attempting to deny the Jewish links to Jerusalem and make the preposterous allegation that the Jewish relationship to Jerusalem was effectively a Zionist fabrication designed to justify the “invasion” of Palestine. It is a form of revisionism no less obscene than Holocaust denial and has emerged as a central tenet of hostile Palestinian nationalism.

As late as the 1930s, Muslim Council guidebooks identified Solomon’s Temple on the site. But those references were expunged in 1954 in favor of a new historical “narrative.”

In 2000, Arafat stunned then-US president Bill Clinton at Camp David by declaring that “Solomon’s Temple was not in Jerusalem. It was in Nablus.” On another occasion he said it was in Yemen.

Others, like Palestinian Authority spokesman Saeb Erekat, alleged that “the issue of the Temple... is a Jewish invention lacking any basis.”

PA President Mahmoud Abbas now repeatedly dismisses any Jewish link to the Holy Land and the PA Ministry of Information website describes the Jewish connection to Jerusalem as a “biblical myth.” Even the “moderate” Sari Nusseibeh claimed that “the historical ties and attachments of the Palestinians precede any Israeli claim to Jerusalem.”

These expressions were recently extended to even include denial of a Jewish link to the Western Wall.

Only last week, Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayib, head of Cairo’s al-Azhar University and the principal global religious authority for Sunni Muslims, warned that the continued “Judaization” of Jerusalem, which he claimed had originally been constructed by Arabs, would result in the annihilation of “the Zionist entity in Palestine.”

In addition, we are witnessing a systematic, ongoing course of wanton destruction in which bulldozers have been employed on the Temple Mount by the Palestinian Wakf in order to eliminate ancient Jewish archaeological evidence. But despite protests and expressions of outrage from most Israeli archaeologists, the government has refused to intervene.

The links of the Jewish people to Jerusalem are at the very core of our national and spiritual history and identity.

For over 2,000 years of exile we yearned and prayed for a return to Jerusalem, and since 1800 Jews have constituted the majority of the population of Jerusalem.

IT IS noteworthy that Yitzhak Rabin, in what proved to be his last Knesset speech before being assassinated, pledged that Jerusalem would never again be divided.

Yet the sad truth is that in addition to condemning any construction in Jewish Jerusalem as “undermining the peace process,” neither the United States nor the Europeans have even recognized Israeli sovereignty over west Jerusalem.

There is no doubt that were any areas of Jerusalem ever to fall under Palestinian jurisdiction, the despicable discriminatory practices applied by the Jordanians until 1967 would be reintroduced. Abu Mazen [Abbas] has already publicly proclaimed that not a single Jew would be permitted to live in any future Palestinian state.

It is also inconceivable that neighborhoods like Ramot, Gilo, French Hill, Ramat Eshkol and Givat Ze’ev will ever be seceded from Israel. No power could evacuate over 100,000 Jews from these areas.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel allegedly criticized Netanyahu recently in relation to the announcement of new construction in Gilo, but in view of her personal Berlin background she should be sensitive of the highly negative aspects of dividing a city. Although it will never happen, greater autonomy and allocation of municipal duties could be extended to Arabs in areas in which they comprise the majority of inhabitants.

Interestingly, a recent poll conducted by the Palestinian Center for Public Opinion demonstrated that 59 percent of Arab residents in Jerusalem were satisfied with their standard of living and that the majority strongly objected to dividing the city and living under PA jurisdiction. In fact, as many as 40% stated that if the city was divided, they would prefer to move to an Israeli neighborhood rather than fall under the authority of the corrupt Palestinian Authority and possibly eventually find themselves under Hamas control.

The writer’s website can be viewed at

This column was originally published in the Jerusalem Post

Isi Leibler


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Thursday, November 24, 2011

Help Wanted: a National Security President

by Frank Gaffney, Jr.

Until recently, most politicians, pundits and others among the so-called "smart people" insisted that Election 2012 was all about jobs, jobs, jobs. The more broad-minded contended that the related issues of the lousy economy and the imperatives of deficit reduction might also feature. But that was all the mattered, especially in the presidential contest.

Then, GOP candidate Herman Cain - a successful businessman who has risen in the polls in no small measure on the strength of his claim to have actually created jobs - gave an interview in which he seemed unaware that Communist China has the bomb.

Without skipping a beat, the elites denounced him as unfit to serve on the grounds that a man who was not proficient in national security and foreign policy matters could never become president. The jobs-jobs-jobs leitmotif gave way, at least for a time, to a new theme: the White House is no place for on-the-job-training about the nation's defense.

How quickly they forget. What Barack Obama knew about U.S. security policy before he became president amounted to little more than the anti-colonialist sentiments of his father and the virulently anti-American agitation of PLO flak Rashid Khalidi, terrorist William Ayers, revolutionary Saul Alinsky and radical pastor Jeremiah Wright.

Unfortunately, despite the on-the-job foreign and defense policy training Mr. Obama has, in fact, received during his time in office over the past nearly three years, he still seems largely clueless about U.S. security interests - and what it takes to safeguard them. Consider the following sample of his myriad, unforced errors:

President Obama has embraced the Muslim Brotherhood, an organization dedicated to imposing worldwide - including in the United States - the totalitarian Islamic doctrine known as shariah. His policies have helped bring the Brotherhood to power in North Africa and are legitimating its various fronts inside this country and otherwise facilitating their efforts to penetrate the U.S. government and dominate the American Muslim community.

Mr. Obama is effectively surrendering Iraq to Iran by removing all U.S. forces from the former for purely domestic political reasons and without regard for the consequences in the Middle East, and possibly beyond.

The Obama administration appears to be hell-bent on doing the same with respect to Afghanistan. The latest news is that U.S. official have not only begun negotiations with the Taliban. They have begun a dialogue as well with what is, if possible, an even more dangerous, despicable and irreconcilable adversary: the Haqqani network, based in Pakistan.

Mr. Obama's much-touted "reset" of relations with Russia has been shown to be a Potemkin exercise, with the end of the pretense that Washington had a more friendly and reliable partner in President Dmitry Medvedev giving way to the reality that the unremittingly hostile and authoritarian Vladimir Putin has been calling the shots all along - and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

Team Obama's massive investment (financial and political) in the United Nations has also proven a bust. Its willingness to diminish the U.S. role to more-or-less that of any other nation, while insisting on continuing to pick up more than a fifth of the organization's tab has reduced America not just to a paper tiger but a patsy, to boot. Meanwhile, the 57-member bloc known as the Organization of Islamic Cooperation is increasingly calling the shots, with help from the Russians and Chinese who can be relied upon to block anything remotely useful to us.

Matters are made vastly worse by President Obama's decisions to hollow out the United States military. As he memorably put it, "the nice thing about the defense budget is that it's so big, it's so huge, that a 1 percent reduction is the equivalent of the education budget." That sort of attitude has resulted in at least $460 billion worth of cuts in defense spending to date.

The associated damage is likely to be compounded by further reductions at the hands of the congressional supercommittee or, failing acceptance of its recommendations by the full Congress, via a meat-ax known as "sequestration." The latter would impose a further roughly $600 billion across-the-board reduction in Pentagon spending. The Obama administration's own civilian and uniformed defense leaders have warned that the effects of such a one-two punch would be catastrophic.

Should expertise on national security and foreign policy be a prerequisite for the presidency? The answer obviously must be a resounding "Yes" - especially in a world as dangerous as ours. Have we had it over the past nearly three years? The answer is equally resoundingly, "No."

We have to insist on a level of competence in the defense and foreign policy portfolio of our elected national leaders. In that connection, it is heartening that twoof the upcoming debates between Republican presidential candidates - one on November 12th at Wofford College in South Carolina and one sponsored by the American Enterprise Institute, the Heritage Foundation and CNN in Washington on November 22nd - will focus on national security-related topics.

While the liquidations of Osama bin Laden, Anwar al-Awlaki and a number of other high-profile terrorists on President Obama's watch are welcome, those accomplishments are, regrettably, more than offset by his serious failings like those noted above. The American people deserve, and need, a competent Commander-in-Chief. And they had better insist on getting one.

Frank Gaffney, Jr. is President of the Center for Security Policy (, a columnist for the Washington Times and host of the nationally syndicated program, Secure Freedom Radio.


Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

The Scourge of Clientitis

by Caroline Glick

For many years, observers of the US State Department on both sides of the American political spectrum have agreed that State Department officials suffer from a malady referred to as "clientitis." Clientitis is generally defined as a state of mind in which representatives of an organization confuse their roles.

Rather than advance the cause of their organization to outside organizations, they represent the interests of outside organizations to their own organizations.

In some cases, diplomats are simply corrupted by their host governments. For generations US diplomats to Saudi Arabia have received lucrative post-government service jobs at Saudi-owned or controlled companies, public relations firms and other institutions.

Often, the problem is myopia rather than corruption.

Diplomats who speak to foreign government officials on a daily basis often simply ignore the context in which these foreigners operate. They become friends with their interlocutors and forget that the latter are also agents of their governments tasked with promoting foreign interests in their dealings with US diplomats.

In Israel the situation is similar. Here, too, Foreign Ministry officials have a tendency to give preference to the positions of the governments or institutions to which they are assigned over the interests and positions of the Israeli government that sent them to their posts.

For instance, in September 2008, shortly after the UN allowed Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to use his speech at the UN General Assembly to accuse the Jews of controlling the world in a bid to poison and destroy it, then-Israeli ambassador to the UN Gabriela Shalev gave an interview to Army Radio in which she said her primary duty is "correcting the UN's image in the eyes of the people of Israel."

Since the scourge of clientitis among diplomats is widely recognized, governments are often able to consider its impact on diplomats when they weigh the credibility or wisdom of recommendations presented by their professional diplomats.

LESS WELL recognized and therefore largely unconsidered is how clientitis has negatively impacted the positions of military commanders.

Clientitis first became prevalent in the US Armed Forces and the IDF in the 1990s. In the immediate aftermath of the Cold War, the Clinton administration began transforming in earnest the US armed forces' role from war fighting to nation building. In Israel, with the onset of the peace process with the PLO in 1993, the IDF was ordered to change its operating guidelines. From then on, peacemaking was to take priority over war fighting and defeating terrorists.

Since September 11, 2011, the US military has vastly expanded its nation building roles around the world. US military commanders are promoted more for prowess in acting as diplomats-in-uniform than for their capacity to train and employ soldiers to kill and defeat the enemy. Commanders deployed to train the al-Qaida-infested Yemeni or Afghan militaries; liaise with the Hizbullah-dominated Lebanese Armed Forces; or train the Iranian-penetrated Iraqi military have little personal incentive to warn against these missions.

So, too, in working with their local counterparts on a daily basis, like their State Department colleagues, these US military officers have a marked tendency to ignore the broader context in which their local colleagues operate. And so, like their civilian colleagues at the US embassies in these countries, military commanders have a tendency to become the representatives of their foreign counterparts to the Pentagon and to Congress.

In the case of the IDF, in 1993 the entire General Staff was encouraged to embrace clientitis. Then prime minister and defense minister Yitzhak Rabin's decision in 1993 to appoint IDF commanders to lead negotiations with the PLO politicized the IDF to an unprecedented degree. Only generals who completely supported the peace process and forced their underlings to completely support it could expect promotion.

This political corruption of the IDF survived the destruction of the peace process in 2000. Due to successive governments' decisions to continue negotiating with the Palestinian Authority despite its refusal to make peace with Israel and its sponsorship of terrorism, the IDF has continued to participate in negotiations with the PA and lead liaison efforts with the Palestinian security forces.

As a consequence, whether due to the political views of officers on the ground, to institutional corrosion, or to officers' inability to view the statements of their Palestinian counterparts in the broader context of Palestinian and regional power politics, these IDF "peacemakers" act as the PA security services chief lobbyists to both the Israeli and US governments.

IN RECENT conversations with senior sources on Capitol Hill, it became apparent that American military trainers who work with the Lebanese Armed Forces were highly influential in convincing Congress to end its opposition to renewed US military assistance to the LAF.

Congress put a temporary hold on US military assistance to Lebanon in August 2010 after a Lebanese army sniper murdered IDF Lt.-Col. Dov Harari and critically wounded Capt. Ezra Lakia. Both officers were stationed on the Israeli side of the border.

In April, when Hizbullah gained control over the new Lebanese government, the Obama administration again temporarily froze military assistance to the LAF.

In September Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told the Hizbullah-controlled Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati that the US would renew its assistance. In October, the Pentagon hosted Lebanese Army Commander General Jean Kahwagi on an official visit.

According to Congressional sources, Congress has permitted continued military assistance to Lebanon, despite Hizbullah's control over both the government and the armed forces, because of the outspoken support of the US military for the military assistance program.

So too, according to Congressional sources. House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairwoman Ileana Ros- Lehtinen's decision to end her committee's block on US military assistance to the PA's security forces owed to IDF pressure to renew the assistance. That assistance was cut off in September following the PA's bid to achieve statehood at the UN.

Following the aid cut-off Palestinian commanders warned that if the US did not renew its financial support for the US trained Palestinian security services, its soldiers would seek funding from elsewhere - including from terror sponsoring governments like Iran and Syria, and from Hamas, and Hizbullah.

Obviously these warnings were nothing more than acts of extortion. And despite outcries from the Obama administration, Mrs. Ros-Lehtinen held firm.

However, according to senior Congressional sources, Mrs. Ros-Lehtinen was unable to brush off entreaties by IDF commanders asking that the US renew its funding of these forces. Two weeks ago - just as the PA renewed its unity talks with Hamas - she lifted her committee's block on military assistance to the PA.

THE IDEA that governments gain leverage over other governments by assisting them is not a new one. And it is certainly true. However, in all cases, the leverage gained by assisting foreign governments owes entirely to the other governments' understanding that such assistance can and will be ended if they fail to meet certain benchmarks of behavior that are dictated from the outset.

Once a government's threat of aid cut-off to another government is removed or is no longer credible, then the leverage the provision of aid afforded that government is lost. So long as the Palestinians believe that Israel will never cut off its support for Fatah and the PA security services, they will continue to sponsor terror and collaborate with Hamas and other terror groups without fear.

So long as LAF officers and soldiers believe that Hizbullah's threat to attack the LAF is more credible than the US's stated willingness to end its support for the Lebanese military, the LAF will continue to openly support war against Israel and collaborate with Hizbullah.

Proof that a state's ability to leverage its foreign aid owes entirely to the credibility of a threat to cut off that aid came earlier this month in the aftermath of UNESCO's decision to grant full state membership to "Palestine." Due to US law, the Obama administration had no choice but to cut off all US funding to UNESCO in response to the move. As a consequence, the PLO's bid to gain full membership in other UN institutions has floundered.

Not wishing to suffer UNESCO's fate, no other UN institutions are willing to repeat UNESCO's action. And so the Palestinians' great victory at UNESCO has become a Pyrrhic one.

The Obama administration never sought this outcome. As his representatives have made abundantly clear, if US President Barack Obama had the power to maintain US budgetary support for UNESCO despite its conferral of membership on "Palestine," he would have done so.

But because the law is not subject to interpretation, US leverage over the UN actually increased in the aftermath of the UNESCO vote. Recognizing that actions have consequences, other UN agencies have buried plans of granting membership to "Palestine."

Governments must give due consideration to the positions of their professional diplomats and military commanders as well as to those of allied countries when they weigh various policy options. But while doing so, legislators and policymakers must also take into account the built-in biases influencing the judgment of these professionals. Clientitis is a serious impediment to good judgment. And it is found wherever professionals are charged with building relationships, rather than achieving concrete goals.

Originally published in The Jerusalem Post.

Caroline Glick


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Sequestered cuts will decimate the Department of Defense

by Rick Moran

The automatic spending cuts triggered by the failure of the Supercommittee could "tear a seam" in defense, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said on Monday.


The so-called super committee's failure on Monday to agree on $1.2 trillion in deficit-cutting measures triggers up to $600 billion in additional defense cuts over 10 years beginning in 2013.

"If Congress fails to act over the next year, the Department of Defense will face devastating, automatic, across-the-board cuts that will tear a seam in the nation's defense," Panetta said in a statement.

"The half-trillion in additional cuts demanded by sequester would lead to a hollow force incapable of sustaining the missions it is assigned."

Republicans have vowed to prevent automatic cuts from hitting the military. Republican Representative Buck McKeon, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, announced on Monday he would introduce legislation to prevent the military cuts from taking effect.

President Barack Obama, accusing Republicans of scuttling the committee's efforts by refusing to consider tax increases on the wealthy, said he would veto any effort to bypass the automatic trigger.

Panetta said he backed Obama's "call for Congress to avoid an easy way out of this crisis. Congress cannot simply turn off the sequester mechanism, but instead must pass deficit reduction at least equal to the $1.2 trillion it was charged to pass."

That $600 billion is in addition to the $450 billion already cut from defense when Robert Gates was secretary. This isn't just a question of eliminating new weapons systems or wasteful spending. The money will come from core Pentagon programs dealing with readiness, and benefits for current and retired military.

It is shocking to think that the president and Democrats in congress would allow these cuts to go forward. But unless a sizable number of Democrats step forward and defy Obama's veto by overriding it in congress, the cuts will become real - and so will our vulnerability.

Rick Moran


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Egypt in Turmoil

by Roni Drukan

As Egypt approaches its first post-revolution elections on November 28th, Tahrir Square is on fire again.

Violent clashes erupted as protesters demand the Military Council step down and hand over authority to a civilian body. Feeling the revolution has gone sour, protestors want to see some change.

Arab Spring revolutions have already granted power to Islamists across the Middle East. It made the Muslim Brotherhood the main political force in Tunisia, Egypt, and now in Syria. After years of focusing on charity and social work, the Muslim Brotherhood senses that it is the right time to go into politics and is acting accordingly.

Years of experience give the radical Muslim Brotherhood an edge. Access to devoted religious crowds is yet another advantage. But as these are the first free elections in Egypt, no one knows how the Egyptians will behave.

The people’s frustration from the slow pace of change in Egypt is the burning fuel, and the Brotherhood only had to light one match to blow everything up. The Brotherhood has been busy overseeing one last effort to convince people to go out and vote. The campaign includes evening prayers, a ready crowd, religious fanatics’ chants and marches.

With the military council controlling Egypt, little reform was achieved after the removal of Mubarak. The evident rift between the Military Council and the people of Tahrir Square cannot be ignored. Religious tensions and clashes add to the feeling that the revolution has gone off track.

As protesters clash with the army representing the Military Council, Tahrir Square returns to revolutionary chaos again. In an effort to restore calm before the elections, the cabinet offered its resignation on Monday to Egypt’s transitional military rulers.

Realizing the riots endanger the elections, the Muslim Brotherhood has pulled out of planned demonstrations, saying in a statement that it did not want to be involved in a protest that might delay the elections and thus the transition to democracy. But this may be too little and too late.

The US policy towards the Muslim Brotherhood is highly forgiving. It has recently changed its attitude toward the Islamic group and is also expecting a victory for the Muslim Brotherhood in the upcoming elections. The United States gives $2 billion annually to Egypt in military and economic aid in exchange for its peace treaty with Israel. Will this peace treaty hold once the Muslim Brotherhood is in control?

Free elections require stability and calm. Free elections cannot be held with millions protesting and clashing with military forces.

Egypt needs to rebuild, and to do that it needs a strong secular governing body. Involving religious and political inspirations will only drive Egypt towards Sharia law and chaos.

Sadly, in the first battle between the Military Council and the Islamists, it seems that the army has lost. Egyptians may have free democratic elections. But if they choose the Muslim Brotherhood they will not live in a free democratic state afterward.

Roni Drukan


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Israel and the Existential Threat

by Herbert I. London

For a variety of reasons, including a misguided infatuation with soft power, neither the United States nor Israel has exercised the legitimate right of anticipatory, or pre-emptive, self defense against Iran. As a result, Iran's entry into the nuclear club is almost a given. In Israel, a nation already targeted for annihilation; self defense is limited to contingency plans, active defense and deterrence. However, neither is perfect.

Contingency plans make sense when preemption is an option. Should there be an attack on Israel, retaliation is the only option. Active defense is useful since it can confuse the planning of the enemy, but it is impossible to know how many missiles will penetrate defenses in the chaos of war. Further, deterrence is workable only if Iran is unwilling to risk the loss of life. If a theological scenario enters the nuclear equation, the prospective loss of innocent life may not serve as an effective deterrent. It may well be, however, that Iranian commentary about a nuclear conflagration as a prelude for the return of the Mahdi has rhetorical, not practical, application.The problem is: no one knows.

In its latest report, 2011, the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) "remains concerned about the possible existence in Iran of past or current undisclosed nuclear related activities involving military-related organizations." Survival, then, would be largely dependent on missile defense from Arrow and Aegis destroyers. These if Israel thinks these systems might not be sufficient

Certainly Israel would like to avoid these contingencies and rely instead on US intelligence, or if that fails, to destroy Iran's nuclear sites. At the moment, the U.S. seems resigned to an Iran with nuclear weapons. The Obama administration either believes Iran is not a serious threat or that a policy of "containment" might work, or that sanctions will, at some point, so damage the Iranian economy that deployment would be rendered impossible.. With Germany, Switzerland, China and Russia all violating the sanctions regimen with no adverse consequences whatever,, this hardly seems a viable course of action.

A nuclear Iran may be unthinkable, as every leader from Obama to Sarkozy, has noted. But action does not necessarily follow a promise. President Bush argued that his presidency would be deemed a failure if he left office and Iran had nuclear weapons.

A nuclearized Iran would be a threat to European capitals and a long term threat to the U.S. but it is a clear and present threat now not only to Israel but also to the oil-rich countries in the region. It is the shadow that blocks Saudi, Kuwaiti, Iraqi, Emirati and Israeli sunlight.

In Israel, there are other issues, including the Palestinian question; yet there is only one existential issue: the Iranian nuclear threat -- whether it is six months, one year or several years away from completion.

Israeli batteries at the Iron Dome and Arrow facilities remain confident. They have every reason to feel this way. The troops are strong and their devotion to the security of the Israeli people is unshakable. Still there are always the unknowns: penetration ratios, effectiveness in battle, unpredictable conditions. Every commander, however, during a recent trip to Israel, expressed the belief that the nation will do whatever is necessary to protect the State of Israel. There it always feels as if God is nearby Despite the destruction of the First Temple and the attempt by the Romans to destroy the Second Temple, the Jewish people managed to prevail. As one Israeli officer said to the comment Iran could have the means to destroy Israel: "Never again! Need I say more?"

Herbert I. London is president emeritus of Hudson Institute, senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and author of the book Decline and Revival in Higher Education (Transaction Books).


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The Islamist-Environmentalist Alliance

by Daniel Greenfield

Saudi Arabia has no better friend than the Sierra Club, and the Emirates have no better salesmen than the environmentalists who keep the country hooked on conflict oil. The administration’s sabotage of the Keystone XL project through delays aimed at killing the pipeline is a cynical act of cowardice, and it’s a shot in the arm to the very regimes that it claims to oppose.

The Islamist Spring has mainly hit Arab governments without a huge oil industry, leaving them dependent on patronage, whether from the United States in the case of Egypt, or Iran in the case of Syria. The economic downturn tightened belts and drove mobs into the streets where Islamists and socialists funneled them into anti-government rallies for their own benefit.

Qatar has been smugly stirring up trouble for the rest of the region through Al-Jazeera and laughing at its enemies from behind a shield of oil barrels and Western public relations firms. Libya, the one oil power to fall to the Islamists, would have still been ruled by its cross-dressing madman if NATO aircraft and special forces had not come to the rescue of the Al-Qaeda-linked Libyan Islamic Fighting Group.

Saudi Arabia has an even bigger stack of oil barrels, and on top of that black pyramid is a degenerate royal family wearing crowns of terrorism and tyranny. Iran has its own pyramid with hanging women dangling off it and the corpses of murdered student protesters floating in the crude. And if the environmentalists really cared about any of that, at least to the extent of wanting to end the wars, then they would be laying a pipeline that would funnel money out of the House of Saud and the Mullahs back to the United States of America.

Instead billions have been poured into the People’s Republic of China, which lends us the money to pay for the solar and wind power components that we buy from them, and after the handful of watts from green power have been exhausted to spread joy and peace across parts of Vermont and Oregon, the country goes back with hat in hand to the grinning petroleum plutocracies.

No activist group in America has promoted the growth of tyranny around the world the way that the environmentalist movement has. Every time drilling equipment stands idle because it might endanger the home of the spotted purple mock warbler or the congealed nanny state lizard, the cash registers and card readers in the malls of Dubai ring in another payday.

What matters more, the lives of the thousands and tens of thousands of people being ground under by Islamic regimes fueled by oil money, or theoretical harm to the sub-species of a sub-species that no one had ever heard of until it became a convenient way to stop a project that might actually make driving a car a little more affordable?

The myth of the Arab Spring has made the left a little too smug about its opposition to the war, but the only oil nation on the list that fell only did so through American military intervention. If they want reform in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf outposts where a degenerate native population lives off oil revenues and slave labor, then it will take a much larger war.

Choosing between the tyrants and the Islamists is like flipping a coin between the Ebola virus and the Black Plague; whichever way the coin falls it won’t be pretty. But if there wasn’t quite so much oil money at stake, the Islamists wouldn’t be as interested, and the petroleum daddies who finance their projects would be kept busy selling trinkets to tourists by the side of the road.

The tyrants would still be around, but with one hand out for money they wouldn’t be all that much of a threat. It’s no coincidence that the craziest and most vicious tyrants in the Middle East are found squatting on the dirty thrones of oil regimes. Compare Saddam, the Ayatollahs, Gaddafi and the House of Saud to Mubarak or the Jordanian monarchy. Even Assad’s violent tantrums are brought to you by the oil wells of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Environmentalists agree with most of this, knowingly nod their heads and go back to singing the praises of green jobs. Their solution is to cut the flow of money by forcing Americans to cut back and investing in high cost and low efficiency alternative energy programs. Even if their approach were moral and legal, which it is not, it would still be a hopeless failure. Even expensive oil will beat even more expensive green power, and fighting political tyranny abroad by implementing it at home is no solution.

Every time environmentalists kill a project in America, they revive it overseas with less oversight, more pollution and without the human rights. The death of Keystone XL means more pollution in China and war in the Middle East. Crusading environmentalists helped kill America’s industries and kept the regime in Beijing alive. The tanks that rolled over the democracy protesters in Tiananmen Square were as green as their environmentalist backers. Both of them painted in the resplendent color of American money.

Islam’s second act was funded by the same policies that gave the People’s Republic an opportunity to transform its population into our non-EPA, non-union and no minimum wage workforce. And the petrodollars still keep pumping out of the United States and into the regimes funding the growing Islamic sphere of influence. A sphere that is moving to enclose us.

The ANWAR drilling that never happened was money that went into arming and training a new generation of Al-Qaeda recruits, into firing Hamas rockets at Israeli schools and filling the pockets of the Revolutionary Guards commanders in Iran. Every time another resource development project dies, another Mullah gets his suicide squad wings.

Environmentalists claim that they are safeguarding our natural resources, but who are they safeguarding them for? Do they imagine that the Environmental States of America will be a thousand year entity that will go on fighting for the red misaligned hoopoe even as the sphere of Islamist influence spreads across the world?

Someone will drill in ANWAR and South Dakota and run pipelines down out of Canada. It might be us, but it doesn’t have to be. If we keep turning dollars into petrodollars, then the Saudi-funded mosques will go on flowing like an oil spill across the continent until the Koran replaces the Constitution. The new Islamic States of America will have strict policies on unaccompanied women, unsigned cartoons and unmarked infidels, but it will have no objection to drilling anywhere the black gold on which it built its influence can be found.

We don’t have to build platforms in the Gulf or Frak for shale oil. All we have to do is wait around for those who will. And those dark bubbles will be the final wages of the environmentalist-Islamist alliance.

Daniel Greenfield


Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Bill Seeks Terror Designation for Flotilla Groups

by IPT News

A bill introduced in Congress would ask Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to submit a report determining whether organizations that participated in a failed flotilla to Gaza in July should be designated as a foreign terrorist organization.

The bill, offered last month by Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla., and co-sponsored by a bipartisan group of 12 others, notes that a United Nations investigation into a previous flotilla effort says that Israel's maritime blockade of Gaza is legal. "Israel's blockade [on Gaza] is acknowledged by the United States as necessary and legal given Hamas' control of Gaza, intention to secure greater weaponry for aggressive purposes and open desire to destroy Israel," the bill says.

Greece prohibited the departure of Freedom Flotilla II to the Gaza Strip this summer. The bill also asks that the State Department report "express support and gratitude" to Greece for thwarting the flotilla.

"Recent past history has suggested that the sole intent of the flotillas is to provoke an Israeli military response in the international waters of the eastern Mediterranean Sea," the bill says. The first flotilla in May 2010 was organized by a coalition of international organizations including the Islamist Turkish organization IHH and the Free Gaza Movement. Nine passengers died after leaders of the IHH-owned Mavi Marmara ship launched a premeditated attack on Israeli commandos who tried to enforce the blockade on Gaza. Commandos boarded the ship following repeated warnings, and were immediately attacked by knives, axes, hammers and other weapons.

The CIA and U.S. Treasury Department have determined IHH and the Free Gaza Movement "have known terrorist ties," the bill says.

The Investigative Project on Terrorism has documented IHH's extensive terrorist ties. In July 2010, a spokesman said State is considering designating IHH as a terrorist organization.

Organizers of the summer flotilla admitted that their efforts were not simply humanitarian but "about freedom for Palestinians in Gaza and the rest of the occupied Palestinian territories." In November, two boats that were part of the flotilla departed Turkey in another failed attempt to reach the Gaza Strip. Huwaida Arraf, the board chair of the Free Gaza Movement said last month that "we will keep coming, wave after wave, by air, sea, and land, to challenge Israel's illegal policies towards Gaza and all of Palestine. Our movement will not stop or be stopped until Palestine is free."

IPT News


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CAIR’s Campaign Against the Truth

by Joseph Klein

The Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated Council on American-Islamic Relations (“CAIR”) is continuing its relentless pressure on federal and local elected officials to suppress the truth about the radical Islamist agenda and the dangers posed by homegrown jihadists.

The latest example is CAIR’s campaign, announced on November 15th, 2011, in which fifteen of its chapters nationwide have filed 87 separate public records requests regarding alleged “Islamophobic” training of local, state and national law enforcement personnel. CAIR said it was seeking information about state-level programs that may have used federal taxpayer dollars to fund what it called “anti-Muslim trainers.”

CAIR as usual is turning the truth on its head. It accuses its opponents of the very hate speech that is CAIR’s own normal lingo.

CAIR’s Los Angeles California branch issued a press release regarding the alleged Islamophobic training that it is seeking to de-fund. The Communications Manager of CAIR’s Los Angeles, California branch is Munira Syeda, whose name appears on the press release. She evidently believes in freedom of speech for her organization’s point of view, but not for contrary points of view.

For example, Syeda defended the actions of a group apparently belonging to the radical Muslim Student Union, who were found guilty of disrupting a speech given by Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren. Ambassador Oren was speaking about U.S.-Israel relations in February 2010 at the University of California, Irvine when the instigators stood up in succession, shouting epithets such as “killers” and asking, “How many Palestinians did you kill?” They persisted in their loud heckling, despite calls to behave from campus officials. This was not about exercising the right of free speech. The Muslim students would have had an opportunity to ask pointed questions or make their statements during the Q&A session that was scheduled to follow the speech. It was about disruptive conduct aimed at censoring others’ right to freely speak, listen and exchange ideas, in violation of California law.

The CAIR Communications Manager supported this “heckler’s veto” when used to shout down attempts by representatives and supporters of Israel to communicate. But she has no problem trying to quash peaceful, non-disruptive protests against Islamist events where violent jihadist sympathizers are speaking.

For instance, Syeda condemned a rally protesting an Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) fundraiser held at the Yorba Linda City Council Community Center in Orange County, California last February. One of the speakers at the ICNA fundraiser was an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center attack, Siraj Wahhaj, who was once quoted as saying to an audience of Muslims in New Jersey, “[T]ake my word, if 6-8 million Muslims unite in America, the country will come to us.” He has also reportedly talked in the past about violent jihad, complete with references to arming black ex-cons in the inner cities with Uzis. Another speaker, Malik Ali, had been captured at one point on video inciting Muslim university students with these words: “They [Jews] know this is a new day. … What do we do? Might be another 9/11.”

There was good reason for some members of the Orange County community to be upset by the prospect of such hatemongers speaking in their city council community center. But they did nothing to interfere with the speeches. According to The Orange County Register, many in the crowd of protesters waved U.S. flags and carried signs saying, “God Bless America” and “No Sharia Law.” A small number of protesters stood about fifty yards from the community center entrance. They booed, yelled “go home” and chanted “no Sharia law” as attendees entered the building. Among their signs were ones that said “ICNA supports Hamas and Hezbollah.” Nobody was reported to have actually entered the community center and disrupt any of the speeches, as the Muslim students had done during Israeli Ambassador Oren’s speech.

One of the most vociferous of the protesters was Councilwoman and Republican Party Vice Chair Deborah Pauly, who was particularly upset with the two violent jihadist sympathizers on the ICNA guest speaker list. She told protesters rallying outside of the Islamic Circle of North America fundraiser: “Let me tell you what’s going on over there right now – make no bones about it – that is pure, unadulterated evil. … I know quite a few Marines who would be very happy to help these terrorists to an early meeting in paradise.”

Strong, even offensive, words – yes. But they were delivered outside the event being protested and involved no heckling of ICNA speakers inside the hall.

Nevertheless, CAIR-LA and other Islamist groups sought to have the councilwoman officially censored by the city council for simply expressing her opinion. Other than conceding that some of the speakers at the ICNA fundraiser were “controversial,” the CAIR-LA Communications Manager Munira Syeda reserved her criticism for the protesters.

CAIR wants a veto against politicians and their supporters who dare to strongly, but peacefully, protest a radical Islamist event outside of the event venue. At the same time, CAIR defends the anti-Israel Muslim Student Union hecklers’ veto, exercised inside the event venue by interfering with the Israeli ambassador’s right to deliver his speech to an audience that wanted to hear what he had to say without rude interruptions.

This same double standard underlies CAIR’s campaign to block federal and local elected officials from incorporating into their law enforcement training programs the truth about the radical Islamist agenda and the dangers posed by homegrown jihadists. CAIR is looking for a veto over who should be allowed to train law enforcement personnel and what should be taught. It wants no expert critics of Islamists and their anti-American agenda to participate in training programs that are supposed to educate law enforcement personnel about the ideological source of some of the real security dangers they are facing. CAIR is particularly afraid of someone like Nonie Darwish, who grew up in a strict Muslim home in Egypt and lived the first thirty years of her life under the yoke of sharia law.

The Obama administration and local enforcement agencies are succumbing to the Islamists’ pressure. Indeed, instead of learning the truth, law enforcement personnel are beginning to be spoon-fed the Islamists’ propaganda. For example, in Tulsa, Oklahoma recently, a police officer was punished for refusing to attend a mandatory Muslim prayer session that was supposed to help him understand Islam!

Here is a better suggestion for helping law enforcement personnel to learn about Islamic ideology, which goes beyond exposing them to Muslim religious prayers and other faith rituals. How about, as a start, requiring law enforcement personnel to familiarize themselves with the member handbook of the Islamic Circle of North America – the Islamist group which had invited violent jihadist sympathizers to speak at its California fundraiser?

The handbook proves the critics’ case, but perhaps its illustration of the Islamists’ supremacist caliphate message would be far more believable if communicated directly to the law enforcement personnel by the communications manager of CAIR’s Los Angeles, California branch herself, Munira Syeda. CAIR would have a much more difficult time dismissing, with its usual kill-the-messenger accusations of Islamophobia, what its own communications manager reads directly from the handbook.

Here are a few excerpts from the ICNA handbook to help her get started:

“The Islamic Circle of North America is…an organization struggling towards Iqamat-ad-Deen in this land… a national Islamic movement”

“‘Islamic movement’ is the term used for that organized and collective effort waged to establish Al-Islam in its complete form in all aspects of life. (Emphasis added)

“The following are some characteristics of the Islamic movement as we learn about it from the model of the Prophet Mohammad.

1) This movement is based on the ideology of Islam. It considers humanity as one family based upon our common parents and common Creator. Therefore, it addresses all human beings, regardless of their race, color, national origin, language, culture, ethnicity or economic status. It wants everyone to succeed before Allah. Its message is, ‘Oh Mankind, submit to your Lord who created you’ (2:21). (Emphasis added)

2) It considers disobedience to Allah as the root cause of all human problems. Moreover, it believes that obedience to Allah is the only solution for all human ills. Until the human being submits to Allah’s Guidance, there can be no true peace in our lives. (Emphasis added)

3) It believes that human beings are overburdened under the obedience of other human beings and their oppressive systems. It is only the obedience of Allah that will set everyone free… (Emphasis added

Wherever the Islamic movement succeeds to establish true Islamic society, they will form coalition and alliances. This will lead to the unity of the Ummah and towards the establishment of the Khilafah [the Caliphate].” (Emphasis added)

In addition to a reading from the Islamic Circle of North America handbook, the law enforcement training programs could include an expert in Islamic law such as Dr. Muzammil Siddiqi, a CAIR and ICNA favorite who also was invited to the White House by President George W. Bush in the days following 9/11.

Dr. Siddiqi is the former president of the Islamic Society of North America, the Saudi-funded organization that is used by the Muslim World League to finance and exercise control over most of the mosques in the United States. Dr. Siddiqi is currently the chairman of the executive council of the Fiqh Council of North America, an association of Muslims who interpret Islamic law on the North American continent.

What better expert is there to speak about sharia law and the Islamist ideology than Dr. Siddiqi? Apparently, the Chief of the Los Angeles Police Department thinks so, since he is planning a law enforcement “education” program at the Islamic Center with Siddiqi.

But this can only work if Dr. Siddiqi goes beyond the feel good rhetoric of inter-faith harmony that he likes to use when addressing Western audiences. He has to explain how the nice-sounding resolution passed this September by his Fiqh Council claiming that there is “no inherent conflict between the normative values of Islam and the US Constitution and Bill of Rights” (at least “so long as there is no conflict with Muslims’ obligation for obedience” to Allah) squares with some of his teachings about the rule of Allah over all aspects of our lives, Islamist notions of tolerance and supremacism, and the need to implement sharia law everywhere.

All this learned Islamic scholar has to do is elaborate on past statements attributed to him, such as the following:

  • “We must not forget that Allah’s rules have to be established in all lands, and all our efforts should lead to that direction.”
  • “Our work, school, athletics activity, family life, economics, politics everything must be according to Allah’s Rules.”
  • “It is true that Islam stands for the sovereignty of Allah the Almighty and Allah’s rules are not limited to the acts of worship, they also include social, economic and political matters.”
  • “Tolerance according to Islam does not mean that we believe that all religions are the same. It does not mean that we do not believe in the supremacy of Islam over other faiths and ideologies.”
  • “Once more people accept Islam, insha’allah, this will lead to the implementation of Sharia in all areas.”

Of course, the last thing CAIR would want to do is persuade Dr. Siddiqi to own up to his own real beliefs as part of educating law enforcement personnel about Islamist ideology, or to recommend the inclusion of documents such as the ICNA handbook as part of the training curriculum. Instead, it cries Islamophobia in its relentless campaign to suppress the truth.

It is time that the spotlight is focused on CAIR itself and other Islamist groups which are pulling out all stops to impede effective law enforcement training and replace it with false, self-serving propaganda.

Joseph Klein


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