Wednesday, July 30, 2014

In Leaked Tape, Hostile Obama Tries to Force PM to Accept Truce

by Ari Soffer

[Editor: Please note that "United States' Ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro, has emphatically rejected the authenticity" of the conversation that is described below. Hmmmm - Is it possible that the Obama administration would, shall we say, stretch the truth to avoid exposing the Pres as an arrogant and contemptuous bully ?  Just asking---  Oh - and Israel now denies that the conversation took place too. Have some arms been twisted?]

US president markedly unfriendly, interrupted prime minister as he attempted to push unfavorable truce on Israel.

Damning evidence has emerged of US President Barack Obama's dismissal of Israel's position in favor of supporting the position of Hamas and its allies during ceasefire talks.

A "senior US official" leaked an audio recording of a telephone conversation between Obama and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to Channel One. In it the 35-minute conversation, which took place on Sunday, the US President appears downright hostile at points, and even cuts off Netanyahu in the middle of his protestations over a one-sided truce proposal which would have seen Hamas receive all its key demands, but that Israel ultimately rejected.

The following is an excerpt of the conversation, published in Hebrew by Channel One:

Obama: I demand that Israel agrees to an immediate, unilateral ceasefire and halt all offensive activities - particularly airstrikes.

Netanyahu: What will Israel receive in return for a ceasefire?

Obama: I believe that Hamas will stop firing rockets - silence will be met with silence.

Netanyahu: Hamas violated all five previous ceasefires, it is a terrorist organization which is dedicated to the destruction of Israel.

Obama: I repeat and expect Israel to unilaterally stop all its military activity. The pictures of destruction from Gaza distance the world from Israel's position.

Netanyahu: Kerry's proposal was completely unrealistic and gives Hamas the military and diplomatic advantage.

Obama: Within a week of the end of Israel's military activities, Qatar and Turkey will begin negotiations with Hamas on the basis of the 2012 understanding [following the end of Operation Pillar of Defense - ed.], including Israel's commitment to removing the siege and restrictions on Gaza,

Netanyahu: Qatar and Turkey are the biggest supporters of Hamas. It is impossible to rely on them to be fair mediators.

Obama: I trust Qatar and Turkey, and Israel is in no position to choose its mediators.

Netanyahu: I object, because Hamas is able to continue and to fire rockets and to use tunnels for terror attacks...

Obama - interrupts Netanyahu mid-sentence: The ball is in Israel's court - it is obligated to end all military activities. 

The Channel One journalist who received the tape emphasized that at other points during the conversation there were more "positive" word exchanged between the two, such as Obama repeating America's commitment to Israel's security.

But those words will ring hollow to Israelis, considering that the proposal put together by John Kerry, Qatar and Turkey did not address a single one of Israel's demands and - as alluded to by Obama himself - relied on little more than the goodwill of Hamas to stop firing rockets. This, despite the group (which the US itself lists as a terrorist organization) being unabashedly committed to the destruction of the State of Israel and the genocide of all Israeli Jews.

For his part, earlier on Tuesday John Kerry claimed that Prime Minister Netanyahu had in fact approached him to ask him to help hammer out a ceasefire deal, after previous truce proposals were rejected by Hamas.

Ari Soffer


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The Real Reason

by Rabbi Dr. David Nessenoff

When my great grandmother Dvosyah, for whom I am named David, was shot and killed and thrown into a ditch in Babi Yar, it was not because the Nazis wanted her land. It was because they wanted her dead. And they wanted her dead because she was Jewish and the Nazis were anti-Semites; they were simply anti-Jewish.

Throughout Jewish history there were those who wanted the Jew dead - not because of any reason other than they wanted the Jew dead. It’s all about anti-Semitism; it’s always been about anti-Semitism. And with regard to modern day history and the present current events of Israel, it is only about anti-Semitism – anti-Jewish hate.

What is the reason for all this anti-Jewish hatred? And was there a different reason during the times of the destruction of the First Temple as compared to the reason during the time of the Spanish inquisition? And was there another reason during the Holocaust, and another reason when Israeli athletes were slaughtered at the Munich Olympics? And what was the reason the Fogel family was butchered while they slept on the Sabbath?

The Lubavitcher Rebbe, who advised heads of state, military generals, rabbis, brides, grooms, mothers and fathers – explained that there is one reason for anti-Semitism and there has always been one reason, the same reason.

Jews are the recipients of Torah; the Jews brought the book of morality into this world. In more familiar terms, the Jew “ruined the party.” The Torah introduced into the world a code of decency. Everyone knows this; and some are upset by it.

If this is not evident from the present glee the Hamas terrorists, and citizens of Gaza, have at the killing of Israeli teenagers and Jewish soldiers, it is made crystal clear by the reporting being proliferated by certain news services. For instance, CNN, MSNBC, BBC, Sky News, Al Jazeera and the New York Times – to name a few – carpet bomb their moral equivalency comparison between the Children of Israel’s army and the blood thirsty Hamas terrorists.

There is an emphatic race to question the moral judgments of the people who brought this morality concept down from Mount Sinai. And with a quick draw and a gloated smirk, the line is protracted to happily display the Jew as having lower morals than even the terrorist. The main story being broadcast about this conflict is that of the Jew killing children. And that is anti-Semitism.

The proliferation of rioting and violence against Jews in Europe today has nothing to do with any morsel of land; it’s about anti-Semitism. The boycotts, UN condemnations, Iranian nuclear proliferation, Turkey’s flotilla and French money to Gaza - the list goes on – it’s only about anti-Semitism. (And conversely, by the way, those who support Israel do not do so because of real estate; they are simply in favor of morality and truth.)

The anti-Semite says: We hate the Jew for his moral barometer and we will kill him for it; and at the same time, we will also endeavor to prove that he doesn’t have a moral barometer and kill him for it. And therefore morality is killed as well; then we can misbehave without feeling that any laws of decency are being broken.

What the world really needs to know is that the morality brought into this world at Mount Sinai from G-d’s Torah is the same morality that exists in Israel today with the decision to risk the lives of Israel’s own ground soldiers in order to save the lives of children and innocent civilians in Gaza. The incredible highest level of decency and morality of the Children of Israel still shines as a beacon to the world.

That is the army of Torah, which conducts itself in such a fashion. Morality is not the easy way; it is often times difficult and dangerous, but it is the only way for the Children of Israel. They are not the “Chosen People” but rather the “People who have no choice.” They have no option but to follow their Torah’s ethical codes, principled judgments and moral directives and statutes. And they have and will be misunderstood, criticized, hated and even killed for their adherence to that code of moral behavior.

It’s all about anti-Semitism. The anti-Semitic Nazis had to scour Europe to collect six million Jews and invent macabre contraptions to slaughter them. Today six million Jews live in one small spot and the anti-Semite needs only to lob bombs over them and tunnel under them.

How can one possibly negotiate that term, anti-Semitism, into a sustainable ceasefire and lasting peace? Land is easy to negotiate; but the real everlasting treaty must include the complete genocide of the Jewish people in order to satisfy the anti-Semite. They want to negotiate morality out of this world, so they can live in a place devoid of principles and decency; and they desperately want to erase all evidence of those Jews who carried that sacred ark into Jerusalem filled with the rule of universal law.

And so my great grandmother, Devosya, lies in that Babi Yar grave with 100,000 other decent souls. She cries and pleads, along with all the victims who were slaughtered in Europe and in the sacred Land of Israel – it’s not about the land. It’s about anti-Semitism.

May the souls of our murdered loved ones, and our brave fallen soldiers, be a blessing and a reminder about what this battle is truly about. It is a fight for decency. Each one of us should enforce our efforts to do the Mitzvot that were given to us in that sacred Scroll of Morality. Tfillin, Shabbat candles, Tzedakah and all Mitzvot need to be enlisted and called up to service immediately by all of us in order to assist the Israel Defense Forces in eradicating anti-Semitism and recapturing truth and goodness.

Rabbi Dr. David Nesenoff is an internationally renowned speaker on Israel, anti-Semitism, Judaism, Chasidut and media. His video interview exposing and expelling the anti-Semite Helen Thomas from the Washington Press Corps went viral and became global news.


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Gaza Flotilla Terrorists Set Sail Again

by Arnold Ahlert

mavi marmara

Apparently more than willing to pour gasoline on an already raging fire, an anti-Israeli Turkish relief organization, IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation, is organizing a “Freedom Flotilla II” to bring “humanitarian” supplies to the Gaza strip. The IHH is the organization responsible for the last attempt to break the Israeli naval blockade of Gaza in a self-inflicted disaster that saw nine Hamas-affiliated terrorists killed by Israeli commandos, who were attacked when they attempted to board the Mavi Marmara. IHH chairman Bulent Yildrim warns that this time, the flotilla will be accompanied by Turkish Navy vessels to “protect us from any potential attack.”
As of now, no firm date has been set for this latest effort to incite a violent confrontation with the Jewish State, but Yildrim insists that once the necessary permit from the authorities in Ankara is approved, the activists will set sail. Yildrim is inviting activists who participated in the 2010 trip to join the cause. The military component is based on a demand by Yildrim  that the Turkish government provide protection for its own citizens.

The move reflects the increasing deterioration of Turkish-Israeli relations, already severely damaged by the 2010 attempt by the Freedom Flotilla I to challenge Israel’s right to block weaponry from entering the Gaza strip.

After the incident aboard the Mavi Marmara, a 2011 UN report by the Palmer Commission concluded Israel was within its legal rights to form the blockade. The report further noted that the naval blockade “was imposed as a legitimate security measure in order to prevent weapons from entering Gaza by sea and its implementation complied with the requirements of international law,” that “the flotilla acted recklessly in attempting to breach the naval blockade,” and that there were “serious questions about the conduct, true nature and objectives of the flotilla organizers, particularly IHH.”

And while the report also concluded that Israel’s boarding of the Mavi Marmara was “excessive and unreasonable,” it noted that “Israeli Defense Forces personnel faced significant, organized and violent resistance from a group of passengers when they boarded the Mavi Marmara requiring them to use force for their own protection.” The panel further recommended that those involved “should consult directly and make every effort to avoid a repetition of the incident.”

That isn’t likely to happen. After the incident and subsequent report, Turkey ejected Israel’s ambassador and recalled its own, but refrained from severing economic ties. But on July 19, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused Israel of “barbarism that surpasses Hitler,” regarding its military incursion into Gaza. He further insisted the Jewish State was guilty of using “disproportionate force” that has “derailed efforts to normalize Turkish-Israeli ties,” according to the Associated Press. Erdogan is running for the presidency in elections that will be held next month.
In an interview with The Jerusalem Post, Harold Rhode, a senior fellow at the New-York-based Gatestone Institute and a former adviser on Islamic affairs in the office of the American secretary of defense, insisted that the “real issue” in the current conflict is the effort by Turkey and Qatar to throw their support behind the Muslim Brotherhood and its spawn, Hamas. “Erdogan has been associated with the Muslim Brotherhood long before he was prime minister,” Rhode said further explaining that Erdogan “is doing whatever he can to help Hamas.”

One could make the case the Obama administration is doing the same thing. According to the Times of Israel that nation’s unanimous rejection of Secretary of State John Kerry’s cease fire plan was so ferocious, it was kept quiet in order to avoid “an open diplomatic confrontation with the United States.”

Kerry followed up that visit with one to Paris, where he talked with representatives of none other than Qatar and Turkey, while representatives from Israel, the PLO and Egypt remained uninvited to the table. That would be the same Qatar and Turkey that Israel TV Channel 2’s Middle East analyst Ehud Ya’ari referred to as “Hamas’s lawyers,” and the same nation of Qatar that signed an $11 billion arms deal with the Obama administration that will provide them with Apache attack helicopters, as well as Patriot and Javelin air-defense systems.

Last Friday, Deputy State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf insisted Kerry’s regular contact with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu was necessary because Davutoğlu “is a key player in the region and has some leverage he can bring to bear on the situation. They have a relationship with Hamas. I mean, they can, you know, have conversations that we can’t.”

What conversations are those? On Twitter, Davutoğlu stated that he would talk to “Palestinian parties with the aim of ensuring that merciless attacks targeting our Palestinian brothers come to an immediate end.”

Two days later, the Obama administration disputed the idea that Kerry was pushing a Gaza cease fire plan promoted by Qatar and Turkey. An administration spokesman also disputed the notion that Kerry’s rejected plan was a formal proposal, characterizing it as a draft framework presented for Israeli input and commentary.

President Obama demonstrated an equal amount of contempt for the realities of an Israeli nation that must not only deal with a missile threat exacerbated by a new secret arms deal between Hamas and North Korea, but a system of tunnels so extensive and sophisticated, they represent an existential threat to Israel’s survival. In a phone call to Netanyahu, Obama called for “an immediate, unconditional humanitarian ceasefire that ends hostilities now and leads to a permanent cessation of hostilities.” The White House further revealed that the president “reiterated the United States’ serious and growing concern about the rising number of Palestinian civilian deaths and the loss of Israeli lives, as well as the worsening humanitarian situation in Gaza.”

In other words, the Obama administration couldn’t care less about leaving Israel completely vulnerable to a tunnel system that could render the Iron Dome, the nation’s most effective defensive weapon, obsolete. On Monday, a senior IDF official claimed Israel was in possession of  all the attack tunnels, but that contention was disputed by Hamas spokesman Mushir al-Masri who claimed Israel has reached “only a fraction” of them. “We are convinced that our people are on the brink of liberation,” Masri added.

It is a liberation that IHH intends to facilitate with the possible aid of the Turkish government—and perhaps Obama’s blessing as well. Among the Kerry proposals that reportedly “horrified” the Israeli Cabinet, aside from the idea that Israel accept Hamas’s demands for the opening of border crossings into Gaza, and the opening of a post-war funding channel for Hamas (while the vast network of terror tunnels with exits located in Israel was ignored) was the construction of a Gazan seaport.

The maliciousness of such an idea cannot be overstated. When Israel unilaterally ceded Gaza to the Palestinians in 2005, it signed an Agreement on Movement and Access with the Palestinian Authority. It gave the Palestinians full control over their borders, permitting imports and exports, and included an approval for building a seaport. It was only after Hamas launch a murderous coup against the PLO in 2007 that Israel—as well as Egypt–reimposed border restrictions aimed at keeping the U.S.-designated terrorist group from arming itself. The naval blockade was reinstated, and its necessity was made evident as recently as last March. That’s when Israel seized a ship carrying M-302 surface-to-surface missiles that were flown to Iran from Syria before being loaded aboard the ship headed for Gaza. At the time the IDF revealed this was not the first arms-smuggling ship it had intercepted, but one “distinguished by the lethality and quality of its cargo.”

That reality apparently did nothing to dissuade the Obama administration. During a joint appearance with Kerry last week, Khalid bin Mohamed al-Attiyah of Qatar insisted Gaza “deserves” its own seaport, even “if it’s under international supervision.” The utter impotency of such supervision was laid bare on July 18, when the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) discovered 20 Hamas-owned missiles in one of their very own Gazan schools—and returned them to Hamas two days later. Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Ron Prosor illuminated the reality of international monitoring, at least with regard to Israel. “For years, we told you about the thousands of rockets that Hamas was smuggling into Gaza,” he said. “We were met with silence. Time and again we called on the international community to condemn the rocket fire and we were met with silence.”

The silence surrounding the true nature of IHH is also deafening. Despite its self-promotion as solely a humanitarian organization, Carnegie Endowment analyst Henri Barkey illuminated its greater agenda. “It’s an Islamist organization as it has been deeply involved with Hamas for some time,” he explained. Barkey’s contention echoed a 2006 report by the Danish Institute for International Studies characterizing IHH as one of many “charitable front groups that provide support to al Qaeda” and the global jihad. France’s former top counterterrorism judge, Jean-Louis Bruguiere, noted that his own investigation of IHH in the 1990s revealed they “were basically helping al-Qaida when bin Laden started to want to target U.S. soil,” he said.

Even more important, information acquired in 2011 by Israel’s Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center (ITIC) revealed that Erdogan actively supported the first flotilla. “Without (IHH’s) support, he would not have been elected prime minister,” the ITIC report declared, further noting that a fourth of senior IHH staff members had served, or were serving, in senior position in Erdogan’s AKP political party.

Prior to the first flotilla’s interception by Israel, Yildrim made his organization’s genuine intentions clear, vowing to “break the siege,” adding if Jerusalem “will be in Muslim hands, the whole world will to be in Muslim hands…. The present rulers of Jerusalem are the Jews, the Zionists. All the suffering and the evil in the world today is a result of that. Therefore Jerusalem must be liberated.”

This is the reality behind the first attempt to break the Israeli blockade. If the Turkish Navy supports Freedom Flotilla II, war between Israel and Turkey becomes a real possibility. If such hostilities come to pass, one is left to wonder which side the Obama administration will support. Demanding that Israel cease hostilities even as Hamas retains the capability to threaten the Jewish State’s existence—and even after Israel unilaterally agreed to five cease fires Hamas either rejected or violated—sends a troubling message.

Arnold Ahlert is a former NY Post op-ed columnist currently contributing to, and He may be reached at


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No Economic Aid to Hamas-Ruled Gaza

by Prof. Efraim Inbar

Kerry in Paris
BESA Center Perspectives Paper No. 260

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The developing international consensus to offer Gaza economic aid in exchange for a ceasefire is a moral and strategic mistake. As long as Hamas rules Gaza, funds sent to Gaza are likely to be used for aggression against Israel and the personal use of Hamas leaders. The world should not be rewarding the most extreme Palestinians for violence and terror.

The developing international consensus to offer Gaza an economic package in order to convince Hamas to agree to a ceasefire is immoral and a strategic folly. It is also unlikely to be effective.

One of the main reasons for Hamas harassing several million Israelis by launching thousands of rockets and sending terrorists into Israel by tunnels, apart from the desire to kill Jews, is to rock the boat in order to get out of its dire economic conditions. Getting paid for stopping to shoot at Israeli civilians looks like the “protection money” collected by the Mafia.

The morality of pouring money into Gaza so that their civilians can live better remains questionable for as long as Hamas does not stop its terrorism against Israel. Unfortunately, establishing a clear connection between economic aid and political compliance is not on the agenda of the “peacemakers”.

It is true that Gazans are suffering. Nevertheless, it is wrong to argue that the Gazans should not suffer the consequences of Hamas’ criminal actions. Unfortunately, Hamas was popular among the Gazans and continues to be so. Moreover, all polls show that Gazans support violence against Israel. What moral justification exists for helping people that support an organization intent on destroying the Jewish state and is actively engaged in killing innocent Israeli citizens?

Furthermore, we should not forget that the essence of war is a competition of inflicting pain in order to change patterns of behavior. Actually, pain may have a positive value in affecting the learning curve of the warring sides. Israel has tried to influence the learning curve of the Palestinians that aggression against Israel does not pay and that support for Hamas could be costly.

Exacting a high cost from Hamas and the Gazans may lead them to more peaceful behavior. It is true that it is difficult to influence the learning process of large collectives, but this has occurred before. For example, it took a lot of suffering in World War I and World War II to transform German society into becoming less militaristic and less belligerent. While not politically correct, such treatment might be the recipe for turning the Palestinians into peaceful neighbors in the long run.

Moreover, economic aid to Gaza, as long as Hamas stays in control, strengthens its power and its grip over the poor Gazans. Allowing the continued rule of Hamas, as the US plans, also undermines the rule of the more moderate Palestinian Authority (PA) leader, Mahmoud Abbas. Indeed the PA also criticized the Kerry cease fire proposal that favored Hamas.

However, this clear strategic rationale seems to be taken over by sentimentalist responses to Hamas media manipulation. Instead of using the depressing pictures coming out of Gaza to tell Gazans: “We told you all along that Hamas leadership would only make things worse” (just as it has in other places where radical Islamists gain power), Western leaders seem to have foolishly decided that Gaza should speedily be rebuilt! The US efforts to bribe Hamas into behaving (while suspending aid to Egypt), are probably against American laws dealing with terrorist organizations.

Promises of aid send the wrong signal. It tells Palestinians that their leadership can make grave, deadly mistakes, and nevertheless gullible Westerners and others will bail them out. It also signals to Hamas that it can continue seeking the destruction of Israel and shooting at the Jewish State; for if Israel repeats its military action, merciful donor states will repair the damage yet again.

Diplomats are looking for formulas that will enable channeling aid to the Gaza Strip bypassing Hamas. Realistically, there is no way to reconstruct Gaza without strengthening the Hamas. The reconstruction of Hamastan in Gaza — an Iranian base that threatens Israel and many moderate Arab regimes — makes no strategic sense.

More importantly, Hamas has used aid to enhance its military capabilities. It built an infrastructure to produce missiles and a network of tunnels. The home-made missiles are relatively cheap, but according to IDF estimates, the cost of each attack tunnel is approximately $3 million. All this adds up to millions of dollars.

America helped reconstruct Western Europe and Japan after World War II to make sure they would be ruled by friendly democratic regimes. Hamas is authoritarian and anti-Western. Moreover, its rule will doom the Gazans to continuous poverty and ignorance. It is simply senseless to facilitate the continuation of Hamas rule.

History of humanitarian aid in the last century shows that outside economic aid is only as good as the ability of a recipient’s economy and government to use it prudently and productively. Like many Third World countries, Gaza lacks the legal and institutional infrastructure needed for the effective dispersal of economic aid. Billions of euros transferred to the PA since the Oslo Accords have been squandered and misused by corruption and ineptitude. Very little aid has filtered down to the people. Therefore, it is not at all clear that sending more money to the dysfunctional Gaza will do any good.
From what we know of the fortunes of the humanitarian aid transferred to the Gazans in recent years, it is clear that external aid will be siphoned off to the corrupt Hamas leadership. Khaled Mashaal, and Musa Abu Marzook are evaluated to be billionaires, while Ismail Haniyeh, is only a millionaire.

Some will be directed to Hamas activists; and only what is left will go to the destitute. Those with arms always get the first and best cut from international aid sent to the suffering. This is what is happening everywhere international aid is dispensed. Gaza is not different.

Humanitarian aid should be dispensed judiciously, while making sure that it does not preserve poverty and dependence. Even the friends of the Palestinian national movement should realize that it is time for tough love for Gaza.

BESA Center Perspectives Papers are published through the generosity of the Greg Rosshandler Family

(Photo Credit: Flickr/US Department of State)

Prof. Efraim Inbar, director of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, is a professor of political studies at Bar-Ilan University, and a Shillman/Ginsburg fellow at the Middle East Forum.


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Revealed: IRS and State Department Conspired in Targeting Pro-Israel Group

by Thomas Lifson

The IRS scandal has just gained another dimension, and it is more than a "smidgen." Emails uncovered by the House Ways and Means Committee show that the State Department was involved in the IRS’s attempt to deny tax-exempt status to Z-Street, the pro-Israel organization founded and run by AT contributor Lori Lowenthal Marcus, based on Z-Street’s pro-Israel positions that conflicted with Obama administration policy. This is known as “viewpoint discrimination,” and is strictly illegal.

The Wall Street Journal explains what has been uncovered:
 …emails uncovered by the House Ways and Means Committee show that the IRS and State Department were conferring in 2009 about pro-Israel groups like Z Street and considering arguments to deny their tax-exempt applications.
In an April 16, 2009 email, Treasury attache to the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem Katherine Bauer sent IRS and Treasury colleagues a 1997 JTA News article sent to her by State Department foreign service officer Breeann McCusker. The subject was whether 501(c) groups buying land in Israel's disputed territories were engaged in "possible violations of U.S. tax laws." The article chronicles the controversy and whether "ideological activity" can "legally be financed with the help of U.S. [tax] dollars."
"Thought you might find the below article of interest—looks like we've been down this road before," Ms. Bauer wrote. "Although I believe you've said you can't speak to on-going investigations, I thought it was worth flagging the 1997 investigation mentioned below for you if it can be of any use internally when looking for precedence [sic] for the current cases." A Treasury spokesman declined comment on Ms. Bauer's behalf.
The "current cases" would have been applications like Z Street's in which Israel-related activity was apparently being scrutinized for its ideological and policy content. The government says Z Street got special scrutiny because it was focused in a region with a higher risk of terrorism, which is hard to believe and in any case doesn't explain all of the IRS's behavior.
It doesn't cover, for instance, why one questionnaire we've seen from the IRS to another Jewish group applying for tax-exempt status asked, "Does your organization support the existence of the land of Israel?" and "Describe your organization's religious belief system toward the land of Israel." No matter the answers, they should not affect the processing of an application for 501(c) status. The State-IRS emails reveal a political motivation for IRS scrutiny that gives Z Street powerful evidence for its suit charging IRS bias.
Another thing that the emails demonstrate is that bureaucratic bungling within the IRS can’t be a believable excuse. This is now a scandal that involves a conspiracy between different departments of the federal government, strongly implying a coordinating effort senior to the Departments of State and Treasury. Which would be…the White House.

This is so incriminating that a full court press is being invoked to delay further discovery. The lawsuit filed by Z-Street in 2010 is the furthest along of any judicial inquiries into the IRS scandals. And the IRS is doing everything possible to slow it down:
On Monday the IRS filed an appeal of the judge's decision denying its motion to dismiss Z Street's case. The government says the action stops all discovery while the appeal is pending, a process that could take months or even years. By filing the appeal on the last possible day, the Justice Department is running out the clock on discovery during the remainder of the Administration.
This is a whole lot of effort to prevent discovery in a case that is not even seeking damages.
Of course, the damages the IRS and its bosses are worried about don’t concern money. We the taxpayers are on the hook for that. The real damage comes from public knowledge of the extent of the politicization of the IRS and other government departments working together to suppress political opposition to the administration. That was among the articles of impeachment for Richard Nixon that Hillary Clinton helped draft. If the media were not so blatantly biased and treated Obama the way they treated Nixon, this current revelation would be scraming from the nightly news and the front pages of today's newspapers.

Thomas Lifson


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Jerusalem Imam: Egypt should Annex Gaza, Lead Armies to Annihilate the Jews

by Robert Spencer

Imagine if a Jewish rabbi had called upon Israel to annihilate Muslims. The outcry would be intense, international, and prolonged. But there are so many calls these days for genocide of the Jews, this one will receive scant notice. In any case, anything that shows that the Israeli/”Palestinian” conflict is a struggle of civilized man against savages is given short shrift in the mainstream media.

“Jerusalem Imam: Egypt Should Annex Gaza, Lead Arab Armies in Annihilating the Jews,” MEMRI, July 18, 2014:
In a Friday sermon in Ras Al-Amoud, East Jerusalem, Sheik Nidhal Siam said that Egypt should annex Gaza. If it were joined by the Turkish, Jordanian, Algerian, Moroccan, Mauritanian, and Pakistani armies, he said, they would be “praying by noon on Monday in the Al-Aqsa Mosque.” Egypt has the duty to refrain from remaining neutral with regard to recent events in Gaza, Siam said in the July 18 sermon, which was posted on the Internet.

Following are excerpts:

Nidhal Siam: A study was conducted by a British organization. It was conducted not by me or by the Muslims, but by English infidels. According to the study, the Egyptian army, with the weapons it possesses today, is capable of crushing Israel within three days. By Allah, three days is a long time. If the Egyptian army sets out right now, after the prayers, they will be praying at noon on Monday in the Al-Aqsa Mosque – all the more so if they are joined by the mighty Turkish army, by the Jordanian army, by the Algerian army, and by the armies of Morocco and of Mauritania, and when the Pakistani army cries: “Allah Akbar! Come to Jihad! Oh steed of Allah, arise and bring the glad tidings of Paradise!”
The Egyptian army has the duty, first and foremost, to refrain from remaining neutral in the face of the events in Gaza. Its duty is to annex Gaza to Egypt right now, this very night, and then to instate Islam, and to march and annihilate the Jews. It should bring us the Emir of the Believers, to whom we will pledge allegiance, and he will lead us in prayer in the Al-Aqsa Mosque. He will preach the sermon to you next Friday.

Robert Spencer


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To the Students for Justice in Palestine, a Letter From an Angry Black Woman

by Robert Spencer


Chloe Valdary concludes this terrific piece by saying, “It is of course your prerogative to continue to utilize platitudes for your cause. You are entirely within your rights to chant words like ‘equality’ ‘justice’ and ‘freedom fighter.’ You can keep using those words for as long as you like. But I do not think you know what they mean.” Indeed. Or maybe they know full well what they mean, and want to confuse and manipulate people into no longer being sure , so they can more easily claim them for themselves.

“To the Students for Justice in Palestine, a Letter From an Angry Black Woman,” by Chloe Valdary, Tablet, July 28, 2014 (thanks to Linda):
The student organization Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is prominent on many college campuses, preaching a mantra of “Freeing Palestine.” It masquerades as though it were a civil rights group when it is not. Indeed, as an African-American, I am highly insulted that my people’s legacy is being pilfered for such a repugnant agenda. It is thus high time to expose its agenda and lay bare some of the fallacies they peddle.
• If you seek to promulgate the legacy of early Islamic colonialists who raped and pillaged the Middle East, subjugated the indigenous peoples living in the region, and foisted upon them a life of persecution and degradation—you do not get to claim the title of “Freedom Fighter.”
• If you support a racist doctrine of Arab supremacism and wish (as a corollary of that doctrine) to destroy the Jewish state, you do not get to claim that the prejudices you peddle are forms of legitimate “resistance.”
• If your heroes are clerics who sit in Gaza plotting the genocide of a people; who place their children on rooftops in the hopes they will get blown to bits; who heap praises upon their fellow gang members when they succeed in murdering Jewish school boys and bombing places of activity where Jews congregate—you do not get to claim that you are some Apollonian advocate of human virtue. You are not.
• If your activities include grieving over the woefully incompetent performance by Hamas rocketeers and the subsequent millions of Jewish souls who are still alive—whose children were not murdered by their rockets; whose limbs were not torn from them; and whose disembowelment did not come into fruition—you do not get to claim that you stand for justice. You profess to be irreproachable. You are categorically not.
• If your idea of a righteous cause entails targeting and intimidating Jewish students on campus, arrogating their history of exile-and-return and fashioning it in your own likeness you do not get to claim that you do so in the name of civil liberty and freedom of expression.
• You do not get to champion regimes that murder, torture, and persecute their own people, deliberately keep them impoverished, and embezzle billions of dollar from them—and claim you are “pro-Arab.” You are not.
• You do not get to champion a system wherein Jews are barred from purchasing land, traveling in certain areas, and living out such an existence merely because they are Jews—and claim that you are promoting equality for all. You do not get to enable that system by pushing a boycott of Jewish owned businesses, shops, and entities—and then claim that you are “against apartheid.” That is evil.
• You do not get to justify the calculated and deliberate bombings, beatings, and lynchings of Jewish men, women, and children by referring to such heinous occurrences as part of a noble “uprising” of the oppressed—that is racism. It is evil.
• You do not get to pretend as though you and Rosa Parks would have been great buddies in the 1960s. Rosa Parks was a real Freedom Fighter. Rosa Parks was a Zionist….

Robert Spencer


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Putin and Obama, the Bobbsey Twins

by James Lewis

For half a millennium the Russian Tsars proudly proclaimed themselves to be guardians of Christian civilization against barbarian invasions from the Asian steppes and the Muslim Middle East. Although the Tsars generally excluded Catholics from their benevolent protection, their claim to protect European Christianity was not totally wrong. Just as the Pope of Rome traces his legitimacy to the Apostle Peter, so the Russian Orthodox Church, the established church of Tsarist Russia, traces its lineage to the Byzantine Empire, beginning three centuries after Jesus of Nazareth. For all its faults, Tsarist Russia buffered the West against worse threats.

This history is important today because Putin is trying to reclaim the Tsarist legacy. Rumor has it that he likes to be called “Tsar” by his inner circle. He has regular photo ops with the Patriarch of Moscow, surrounded by the glittering bling of the Byzantine past. The choral music of Russia -- often magnificent -- can be traced to Constantinople.

Fast forward a thousand years, and you can now see Putin’s presidential website at the Kremlin, trying to look modern, peaceful, and enlightened. The regime has gone to great lengths to show the world a smiling face.

And yet, Putin has totally blown his PR campaign by his bloody actions in the Ukraine. This at a time when Europe desperately needs a protective power, because it is once again at the mercy of a hyperaggressive Islamic war theology, the faith of ancient desert pirates.

The very idea of Europe was formed historically in a war of resistance against North African Muslim invaders of Spain and France. The first European epic is the Song of Roland, which celebrates the martyrdom of Knight Roland against the treacherous Saracens. The Crusades were arguably a prolonged defensive war against Muslim invaders, who were inspired by exactly the same thinking we see today from Hamas and ISIS.

Islamic reactionary cults are carbon copies of their forebears a thousand years ago. Those ancient warrior cults have kept the Muslim world mired in the dysfunctional past. Every so often a leader like Ataturk attempts to modernize one country or another, only to be reversed several decades later. Today we are living in the Greatest Islamic Reversal, as modernist Muslims everywhere feel besieged by the self-destructive barbarism of the past.

Putin is a lifelong expert on Western Europe, beginning from his years as KGB rezident in East Germany. The KGB ran spies all the way into the West German prime minister’s office. They penetrated the UK with the Cambridge spies, and scattered spies and agents of influence in American media, government agencies, and universities. Putin knows the West like the back of his hand. He knows our decadence, and he respects our power -- when we show the will to exercise it.

Today, Europe desperately needs a protective power, and under Obama, America is walking away from its former allies. A new modernist Russia could have filled the role of a reasonable protector of the wobbly nations of Europe, with all the benefits that would accrue -- but Putin has just blown his chance. He has proven that he can never be trusted.

With the rise of a self-proclaimed terrorist caliphate in Iraq and Syria, right next door to an equally mad near-nuclear power in Iran, we are seeing a predictable WMD race spreading to the whole Middle East. Those nations are practically next door to Russia.

Vladimir Putin seems to think he is somehow immune from trouble from the south. Well, ISIS now has 88 pounds of radioactive metal, enough to make a dirty bomb. Saudi Arabia has a standing order for advanced nukes and missiles from Pakistan. Nobody so far has devised a convincing defense against a nuclear attack from a maniac regime.

And yet -- instead of protecting his threatened southern flank from nuclear-armed maniacs, Vladimir Putin is destroying his credibility in the West, which is no threat to him. Putin is living in the Soviet past, a fatal error for any would-be statesman.

His shrewd strategic sense that we saw in play only months ago has now yielded to a primitive urge for emotional revenge against the West.

None of this makes any sense, because Putin has a commodity much more precious than oil and gas: Of all the nations of Europe, only Moscow is ready, willing, and able to fight Islamic aggression. It has shown as much in Chechnya. The whole world is therefore running precisely the risk predicted by Bush and Cheney: Suicidal terrorists with space-age weapons. That horse is now out of the barn, thanks to Obama’s deliberate inaction. Recent news indicates that Obama and Qatar (a truly primitive regime) have backed the new Al Qaida “Caliphate” in Iraq and Syria. In typical Obama fashion, he picks the most barbaric and destructive players to secretly support. We can see the same pattern of behavior at our southern border, where the Sinaloa Cartel now controls more than the U.S. Border Patrol. Obama always makes things worse, and in that respect, Putin is his long-lost twin brother.

Ten years from now Russian oil and gas will be a drug on the market, with fracking  and other new extraction methods turning a third of the world into energy exporters. Ten years from now Russia will have no economic advantage left, and Putin knows that. But somehow the Kremlin still doesn’t realize that a renewed Russia could once again become the protector of civilization against barbarism. Putin’s emotional need for revenge upsets all rational calculations.

When Putin outmaneuvered Obama on Assad’s chemical weapons, he demonstrated a strong strategic capability. But now a different, more primitive Tsar has blown it in the eyes of the world. He has done it so brutally, cynically, and sadistically that he no longer looks smart or civilized. Putin is engaged in a shadow-play of his own imagining. This is not smart. In Russian, it’s nyekulturniye -- uncivilized.

Like Obama, Putin follows a revenge narrative. Obama’s Third World Socialism is an ego-satisfying emotional rampage against Western imperialism, which spluttered out sixty ago, long before Barack Obama was even born. The British Empire is gone, but Obama has an irrational need to refight the Mau Mau rebellion in Kenya. That is why he constantly needs to show the fickle finger of fate to mainstream Americans. In his mind, America still needs to be punished for slavery -- which Abraham Lincoln abolished in 1865.

Obama’s obsession with exacting revenge for European imperialism is a little bit mad, to say the least.

Yet, in their latest brutalities, Putin and his agents echo the same revenge motive. There is no strategic rationale for sending Russian Buk anti-aircraft missiles to the trigger-happy rabble of phony Ukrainians serving Putin’s cause. Today, Putin’s henchmen have shot down, not just the Malaysian airliner,  but also two Ukrainian air force jets, defending their internationally recognized sovereign territory. Russian artillery is now bombarding Ukrainian soil. Therefore Putin, too, is being drawn into a cesspool of ancient resentments, the remote echoes of causes that no sane person supports anymore.

All this is shortsighted, emotionally driven, and self-damaging. Russia is deeply in debt, and desperately needs more trade and investment. But Europe has been scared into looking for other sources of oil and gas, thereby undermining Putin’s high-priced product.

Moscow has just blown a chance to reduce American influence in Western Europe. The new Tsar has inadvertently strengthened NATO, and even bolstered the weak-kneed Europeans. If a Republican administration is elected in time, NATO will almost surely send “tripwire” contingents of troops to the Ukraine and surrounding nations. At some point the West will call his bluff.

If God has a sense of irony he is surely chuckling at two world leaders, both immensely ego-driven, unable to control their emotions, in love with themselves, and defeating their own purposes. The Chicago pol and the KGB colonel are making nasty faces at each other in a funhouse mirror.

Serious nations need clear-thinking, mature, down-to-earth leaders. Somehow America and Russia have blundered into extremely risky leaders who can’t think straight.

Here’s hoping that sensible people will throw the bums out, both here and there.

James Lewis


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Presbyterian Church USA Criticizes Israel, Ignores Christian Persecution

by Raymond Ibrahim

The Presbyterian Church USA recently withdrew $21 million worth of investments from Israel.
Days before the recent Israel/Hamas conflict erupted, the Presbyterian Church USA withdrew $21 million worth of investments from Israel because, as spokesman Heath Rada put it, the Israeli government's actions "harm the Palestinian people."

Soon after, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appeared on NBC's "Meet the Press" and was asked if he was "troubled" by the Presbyterian Church's move. Netanyahu responded:
It should trouble all people of conscience and morality because it's so disgraceful. You know, you look at what's happening in the Middle East and I think most Americans understand this, they see this enormous area riveted by religious hatred, by savagery of unimaginable proportions. Then you come to Israel and you see the one democracy that upholds basic human rights, that guards the rights of all minorities, that protects Christians—Christians are persecuted throughout the Middle East. So most Americans understand that Israel is a beacon of civilization and moderation. You know I would suggest to these Presbyterian organizations to fly to the Middle East, come and see Israel for the embattled democracy that it is, and then take a bus tour, go to Libya, go to Syria, go to Iraq, and see the difference. And I would give them two pieces of advice, one is, make sure it's an armor plated bus, and second, don't say that you're Christians.
It's difficult—if not impossible—to argue with Netanyahu's logic. Indeed, several points made in his one-minute response are deserving of some reflection.

First, the obvious: why is it that self-professed Christians completely ignore the horrific Islamic persecution of fellow Christians in the Middle East, while grandstanding against the Jewish state for trying to defend itself against the same ideology that persecutes Christians?

And he is absolutely right to say that the persecution of Christians in the Mideast has reached a point of "savagery of unimaginable proportions." Perhaps the only thing more shocking than the atrocities Mideast Christians are exposed to—the slaughters, crucifixions, beheadings, torture and rape—is the absolute silence emanating from so-called mainline Protestant churches in the U.S.

Note also the nations Netanyahu highlighted for their brutal persecution of Christian minorities: Libya, Syria, and Iraq. Indigenous Christians were markedly better off in all three nations before the U.S. got involved, specifically be empowering, deliberately or not, Islamist forces. Now, according to recent studies, Christians in all three nations are experiencing the worst form of persecution around the globe:
  • Libya: Ever since U.S.-backed, al-Qaeda-linked terrorists overthrew Gaddafi, Christians—including Americans—have been tortured and killed (including for refusing to convert) and churches bombed. It's "open season" on Copts, as jihadis issue a reward to Muslims who find and kill Christians. This was not the case under Gaddafi.
  • Syria: Christians have been attacked in indescribable ways—wholesale massacres, bombed and desecrated churches, beheadings, crucifixions, and rampant kidnappings—since the U.S.-sponsored "Arab Spring" reached the Levant.
  • Iraq: After the U.S. toppled Saddam Hussein, Christian minorities were savagely attacked and slaughtered, and dozens of their churches were bombed (see here for graphic images). In the last decade, Christians have been terrorized into near-extinction, with well over half of them fleeing Iraq.
If the Presbyterian Church has problems with governments that persecute people—in this case, the Israeli government's purported treatment of Palestinians, hence the Presbyterian Church's divestment from Israel—perhaps it should begin by criticizing its own government's proxy war on fellow Christians in the Middle East.

Christians are also being targeted in the P.A. territories—by the very same elements the Presbyterian Church is trying to defend.

In 2012, for example, a pastor noted that "animosity towards the Christian minority in areas controlled by the P.A. continues to get increasingly worse. People are always telling [Christians],Convert to Islam. Convert to Islam." And in fact, the kidnapping and forced conversions of Christians in Gaza is an ugly reality."

More recently, nuns of the Greek-Orthodox monastery in Bethany sent a letter to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas urging him to respond to the escalation of attacks on the Christian house, including the throwing of stones, broken glass, theft and looting of the monastery property. "Someone wants to send us away," wrote Sister Ibraxia in the letter, "but we will not flee."

Sadly, the hypocrisy exhibited by the Presbyterian Church is not limited to that denomination. Some time back, fifteen leaders from various U.S. Christian denominations—mostly Protestant, including the Lutheran, Methodist, and UCC Churches—asked Congress to reevaluate U.S. military aid to Israel, again, in the context of supporting "persecuted" Palestinians.

Yet nary a word from these same church leaders concerning the rampant persecution of millions of Christians at the hands of Muslims in the Middle East—a persecution that makes the Palestinians' situation pale in comparison.

Other "leftist" Protestants do find time to criticize Muslim persecution of Christians—but only to blame Israel for it. Thus, Diarmaid MacCulloch, a Fellow of St. Cross College, wrote an article in the Daily Beast ostensibly addressing the plight of Mideast Christians—but only to argue that the source of Christian persecution " in the Middle East is seven decades of unresolved conflict between Israel and Palestine."

In reality, far from prompting the persecution of Christians, the Arab-Israeli conflict is itself a byproduct of the same hostility Islamic supremacism engenders for all non-Muslims. The reason hostility for Israel is much more viral is because the Jewish state holds a unique position of authority over Muslims unlike vulnerable Christian minorities who can be abused at will (as fully explained here).

Little wonder, then, that more Arab Christians—double the number of each of the preceding three years—are now joining the Israel Defense Forces.

They know they can count on basic human rights protection from Israel than from many of their fellow Christians in the West. After all, beyond the sophistry, distortions, and downright lies emanating from some of these Christian denominations, the fact remains: both Jews and Christians are under attack from the same foe and for the same reason: they are non-Muslim "infidels" who need to be subjugated.

Raymond Ibrahim is a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center, a Judith Friedman Rosen Writing Fellow at the Middle East Forum and a CBN News contributor. He is the author of Crucified Again: Exposing Islam's New War on Christians (2013) and The Al Qaeda Reader (2007).

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