Monday, July 16, 2018

Three wounded as 200 projectiles fired at Israel from Gaza Strip - Anna Ahronheim

by Anna Ahronheim

More than 40 targets were struck across the Gaza Strip following incessant rocket fire and launching of aerial incendiary devices.

Israelis wounded by Palestinian rocket fired from Gaza into Israeli town of Sderot, July 14, 2018 (Reuters)
Close to 200 projectiles were launched from the Gaza Strip toward the South since late Friday with at least 30 of them intercepted by the Iron Dome.

According to the IDF, Hamas launched 100 of the projectiles from 3 p.m onwards. The Iron Dome intercepted about 20 and another 73 fell in open areas. One rocket landed inside a kibbutz in the Sha’ar Hanegev Regional Council area and another rocket struck a courtyard of a synagogue in Sderot, without causing any injuries.

Three Israelis were wounded after a projectile hit a home in Sderot.

According to Magen David Adom, a 14-year-old girl was lightly wounded in her legs, a 15-year-old was lightly wounded with injuries to her face from broken glass and a 52-year-old man was in moderate condition after sustaining a chest wounded. All were evacuated by MDA to Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon.

Earlier in the day, a firefighter was lightly wounded after falling while trying to take cover from a projectile. Damage was also caused to vehicles and to a chicken coop in a community in the Eshkol Regional Council.

As a precaution, the IDF instructed residents in Gaza border communities to remain within a 15-second radius from bomb shelters or safe rooms, closed the Zikim beach on Saturday and restricted gatherings of more than 100 people in open spaces, and more than 500 people in closed spaces across the border communities.

Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot held a situational assessment with the Gaza Division on Saturday, which included the participation of Southern Command head Maj.-Gen. Hertzi Halevi, Operations Directorate head Maj.-Gen. Aharon Haliva and Gaza Division commander Brig.-Gen. Yehuda Fuchs, as well as other commanders.

Earlier in the day, the IAF carried out the largest daytime operation against Hamas since Operation Protective Edge in 2014 with fighter jets hitting 40 targets across the Gaza Strip, IDF Spokesman Brig.-Gen. Ronen Manelis said.

“There are three vectors here that we see in severity and cannot allow them to continue: fire terrorism, terrorism along the fence and rocket fire. We intend to stop it,” Manelis said.

While “it’s too early to talk about a broad military operation, we have understood in recent weeks that this day will come, and once relevant conditions have been created, we will act.”

A senior IAF officer said that while “in the last few hours Hamas has chosen to fire projectiles toward communities close to the Gaza border, you can’t take it for granted they will stop there.”

He warned that Israel would respond in a tougher manner if Hamas increase their distance of rocket fire to over 10 km.

“Hamas will regret it if it goes beyond that range, but we’re prepared for such a possibility,” he said.

The daytime trikes on Saturday targeted the headquarters of the Beit Lahiya Battalion, with jets striking urban warfare training facilities, weapon storage warehouses, training compounds, command centers, offices and more.

“The battalion command’s entire infrastructure has been destroyed, vaporized, turned into a giant hole,” Manelis said. Other strikes targeted armories, including those belonging to Hamas’s naval terrorism wing.

“This attack displays the IDF’s advanced intelligence and operational capabilities and could expand as needed and in accordance with a situational assessment,” the military said.

Later on Saturday, the IAF struck a high-rise building in the al-Shati refugee camp, wounding at least two children and several other Gazans. The IDF said it had warned residents of the building in advance of the strike, which was targeted because it was being used by Hamas as an urban warfare training facility and had a tunnel underneath it for underground warfare training.

IDF Arab Media division head Maj. Avichay Adraee warned Gazans on social media to keep their distance from buildings and persons who serve “terrorists organizations.”

“This a special announcement for Gaza’s residents. You are requested to immediately remove yourselves from every facility or infrastructure that are used by terror organizations, to stay away from every person who is known as a terrorist and from every space in which terror organizations operate.

“Beware, you have been warned,” he said. “The sights of 2018 could be much more horrific than the sights of 2014.”

The large-scale daytime operation came several hours after the IAF struck several Hamas targets, including two offensive terrorist tunnels in northern and southern Gaza, as well as several targets in military compounds where Hamas assembles incendiary balloons and a Hamas training camp.

“The IDF retaliated to the terror attacks that were committed during the violent riots on the Gaza border fence on Friday and the ongoing balloon terrorism,” the army said.

As IAF jets struck targets in Gaza, Hamas launched 31 projectiles toward the South with six of them intercepted by the Iron Dome.

According to official Palestinian news agency WAFA, IAF jets struck sites across the entire Gaza Strip, causing significant damage and lightly wounded one Palestinian in northern Gaza overnight.

The IDF said Hamas, which is responsible for all violence emanating from Gaza, “continues with its terrorism, acts against troops and against security infrastructures attempting to hurt Israel’s citizens.”

The military accused Hamas of “sabotaging the humanitarian efforts” and of using Gazan civilians as human shields, and continues to endanger them by carrying out terrorist attacks against Israel.

The terrorist group, which has ruled Gaza since 2007, “is responsible for the events transpiring in the Gaza Strip and emanating from it and will bear the consequences for its actions against Israeli civilians and Israeli sovereignty. The IDF views Hamas’s terror activity with great severity and is prepared for a wide variety of scenarios,” the army said.

The overnight strikes came after violent clashes took place along the security fence separating Israel and Gaza on Friday. During the clashes, an IDF major was moderately wounded by a grenade thrown at him and his troops by Palestinians rioters near the old Karni crossing near Kibbutz Nahal Oz. He was hit by shrapnel in his upper body and airlifted to the Soroka University Medical Center in Beersheba in stable condition.

In response, the troops opened fire toward the Palestinians who threw the grenade, with one hit identified.

The IDF is investigating the incident, which is one of the most serious to have occurred since the weekly demonstrations began on March 30, as part of what organizers have called the “Great March of Return.”

Palestinian demonstrators have launched hundreds of kites, balloons and helium-filled condoms with incendiary and explosive devices on a daily basis into Israel, sparking fires that have destroyed thousands of acres of farmland, parks and forests. Hamas has said the protests, which also demand an end to a grinding Israeli and Egyptian blockade on Gaza, will continue until their demands are met.

According to WAFA, two Palestinian youth were killed on Friday and another 200 were wounded. The two fatalities were identified as Muhammad Nasser Shurrab, 20, from Khan Yunis and 15-year-old Othman Rami Halles.

Gaza’s Health Ministry said their deaths bring the total killed by Israel since the start of the border protests to 139.

Anna Ahronheim


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France: A Second Jihad in the Bataclan? - Guy Millière

by Guy Millière

Macron and the French government speak and act as if the enemy has won and as if they want to gain some time and enjoy the moment before the final surrender.

  • Organizations representing the families of the Bataclan victims said that an Islamic rap concert praising jihad, in a place where people were murdered and tortured by jihadists, would be an insult to the memory of the victims, and asked that the concerts be canceled.
  • "France is at war, and leaves the enemy in peace". — Ivan Rioufol, journalist, in Le Figaro.
  • Macron and the French government speak and act as if the enemy has won and as if they want to gain some time and enjoy the moment before the final surrender.
"The French Suicide" ("Le suicide français") is a book published by the author Éric Zemmour in October 2014. Just one year later, on November 13, 2015 in Paris, a horror took place at the Bataclan Theater, when three terrorists fired into the crowd during a concert, murdered 130 people, and injured 413. Some of the victims had been tortured.

The French population reacted as usual: shock and horror quickly gave way to resignation and submission. Flowers, candles and teddy bears were placed at the scene of the attacks. The government promised to act, but did almost nothing. A ceremony was organized that ended with a song that said, "When All You Have is Love".

A parliamentary commission of inquiry drafted a report. Military forces, deployed in the streets before the attacks, were reinforced. A climate of resignation and submission reigned.

Pictured: Policemen outside of the Bataclan Theater in Paris, France on November 16, 2015, three days after the murderous terrorist attack. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

When the Bataclan Theater reopened a year later, the musician Sting sang a song called Inshallah ("If it be your will, it shall come to pass"). Commemorative plaques bearing the word "murders" -- not terrorism, and of course not jihad -- were laid to honor the victims so that passers-by would learn that people were killed, but not by whom. For the second anniversary of the attacks, political leaders from left and right released balloons and smiled as they rose in the sky.

The attacks of November 13, 2015 had seemed to be relegated to an almost forgotten past, when two recent events put them back on the map.

Lawyers for the victims of the attacks carefully read the report of the commission of inquiry (released to the public on July 5, 2016), and discovered a few shocking facts. It turned out that soldiers in charge of anti-terrorism operations had been standing nearby on the night of the attack. Also, when the police officers who arrived at the scene as the attack began discovered that they had no adequate weapons with which to confront the terrorists, they asked the soldiers for help. The soldiers contacted the Military Governor of Paris, General Bruno Le Ray, who replied that France was "not at war", and that it was "unthinkable to put soldiers in danger to save lives". Therefore, while dozens of innocent people were being murdered, the soldiers, a few dozen meters away, did not respond. Meanwhile, the police waited for reinforcements, which took more than three hours to arrive.

The lawyers for the victims were horrified. They spoke of non-assistance to persons in danger and decided to sue the army and the police. The complaint was officially filed on June 8, 2018.

Shortly after that, posters announcing two events at the Bataclan were posted in Paris.

These events -- Islamic rap concerts -- are scheduled to take place this October, close to the third anniversary of the attacks. The artist who will perform them is called Médine, after Medina, the city from which the Prophet of Islam began to conduct his jihad. Médine's lyrics are filled with hatred towards non-Muslims, France and the West. One of his best-known songs, in fact, is called "Jihad". Apparently to make sure that his message clear, Médine has released pictures showing him wearing a T-shirt on which the "J" in the word jihad is replaced by a vertical sword. In other photos, Médine can be seen making a "quenelle", a hand gesture similar to a chest-level of the Nazi salute and made famous by Dieudonné, a comedian convicted for anti-Semitism.

Organizations representing the families of the Bataclan victims said that an Islamic rap concert praising jihad, in a place where people were murdered and tortured by jihadists, would be an insult to the memory of the victims, and asked that the concerts be canceled.

The lawsuit filed by the lawyers is unlikely to succeed. The government has already said that the army and the police have "done their duty."

The concerts will most likely not be canceled. French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said that "freedom of speech" has to be respected and accused the complaining organizations of playing the game of the "extreme right." Muslim organizations spoke of "Islamophobia."

Laurent Wauquiez, president of the conservative Les Républicains party, said that "the role of the police and the army is to watch over the safety of people and not wait passively while people get killed." He also said that if the concerts were held, it would be a "sacrilege" and the second death of the victims of the attacks. Other conservative politicians shared his opinion. They were immediately accused of "racism".

Most mainstream French media outlets remained silent. Those who broke the silence accused the lawyers of needlessly wanting to reopen old wounds. Virtually no journalist spoke of booking Médine's concerts at the Bataclan: those who did, such as Edouard Philippe, invoked "freedom of speech".

Evidently, then, France is a country where the police and the army can refuse to protect people, and where generals can order dereliction of duty without being sanctioned. France is also evidently a country where praising jihad in a place where jihadists massacred people is acceptable.

Although there has been no major attack in France since July 14, 2016, when a Muslim terrorist murdered 86 people by ramming a truck into a crowd in Nice, other, smaller, Islamic attacks have taken place. A priest was beheaded in Normandy while he was saying mass. Two elderly Jewish women were tortured and murdered in their Paris apartments. Two young women were hacked to death with a machete in front of the Marseille train station. Three customers of a supermarket and a gendarmerie officer were slaughtered near Carcassonne. And on May 12, 2018, a young man was stabbed to death near the Place de l'Opera in Paris.

No one even reacted.

French President Emmanuel Macron, a few weeks after he was elected, while sharing an iftar dinner during Ramadan with the leaders of the French Muslim community, said that "attacks" were the results of "perverse lies" that have nothing to do with Islam. He also said that in France, Islam must have "the place it deserves". He is working on that. A big event called "Assises de l'Islam de France" ("The Foundation of the Islam of France") is scheduled for this fall.

In the coming months, 450 people defined as "radicalized" and dangerous will be released from prison: they all will have completed their sentences. France is a country where people who commit first-degree murder rarely spend more than 15 years in prison. The government claims that everyone released will be monitored. During the last decade, however, most of those who murdered in the name of jihad were supposedly monitored.

President Macron, noting that a growing minority of the French are anxious about the future, and that people throughout Europe vote more and more for parties eager to defend Western civilization, spoke of a "rising leprosy".

"France is at war, and leaves the enemy in peace", wrote the journalist Ivan Rioufol recently in the daily Le Figaro. Macron and the French government, however, do not seem to think that France is at war. They speak and act as if the enemy has won and as if they want to gain some time and enjoy the moment before the final surrender.

On July 3, in Nantes, a young thug named Aboubakar Fofana, while trying to escape arrest, injured a police officer, and in the process was shot by another police officer. Three nights of chaos followed. Dozens of cars and shops were burned. The policeman who shot Aboubakar Fofana is charged with manslaughter and could be sentenced to prison -- simply for trying to enforce the law. He was, it was ruled, in the wrong. Whenever a police officer in France wants to enforce the law and a violent incident happens, the policeman is punished. Two other cases of the same kind:
  • In October 2005, policemen tried to arrest two young men, Zyed Benna and Bouna Traoré. The young men escaped and tried to hide in an electricity substation, where they were electrocuted by accident. Ten days of riots followed, which caused up to €200 million in damage. Two policemen were accused of "failure to help" and "deliberately endangering the lives of others". They were fired and indicted. They were declared innocent ten years later.
  • In February 2017, a young man called Theo Luhaka attacked policemen, and was arrested. He was hurt and accused policemen to have "raped" him. A policeman was fired and was indicted by a judge. Riots occurred all over the country. François Hollande who was then President came to visit Theo at the hospital. One year later, the policeman was declared innocent, the policeman still receive death threats.
The police officers and soldiers who did nothing for hours during the November 13, 2015 terrorist attack may just not have wanted to risk being punished.

Guy Millière, a professor at the University of Paris, is the author of 27 books on France and Europe.


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Hamas' dangerous gamble ‎- Prof. Eyal Zisser

by Prof. Eyal Zisser 

Hamas' leaders know that if they push Israel too far, the IDF will bring about the end of their regime in Gaza. This, for itself, is nothing new, but it seems that now, Hamas feels confident enough to take this chance.

The round of violence on the Israel-Gaza Strip ‎border this weekend was the broadest since ‎Operation Protective Edge concluded four years ago. ‎

The border has remained largely quiet since then, ‎but as time went by, Hamas has been increasingly ‎struggling to uphold the cease-fire Egyptian and ‎Qatari envoys were able to broker in 2014. If ‎anything, the past few months have proved that Hamas ‎is willing to take steps that will inevitably lead ‎to a conflict with Israel, such as the border riot ‎campaign, arson terrorism or trying to cement an ‎equation by which any Israeli strike over the former ‎two would trigger rocket fire on Israel's south. ‎

Hamas is not really interested in facing off Israel ‎again, as it knows that fresh hostilities will not ‎result in it being better off. It also knows that if ‎it pushes Israel too far, the IDF will bring about ‎the end of Hamas rule in Gaza. ‎

This, for itself, is nothing new, the difference is ‎that now, Hamas feels strong enough – confident ‎enough – to take this chance and deal with its ‎potential consequences. ‎

Being the seasoned political poker players that they ‎are, Hamas' leaders assume Israel will be the first ‎to blink; that even if the IDF launches a military ‎campaign in Gaza, it will be short and end with yet ‎another flimsy cease-fire, one that will not ‎harm Hamas and maybe even result in an agreement ‎that would alleviate the dire economic situation in ‎Gaza.‎

It is therefore highly unlikely that Hamas will stop ‎its provocations, especially as it seems to be ‎marking some achievements, even if those are mostly ‎psychological, opposite Israel. It is equally ‎difficult to see Hamas agree to the first phase of ‎the U.S. peace plan, which entails the ‎demilitarization of Gaza in exchange for economic ‎relief. Hamas, just like the other terrorist groups ‎in Gaza, believes relinquishing its arsenal is akin ‎to suicide, which is why it will never agree to it.‎

In the absence of dialogue between Israel and Hamas, ‎and given the rift between Palestinian Authority ‎President Mahmoud Abbas' Ramallah government and ‎Hamas leadership in Gaza, both sides need someone to ‎help them climb down from the ‎very tall tree on which they are perched.‎

Such mediation could lead to an agreement that would ‎curb Hamas' military activities and perhaps even ‎advance a deal that would secure the return of the ‎Israelis held captive by Hamas, which, in turn, would ‎enable Israeli gestures that would ease Gaza's ‎economic plight.‎

Past experience has seen rivals Egypt and Qatar ‎assume the role of mediator. Egypt has a clear ‎interest in preventing a security escalation in ‎Gaza, as it may spill over its own border.‎ It remains to be seen, however, whether it still ‎wields the same influence on Gaza as before, given ‎the newfound chumminess between Hamas and Iran. The ‎latter would like nothing more than to see an ‎escalation in Gaza, as it would take the pressure ‎off Israel's efforts to curb its entrenchment in ‎Syria. ‎

Prof. Eyal Zisser is a lecturer in the Middle East History Department at Tel Aviv University.


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The Donald Does Europe - Clarice Feldman

by Clarice Feldman

Democrats and anti-Trumpers think it’s perfectly fine for European leaders to put their own national interests first while criticizing the President for promoting and defending ours.

The president headed to Europe, tweeting all the way, like a modern cavalier on his way to do battle with the forces of corruption and bad governance:
The European Union makes it impossible for our farmers and workers and companies to do business in Europe (U.S. has a $151 Billion trade deficit), and then they want us to happily defend them through NATO, and nicely pay for it. Just doesn't work! 
Naturally, the bureaucrats' backs were up.  (Kind of like Strzok's when he claimed absurdly that the many texts and emails in which he revealed that outrageously anti-Trump biases were not evidence of bias.)

European Council president Donald Tusk spouted, "Dear America, appreciate your allies, after all you don't have that many."  The president:
... accused the EU of being "terrible" to the United States on trade.
"We lost $151 billion last year dealing with the European Union," Trump told reporters, referring to the U.S. trade deficit with the 28-nation bloc.  "So they can call me all sorts of names.  And if I were them, I'd call me names also, because it's not going to happen any longer."
Trump was responding to a question about comments Wednesday from Tusk, who criticized the "capricious assertiveness of the U.S. administration" and asked: "With friends like that, who needs enemies?"
"Well, I could reverse that," Trump shot back today.  "Look, the European Union has been terrible to the United States on trade.  They've been terrible to our workers."
Tusk's remarks followed Trump's withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal and his threats to impose new tariffs on European steel and aluminum.
Trump said his criticism of the EU sprang from the 2.5 percent tariff that European carmakers face on exports to the United States, compared with the 10 percent tariff that the EU imposes on U.S.-made autos.
The NATO meeting was similarly contentious; with the cameras rolling, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg fired his best shot and got a stunning return volley:
PRESIDENT TRUMP: But how can you be together when a country is getting the energy from the person you want protection against or from the group you want protection?
SECRETARY GENERAL STOLTENBERG: Because we understand that when we stand together, also in dealing with Russia, we are stronger. I think what we have seen is that –
PRESIDENT TRUMP: No, you're just making Russia richer, You're not dealing with Russia, You're making Russia richer.
The European Union Commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker, showed up at the NATO dinner obviously drunk and teetering, propped up by other delegates as he staggered in.

The meeting highlighted the U.S.'s outsized role in funding NATO while the members exercise tariff-driven trade advantages against their benefactor Uncle Sam's taxpayers.  The truth is that it's more than money that's at issue regarding European defenses.  Pumping ever more money into social welfare benefits, Europe has largely ignored the needs of their military and on occasions when they do send some troops on a NATO mission, the troops need to be outfitted up by U.S. forces.  The troops – in particular the German troops, the largest NATO country army – as reports from Iraq confirmed, were dangerously undertrained, poorly supplied, and not up to the task.

And the irony of the situation was not lost when the president pointed out that we were spending so much to defend Europe from Russia when Germany, with a push in 2005 from its former chancellor, Gerhard Schroeder (now chief European lobbyist for Putin), authorized a pipeline from Russia that made his country and Europe more dependent upon Russia, a dependency the Russians have not failed to exploit when it suits their aims.
How is it ... that Schroeder's cheerful embrace of lobbying for Russia has barely made a ripple on this side of the pond?  The cynical answer is that most of those screaming the loudest about Russia today don't think of Putin as sinister because of his lack of criticism of Trump; they think of Trump as sinister because of his lack of criticism of Putin.  Indeed, Russia shot down a passenger airliner over Ukraine in 2014 and it was out of the news within a week.
But their cynicism doesn't change the fact that Russia is generally hostile to American policies under presidents of either party, and Vladimir Putin would love to see the NATO alliance collapse.  Their military actions in Georgia and Crimea demonstrate that when the Russians think they can get away with naked aggression, they'll try it.
In that light, the reluctance of some NATO members to honor their agreements, and spend the required 2 percent of GDP on military spending, is baffling.  In 2017, just four member states hit that 2 percent threshold – the United States, (3.57 percent), Greece (2.36 percent), the United Kingdom (2.12 percent), and Estonia (2.08 percent), and we'll give Poland the benefit of the doubt because they hit 1.99 percent.
Tiny Luxembourg ranked last, spending less than one-half of 1 percent on their military.  Perhaps Luxembourg's leaders figure that because they're nestled between France, Germany, and Belgium, they can count on their neighbors to slow down any invading Russians.
And as we, in effect, are subsidizing them and sending men and arms in to protect European interests, we get snide critiques in return.

Not given to mincing words, the president made clear this contradiction, batting aside Merkel's defense of Germany's conduct:
"We are protecting Germany, we are protecting France, we are protecting all of these countries and then numerous of the countries go out and make a pipeline deal with Russia where they are paying billions of dollars into the coffers of Russia. I think that is very inappropriate."
He added: "It should never have been allowed to happen.  Germany is totally controlled by Russia because they will be getting 60-70% of their energy from Russia and a new pipeline.
"You tell me if that's appropriate because I think it's not.  On top of that Germany is just paying just a little bit over 1% [of GDP on Nato defence contributions] whereas the United States is paying 4.2% of a much larger GDP.  So I think that's inappropriate also."
His comments were linked to his push for other European countries – particularly Germany – to pay more for Nato's defence needs.
"I think it is unfair," Trump said. Other US presidents had raised the matter of European defence spending levels in the past but he was intent on dealing with it, he continued.  "We can't put up with it."
Germany's plan to increase its defence expenditure to the Nato target of 2% of GDP by 2030 was not good enough, Trump said.  "They could do it tomorrow," he added.
The frank talk about the absurdity of the Cold War strategy is nothing new – since 1988, people as disparate as Patricia Shroeder and Richard Perle have been making it.

Nevertheless, the president's critics would like to pretend that the policy isn't nuts even apart from the non-payments of pledged amounts into NATO, the Russian gas pipeline, and the disastrous state of the militaries of these allies.

They ignore, among other things, our NATO allies' deals with Iran.
The NATO countries are, indeed, among America's closest allies, but some of them appear more interested in oil, natural gas, and trade with Iran than in the Fulda Gap.  Some of our "closest allies" have been working overtime to undermine America.  If Mr. Trump is irritated with them, there is a reason.
Iran is preparing to take $300 million in cash out of German banks to get ahead of impending U.S. banking sanctions.  While American intelligence officials are concerned that the money will finance terrorism, the German government says it has "no evidence" to that effect.  According to the German newspaper Bild, "Iran ... says that they need the money 'to pass it on to Iranian individuals who, when travelling abroad, are dependent on euros in cash due to their lack of access to accepted credit cards.'"  The German government appears to think that one million Iranian tourists might need $300 each – or perhaps 300 tourists might need $1 million each.
The plan to send dollars to Tehran is in line with European negotiations, led by Germany and France, to help Iran mitigate the economic fallout of the American withdrawal from the JCPOA – the Iran deal.  The E.U. has also begun to update its "blocking statute," the rule that will prevent European companies from complying with impending Iran sanctions.
Germany is willing to run a multi-billion-euro trade deficit with Iran to keep the doors open, even as a 2018 German intelligence report confirms that Iran is currently seeking nuclear technology in there. 
Not that the president isn't swimming upstream against a lot of domestic opposition to policy transparency and honesty.

Breitbart rolls them out.  Here are some of my favorites from the article.

John Kerry, who secretly dealt with the North Vietnamese without authority:
Former Secretary of State John Kerry described Trump's Wednesday comments at a NATO breakfast meeting in Brussels, Belgium, as "counterproductive," "disgraceful," and "destructive."  He also said Trump is "[setting] America back" and "destroying [America's] reputation in the world."
My thoughts on President Trump's remarks in Brussels this morning:
—John Kerry (@JohnKerry) July 11, 2018
Obama's designated liar, Susan Rice:
Susan Rice (@AmbassadorRice) December 10, 2017
Today, we abdicated America's global leadership for the foreseeable future. And, we sold out our kids, grandkids & allies. Nice job, guys!
— Susan Rice (@AmbassadorRice) June 2, 2017
In any event, despite the wailing and gnashing of teeth by those stuck in some post-World War II time warp who have decided to remain blinkered about what's been going on and continue to stick us with an undue burden, NATO members have agreed to pony up more, according to the President. (Naysayers say they've seen no evidence of that, but I expect we will.)

Just before the scheduled meeting between Trump and Putin, Special Counsel Mueller indicted 12 people he claims are Russian military officers who reportedly hacked the DNC's unsecured servers.  I suppose he didn't learn his lesson the first time he pulled such a publicity stunt.  There he aimed for a propaganda victory against defendants he had no jurisdiction over, one of whom wasn't even in existence during the period in question.  He never anticipated one would hire very competent counsel who entered an appearance and demanded in discovery proceedings to see the evidence.

It will be fun to see if one of them in this second junk case hires counsel to come in and during discovery procedures demands to see the DNC server, which as far as I know the DNC has refused to turn over to Comey, Mueller, or anyone else.

Even that cannot be so wonderful for the Democrats, for in announcing the latest fantasy indictments, Mueller's boss, Rod Rosenstein, said, "There is no allegation in this indictment that Americans knew that they were corresponding with Russians ... there is no allegation that any American committed a crime."

It's all Alice in Wonderland stuff, isn't it?  Democrats and anti-Trumpers think it's perfectly fine for European leaders to put their own national interests first while criticizing the president for promoting and defending ours while calling out our allies' hypocrisy.  For them, it's fine for the special counsel to waste time and money by indicting foreign nationals, over whom he lacks jurisdiction, for hacking unsecured communications made in violation of national security regulations, while he's never going after the perpetrators here, including Hillary Clinton, who made such hacking possible and likely.

Clarice Feldman


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Black Slaves, Muslim Masters - Charles Jacobs

by Charles Jacobs

An appeal to American blacks.

Arabs and Muslims have black slaves today and hardly anyone, especially the leftist class which preens about its devotion to human rights, is screaming about this. In five African nations — AlgeriaLibyaMauritaniaNigeria, and Sudan — blacks serve Arab/Muslim masters. They are bought and sold like furniture. They are worked until they drop, tortured, raped, forcibly converted to Islam, and murdered. This has been going on for many years, but it only occasionally makes today’s headlines.

This is an open secret. Anyone can Google “blacks sold as slaves in Libya” and see video of slave markets. I know Africans from Sudan and Nigeria and Mauritania who want to tell this story but they cannot get platforms. Below is a short clip of the testimony of an escaped slave from Sudan, Francis Bok. Here is his incredible story told in long form. I have decided to help these people tell their story. The people who need to hear it most are American blacks. Please support our effort by contacting us at Americans for Peace and Tolerance.

Dr. Charles Jacobs is the president of Americans for Peace and Tolerance.


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Trump Frees Europe From Angry Socialist Babies - Daniel Greenfield

by Daniel Greenfield

Why the European left fears Trump.

A protester waved a, "Everyone welcome" sign outside Blenheim Palace as President Trump arrived to attend a reception with Prime Minister May. 

She didn't mean Trump. Everyone but Trump was welcome in the United Kingdom.

The angry woman was part of a furious leftist mob that had hounded the President of the United States from his landing at Stansted Airport to his flight to Winfield House to the trip to Blenheim. 

A desperate marketing firm had paid the owner of Moat Farm in Stoke Mandeville, who has no opinion on Trump, to allow a 650 foot crop circle reading “F___ Trump” in Russian on his flight path. 

And that wasn't even the most desperate leftist protest stunt by the angry babies of socialism.

Pots and pants were banged outside Winfield House, the United States ambassador’s residence, at Blenheim a sign accused Trump of being the “World's #1 Racist” and Amnesty International hung up a giant banner calling him a, “Human Rights Nightmare” in an equally nightmarish yellow font.

Momentum, the anti-Semitic left-wing hate group, Stop the War's Trotskyists, the UK version of the pro-Farrakhan racist Women’s March, and the freeloaders of the Trades Union Congress will be part of a London mob of an estimated 50,000 preparing to protest President Trump’s existence. 

While the leftist mobs have been unleashed, pro-Trump protesters were leashed. A handful of supporters stood outside Blenheim Palace. One wore a clearly homemade “Britain Loves Trump” sign. The scrawled shapeless heart was in sharp contrast to the professionally designed and mass produced “Dump Trump” signs waved by grim-faced leftists on the verge of breaking into Labour’s, “The Red Flag.”

"The People's Flag is deepest red,” the white wine radicals who have never worked a day may start to sing in London. “Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer/We'll keep the red flag flying here."

The red flag is welcome, the British flag isn’t. Welcome Trump marchers and the Free Tommy supporters of imprisoned Jihad critic Tommy Robinson have been slapped with the Public Order Act. 

The anti-Trump marchers are a minority machine of massive lefty groups and internationally famous QUANGOs while the handful of pro-Trump supporters speak for a silent majority that is losing its country. And to them, Trump, like Brexit, represents the will of the people against the powerful elites.

The intersection between Trump and Brexit has always been a powerful one.

Brexit and Trump were both dismissed as marginal extremism by the media, but had the support of the people. The elites have struck back by accusing both Trump and Brexit of Russian conspiracy theories. The real sin of both the big ‘T’ and the big ‘B’ is that they reverse the leftist course of history which is meant to run away from nations and into mass borderless conglomerations like the EU or NAFTA. 

As Prime Minister May stands accused of betraying Brexit, Trump’s visit is an unwelcome reminder that it is possible for leaders to listen to the people, instead of to the smart set and its media monarchies. 

President Trump has been accused of attacking Europe by challenging the usefulness and legitimacy of outmoded international groupings like the EU and NATO. But he isn’t attacking Europe; he’s liberating it from its dogmas and bureaucracies, from red flag waving QUANGOs and mandatory government media. 

The transatlantic relationship had fossilized into an arrangement where American firepower protected European socialism and the American economy financed European international organizations. The WTO, the IMF and the World Bank were built on the backs of American workers. The multi obsessions of Europe’s leftist elites were embraced by Democrats from FDR to JFK, from Clinton to Obama. 

Europe got a free ride, but its individual nations, with the exception of Germany, lost out. Industries collapsed, jobs vanished and the welfare states only bred malaise and misery. By the time the wholesale Islamic invasion of Europe was underway, its working class cities and towns were even worse off than their American Rust Belt counterparts while their farmers had been reduced to tourist attractions.

The pro-Trump marchers come from the same working class as Tommy Robinson. They’re worlds away from the angry students working on degrees in ethnoecology and waving mass produced placards.  The two Britains that collided over Brexit are clashing once again over Trump. One is the borderless Britain of the QUANGO, the transnational red flag and the Muslim migrant. The other is fighting for its life.

Trump is a powerful symbol of people power. And that symbol raises fear and hope in the UK.

People power has largely died out in Europe. It has come to mean lefty toffs pretending to be working class while protesting for higher fees on the middle class to fund bigger subsidies for themselves. It’s luvvies pushing fake social media campaigns for more diversity on the BBC. It’s Jeremy Corbyn dazedly stumbling between terrorist rallies and student radical meetings. But that’s not people power. Trump is.

It’s not powerful lefties screaming marketing slogans. It’s people taking on their power. 
And that is what terrifies European elites.

The EU is beleaguered by a tide of populists rising against the perfect storm of mass migration and Eurocratic rule. Some of these populists are phonies, frauds and hacks. But others are real. In times past, it was fashionable to dismiss them as irrelevant cranks. But now one is the leader of the free world.

As Trump continues his odyssey, his presence gives hope to the oppressed citizens of Europe.

Trump haters in the UK and America aren’t protesting a man, but an idea. The Beast, the massive presidential limo, rolling through the streets has a new master. And the right side of history no longer points its compass needle to multinational organizations and useless university degrees. As Marine One flies over Britain while red-faced reds scream futile insults at the sky, carve obscene crop circles, and beat pots and pans in the street, they know that an unstoppable wave of change is breaking over Britain. 

Despite what Bernie Sanders will tell you, socialism has failed in Europe. Its blight isn’t as obvious to American tourists as it is in Cuba, Venezuela or North Korea, but it has, to paraphrase Thatcher, taken the socialists of London, Berlin and Brussels longer to run out of other people’s money.

And the other people’s money includes American money.

Americans can no longer subsidize the social experiments of socialism or fund European organizations that the Euros won’t pay for out of some misguided sense of multilateral manifest destiny. 

This isn’t an insult. It’s an opportunity.

The European nation-state, once the backbone of western civilization, cannot rise again as long as it’s dependent on the United States. The cycle of dependency and loathing expressed at its best and worst between the US and the UK is dysfunctional and cannot last. Trump’s message is that it’s ending.

A nation cannot respect itself or respect others until it is independent of them. Brexit is the first step, but not the last, to the rebirth of the Britain whose new day will light a fresh blaze of national glories. 

The media has made much of the ‘Angry Baby’ anti-Trump balloon to be flown over London. 

The real angry babies though won’t be found riding in the Beast. The angry babies are the fuming protesters, perpetual students protesting austerity, furious union workers who never work, government activists and retired leftists recapturing radical nostalgia, all fearful of the responsibilities of freedom.

The angry babies will follow Trump across Britain. They will miss as much work as it takes. Leaping up and down, they will howl as Air Force One takes off leaving the angry socialist babies behind.

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam.


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Story of a Foiled Islamist Terrorist Attack - Majid Rafizadeh

by Majid Rafizadeh

My message to those who continue to appease the Islamist state of Iran -- such as many Europeans, (here, here and here) -- is that you are supporting a terrorist regime that is determined to terrorize your countries.

  • You [Europeans] are supporting a terrorist regime that is determined to terrorize your countries.
  • You are supporting a regime that does not hesitate to commit some of the worst human rights abuses inside its own country, and abroad.
  • Where is your sense of decency and respect for human rights that you boast about so often?
Tens of thousands of Iranians, and non-Iranian human rights defenders from all across the world, recently gathered at a Free Iran rally in Paris, France, to further peace and extend human rights to every person. European, American, and Middle Eastern leaders, as well as many other influential people participated, including former Canadian foreign minister John Baird and other international leaders.

Suddenly, according to Reuters, an Iranian diplomat, along with six other individuals, was arrested in Europe over a plot to commit a terrorist attack at that rally.

First of all, please imagine the plot these men had in mind for their terrorist attack; it parallels so many other attacks that have occurred. If those men had been successful in this attack, many more people, including international leaders, could have been injured or killed.

Secondly, the Islamist state of Iran apparently orchestrated the attack with the intent to kill. Should not this plan, even though it was aborted, be considered an act of terrorism and war against other nations and governments? Should this planned attack not urge European leaders to stop their policies of appeasement policies toward the Islamic Republic of Iran?

Third, if you have been following how this news item has been unfolding on various media outlets, you have reason to be concerned. Many waited far too long after initial reports by organizations such as Reuters, Euronews and the Guardian, to begin their own reports about the planned attack. This is information that should have been made available immediately. At the very least, it might have to generate the outrage needed to stop such terrorist attacks from continuing in the future, rather than having many media outlets seen as protecting the world's largest exporter of terrorism, Iran, from possible criticism. More importantly, this failed act of terrorism should lead governments around the world to be more careful about what is truly going on inside Iranian embassies and consulates in their countries. The Islamist state of Iran has shown that it uses ​its embassies in foreign countries as spy and terrorist cells. Recently, Kuwait expelled 15 Iranian diplomats after they were convicted of a running a terror cell there.

This again highlights the tendency of so many apologists for Iran's leaders -- not its people -- to be somehow soft on the Iranian regime. Why is it, when the Iran is listed as the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism? Why is it, when the ruling mullahs are ranked top in the world when it comes carrying out more than half the executions the world over, including those of children? Why would anyone want to shield or appease a government guilty of crimes against humanity?

This is not the first time that Iran has committed a terrorist attack against other nations. In 1994, it carried out the bombing of a Jewish community center in Argentina, which is still under investigation.

Examples of Americans killed by Iran's leadership include the suicide bombing in Lebanon that killed 241 American servicemen (220 Marines, 18 sailors, and three soldiers); the Khobar Towers bombing, the bombing of the USS Cole with the direct support and involvement of Hezbollah, Al Qaeda and Iran, as well as participation in the 9/11 attacks on the US mainland in 2001.

Pictured: U.S. and Saudi military personnel inspect the damage to Khobar Towers near Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, following the terrorist bombing of the building on June 25, 1996. (Photo By Getty Images)

Intriguingly, still under investigation, an Iranian MP recently leaked that the Obama administration had granted American citizenship to 2,500 Iranian citizens "to please" the Iranian regime. Who, if any, are these people who were granted citizenship -- the regime's spies and agents who are now going to live among us for decades? Why should the U.S. "please" any regime that is built on the slogan of "Death to America"? Why would a US president commit such an act -- if he did -- to satisfy the demands of an Islamist and terrorist regime?

These are questions that every Westerner should be ready to ask his politicians.

President Donald Trump is correct that the U.S. should stand against the aggressive and destructive behavior of the Iranian regime, or any other. To those that would seek to appease the Iranian regime, I put myself forward as a prime example of why this must not continue to happen.

If Iran's terrorist attack had been successful, countless people would have been killed. My message to those who continue to appease the Islamist state of Iran – such as many Europeans, (here, here and here) -- is that you are supporting a terrorist regime that is determined to terrorize your countries. You are supporting a regime that does not hesitate to commit some of the worst human rights abuses inside its own country and abroad. Where is your sense of decency and respect for human rights that you boast about so often?
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Dr. Majid Rafizadeh is a business strategic and advisor, Harvard-educated scholar, political scientist, board member of Harvard International Review, and president of the International American Council on the Middle East. He has authored several books on Islam and US Foreign Policy. He can be reached at Dr.Rafizadeh@Post.Harvard.Edu


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