Saturday, October 1, 2011

Jordan is Palestine: Arieh Eldad’s Two-State Solution


by Mark Tapson

With a petition for Palestinian statehood presented before the United Nations last week, the issue of the disputed right to the land of Israel seems to many to be on the verge of an historic, if unsatisfying and controversial, resolution. But Dr. Arieh Eldad, a Member of Knesset and chairman of the Jewish nationalist Hatikva party, insists that the root of the issue is not territorial, and thus any peace plan based on the concept of dividing the land is destined for failure.

In his pamphlet titled simply “Jordan is Palestine,” Eldad writes

Dividing the land of Israel west of the Jordan into two states – Israel and a Palestinian state – has become the only political plan accepted for international and domestic (Israeli) discourse. This, despite dozens of failures in trying to implement it during the past ninety years. Every failed attempt has been accompanied by bloody conflict and/or war.

Recently Eldad – also chief medical officer and senior commander of the Israel Defense Forces Medical Corps and a Brigadier-General in the IDF (Reserves) – expressed his iconoclastic opinions in a speech at Temple Ner Maarav in Encino, northwest of Los Angeles. Also entitled “Jordan is Palestine,” his presentation put forth what he calls the “simple truth” that the Jews, and not the Arabs, have an historic right to the land of Israel. “I’m all for ending the occupation,” he said. “We must end the occupation. Of course, I’m referring to the Muslim occupation of the land of Israel, starting in the seventh century.”

So yes, there is certainly a territorial component to the problem, Eldad acknowledges. But, he explained, falling back on a medical analogy that reflects his profession, “We have misdiagnosed the conflict. It is a religious war. It’s a clash of ideologies. It’s not a territorial conflict.”

Eldad gives an example of this clash of ideologies in a FrontPage Magazine contribution entitled “A Story of How Deep the Palestinians Have Sunk into the Moral Abyss.” A surgeon specializing in the treatment of burn victims, Eldad was instrumental in establishing the Israeli National Skin Bank in Jerusalem, the largest skin bank in the world, which stores skin for everyday needs as well as for wartime or mass casualty situations. He relates the true story of a Palestinian woman given medical attention there after her own family burned her for some transgression of “honor”:

One day she was caught at a border crossing wearing a suicide belt. She meant to explode herself in the outpatient clinic of the hospital where they saved her life. It seems that her family promised her that if she did that, they would forgive her.

This is only one example of the war between Jews and Muslims in the Land of Israel. It is not a territorial conflict. This is a civilizational conflict, or rather a war between civilization & barbarism.

In his presentation last week he offered another example of the religious root of the conflict. Many thousands of Palestinian teachers, he said, work in the education system of UNRWA (the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees),

and the only thing [the students] learn is to hate the United States, to hate Israel. If you open a math book of the fourth grade of a Palestinian school, you learn that “if a shahid, a martyr, on a bus can kill fifteen Jews, how many Jews can be killed by three martyrs on a train?” This is the kind of mathematics they learn in school.

Eldad’s solution?

Any alternative plan should be based on the fact that the Palestinians have their own state already in Jordan, a kingdom – in which the Palestinians are at least 75% of the residents – created after the British Mandatory land of Israel was divided into two. The plan should focus on resolving the regional solution by settling the Arab refugees in Jordan and other Arab countries that absorbed Palestinian refugees after the War of Independence in 1948…

Israel would exercise sovereignty over all territory west of the Jordan, receive exclusive authority over security issues in all areas of sovereignty, since Israel could never accept the existence of an army from another country west of the Jordan, with airspace sovereignty and full control of external borders…

The Plan “Jordan is Palestine” is the only approach that can handle conflict without endangering the very existence of the State of Israel.

There are four major elements of his plan: 1) recognition of Jordan as a Palestinian country; 2) the closure of UNRWA and the creation of a plan for the settlement of Arab refugees in Jordan, under the auspices of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which has a track record of successfully resettling tens of millions of refugees around the world; 3) Israeli and international guarantees of a continued Hashemite rule in Jordan, and 4) the application of Israeli law in Judea and Samaria.

If we remember that the main driving force of the Arabs in this conflict is Islam, the Jordan River border will not solve the conflict. But this plan will create a national state for Palestinians, who will be able to fulfill at least some national desires, and it will be a state whose very existence does not endanger Israel. The Jordan border will establish a clearly defensible border.

In addition to offering these recommendations, Eldad also pulled no punches last week when offering his opinion of Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu. Eldad says that after Netanyahu’s humiliating treatment at the hands of Obama earlier this year, in which the President simply left the Prime Minister to mull over his demands while Obama abandoned him for dinner, Netanyahu exhibited exactly the same characteristics as a soldier afflicted with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Eldad decried Netanyahu’s willingness to bend under “extreme pressure” from the White House; he challenged him to answer the unilateral Palestinian declaration of statehood with unilateral annexation of Judea and Samaria.

This is typical of Eldad’s bold, politically incorrect assertions. A year ago he called for the assassination of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, comparing him to Hitler. And unlike other politicians, Eldad does not sugarcoat the future. Because the Israeli-Arab conflict is religious and not territorial, he claims, there will not be peace in the Middle East. “I don’t promise peace. I promise containment of the conflict.”

Mark Tapson

Source: http://frontpagemag.com/2011/09/30/jordan-is-palestine-arieh-eldad%e2%80%99s-two-state-solution/

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

Pakistan’s Terror Treachery on Trial


by Rick Moran

Outgoing chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, caused a ruckus in both Washington and Islamabad when he stated flatly before the Senate Armed Services Committee that the Taliban-supported terrorist group Haqqani was “a veritable arm” of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI). Although this didn’t come as a surprise to those following the US-Pakistan saga, what was stunning was the fact that he uttered the charge on the record — a first for the US government. The United States has been complaining to the Pakistani government privately for years about the duplicity and treachery of the ISI as they support the Afghanistan Taliban and the Haqqani terrorist network as a matter of state policy. However, actually charging the ISI with collusion in attacks on Americans escalated the tensions between the two countries to historic levels.

The Pakistani government reacted angrily to the charges and thousands took to the streets around the country to protest against what they perceive as American threats to deal with the Haqqani network on their own. The government also went out of its way to praise China as an “all-weather friend” as a reminder to the US that they have a few cards to play in the region as well.

The State Department sought to distance itself from Mullen’s remarks even while putting the finishing touches on designating Haqqani a foreign terrorist group. Why this hasn’t happened before is due to the fading hope that the terrorists could play a meaningful role in peace talks between the Afghanistan government and the Taliban. Recent attacks against our embassy in Kabul and our soldiers at a NATO outpost by the terrorists would seem to have dashed whatever forlorn hope was harbored in the State Department that Haqqani could be relied upon as a partner for peace.

Meanwhile, the Obama White House tried to tone down the rhetoric, hoping to bridge the chasm that has suddenly opened between the two countries by refusing to endorse Mullen’s remarks. And Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met for several hours with Pakistan’s foreign minister last week and emerged saying the right things about “cooperation” and “vital strategic interests.”

But unlike past dust-ups over border incursions from Pakistan into Afghanistan by the Taliban and Pakistan’s perceived lack of aggressiveness in fighting terrorists in the rugged Northwest Frontier Provinces, the underlying contradictions in US-Pakistani relations are in the open, and both governments feel the need to defend themselves.

What are those contradictions? At bottom, the question that must be asked of Pakistan is: are they friend or foe?

Ever since the take down of Osama bin Laden in an al-Qaeda safe house 60 miles from the capitol Islamabad, relations have been steadily deteriorating. But despite the perfidy of the Pakistani military and the ISI, a break in relations would only assist the terrorists and destabilize Afghanistan even more than it is now. However, this “escalation” by the Pakistani military in directly countenancing attacks on US citizens must be dealt with and condemned or there simply is no hope in going forward with the Pakistanis on any reasonable basis.

Pakistani commentator Aqil Shah, writing in Foreign Affairs, cheered Mullen’s comments, calling them “the most direct and daring official U.S. indictment of the Pakistani military to date,” and pointed out that the Pakistani military’s game has a lot to do with their concerns about India gaining a foothold in Afghanistan:

Ideally, the military would like Afghanistan to become a relatively stable satellite dominated by Islamist Pashtuns, which are much less likely than more secular Pashtuns to make irredentist claims on Pakistan’s own Pashtun regions, or bow to Indian influence. The military’s worst-case scenario would be an Afghanistan controlled or dominated by groups with ties to India, such as the Northern Alliance, which it fears would permit New Delhi to continue activities that are hostile to Pakistan even after the United States leaves the region.

Admiral Mullen made some other interesting comments at that senate hearing as well. He said, “With ISI support, Haqqani operatives planned and conducted that truck bomb attack” on September 10 that killed 5 and wounded 77 coalition soldiers. Mullen added, “We also have credible evidence that they were behind the June 28th attack against the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul and a host of other smaller but effective operations.”

The State Department leaked to the Washington Post: “Adm. Mike Mullen’s assertion last week that an anti-American insurgent group in Afghanistan is a ‘veritable arm’ of Pakistan’s spy service was overstated and contributed to overheated reactions in Pakistan and misperceptions in Washington.”

What “misperceptions” could there be? An arm of the Pakistani government is colluding with terrorists to kill Americans. To most, that would seem a straightforward problem with which our government should be dealing. David Goldman (aka “Spengler”), writing on his blog at PJ Media, quotes another unnamed diplomat saying, “The administration has long sought to pressure Pakistan, but to do so in a nuanced way that does not sever the U.S. relationship with a country that American officials see as crucial to winning the war in Afghanistan and maintaining long-term stability in the region.”

Goldman adds:

The Pakistanis, in short, continue to murder Americans with impunity by threatening us with their own failure. It’s the geopolitical equivalent of the scene in Blazing Saddles in which the black sheriff intimidates a lynch mob by holding a gun to his own head and threatening to shoot himself.

The Pakistani military’s response to Mullen’s comments and the support he received from the Congress and notable pundits for his accusations has been sharp and without precedent. Not only has the Pakistani military angrily dismissed the charges made by Mullen, the it has flatly refused an American request to go after the Haqqani network in North Waziristan, while cozying up to China at the same time.

The civilian government, racked by corruption and seemingly powerless to control the military, was less direct in its criticism. It is trying to turn the issue into a question of nationalism and sovereignty, appealing to the people’s anti-Americanism and patriotism. Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar said at the UN that “Pakistan’s dignity must not be compromised.” And thousands of protesters poured into the streets across the country on Tuesday chanting anti-American slogans and burning American flags. A speaker at one of the protests said, “We warn US not to indulge in any misadventure with us, or the whole nation will stand united to defend our country.”

To tap into this sentiment and build support, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani will chair an all-party conference on Thursday to come up with a position on fighting terror and the course of future relations with the US. This will give an opportunity for the politicians to posture against America while fanning the flames of patriotism and nationalism. How that will quiet the situation remains to be seen.

Some analysts believe the rupture in relations will last for years, that the inability of the Pakistani government to control the military in the foreseeable future means that no matter what the administration of President Zardari says about combating Haqqani, al-Qaeda and the Afghan Taliban, the military and ISI will continue to use terrorists to further their goals.

Others believe that the relationship was flawed to start with and that a final break is inevitable. Writing in Foreign Policy, Dan Twining sums up one possible future of US-Pakistan relations where the two countries are no longer allies:

Such an approach would require the United States not to leave Afghanistan to Pakistan’s designs but to keep a significant deployment of U.S. troops in place to deter and defeat Islamabad’s efforts to renew the sphere of influence it enjoyed there when its Taliban allies were in power. (Naturally, this would be harder to do if Pakistan refused us access to its territory to resupply our forces in Afghanistan). It would call for the CIA to cease cooperating with ISI, which it continues to rely on for access to the region, on the grounds that our fundamental goals are incompatible. It would suggest doubling down on our relationship with India, including supporting a greater Indian strategic, political, and economic presence in Afghanistan (which would be welcomed by most Afghans) as a stabilizing force in a troubled country. It would require us to convince Beijing not to fill the vacuum left by the withdrawal of American patronage towards Pakistan; China would need to pursue approaches that complement ours rather than continuing to provide unqualified support to its revisionist, increasingly radicalized ally.

It seems clear that relations between America and Pakistan have entered a new phase. Whether it will lead to an eventual break as Mr. Twining envisions remains to be seen. But it appears that the US will no longer tolerate a supposed ally colluding in the killing of its soldiers and citizens. There will be consequences going forward for Pakistan and it is time they were told that in no uncertain terms.

If this comes to pass, we’ll have Admiral Mullen to thank for it.

Rick Moran

Source: http://frontpagemag.com/2011/09/29/pakistans-terror-treachery-on-trial/

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

Terror Plot Foiled


by Matt Gurney

Boston-area man Rezwan Ferdaus, 26, has been arrested and indicted on charges of plotting a terrorist attack on the U.S. Capitol Building and the Pentagon. Ferdaus, an American citizen — born in America, no less — is alleged to have intended to fly remote control airplanes, purchased from hobby shops, into the targets. It was his apparent hope that the remote control toys — the poor man’s Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, in this case — would carry explosive devices into the targets, setting them ablaze. As the buildings were evacuated, Ferdaus allegedly hoped to fire into the crowds with assault rifles and grenades.

Should these charges be proven in court, it will be a major victory for U.S. counter-terrorism efforts. But those very same efforts are under attack by those who see closet Islamophobes behind every wiretap and sting operation. The arrest of Ferdaus could prove to be not only a win for the United States in the war on terror, but for America’s peaceful Muslims.

From what is known so far, the detection and arrest of Ferdaus is a major achievement for U.S. law enforcement. Prior to his arrest on terrorism charges, Ferdaus’s only brush with the law had been for a high-school prank where he and friends cemented doors to their school shut. When he radicalized is not yet known. But, apparently after Ferdaus began seeking fellow jihadists online, the FBI began to monitor him.

Indeed, it has been reported that over the last several months, Ferdaus had dealings with FBI agents that he believed were Islamists set on attacking America. Ferdaus, a physics graduate, designed detonators that he provided the agents, and was told these had been smuggled to Iraq and used to kill U.S. soldiers, much to Ferdaus’s delight. Ferdaus then began to request weapons and supplies from his FBI “allies.” He received six AK-47s, several grenades and 25 lbs. of what he believed was C4 plastic explosive. It was then that he was arrested.

This is classic police work. A suspect is identified, contacted, and allowed to incriminate himself before an arrest is made and without public safety being threatened. This is how child pornographers, drug smugglers and gun runners are identified and caught. It’s how stolen goods are traced. Don’t let the modern tools fool you — cellphones, Internet cafes and social media notwithstanding, any 19th-century detective worth their salt would recognize and applaud the kind of work that the FBI put into this case.

Such methods are still controversial for some, but absolutely necessary. Not every terrorism case will benefit from a major break such as the one that benefited Canadian police in 2006. In that case, a home-grown cell of Canadian Islamists were planning a series of bomb and gun attacks on the financial centre of Toronto and the Parliament buildings in Ottawa. A patriotic Canadian Muslim, who became aware of the plan and was appalled, gave up the group. A police sting operation very similar to the one that captured Ferdaus was initiated after the plot came to light, and the attack was averted.

Much of the time, however, the race against terror plots at home will involve determined, focused police work, using every legal and technical resource available to law enforcement agencies. We cannot assume that terror plots will destroy themselves from within. Groups like the Council on American-Islamic Relations will call such investigations illegal or Islamophobic. Indeed, CAIR’s director of communications, Ibrahim Hooper, suggested that the Massachusetts bust itself was untoward because it was “initiated by the FBI.” If illegality is evident, it will surely be brought up before the court and duly considered. As far as the Islamphobic argument goes, it holds no water. Actively seeking out and neutralizing threats to national security before they strike protects America’s peaceful Muslims.

Admittedly, it might not always seem that way — it’s not surprising that 52% of Muslim-Americans feel singled out by the terror programs of law-enforcement agencies. But the same Pew Center poll that reported that figure also reported that 21% of American-Muslims felt there was support for extremism within their community, and a large plurality — 48% — felt that the Muslim-American community leaders were not doing enough to combat that problem.

Into that vacuum, law enforcement must step. It is always regrettable when a citizen is tainted by the radical actions of a member of their community, but it is preferable to the alternative. Ferdaus is allegedly part of a worrying trend, where homegrown threats seek to conduct jihad in the West in support of global aims. On top of the Boston and Toronto plots discussed above, there was also last year’s Portland, Oregon bomb plot, where American citizen Mohamed Osman Mohamud sought to strike the city’s annual Christmas-tree lighting. There is also the case of U.S. Army private Naser Jason Abdo, who sought to follow in the footsteps of Major Nidal Hasan and murder American troops at or near Fort Hood, Texas.

Good police work and a little luck helped prevent all these attacks. It wasn’t just lives that were spared in each case. It was the reputation of America’s Muslim community, who inevitably (and largely unfairly) would take the blame in the aftermath of any homegrown attack. That is something America’s Muslim leaders should consider before decrying successful police operations that weed out the dangerous extremists in their midst.

Matt Gurney

Source: http://frontpagemag.com/2011/09/30/another-terror-plot-foiled/

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

A Prayer for 5772


by Caroline Glick


American Jews.jpg
Upon his return to Ramallah from New York, Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas was greeted by a crowd of several thousand well-wishers. They applauded him for his speech at the UN. There, Abbas erased Jewish history from the Land of Israel, denied Israel's right to exist and pledged his commitment to establish a racist Palestinian state ethnically cleansed of all Jews.

Many of Abbas's supporters in Ramallah held posters of US President Barack Obama. On them Obama was portrayed as a monkey. The caption read, "The First Jewish President of the United States."

The fact that the Palestinians from Fatah and Hamas alike are Jew-hating racists should surprise no one who has been paying a modicum of attention to the Palestinian media and general culture. Since the PA was established in 1994 in the framework of the peace process between Israel and the PLO, it has used the media organs, schools and mosques it controls to spew out a constant flow of anti-Semitic propaganda. Much of the Jew-hating bile is indistinguishable from anti-Jewish propaganda published by the Nazis.

As for their anti-black bigotry, it is enough to recall the frequency with which Condoleezza Rice was depicted as a monkey and a devil in the Palestinian and pan-Arab media during George W. Bush's presidency to realize that the racist depiction of Obama was not a fluke. Moreover, and more disturbingly, it is worth recalling that like its fellow Arab League members, the PA has strongly supported Sudan's genocide of black Africans in Darfur.

To a degree, the willingness of African-Americans to turn a blind eye to Arab anti-black prejudice is understandable. Since the mid-1960s, oil rich Arab kingdoms led by Saudi Arabia have spent hundreds of millions of petrodollars in outreach to African-Americans. This outreach includes but is not limited to massive proselytization efforts among inner city blacks. The combination of a strong and growing African-American Muslim population and a general sense of amity towards Muslims as a result of outreach efforts contribute to a willingness on the part of African- Americans to overlook Arab anti-black racism.

Unlike African-Americans, Jewish Americans have been targeted by no serious outreach campaigns by the likes of Saudi Arabia and the rest of the Arab world. To the contrary, as Mitchell Bard documented in his book The Arab Lobby: The Invisible Alliance That Undermines America's Interests in the Middle East, these Arab nations have spared no effort in anti-Israel lobbying in the US. Among the Arab lobby's goals is to undermine the legitimacy of American Jewish lobbying on behalf of Israel.

Furthermore, the anti-Jewish atmosphere in the Arab world is far more comprehensive and poisonous than its anti-black prejudice. A Pew global opinion poll from 2008 showed that hatred of Jews is effectively universal in the Arab world and overwhelming in non-Arab Muslim states. In Jordan, Egypt and Lebanon, between 95 and 97 percent of respondents expressed hatred of Jews. In Indonesia, Turkey and Pakistan between two-thirds and three-quarters of respondents expressed hatred of Jews.

Jew-hatred among Muslim minorities in the West is less overwhelming. But Muslim antagonism towards Jews vastly outstrips that of the general populations of their countries. According to a Pew survey from 2006, while 7% of British citizens express unfavorable views of Jews, 47% of British Muslims admit to such views. In France, 13% of the general population admits to harboring negative feelings towards Jews and 28% of French Muslims do. Likewise in Germany, 22% of the general population acknowledges anti-Semitic views and 44% of German Muslims do.

More dangerously, the quantity of anti-Semitic attacks carried out by Muslims in the West far outstrips their percentage in the general population. According to Pew data, in 2010 Muslims comprised just 4.6% of the population of the UK but carried out 39% of the anti-Semitic attacks. Moreover, according to the Times Online, in 2006, 37% of British Muslims claimed that British Jews are legitimate targets for attacks. Only 30% of British Muslims disagreed.

WITH THE overwhelming data showing that throughout the Arab world there is strong support for organizations and regimes which advocate the genocide of world Jewry, the American Jewish community could have been expected to devote the majority of its attention and resources to exposing and combating this existential threat. Just as the American Jewish community dedicated itself in the past to causes such as the liberation of Soviet Jewry and fighting neo-Nazi groups in the US and throughout the world, it could have been expected that from the Anti-Defamation League to the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, that major American Jewish groups would be using the financial and human resources at their disposal to defend against this violent, genocidal hatred.

But this has not occurred. Many leading American Jewish organizations continue to be far more involved in combating the currently relatively benign anti-Semitism of the Catholic Church and Evangelical Christians than confronting the escalating dangers of Muslim anti-Semitism.

According to a Gallup poll released last month, 80% of American Jews have favorable views of American Muslims. Seventy percent believe that they are not supportive of al-Qaida. These data indicate that American Jews are second only to American Muslims in their support for Muslim Americans. Indeed 6% more American Jews than American Muslims believe that American Muslims face prejudice due to their religion.

American Jewish championing of American Muslims is disconcerting when compared with American Jewish treatment of the philo-Semitic Evangelical Christians. Matthew Knee discussed this issue in depth in a recent article published at the Legal Insurrection website.

In a 2003 Pew survey, 42% of American Jews expressed antagonism towards Evangelical Christians. In a 2004 American National Election Study, Jews on average rated Evangelical Christians at 30 out of 100 on a "feeling thermometer," where 1 was cold and 100 was hot.

A 2005 American Jewish Committee survey found that Jews assessed that following Muslims, Evangelical Christians have the highest propensity for being anti-Semites. And yet, in the same 2004 American National Election Survey, Evangelical Christians rated Jews an average of 82 on the 1- 100 feelings scale. Evangelical Christians rated Catholics at 80.

Consistent survey data show that levels of anti- Semitism among Evangelical Christians is either the same as or slightly lower than the national average. According to a 2007 ADL survey, the US average is 15%.

There is a clear disparity between survey data on anti-Semitism among various American ethnic groups and American Jews' assessment of the prevalence of anti-Semitism among the same groups. The AJC survey found that American Jews believed that 29% of Evangelicals are largely anti- Semitic. They assessed that only 7% of Hispanics and 19% of African-Americans are anti-Semites.

As it works out, their perceptions are completely incorrect. According to the 2007 ADL survey, foreign born Hispanics, and African-Americans, harbor significantly stronger anti-Semitic views than the national average. Twenty-nine percent of foreign born Hispanics harbor very anti-Semitic views. Thirty-two percent of African-Americans harbor deeply anti-Semitic views.

Like Jews, Hispanics, African-Americans and Muslims vote disproportionately for the Democratic Party. Evangelical Christians on the other hand, are reliably Republican. A 2009 survey on US anti- Semitism conducted by the Institute for Jewish and Community Research in San Francisco found that Democrats are more likely to be anti-Semitic than Republicans.

The Gallup survey from last month showing American Jews' deep support for American Muslims is of particular interest because that support stands in stark contrast with survey data concerning American Jewish perception of Muslim American anti-Semitism.

THE 2005 AJC survey showed that American Jews believe that 58% of American Muslims are anti- Semitic. That is, American Jews are Muslim Americans' strongest non-Muslim defenders at the same time they are convinced that most Muslim Americans are anti-Semites.

What can explain this counterintuitive behavior? And how can we account for the apparent pattern of incorrect Jewish perceptions of anti-Semitism among Evangelical Christians on the one hand and fellow Democrats on the other hand?

As Knee argues, the disparity may very well be due to partisan loyalties. The Democratic Party has openly engaged in fear mongering and demonization of Evangelical Christians in order to maintain Jewish loyalty to the party. Knee quotes then-Democratic national chairman Howard Dean's statement that "Jews should feel comfortable in being American Jews without being constrained from practicing their faith or be compelled to convert to another religion."

As for Muslims, Knee cites a press release from the National Jewish Democratic Council from March attacking Congressman Peter King's hearings on the radicalization of American Muslims. In the press release, the council claimed that such hearings "can and will" harm religious tolerance in America. That is, the council implied that by investigating the radicalization of American Muslims - and its concomitant transformation of American Muslims into supporters of the genocidal Jew-hatred endemic among radical Muslims worldwide - Rep. King is endangering Jews.

If American Jews are most concerned with being able to maintain their loyalty to the Democratic Party, then it makes sense for them to wildly exaggerate Evangelical anti-Semitism. It is reasonable for them to underestimate African-American and Hispanic anti-Semitism, and ignore the higher rates of anti-Semitism among Democrats than among Republicans. Moreover, it makes sense for them to follow their party's lead in failing to address the dangers of global Islamic anti- Semitism.

None of this makes sense, however, if American Jews are most concerned with defending Jews - in America and worldwide - from anti-Semitic sentiments and violence.

On Wednesday evening we begin our celebration of the New Year. Rosh Hashana marks a period of soul-searching among Jews. We are called upon at this time to account for our actions and our failures to act and to improve our faithfulness to our people, to our laws and to God.

It is possible that American Jews are simply unaware of the disparities between reality and their perceptions of reality. But it is the duty of all Jews to educate ourselves about the threats that reality poses to ourselves and our people.

At the UN last week, Abbas received accolades and applause from all quarters for his anti-Semitic assault on Jewish history and the Jewish state. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's remarks were applauded by Israel-supporters in the audience in the General Assembly.

As Israel is increasingly isolated and Jews worldwide are under attack, it is my prayer for the coming year that the American Jewish community will come to terms with a difficult reality and the choices it entails, and act with the majority of their fellow Americans to defend Israel and combat anti-Semitism in the US and throughout the world.

Originally published in the Jerusalem Post.

Caroline Glick

Source: http://www.carolineglick.com/e/2011/09/a-prayer-for-5772.php

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

Exclusive: The Inside Story Behind the Awlaki Assassination


by Steven Emerson

Note: This story is based on reporting with sources knowledgeable about the Awlaki operation, including three law enforcement and intelligence officials.

Anwar Al Awlaki, killed Friday morning in an American strike in Yemen, has been on the U.S. radar for several years, ever since, as one U.S. official stated, he turned from "inspirational to operational." He was believed to be behind the Nigerian "underwear" bomber who tried to ignite his explosives planted on his body as his airplane was landing in Detroit. And he was believed responsible for the cargo bomb plot targeting the United States last fall.

U.S. intelligence officials, aware of other planned attacks, had arrested several Muslim American converts who returned here after "studying" in the Sudan. Most of their time was spent on terrorist training and learning from Awlaki and his advisors about the precepts of jihad and Islam. Intelligence officials believe that "hundreds" of American and European converts to Islam, along with other indigenous Muslims from Islamic countries, have trained with Awlaki, making many of them "ticking time bombs."

Awlaki lived in the southern Yemen province of Shabwa, an area beyond the reach of Yemen's military and central government. Much of Yemen is like the Wild West, with no central governing authority. The numerous tribes settle disputes among themselves. Awlaki came from the Awalik tribe.

Intelligence gathered last year from Yemeni authorities and from debriefings with several American converts who returned to the United States after training with Awlaki, helped narrow Awlaki's location to a 100 square mile area. He moved at night, often in convoys of armored SUVs in order to prevent U.S. drones and surveillance from determining which vehicle he was in. But the drones, which have advanced in the ability to recognize faces on the ground, hovered above the area where Awlaki was believed to be. Electronic intelligence – including telephone intercepts –also were used, although Awlaki was said to be careful in limiting his use of electronic communication, aware that he could be tracked that way.

In the past several months, American drone operators were confident they had identified Awlaki as he moved from among a series of underground bunkers. An initial drone missile targeting him was fired at an al-Qaida training camp but missed him.

Meanwhile, U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agents collected as much personal data about Awlaki as they could from his extended family living in western countries. For example, he had an ex-wife living in Ireland that no one knew about until a close relative living in the United States identified the family tree for agents in early January. The relative proved to be a goldmine of information about Awlaki's siblings, parents, wives, and children.

Intelligence officials learned about the American relative in January through other Yemeni expatriates living here who knew her. She agreed to cooperate and provided extensive information about close relatives living either with him, elsewhere in Yemen, or in different parts of the world. Telephone numbers belonging to a close relative living in Yemen's capital Sanaa that the American relative provided to U.S. intelligence officials proved the most critical.

The relative knew that Awlaki called that number. The National Security Agency (NSA) quickly was able to triangulate the phone numbers and determine almost exactly where Awlaki was when he called the Sanaa number. The American relative also provided information on other Awlaki relatives who apparently had direct contact with Awlaki, either through email or other electronic means. That knowledge helped track other communication and confirm Awlaki's whereabouts.

Up to a dozen additional drones were dispatched to the southern part of Yemen in a search for the exact coordinates of Awlaki's location. Drone operators felt that Awlaki was most vulnerable during the day whenever he was outside moving from one hideout to another. Officials also had recruited Yemeni informants to pose as Awlaki students to try to provide intelligence on Awlaki's location. But the drones, which could not be seen by the naked eye, hovered nonstop in a massive effort to cover large parts of southern Yemen and ensure that Awlaki had not left. He knew the United States wanted to assassinate him, as evidenced by the lawsuit brought by his father, Nasser Al-Awlaki—a U.S. citizen living in Yemen. The suit challenged the legality of a presidential order to kill Awlaki, an American citizen, without due process.

In the last month, drone operators became convinced they had identified Awlaki in various convoys. Previous strikes were considered but withheld out of concern of causing too many civilian casualties. Although the Yemen central government claims that it was in charge of the operation, the reality is that the United States acted independently.

A recent intelligence tip indicated that Awlaki was going to be traveling Thursday or Friday in a multi-SUV convoy. By early Friday afternoon Yemen time, the drones had clearly identified Awlaki's convoy—which apparently was distinct from other traveling cars in the poor region of his province—providing a clear video to drone operators in Virginia. President Obama had already given the orders to kill Awlaki if a clear shot was available.

The president was notified on Thursday about Awlaki's expected travel via convoy and that drone operators likely would have a clear shot at him. The president authorized the strike and was joined overnight by aides to monitor the video that was beamed from the drones. At one point, believed to be around 4 a.m. in Washington, the drones broadcast images of Awlaki's convoy traveling openly and without any cloud cover. Several missiles were fired. At least two of the vehicles were destroyed. Within hours, Yemen's military has secured the area and taken DNA samples from several of the remains of the bodies in the decimated vehicles. The samples were flown to Washington this morning and matched with Awlaki's relatives living here.

One source offered a slightly different version of events, saying that the relatives' DNA samples were within the U.S. Embassy in Yemen. In either case, forensic scientists compared the DNA samples and confirmed the match.

In addition, two other top lieutenants to Awlaki were also killed. One was Samir Khan, also an American, but the name of the other top assistant could not be obtained.

There was jubilation at the CIA, the Pentagon and the White House as the leading global al-Qaida recruiter had finally joined his mentor, Osama bin Laden. The FBI and Department of Homeland Security issued a warning to field offices around the country to be on guard against any revenge attacks. The charismatic English speaker and leader of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula had been eliminated.

Steven Emerson

Source: http://www.investigativeproject.org/3210/exclusive-the-inside-story-behind-the-awlaki

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

No Hijab, No Peace: Analyzing the Rye Playland Incident


by David J. Rusin

In a controversy sure to fuel the accommodation debate, 15 people were arrested on August 30 at Rye Playland, an amusement park in Westchester County, New York, following a melee that involved Muslims objecting to the prohibition of head coverings on certain rides. One young woman's refusal to remove her headscarf apparently led to altercations among Muslims, who then scuffled with security officials. Their legal cases have been adjourned until October.

Despite claims of discrimination, the park's rules on headgear are neutral with respect to faith and have a single goal. "It's a safety issue on rides. If it's a scarf, you could choke," explained Peter Tartaglia, Westchester deputy parks commissioner. Indeed, a Muslim woman was strangled to death last year in Australia when her head covering got caught in the axle of a go-kart.

Five reflections on the hijab fracas at Rye Playland:

  • Once again we see the no-win situation that often results when multiculturalism and safety concerns collide: enforce the appropriate dress code and risk accusations of bias, or loosen the rules and risk accusations of negligence. Other recreational venues, including an Australian water park and a Connecticut roller rink, have faced this same dilemma.

  • Claims that the headgear policy is selectively applied to discriminate against Muslims are undercut by an August 31 article in the Journal News. Describing how the park returned to normal the next day, it notes that two Jewish boys were asked to remove their yarmulkes prior to boarding a roller coaster. They did so without causing a scene.

  • Headscarves are not the only Islamic attire that could prove dangerous on fast-moving rides. Baggy garments, such as those worn by Muslim women photographed at Rye Playland, may require regulation as well.

  • Islamists have been known to orchestrate incidents for the purpose of gaining sympathy and concessions (e.g., the "flying imams"). With the Muslims' visit having been arranged by a chapter of the Muslim American Society (MAS), an Islamist group closely linked to the Muslim Brotherhood, this possibility must be considered. Especially curious: organizers had been told about park policy in advance, yet MAS fliers for the event made no mention of headgear restrictions, thus ensuring plenty of irate Muslims that day.

  • Behold the noxious influence of groups like CAIR on Muslim minds. "This all happened because we're Muslim," charged one of the attendees, demonstrating the Islamist view that anybody who says no to a Muslim must be a bigot. True to form, CAIR responded to the brouhaha by lamenting the "Islamophobia" that allegedly targets covered women.

Amusement parks should set rules based on what they believe to be necessary for the protection of their patrons. Tell Rye Playland (contact here) to keep putting safety first — and ignore those Islamists who put agitation first.

David J. Rusin

Source: http://www.islamist-watch.org/blog/2011/09/no-hijab-no-peace-analyzing-the-rye-playland

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

What Does Iran's Supreme Leader Really Want?


by Yossi Melman

Do the religious tenants of Islam prohibit or permit the use of nuclear arms by Iran in the event of a war? A new study offers some troubling answers.

At the International Atomic Energy Agency General Conference in Vienna last week, once again the focus of discussion was the nuclear program of Iran, which refuses to stop its uranium enrichment and cooperates only partially with IAEA inspectors.

This sort of cat-and-mouse game, with its familiar rules, has been going on for almost a decade, while in the meantime, step by step, Iran advances its nuclear program, overtly and covertly.

Ahmadinejad

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Represents radical messianic elements in the Shi’a community − the ones that might use the nuclear option.

Photo by: Getty Images

For their part, intelligence agencies around the world continue to gather information, and to monitor and attempt to sabotage, delay and disrupt this progress. The international community is having trouble interpreting the Iranians' actions and predicting when Tehran will actually have nuclear weapons (the current assessment in the Mossad, IDF Military Intelligence and the CIA is that that will be in 2015 ). At the same time, in Iran a bitter but secret debate is raging over whether to assemble nuclear weapons or make do with nuclear capacity - i.e., having the know-how and the means to manufacture such weapons within a short time, if necessary.

The argument in Iran crosses ideological boundaries: Not all of the conservatives are in favor of a attaining nuclear option, and not all reformists are opposed to it. Furthermore, the dispute is not only political, military and economic in nature, but also religious. The religious dimension was the subject of an interesting analysis in a recent study by Michael Eisenstadt and Mehdi Khalaji, of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. Eisenstadt, a former military analyst with the U.S. Defense Department, and Khalaji, an Iranian-born specialist on Shi'a religious law, gave their study a provocative title: "Nuclear Fatwa: Religion and Politics in Iran's Proliferation Strategy."

It is necessary to look at the religious side of the nuclear program, the authors say, because Iran is a theocracy, in which religion plays a key role in politics. Basically, their article takes issue with those who believe Tehran's claims that it is not aiming to develop nuclear arms because Islam forbids weapons of mass destruction.

The researchers, who do not conceal the difficulty of obtaining reliable information to back up their claims, also discuss the attitudes of two Iranian leaders, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and his successor Ali Khamenei, toward WMD systems. In the Iran-Iraq War of 1980-1988, Iranian troops were attacked by chemical weapons, but the Islamic Republic did not respond with an non-conventional counterattack. Why? Iran did not have chemical weapons at the time, but Khomeini was opposed to using them in any event, on the grounds that Islam does not permit targeting noncombatant civilians.

Toward the end of the war, Khomeini changed his mind, fearing that Iraq's leader, Saddam Hussein, would use gas not only against soldiers but also against citizens in cities and villages. So Iran developed a limited quantity of chemical weapons, intended for deterrent purposes.

Years later, in 2003, att [it] was reported that Khamenei, who succeeded Khomeini in 1989, had issued a fatwa banning the production and use of all types of WMD. From that day to this, Iran's supreme leader, as well as other senior government figures, has repeatedly maintained that his country is not striving to obtain nuclear weapons, because Islam forbids it.

But the authors of the study warn against putting much stock in this attitude of Khomeini and Khamenei. First of all, they emphasize, Islamic tradition, in general, and Shi'ite tradition, in particular, contain justifications for using any means to harm those who do not believe in Islam. Secondly, fatwas are issued according to unique circumstances and can be modified.

Furthermore, Shi'ite law permits deception and dissimulation in matters of life and death, and when such tactics serve the Islamic community, the umma. "Such considerations have almost certainly shaped Iran's nuclear diplomacy," the researchers state, but they go on to point out that Iran is not an exception in this regard. Every country that has produced or tried to produce nuclear weapons - such as India, Pakistan, South Africa, Iraq, Libya, Syria, and according to foreign reports also Israel - has resorted to tactics of concealment, denial and deception.

Final arbiter

As for Khomeini, the authors remind us that prior to his death, he approved the fatwa that authorizes destruction of a mosque or suspending observance of the most sacred duties if it is in the vital interests of the regime. Khomeini thereby ranked the state above religion in everything pertaining to the core principles of domestic and foreign policy.

In Iran the supreme leader is the final arbiter. But the researchers say that the balance of power within the regime has been shifting in recent years. In their opinion, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad represents the most radical messianic elements in the Shi'ite community - the ones that might use the nuclear option in a war against Israel and the United States, to hasten the arrival of the Mahdi, the Shi'ite messiah.

However, they state that the Iranian regime has not shown any signs to date of an irrational policy; on the contrary, it has exercised moderation and prudence. "From its inception, decision-making in the Islamic Republic has been influenced by the tension between the absolute imperatives of religion and the pragmatic concerns of statecraft," they write.

However, this has changed in recent years, they add. What has been perceived in Iran as the successes of the "resistance" doctrine of Hezbollah and Hamas, the growing political messianism of Ahmadinejad, and the failure of international efforts to halt the nuclear program - all this has "produced a more assertive regime that may be more inclined to take risks." That, they explain, will hamper efforts by the United States and its allies "to deter and contain a nuclear Iran." To put it in less academic terms, they do not rule out the possibility that if Iran had nuclear weapons, it might use them.

By its very nature, such a categorical study has prompted reactions from Iranian researchers. Some have pointed out that the authors are fellows at a research institute that is identified with the pro-Israel lobby AIPAC, is considered a clear-cut supporter of Israel, and has broad ties to senior officials in the Israeli defense establishment. For instance, the Shin Bet chief Yoram Cohen and former IDF Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi are among the long list of fellows who have worked at the institute. Others have noted that the authors ignore the power struggle going on in recent months between Khamenei and Ahmadinejad, which could have implications for the nuclear issue.

Another criticism of the study centered on the West's double standard with regard to Islamic rulings. Why was Khomeini's fatwa years ago against the writer Salman Rushdie taken seriously while Khamenei's fatwa against weapons of mass destruction has been taken lightly?

But even without drawing far-reaching and pessimistic conclusions, the chances of halting Iran's nuclear race are not great. In the assessment of most experts, economic sanctions, aggressive diplomacy, or secret sabotage operations such as injecting a virus into the computers of nuclear facilities, won't get the job done.

Meanwhile, the option of a military attack, which has a certain chance of keeping Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons, has no support in Western public opinion. A recent poll by the German Marshall Fund of the United States found this year that 76 percent of Americans are concerned about the possibility of Iran obtaining nuclear weapons, compared to 86 percent last year. Only 6 percent of those polled in 12 European Union countries, and 13 percent of American respondents, favored a military response.

Yossi Melman

Source: http://www.haaretz.com/weekend/week-s-end/what-does-iran-s-supreme-leader-really-want-1.387175

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

France Won't Rule Out Military Strike on Iran


by Chana Ya'ar

France warned late Tuesday it may consider a pre-emptive military strike against Iran to stop the Islamic Republic from creating a nuclear weapon of mass destruction.

French Ambassador Gerard Araud said in a panel discussion in New York, “If we don't succeed today to reach a negotiation with the Iranians, there is a strong risk of military action.” He did not specify who would carry out the strike.

“It would be a very complicated operation,” Araud went on,” according to a report by the AFP news agency. “It would have disastrous consequences in the region,” he warned. “All the Arab countries are extremely worried about what is happening,” in the Iranian nuclear development program, Araud said.

He added that it has become increasingly clear that the Islamic Republic has no intention of negotiating a resolution to the impasse over its uranium enrichment program.

Iran has insisted that its nuclear development technology is geared to peaceful domestic use only. However, it has severely restricted the United Nations' International Atomic Energy Agency from access to its facilities.

European negotiators have concluded that Iran does not wish to negotiate with the international community, said Araud, and is “moving forward” with its nuclear development program despite. Several rounds of sanctions against the Islamic Republic by the U.N. Security Council, aimed at persuading its government to end its uranium enrichment program, have failed to budge Iran from continuing its production.

“We have tried everything. Not a stone has been left unturned,” Araud said.

Ahmadinejad has claimed the country needs 20 percent enriched uranium for a medical reactor to produce isotopes for cancer treatment. However, Western intelligence agents have said the country already has enough uranium for that purpose, and that any additional uranium would be used to produce weapons, according to AFP.

The Iranian president claimed in an interview last week with the New York Times that Iran would halt production of low-enriched uranium if the international community were willing instead to provide it to Tehran. However, Iran recently moved its uranium enrichment facilities to underground bunkers, setting off alarm bells in both Europe and the United States.

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, and former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert before him, each have repeatedly warned the international community of the dangers posed by allowing Iran to continue its nuclear development programs unchecked. Each round of sanctions against the Islamic Republic, however, took months to pass, due to opposition from Russia and China, both of whom are permanent members of the Council.

Chana Ya'ar

Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/148371#.TodiclnpWNN

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

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Existential Threat from Iran


by Stuart Kaufman

Last week, I attended a symposium that clarified for me exactly why Iran is the single greatest existential threat to the United States and the free world today.

The symposium panel consisted not of some off-the-wall Cassandras, but rather of some the soberest most serious thinkers in the field of national security. Among them were:

I put these names up front to demonstrate that this is not just me trying to stir up the pot.

The reason why the danger is so clear and imminent is because of a confluence of two facts that make up the perfect storm:

1. The nature of the version of Shiite Islam to which the government of Iran adheres; and

2. a natural phenomenon called EMP (electromagnetic pulse).

I will deal with them one at a time.

1. The nature of the version of Shiite Islam to which the government of Iran adheres

The mullahs in Iran practice a particularly virulent brand of Shiite Islam. They believe in the return of 'the 12th Imam,' known as the Mahdi. The Mahdi can best be understood as the Shiite messiah. They believe that when the Mahdi returns he will usher in a 1000-year age of justice, and that the Mahdi will come in response to a condition of chaos and destruction. The added fillip to this is that they believe that they themselves can cause this to happen by creating the necessary chaos and destruction (remember, I am not arguing that this should make sense to you. The point is that it makes sense to them).

2. EMP (electromagnetic pulse)

EMP is a natural phenomenon created by the fact that electrons can be "shocked" into spinning out of control, interacting with other electrons. (Please continue reading. This is very simply presented and easily followed). Therefore, a single nuclear weapon exploded at high altitude above the United States will interact with the Earth's atmosphere, ionosphere, and magnetic field to produce an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) radiating down which will "short-circuit" whatever electric grid it encounters. In simple terms, if a single nuclear bomb is detonated at the appropriate altitude above the mid west, it will DESTROY the entire electric grid of the US, thus cutting off the lifeblood of the US economy. Just to be clear, if this happens, the electricity system won't be capable of being turned back on. It will be finished. Think of it, no lights, no manufacturing, no banking system, no.... nothing - all will be destroyed! There is no way that the United States can survive such an attack as a functioning society.

Now, ask yourselves if you think that those who fall under factor #1 above (Mahdist Shiite Muslims), in order to create the conditions for the return of the Mahdi, would hesitate to resort to factor #2 above (creating an EMP by detonating a nuclear weapon)?

Remember, this is not me saying this. This is General McInerney, General Chrosniak, Reza Khalili, etc. who are saying this.

The US government accepts this as fact, but they don't make a big deal about it because they don't want to create a panic. They are also concerned that the Jon Stewarts and Stephen Colberts of the world will satirize it into oblivion (remember "Star Wars").

The possibility of weaponizing EMP is a problem that will be with us for a very long time, but at a relatively nominal cost we already have the technology to "harden" the electric grid of the United States. This (national security) is a function given by the Constitution to the Federal government, as opposed to (among other things) subsidizing public broadcasting or distributing cheese. We need to act now to put this protection in place.

The immediate, existential situation of Iran can and must be addressed immediately. Fortunately, the mullahs do not have the support of the people of Iran. Furthermore, the vast majority of the Iranian people (this according to the panelists at the symposium) are not Mahdists. If we had supported the revolt in Iran two years ago, we might very well have a friendly Iranian government in power now. It is not too late. There is an incipient revolutionary underway in Iran. We must help that revolution to occur.

There is so much more to say on this subject. For more information, I encourage you to go to: http://www.empactamerica.org/index.php.

EMPactAmerica is comprised of an extraordinary group of people. They are not asking for anything from you except your attention.

Please consider what you have just read, become aware of the seriousness of the peril in which we find ourselves, and let others know.

Stuart Kaufman

Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2011/09/the_existential_threat_from_iran.html

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

Abbas Gives the Finger to Obama


by Khaled Abu Toameh

By rejecting both of US President Barack Obama's requests -- to avoid a United Nations bid for Palestinian Statehood and to return to the negotiating table -- the Palestinian Authority President, Mahmoud Abbas, is now hoping to join the bandwagon of the few Arab and Muslim leaders who have dared to stand up to the Americans.

For many years, Abbas's Arab and Muslim enemies had condemned him as a "puppet" in the hands of the US.

But his decision to dump the US will certainly help him get rid of that image. Abbas is well aware of the fact that anti-American sentiments remain as high as ever in most of the Arab and Islamic countries. This was the reason he decided that it would be unwise of him to continue swimming against this tide.

By distancing himself from Washington, Abbas has moved closer toward the Arab world's anti-US camp, led by Iran and consisting of Hamas, Hizbullah and other radical groups.

It is no surprise, therefore, that some Hamas leaders have come out in support of Abbas's decision to spit in the face of the Obama administration. In a sign of improved relations between the two parties, Abbas's Fatah faction has now decided to resume unity talks with Hamas in the hope of forming a new government in the near future.

The campaign of incitement against Obama and the US will also whip up anti-American sentiments in the Arab world and could lead to endangering the lives of US citizens and troops in the Middle East.

For weeks, the Obama administration tried to persuade Abbas to abandon his plan to seek full membership in the UN for a Palestinian state, to no avail.

Even threats to cut off financial aid to the Palestinian Authority and veto the motion at the UN Security Council did not stop Abbas from going ahead with his statehood bid.

Nor did the hundreds of millions of dollars that were granted to Abbas's administration in the West Bank over the past few years help prevent the statehood plan.

Further, Abbas has not only turned his back on the Americans; he is now also whipping up anti-American sentiment among Palestinians and the rest of the Arab world.

The verbal assault on Obama and the US began long before Abbas submitted his application for statehood to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Speaking to journalists in Ramallah, top Abbas aides accused Obama of "surrendering to Zionist pressure" because of his repeated attempts to dissuade Abbas from embarking on a unilateral move at the UN.

The aides also accused Obama of being influenced by "Zionist and pro-Israel" advisors. One official in Ramallah even went as far as calling for a boycott of US envoy Dennis Ross under the pretext that he was "pro-Israel." Ross and another US envoy, David Hale, had both been dispatched to Ramallah to try to persuade Abbas to agree to the unconditional resumption of peace talks with Israel.

Since Abbas delivered his speech at the UN last week, the Palestinian Authority has stepped up its criticism of Obama and the US. On instructions from senior Palestinian officials, demonstrators took to the streets to chant anti-US slogans and burn portraits of Obama in scenes reminiscent of mass anti-American protests by supporters of Iran and Hizbullah.

Abbas and his aides are now hoping that the Arab and Islamic countries would compensate them for the loss of financial aid from the US, which has been giving the Palestinian Authority -- more than $450 million a year. The Palestinians believe that the Arab and Muslim leaders are so afraid of the "Arab Spring" that they will be forced to start funding the Palestinians.

The Saudis were the first to prove this theory correct. Last week, they informed the Palestinian Authority of their decision to channel $200 million in urgent aid to the Palestinians. It now remains to be seen if other countries will follow suit. If that happens, Obama can expect still another finger from Abbas.

Khaled Abu Toameh

Source: http://www.hudson-ny.org/2454/abbas-gives-finger-to-obama

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

Helping Islamists Take Syria


by Ryan Mauro

The U.S. is calling on Syrian dictator Bashar Assad to step down and is increasingly persuaded that the uprising against his rule will be victorious. As the world wonders who will replace the regime, an Islamist-dominated group called the Syrian National Council is being embraced by Turkey and the Obama administration State Department. Genuine secular forces, meanwhile, are being left to the wayside as they struggle to save their country from both Assad and the Muslim Brotherhood.

The Syrian Muslim Brotherhood has stated, “We have a desire to coordinate the position of the opposition.” With support from the Turkish government and a naïve U.S. State Department, it can achieve this objective. On September 15, opposition activists formed the Syrian National Council in Istanbul, the latest in a long list of umbrella groups to be formed since the uprising began.

Ammar Abdulhamid, a secular democratic activist based in the U.S., published a list of some of the members. Of the 71 named, 34 are Islamists. The Muslim Brotherhood has not officially joined the alliance, but many members of it have. The composition of the Syrian National Council is frightening other opposition groups who do not want Syria to become the next Gaza Strip. A leader of the leftist Kurdish Party said, “Turkey supports the Islamists in Syria and puts them out front. These Syrian opposition meetings in Turkey prevent the creation of a democratic, pluralistic Syria in which the rights of the Kurds are constitutionally protected and they are recognized as the second largest ethnicity in the country.”

Shockingly, the U.S. State Department and the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Hamas-tied front for the Muslim Brotherhood, are together supporting the Syrian National Council. On September 24, the Los Angeles chapter of CAIR held a townhall event featuring a member of the SNC and Frederic C. Hof from the State Department’s Office of the Special Envoy for the Middle East. This isn’t the first time the U.S. has supported the Islamist opposition in Syria. Files released by WikiLeaks show that the State Department funded the Movement for Justice and Development. The group split from the Muslim Brotherhood and was described in the files as “liberal, moderate Islamists” who sought to “marginalize” the Brotherhood.

Meanwhile, genuinely secular forces seeking to topple the Assad dictatorship are not embraced. European governments have urged these forces to unite in order to compete with the Islamists. On September 17, the Coalition of Secular and Democratic Syrians formed in Paris. “We are all against totalitarianism in any form, and that includes Islamist rule,” spokeswoman Randa Qassis declared.

Abdulhamid told FrontPage that real secular alternatives to the Syrian National Council exist and its influence is being exaggerated. “Opposition councils are now two dime a dozen, they have failed to bring unity or to form a working group worthy of the name. They have contributed to increasing schisms within the ranks of protest leaders inside the country,” he said.

The Reform Party of Syria, a U.S.-based secular opposition group, insists that the U.S. must reach out to the secularists to prevent the Islamists from taking control of the opposition. RPS estimates that only 20 percent of the Syrian population is Islamist. Dr. Barry Rubin, an opponent of democracy promotion, agrees, putting his estimate even lower at 15 percent. He feels the Islamists are unlikely to replace Assad. This is partially due to demographics. In Egypt, 90 percent of the population is Sunni Muslim. In Syria, it is 60 percent (the CIA Factbook puts it higher at 74 percent), with the rest being minorities who greatly fear Islamist rule. Many of the Syrian Sunnis are secular. For example, a Sunni cleric that supports the Coalition of Secular and Democratic Syrians insists that there must be separation of mosque and state.

The Assad regime has worked diligently to convince the West that it is the only alternative to Islamist rule in Syria. In 2006, the regime orchestrated riots in response to the Mohammed cartoons to make this point. It claims that the current uprising is an Islamist revolution led by terrorists. Protesters have rejected this accusation, chanting, “We want freedom, not Salafism.” Hanin Ghaddar of NOW Lebanon writes, “If that is accurate, why are they arresting liberal intellectuals and political activists, such as Suhair Atassi and Fayez Sarah? These two have nothing to do with Islamic fundamentalist groups.”

In this case, the enemy of my enemy is not my friend. Syrian dictator Bashar Assad is a ferocious enemy of the West with a huge amount of American blood on his hands. He is no friend, but neither are the Islamist elements who want to replace him with a Sharia state. If the U.S. fails to accurately distinguish ally from adversary, then the future of Syria belongs to the Muslim Brotherhood.

Ryan Mauro

Source: http://frontpagemag.com/2011/09/27/helping-islamists-take-syria/2/

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

Palestinian Death Cult


by Giulio Meotti

Israeli families are not paid rewards by their government when their relatives are killed. Israeli soldiers do not use children as shields when they initiate a firefight with terrorists. Israeli schools and summer camps don’t brainwash pupils to undertake violence against civilians. Israeli religious figures do not laud children who engage in terror operations.

So what cause, no matter how deeply held, can motivate the current Palestinian society to sacrifice its generations, its future, to the most horrible form of childhood molestation and child sacrifice? The way in which the Palestinian Authority educates children and society is a key indicator of its true intentions.

Convincing ordinary individuals to sacrifice themselves to kill the Jews is not easy, it requires subhuman ideas and institutions. The logo of the “Permanent Observer Mission of Palestine to the United Nations” – on their website and on top of their official statements at the U.N. – shows the Palestinian Authority’s claim to a Palestine that stretches throughout the entire historical entity of the former Palestine mandate, which had nothing to do with those who call themselves Palestinians today and everything to do with a national homeland for the Jewish people..

Palestinian Media Watch also revealed that Mahmoud Abbas chose an icon of genocidal anti-Semitism, the mother of four terrorists, one of whom killed seven Israeli civilians and attempted to killed twelve others, as the person to launch the statehood campaign with the United Nations.

In a widely publicized event, Abbas had Latifa Abu Hmeid lead the procession to the UN offices in Ramallah and hand over a letter for the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon. It is a measure of how deeply the ethos of martyrdom has penetrated Abbas’ policy, hailed for its “moderation”.

For as long as the PA continues to foment violence and promote hatred, the number of youngsters willing to blow themselves up or to slit Israeli throats will unfortunately continue to mount. The Palestinian Authority is still a font of incitement, spewing forth a stream of Holocaust denial, racial slurs, anti-Jewish epithets and glorification of terrorists.

Palestinian leadership now seeks self-determination at the United Nations, but its daily policy shouts to the world that even after statehood, the fight must continue against the Jews.

The proof is the series of dormitories, schools, streets, sports arenas and events named after about 50 different Palestinian mass murderers. There is no precedent in the history of humanity for this god of martyrdom.

Palestinian apologists and their supporters over the past decade always dismissed the importance of incitement. But Palestinian glorification of terrorism bears no resemblance to other forms of terror violence because it praise both the dismemberment of individual Jews and the total annihilation of the Jewish State.

Today the act of murdering Jews is glorified as the very highest form of political engagement. The root of this dark sentiment lies in the Arab all- consuming hatred of “the Jews”.

Unlike terrorists in other parts of the world, the Palestinian movement aspires to immortality and their violence is always “sacred”. Last year the Palestinian Authority named a town square near Ramallah for Dalal Mughrabi, who in 1978 directed the hijacking of two buses on the coastal road between Haifa and Tel Aviv which led to the murder of 37 Israelis, including 13 children. The terrorists fired indiscriminately at vehicles, killed hostages on board the bus and threw their bodies onto the road.

In 2010, the Palestinian Authority sponsored a youth fencing tournament in Jericho named after Abu Jihad, who masterminded the 1978 massacre.

Mahmoud Abbas then eulogized Abu Dauod, the mastermind of the massacre of 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics in 1972.

Abbas also handpicked five female recipients for the highest medal of heroism. Among them Amana Mona, who lured 16-year-old Israeli Ofir Rahum via Internet chats to a cruel death. Without telling anyone, Ofir put on his best clothes and took the first bus he could. The girl came to pick him up in Jerusalem. The Israeli boy didn’t even realize when the car entered Ramallah. It is difficult to describe what the Palestinians did to him. He was Jewish, poor, naïve and innocent.

A Palestinian Authority government complex was then built on a Ramallah street that is named after arch-terrorist Yahye Ayash, dubbed “The Engineer”. Who is this person who is hailed as a moral example by the Palestinians?

One day in October 1994, in Tel Aviv’s Dizengoff Street, a bus full of poor devout Jews, Russians or Ethiopians became a smoking wreck dripping with blood, scattering gray matter on the windows of the homes nearby, leaving a hand lodged in the branches of a tree. Pieces of human flesh landed on terraces and in trees.

Two years later another Ayash’s suicide bomber blew himself up in a crosswalk outside the Dizengoff Center. On the asphalt were the remains of a baby stroller. The streets were covered with Jewish corpses, some of them on fire. In the air was the acrid odor of burned flesh and hair.

Generations of PA Arabs are taught to see these terrorist operations as a way to “open the door to Paradise” for themselves and their families. It’s the highest level of paradise, the one reserved for prophets and saints.

Signs on the walls of Palestinian kindergartens currently proclaim their students as “the shaheeds (martyrs) of tomorrow”. Elementary school principals commend their students for wanting to “tear their (Zionists’) bodies into little pieces and cause them more pain than they will ever know”.

Terrorism is sanctified throughout all the PA areas. The streets are plastered with posters glorifying the suicide bombers. Children trade “martyr cards” instead of Pokemon cards. Necklaces with pictures of terrorists are very popular.

A compelling reason that PA Arab parents encourage their children to get involved and killed is the financial incentive offered to families of martyrs. The PA furnishes a cash payment – $2,000 per child killed and $300 per child wounded.

Issa Karake, the Palestinian Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs, last April visited the family of Hamas suicide-bomb mastermind Abbas Al-Sayed, awarding them an official, festive plaque, in celebration of the Passover massacre in Netanya. A soccer tournament has also been named after this suicide bomber. In the Park Hotel there was an enormous pool of blood. The blood of 30 innocent Jews who had wanted to celebrate Passover together that night.

PA leaders are still fighting to expunge an entire people – the Jews – from the face of the Middle East. Call it Palestinian Apocalypse.

Giulio Meotti

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