Friday, August 5, 2016

A Nuclear-Armed Caliphate? - William Kilpatrick




by William Kilpatrick


Erdogan is one giant step closer to doing what he has always wanted to do.


Reprinted from CrisisMagazine.com.

Much has been made of the Islamic State’s claim to the caliphate. But the Islamic State is fast losing ground in Syria and Iraq, and without a territorial claim, its claim to the caliphate is a shaky one. According to some sources, ISIS has already been preparing its followers for the fall of the caliphate.

Meanwhile, an Islamist power with a much better claim to the caliphate has been gathering strength. Whether the failed coup in Turkey was the real thing or whether it was staged, as some have claimed, President Erdogan’s hold over the Turkish nation has been immeasurably strengthened. As a result, he is now one giant step closer to doing what, some say, he has always wanted to do—namely, to re-establish the caliphate.

The last time the Muslim world had a caliphate, it was centered in Constantinople. The Turkish sultan (who was also the caliph) was the head of the Ottoman Empire—an empire that controlled far more territory than ISIS does or is ever likely to. Then in 1923, following the disarray left by the First World War, a secular government under the leadership of Kemal Ataturk came to power in Turkey and abolished the caliphate soon after.

To many in the Muslim world, this was a world-changing catastrophe. It flew in the face of Muhammad’s intention that mosque and state should be united, and it undermined the case for Islamic law. Moreover, the overthrow of the caliphate affected not just Turkey, but all of the Muslim world. In the late 1920s in Egypt, Hasan al-Banna founded the Muslim Brotherhood with the intention of reversing what Ataturk had done. The Brotherhood came close to doing this–at least in Egypt—in 2012 with the election of Mohamed Morsi as president. But Morsi showed his hand too early and was soon deposed by the military under General El-Sisi.

In Turkey, also, it was the military that acted as the guardian of the secular state. And so it remained until the election of President Recep Erdogan in 2002. Even then, Erdogan moved slowly in his efforts to re-Islamize Turkey. He gradually removed top military officers and replaced them with his own men; and he did the same with the police, the judiciary, and other key institutions.

By 2012, some twenty percent of the country’s generals were estimated to be behind bars. Then, with this month’s failed coup, Erdogan moved quickly to arrest some 3,000 members of the military and 3,000 members of the judiciary. In addition, his regime sacked 9,000 workers attached to the Interior Ministry. Within a week of the attempted coup, some 50,000 soldiers, police, judges, civil servants, and teachers had been suspended or arrested.

Erdogan’s power is now nearly absolute—not unlike the absolute power of a sultan. According to some, this has been his goal all along. One indication is that Erdogan has built himself a thousand-room presidential palace that is attended by guards dressed in Ottoman-era uniforms.

If Erdogan does try to establish a caliphate, where does that leave ISIS? Would they go quietly into the dark night of oblivion? Or would they find a place in the new caliphate?

As you may have noticed, alliances in the Middle East are constantly shifting. It’s not inconceivable that ISIS would someday pledge allegiance to a neo-Ottoman caliphate—although such an event might have to be preceded by the demise of their current caliph, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. The truth is, Erdogan has been something of a friend and benefactor of ISIS. As Caroline Glick observed in the Jerusalem Post:

Erdogan has turned a blind eye to al-Qaida. And he has permitted ISIS to use Turkey as its logistical base, economic headquarters, and recruitment center. Earlier this year, the State Department claimed that all of the 25,000 foreign recruits to ISIS have entered Syria through Turkey.

Turkey is also the gateway between Syria and Europe. It is through Turkey that the bulk of Muslim migrants flow into Europe. This gives Erdogan enormous leverage over the future of Europe—a continent which is already reeling from a flood of migrants and refugees. How is the leverage applied? In March, the European Union reached a deal with Turkey that would in essence turn Turkey into a buffer zone against further immigration. Here’s how Foreign Affairs summarized the bargain:

Turkey has agreed to act as a giant refugee holding center, keeping the millions of migrants fleeing conflict in the Middle East from reaching Europe and accepting those sent back from Greece. In exchange, the EU will pay Turkey three billion euros on top of the three billion pledged last November to help care for the refugees. It will also speed up the approval of visa-free travel to Europe for Turkish citizens and revive stalled negotiations over Turkey’s accession to the EU.

So Turkey will keep the Syrian migrants out of Europe as long as Turkish citizens are allowed almost unlimited access to Europe through visa-free travel. The net result is that the Islamization of Europe will continue. And, of course, there’s nothing to stop Turkey from opening up the refugee floodgate whenever it sees fit. Turkey’s control of Mid-East migration gives it the upper hand in its dealings with Europe.

The other part of the bargain is the revival of negotiations to admit Turkey to the EU. If Turkey is ever successful in that endeavor, it would spell game-over for Europe. If Erdogan wants to re-establish the caliphate, and if he is so keen on union with Europe, it is likely that he envisions Europe as part of the future caliphate. This is something that the Ottoman sultans dreamed of, but were never able to accomplish. But Erdogan might be able to pull it off. There is now a very large contingent of Turks in Germany who seem to bear more allegiance to him than to Germany. And all over Europe there exists a fifth column of active and potential Islamists ready to be activated. As for the other four columns, it’s worth keeping in mind that Turkey has the second largest army in NATO (the U.S. has the largest). And with many of the generals who coordinated with NATO now in jail, Turkey’s loyalty to NATO is very much in question.

There is one other factor to consider. During and after the coup attempt, Erdogan shut down Incirlik Air Base, which is home to 1,500 American soldiers as well as other NATO troops. The Turkish government cut off the base’s electricity supply, temporarily suspended flights, and arrested the base commander, General Ercan Van. The base reportedly houses 50 nuclear warheads. The bombs are controlled by the U.S. forces in Turkey, but could they by means sudden or gradual fall under the control of Turkey? And if they did, would the U.S. dare to do anything about it?

By many accounts, Erdogan is a true believer who, in his own way, is every bit as fanatical as the ayatollahs in Iran. The man who built a thousand-room palace for himself might well believe that a restored caliphate should possess all the weapons that befit a great world power. With Erdogan’s latest consolidation of power, an already dangerous world just became a lot more dangerous.


William Kilpatrick is the author of Christianity, Islam, and Atheism: The Struggle for the Soul of the West (Ignatius Press) and Insecurity (Post Hill Press). For more on his work and writings, visit his website, turningpointproject.com.

Source: http://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/263722/nuclear-armed-caliphate-william-kilpatrick

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the aut

I have a PERSONAL message for the Muslim father whose son was killed in Iraq - Allen West




by Allen West

Hat tip: Dr. Jean-Charles Bensoussan


--maybe you had no intention of using the platform provided to you as a teachable moment…but rather a politically-influenced opportunity for gain.


Everyone’s talking about the speech delivered by Mr. Khizr Khan, accompanied by his wife Ghazala at the DNC that focused on the loss of his son, U.S. Army Captain Humayan Khan. 

It appears things have devolved into such a level of immaturity relating to the speech that I believe there’s a need for a clear analysis of Mr. Khan’s address, and what he should have presented. 

First, let me offer my condolences to the Khan family for their sacrifice, as they are now an American Gold Star Family. Their son and I share an unbreakable bond. We both served our nation and, along with three other generations in my family, took the oath to support and defend our Constitution and served in combat zones.

Yes sir, Mr. Khan, I’ve read our Constitution and firmly recognize the preeminent responsibility of our federal government is to “provide for the common defense.” I also comprehend the relationship between the three branches of government…you know, separation of powers, checks and balances, coequal branches of government. 

I would offer a simple recommendation to Mr. Khan. Perhaps you should have asked President Barack Obama if he had read the Constitution — undoubtedly you would agree we have witnessed a few unconstitutional actions from him. 

And while you were at it, Mr. Khan, perhaps you could have asked Hillary Clinton about handling classified information — since I’m quite sure your son, Captain Khan, had at a minimum, a secret clearance. 

I don’t think your son would have been able to, well, have his “careless” mishandling of classified materials and information simply excused. Perhaps Mr. Khan, you could have addressed the necessity for high standards of honor, integrity, and character in a commander in chief. Also, I found it interesting Mr. Khan, that you and your wife, an American Gold Star family, would take the stage to support a sitting president and one desiring to be president, who had abandoned Americans in a combat zone and lied about it. 

I tend to believe that if alive, your son would consider that type of behavior abhorrent and deplorable. Or perhaps, as it seems, your speech was politically driven, and not based on principle? After all, you did take the stage before a crowd that disrespected a Medal of Honor recipient…is that cool with you? 

You see, I understand Mr. Khan, that your son and your family are Muslim and Muslims do indeed serve in our armed forces. But in the military I know, we do not celebrate that which divides, but rather that which unites. And what is it that unites us as Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines? It is service above self, commitment to something greater than the individual, and sacrifice for our country and comrades in arms. 

Now, let’s be honest Mr. Khan, those of us with knowledge could just as easily bring attention to SGT Hasan Karim Akbar and Major Nidal Hasan, both Muslims serving in the U.S. Army. Just as you celebrated your Muslim son’s sacrifice, there are others who could give testimony to their loss due to those Muslim soldiers — and I use lower case reference to them (soldiers) because they dishonored the oath and were traitors to our Code of Honor. Your son was not, but that had nothing to do with him being a Muslim: he was an American Soldier. 

So, Mr. Khan, since you had such an immense stage, what should you have addressed? You should have taken the time to explain how humbled and thankful you are to live in America. You should have mentioned how honored your son was and the pride you felt knowing he was serving your adopted country. You should have explained to America, and the world, what killed your son…the ideology of Islamism, Islamic fascism. 

You could have told all of us why it needed to be defeated and that we need a commander in chief who would not abandon Americans in combat, but ensure they were supported in order to defeat this scourge. 

Mr. Khan, you could have taken these words spoken by a proven courageous and resilient leader, Sir Winston Churchill, who has a U.S. Naval vessel named after him, and expounded upon them:
“How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries, improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live. A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement, the next of its dignity and sanctity. The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property, either as a child, a wife, or a concubine, must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men. Individual Muslims may show splendid qualities, but the influence of the religion paralyses the social development of those who follow it. No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science, the science against which it had vainly struggled, the civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome.”
And now we can all understand why Barack Obama had Churchill’s bust removed from the Oval Office. 

Those were the insightful, prescient, and relevant words of Sir Winston Churchill from the first edition of his book, The River War

Mr. Khan, this is what you should have addressed; it would have been so very well received. You could have told the world and defined the enemy that killed your son…instead my assessment is that you will be remembered as a political pawn. 

You could have taken the time to explain the words written by Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, dated March 28, 1786, to U.S. Minister of Foreign Affairs John Jay, reporting on their meeting with the Ambassador of Tripoli:
“We [Adams & Jefferson] took the liberty to make some enquiries concerning the ground of their pretensions to make war upon nations who had done them no injury, and observed that we considered all mankind as our friends who had done us no wrong, nor had given us any provocation. [Note they clarify “nations who have done them [i.e. Muslim Barbary States] no injury”] The Ambassador answered us that it was founded on the laws of their prophet [i.e. Mohammed]; that it was written in their Koran; that all nations who should not have acknowledged their authority were sinners; that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as prisoners; and that every Mussulman [Muslims] who was slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise.”
Mr. Khan, you had a moment to speak on history and provide us clarity and truth from a Muslim man who lost his son, an American Soldier, to Islamists. You could have clarified the difference between your son and SGT Hasan Karim Akbar and Major Nidal Hasan. That sir, to me, was a missed opportunity. 

Then again, maybe you had no intention of using the platform provided to you as a teachable moment…but rather a politically-influenced opportunity for gain. 

You, Mr. Khan, had the chance to be the face and voice of a Muslim family that stood with the fundamental principles and values of liberty, freedom, and democracy upon which this Republic was founded — in which you have found a home. 

You could have articulated how a 7th century savage and barbaric ideology inspired by a murderous warlord, psychopath, and, by modern day standards, a pedophile, was not a radical but the leader of a militant phase of Islam introduced after the 622 AD event referred to as Al Hijra. 

Mr. Khan, I grieve for the loss of your son. However, I grieve even more that you used his sacrifice and loss as nothing more than a damn politicized stunt. May God forgive you for it.


Allen West

Source: http://www.allenbwest.com/allen/personal-message-muslim-father-whose-son-killed-iraq

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the aut

Ministry warns: Hamas NGO scandal deeper than imagined - Rachel Kaplan




by Rachel Kaplan


Foreign Affairs Min. Director Dore Gold, after World Vision donation scandal: "More humanitarian aid organizations helping Hamas."



Foreign Ministry Director-General Dore Gold
Foreign Ministry Director-General Dore Gold
Hadas Parush/Flash90
 
Ministry of Foreign Affairs Director Dore Gold condemned the NGO World Vision's transfer of funds to Hamas.

In a published statement, Gold expressed his horror that "one of the largest charitable and humanitarian aid organizations in the world" gave "approximately $7.2 million to the military wing of Hamas...mainly to strengthen its terrorist arm."

That adds up to around 60 percent of the World Vision's annual budget for Gaza.

"Hamas is closely linked to the security apparatus of the Islamic Republic of Iran, which is seeking to spread its military influence through its Middle Eastern surrogates," explained Gold, denying suggestions that money given to Hamas was used humanitarian purposes.

"These funds were utilized to finance the digging of terror tunnels, the construction of military bases, and the purchase of weapons."

The global body of World Vision has denied any knowledge of wrongdoing. However, Israel revealed earlier today that local Gaza branch leader Mohammed El-Halibi was in charge of the operation. Gold estimates "that El-Halibi managed to transfer in the decade of his work at World Vision...tens of millions of dollars." "At the very least, that means there was no supervision of his activities.

Gold also warned that "the investigation revealed much information concerning additional figures in Gaza who exploited their work in humanitarian aid organizations and UN institutions, on behalf of Hamas."

Deputy Foreign Minister MK Tzipi Hotovely agrees, and thinks Israel needs to do more to protect both humanitarian organizations, and the people their they're trying to help. "Israel has known for a long while that Hamas is fed by the monies of 'human rights organizations.' Instead of improving the situation in Gaza and rebuilding, Hamas uses money which was intended for children and the needy to manufacture rockets and tunnels."

She continued: "It's important to tighten the controls over humanitarian organizations' donations, and especially to concern ourselves with whether the money is used for the purpose for which it was given."


Rachel Kaplan

Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/215997

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the aut

Arabs Must Turn a New Page with Israel - Fred Maroun




by Fred Maroun



"We must look at Israel not as foreign presence, which it is not, but as a unique and remarkable component of the Middle East that enriches the region".

  • The creation of such a Palestinian state under today's conditions is likely to result in a Hamas-dominated state that is violently hostile towards Israel. The Palestinian Authority must be transitioned into a peaceful and stable entity before it can be expected to run a state.
  • Binyamin Netanyahu recently suggested an approach to make the peace initiative work, but Arab League Secretary-General Nabil al-Arabi rejected it out of hand. This is not how harmonious relationships between nations are built.
  • "We must all rise above all forms of fanaticism, self-deception and obsolete theories of superiority." — Egyptian President Anwar el-Sadat, 1977.

This is part two of a two-part series. The first part examined the mistakes that we Arabs made in our interactions with Israel.

There is much that we can do to improve our relationship with Israel -- if we want to -- and there is good reason to think that it would be in both our short- and long-term interest if we did. The most critical change is in approach. Changing that would start to repair the foundation of the relationship and would provide a basis for mutual respect and trust, without which any solution would remain fragile.

Understand Israel

We must see the real Israel rather than the monstrosity that Arabs have been brainwashed to see. We are so afraid to call Israel by its real name that we refer to it as the "Zionist entity". The name is "Israel"; as written in Haaretz, "Israel has been the name of an ethnic group in the Levant going back at least 3200 years".

The standard Arab narrative about Israel is that it is the result of Western colonialism. This language has also been adopted by many, who claim that "settler colonialism that began with the Nakba ... in 1948", implying that all of Israel is a colony. This claim is not true, and no healthy relationship can be built while one side keeps repeating lies about the other.

Israel is the nation-state of the Jewish people, a people with a long and complex history on that land. Attempts to kill them and exile them came from many sources over the centuries, including the Assyrians, Babylonians, Romans and the Crusaders. These are historical facts.
Israel's then Prime Minister Golda Meir said in 1973, "We Jews have a secret weapon in our struggle with the Arabs -- we have no place to go". No matter how much pressure Arabs put on Jews to leave, they are not going anywhere; in fact, that pressure only hardens their resolve. Israel is their home.

We must look at Israel not as foreign presence, which it is not, but as a unique and remarkable component of the Middle East that enriches the region.

Not our enemy

We must stop calling Israel our enemy. We deliberately chose to make Israel our enemy when we attacked it, rather than accept the existence of a tiny Jewish state in our midst.
Israel (including the annexed Golan Heights and East Jerusalem) is only 19% of British Mandate Palestine (which included Jordan), on which Britain promised in 1924 to build a "Jewish National Home". Israel is so small that it would have to be duplicated 595 times to cover the entire Arab world.

We made self-defeating decisions in our relationship with Israel, based on the belief that it is our enemy and that we can only deal with it though force -- but the tiny state of Israel is not a threat to the Arab world.

Every year, Palestinians hold rallies, often violent ones, to commemorate the Nakba ("catastrophe"), which is name they give to the Arab loss in the war of 1948/49. They carry keys, symbolizing the keys to homes that their ancestors fled during that war. This commemoration, like much of the Arab rhetoric about Israel, is a one-sided view that demonizes Israel while it absolves Arabs of all responsibility for starting and continuing a conflict that resulted in decades of violence as well as displacements of both Arabs and Jews.
This false narrative does not leave much room for peace with Israel. How can peace be acceptable to Arabs who are repeatedly fed the false narrative that everything is Israel's fault, when, in fact, "everything" is not "all Israel's fault"?

Admitting mistakes is never easy, but without admitting them, we are weaving a contrived narrative that contradicts historical facts. Building a positive future requires accepting that the past is gone and cannot be restored.

Despite the Holocaust, Germany is today one of Israel's closest friends, but this was possible only because Germany admitted its moral failure. Although our refusal to accept Israel is not morally equivalent to the Holocaust, it was undeniably a moral failure, and moving past it would allow us to establish constructive relations with Israel.

Resolving the Palestinian Question

For a successful resolution of the Palestinian question, we must understand the few fundamental issues on which Israel cannot compromise. At present, the Arab world, and particularly the Palestinians, shows so little understanding of Israel's fundamental issues that the Israeli public's faith in peace negotiations is low. As reported in the Jerusalem Post, "most Israelis (67.7%) do not believe that negotiations will bring peace in the coming years and less than a third (29.1%) think it will ever yield such a result".

Israel's ability to remain a Jewish state and a haven for Jews worldwide is its most basic existential necessity. Without it, Israel would be only a name. For this reason, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu stated unequivocally that there is "no room to maneuver" on the Palestinian claim of a "right of return" for the descendants of Palestinian refugees. It may be unreasonable to expect relatively small and weak countries like Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan to absorb all the refugees residing there, but rich Gulf countries have the ability to help. If Europe can absorb millions of Muslim refugees, why could we not do it too?

A second existential necessity for Israel is its need for defensible borders, as explained in an extensive report. Israel has been defending its very existence against Arab attacks for seven decades. It has been attacked from all sides using all methods imaginable, from missiles to suicide belts to tunnels. Israel does not see the pre-1967 armistice lines as defensible, as was explained as far back as 1977 by then Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, widely considered a pro-peace moderate.

A third fundamental point is Jewish access to holy sites, starting with the most important one, the Old City in East Jerusalem. Jews see their win in East Jerusalem in the war of 1967 not as a conquest, but as the liberation and reunification of their historic home since the time of King David, ca. 1000 BCE. Although Israeli governments, both in 2000 and in 2008, offered to give up control over part of Jerusalem, one should not assume that a similar offer will be likely in the future. In June of this year, PM Netanyahu pledged that, "The idea of a divided, split, wounded city is one we will never return to." Other issues such as borders, compensation for refugees, removal of some settlements, and the level of Palestinian sovereignty appear to be negotiable. Netanyahu further stated, "Israel wants peace. I want peace. I want to renew the diplomatic process to achieve peace".

But we Arabs must understand that this can only be possible within the constraints of the three fundamental issues.

The Arab League's Peace Initiative

A peace initiative was endorsed by the Arab League in 2002 and again in 2007, but this initiative falls short in two ways, first in its substance and second in its form.

The initiative demands that Israel go back to the pre-1967 armistice lines. Not only does Israel not consider those borders defensible, but during the fifty years that elapsed since then, Israel has built large settlement blocks in the West Bank. We Arabs had previously expelled the Jews who were native to that land, and it is unrealistic to expect that Israel would agree to victimize its own Jewish citizens yet again.

The initiative declares that Arab states reject "all forms of Palestinian patriation which conflict with the special circumstances of the Arab host countries", implying that Israel and the new Palestinian state would be responsible for absorbing the descendants of all Palestinian refugees. For the new Palestinian state, it would be a huge burden to add to the task of building a new state, as it would mean an increase to its population from 6 million to 9 million. This would leave Israel to receive the refugees, which it will not do.

Equally unrealistic is the initiative's causal reference to "the establishment of a Sovereign Independent Palestinian State". The creation of such a state under today's conditions is likely to result in a Hamas-dominated state that is violently hostile towards Israel. The Palestinian Authority must be transitioned into a peaceful and stable entity before it can be expected to run a state.

The biggest problem with the Arab League's peace initiative, however, is the way that it was delivered. It was presented as a fait accompli and was thrown at Israel without discussion. The Arab League did not even respond to then Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's offer to attend the 2002 Arab League summit. More recently, Netanyahu suggested an approach to make the peace initiative work, but Arab League Secretary-General Nabil al-Arabi rejected it out of hand. This is not how harmonious relationships between nations are built, especially after decades of Arab animosity towards Israel.

There was no need to write this document at all. All that the Arab League had to do was to declare that Arab states are open to making peace with Israel, accept Sharon's offer to attend, then send a delegation to Israel as a sign of goodwill. There would be no commitment in such a gesture, but it would show that the Arab League is serious. This is how Egyptian President Anwar El Sadat approached peace with Israel.

Sadat in His Own Words

We should take inspiration from and follow the lead of Sadat, an Arab leader who took a bold step towards peace and achieved a peace agreement that even the Muslim Brotherhood government of Egypt felt compelled to respect 35 years later.


We should take inspiration from and follow the lead of Sadat, an Arab leader who took a bold step towards peace and achieved a peace agreement that even the Muslim Brotherhood government of Egypt felt compelled to respect. Pictured: Egyptian President Anwar Sadat (left) and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin (right) acknowledge applause during a Joint Session of Congress in which U.S. President Jimmy Carter announced the results of the Camp David Accords, September 18, 1978. (Image source: Warren K. Leffler/Library of Congress)

Sadat knew that taking steps towards peace requires more than simply writing documents and speaking from afar, which is why he went to Israel to present his vision. He said to the Israeli Knesset, "There are moments in the life of nations and peoples when it is incumbent on those known for their wisdom and clarity of vision to overlook the past, with all its complexities and weighing memories, in a bold drive towards new horizons".

Sadat demonstrated that he understood some of Israel's fundamental issues when he said, "What is peace for Israel? It means that Israel lives in the region with her Arab neighbors, in security and safety".

Sadat understood the benefit of peace to all people of the Middle East, including Arabs, and he understood the duty of leaders in making peace a reality. He said, "We owe it to this generation and the generations to come, not to leave a stone unturned in our pursuit of peace. ... Peace and prosperity in our area are closely linked and interrelated".

A New Page

The Arab world has an abysmal record on human rights, is mired in internal wars, and continues pointless hostility towards Israel, a neighbor that is far ahead of us scientifically and economically, and from which we could benefit greatly.

We must take ownership of our past actions towards Israel, and we must make the changes needed to turn the page. In the words of Sadat, "We must all rise above all forms of fanaticism, self-deception and obsolete theories of superiority". It is up to us.



Fred Maroun, a left-leaning Arab based in Canada, has authored op-eds for New Canadian Media, among other outlets. From 1961-1984, he lived in Lebanon.

Source: https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/8597/arabs-israel-renewal

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the aut

Iran Is Cheating on the Nuclear Deal, Now What? - Majid Rafizadeh




by Majid Rafizadeh



A secret agreement, obtained by the Associated Press, discloses that Iran's nuclear deal would not only lift constraints on Iran's nuclear program after the nuclear deal, but it will also do so long before the deal expires --

  • One year into the nuclear deal, two credible and timely intelligence reports reveal that Iran has no intention of honoring the terms of the deal, which, anyway, it never signed.
  • Germany's domestic intelligence agency revealed that the Iranian government has pursued a "clandestine" path to obtain illicit nuclear technology and equipment from German companies "at what is, even by international standards, a quantitatively high level."
  • A secret agreement, obtained by the Associated Press, discloses that Iran's nuclear deal would not only lift constraints on Iran's nuclear program after the nuclear deal, but it will also do so long before the deal expires -- including the installation of thousands of centrifuges, five times more than what it currently possesses, as well enriching uranium at a much higher pace.
  • The more the White House ignores Iran's violations of the nuclear accord, the more Iran will be emboldened to violate international laws and the terms of the nuclear agreement.

On July 14, 2015, Iran and the six world powers known as the P5+1 (China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States) reached an agreement on Iran's nuclear program. The deal was intended to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions and put a hold on Tehran's nuclear development.

President Obama promised that the deal is not based on trust rather anchored in verification. Nevertheless, the following revelations of confidential documents as well as the following breaches of the nuclear agreement by Iran, reveal otherwise.

On paper, the nuclear agreement, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), stipulates a series of regulations, monitoring mechanisms, and restrictions on Iran's nuclear activities. But how can the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) maintain these transparency standards and follow through on the proposed regulations? How can the IAEA be sure to detect all illicit nuclear activities in the 18th largest country in the world?

Iran has a history of deceiving the IAEA by conducting clandestine nuclear activities, as it did in Arak, Natanz, and Ferdow.

The Arak heavy water reactor, in Iran, is capable of producing plutonium. (Image source: Wikimedia Commons)

One of the primary concerns about the agreement is that the Iranian government could easily pursue a covert program after reaping the benefits of the deal -- the removal of four rounds of international sanctions that were imposed by the members of the UN Security Council, resumption of oil sales at any level that Iran desires, rejoining the global financial system, and obtaining billions of dollars of frozen assets and accumulated interest.

One year into the nuclear deal, two credible and timely intelligence reports reveal that Iran has no intention of honoring the terms of the deal, which, anyway, it never signed.

Germany's domestic intelligence agency, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, revealed in its annual report that the Iranian government has pursued a "clandestine" path to obtain illicit nuclear technology and equipment from German companies "at what is, even by international standards, a quantitatively high level."

The intelligence report also stated that "it is safe to expect that Iran will continue its intensive procurement activities in Germany using clandestine methods to achieve its objectives." Even German Chancellor Angela Merkel criticized Iran and emphasized the significance of these findings, in a statement to the German Parliament.

Although Germany did not state exactly what Iran was trying to buy, another detailed report by the Institute for Science and International Security appear to shed light on that topic. The report stated:
"The Institute for Science and International Security has learned that Iran's Atomic Energy Organization (AEOI) recently made an attempt to purchase tons of controlled carbon fiber from a country. This attempt occurred after Implementation Day of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). The attempt to acquire carbon fiber was denied by the supplier and its government. Nonetheless, the AEOI had enough carbon fiber to replace existing advanced centrifuge rotors and had no need for additional quantities over the next several years, let alone for tons of carbon fiber. This attempt thus raises concerns over whether Iran intends to abide by its JCPOA commitments. In particular, Iran may seek to stockpile the carbon fiber so as to be able to build advanced centrifuge rotors far beyond its current needs under the JCPOA, providing an advantage that would allow it to quickly build an advanced centrifuge enrichment plant if it chose to leave or disregard the JCPOA during the next few years. The carbon fiber procurement attempt is also another example of efforts by the P5+1 to keep secret problematic Iranian actions."
The report, which was written by Andrea Stricker and David Albright (former United Nations IAEA nuclear inspector ), explains that the Iranian government is required to request permission from a UN Security Council panel for "purchases of nuclear direct-use goods."

Another critical issue is the revelation about a secret agreement, obtained by the Associated Press, which discloses that Iran's nuclear deal would not only lift constraints on Iran's nuclear program after the nuclear deal, but it will also do so long before the deal expires.

According to the secret agreement, the deal would pave the way for Iranian leaders to advance their nuclear capabilities at a higher level and even be capable of reducing nuclear weapons breakout capability from one year to six months, long before the nuclear agreement ends.

The Obama Administration has not made this document public yet. A diplomat, who works on Iran's nuclear program and who asked for anonymity, shared the secret document with the Associated Press:
"The diplomat who shared the document with the AP described it as an add-on agreement to the nuclear deal. But while formally separate from that accord, he said that it was in effect an integral part of the deal and had been approved both by Iran and the US, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany, the six powers that negotiated the deal with Tehran."
This document suggests that Iran can install thousands of centrifuges, five times more than what it currently possesses, as well enrich uranium at much higher pace, also long before the agreement expires.
According to the Associated Press:
"Centrifuges churn out uranium to levels that can range from use as reactor fuel and for medical and research purposes to much higher levels for the core of a nuclear warhead. From year 11 to 13, says the document, Iran can install centrifuges up to five times as efficient as the 5,060 machines it is now restricted to using.
"Those new models will number less than those being used now, ranging between 2,500 and 3,500, depending on their efficiency, according to the document. But because they are more effective, they will allow Iran to enrich at more than twice the rate it is doing now."
The Associated Press adds:
"The document also allows Iran to greatly expand its work with centrifuges that are even more advanced, including large-scale testing in preparation for the deal's expiry 15 years after its implementation on Jan. 18. ... The document is the only secret text linked to last year's agreement between Iran and six foreign powers. It says that after a period between 11 to 13 years, Iran can replace its 5,060 inefficient centrifuges with up to 3,500 advanced machines. Since those are five times as efficient, the time Iran would need to make a weapon would drop from a year to six months."
More importantly, this document and the rest of the nuclear agreement still do not explain what are the rules on Iran's nuclear proliferation after the 13 years are over. The only interpretation would be that since there is no restriction indicated, Iran will be then be free to do what it desires when it comes to its nuclear program, including installing advanced centrifuges, enriching uranium, and obtaining a nuclear bomb.

Iran protested the disclosure of these documents. Last week, the spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), Behrouz Kamalvandi, said that "the parts [of the document] published were confidential and were supposed to remain so. ... Our assumption is that it has been leaked by the (International Atomic Energy) Agency."

AEOI head Ali Akbar Salehi pressed on the secrecy of these documents "We do not intend to make this plan known to the public and (IAEA)'s action is a breach of promise."

This also shows that President Obama wanted the Congress to sign a deal that was not fully disclosed.
Another problem with the nuclear agreement is the procedure that was put in place in case Iran violated the deal. On paper, the nuclear agreement indicates that sanctions would be re-imposed on Iran.

President Obama repeatedly stated that the sanctions could be quickly and easily re-imposed if Iran violated the terms of the agreement. However, it's not really that simple. Once the four rounds of sanctions have been lifted, it would require the approval of all five members of the UN Security Council each to re-impose one round of sanctions. It goes without saying that getting the approval of China and Russia would not be as easy as Mr. Obama made it sound.

What has been President Obama's reaction to these crucial intelligence reports? Silence. The administration continues to disregard and dodge questions regarding this issue. When asked about the German intelligence report and the Institute for Science and International Security report, a State Department spokesman said, "we have absolutely no indication that Iran has procured any materials in violation of the JCPOA."

The more the White House ignores Iran's violations of the nuclear accord, the more Iran will be emboldened to violate international laws and the terms of the nuclear agreement.
  • Follow Majid Rafizadeh on Twitter


Dr. Majid Rafizadeh, political scientists and Harvard University scholar is president of the International American Council on the Middle East. He can be reached at Dr.rafizadeh@post.harvard.edu.

Source: https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/8543/iran-nuclear-cheating

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the aut

Obama dances the jizya - Richard Butrick




by Richard Butrick


The Iranians know desperation when they see it and Obama was desperate for the appearance of success in the Middle East.


When Jefferson and John Adams went to call on Tripoli’s envoy to London, Ambassador Sidi Haji Abdrahaman, they asked him by what right his Barbary pirates raided  American ships, stole their cargo, killed, enslaved, and ransomed their crews. As Jefferson later reported to Secretary of State John Jay, and to the Congress, the ambassador answered
that [the right] was founded on the Laws of the Prophet, that it was written in their Koran, that all nations who should not have answered their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as prisoners, and that every Mussulman who should be slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise.
That was in the early 1800s. Seems little has changed regarding the mindset of the leaders of the Ummah. Now it turns out that Obama (Kerry?) clandestinely ransomed four American captives held by Iran.
The Obama administration secretly airlifted $400 million in cash to Iran in January at the same time Tehran was releasing four jailed Americans, payment that a top congressional Republican is calling “ransom.” The Wall Street Journal, citing U.S. and European officials and congressional sources, reported that the administration procured the money from central banks in Switzerland and the Netherlands. The money was stacked on wooden pallets and flown to Tehran in an unmarked cargo plane.
The Iranians know desperation when they see it and Obama was desperate for the appearance of success in the Middle East. Seems we have a president more concerned with his image than with the honor and reputation of the U.S. and its citizens. Compare this to Stephen Decatur, the hero of the Tripoli wars:
He and nine volunteers made straight for the gunboat and borded her, with Decatur leading the charge. They were outnumbered five to one but fought ferociously. Decatur found the burly Muslim captain who killed his brother, and immediately confronted him...
Decatur, and the men he led, must be rolling over in their graves.


Richard Butrick

Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2016/08/obama_dances_the_jizya.html

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the aut

The Wrath of Khan - Ann Coulter




by Ann Coulter


Leftists' devious tactic of shutting down debate with victim-spokespeople.





Khizr Khan, the Muslim "Gold Star Father" who harangued Americans at the Democratic National Convention, with a mute, hijab-wearing wife at his side, is just another in a long string of human shields liberals send out to defend their heinous policies. The "Jersey Girls" were the classic example, first described in that magnificent book Godless: The Church of Liberalism.

In order to shut down a debate they're losing, Democrats find victims to make their arguments for them, pre-empting counter-argument by droning on about the suffering of their victim-spokesperson. Alternative opinions must be preceded by proof that the speaker has "sacrificed" more than someone who lost a child, a husband, or whatever.

Khan's argument, delivered angrily and in a thick Pakistani accent at the DNC, is that "our" Constitution requires us to continue the nonstop importation of Muslims.

If the U.S. Constitution required us to admit more than 100,000 Muslims a year -- as we do -- we'd already be living in Pakistan, and Khan wouldn't have had to move to get that nice feeling of home. So the "argument" part of Khan's point is gibberish.

Luckily, Khan had Part Two: His son died in Iraq, whereas Donald Trump does not have a son who died in Iraq, so he can't say anything.

Yes, a candidate for president of the United States is supposed to be prohibited from discussing a dangerous immigration program because Khan's son was one of fourteen (14!) Muslim servicemen killed by other Muslims in our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. That's why we're obligated to import yet more Muslims – including, undoubtedly, some just like the ones who killed his son. Q.E.D.!

If you think that doesn't make any sense, keep your yap shut, unless you lost a child in Iraq, too.

There were virtually no Muslims in America before Teddy Kennedy's 1965 immigration act. Today, we admit more immigrants from Muslim countries than from Great Britain.

Are Americans allowed to have an opinion on whether that's a good idea?

So far, it's worked out great!

In addition to the sudden appearance of honor killings, clitorectomies, hijabs and massive government frauds, Muslim immigrants have given us: The most devastating terrorist attack in world history, followed by terrorist attacks at Fort Hood, the Boston Marathon, a military recruiting center in Chattanooga, Times Square, Vaughan Foods in Oklahoma, San Bernardino and an Orlando nightclub, among other places.

We've admitted 2 million Muslims just since 9/11 – that’s more than had been admitted before 9/11. If we don't make it 3 million, we're monsters? May we ask how many Muslims Khan's mystery Constitution requires -- or is that out of bounds unless we had a child who died in Iraq?

Apparently, sending out a victim to make their argument was the only option left for the "Make America Muslim!" crowd.

After Trump somehow got the crazy idea that a presidential candidate was allowed to discuss government policies and proposed a temporary ban on Muslim immigration -- which, by the way, is perfectly constitutional -- the entire media and political class erupted in a sputtering rage.

Conscience of a Nation, Speaker Paul Ryan proclaimed: "That's not who we are." Jeb! Bush made the subtle and clever argument that Trump was "unhinged." Marco Rubio called any pause in Muslim immigration "offensive." ABC News' Jonathan Karl called Trump's plan "outrageous" -- which was way better than MSNBC, where Trump was compared to white supremacists and Nazis.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Trump had "disqualifie(d)" himself from "serving as president" for suggesting any slowdown in Muslim immigration. Vice President Joe Biden -- tribune of blue-collar Americans everywhere! -- said that if Trump were the nominee, Hillary would "win in a walk."

Then it turned out Trump's Muslim ban was a huge hit with actual voters. Hillary, who promises to quadruple the number of Syrian "refugees" we bring in, is quite far from winning "in a walk."

So the media and political class had no choice: They had to produce a victim to make their argument, in order to block any response. For their next trick, Democrats plan to produce a little girl whose parents were recently murdered to present their tax plan. (Better make sure they weren't killed by an illegal alien!)

Does anyone know what Khan thinks of gays? How about miniskirts? Alcohol? Because I gather we're going to have to turn all our policies over to him, too. What have you sacrificed, Barney Frank??

Muslim troops accounted for 0.2 percent of all U.S. troop deaths in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Southerners accounted for 38 percent of those killed in Iraq and 47 percent in Afghanistan.

What has South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley "sacrificed" compared to the families of these men? How about Nikki put their flag back up?

The Confederate flag won't lead to thousands of dead and maimed Americans, as Muslim immigration does. The only danger posed by the Confederate flag is that media elites will hold the South in even greater contempt than they already do, assuming that's possible.

But as long as they brought it up, if only people who lost children in our wars may discuss public policy, then only they should vote, not only on how many more Muslim immigrants this country needs, but on all government policies. What has Chuck Todd sacrificed? Have any current members of The New York Times editorial board ever lost a son in war? (Fighting on the American side.)

The inevitable conclusion to the hysteria over Khan is that only those who have worn the uniform and heard shots fired in anger can vote in our elections. Hello, media? Hey -- where'd everybody go? 


Ann Coulter

Source: http://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/263738/wrath-khan-ann-coulter

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the aut

Bring Us Apart - Bruce Walker




by Bruce Walker


The left loves this sort of homogenization of life guided by the sting of the state and the siren song of corrupted and infiltrated institutions.


Presidential election season for many years has been that time when politicians seeking high office tell us that they are the "leaders" who can "bring us together."   The purpose of good government, of course, is to allow us to be ourselves, to live our own lives according to our own values and to resist that awful and insistent screech to "bring us together."

The most awful political systems in modern history have proudly proclaimed that all of us now think and work and play and feel as one.  In fact, that is the salient feature of Nazism, Bolshevism, Maoism, and Fascism.  The Hitler Youth, for example, was intended to bring the rich and the poor, the city and the country, the Bavarian and the Prussian together as equals, all doing the same hard marching, all living in common barracks, all seeing themselves as part of a united people. 

The left loves this sort of homogenization of life guided by the sting of the state and the siren song of corrupted and infiltrated institutions.  Convincing all politicians – conservative as well as leftist and Republican as well as Democrat – that we need a "leader" to "bring us together" is the left's sneakiest maneuver.

This sort of artificial "unity" has all sorts of hidden horrors.  Consider academia.  Colleges ought to be all different, proposing different and conflicting approaches to life and offering different values.  The different professions of faith within the Judeo-Christian tradition ought to be distinct in real ways. 

Research and science ought to have "schools of thought" so that if one asked ten different universities which school of thought its relevant department had regarding climate change, one would get several different schools of thought instead of exactly the same dogma all the time. 

Not every young man or woman just out of high school should believe that he "ought" to go to college, because it is suitable for some but not for all.  Indeed, a college degree ought to be considered not proof of any particular credentials – proficiency tests can do that just fine – but rather proof that the graduate has engaged in a private pursuit of knowledge, using the university to help him.

Instead, we have folks like Sanders and Clinton acting as if we all ought to have a right to college and that we all ought to exercise that right.  (Why not have the federal government simply award a pro forma bachelor's degree to everyone who graduates from high school?  That would be much cheaper and save years of time on college campuses.)

Consider the homogenization of corporate life when every corporate bureaucracy – the real bosses of most large corporations – are cadres of leftism pushing the same agenda and accepting the same premises as every other corporation.  (This explains the real dread leftists feel towards small business, family farms, and similar genuinely independent economic activity.)

Consider, even, the regimentation of philanthropic and charitable activities.  Those groups that follow Leftist lockstep, like the Girl Scouts, are lauded, while those who try to stay true to their values, like the Boy Scouts, are hounded and harassed.  Politically correct charitable conglomerates like the United Way are pushed rather directly on employees in government and big businesses, while the genuinely useful but small and unnoticed charitable work gets no support or encouragement at all.

The great virtue of federalism, the marketplace of governments, is slapped and battered by federal judges and bigoted federal prosecutors and noxious leftist media so anything in one state not identical to most states is somehow constitutionally flawed and morally suspect.  The grand idea of America, that a modest federal government would exercise what slight control is essential to the nation and that states should be a flower garden of dazzling differences, has long been dismissed as contrary to the totalitarian goal of "bringing us together" – for our own good, of course.

We need to be much more disunited than we are today.  We need presidential elections to become, once again, relatively unimportant events in our lives because Washington and the gnomes who live there have become unimportant again.  We need someone who will inspire us to be many separate parts that associate or connect to the nation as a whole only when these parts wish that to happen.

Can this happen?  Can the crushing gravitational attraction of leftist collectivism with its faith of secular humanism can be tamed and then caged?  The hour is very late, and the work to do is long and hard, but it is surely a battle worth fighting.


Bruce Walker

Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2016/08/bring_us_apart.html

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the aut