Saturday, September 28, 2013

Obama to Israel: Suicide Is Security

by P. David Hornik


“Friends of Israel, including the United States,” President Obama said in his speech to the UN on Tuesday, “must recognize that Israel’s security as a Jewish and democratic state depends upon the realization of a Palestinian state….”

Particularly because of its timing, the statement left most Israelis rubbing their eyes.
Transportation Minister Israel Katz of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party called Obama’s words “one of the worst statements by an American president in history. Israel’s existence does not depend on anything, especially not the Palestinians….”

Imagine carving out about one-fourth of the U.S. and making it a separate country bordering Washington and a few miles from New York. This country is populated by people who systematically teach their children that the United States has no right to exist and must be destroyed, and name schools, public squares, and summer camps after terrorists who have inflicted mass-casualty attacks on the U.S.

No one in his right mind would call that a way to ensure America’s security.

There are, though, more specific reasons to marvel at (while not being surprised by) Obama’s words.
Over the past week, two Israeli soldiers have been murdered by Palestinian terror. On Friday 20-year-old Tomer Hazan was killed by a Palestinian coworker who lured him to his village near Qalqilya in the West Bank. On Sunday 20-year-old Gavriel Kovi was killed by a Palestinian sniper while guarding civilians in the West Bank town of Hebron.

In the case of Tomer Hazan’s murder, the coworker, Nidal Amar, tried to hide his body in a bid to use it as ransom for Amar’s brother, jailed in Israel on terror charges. Amar was quickly apprehended.
In the case of Gavriel Kovi’s murder, the killer has not yet been found.

No condemnation of these acts was forthcoming from any Palestinian Authority official, including President Mahmoud Abbas—this at a time when Israel is engaged in yet another round of “peace talks” with the PA that Secretary of State John Kerry heavily pressured both sides to launch.

Finally on Monday night, when pressed to do so in a meeting with Jewish leaders in New York, Abbas “condemned” the killings—while adding that he “expected Israel to condemn the deaths of four young Palestinians at the hands of the IDF in recent weeks.”
The Times of Israel notes that
It was not clear to what Abbas was referring, but on Sept. 17, Israeli forces, believing their lives to be in danger, killed one man and wounded at least one during a raid on a refugee camp near Jerusalem to arrest a fugitive, the IDF said.
That is, a “condemnation” that equated outright acts of murder with acts of self-defense by security forces, that was made only in English to a small audience in New York, and that is not really a condemnation at all.

But it is not only that such phenomena—murders of Israelis and wall-to-wall Palestinian refusal to condemn them—are occurring during “peace talks.” Khaled Abut Toameh reports that—as many feared would happen—the talks are fomenting violence rather than allaying it, and the attitude toward the murders goes well beyond passivity:
A connection seems to exist between the resumption of the peace talks…and the recent upsurge in violence in the West Bank, which reached its peak with the killing of two Israeli soldiers this week….
Earlier this week, representatives of several Palestinian groups met in Ramallah and launched a public campaign to stop the negotiations and wage an intifada against Israel.
That the meeting was held a few hundred meters away from Abbas’s headquarters is significant. It shows that opposition to the peace talks is not only coming from the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, but also from the largely secular and relatively moderate city of Ramallah….
Fatah’s armed wing, Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, rushed to claim responsibility for the killing of the two IDF soldiers in Qalqilya and Hebron.
After the killing of the soldier in Hebron by a sniper, Fatah published a photo of one of its sharpshooters with the caption, “When Fatah says, it does. When Fatah promises, it fulfills.”
That’s Fatah, essentially the government of the West Bank, the movement Abbas has belonged to for half a century and now leads, and Israel’s “peace partner.”

For all these reasons Obama’s statement that Israel’s security “depends upon” creating a Palestinian state goes beyond the usual boilerplate and carried a special sting.

Outlining his broader vision, Obama said:
In the near term, America’s diplomatic efforts will focus on two particular issues: Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons, and the Arab-Israeli conflict.  While these issues are not the cause of all the region’s problems, they have been a major source of instability for far too long, and resolving them can help serve as a foundation for a broader peace.
Again, beyond boilerplate, implicitly equating the imminent attainment of an industrial-scale nuclear-weapons capacity by a murderous anti-Western regime with the fact that 1.5 million Palestinians in the West Bank do not have—unlike in Gaza—a full-fledged sovereign state that would, undoubtedly, be another great gift to Israel and humanity.

Netanyahu will be meeting with Obama on Monday before addressing the UN on Tuesday. One can conjecture that—unless the security situation worsens—Netanyahu will keep playing along with the Palestinian charade while trying to get Obama focused and realistic on Iran.

P. David Hornik


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

Hamas Threatens Egypt, Israel And Palestinian Authority

by Khaled Abu Toameh

If the leaders of Hamas believe that the Egyptians are determined to undermine or topple their regime, they will not hesitate to initiate a new military confrontation against Israel. Hamas would never dare to initiate one against the Egyptian army. It is easier to fire rockets at Israel.

As Egypt steps up security restrictions along its border with the Gaza Strip, Hamas and some Palestinian terror groups have been holding "military parades" in a bid to show that they are prepared for war.

The parades, which saw hundreds of heavily armed militiamen march through the streets, are mainly intended to send a message of warning to Egypt's new rulers against any attempt to launch a military offensive inside the Gaza Strip.

A Hamas military parade.

Some Hamas leaders are convinced that the Egyptians are preparing to launch a military strike against the Gaza Strip under the pretext of combating terror in Sinai.

However, the show of force by Hamas and its allies is also designed to send a warning message to Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Hamas believes that Israel and the Palestinian Authority are directly involved in an Egyptian-led scheme to overthrow their regime and bring Mahmoud Abbas's forces back to the Gaza Strip.

The parades are also intended to send a warning message to Abbas as to what awaits him and his loyalists if they dare enter the Gaza Strip with the help of Israel and Egypt.

Given Hamas's growing isolation in the aftermath of the downfall of the Muslim Brotherhood regime in Cairo and the Egyptian authorities' severe and unprecedented restrictions along the border, there is no underestimating the threats coming out of the Gaza Strip.

If the leaders of Hamas believe that the Egyptians are determined to undermine or topple their regime, they will not hesitate to initiate a new military confrontation with Israel.

In public, Hamas leaders and members say that the "military parades" are aimed at sending a warning message to Israel, and not Egypt.

But in private, several Hamas leaders and spokesmen admit that the biggest and most immediate threat to their regime is coming from Egypt.

The Egyptian authorities see the threats as being directed first and foremost toward Egypt.
This explains why Egypt's Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy this week deemed it necessary to warn Hamas of a "harsh response" if it threatened his country's national security. Fahmy said the response would include "military and security choices."

Days before the warning, hundreds of gunmen belonging to Hamas's armed wing, Izaddin al-Kassam, staged a provocative march near the border with Egypt, carrying photos of deposed Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi and chanting slogans against the "military coup" in Cairo.

In yet another sign of mounting tensions between the two sides, Egyptian border guards stationed along the border with the Gaza Strip have been hurling abuse and threats at Hamas policemen and Palestinian farmers, Palestinians living in the area said this week.

Palestinian fishermen have also fallen victim to the standoff between Hamas and the Egyptian authorities.

Last week, five fishermen were each sentenced by an Egyptian military court to one year in prison for fishing in Egyptian territorial waters.

Earlier, Egyptian naval forces detained and severely beat other fishermen for approaching Egypt's territorial waters.

Despite the show of force, Hamas would never dare to initiate a military confrontation against the Egyptian army. Hamas will find it easier to fire rockets at Israel than launch terror attacks against the Egyptians.

Hamas is fully aware that such a confrontation would spark a harsh response from the Egyptians -- one that would surely lead to the collapse of its regime. Previous confrontations between Hamas and the Israel Defense Forces would then look like children's games compared to a clash with the Egyptian or any other Arab army.

That is why Israel needs to be prepared for the possibility of another war with Hamas and its allies in the Gaza Strip.

Khaled Abu Toameh


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

'Unbelievable Savagery' by Terrorists at Nairobi Mall

by Rick Moran

I saw this in the Daily Mail yesterday but hesitated to write about it because there appeared to be no independent confirmation from other sources.

Today, USA Today and the Independent in Great Britain are also carrying descriptions of the utter hell endured by non-Muslim victims of the massacre.


As if the senseless massacre of innocents in Nairobi's Westgate mall was not horrific enough, reports are surfacing that the Islamic terrorists who seized the mall last weekend tortured, beheaded, raped, and mutilated their victims before killing them. A police doctor who entered the mall after the attack said these reports "are not allegations. Those are f***ing truths."
"They removed balls, eyes, ears, nose," he said. "They get your hand and sharpen it like a pencil then they tell you to write your name with the blood. They drive knives inside a child's body. Actually, if you look at all the bodies, unless those ones that were escaping, fingers are cut by pliers, the noses are ripped by pliers."
Several reports have verified that such atrocities occurred.
The nightmare of the terrorist attack on the Westgate Mall in Nairobi began shortly after noon on Saturday, September 21, when the terrorists began indiscriminately shooting and throwing grenades. The siege ended after four days, with a death toll of 72 (likely to rise) and scores more wounded and missing.
USA Today reported that "hostages were left hanging and had their eyes gouged, others were dismembered. Others had their throats slashed or were castrated and had fingers amputated."
If you want additional descriptions of what the hostages had to go through, you can follow the links above - if you have a strong stomach. 

There are indications that Kenyan intelligence got wind of the attack and informed the police and military. But this may be just your typical bureaucratic CYA. 

Unwittingly, the terrorists may have just made things much more diffucult for themselves. I daresay people will fight for their lives rather than be taken hostage if they know they will have to endure unspeakable torture before they die.

Rick Moran


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

A Christian Fatwa Against Israel

by Giulio Meotti

The World Council of Churches, an ecumenical body which claims to represent 590 million Christians worldwide and based in Switzerland, will sponsor an event supporting the partition and Islamization of Jerusalem. The ”World Week for Peace in Palestine Israel” will go on from 22nd of September.

“This annual observance of a week of prayer, education, and advocacy calls participants to work for an end to the illegal occupation of Palestine, so that Palestinians and Israelis can finally live in peace. It has been more than 64 years since the partition of Palestine hardened into a permanent nightmare for Palestinians. It is now more than 45 years since the occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza overwhelmed the peaceful vision of one land, two peoples”.
By claiming that the Jewish people “occupied” Zion, the global Christians organization sides with the Islamic worldview and deletes 3.000 years of Jewish presence in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria. 

This year's goal is erasing any Jewish presence in the so called “holy basin”, an alliance of the Islamic mosques and the Christian sepulcher which will exclude the Jews from the Temple Mount. 

Two years ago, the World Council of Churches organized a four-day conference in the Greek city of Volos. Lutherans arrived from the United States, Catholics and Protestants from Bethlehem and Nazareth, Orthodox Christians from Greece and Russia, lecturers from Beirut and Copts from Egypt. The conference declared the Jewish State “a sin” and “occupying power”, accused Israelis of “dehumanizing” the Palestinians, theologically dismantled the “choseness” of the Jewish people, called for “resistance” as a Christian duty, attacked Jewish homes in Judea and Samaria invoking the name of God and conceptually dismissed the Jewish state, imagining it to be a mixed area - Islamic, Christian and perhaps a bit Jewish.

The old Christian replacement calumny has changed language, yet it still marks a death sentence for the Jews: Israelis, like Lucifer, were God’s Chosen, but were cast out for their evil ways, and now deserve to be obliterated from the “Holy Land”, the argument goes.
This is a Christian fatwa against the Israelis. 

This week, England’s most senior Catholic, Archbishop of Westminster Vincent Nichols, referred to the “State of Palestine” and demonized the State of Israel through this typical Christian whinge: “No one who has seen the security wall that divides so much of the Holy Land, cutting off people from their traditional land and means of sustenance, no one who has felt the fear and insecurity that mars that land, no one who has seen the contrast between the provision of goods on one side of a line and the lack even of a reliable source of water on the other, can have any doubt about the importance of finding this pathway to peace as soon as possible”. 
Meanwhile the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, Fouad Twal, who was in Rome for a meeting of the Latin Bishops’ Conference for the Arab Region, slammed Israel “for the occupation, the walls and the checkpoints”, and from Melbourne, Australia, Archbishop Theodosios, of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem, declared that “in 1948 in the Nakba, the people who suffered were not necessarily Christian or Muslim – it was the entire population”.

Every Sunday morning in American churches, thousands of generous Christians collect money for the welfare and future of the Israeli people. The vast majority of them simply wants to bless Israel because that is what they believe is the right thing to do. But their global representatives, from London to Jerusalem, are breathing new life into a demonology that bans Israel from the family of nations.
The World Council of Churches has written the liturgy of prayer for the upcoming pro-Palestinian Arab event. It is a kind of pro- Arab religious psalm in which Jews are demonized. The prayer was composed by Rev. Hosam Naoum, Anglican Church; Rev. Ashraf Tannous, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land; Dr. Charlie Abu Sa’da, Melkite Catholic Church; the World Day of Prayer Committee in Palestine, headed by Aida Haddad, and Nora Carmi, Kairos Palestine. 

Here some quotes: "Oh Lord. Come and see the hardships and agony of the bereaved families when they receive the tortured and disfigured bodies of their loved ones. Come grieve with families who are prevented from burying their dead because of physical walls". They are not referring to Tomer Hazan,the Fogel or the Hatuel families.
The religious book prepared for the WCC states that "the destruction and uprooting of olive trees by the Israeli occupation is not only an expression of ecological disrespect and vandalism, but also an insult to God’s creation and the people who, despite their oppression and suffering, can still extend their hands with an olive branch to soldiers and oppressors". 

"For those who have no value for life, for those who protect their own interests at the expense of the suffering of others, we pray that they might repent and lead a life of righteousness and justice". Here the book slanders the Jewish people by calling it "those who have no value for life". 
The liturgy uses the Scriptures to foment the anti-Israel sentiment: 

"We pray for all those Palestinians whose homes have been demolished and those who have been driven away. For Palestinians who suffer because of the separation wall and settlements and for those who have lost their jobs and suffer from poverty, hunger and thirst.
We pray to you, O God.

For all children who cannot reach their schools because of the wall, for the sick who cannot reach their hospitals, and for those who do not have the freedom to reach their places of worship.
We pray to you, O God".

This kind of “odium fidei,” or religious hatred, which manipulates the Scriptures against the Jewish people, reminds one of Adolf Hitler, who instructed a group of theologians to rewrite the Bible in a bid to remove all mention of the Jews. 

Located in Eisenach, the city where Martin Luther translated the Bible, the "Institute for the Study and Eradication of Jewish Influence on German Church Life", headed by Walter Grundmann (1906-76), published a new version of the Bible, called “The Message of God”. Missing from it were all references to Jesus as a Jew. 
After that, "Aryan Jesus", which was the Christian legitimization of the Nazi Holocaust, it is now the turn of the "Palestinian Jesus", a tool in the Islamic war against the State of Israel and its Jews.

These global Christian leaders are blindly ready to ally with Yasser Arafat and Ahmed Yassin, with Ayatollah Khomeini and Hassan Nasrallah, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Osama bin Laden, who relentlessly link the wanton murder of Jews with the liquidation of Christianity. 

Giulio Meotti


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

Caroline Glick: Obama's Power and its Limitations

by Caroline Glick


US President Barack Obama's rapidly changing positions on Syria have produced many odd spectacles.

One of odder ones was the sight of hundreds of lobbyists from the American Israel Public Affairs Committee fanning out on Capitol Hill to lobby members of the House and Senate to support Obama's plan to launch what Secretary of State John Kerry called "unbelievably small" air strikes against empty regime controlled buildings in Syria.

AIPAC officials claimed they were doing this because the air strikes would help Israel.

But this claim was easily undone. Obama and Kerry insisted nothing the US would do would have any impact on the outcome of the Syrian civil war. This was supposed to be the strikes' selling point. But by launching worthless strikes, Obama was poised to wreck America's deterrent posture, transforming the world's superpower into an international joke.

In harming America's deterrent capabilities by speaking loudly and carrying an "unbelievably small" stick, Kerry and Obama also harmed Israel's deterrent posture.

Israel's deterrence relies in no small measure on its strategic alliance with the US.

Once the US is no longer feared, a key part of Israeli deterrence is removed.

Obama did not announce his intention to bomb empty buildings in Syria in order to impact the deterrent posture of either the US or Israel. He probably gave them little thought. The only one who stood to gain from those strikes - aside from Syrian President Bashar Assad who would earn bragging rights for standing down the US military - was Obama himself.

Obama wanted to launch the unbelievably small strikes to prove that he wasn't lying when he said that Syria would cross a red line if it used chemical weapons.

So if the strikes were going to harm the US and Israel, why did AIPAC dispatch its lobbyists to Capitol Hill to lobby in favor of them? 

Because Obama made them.

Obama ordered AIPAC to go to Capitol Hill to lobby for the Syria strikes. He did so knowing that its involvement would weaken public support for AIPAC and Israel. Both would be widely perceived as pushing the US to send military forces into harm's way to defend Israel.

Then, with hundreds of AIPAC lobbyist racing from one Congressional office to the next, Obama left them in a lurch. He announced he was cutting a deal with Russia and had decided not to attack Syria after all.

What did AIPAC get for its self-defeating efforts on Obama's behalf? 

Obama is now courting Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in the hopes of making a deal that Iran will use as cover for completing its nuclear weapons program. Such a deal may well involve ending sanctions on Iran's oil exports and its central bank - sanctions that AIPAC expended years of effort getting Congress to pass.

And that's not all. Monday, as Obama meets with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu at the UN General Assembly in New York, Vice President Joe Biden will become the highest ranking administration official to date to address the J Street conference.

J Street was formed in order to weaken AIPAC, and force it to the left. Sending Biden to headline at the J Street conference is an act of aggression against AIPAC. It also signals that Obama remains committed to strengthening the anti-Israel voices at the margins of the American Jewish community at the expense of the pro- Israel majority.

The question is why is AIPAC cooperating with Obama as he abuses it? Why didn't they just say no? 

Because they couldn't.

AIPAC is not strong enough to stand up to the president of the United States, particularly one as hostile as Obama.

Not only would it have suffered direct retaliation for its refusal, Obama would have also punished Israel for its friend's recalcitrance.

In a recent interview with The Times of Israel, Eitan Haber, late prime minister Yitzhak Rabin's closest aide, made the case that Israel is powerless in the face of White House pressure. Haber claimed that only when a person becomes prime minister does he understand "to what extent the State of Israel is dependent on America. For absolutely everything... we are dependent on America."

Haber noted that the US can collapse every aspect of Israel. From this he concluded that no Israeli leader can stand up to Washington.

Haber recalled a menacing conversation Rabin had with then-US secretary of state James Baker during which Baker became angry at Rabin.

"America is right even when it is wrong," Baker admonished the Israeli leader.

Haber warned that Israel cannot stand up to the US even when the US is behaving in a manner that endangers Israel. "It's possible that they don't understand the region and that they are naïve and stupid," he said, "But they are America."

Haber was right that that the White House can destroy Israel's economy, defenses and diplomatic position any time it wishes. In the past administration threats of economic sanctions or delays in sending spare parts for weapons platforms have been sufficient to make Israeli leaders fall into line.

For the past five and a half years Obama has dangled US diplomatic support at the UN Security Council over Israel's head like the Sword of Damocles.

Obama forced Netanyahu to make concession after concession to secure his veto of the PLO's request that the UN Security Council accept "Palestine" as a member state two years ago. Netanyahu's sudden support for Palestinian statehood and his 10- month long freeze on Jewish property rights in Judea and Samaria were the most public concessions he was forced to cough up.

The timing of the EU announcement that it was barring EU entities from forging ties with Israelis that operate beyond the 1949 armistice lines was revealing in this context. The EU announced its economic sanctions the day Kerry announced the start of negotiations between Israel and the PLO. The message to Israel was absolutely clear: Do what we order you to or you will face economic sanctions far more damaging.

Obama's appointment of Samantha Power to serve as US ambassador to the UN was another signal of ill intent. Power became the object of fear and fury for Israel supporters after YouTube videos of a 2002 interview she gave went viral during the 2008 elections. In that interview Power called for the US to send "a mammoth protection force" to Israel to protect the Palestinians from "genocide" that Israel would commit. That is, she called for the US to go to war against Israel to protect the Palestinians from a nonexistent threat maliciously attributed to the only human rights-respecting state in the Middle East.

And just after his reelection, Obama sent Power to the epicenter of international blood libels and attempts to outlaw the Jewish state.

Obama's deal with Russia President Vladimir Putin was also a signal of aggression, if not an act of aggression in and of itself. The ink had barely dried on their unenforceable agreement that leaves Iran's Arab client in power, when Putin turned his guns on Israel. As Putin put it, Syria only developed its chemical arsenal "as an alternative to the nuclear weapons of Israel."

The Obama administration itself has a track record in putting Israel's presumptive nuclear arsenal on the international diplomatic chopping block. In 2010 Netanyahu was compelled to cancel his participation in Obama's nuclear weapons conference when he learned that Egypt and Turkey intended to use Obama's conference to demand that Israel sign the Nuclear Non- Proliferation Treaty.

Obama's behavior demonstrates his bad intentions. So Israelis and our American supporters need to ask whether Haber is right. Is Israel powerless in the face of a hostile US administration? 

Let's reconsider Obama's decision to turn to AIPAC for support on Syria.

Why did he do that? Why did he turn to an organization he wishes to harm and order it to go to the mattresses for him? 

Obama turned to AIPAC primarily because AIPAC could help him. AIPAC hold sway on Capitol Hill.

Where does that power come from? Does AIPAC wield influence because it frightens members into submission? 


AIPAC is powerful because it serves as a mouthpiece for the overwhelming majority of Americans. The American people support Israel. If something will help Israel, then most Americans will support it. Obama wanted Congressional support. He couldn't win it on the merits of his feckless plan. So he sent in AIPAC to pretend that his strikes would benefit Israel.

Obama's demand that AIPAC help him is reality's response to Haber's protestations of Israeli powerlessness.

Israel's alliance with the US, upon which it is so dependent, was not built with America's political or foreign policy elites. Saudi Arabia's alliance with the US was built on such ties.

Israel's alliance with the US is built on the American public's support for Israel. And although Obama himself doesn't need to face American voters again, his Democratic colleagues do. Moreover, even lame duck presidents cannot veer too far away from the national consensus.

It is because of this consensus that Obama has to send signals to Israel - like the EU sanctions, and Power's appointment to the UN - rather than openly part ways with Jerusalem.

Obama is powerful. And he threatens Israel. But Israel is not as powerless as Haber believes. Israel can make its case to the American public.

And assuming the American people support Israel's case, Obama's freedom of action can be constrained.

For instance, on the Palestinian issue, Haber said Israel has to accept whatever Obama says. But that isn't true. Netanyahu can set out the international legal basis for Israeli sovereignty over Judea and Samaria and explain why Israel's rights are stronger than the Palestinians'.

The government can expose the fact that the demographic doomsday scenario that forms the basis of support for the two-state formula is grounded on falsified data concocted by the PLO.

Demography, like international law, is actually one of Israel's strategic assets.

Then there is Iran.

Were Netanyahu to defy Obama and order the IDF to attack Iran's nuclear installations, he would be pushing the boundaries of the US political consensus less than Menachem Begin did when he ordered the air force to destroy Iraq's nuclear reactor in 1981. He would also be pushing the US consensus less than Rabin did when he embraced Yasser Arafat in 1993.

No, Israel cannot say no to everything that Obama wishes to do in the Middle East.

And yes, it needs to make concessions where it can to placate the White House. AIPAC's decision to take a bullet for Obama on Syria may have been the better part of wisdom.

Israel has three-and-a-half more years with Obama. They won't be easy. And there is no telling who will succeed him. But this needn't be a catastrophe. Our cards are limited. But we have cards. And if we play them wisely, we will be fine.


Caroline Glick


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

Iceland to Get its First Mosque

by Soeren Kern

The Muslim Association of Iceland now admits that foreign donors will be paying for the mosque's construction costs. The former mayor of Reykjavik says he believes it is outrageous for the city to give Muslims a site at no cost at a great location in the center of the city, and asks why political and feminist groups are so tolerant of a religion that he says degrades women.

The Reykjavík City Council has approved a building permit for the construction of the first mosque in Iceland.

The mosque will be built in Sogamýri, an upscale district near downtown Reykjavík on a highly desirable plot of land that was granted to Muslims free of charge, courtesy of Icelandic taxpayers.

Members of the city council -- which is led by Reykjavík Mayor Jón Gnarr, who identifies himself as an anarchist -- say they hope the prime location will make the mosque a prominent landmark in the city.

Critics of the mosque, however, say the project is being financed by donors in the Middle East who are seeking to exert control over -- and radicalize -- the growing Muslim community in Iceland.

Although reliable statistics do not exist, the Muslim population of Iceland is estimated to be approximately 1,200, or 0.4% of the total Icelandic population of 320,000. Most Muslims in Iceland live in the capital Reykjavík, where they make up about 1% of the total population of 120,000.

The Muslim community in Iceland may be small in comparison to other European countries, but its rate of growth has been exponential: Since 1990, when there were fewer than a dozen Muslims in the country, their number has increased by nearly 10,000%. Much of this growth has been due to immigration, but in recent years native Icelanders have also been converting to Islam in increasing numbers.

Currently there are two main Muslim groups in Iceland: the Muslim Association of Iceland, which has around 500 members, and the Islamic Cultural Center of Iceland, which has some 300 followers. The former group is run by Salmann Tamimi, a Palestinian immigrant who considers himself to be the voice of moderate Islam in Iceland; the latter group is run by Ahmad Seddeq, a firebrand preacher from Pakistan whose activities are allegedly being financed by Saudi Arabia.

Although both groups pertain to Sunni Islam, they have been openly fighting with each other for many years over who should be the rightful representative of Islam in Iceland.

In 2000, Tamimi -- whose group meets at a make-shift mosque on the third floor of an office building in downtown Reykjavík -- submitted an application to obtain a free plot of land from city authorities to build the first purpose-built mosque in Iceland.

Not to be outdone, Seddeq -- whose group meets at a make-shift mosque in an old concert hall near the Reykjavík airport -- submitted his own application for free land to build a competing mosque.

City officials responded by saying there should be only one mosque and that it should be shared by both groups. "Obviously we won't be allocating two lots for mosques at this point and we find it natural for them to cooperate on the construction of one mosque," Páll Hjaltason, the chairman of Reykjavík City's Urban Planning Council, told the newspaper Fréttabladid.

Seddeq said he was open to the idea of sharing one plot of land, but Tamimi, who submitted his application first, would have none of it. Instead, Tamimi lashed out at Seddeq, accusing him of extremism, fanaticism and oppression in the name of Islam.

"Our application is completely different from theirs," Salmann said in an interview with the newspaper Fréttabladid. "This is like asking the national church to be with the Jehovah's Witnesses."

Tamimi sought to undermine Seddeq's group by accusing it of being financed by Saudi Arabia. At one point, Tamimi called the police to report members of Seddeq's group, accusing them of misunderstanding the peaceful nature of Islam, and saying that he feared that Muslim extremists were attempting to gain a foothold in Iceland.

Tamimi also sought to assure the Reykjavík City Council that -- unlike Seddeq -- his mosque project would not be financed by foreigners and thus would not be promoting extremism.

"If we are going to have a mosque, it must be done according to local considerations," Tamimi said in October 2010. "As soon as you lose sight of the source of funding you lose control of what happens subsequently. The experience of other countries teaches that it is wise to reject large foreign investments in religion. Such investors are much more likely to import their own countries' traditions and not adapt to the traditions in their host country."

In the end, city officials sided with Tamimi, whose mosque project was formally approved on September 19. After more than a decade of bickering, construction of Reykjavík's first mosque is expected to begin in early 2014.

The cost of building the 800 square meter (8,600 square foot) mosque -- which will include a prayer hall, community center and library, as well as a nine-meter (30 foot) minaret -- is expected to exceed 400 million Icelandic Krona (€2.5 million; $3.3 million).

But now that the Reykjavík mosque project has been given the go-ahead, Tamimi's group has changed its tune and now admits that foreign donors will be paying for the mosque's construction costs after all.

During a newspaper interview on September 19 -- conducted just a few hours after the mosque project was approved -- Sverrir Agnarsson, a convert to Islam who is chairman of Tamimi's group, the Muslim Association of Iceland, was asked how the mosque would be financed.

"We have received numerous promises," Agnarsson said. "We are mostly seeking funding from individual foreigners. We have a right to get support from the collective funds of Muslims [the Ummah, or the worldwide community of Muslims]. We are doing all of this in cooperation with the Ministry of Justice to guarantee that all the money coming to us is received legally, and is not associated with any terrorist organizations," he added.

The idea that foreigners are financing the spread of Islam in Reykjavík does not sit well with many Icelanders.

One of the most vocal opponents of the mosque project has been the former mayor of Reykjavík, Ólafur F. Magnússon. In an article he wrote for the newspaper Morgunbladid, Magnússon laid out his position:
It is a matter of grave concern that it seems to be no problem for Muslims in Iceland to finance such a mosque here in Iceland with money from 'Muslim/Islamic promotion organizations' abroad. They could receive financial help from organizations that want to increase Islamic influence in Iceland as well as in other countries. This can be dangerous for our national culture and safety.
Magnússon also said why he thought it was wrong for foreign organizations to be financing the construction of mosques in Iceland:
Islam is a religion with the goal to eliminate all other religions and to expand all over the world, the West, the Nordic countries…and now even Iceland. The experience in the Nordic countries shows that Muslims are not adapting to society. This has become a huge problem, in Malmö [Sweden] for example. The other day, a mosque was to be built on Trondheim [Norway], but the Norwegian authorities canceled the project because some Saudi Arabian organization was to finance the whole thing.
Although he is not opposed to the mosque per se, Magnússon believes it is outrageous for the city to give Muslims a building site at no cost at a great location in the center of Reykjavík. He also asks why political movements and feminist groups in Iceland are so tolerant towards a religion that he says degrades women.

Part of the answer may be found in the political make-up of the Reykjavík City Council, which is led by the upstart Best Party, a so-called joke party that was propelled into office in 2010 as a backlash against establishment parties in the wake of Iceland's banking collapse in 2008.

The Best Party -- a semi-serious far left party that is home to anarchists, atheists, surrealists, punks and poets -- is being led by Jón Gnarr, a stand-up comedian whose stated political aim is thoroughly to upset the established order in Reykjavík. Critics say the new mosque represents a big step toward achieving Gnarr's objective.

Soeren Kern is a Senior Fellow at the New York-based Gatestone Institute. He is also Senior Fellow for European Politics at the Madrid-based Grupo de Estudios Estratégicos / Strategic Studies Group. Follow him on Facebook.

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

Dore Gold: The Holes in Rouhani's Charm Offensive

by Dore Gold

Iranian President Hasan Rouhani's efforts to change Western perceptions of Iran are already being called a "charm offensive." Imitating Russian President Vladimir Putin, who wrote an op-ed in The New York Times, Rouhani decided to place an article in one of the other leading American newspapers, The Washington Post. He wrote about Iran's "peaceful nuclear energy program," suggesting that its entire purpose was for "generating nuclear power" and "diversifying" Iran's energy resources.

This was old Iranian argumentation. But he continued with it in an interview on NBC News a day later, saying, "We have never sought, nor will ever seek, nuclear weapons. We solely seek peaceful nuclear technology." He also took the same message to CNN's Christiane Amanpour. This week in his speech at the U.N. General Assembly he insisted yet again that the Iranian nuclear program was for "exclusively peaceful purposes."

Thus Rouhani was not only making a statement about Iran's future intentions, but he was also rewriting history by saying that Iran had not sought nuclear weapons in the past. In doing so, Rouhani was reopening one of the main debates over the last decade about why Iran was constructing such a vast nuclear infrastructure.

Roughly ten years ago, the U.S. State Department published a power point presentation illustrating the inherent weakness of the arguments the Iranians used to defend their nuclear program. It noted that despite Iran's enormous oil and gas reserves, Iranian officials claimed that Iran could no longer rely on fossil fuels in the future. Ali Akbar Salehi, who today heads Iran's Atomic Energy Organization, but in 2003 served as its representative to the International Atomic Energy Organization, added that Iran had to replace the consumption of oil with the use of uranium ore as the primary source for Iran's energy.

But the State Department study showed that while Iran still had ample oil and gas, which could supply Iran for at least 200 years (in the case of gas), Tehran actually had very limited supplies of uranium ore, especially if it had plans of eventually building seven nuclear reactors for the production of electricity. In fact, if Iran's domestic supply of uranium ore was inadequate for a nationwide program of electricity production, it was more than sufficient for the production of a respectable number of atomic weapons every year. For the U.S., this was a red flag indicating that the argument that Iran only wanted a civilian program was completely disingenuous and what it really sought was a full scale nuclear weapons program.

Then there was the question of why Iran insisted that it must enrich its own uranium by itself. Tehran actually had only one working reactor for producing electricity at Bushehr, which used uranium fuel that was supplied by Russia. Moscow assured Tehran that the Russian supply of enriched uranium for Bushehr would not be disrupted. So why spend billions on enrichment plants at Natanz and Fordo?

Moreover, many advanced industrial states in the West import enriched uranium rather than build an uneconomical enrichment infrastructure: for example, Finland, Spain, South Korea, and Sweden. Even in the U.S., 92 percent of the uranium used in nuclear power plants during 2010 was of foreign origin.

There must have been an assumption among Iranian leaders that the West was either naive or extremely gullible, for Tehran persisted with its arguments that its nuclear efforts were only for civilian purposes. When Iran began to enrich uranium beyond the 3.5% level in June, 2010 to the 20% level, its spokesmen argued that this too was for civilian purposes; the small Tehran Research Reactor needed this fuel, the West was told, for manufacturing medical isotopes.

But while a year later, Iran already had enough uranium enriched to 20% to meet its demand for medical isotopes for at least seven years, it continued to produce 20% enriched uranium using the medical isotopes argument, which was transparently false. It was clear that the Iranians' single-minded determination to expand their stock of this uranium was motivated by the fact that the leap from 20% uranium to weapons-grade uranium could be made in half the time it would take to enrich 3.5% enriched uranium to weapons grade level.

There was one area in which Iranian nuclear activities could not be covered up with the excuse that they had some civilian purpose: the manufacture of nuclear warheads for Iranian ballistic missiles, like the Shahab-3, which has the range to strike Israel. In a highly classified briefing in February 2008 given to ambassadors to the IAEA in Vienna, captured Iranian documents detailed how to design a warhead for the Shahab-3.

There was an illustration of the arc of the missile's flight including the detonation of its warhead at an altitude of 600 meters. According to the IAEA experts a conventional explosion at 600 meters would have no effect on the ground below, but 600 meters would be ideal for a nuclear explosion, like the one caused by the Hiroshima bomb that exploded at that very same altitude.

An IAEA report from May 2011, validated the concerns that were raised during the 2008 briefing. It detailed a military research program that was based on "the removal of the conventional high explosive payload from the warhead of the Shahab-3 missile and replacing it with a spherical nuclear payload."

Ironically, Rouhani spoke at a military parade in Tehran before heading out to New York. Significantly, on the front of the lead vehicle of a line of trucks transporting Shahab-3 missiles, there appears a banner that reads: "Israel should cease to exist."

There is no way that this kind of activity can be characterized as being part of a "civilian nuclear program," no matter how smooth Rouhani's performance will be during his visit to New York. Tellingly, in recent years, Iran has firmly rejected Western requests to inspects its weapons complex at Parchin, where much of this warhead development is believed to take place. In the last year, anticipating pressures to open up Parchin to inspections, the Iranians undertook a large concealment operation and poured asphalt over areas it thought the IAEA might want to visit.

Rouhani became famous for his remarks in 2005, when he was head nuclear negotiator and national security adviser to former Iranian President Mohammad Khatami, at which time he admitted to having exploited the time of the negotiations with the EU-3 (Britain, France, and Germany) so that Iran could complete its conversion plant in Isfahan, where the fuel that is inserted into the centrifuges is produced. He brilliantly used diplomacy to allow the Iranian nuclear program to advance, while giving the Western powers the feeling that Iran was making concessions at the same time.

This is precisely the sort of formula he will seek now as he launches new negotiations with the Obama administration. Only this time, Iran is far closer to its goal of manufacturing nuclear weapons than it was in 2005. The West will have to be extremely careful to see to it that Iran offers tangible concessions and not just empty generalities about its desire for peace, if its drive for nuclear weapons is to be truly stopped, and the security of the Middle East protected.

Dore Gold


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Dangerous Times: Nobody can Deny Violent Islam

by James Lewis

No one can deny the nature of jihad after last week's horrors in Kenya were broadcast around the world. Everybody who saw the brutal Nairobi mall killings gets it. But our profoundly corrupt and Muslim-penetrated media and political class will keep denying those horrors. British PM David Cameron just made the usual nauseating pronouncement that "Islam means peace." 

The ruling classes in the West were able to twist and cover up the truth after 9/11. They are desperate to peddle denial, because they are deeply afraid that popular outrage will destroy their power. Hillary hired a Muslim Brotherhood loyalist, Huma Abedin, as her top aide. Our political/media class is therefore completely invested in covering up a clear and present danger. They must therefore be defeated in the next election.

Hassan Rouhani's "Big Smile" offensive in New York this week is a perfect demonstration of the double-talk of Islamic war. Rouhani is the killer who oversaw the truck bombing of the U.S. Marine Lebanon barracks in 1983, killing 299 young U.S. and French peacekeeping troops. Killer Rouhani was greeted with a wave of favorable publicity by the New York Times this week. Muslims like Rouhani will stab you to the heart with a smile. It is their doctrine. You can watch them laughing today because they know they are winning.

Jihad starts with the absolute goal of converting all the infidels in the world or killing them. Islamic war doctrine sets out strategies for world conquest, like suicide terrorism, war propaganda and intimidation, deception and betrayal, infiltration and sabotage. Finally, each strategy is carried out in a set of deliberate tactics, adapted to the age of the web. This is a war theology from top to bottom. The resulting threat of imperialist Islam is as great as the threat of imperialist Communism during the 70-year reign of the Soviet Union.

War theologies are not rare in history. The last really dangerous case was Japan's Bushido cult, with its worship of the divine emperor. By publicly bowing down to the King of Saudi Arabia, Obama was bowing to the war theology of Islam. That is not how Americans saw it -- but dogmatic Muslims got the message. Obama's deep bow carried a double message, like so many of the things he does.

Something has changed today, because for normal people, denial is fading. For two decades our leftist ruling class has fought against openly recognizing the reality of the Jihad War, ever since the first Twin Towers bombing in 1993. Instead, the left has systematically weakened our defenses. The Clintons built a wall between foreign and domestic intelligence involving terrorism, as if Islamist terrorism is not a single ideological movement. The result was 9/11/01. That was the greatest victory of war Islam since the Ottoman Empire crumbled in World War I. We now know that the Clinton Center is a conduit for funneling money from the Muslim Brotherhood to the Hillary campaign. That explains Huma Abedin being at the center of that campaign. 

After killing Osama bin Laden, Obama told Americans he was winning the war on terror; but in fact he enabled Islamist imperialism by stirring up the phony "Arab Spring" in the Middle East, destroying stable governments like Egypt, and openly supporting the Muslim Brotherhood. The MB's are a radical war cult. They were responsible for assassinating Anwar Sadat, the Egyptian leader who made thirty years of Arab peace with Israel and the West. Their publicly stated ambition is "to die in the way of Allah," and everybody understands what that means. Everybody except ordinary Americans who are still blind to reality.

It is now beyond question that the MB has bought immense political power among leftist political and media elites in the United States and Europe.

That is why our defense against war Islam has been so feeble.

The MB's corrupt money flow to the United States was exposed just last week, in outstanding research by the Center for Security Policy. This story must go viral if we are to survive.
"The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) conceals donations from overseas through a series of shell organizations, according to documents from court actions involving the Muslim advocacy group....CAIR is required to report to the IRS contributions over $5,000. Its shifting 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) branches, however, make it possible to collect millions of dollars from oil-rich Muslim nations without disclosure. ...
CAIR's convoluted structure and funding machinations are dizzying. Today, the original Council on American Islamic Relations doesn't exist at all. In June 2013, CAIR changed its name to the nondescriptly named Washington Trust Foundation, Inc. (WTF)."
Obama has carried out a deliberate double-talk policy, a policy of taqqiya (holy double-talk) against the modern world. He has systematically ignored Muslim radicalism -- Iran being the most in-your-face example, as we are seeing with the master of lies, President Rouhani today. Iran is only fifty miles from Saudi Arabia and the cities of Mecca and Medina. Those two countries, Iran and Saudi Arabia, are the biggest sources of Muslim terrorist ideology, financing, and recruitment. Iran and Arabia constantly agitate against the West.

( translates those daily threats into English. It is an indispensable source of truth in this time of war. Our disloyal media always cover up the truth.)

We cannot beat the Global Jihad without stopping the wellsprings of hatred. That may not mean waging a global war, but it must mean immense pressure against the war regimes to stop their constant spread of war propaganda against us. If they will not stop, they must be toppled. Jihad regimes are hated by their own peoples, which is why they cannot let go of domestic brutality. Both Iran and Saudi Arabia are fundamentally unstable, and can be toppled. They must be given a Putin-style ultimatum, not an Obama-style speech.

The war Muslims respect Putin because his threats are real. They have nothing but contempt for the West. So far they have been proven right. That is why Vladimir Putin, the new Tsar, is the key to winning the Global Jihad. We must obtain his cooperation, because Russia cannot want a nuclear suicide cult with ICBMs near its own borders. Putin is not a democratic ruler, to say the least. But in this war, it is in his own vital interest to negotiate an alliance with us.

When the Jihad goes nuclear next year, Russia, Europe, Asia, and the United States will be permanently threatened by missiles from suicide cults. That was the threat George W. Bush warned against in the clearest language, and in spite of Democratic hatred of Bush, it is completely obvious he was right. If civilized nations survive this assault, history will smile kindly on the Bush/Cheney administration.

Our leftist power class has actively connived with violent Islam. We know that directly from the public exposure of massive collusion between Saddam Hussein, Jacques Chirac, and Dominique de Villepin in the Oil for Food scandal. We know Tony Blair colluded with Muammar Gadaffi to free the Libyan terrorist who blew up the Pan Am flight over Lockerbie, Scotland. We can guess that Green socialists are funded by oil money, because they have consistently sabotaged domestic energy production for twenty years. Green sabotage keeps up the price of Gulf oil. Nobody is ever punished.

Global Jihad is an ideological war, like the Cold War. It can be won. Terrorist Islam defeats itself when people see images like Kenya, Syria, Iraq, and all the rest. Egypt recently rebelled against the barbarism of the Muslim Brotherhood. In Iran's Green Revolution, young Iranians tried to rebel against the mullahs, and were treated with contempt by Obama and Valerie Jarrett, who was born in Iran and has to understand that horrific regime. There are plenty of people in the Muslim world who don't want to go back to the Dark Ages. They must be supported and encouraged.

The hour is late, and so far civilized peoples have backed down in the face of terrorist bluff and intimidation. But we have immense resilience. We can win the Jihad war the same as we did the Cold War.

But first, we must find a responsible leadership. Our corrupt ruling class must be voted out. 

James Lewis


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