Saturday, January 16, 2016

Palestinian Acts of "Peace" - Guy Millière

by Guy Millière

  • Because terrorist acts against Israelis are almost never described as terrorist acts, Israel is the only country that is found guilty of defending itself against terrorism. Israel is the only country living next to a terrorist entity, and asked not to treat it as a terrorist entity.
  • The illusion of the Oslo Accords was that the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) could become a respectable, law-abiding government, renounce violence, and abide by an agreement. The lies of the Oslo Accords were that the PLO, representing the "Palestinian people," was ready to exchange "land for peace" and actually desired to create a state living in peace side by side with Israel.
  • Many Europeans are falling for Joseph Goebbels's formula, that "If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it." Israel is now -- solely from propaganda and the falsification of history -- possibly the most unjustly demonized nation in history.
  • Israel is the only country that is always supposed to make "more concessions" to enemies who do not even hide their destructive intentions.

The Greek Parliament, on December 22, 2015, voted unanimously on a motion calling on Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to recognize the "State of Palestine."

Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas, who was on an official visit to Athens, took the opportunity to say that the PA would no longer accept being called by any other name, and that passports with "State of Palestine" would be issued with this name.

The Deputy Foreign Minister of Israel, Tzipi Hotevely, responded by saying that Mahmoud Abbas was following a "flawed path that will lead him nowhere." Israel's former Ambassador to Canada, Alan Baker, in a report for the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, noted that this was a "clear and flagrant violation of the Oslo agreements."

Abbas may well have chosen a "flawed path," but he seems to be going forward with it, doubtless hoping to increase the number of countries that recognize the non-existent "State of Palestine."

Abbas also continues to violate the once much-trumpeted Oslo Accords -- but they were violated from the start. They effectively did not even exist. They were based on an illusion, and based on lies.

The illusion was that the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) could become a respectable, law-abiding government, renounce violence, and abide by an agreement.

The lies were that the PLO, representing the "Palestinian people," was ready to exchange "territories for peace" and actually desired to create a state living in peace side by side with Israel.

The illusion was quickly shattered. In 1993, as soon as the Oslo Accord was signed, PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat, while visiting Johannesburg, compared it to the truce of Hudaibiya, a temporary agreement Muhammad signed with the Qurayesh tribe in 628 AD. In the truce, Muhammad had promised not to attack the tribe for ten years; but two years after that, when he had assembled more troops, he broke the truce, attacked with full force, and massacred the Qurayesh.

When Arafat became Chairman of the Palestinian Authority a few days later, he wasted no time in showing that the PA was still the PLO and that he had renounced exactly nothing.

Murderous attacks have hit Israel ever since then. They only declined when Israel built a defensive security barrier.

In the decade after Oslo, 1,400 Israelis were killed in terrorist attacks; thousands more were injured but survived, still mutilated.

In 2000 the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades came into being -- the "military" wing of the "moderate" Palestinian Authority ruling party, Fatah. As the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades organized suicide attacks and planted bombs, other Islamist terrorist groups also gained in importance, especially Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

The Palestinian Authority created anti-Israeli and anti-Jewish media from the start. PA schools were established and immediately began teaching that hating Jews is important.

Palestinian Authority leaders negotiated with Israel, but the PA would never recognize Israel as a state for the Jewish people.

The PA also never stopped demanding innocent-sounding, "poison pill" concessions that would have meant the destruction of Israel. These included the "right of return," possibly for almost as many Palestinians as Israel's population. This demand has been a constant that would demographically overwhelm the Jews with Palestinians -- as if France were required admit 60 million Muslims.

Sadly, the Palestinians have only increased their violence. There have been more than 11,000 rocket attacks on a country not even as big as Vancouver Island. But most political leaders and journalists in the West stubbornly refuse to see it this way.

Successive Israeli governments have been prompted to behave as if they could not see that an unending series of onslaughts was happening to them. The Israelis have been told behave as if they had before them people with whom they could actually agree. It would be as if France were ordered to reach an agreement with al-Qaeda.

The late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin's remark, that Israel has to "negotiate as if there were no terrorism," was repeated to them endlessly, as if terrorist murders were not daily taking place all around them.

Some Israeli governments offered to cede almost everything to the Palestinians. Ehud Olmert in 2008 went so far as to propose a total withdrawal from Judea and Samaria (the entire West Bank), and to abandon Israel's control over the Old City of Jerusalem; many Israeli political and military leaders told him such a withdrawal was a suicidal proposition. The Palestinians turned it down without so much as a counter-offer.

Over time, lies gain ground. Palestinians terrorist acts are often no longer described as terrorist acts but as "acts of resistance" against the "occupation."

The Palestinian Authority is now trying to be recognized as "State of Palestine" in the hope that words will make it so, despite its own signed commitments to negotiations, meaning that it too might have to offer something -- maybe an end to incitement (already agreed to under Oslo. but never implemented); the end of the conflict, perhaps recognition of Israel.

The Palestinian Authority is now an "observer state" at the United Nations. Abbas, now in the eleventh year of his four-year term, is received everywhere as a legitimate President. He does not say -- and no one else does either -- that he would not be alive today if Israel were not protecting him. Hamas has long been trying to kill him and supplant his government with its own.

Almost no one dares translate into English the bloodthirsty remarks Abbas makes in Arabic.
Palestinian leaders rewrite history, and many Europeans even buy it. Many now believe that the Palestinian people existed since "ancient times," and are one of the most "oppressed" peoples on earth.

Palestinian leaders often state -- without even being contradicted even by the Church! -- that Jesus was a Palestinian. They deny he was born a Jew in a Jewish family. They asked -- and got ! -- UNESCO (in which "Palestine" has been a full member since 2011) to rename ancient Jewish sites as Islamic. According to a resolution passed on October 21, 2015 by UNESCO's General Conference, Rachel's Tomb is now "Bilal bin Rabah Mosque" and the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron is the "Ibrahimi Mosque."

In most Western media, Judea and Samaria are presented as "occupied Palestinian territories" and Israel is described as the "occupying power."

The presence of Jews in the West Bank -- home to the Jews for nearly 4,000 years -- is depicted as an "illegal intrusion." Yet people who presumably pass out at even the thought of ethnic cleansing anywhere, seem to have no problem with all Jews being expelled from Judea and Samaria -- and a future "State of Palestine."

These lies have placed Israel in a dangerous position.

Israel has a powerful army and a prosperous and dynamic economy. But Israel, a very small country, is possibly the most-threatened nation in the world. And because terrorist acts against Israelis are almost never described as terrorist acts, Israel is the only country that is found guilty of defending itself against terrorism. Israel is also the only country living next to a terrorist entity, and asked not to treat it as a terrorist entity.

Many Europeans are falling for Joseph Goebbels's supposed formula, that If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it." Israel is now -- solely from propaganda and the falsification of history -- possibly the most unjustly demonized nation in history.

It is a country subjected to incessant diplomatic offensives by its enemies, end even by people -- such as J Street and the New Israel Fund -- that call themselves "friends." Israel is the only country that is always supposed to make "more concessions" to enemies who do not even hide their destructive intentions.

The Oslo Accords have been described as an act of peace. They were actually -- for the Palestinians -- an act of war.

They were a huge victory for the PLO, which was able to advance from there to other victories. The Palestinians set out, in their never-rescinded plan, to take over Israel by "stages" in their "Ten Point Plan."

The current Israeli government, like those that preceded it, adopts a defensive attitude, and seems to manage the status quo.

Malicious attacks continue from self-righteous Jew-haters, who pretend it is only Israel they dislike. The BDS movement keeps trying to find traction; fortunately, Israel has expanded its commerce to the Far East, where it is booming. The European Union recently decided to ask member countries to put discriminatory labels on products made by Jewish businesses located beyond the "borders of 1967", which were only armistice lines (at the Arabs' request) -- and never borders to begin with. Smear campaigns against Israel grow and disseminate their venom.

In Israel, Minister of Justice Ayelet Shaked proposed a law requiring non-governmental organizations (NGOs) operating in Israel to declare all funding from foreign governments. "The blatant intervention of foreign countries in the State of Israel's internal matters through funding is an unprecedented phenomenon that violates all the rules and norms of relations between democratic countries," she stated.

The proposal is a step in the right direction: in the United States, organizations financed from abroad are subject to severe constraints.

More needs to be done. Inside Israel, various NGOs, under the pretext of "free speech," circulate seditious, anti-Israeli propaganda. They are internal enemies. They forge false evidence and send it to countries who want to drag Israel -- but no other country -- to the International Criminal Court. Such NGOs should be should be treated as the internal enemies that they are.

During the last years of his life, because he encouraged suicide attacks and incited children to seek death as martyrs, the Israeli government confined Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat to his Muqata presidential compound in Ramallah.

Because Mahmoud Abbas, the current Palestinian leader accused Israeli Jews of "desecrating" Al Aqsa Mosque with their "filthy feet," and added that "blood spilled in defense of the holy site is pure,", he bears direct responsibility for the current wave of murders of Israeli Jews. The Israeli government could confine him to his Muqata as they did with Arafat, and truthfully explain that a man who is guilty of incitement to murder innocent civilians going about their daily lives must not be allowed to roam freely.

Yasser Arafat (L) and Mahmoud Abbas, pictured in a Fatah propaganda poster. The Arabic text reads "Bearer of the trust" on top, and on the bottom: "I call on you to hold onto national unity. It is more precious than all of us."

The Israeli government could also honestly say that no negotiations are possible with an organization that supports terrorism, and teaches children to hate Jews.

The Israeli government could go even further, and explain to the world that the Palestinian Authority itself is still a terrorist organization, and cut off all political, economic and financial relationships with it.

The Western world should be asking Israel to stop supporting an organization, the Palestinian Authority, that daily backs terrorism; and Israel should be asking the Western world to stop supporting an organization, the Palestinian Authority, that supports terrorism and is on its way to creating yet another terrorist state -- especially at a time when the international terrorist threat is so intense and pervasive.

Of course, many European leaders would probably answer that they see only one terrorist state: Israel. Surreally, an EU court in December 2014 even removed Hamas from the EU list of banned terrorist organizations.

For now, while chaos is gaining momentum in the Middle East, the "Palestinian question" is far from a central concern for Muslim countries in the region. The main aim of Saudi Arabia is to survive the attempts to destabilize it coming from Iran. Some Saudi leaders might now even regard Israel as an ally.

In Egypt, the priority of its President, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, is to contend with the deadly conflict in the Sinai.

At the same time, Iran is busy spreading terrorism and racing toward nuclear weapons capability, as well as the intercontinental ballistic missiles to deliver them. Iran is also breaking records executing its own citizens; holding political prisoners on trumped-up charges; saving what remains of the Assad regime in Syria and, with Russia, bolstering the power of the Hezbollah terrorist group in Lebanon.

Both Iran and the Islamic State do not hide their genocidal intentions towards Israel. Recently Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's "Supreme Leader," unveiled his plans for Israel's destruction.

In the midst of all this, John Kerry recently said something right: "Circumstances" lead "to seriously consider the possibility of the collapse of the Palestinian Authority."

The wave of murders triggered by Abbas at the beginning of September has had catastrophic effects on the finances of the Palestinian Authority. After Mahmoud Abbas has left the scene, an attempted takeover by Hamas or ISIS is virtually inevitable.

Kerry correctly added that "several Israeli ministers have made clear their opposition to a Palestinian state." It would be more accurate to say that several Israeli ministers seem to think that creating a state destined to become a terrorist state would be an extremely bad idea.

A few days ago, Israel's Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told high-level government officials that Israel has to "prevent the collapse of the Palestinian Authority, but be prepared in case the collapse occurs."

Opinion polls show that more than 75% of the Israeli Arabs define themselves as Israeli, and that more than 60% of them unreservedly define Israel as a Jewish country. The polls also show that 18% of Israeli Arabs support violence against the Jews.

For two decades, Israeli Arabs and Arabs living in Judea and Samaria have been poisoned by propaganda from the Palestinian Authority -- from textbooks; from official statements such as naming stadiums, streets and public squares after terrorists, and from the PA government-controlled media. The Palestinian people deserve a better leadership than this. Their current destructive leadership, and the even more destructive leadership that could well follow it, should not be encouraged -- by treacherous Europeans or anyone else.

Guy Millière, a professor at the University of Paris, has published 27 books.


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

How (and Why) Palestinian Leaders Scare the World - Khaled Abu Toameh

by Khaled Abu Toameh

  • Abbas has perfected the art of financial extortion. Every Monday and Thursday, as it were, the Palestinian Authority (PA) president has threatened to resign and/or dissolve the PA. This tactic has a twofold aim: cold hard European and American cash, and a gaze directed away from the PA's turmoil.
  • The PA wants the following response from the international community: "Oh my God, we must do something to salvage the peace process. We need to put even more pressure on these Israelis before matters get out of hand."
  • Abbas wants the world's eyes on Israel -- and Israel alone. That way, the fierce behind-the-scenes battle for succession that has been raging among the top brass of the Palestinian leadership in the West Bank will stay far from the limelight.
  • The PA seeks a solution imposed upon Israel by the international community. Why negotiate when Western powers are prepared to do everything to see Israel brought to its knees?

What do you do when your home has become hell?

If you are Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, you divert attention from the mess as fast as possible.

For a start, Abbas is trying to scare the international community into believing that without increased pressure on Israel, the Palestinian Authority (PA) will be forced to resort to unilateral measures, such as attempting to create new "facts on the ground" in the West Bank.

Next, Abbas is threatening to renew the Palestinian call for convening an international conference for peace in the Middle East and to step up rhetorical attacks against Israel.

Finally, Abbas has perfected the art of financial extortion. Every Monday and Thursday, as it were, the PA president has threatened to resign and/or dissolve the PA. This tactic has a twofold aim: cold hard European and American cash and a gaze directed away from the PA's turmoil.

Abbas wants the world's eyes on Israel -- and Israel alone. That way, the fierce behind-the-scenes battle for succession that has been raging among the top brass of the Palestinian leadership in the West Bank will stay far from the limelight.

This week, Abbas's spokesman, Nabil Abu Rudaineh, announced that the Palestinian Authority was coordinating with Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan in order to create "facts on the ground" to establish a Palestinian state.

This announcement was designed to tighten the international screws on Israel. The threat to "create facts on the ground" was a direct message to the US and the EU that they had better push Israel farther -- and faster -- or the Palestinians would be left with no recourse but to build in Area C of the West Bank, currently under exclusive Israeli control.

Yet Palestinian building in Area C is not just a threat. In fact, and thanks to the financial and logistical aid of the EU, Palestinians have already begun building that project in some parts of the West Bank.

What the PA wants is the following response from the international community: "Oh my God, we must do something to salvage the peace process. We need to put even more pressure on these Israelis before matters get out of hand."

The PA seeks a solution imposed upon Israel by the international community. This has been quite clear for some time, but the PA spokesman's recent announcement leaves no room for doubt. Abbas has no incentive whatsoever to return to the negotiating table with Israel. Why negotiate when Western powers are prepared to do everything to see Israel brought to its knees?

As part of this strategy, Abbas last week renewed his call for an international conference to discuss "ways of solving the Palestinian cause." According to the PA president, the international community that has reached understandings that Syria, Libya and Iran should be able to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

This is nothing but an Abbas scare-tactics redux. Radical Islam and terrorism, so we are to believe, will be conquered by solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The president of the PA desires to implant in the minds of the West a direct link between the Islamic State terror group (ISIS) and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

But Abbas might have done well to check in with his sources. ISIS and the other terror groups currently destroying the Arab world do not give a damn about Israeli settlements or checkpoints. Nor is a two-state solution on their docket. These groups have a different agenda -- to conquer the world and establish an Islamic empire. En route to achieving their aim, the Muslim terrorists will kill "apostates" and "infidels" including Abbas and other Arab leaders.

"President Abbas's call for an international conference reflects the state of confusion and wallowing he is in," remarked former Palestinian cabinet minister Hassan Asfour. "The appeal is designed to search for an unclear and jellied formula and it has no legitimacy." Asfour noted that there was no need for such a conference, in light of the fact that the UN already recognized a Palestinian state in 2012.

So what exactly is Abbas trying to achieve? For the most part, Palestinian political analysts are convinced that the eighty-year-old president, who is about to enter the eleventh year of his four-year term in office, is simply seeking to hold onto the reins of power. The best way to do so, they argue, is by keeping up the buzz about international conferences and potential Palestinian unilateral moves on the ground.

In order to run the Palestinian show until his last day, Abbas needs to divert attention from the battle of succession that has hit the spotlight in the past few days. Top Fatah officials have been pushing him to appoint a deputy president, in the hope of forestalling a power vacuum upon his departure from the scene for one reason or another.

These officials have long censured Abbas for running the PA as if it were his private fiefdom. Among the critics are Jibril Rajoub, Tawkif Tirawi, Mohamed Dahlan, Salam Fayyad and Yasser Abed Rabbo -- all of whom regard themselves as potential successors to his seat.

Mohamed Dahlan (right), a former PA security commander in the Gaza Strip, is one of the major critics and rivals of PA President Mahmoud Abbas (left), and hopes to succeed him in the presidency. (Image sources: U.S. State Dept., M. Dahlan Office)

Meanwhile, Abbas's preferred candidate for deputy president appears to be none other than Saeb Erekat, the PLO's chief negotiator who was recently upgraded to the post of PLO Secretary-General. This choice, however, is not going down well with Fatah officials, many of whom have expressed their opposition to the attempt to pave the way for Erekat to become the next Palestinian president.

A direct link does exist, then, but it is not, as Abbas contends, one between ISIS and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The true direct link is between the urgency Abbas feels at home to prop up a crumbling empire and his intimidation of the international community. In other words, when Abbas feels the heat, Israel is thrown into the fire.
  • Follow Khaled Abu Toameh on Twitter

Khaled Abu Toameh is an award-winning journalist based in Jerusalem.


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

Winds of change in the Arab sector - Prof. Amnon Rubenstein

by Prof. Amnon Rubenstein

Recent polls suggest the overwhelming majority of Israeli Arabs prefer peaceful coexistence over any form of violence • Steps must be taken to make the most out of this momentum.

Prof. Amnon Rubenstein


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

Putin bypasses Israel, sets up joint war room for S. Syria with Jordan - debkaFile

by debkaFile

--the center of gravity of Jordan’s military and intelligence efforts will be redirected to the new center with Russia, representing a major earthquake in those areas.

In a pivotal step reflecting the changeability of military and political deals in Israel’s neighborhood, Jordan has almost overnight agreed to establish a shared war room with Russia for the concerted conduct of their operations in Syria. This represents an extreme reversal of Amman’s policy. Until now, Jordan fought against Russia’s protégée Bashar Assad from a joint war room north of Amman called the US Central Command Forward-Jordan, as part of a lineup with the US, Saudi Arabia and Israel.

But this week Jordan shifted onto a new plane.

debkafile’s military and intelligence sources say Jordanian King Abdullah’s decision to team up with Moscow starts a whole new ball game rolling on policy-making and intelligence-sharing. He doesn’t plan to shut down his shared command center with the US and Israel, but the center of gravity of Jordan’s military and intelligence efforts will be redirected to the new center with Russia, representing a major earthquake in those areas.

Amman is working hard to downplay the new partnership, presenting it as designed to foster better coordination between the American and Russian military efforts in Syria and the war on the Islamic State.

That picture is misleading.

With all due respect to the Jordanian monarch, his military and his intelligence services, they are not exactly qualified for the role of coordinator between the two world powers. The US and Russian presidents handle this in person. And in fact, the new Russian-Jordanian war room did come up, according to our Washington and Moscow sources, in the latest telephone conversation between the two presidents on Jan. 13.

Obama then held a quick meeting with King Abdullah at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland and asked for an explanation.   

For the various rebel militias holding out in large parts of southern Syria, including the Israeli border regions, the new Jordanian-Russian war room is bad news. Hitherto, Jordan provided the rebels with their main pipeline for fighters, weapons and funds from the US, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. The US even ran training camps in Jordan for Syrian rebel fighters.

This pipeline is now likely to be shut down or reduced to a minimum.

The Jordanians gloss over their shift, claiming it is designed to force the Syrian rebels of the South to accept a ceasefire and join peace talks with the US and Russia on Syria’s future. That is no more than diplomatic-speak for the real purpose, which is to compel them to give up the fight against Assad, and make way for Moscow to achieve its key objective, which is to restore the Assad regime’s control over the South.

Ever since his major intervention in Syria, Putin has tried to persuade Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to pull the rug from under the Israeli-backed rebels in the South. They are deemed as a necessary buffer for securing Israel's northern border and blocking the reimposition of Assad's authority there..

The content of the exchanges between Putin and Netanyahu has only been shared with tight circles of confidants in Jerusalem and the Kremlin, so little is reliably known about their areas of agreement and dispute.

There is no doubt that the prime minister spoke firmly about Israel’s abiding concern that, once Assad regained control of the South, he would open the door up to the Israeli border and let in his allies and Israel’s arch enemies, Hizballah and the mostly-Iraqi Shiite militias fighting under the command of officers from Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps.

By teaming up with Jordan for a joint war room to cover operations in southern Syria, Putin has gone around Netanyahu’s back and acquired a helper for evicting Syrian rebels from southern Syria.



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Liars or Fools: Which Govern America? - Raymond Ibrahim

by Raymond Ibrahim

It’s one or the other when it comes to the mainstream narrative on Islam.

Raymond Ibrahim is a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center.

When it comes to the connection between Islam and “anti-infidel” violence, one fact must be embraced: the majority of those in positions of leadership and authority in America are either liars or fools, or both. No other alternative exist.

The reason for this uncharitable assertion is simple: If Islam was once a faraway, exotic religion, now hardly a day goes by without Americans hearing calls for, and seeing acts of, violence committed in the name of Islam.  If our leaders don’t, many of us still have “ears that hear and eyes that see” (Proverbs 20:12).

Today, Muslims from all around the world and from all walks of life unequivocally and unapologetically proclaim that Islam commands them to kill or subjugate all who resist it—including all non-Muslims.

This message is hardly limited to jihadi groups like the Islamic State.  It’s the official position of several Muslim governments (including America’s closest “friends and allies,” like Saudi Arabia and Qatar, as demonstrated in a forthcoming article); it’s the official position of Islamic institutions of lower and higher learning, including Al Azhar, the world’s most prestigious Islamic university; and it’s the official position broadcast in numerous languages on Islamic satellite stations.

In short, there’s no excuse for ignorance about Islam in America—especially if you hold a position of leadership or authority.  Yet it is precisely those in such positions who vehemently deny any connection between Islam and violence.  Why?

The most recent example took place on January 7.  Edward Archer, a convert to Islam, shot and wounded Philadelphia police officer Jesse Hartnett.  He later explained his motivation: “I follow Allah. I pledge my allegiance to the Islamic state. That is why I did what I did.”

Yet after showing a surveillance video of Archer in Islamic dress shooting at Hartnett, Philadelphia mayor Jim Kenney emphatically declared:

In no way shape or form does anyone in this room believe that Islam or the teaching of Islam has anything to do with what you’ve seen on the screen….It is abhorrent. It is terrible and it does not represent the religion or any of its teachings. This is a criminal with a stolen gun who tried to kill one of our officers. It has nothing to do with being a Muslim or following the Islamic faith.

Kenney’s assertions are either the product of an addled brain or calculated lies.  Take your pick, but there are no other alternatives.

If those running the show still don’t “get it,” the overwhelming majority of Americans have by now learned, in Donald Trump’s words, that “there’s something going on” with Islam, “You see the hatred.  I mean, we see it every day.”

“We see it every day” is absolutely correct—hence why those who deny it must either be liars or fools.   (See “Muslim Persecution of Christians,” reports which I’ve been compiling every month since July 2011, and witness the nonstop violence and carnage committed against non-Muslim minorities living under Islam.)

Still, Kenney’s falsehoods and/or foolishness are mainstream.  Most politicians—practically every democrat but also a majority of republicans—makes the same claims, beginning with U.S. President Obama who insists  that the Islamic State “is not Islamic,” calls for the “rejection by non-Muslims of the ignorance that equates Islam with terror,” and classified the Fort Hood massacre as “workplace violence,” despite the overwhelming evidence that it was jihad.

More recently, democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton admonished us to get aboard the wishful thinking bandwagon: “Muslims are peaceful and tolerant people and have nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism.”  Republican leaders like John McCain say that “unequivocally, without a doubt, the religion of Islam is an honorable and reasonable religion.  ISIS has nothing to do with the reality of Islam.”  “Conservative” talking heads like Bill O’Reilley flippantly dismiss jihad as “a perversion of Islam, we all know that.”

And so it goes.  In the context of the most recent slaughter of Americans at the hands of Muslims—one last December and one last November, both in California—the usual chorus of politicians, media, and others made the same tired claims.

Despite the evidence that the Muslim couple that massacred 14 people in San Bernardino was motivated by Islamic teachings of jihad against the hated “infidel,” Obama claimed “We do not know their motivations.” Chris Hayes and MSNBC were also “baffled” in their search for a motive.

Despite the many indicators that the Muslim student who went on a stabbing spree in UC Merced was motivated by Islam—he was described as a “devout Muslim,” had an ISIS flag, and praised Allah in his manifesto—“local and federal authorities continue to insist that Faisal Mohammad, 18, carried out the vicious attack because he’d been banished from a study group.”

In response, the father of Byron Price, who was stabbed while defending some Merced victims, observed that, “Everyone is afraid to be politically incorrect… [I]t seems like to me we aren’t getting the whole story. I just wonder how much of this is driven from way higher up and is politically driven — I just don’t know.”

Unfortunately, it was one thing to be politically correct when America existed in a utopian bubble away from all the nastiness “over there,” but to be politically correct at this late hour when the tentacles of the global jihad are well entrenched in America is suicidal, literally. 

Either way, political correctness is a fancy way of saying “lying”— bringing us right back to our question and a final observation: It doesn’t matter if those running the show are liars or fools, for at day’s end, the result is the same: the world’s strongest nation lays paralyzed before a vicious threat that grows more emboldened by the day.

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


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The Real War on Women in a Nightmarish Islamic State - Dr. Majid Rafizadeh

by Dr. Majid Rafizadeh

How the Islamic Republic hates, tortures and kills females.

When it comes to executions, girls are systematically more vulnerable due to the Islamist penal code of Sharia law.

Let’s take a look at the Islamist state of Iran, which creates its laws from the legal codes of Sharia and Quran. The first type of discrimination is related to age: girls are held criminally accountable at the maturity age of 9 Lunar years. (This will automatically put girls at a higher risk of execution by the court.)

Iranian ruling politicians hold the highest record when it comes to the most executions per capita in the world. Intriguingly, in the last two years that the so-called moderate, Hassan Rouhani, has been in office, there have been more than 2000 executions conducted in Iran. That is nearly 3-4 executions a day.

More importantly, Iranian leaders are also the largest executioner of women and female juveniles. Some of these executions were carried out on the mullahs’ charge of ‘Moharebeh’ (enmity with Allah), or waging war against Allah, ifsad-i Fil Arz (Sowing Corruption on Earth), or Sab-i Nabi (Insulting the Prophet).

There are three methods of execution for women and female juveniles: 1. Stoning  2. Public hanging 3. Shooting. Some women are also beaten so severely in the prison that they die before reaching the execution. Shooting, which is the fastest method of the three for execution, has not been used since 2008. Instead, the most common method to execute women is public hanging or stoning. Some of these women are flogged right before they are hanged. Public hanging not only imposes fears in the society but also aims at dehumanizing and controlling women as second-class citizens. According to the Islamist penal code of Iran, women offenses are classified as: Hadd, Diyyih, Ta`zir, and Qisas.

Some of these women are stoned for adultery. But even in stoning, the Islamists and Sharia law differentiate between men and women. Women are buried to the neck while men are buried to the waist. This allows some men to be capable of running away from the stoning, while women do not have a chance for survival, at all. If women are still alive after hours of stoning, a large block normally is smashed over their head.

Women from ethnic and religious minorities, as well as political dissidents, have also been targets of these executions. Based on the latest report, Ahmed Shaheed, the U.N.’s special “rapporteur” on human rights in Iran, pointed out that executing individuals from religious and ethnic minority groups are carried out because those victims were “exercising their protected rights, including freedom of expression and association…..When the Iranian government refuses to even acknowledge the full extent of executions which have occurred, it shows a callous disregard for both human dignity and international human rights law.”

In the latest report, Amnesty International announced: “Execution of two juvenile offenders in just a few days makes a mockery of Iran’s juvenile justice system.” And the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned Iran and warned about the rise of executions in Iran which "reflect a worrying trend in Iran….Over 700 executions are reported to have taken place so far this year, including at least 40 public, marking the highest total recorded in the past 12 years."

In many of these cases related to women and female juveniles, it is clear that they were executed for either self-defense against forced marriage or a rapist, or for charges such as freedom of expression. They often are forced to marry at a very young age to an older person, or someone they do not like, such as in the case of the child bride, Farzaneh (Razieh) Moradi - who was forced to marry at the age of 15 and was executed in the city of Esfahan. These women were beaten and raped, repeatedly, by their spouses or relatives until they could not take it anymore and defended themselves. Some of these girls are being imprisoned and executed based on the fabricated charges of possessing opium. For example, in the case of the 16-year-old Sogand, the police found opium in her father’s house, but because there was no one at home except her, they arrested her. She is still in prison as none of her family members have come forward to save her life.

Some of these executions are based on the issue of “honor.” For example, some of these girls follow their hearts and fall in love with someone they choose themselves. But since their brothers and fathers disagree with this, the females get punished. For example, in the case of Mahsa, a seventeen-year-old, her brothers are the ones seeking her execution. In addition, if an Iranian Muslim woman has sex with a Christian or Jewish person, she will be executed (but a Muslim man is allowed to have sex with non-Muslim women).

Some of these girls are raped, repeatedly, in the process of investigation and forced into “Sighah”- the Shiite Islamist law of temporary marriage - with a cleric, or a member of Etela’at (intelligence), or Revolutionary Guard Corps before they are executed. Amnesty International previously pointed out that there are a “considerable” number of reports regarding this issue.

While the West is looking to lift sanctions against Iranian leaders in a few days and normalize ties with Iran, it is critical to look at the egregious human rights violations that this country is allowing. Is being silent and turning a blind eye to these human rights abuses appropriate? Doesn’t normalizing ties with the Iranian leaders and releasing billions of dollars to them, facilitate their efforts of executing more people, including women and child girls?

Dr. Majid Rafizadeh an Iranian-American political scientist and scholar, is president of the International American Council and serves on the board of the Harvard International Review at Harvard University. Rafizadeh is also a former senior fellow at the Nonviolence International Organization based in Washington, DC and is a member of the Gulf Project at Columbia University. He can be reached at Follow Rafizadeh at @majidrafizadeh.


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The New Terror Threat: Organized Rape - Abigail R. Esman

by Abigail R. Esman

European officials have done little to stop these widely reported atrocities, fearing charges of racism and "Islamophobia."

It was a different kind of terrorist attack: a carefully orchestrated, coordinated mass rape and sexual assault on hundreds of women across Cologne, Germany amongst the firework celebrations of New Year's Eve. Reports of the attacks describe women desperately fleeing as men pulled at them, groped between their legs, dragged them into alleyways, and witnesses who struggled to rescue them as men threw bottles and fireworks at the police.
Two weeks later, more than 500 women, along with other victims in Hamburg, Stuttgart, and Berlin, have filed complaints, and 22 suspects have been identified. Most of those suspects are asylum-seekers, new arrivals from war-torn Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan who, German officials now say, used the country's open-armed offer of sanctuary to the victims of terrorism as a gateway to wage even more terrorism in the West.

It worked. Across Europe, women have voiced a new fear of being on the streets at night and concern that the attacks in Germany will spread. In fact, they have already. Other such rapes were reported in Finland, Sweden and Austria over New Year's as well, though on a smaller scale.

While this kind of massive, pre-planned act of violence against hundreds of women represents a new tactic in Islamic terrorism, the truth is that it's been brewing, even happening, in random – but constant – attacks for years. For well over a decade, for instance, the Dutch have muttered about second-generation Moroccan youth groping Dutch women, calling them "sluts," and describing them openly as whores. Europe-wide, that view of Western women among immigrant Muslim communities has helped fuel a rash of sexual violence against them.

In 2003, for instance, 15 Moroccan-Dutch youth raped a 22-year-old Dutch woman on a commuter train. Ten years later, a 30-year-old Swedish woman was gang-raped at a refugee housing project.

In Oxford, England, that same year, a gang of seven men of Pakistani and Eritrean origin were convicted of sex trafficking and rape on a wide scale, with as many as 1,400 victims, some as young as 11 and 12 years old. One girl was reportedly forced to have a home-style abortion on a living room floor; she was 12.

Reported the Gatestone Institute at the time, "In graphic testimony, one of the victims told the court that Mohammed Karrar would charge men £500 ($750) to have sex with her. They would take her to homes in High Wycombe where she would be subjected to gang rapes, incidents that she described as 'torture sex.' The men would tie her up and gag her mouth with a ball to stop her cries from being heard. The men would play out abuse fantasies; sometimes she was left bleeding for days afterwards."

More recently, reports of rapes in asylum centers by fellow asylum seekers, who then force their victims into prostitution, have made headlines across Europe, particularly in Germany, even as the gang rapes on European streets continue.

These are not isolated incidents. Rather, they are increasingly a part of European life and culture, emblematic of the clash of sexual and social mores between Muslim immigrants and the European countries in which they now live. Western girls and women dress in ways immigrants from North Africa, the Middle East and much of Southeast Asia (often called the MENASA region) consider "revealing" and "provocative." Muslim girls are expected to remain "pure" until marriage, to cover themselves – if not in burqas and niqabs, then with long sleeves and long skirts or slacks and headscarves.

Against this standard, and aided by film, TV, and popular culture, Western women are seen by MENASA immigrant youth as promiscuous, loose, and willing – a perspective no one in their communities refutes. Add to this the hormones and sexual frustrations of young Muslim men forbidden to engage in sexual activity with Muslim girls, and – often with the loud encouragement of their peers – they sublimate their urges and sexual guilt into shaming these girls with taunts or, in too many cases, by molesting them.

But rape, as is widely known, is more than a sexual act: it is an act of violence and the abuse of power. That has translated in recent years also into the emergence of gangs of so-called "lover-boys," men – largely immigrants from Pakistan and Morocco – who seduce young girls and then force them into prostitution. As early as 2000, reports of these girls working in the windows of Amsterdam's Red Light district hinted at the scope of the problem. Even then, an administrator for the Dutch Salvation Army who worked with local prostitutes told the newspaper Volkskrant, "In the last few years we've seen more and more Dutch girls behind the windows. And Moroccan girls, whom you never saw here before."

Other girls are sent to Belgium by their "lover-boys," who "[a]re all immigrants from Moroccan or Surinamese origin, while their victims are Dutch native girls," Antwerp Police Chief Inspector Jan Piedfort told Belgium's De Morgen.

One such lover-boy described how it works to the Al-Amal Foundation, which supports families and women mostly from the Dutch-Moroccan community. "A Dutch girl, you give compliments, you flatter her, you pamper and indulge her with roses and before you know it she is lying on her back working for you. With a Muslim girl, you go to bed with her, rape her, photograph her and then you have her in your power. Then you can blackmail her: work or I'll show everyone the photo. And a Surinamese or Antillian girl? They're born whores."

All of these trends have paved the way for sexual violence as a natural weapon for jihad in the age of ISIS. Indeed, we've seen it used not just in the mass gang rapes in Europe in recent years, but in the sexual enslavement of Yazidi girls in Syria and Iraq. We've seen it further in ISIS propaganda that even encourages its male members to rape women to bring them "closer to Allah."

Yet European officials have done little to stop these widely reported atrocities, fearing charges of racism and "Islamophobia." Britain's former Labor MP Denis MacShane admitted to the BBC in 2014 that he failed to investigate oppression of Muslim women due to a mindset of, "not wanting to rock the multicultural community boat."

The implicit misogyny in this – that offending Muslim men is somehow worse than the rape and molestation of women, Muslim and not, is striking. If anything good can come of the New Year's attacks, it will not be through the advice of those who, like Cologne Mayor Henriette Reke, suggested women dress more modestly. Rather, it will be through those who recognize that terrorism takes many forms. This is one of them. It is time to start treating it that way.

Abigail R. Esman, the author, most recently, of Radical State: How Jihad Is Winning Over Democracy in the West (Praeger, 2010), is a freelance writer based in New York and the Netherlands.


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Saudi Arabia and Iran: Behind the Rivalry - Derek DeLuca

by Derek DeLuca

Here is what lies behind the conflict.

Relations between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Islamic Republic of Iran have never been particularly good.  But with the execution of Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr on January 2, relations are deteriorating further and faster.

The next day, Sunni Saudi Arabia and Shia Iran severed ties with one another, and each gave the other's diplomatic staff 48 hours to leave the country.  That was in reaction to Iranian demonstrators storming the Saudi embassy in Tehran.  

The BBC reported last Monday that Saudi allies Bahrain and Sudan are also severing diplomatic ties with Iran, giving the Iranian diplomatic staff 48 hours to vacate the respective countries.  The United Arab Emirates, another Saudi ally, has downgraded its diplomatic representation in the Islamic Republic. 

But the current turmoil is only a small aspect of a greater struggle that is as old as Islam itself.  Probably the most important aspect of the schism between the Sunnis and Shiites (Shia) was the succession after the death of the prophet Mohammed.  The Sunnis believed that Mohammed's confidant Abu Bakr should succeed him, while the Shiites have insisted that Ali ibn Abi Taib, Mohammed's son-in-law and cousin, should be the new leader of Islam.

In A.D. 661, Ali was killed by a Sunni faction while at prayer in the Great Mosque of Kufa.  Ali's murder cemented the division between the Sunnis and Shiites.

The defeat of the Ottoman Empire in the First World War would essentially create the endless chaos we see today.  In that context, the single most consequential event with regards to Middle East politics is the Sykes-Picot Pact.  The secret agreement between England and France partitioned much of the former Ottoman Empire into direct-rule regions and spheres of influence.  The two Great Powers attempted to partition the land among tribal and religious lines.  However, according to Tarek Osman of BBC News, "the thinking behind Sykes-Picot did not translate into practice. That meant the newly created borders did not correspond to the actual sectarian, tribal, or ethnic distinctions on the ground."

The Pew Research Center conducted a poll in 2012 that showed that among most of the Sunni Muslims of the Middle East and North Africa, at least forty percent do not accept Shiites as fellow Muslims.

The Middle East and North Africa are, for the most part, divided into Sunni- and Shia-majority countries.  Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Jordan, and Qatar, as well as Pakistan, Somalia, and Indonesia, are Sunni-majority countries.  Bahrain, a Shia-majority country, is ruled by a Sunni monarchy allied to the Saudis.  The government in Bahrain witnessed a major uprising in 2011 during the Arab Spring, and Bahrain accused Iran of supporting the uprising.  Iran and Iraq are Shia-majority countries.  Although Iraq is technically a Shia-majority country, it is close to being evenly split (51% Shia, 42% Sunni).  Iraq, under Saddam Hussein (a Sunni), acted as a counterweight to Shia Iran.  Iraq's government is now under Shia control.  Syria is a Sunni-majority country ruled by an Alawite (Shia sect) minority. Muslims in Yemen and Lebanon are evenly split among Sunnis and Shiites.

Since the 1979 Iranian Revolution, the regime in Tehran has openly criticized the religious legitimacy of the monarchy in Saudi Arabia.  During the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988), Sunni Saudi Arabia backed Sunni Iraq under Saddam Hussein against Shia Iran, which was backed by Syria.

In 1987, during the annual Hajj pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca, Iranian pilgrims began demonstrating against the United States, Israel, and the Saudi government.  The demonstration soon turned violent, and Saudi police moved in.  After the chaos was over, more than 400 people were dead (including 275 Iranian pilgrims and 85 Saudi police), and nearly 650 people were wounded.  In reaction, the Iranian regime called on the Saudi people to overthrow the Saudi monarchy.  The Saudis replied by banning all Iranians from entering the country to take part in the Hajj.

Mecca would see another, even worse, incident.  During the Hajj in September 2015, a bottleneck formed at an intersection involving several crowds.  In the ensuing turmoil, the Associated Press estimated that nearly 2,411 people had died, with thousands more injured.  The Saudi government's official casualty numbers were 769 dead and 934 injured, which were considered by most governments to be underestimates.  The Iranians lost 464 (the most of any country) of its citizens and led worldwide outrage toward the Saudi government.

Relations between the two countries became increasingly strained after U.S. officials uncovered an Iranian-tied plot to kill Adel al-Jubeir, the Saudi ambassador to the United States, at a restaurant in Washington, D.C.

Saudi Arabia and Iran are currently engaged in two proxy wars, in Syria and Yemen.  The Iranians are backing the Syrian government under Bashar al-Assad, while the Saudis back the Islamic Front, part of the Syrian opposition.  The Islamic Front is not recognized by the internationally recognized Syrian National Coalition.  The Islamic Front is conglomerate of different groups numbering about 60,000 fighters looking to install in Syria a Sunni/Salafist government based on sharia law.

In Yemen, the Saudi government has poured 100,000 troops into the country and has carried out numerous airstrikes to support the internationally recognized government of President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi.  Iran, on the other hand, has been supporting the Houthi militants who fight for the Revolutionary Committee that had overthrown President Hadi.

Although Saudi Arabia is not openly hostile toward the nuclear deal with Iran, the Saudi government has expressed concern with the United States trusting its long-term adversary.  Additionally, relations between the Saudis and the United States have been strained lately.  The Saudis are worried that the United States is not fully committed to bringing order back to Syria and stabilizing Iraq, and they also worry that Iran might not honor the nuclear agreement, which would lead to a nuclear arms race in the most volatile region in the world.

Politically, the recent crisis between Saudi Arabia and Iran will only add to the notion that President Obama is weak and feckless.  The entire world seems in disorder and taking on water, and no one is at the helm.  The United States, under Obama, is not in a position to defuse the situation.  Iran, after getting what it wanted from the nuclear deal, has no reason to listen to our president about a decades old feud with Saudi Arabia.  Saudi Arabia doesn't believe that the United States will have its best interests at heart, given the détente between the U.S. and Iran.

The next president, Republican or Democrat, will have a full plate – make that a buffet – of problems to face, and to face quickly.  The Democrats don't have any solutions, so the Republicans should be talking more about how they can bring order back to the world.

Derek DeLuca


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