Saturday, July 21, 2018

The Real Colluder-in-Chief - Ari Lieberman

by Ari Lieberman

The facts about Obama the establishment media conveniently forgets.

President Donald Trump’s recent performance at Helsinki was not optimal. Questions tossed at Trump regarding Russian meddling in the 2016 elections were not unexpected and could have been handled in a more nuanced fashion. Nevertheless, the Left’s response to the summit can best be described as unhinged.

Democrats and their mainstream media allies, who've accused Trump of treason, collusion and “high crimes and misdemeanors,” have demonstrated an unmatched level of disingenuousness and hypocrisy. In just under two years, Trump has done more to thwart Russian aggression than his predecessor did in eight. He increased the defense budget and improved the military’s state of readiness, provided lethal military aid to the Ukrainian army, blunted Russian influence in Syria, imposed tough sanctions against Russia and transformed hundreds of Russian mercenaries who threatened U.S. interests in Syria into burnt toast. Trump also substantially loosened crushing regulations imposed by Obama against the U.S. energy sector and has adopted an aggressive stance in advancing U.S. energy interests to the detriment of Russia and other oil-producing nations.

If anyone can be accused of betraying America’s interests, it is Barack Obama, who consistently adopted toxic policies and positions which distanced allies and kowtowed to enemies. 

Let us not forget that it was Obama who was picked up on a hot mic telling Putin’s stooge, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, that “after the elections, I have more flexibility,” to which an approving Medvedev responded, “I will transmit this information to Vladimir.”

Let us not forget that it was Obama who was dismissive of Gov. Mitt Romney’s assertion that Russia posed the greatest geopolitical challenge to U.S. interests. In a condescending tone he told Romney, “…the 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back. Because the Cold War has been over for 20 years…”

Let us not forget that it was Obama who slighted our Polish and Czech NATO partners when he decided to scrap a missile defense agreement negotiated by the Bush administration. The unilateral and inexplicable decision to nix the deal appeared to be an attempt to appease Putin while leaving the Poles and the Czechs out in the cold.

Let us not forget that under Obama, Russia gained access to 20 percent of America’s uranium mining capacity under the now infamous Uranium One deal. In addition, Obama initiated a so-called Russia re-set which was aimed at improving relations but which resulted in the one-way transfer of sensitive U.S. technology to the Russians. Needless to say, that technology almost certainly made its way into the Russian military. 

Let us not forget that it was Obama who failed to enforce his own red lines when Bashar Assad used sarin gas against his own people. Obama was then thoroughly outmaneuvered by Putin who patched together a deal which allowed Assad to emerge relatively unscathed. Despite the deal, which called for the removal of WMDs from Syria, Assad continued to use chemical weapons while Obama remained impotent.

Let us not forget that it was Obama who released five Taliban captains for deserter Bowe Bergdahl without giving Congress the requisite legal notice and then tried to peddle the notion through his oleaginous media echo chamber that Bergdahl “served with honor and distinction.” Bergdahl was later charged with desertion and misbehavior before the enemy and was dishonorably discharged.

Let us not forget that it was Obama who gave the Iranians $1.7b in cash, stacked on pallets, in exchange for four hostages the Iranians were holding. The money was almost certainly diverted by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps to fund overseas terrorist operations. Obama also freed several Iranian operatives and dropped arrests warrants on others even though they were deeply involved in procuring weapons systems and critical infrastructure for the Iranian military and its rogue nuclear program. The Obama administration deliberately obfuscated this from Congress and the American people. 

And let us not forget that it was the Obama administration that quashed Project Cassandra, a promising Drug Enforcement Agency operation aimed at infiltrating and thwarting Hezbollah drug smuggling, money laundering and arms trafficking schemes. Analysts believe that Obama was fearful of disrupting the Iran deal and therefore derailed Project Cassandra due to its devastating impact on Iran’s proxy terrorist group. 

Many of Trump’s shrillest critics were responsible for implementing some of these deleterious policies including Obama’s former counterterrorism adviser and CIA director, John “al Quds” Brennan. In 1976, during the height of the Cold War, Brennan voted for Communist Party head Gus Hall. That speaks volumes about what kind of person Brennan is. A bombshell Politico report suggested that Brennan was also partly responsible for shelving Project Cassandra. Under Brennan’s skewed outlook, Hezbollah was an evolving organization that contained “moderate elements.” That’s akin to saying that there were “moderate Nazis” in the Reich.

Those calling for Trump’s head over his performance at Helsinki overlook the fact that actions speak louder than words and judging by these, a demonstrably clearer picture of the true Putin lackey and colluder-in-chief emerges. Democrats and their “resistance” allies in the mainstream media would be better served by reviewing the record before frothing at the mouth and making groundless accusations rooted in fantasy and petty partisanship.  

Ari Lieberman is an attorney and former prosecutor who has authored numerous articles and publications on matters concerning the Middle East and is considered an authority on geo-political and military developments affecting the region.


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Whoopi Goldberg Hearts MS-13 Killers - Daniel John Sobieski

by Daniel John Sobieski

Whoopi pulls back the curtain and lets us see what the left is really like.

Well, at least Whoopi Goldberg didn't hold up a mock severed head representing President Trump, but her verbal equivalent in profanely chastising guest Judge Jeanine Pirro shows how President Trump's greatest accomplishment may be in pulling back the curtain and letting us see what delusional loons have been manipulating public opinion in this country as part of their attempt to fundamentally transform America into something resembling Berkeley, California – a sanctuary country full of defecating homeless people.

Somewhat lost in the virulent exchange was Whoopi's gross distortion of reality, following Saul Alinksy's rule that you don't debate your opponents – you demonize them and make it personal:
'Did you just point at me? I don't have Trump derangement, let me tell you what I have,' Goldberg shot back. 'I am tired of people starting a conversation with, "Mexicans are liars and rapists." ...
Goldberg and Pirro then got into a screaming match, with Pirro declaring: 'You know what's horrible? When people who shouldn't be here end up murdering children of American citizens.'
Pirro was speaking of MS-13 rapists and murderers who sneak in among the great unwashed flooding along our porous southern border, along with minors they want to recruit into their community of butchers. It is hard to see what Goldberg was speaking of, since neither Pirro or Trump ever has started a conversation that way. All they have done is point out that our open borders provide a highway unlikely to be patronized by doctoral candidates or computer engineers.

Has Whoopi Goldberg heard of Nisa Mickens and Kayla Cuevas? They are two teenage girls violently separated from their families by MS-13 thugs who should not have been in this country:
According to Robert Capers, the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, 13 defendants are being charged with seven murders, including the deaths of 15-year-old Nisa Mickens and 16-year-old Kalya Cuevas, whose bodies were found in September 2016[.] ...
CBS New York reports that on September 13, the day before her 16th birthday, Nisa Mickens' brutally beaten body was found on a tree-lined street. The next day, the beaten body of her lifelong friend, 16-year-old Kayla Cuevas, was discovered in the wooded backyard of a nearby home.
"The murders of these teens are particularly disturbing," said Capers, who described the killings as being perpetrated by "MS-13 gang members swinging bats and machetes." He said that Mickens was so badly beaten around her head and face that she was barely recognizable.
Evelyn Rodriguez and Freddy Cuevas, Kayla's parents, were invited to the 2018 State of the Union address Goldberg probably didn't watch. Mickens's parents, Elizabeth Alvarado and Robert Mickens, also attended. Perhaps Whoopi can invite them and the families of other victims of MS-13 atrocities on her show:

In Maryland, MS-13's animals are accused of stabbing a man more than 100 times and then decapitating him, dismembering him, and ripping his heart out of his body. Police believe MS-13 members in Maryland also savagely beat a 15-year-old human trafficking victim. The MS-13 animals used a bat and took turns beating her nearly 30 times in total.
In Houston, Texas, two MS-13 members were charged after kidnapping and sexually assaulting one girl and murdering another. The two MS-13 animals laughed, smiled, and waved for cameras in court as they faced the charges.
New York communities have suffered tremendously from the abhorrent violence of MS-13. Nearly 40 percent of all murders in Suffolk County, New York between January 2016 and June 2017 were tied to MS-13.
MS-13 is a national infestation of butchers, murderers, and rapists. They are indeed animals, as President Trump so accurately described them over the objections of House minority leader Nancy Pelosi, who included these spawn of Satan among "God's children" and said that despite their beheadings, murders, and rapes, they still possess human dignity:
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi responded to President Trump calling violent MS-13 gang members "animals," at her weekly press briefing Thursday morning. Pelosi says Trump's comments as reported are a new low, and make her wonder if the president believes "we are all God's children" or not.
"When the president of the United States says about undocumented immigrants, 'these are not people, these are animals,' you have to wonder, does he not believe in the spark of divinity? In the dignity and worth of every person? 'These are not people, these are animals,' from the president of the United States."
Whoopi Goldberg no doubt shares Pelosi's animus toward Trump's remarks. Judge Pirro, who deserves the respect of her title and legal experience, has seen the human carnage and pain left in the wake of thugs like MS-13. While Pirro was incarcerating rapists of all ethnicities, Whoopi supported the cause of convicted cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal, who was found guilty of the murder of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner.

Mumia Abu-Jamal, despite his obvious and proven guilt, quickly became a poster child for the Democrats and the liberal left as a symbol of the racial bias of white America, the criminal justice system, and the death penalty. 

Rallies were held in his honor, including a 2000 "Afternoon for Mumia" in Madison Square Garden, hosted by the International Action Center, a far-left extremist group founded by the one and only Ramsey Clark. Abu-Jamal garnered the support of the usual suspects, a who's who of Hollywood leftists like Ed Asner; Mike Farrell; Paul Newman; Spike Lee; Alec Baldwin; and yes, Whoopi Goldberg.

And let us not forget the day when both Whoopi and Joy(less) Behar walked off The View after Bill O'Reilly pointed out that a majority of Americans opposing a mosque within shouting distance of the World Trade Center's ruins might just have had something to do with the fact that the terrorists who flew planes into these buildings were Muslims who hated America.

Whoopi should invite the families of MS-13 victims and those parents separated from their children by illegal alien killers such as the parents of Jamiel Shaw, Jr. and Kate Steinle. She can tell them how tired she is of people starting off conversations with their stories.

Daniel John Sobieski is a freelance writer whose pieces have appeared in Investor's Business Daily, Human Events, Reason Magazine, and the Chicago Sun-Times among other publications.


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Bernie and the Bolsheviks - Matthew Vadum

by Matthew Vadum

The Russian collusion the Left doesn't want to talk about.

While the media-driven leftist hysteria about President Trump’s non-existent electoral collusion with Russia continues to build, the Left continues to ignore the longstanding collaboration of its biggest star with the Communists who used to rule Russia.

That star, of course, is 76-year-old Bernie Sanders, the so-called democratic socialist U.S. senator from Vermont whom the Hillary Clinton-controlled Democratic National Committee quite literally robbed of the Democrats’ 2016 presidential nomination.

The Trump-Russia electoral collusion conspiracy theory and the phony Russian “piss-gate” dossier compiled on the orders of the Clinton campaign, have always seemed farfetched. Similarly, the claim that “Russia ‘hacked’ the American election –to the extent that it changed the outcome– never made any sense,” Michael Walsh has observed

This “fever dream” was “cooked up by Sore Loser Hillary and her malignant consigliere, John Podesta … [and] began its demonic life as a way to explain Mrs. [Hillary] Clinton’s astonishment and anger at losing an election all her media buddies told her was in the bag, and for which she felt sure the fix was in.”

Before November 2016 Democrats “never met a communist they didn’t like or a Russian they didn’t want to embrace,” Walsh wrote. 

Not surprisingly, Comrade Sanders’ ties to Russia are much more substantial than any ties President Trump may have.

Bernie’s top 2016 presidential campaign strategist Tad Devine is mentioned 16 times in a list of 500 newly disclosed potential exhibits that Special Counsel Robert Mueller may use in former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort’s upcoming trial for failing to register as a foreign agent and related offenses. According to the emails in evidence, at one point Devine was in regular contact with Russian intelligence agents. Devine was a lobbying business partner of Manafort and previously worked for the pro-Kremlin president of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych. Devine also previously worked for Sanders in the 1990s and as an aide to Al Gore, John Kerry, and Michael Dukakis on their respective presidential campaigns.

Bernie himself has been around Russians and Soviet-era communists a long time.

After he was elected mayor of Burlington, Vermont, in 1979, for a decade he displayed a Soviet flag in his mayoral office, claiming he did so to honor Yaroslavl, Burlington's sister city in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. In addition, he made Puerto Cabezas in Communist Nicaragua another sister city of Burlington.

Bernie Sanders honeymooned in the USSR in 1988. While there he spewed anti-American propaganda, claiming housing and health care there was “significantly better” than in the U.S., and adding “the cost of both services is much, much, higher in the United States.” While in the Soviet Union, Sanders almost certainly worked with KGB agents, knowingly or unknowingly, as all friendly high-profile foreign visitors did at the time.

Sanders worked as an organizer for the United Packinghouse Workers Union (UPWU) which was investigated for its Soviet Communist ties by the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC). 

In 1989 Sanders addressed the national conference of the U.S. Peace Council, a Communist Party USA (CPUSA) front group. The event focused on how to “end the Cold War” and “fund human needs.”

It needs to be pointed out that interacting with the CPUSA was a dangerous thing. During the Cold War, CPUSA members swore an oath "to the Soviet Union, to a 'Soviet America,' and to the 'triumph of Soviet power in the United States," according to bestselling author and Grove City College political science professor Paul Kengor.

As Accuracy in Media has reported, in the 1980s Sanders "collaborated with Soviet and East German 'peace committees'" whose objective was "to stop President Reagan’s deployment of nuclear missiles in Europe,” according to Accuracy In Media (AIM). Indeed, he “openly joined the Soviets’ 'nuclear freeze' campaign to undercut Reagan’s military build-up.” 

This was happening at the height of the Cold War while the despicable Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) was reaching out to Soviet dictator Yuri Andropov’s KGB to undermine the Reagan administration.

Bernie also gave aid and comfort to allies of the Soviet Union. He travelled to Soviet-backed Communist Cuba in the 1980s where he enjoyed a friendly meeting with Havana's mayor.
In 1985 he visited Nicaragua to celebrate the sixth anniversary of the seizure of power of Daniel Ortega and his Soviet-backed Marxist-Leninist Sandinista government. Sanders wrote an open letter to the people of Nicaragua attacking the Reagan administration, which he claimed was a puppet of corporate interests, for its anti-Communist activities. “In the long run, I am certain that you will win, and that your heroic revolution against the Somoza dictatorship will be maintained and strengthened,” he said.

When he was stateside again, Sanders sent a letter to the White House saying Ortega was interested in meeting with President Reagan to try to negotiate an end to that nation's civil war. Sanders even invited Ortega to visit Burlington.

As Walsh has noted, left-wingers’ love affair with Russia began a long time ago.

Barack Obama, who let Vladimir Putin invade the Crimea, was the most pro-Russian president of my lifetime.

In 2009 Obama killed President Bush’s missile defense program for the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland. Then he renegotiated the New START nuclear arms agreement, which curbed the U.S. missile defense arsenal while letting the Russians add to theirs. In March 2012 Obama was caught on an open microphone telling then-Russian President Dmitri Medvedev to wait until after the upcoming election when he would be able to make even more concessions on missile defense. As Russia engaged in what one expert called the largest military buildup since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Obama flipped off Mitt Romney during a presidential debate. After Romney on the campaign trail referred to Russia as “without question, our No. 1 geopolitical foe,” Obama mocked him, saying “the 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back.” 

What has President Trump done about the largely exaggerated Russian menace? A lot more than Obama did.

It is true that President Trump is often accused of going off-message, especially on matters concerning Russia. Although Trump’s rhetoric regarding Russia and Putin is frequently measured and diplomatic, his real-life actions regarding Russia have been tough.

Trump expelled 60 Russian operatives from the U.S. and shut down two consulates. He issued sanctions against several individuals and entities in Russia. He issued four separate statements condemning Russia’s poisoning of British citizens on British soil. He signed off on the sale of lethal aid to Ukraine, approved military strikes against the brutal Assad dictatorship in Syria, and has repeatedly criticized Russia’s energy exports to Eastern Europe.

Yet in today’s topsy-turvy political environment, Donald Trump is smeared as an agent of Putin and Bernie Sanders is absurdly hailed as an American patriot.

Blame Trump Derangement Syndrome.

Photo: Marc Nozell

Matthew Vadum, senior vice president at the investigative think tank Capital Research Center, is an award-winning investigative reporter and author of the book, "Subversion Inc.: How Obama’s ACORN Red Shirts Are Still Terrorizing and Ripping Off American Taxpayers."


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Saudi Arabia and Israel: Know Thine Enemy - Dr. Edy Cohen

by Dr. Edy Cohen

Israelis should exercise caution before they read too much into this relationship.

Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman al Saud, photo via Office of the President of Russia
BESA Center Perspectives Paper No. 899, July 20, 2018

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Ties between Saudi Arabia and Israel have reached new heights in the past two years, culminating in a recent report that a meeting had taken place between Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Israelis should exercise caution, however, before they read too much into this relationship. Riyadh continues to foment hatred of Israel at home. 

Saudi Arabia and Israel do not maintain official relations, but by the time Crown Prince Abdullah published the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative, bilateral ties between the two countries had already been established behind the scenes. In 2015, ties increased and some were even made formal as a result of the joint effort by both countries against the Iranian nuclear program. Saudis visited Israel and there were reports that the late Mossad chief Meir Dagan visited Saudi Arabia to coordinate on the Iran issue. Over the past two years, ties have reportedly reached new highs, with Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman allegedly holding a meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

If there was once talk of a moderate Sunni alliance against Iran, this term has lost all meaning in the last two years. The Middle East is now divided into two camps: one made up of Turkey, Qatar, Iran, and Sudan, and the other made up of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt. The latter camp, which has the support of the US and Israel, imposed the boycott on Qatar  over its growing ties to Iran and Turkey.

There can be no doubt that the growing ties between Riyadh and Jerusalem are a result of the hostility between Iran and Saudi Arabia. Tehran is aggressive in its attacks on Riyadh, including in the cyber arena. In 2012, a cyberattack on Saudi Arabia’s national petroleum and gas company Aramco caused unprecedented damage, partially wiping or in some cases completely destroying some 35,000 of its computers. There have also been reports of Iranian hackers breaking into the bank accounts of Saudi princes to reveal how much money they have at their disposal.

Faced with these threats, Riyadh established the National Cyber Security Authority to fight Iran and the hackers. In 2017, the authority was tasked with an additional goal – inciting the Arab world against Qatar. Abdullah adviser Saud bin Abdullah al-Qahtani is responsible for the unit, which, according to assessments, employs some 4,000 people.

The National Cyber Security Authority’s Twitter account has 400,000 followers. Employees operate online under false identities, and their job is to create hashtags that trend online. Their brief is to moderate and control public opinion and to vilify Qatar and its leaders.

The agency’s Twitter account tweets daily, mostly against Qatar and Iran. It uses anti-Semitic terminology, referring to Qatar as “Qatariel,” a portmanteau of Qatar and Israel, and claiming the Al-Jazeera network “belongs to the Israeli Mossad.”

“The deal of the century” is a Qatari scheme to sell Palestine to the “Zionist entity,” one tweet reads, while another alleges that the “Zionist” Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, the father of Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, is scheming to divide the Arab states to fulfill the dreams of the “Zionist entity” and Iran. In another tweet, the authority alleges Qatar is “trying to destroy the Arab world to serve the enemies of the Muslim world: Israel and Iran.” These statements penetrate deep into the Arab consciousness and increase their existing hatred towards Jews and Israel.

The Saudis are thus playing a double game. Behind the scenes, they send the Israelis the message that Tehran is a common enemy and goad it to fight Iran and Hezbollah. At home, however, they say that the enemy is first and foremost the State of Israel, followed by Iran. Their formula is clear: covert ties with Israel coupled with overt hostility to the Jewish state to satisfy the people, a majority of whom hate Israel.

The Saudi double game is sadly familiar. It is reminiscent of the Egyptian model under Egyptian Presidents Gamal Abdel Nasser and Hosni Mubarak: dozens of anti-Semitic articles were published on a daily basis, but the Israeli audience was not exposed to the phenomenon and the politicians closed their eyes. In the two-and-a-half decades since the onset of the Oslo “peace process,” successive Israeli governments have similarly turned a deaf ear to the vitriolic Palestinian incitement that has indoctrinated the residents of the West Bank and Gaza with implacable hatred for Israel and helped pave the road for the BDS movement. Jerusalem must not accept anti-Israel incitement, and that is also true where Saudi Arabia is concerned. Incitement translates into action, and that action comes at a deadly price.

This is an edited version of an article that appeared in Israel Hayom on July 17, 2018.

BESA Center Perspectives Papers are published through the generosity of the Greg Rosshandler Family

Dr. Edy Cohen is a researcher at the BESA Center and author of the book The Holocaust in the Eyes of Mahmoud Abbas (Hebrew).


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Who is betraying America? - Caroline Glick

by Caroline Glick

The question is why are his opponents accusing him of treason for behaving as one would expect a president to behave? What is going on?

pelosi schumer

Did US President Donald Trump commit treason in Helsinki when he met Monday with Russian President Vladimir Putin? Should he be impeached?

That is what his opponents claim. Former president Barack Obama’s CIA director John Brennan accused Trump of treason outright.

Brennan tweeted, “Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki [with Putin] rises to and exceeds the threshold of ‘high crimes and misdemeanors.’ It was nothing short of treasonous.”

Fellow senior Obama administration officials, including former FBI director James Comey, former defense secretary Ashton Carter, and former deputy attorney general Sally Yates parroted Brennan’s accusation.

Almost the entire US media joined them in condemning Trump for treason.

Democratic leaders have led their own charge. Democratic Congressman Steve Cohen from Tennessee insinuated the US military should overthrow the president, tweeting, “Where are our military folks? The Commander-in-Chief is in the hands of our enemy!”

Senate minority leader Charles Schumer said that Trump is controlled by Russia. And Trump’s Republican opponents led by senators Jeff Flake and John McCain attacked him as well.

Trump allegedly committed treason when he refused to reject Putin’s denial of Russian interference in the US elections in 2016 and was diffident in relation to the US intelligence community’s determination that Russia did interfere in the elections.

Trump walked back his statement from Helsinki at a press appearance at the White House Tuesday. But it is still difficult to understand what all the hullaballoo about the initial statement was about.

AP reporter John Lemire placed Trump in an impossible position. Noting that Putin denied meddling in the 2016 elections and the intelligence community insists that Russia meddled, he asked Trump, “Who do you believe?”

If Trump had said that he believed his intelligence community and gave no credence to Putin’s denial, he would have humiliated Putin and destroyed any prospect of cooperative relations.

Trump tried to strike a balance. He spoke respectfully of both Putin’s denials and the US intelligence community’s accusation. It wasn’t a particularly coherent position. It was a clumsy attempt to preserve the agreements he and Putin reached during their meeting.

And it was blindingly obviously not treason.

In fact, Trump’s response to Lemire, and his overall conduct at the press conference, did not convey weakness at all. Certainly he was far more assertive of US interests than Obama was in his dealings with Russia.

In Obama’s first summit with Putin in July 2009, Obama sat meekly as Putin delivered an hour-long lecture about how US-Russian relations had gone down the drain.

As Daniel Greenfield noted at Frontpage magazine Tuesday, in succeeding years, Obama capitulated to Putin on anti-missile defense systems in Poland and the Czech Republic, on Ukraine, Georgia and Crimea. Obama gave Putin free rein in Syria and supported Russia’s alliance with Iran on its nuclear program and its efforts to save the Assad regime. He permitted Russian entities linked to the Kremlin to purchase a quarter of American uranium. And of course, Obama made no effort to end Russian meddling in the 2016 elections.

TRUMP IN contrast has stiffened US sanctions against Russian entities. He has withdrawn from Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran. He has agreed to sell Patriot missiles to Poland. And he has placed tariffs on Russian exports to the US.

So if Trump is Putin’s agent, what was Obama?

Given the nature of Trump’s record, and the context in which he made his comments about Russian meddling in the 2016 elections, the question isn’t whether he did anything wrong. The question is why are his opponents accusing him of treason for behaving as one would expect a president to behave? What is going on?

The answer to that is clear enough. Brennan signaled it explicitly when he tweeted that Trump’s statements “exceed the threshold of ‘high crimes and misdemeanors.’” The unhinged allegations of treason are supposed to form the basis of impeachment hearings.

The Democrats and their allies in the media use the accusation that Trump is an agent of Russia as an elections strategy. Midterm elections are consistently marked with low voter turnout. So both parties devote most of their energies to rallying their base and motivating their most committed members to vote.

To objective observers, the allegation that Trump betrayed the United States by equivocating in response to a rude question about Russian election interference is ridiculous on its face. But Democratic election strategists have obviously concluded that it is catnip for the Democratic faithful. For them it serves as a dog whistle.

The promise of impeachment for votes is too radical to serve as an official campaign strategy. For the purpose of attracting swing voters and not scaring moderate Democrats away from the party and the polls, Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer say they have no interest in impeaching Trump. Impeachment talk, they insist, is a mere distraction.

But by embracing Brennan’s claim of treason, Pelosi, Hoyer, Schumer and other top Democrats are winking and nodding to the progressive radicals now rising in their party. They are telling the Linda Sarsours and Cynthia Nixons of the party that they will impeach Trump if they win control of the House of Representatives.

The problem with playing domestic politics on the international scene is that doing so has real consequences for international security and for US national interests.

Consider, for instance, Europe’s treatment of Trump.

Europe is economically dependent on trade with the US and strategically dependent on NATO. So why are the Europeans so open about their hatred of Trump and their rejection of his trade policies, his policy towards Iran and his insistence that they pay their fair share for their own defense?

Why did EU Council President Donald Tusk attack Trump with such contempt and condescension in Brussels? Tusk, who chairs the meetings of EU leaders, is effectively the EU president. And the day before last week’s NATO conference he chided Trump for criticizing Europe’s low defense spending.

“America,” he said with a voice dripping with contempt, “appreciate your allies. After all you don’t have that many.”

That of course, was news to the countries of Asia, Africa, Latin America, Europe and the Middle East that depend on America and work diligently to develop and maintain strong ties to Washington.

Leaving aside the ridiculousness of his remarks, where did Tusk get the idea that it is reasonable to speak so scornfully to an American president?

Where did EU’s foreign policy commissioner Federica Mogherini get the idea that it is okay for her to work urgently and openly to undermine legally constituted US sanctions against Iran for its illicit nuclear weapons program?

The answer of course is that they got a green light to adopt openly anti-American policies from the forces in the US that have devoted their energies since Trump’s election nearly two years ago to delegitimizing his victory and his presidency. Those calling Trump a traitor empowered the Europeans to defy the US on every issue.

Trump’s opponents’ unsubstantiated allegation that his campaign colluded with Russia during the 2016 elections has constrained Trump’s ability to perform his duties.

Consider his relations with Putin.

If there is anything to criticize about Trump’s summit with Putin it is that it came too late. It should have happened a year ago. That it happened this week speaks not to Trump’s eagerness to meet Putin but to the urgency of the hour.

After securing control over the Deraa province along Syria’s border with Jordan last week, the Assad regime, supported by Iranian regime forces, Hezbollah forces and Shiite militia forces began its campaign to restore regime control over the Quneitra province along the Syrian border with Israel.

As Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and all government and military officials have stated clearly and consistently for years, Israel cannot accept Iranian presence in Syria. If Iran does not remove its forces from Syria generally and from southern Syria specifically, there will be war imminently between Israel, Iran and its Hezbollah, Shiite militia and Syrian regime allies.

Israel prefers to fight that war sooner rather than later to prevent Iran and its allies from entrenching their positions in Syria and make victory more difficult. So, in the interest of preventing such a war, Trump had no choice but to bite the political bullet and sit down to discuss Syria face to face with Putin to try to come up with a deal that would see Russia push Iran and Hezbollah out of Syria.

From what the two leaders said at their joint press conference it’s hard to know what was agreed to. But Netanyahu’s jubilant response indicates that some deal was reached.

Certainly their statements were strong, unequivocal signals to Iran. When Trump said, “The United States will not allow Iran to benefit from our successful campaign against ISIS,” he signaled strongly that US forces in eastern Syria will support Israel in a war against Iran and its allied forces in Syria just as it fought with the Kurds and its other allies in Syria against ISIS.

When Putin endorsed Israel’s position that the 1974 Syrian-Israeli disengagement agreement must be implemented along the border, he told the Iranians that in any Iranian-Israeli war in Syria, Putin will not side with Iran.

Time will tell if we just averted war. But what we did learn is that Israel’s position in a war with Iran is stronger than it could have been if the two leaders hadn’t met in Helsinki.
And this is exceedingly important.

Trump is being condemned for adopting a conciliatory tone towards Putin while employing a combative tone towards the Europeans and particularly Germany at the NATO summit. This criticism ignores how Trump operates in the international arena.

Trump views his exchanges with foreign leaders as separate engagements. He has goals he wishes to advance with China; with North Korea; with Russia; with Canada; with Mexico; with Europe; with Britain; with US Arab allies. In each separate engagement, Trump employs a combination of carrots and sticks. In each engagement he adopts a distinct manner that he believes advances his goals.

So far, unlike Obama’s foreign policy by this point in his presidency, none of Trump’s exchanges have brought disaster on America or its allies. To the contrary, America and its allies have much greater strategic maneuver room across a wide spectrum of threats and joint adversaries than they had when Obama left office.

Trump’s opponents’ obsession with bringing him down has caused great harm to his presidency and to America’s position worldwide. It is a testament to Trump’s commitment to the US and its allies that he met with Putin this week. And the success of their meeting is something that all who care about global security and preventing a devastating war in the Middle East should be grateful for.

Originally published in The Jerusalem Post. 

Caroline Glick


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The Real Threat to American Democracy - Tom Trinko

by Tom Trinko

The left and the media, which are pretty much one group, are working to undermine the American system because they believe in elections only when their candidate wins.

The real danger to American democracy doesn't come from Russia. The Russians had little impact on the last election, succeeding only in revealing that the DNC was breaking its own rules to suppress Democratic Socialist Bernie Sanders.

Unfortunately, there are people who are working to undermine American democracy. Here's a short list of some of them:

1. Antifa: The Washington Post's new slogan is "Democracy dies in darkness." But most of the left either overtly or tacitly approves of the use of violence by Antifa to silence voices it doesn't like. An electorate in darkness can't vote intelligently. Hence, if Americans don't know the truth, they are at risk of voting against what's best for them. Antifa undermines our system by denying people the truth.

2. Activist Judges: A core belief on which America is based is that political power flows not from elite rulers, but from the people. The people elect representatives, and if those representatives do things the people don't like, the people elect someone new. We see this in the case of Obamacare. The Democrats pushed this first step toward socialized medicine through, and in the next election, the people voted the Democrats out.

When judges make up laws rather than interpret the law, including the Constitution, they subvert our democracy by arrogating to themselves the power that belongs to the people through their representatives. For example, 55,000,000 Americans voted against redefining marriage, yet a few rich white lawyers on the Supreme Court imposed gay "marriage" on the country.

If the democratic process had been followed, the people could have thrown out of office the politicians who voted against the desires of the people, but because the redefinition of marriage was imposed by the courts, it's nearly impossible to throw out the judges. Impeaching a judge is much harder than electing a different senator, for example.

By stealing the people's power, activist judges undermine democracy and reduce the importance of elections to what type of judges a candidate will support, since it is the judges who wield the real power in America today. If judges only interpreted the law rather than making it, no one would care whom Trump nominated to the Supreme Court.

3. The Media: The purpose of a free press is to inform the people of the facts so that the people can decide how to vote. As such, a free media will have different voices, because there are different ways to view the news. 

Today, the major media are all in lockstep, acting as propagandists for the left. If a news story is damaging for the left, the media will avoid covering it. When a Democrat senator was on trial for corruption for weeks, the media barely covered the story, with two of the three networks not mentioning it once on their evening news shows.

Similarly, any voice that attacks Trump, no matter how lacking in credibility, will be repeated over and over. Bill Clinton's actions as a sexual predator were held by the major media to have no impact on his ability to be a good president. But when Trump was shown to be a philanderer who engaged in inappropriate but consensual acts, the same media condemned him as a monster. That the same people are saying contradictory things and hence aren't credible doesn't bother the media in the least.

By trying to distort the people's view of reality through biased reporting, the media are enshrouding us in the very darkness that the Washington Post supposedly objects to and therefore impede our ability to effectively exercise our power.

4. The FBI and DOJ: It's clear that at the top, these organizations went beyond their charter and launched a massive espionage campaign against Trump to benefit Democrats. We know that unverified rumors produced by a foreigner based on Russian sources were used to focus the full power of the Intelligence Community (I.C.) on Trump's campaign. We know that Democratic political appointees in the government identified which Trump campaign personnel were doing what. 

We know that special prosecutor Robert Mueller was appointed in violation of the law. There was no identifiable crime – James Comey admitted under oath that the claims made in his illegal leaks were not true. Trump did not in fact order him to stand down or to exonerate Michael Flynn.
We know that the FBI and DOJ swept under the rug Hillary's gross negligence in handling classified information and that Bill Clinton arranged a secret meeting with Loretta Lynch while the investigation was ongoing. The only reason we know that the meeting occurred was due to the efforts of one brave local investigative reporter.

To this day, the FBI and DOJ are waging a war on the president – nothing less than an attempt to nullify the people's vote in 2016. Clearly, the FBI's and DOJ's malicious attacks on the president indicate that they think power belongs to the ruling elites, not the people.

5. The Intelligence Community: The fact that key players in the I.C. are amazingly biased against Trump is a serious issue. When James Clapper was chief of the I.C., he worked to get the unverified Steele dossier a gloss of credibility so that the media could publish it.

When former CIA chief John Brennan calls for the president to be impeached because Trump spoke to Putin, we have good reason to believe that much of what is coming out of the I.C. can't be trusted.

We have the I.C. declaring that the Russians meddled in the election, but they appear reticent to discuss the fact that the meddling had no real impact on how the vote turned out. They furthermore declare that the Russians hacked the DNC emails even though they haven't bothered to inspect the crime scene, the DNC server that was hacked.

By working hard to make it seem that the U.S. election was fraudulent, the I.C. is undermining the people's trust in our elections and thereby weakening democracy.

6. Those Who Object to the Rule of Law: Whether it be refusing to enforce immigration law or refusing to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act, leftists are constantly demanding that instead of revising laws they don't like through the democratic process, those laws should just be ignored.

Trump enforced our immigration laws, which resulted in children being temporarily separated from their criminal parents – something that happens to U.S. kids every day – resulting in the left demanding that Trump simply ignore the law.

When Trump asked the Democrats to work with him to craft new laws that would remove the problem, the Democrats refused. The Democrats rejected the rule of law and the power of the people and demanded that Trump behave in a fascist and dictatorial way.

Rejecting the constitutional process for creating laws is a rejection of democracy, and it serves to undermine the power of voters.

Other groups are working hard to destroy democracy in America. They too aren't insidious foreign powers, but rather Americans who embrace fascism and totalitarianism.

The left and the media, which are pretty much one group, are working to undermine the American system because they believe in elections only when their candidate wins and because they believe that the elites have not only the right, but the moral obligation to rule over the rest of us.

Tell your friends there is a real threat to our freedom, but it's not from Russia. Rather, the real threat is the left in America, which has embraced fascism.

You can read more of Tom's rants at his blog, Conversations about the obvious, and feel free to follow him on Twitter.

Tom Trinko


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Paul Joseph Watson Video: The Truth About Migrants -


In this new video, Paul Joseph Watson tells The Truth About Migrants and asks: What is really happening to Europe?


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Turkey: American Pastor Brunson in Prison; ISIS Terrorists Roam Free - Uzay Bulut

by Uzay Bulut

Turkey's actions run counter to the US State Department's minimum requirements for membership in NATO.

  • "Incredibly, the indictment now admits that Turkey considers 'Christianization' to be an act of terrorism" – The American Center for Law and Justice
  • Meanwhile, there are ISIS sleeper cell houses in seventy cities across Turkey, according to a 2015 "confidential" note by a Turkish chief of police.
  • Turkey's arbitrary arrests of Brunson, Erdem and many other innocent individuals expose Erdogan's regime as a brutal dictatorship that invades its neighbors, does not tolerate diversity, and that targets Christians and peaceful dissidents who oppose jihad – actions that run counter to the US State Department's minimum requirements for membership in NATO.
A Turkish court has decided to continue holding American Pastor Andrew Brunson in prison, to await a fourth hearing on October 12. Brunson, who has been in jail in Turkey since October 7, 2016, is accused of "membership in an armed terrorist organization." His first court hearing took place on April 16 this year, after 18 months in detention.

The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) condemned the charges and is calling for Brunson's immediate release. In a statement released on July 18, USCIRF Vice Chair Kristina Arriaga excoriated the Turkish government, which she accused of "continu[ing] to make a mockery of justice in its treatment of Pastor Brunson."

Denouncing Brunson's case as a "miscarriage of justice," Arriaga added, "Turkish authorities still have not provided one good reason for depriving Pastor Brunson of his liberties. The Trump Administration and the Congress should continue to apply pressure, including using targeted sanctions against officials connected to this case, until Pastor Brunson is released."

Brunson was charged with terrorism (including "Christianization") and espionage, which carry a sentence of up to 35 years' imprisonment. According to the lengthy indictment, the pastor is linked to the movement of Fethullah Gülen -- an Islamic cleric who has lived in self-exile in the United States for three decades – and whom the Turkish government accuses of plotting the failed coup against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in July 2016.

The American Center for Law and Justice, which has been advocating Brunson's release, began circulating a petition a few months ago that states, in part:
"The 62-page indictment, wholly lacking merit, provides no evidence regarding criminal action by Pastor Andrew, which comes as no surprise... Incredibly, the indictment now admits that Turkey considers 'Christianization' to be an act of terrorism... Now, more than ever, we need to remind Turkey that the eyes of the world are watching this case closely and the world is demanding Pastor Andrew's release."
Erdogan is apparently using Brunson's detention as a bargaining chip to seek the extradition of his ally-turned-foe, Gülen, in exchange for the pastor's freedom.

Brunson, who for more than 20 years served the Izmir Diriliş (Resurrection) Church, a small evangelical Presbyterian congregation, is now demonized by the pro-government Turkish media as a "terrorist supporter" and a "spy" hostile to Turkey.

American Pastor Andrew Brunson, held in a Turkish prison on baseless charges of "terrorism" and "espionage." (Photo: The American Center for Law and Justice)

The practice of targeting and arresting peaceful individuals or dissident citizens for political reasons is nothing new in Erdogan's Turkey; since the failed coup, it has increased. Take the case of Eren Erdem, for example, an author, journalist and former MP of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), and now in jail on doubtful charges of "aiding terrorists." Many say that his real "crime" was to expose how members and supporters of Islamic State (ISIS) have been operating freely in Turkey – a charge that raises the issue of how actual jihadist terrorists are treated by Ankara.

In a parliamentary speech in 2016, Erdem gave examples of ISIS members who were released after being arrested:
"Yunus Durmaz [an ISIS official] said to the police that they [his cell along with another sleeper cell] carried out the Suruc massacre in Antep but he was released.... Yunus Emre Alagoz [Ankara suicide bomber] was arrested in 2011 and then released. All the people in the Adiyaman ISIS cell were arrested and then released. These men have killed around 300 to 400 of our people.
"This man [showing the photo of ISIS official, Halis Bayancuk] is mentioned in three investigations. He is accused of sending militants from Turkey to al Qaeda in Afghanistan. In another investigation he is confirmed to have sent militants from Turkey to the ISIS headquarters in Raqqa in Syria. Weapons, ammunition and a car filled with explosives were found during a police raid on his house. And this person is still free. But journalists, academics and students are put behind bars the moment they make a statement... Is there anyone here who could name this type of a regime?"
In November 2015, Erdem submitted a parliamentary question to Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Berat Albayrak about "foreign press reports" according to which documents were found in the computer of an ISIS official in charge of oil smuggling, indicating that Turkey "transfers 40 million dollars every month to ISIS."

"How much money does Turkey transfer to ISIS in oil smuggling?" Erdem asked. "Has our government ever attempted to stop money transferring to ISIS?"

In August 2016, the minister issued a strong denial. "The allegations that Turkey is buying oil from [sic] is a dirty propaganda war."

In December, 2015, Erdem submitted another parliamentary question to then-Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. The text read, in part:
"The press covered that the South Korean police and intelligence service (NIS) opened investigation two weeks ago against the South Korean firm DaeKwang, which produces pepper spray for Turkey, for supplying explosive materials for ISIS and that its Turkish partner companies, Meydan and Mercan, are also mentioned in the investigation. It is alleged that DaeKwang delivered DK-3M hand grenades to the Mercan and Meydan companies to be transferred to ISIS."
Among the questions Erdem asked was whether Turkey had "opened an investigation into the Mercan and Meydan companies, and if it was true that [they] operated as intermediaries in the transfer of ammunition to ISIS." The government has yet to provide a response.

The government has also not responded to any of the many additional questions Erdem continued to submit – on issues such as the activities of an ISIS-affiliated association in Istanbul; the 2016 ISIS bombing attacks and sleeper cells in Gaziantep; the government's imposing publication bans about terrorist attacks across the country; and allegations concerning the Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters selling Turkish armored vehicles to ISIS.

At the same time, an American pastor who has lived and worked in Turkey for 23 years without a mishap, and a former MP who has dedicated his career to exposing ISIS activities, are behind bars on totally false charges of "terrorism." Meanwhile, there are ISIS sleeper cell houses seventy cities across Turkey, according to a 2015 "confidential" note by a Turkish chief of police.

Turkey became a NATO member in 1952. "NATO enlargement has furthered the U.S. goal of a Europe whole, free, and at peace," according to the U.S. Department of State. However, Turkey's actions appear to make the region a more unstable, un-free and violent place.

Turkey's arbitrary arrests of Brunson, Erdem and many other innocent individuals expose Erdogan's regime as a brutal dictatorship that invades its neighbors, does not tolerate diversity, and targets Christians and peaceful dissidents who oppose jihad – actions that run counter to the US State Department's minimum requirements for membership in NATO.

Uzay Bulut, a journalist from Turkey, is a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Gatestone Institute. She is currently based in Washington D.C.


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