Saturday, October 12, 2019

Will We Ever Prosecute? - Gordon Wysong

by Gordon Wysong

The American people are getting weary of seeing malefactors like Lois Lerner and Hillary Clinton continue to walk free.

Imagine that the local cops know that a gang member, named William, broke into the pawn shop and stole guns, jewelry, and money. William's fingerprints, film image, and DNA add to the hard evidence log. The owner knows it; the prosecutor knows it; William's gang associates know it. But he is not arrested. Nearby shopkeepers and neighborhood mothers are asking why he is walking the street. No one explains it; mum's the word. Could it be there is a grand plan to take out the gang's leaders? No one knows; mum's the word. Shopkeepers and residents are about to give up and start moving away from the area, and no one asks them to stay the course.

Fast-forward to today's still vocal Obama gang. Why no indictments? Mum's the word. Can anyone hold to the faith in American justice? Those who support the rule of law feel like Charlie Brown trying to kick a football. It's coming — oh, wait, it's coming...oh, wait...

Without doubt, a criminal cabal is an extraordinarily complex organization, and understanding who did what, why, when, and how is a challenge to the mental faculties of anyone. But, what happens if the full scope of activities is never clear? Does everyone get off? Does complexity confer immunity?

In engineering, there is no perfect answer to anything, so changes are made incrementally, addressing the problems as they are recognized. Each step brings a clearer view of remaining problems, which are then addressed, each in its turn. The completed project is still flawed, but the solution is practical and productive.

So it should be with a grandiose scheme like the Russia Hoax. The ringleaders don't have to be handled with kid gloves. They don't even have to be handled at all. Just start with the low-hanging fruit, and get as far as possible.

Those old enough to remember My Lai, Vietnam, know that Lt. Calley and Cpt. Medina were not alone in their actions. However, their prosecution forever changed the game of passing the buck on war crimes.

So, too, can rabid prosecution of bit players in the Russian Hoax forever change the landscape in plots involving treason. Those who would participate at the lower levels must know they are subject to prosecution, so they remain circumspect in such a re-enactment of the coup attempt. This would be the Achilles heel of another cabal — those who are intimidated by the prospect of prison. Those who realize they don't have sufficient rank to escape punishment will be loath to participate in such a scheme. Without them, there will be no operational viability to an unlawful coup.

Admittedly, there are always problems in pursuing a criminal case. It must be so under our Constitution, but it cannot be impossible!

Prosecutors don't get all the information, but at a certain point, for each criminal, evidence accumulates that there is a real and provable crime. It may not include every transgression of that person, nor is it the magic revelation, untangling the Gordian knot of the conspirators. It is a simple criminal act. It is what it appears, and it need not be put in the context of the big picture — it is as plain as the nose on your face.

That stage is the stimulus for a prosecutor. It is the time to move. If the DOJ acts, many of the sins can never be prosecuted, because the prosecution of their lesser crimes may foreclose pursuit of other crimes under double jeopardy protection. However, failure to move puts evidence and witnesses at risk of being lost. This point has passed for so many of the coup conspirators that it seems there will be no justice for many of them, like Lois Lerner.


A full recounting of all that is already known would be tedious, and to expound on the criminal conduct yet again seems shrill. It is not necessary to understand the intertwining of all the crimes before simply bringing the charges that are facially obvious. But the deferral of prosecution, for whatever reason it is done, allows many of the cabal to walk free when they shouldn't. In fact, the indication is that they are continuing the very conduct for which they should be prosecuted.

Why has McCabe not been charged with lying to the FBI, lying under oath? Nothing more is needed to start the dominos falling. Who will step forward to exonerate him? No one can, and no one will. That omission — of a vigorously supported defense — will send a message to the others in the coup conspiracy.

Why has Samantha Power not been indicted for violating national security requirements in unmasking or transferring her unmasking authority to others? It doesn't pass the smell test that she is too important to be prosecuted.

Why is Huma Abedin strolling around, free as a bird? She forwarded classified emails to Anthony Weiner's laptop. What else is needed to demonstrate a crime?

Did Strzok do anything? Did Page? Which one lied to Congress? Their contradictory accounts mean at least one is a perjurer. Sure, there is more "there" there, but it isn't necessary to keelhaul them; just send them to jail, and send others a message.

Listing all the cabal members, who are quite obviously criminal, is not easy — in fact, it not doable. It need not be the aim. A public that finds this whole thing partisan or tedious will not be easily impressed if a 2,000-count indictment naming 43 people is suddenly dropped. Bringing along the public is certainly part of sending the message for future conspirators. It probably is better done gradually.

Removing the context and simply prosecuting crimes is the method to educate both today's and tomorrow's citizens.

Selecting single actors, and naming obvious crimes, will have a chance to convince even skeptical partisans that something is wrong. The lack of support from other participants will indeed remove most doubt.

The full scope of what has gone on will never be known, but the lessons for future participants in such a scheme is essential. The next time, the prosecution will be more severe, more certain, and more expedient. Protecting the Constitution is more important than perfect justice. Some miscreants will escape, but they will never sleep well again. The lesson must be taught.

A DOJ that fails to move loses its credibility and its honor. The foundation of the Republic is placed at risk. Without the rule of law, what do we have?

At some point, deferral of prosecution is dereliction or abetting. Has it reached that point?

Gordon Wysong is an engineer and entrepreneur who has served as a county commissioner in Cobb County, Ga.


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Dems Aiding Iran’s Backdoor to EU Trade - Jesse Bogner

by Jesse Bogner

Enabling Iran to skirt U.S. sanctions and infiltrate European markets.

For the average observer, any mention of U.S. Reps. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), and Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) brings to mind those lawmakers’ calls for the impeachment of President Donald Trump.

The role is a familiar one for House Intelligence Committee chair Schiff, the de facto Congressional spokesman for the Mueller Report and now for the inquiry into the Ukraine scandal. Yet these three Democratic legislators are lesser known for their entanglement in another conundrum — enabling Iran to skirt U.S. sanctions and infiltrate European markets.

It begins with seemingly distinct, yet in actuality highly interconnected events which took place on a parallel track from Oct. 1-2. On those dates, the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), a Russia-led trade alliance of five ex-Soviet republics which was formed with the goal of countering the European Union, held its annual conference in Armenia’s capital of Yerevan.

This year’s summit served as a precursor to Iran’s official membership in the EAEU beginning on Oct. 27, a development which will mean that Iranian goods can be exported to the EAEU states (Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Russia) with virtually no tariffs. The particularly concerning element for the West in this equation is Armenia, the only EAEU member possessing a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (DCFTA) with the EU. In essence, Tehran’s pending EAEU membership carries the potential to bring Iranian commerce directly to Europe — with the Iran-Armenia border as the primary conduit.

It should come as no surprise that Armenia, which is rapidly expanding its booming trade with the Iranians and in April reached a customs cooperation deal with the Islamic Republic, stands poised to function as the chief channel for expanding Iran’s business footprint in Europe. The Trump administration is already well familiar with Armenia’s history as a sanctions-buster, as the U.S. sanctioned two Armenian companies in August due to their business ties with Iran. Tehran has also used Armenian banks as a mechanism for circumventing international financial sanctions. Further, at the EAEU conference, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashiyan stated outright his intent to deepen Armenia-Iran ties “in spite of U.S. sanctions.”

The second piece of the puzzle is Pallone’s Oct. 1-2 visit to Nagorno-Karabakh, the Armenian-occupied territory that is affirmed in four U.N. resolutions as part of Azerbaijan. Days before the New Jersey lawmaker’s trip, Pallone, Speier, and Schiff signed a Sept. 27 letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defense Mark Esper calling for “the immediate halt of military aid to Azerbaijan,” citing their concerns over how “the supplies, training, and manpower supported by the dramatic amount of U.S. funding [for Azerbaijan] will be used to further perpetuate aggression against Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh.”

(via Wikipedia)

Yet the U.S. funding which the lawmakers are targeting — $58.6 million for Azerbaijan in fiscal year 2018 and $42.9 million in fiscal year 2019 — falls under the Section 333 Building Partner Capacity program and pertains to maritime security as well as border capabilities, including the curbing of Iranian aggression at the Islamic Republic’s border with Azerbaijan. In fact, the American security assistance in question has no implications for Azerbaijani military capabilities vis-à-vis Nagorno-Karabakh. By seeking to torpedo this funding, all that the three pro-Armenian House Democrats are actually accomplishing is paving a path towards bolstering Iran, the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism.

The timing is unmistakable. During the very same early-October days on which Armenia hosts a gathering that celebrates Iran’s forthcoming economic empowerment through EAEU membership, Pallone visits Armenian-occupied territory to tout the same pro-Iranian policy recommendations expressed in his letter to Pompeo and Esper.

“I don’t think we should be giving any military assistance to Azerbaijan, because every indication is that they would use it — the likelihood is that they would use it against Armenia,” Pallone said in Nagorno-Karabakh.

It’s richly ironic that Pallone, who purports to be a leading voice against foreign influence over American affairs, lands in Nagorno-Karabakh on the Armenian government’s own military helicopter to urge the end of security assistance to a U.S. ally. If that’s not foreign influence, what really is?

The same could be said of Speier and Schiff, the self-anointed crusaders for the truth on alleged Russian interference in the 2016 election who simultaneously exacerbate Russia’s well-documented influence over Armenia. How can they ignore, for instance, that Armenia’s borders and airspace are patrolled by Russian troops and aircraft?

Let’s hope that unlike the pro-Armenian contingent in Congress, the Trump administration operates from a reality-based perspective when assessing America’s strategic interests — starting with a nuanced understanding of how Armenia empowers Iran.

Jesse Bogner is an author and journalist. His memoir and social critique, The Egotist, has been translated into five languages. His work has been featured in The Daily Caller, MSN, and The Huffington Post.

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Was Adam Schiff running a spy operation against the White House? - Monica Showalter

by Monica Showalter

So much for whistleblowers. Starting to look more and more like Adam Schiff ran a spy operation against the White House, based on news of his hirelings.

Seems every day brings a new revelation about Democratic efforts to rig an impeachment of the president. The false claims and astonishing conflicts of interest being thrown out there are piling up fast.

Latest, from the San Francisco Examiner, exposes House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff's choice of staffers, who it turns out had been two disgruntled deep-staters from the White House who had actually worked with the so-called 'whistleblower':
Abigail Grace, who worked at the NSC until 2018, was hired in February, while Sean Misko, an NSC aide until 2017, joined Schiff's committee staff in August, the same month the whistleblower submitted his complaint.
The whistleblower was an NSC official who worked with former Vice President Joe Biden and who has expertise in Ukraine, the Washington Examiner has reported.
A career CIA analyst with Ukraine expertise, the whistleblower aired his concerns about a phone conversation between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to a House Intelligence Committee aide on Schiff’s staff. He had previously informed the CIA’s legal counsel's office.
Schiff initially denied he knew anything about the complaint before it was filed, stating on Sep. 17: “We have not spoken directly with the whistleblower. We would like to."
But it later emerged that a member of his staff had spoken to the whistleblower before his complaint was submitted on Aug. 12. The Washington Post concluded that Schiff "clearly made a statement that was false."
Grace, 36, was hired to help Schiff’s committee investigate the Trump White House. That month, Trump accused Schiff of "stealing people who work at White House." Grace worked at the NSC from 2016 to 2018 in U.S.-China relations and then briefly at the Center for a New American Security think tank, which was founded by two former senior Obama administration officials.
So these people were all buddies beforehand, and this would explain why the so-called whistleblower had been sneaking around with Schiff's staff before he made his whistleblower complaint.

And that only came after someone with influence was able to get the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community (IGIC) to change the rules about whistleblowers needing no firsthand knowledge about the wrongdoing they were supposedly reporting. Once that rules change was put into place, the whistleblower got going.

More and more, this sounds like a preplanned setup. And one Trump operative has a very good summary of what seems to have been really going on as these anything but exculpatory stories mount:

Schiff was essentially running an illegal spy operation against the White House, recruiting his staffers, having them recruit their whistleblowers, grooming them up, changing the rules so they could file their complaints, and then lying that they knew anything about the lunatic efforts to get President Trump impeached. See, they were just standing there, minding their own business when all this stuff happened. And everything that did happen was just ... a coincidence.

Experienced intelligence operatives, and apparently this Trump operative has this sort of background, like to say there are no coincidences.

As facts continue to roll out, it's getting more and more obvious that Schiff's operation was to orchestrate this impeachment scenario all along, going into high gear with the flameout of the Mueller investigation.

Trump's been having a bad time with public opinion in the wake of the Schiff operation orchestrating the media coverage as well. But the facts on the ground suggest it was all an illegal spying operation on the president.

And that's a far more concrete crime than anything Trump is accused of committing. Right now, Schiff has 109 congressional representatives signed on to GOP Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona's call to condemn and censure Schiff for this sick little illegal freelance operation to spy on Trump. 

It's an abuse of his office, for sure, given that Schiff is supposed to be focused on intelligence, not on being one of those creepy secret-police characters in 'The Lives of Others.' It's also an outrageous misuse of taxpayer dollars. In light of this Schiff spy operation, and if Democrats don't want some backatcha next time there's a Dem in office with a Republican House, it really ought to be every last one of them signed up to that Biggs list.

Monica Showalter


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Jews, African Americans and the Democrat Party - Kenneth Levin

by Kenneth Levin

The trap of blind loyalty.

In democracies, minority groups will often embrace one political party and cling to that attachment irrespective of changing political circumstances. This seems especially true of minorities that have experienced discrimination, marginalization, and other forms of abuse.

In America, the groups that have been most closely attached to the Democrat Party for virtually the last century are African Americans and Jews. Even consideration in the abstract of the wisdom of being predictably committed to one party would suggest likely more negative than positive consequences - for example, being taken for granted by that party while given up on and not pursued by the other - and experience has borne that out.

This would seem to be most obvious with regard to the African American experience. Consider, for example, the Democrats’ decades-long lock on control of most of America’s big cities, many with African American majorities, and the record of public education in those cities.

Little weighs as heavily on impoverished children’s potential for extricating themselves from their difficult circumstances and shaping a better future for themselves than the quality of the education they receive in their elementary and secondary schools. But the African American populations in our large urban centers have consistently been very poorly served by their schools and lag significantly behind national averages in command of basic skills.

Those in charge of the relevant cities point to lesser per student spending on their schools due to lesser tax subsidies as compared to the subsidies provided in other jurisdictions. Another argument is that the difficult family circumstances these cities’ impoverished children often face undercut the children’s ability to make full use of the educational opportunities available to them in their public schools. 

Both factors are indeed at play in shaping the school experience of inner city children from low income families. But the history of charter schools over the past almost three decades undercuts claims that these factors render better educational outcomes out of reach. Charter schools are public schools that operate independently under public charter with greater autonomy but with increased performance expectations. They are open to students on the basis simply of application or, if oversubscribed, on the basis of lottery. The general history of such schools has been mixed but overall positive, and, as the Harvard School of Education reported in the summer of 2017, “...low income students, especially black and Hispanic, tend to benefit from charter schools most...” And, in inner cities, such schools are serving children with basically the same social disadvantages as their peers and are doing so with per capita budgets no greater than those of the public schools. 

Not only have major cities failed to improve their schools, but their political leaders - like New York mayor Bill De Blasio, who shouted out at a campaign rally in July that he “hates” charter schools - have often worked to undercut and obstruct charter school alternatives for their constituents. They have done so even as tens of thousands of African American families, desperate for a better future for their children, have sought admission to charter schools. The politicians have taken this course to serve the interests of their backers such as teachers’ unions and others opposed to charter schools. They have chosen political expediency over the welfare of their cities’ children. 

And yet one would be hard-pressed to find African American voters in these cities shifting their support away from the Democrat politicians who control their cities and their schools. Their attachment to the party is so ingrained that their cities’ politicians know they will pay no price for ignoring African American children’s interests in favor of, for example, those of union contributors. 

One can come up with potential logical explanations for how the commitment to the Democrat Party, by both African Americans and American Jews, first evolved. Why it is so steadfastly embraced even when circumstances would suggest the wisdom of a more flexible approach to party preferences, an approach responsive to political changes, is the more germane question. Part of the answer is that groups that have been subjected to biased, abusive, marginalizing treatment are inclined to categorical thinking about what will make their situation better. That is, they tend to think in absolute terms about one set of choices being right and the other wrong. This inclination is driven largely by the wish to believe that making such sharp distinctions and choosing the “right” alternative will assure escape from past abuses. That wish, and the frame of mind it engenders, work against a more nuanced response to political developments. 

The potency of this dynamic among American Jews, and its role in the American Jewish embrace of the Democrat Party, have been elucidated by polls of American Jews regarding anti-Semitism in America. Sociologist Seymour Martin Lipset and co-author Earl Raab, writing in the 1990's, noted that such polls showed the overwhelming majority of American Jews believing anti-Semitism to be more rife among American conservatives than liberals, even though actual surveys of American opinion regarding Jews have not supported this assumption. The false belief, largely reflecting a wish that reality could be so simply defined, figures in American Jews’ allegiance to the Democrats, their routinely voting for Democrat candidates in numbers exceeding seventy percent.

The cost to Jews for this blind allegiance was illustrated in the Democrat leadership’s response when anti-Semitic tropes were spewed by a newly elected Democrat congresswoman, Ilhan Omar. Rather than forthrightly condemn her for her anti-Semitic comments, the Party leadership, eager to appease a Progressive wing more than tolerant of anti-Jewish voices, sponsored a meaningless condemnation of all sorts of bigotry. Its refusal to offer a simple, straightforward rebuke of the congresswoman’s anti-Semitism reflected a bowing to the sensibilities of that Progressive wing over those of their Jewish loyalists and an expectation that the cost of not appeasing the former would be greater than the cost of betraying the latter. And they were no doubt right in their calculations.

A similar calculation was reflected in the Party’s response to Israel’s decision not to allow Omar and another newly elected congresswoman, Rashida Tlaib, to enter the country. House Majority leader Steny Hoyer, who had just returned from leading a delegation of other newly elected Democrats to Israel and assuring that nation of Democrat support, condemned Israel’s action as “outrageous.” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi similarly condemned it. They suggested it was somehow an unprecedented move by a democratic ally. But the United States has repeatedly blocked figures from other democracies from entering the country, including an Israeli member of the Knesset. And, aside from anti-Semitic statements, Omar and Tlaib have endorsed the anti-Semitic BDS (boycott, divest and sanction) movement whose goal, as articulated by its founder and many of its leaders, is Israel’s annihilation. Tlaib has also advocated Israel’s destruction more directly. Is Israel really obliged to admit people who openly declare they want to see the nation destroyed?

Both Hoyer and Pelosi have been strong supporters of Israel and neither can be construed as in any way anti-Jewish. Both are well aware of the history of Israel and the falsehoods in Omar and Tlaib’s glosses on that history. That they would come to the defense of the congresswomen and not support Israel in its right to deny them entry reflected a political calculation. It reflected once again the conviction that it was politically more important to propitiate the anti-Israel circles in the so-called Progressive wing of the Party than to worry about the Jews; that confronting the former would have more negative consequences for the Party than disregarding the latter. And, again, they were no doubt right in this calculation. There has been and will be no counter-push from Jews making the point that the Party cannot automatically assume Jewish allegiance no matter what action it takes against Jewish interests. While such pushback might not change the Party’s ultimate course, it would at least force some deeper reflection, some consideration of possible cost, before Jewish interests were ignored. But no such Jewish response will likely occur.

The two episodes above may seem of limited weight when compared to, say, the issue of schools in the nation’s major cities and the Party’s betrayal of African American children. But the episodes are reflective of a much broader problem.

The American institution most associated with anti-Semitism today is American academia. On the nation’s campuses, dominated by the Left, faculties have widely joined in the bigoted demonization of Israel and its American supporters, have backed the BDS movement and have penalized Jewish students and others who seek to defend Israel. College and university administrators, while typically resisting cooperation in boycotts, have also typically done little to counter campus anti-Israel and anti-Jewish bigotry. The actors in this institutional anti-Semitism are overwhelmingly Democrat supporters, and the Party, once more prioritizing propitiating supporters over challenging anti-Semitism in its midst, has been essentially silent on the bigotry of the campuses. And once more there has been very little American Jewish pushback.

The ethos of the campuses, and the lack of Democrat response, is a threat to American Jews in other ways as well. Basic American principles, principles that have figured prominently in making the Jewish experience in America so much more benign overall than the Jewish experience elsewhere, have in recent years come under attack. That attack has been primarily from the Left, starting again largely on the campuses. What is more fundamental to American Jewish well-being than the First Amendment and freedom of speech, or than the principal embodied in Martin Luther King’s vision of a more fully realized adherence to judging people by the content of their character rather than the color of their skin? Yet both are under incessant attack in the leftist-dominated academy, where a supposed “right” to protection from distressing ideas trumps freedom of speech and where group identity trumps individual identity. (Martin Luther King would likely be harassed and pushed off campuses today for his ideas just as pro-Israel speakers are.) And this illiberal ideology is spreading from our colleges and universities to other bastions of the Left. Yet the Democrat Party has responded virtually not at all to this challenge to basic freedoms and basic principles coming overwhelmingly from its supporters. And Jews have done essentially nothing to call the Party to account.

There is little evidence to suggest that the great majority of either African Americans or Jews is prepared to reassess its longstanding blind loyalty to the Democrat Party. The ongoing refusal to do so in the face of inimical Democrat policies will likely exact an ever-increasing price from both groups.

Kenneth Levin is a psychiatrist and historian and author of The Oslo Syndrome: Delusions of a People under Siege."


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Video: Latvia Won’t Apologize for Holocaust Complicity -


But a new film unveils the horrific and undeniable truth.

Subscribe to the Glazov Gang‘s YouTube Channel and follow us on Twitter: @JamieGlazov.
This new Glazov Gang episode features Eugene Levin, the co-producer of the new film Baltic Truth.

Eugene discusses Latvia Won’t Apologize for Holocaust Complicity, in the context of his new film that unveils the horrific and undeniable truth.

Don’t miss it!

And make sure to watch Eugene discuss his new film and the Collaboration with Nazis in the Baltic States, unveiling the horrific truth about Baltic complicity in the Holocaust.

It is the interview from which the above clip is taken:

Follow us on Twitter: @JamieGlazov.


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Missing the Bigger Picture in Kurdish Syria - Lt. Col. Robert L. Maginnis, US Army Ret.

by Lt. Col. Robert L. Maginnis, US Army Ret.

The uproar concerning President Trump's withdrawal from Syria is based on serious misunderstanding of the Middle East.

President Trump’s decision to withdraw our few troops from the Syria-Turkey border area earned him considerable criticism from allies. Senator Lindsey Graham said the decision is “a catastrophe in the making.” Representative Lin Cheney said it’s “a catastrophic mistake.” Former UN Secretary Nikki Haley said, “We must always have the backs of our allies.” 

President Trump has answered these critics. The Kurds were engaged in a contractual relationship fighting the Islamic State (ISIS). They were well paid and equipped for their fighting, much like any mercenary group. Further, they were given three years to consolidate eastern Syria to feed their long-held desire to form an independent Kurdistan with other Kurds in Turkey, Iraq, and Iran. They failed. 

The Kurds’ problem, and by association that of the U.S., is that regional powers like Turkey and to a lesser extent Iran and Syria have long held the Kurds in disdain. In fact, Turkey considers the Syrian Kurds to be allies of the Kurdistan Workers' Party or (PKK), which are Turkish Kurds and terrorists fighting for independence for the last 35 years. 

Basically, the Kurds hijacked our fight with ISIS to feed their regional civil war to earn independence.

President Trump is aware of that agenda and is also trying to constrain American hawks who want to use our military willy-nilly across the world. Remember that Trump frequently said during his 2016 campaign that he wants to escape from endless wars and bring our fighters home. 

Also, we need to ask ourselves whether the withdrawal of a few American troops really matters in the conflict either against ISIS, and did it really grant the Turkish government the “green light” to attack “terrorist” Kurds? Perhaps. The Syrian civil war which led to the rise of ISIS is over and the bloody dictator in Damascus won, thanks to the Russians and Iranians. We can blame Obama for that outcome, not Trump. And yes, the Turks have permission from Damascus to cross into Syria and they will now consolidate a buffer zone along the Syrian border to control terrorist actions fostered by the independence-minded Kurds and allow for millions of refugees to return home. I bet the U.S. would do the same if we had a similar problem on either of our borders with Mexico or Canada. 

The pregnant question that Trump’s critics don’t answer is: Will ISIS return to fight another day? Not necessarily. Keep in mind that al Qaeda and ISIS are in many more places today than when U.S. forces first pursued them in the mountains of Afghanistan and in the northern plains of Iraq. Also, what remains of ISIS is trapped in a small area in Syria and if they make a ruckus that can be easily handled by Turkish and Russian airstrikes, and they won’t bother with concerns about collateral damage. 

Another point about all the fake news about the Kurdish plight is evidence of a basic misunderstanding about the Middle East, which is locked in a constant cycle of war in part because of the English and French fools that redrew the maps after World War I. 

Trump’s critics can learn about Middle Eastern culture by watching Lawrence of Arabia. Remember the first time that Lawrence goes into the desert his guide stops at some oasis. As the guide drinks from the well, a dark figure on a camel rides fast towards them and then shoots dead Lawrence’s guide. Lawrence is stunned and asks why the Arab killed the guide. The Arab responds, “He is Hazzami. He is nothing. He knew that he could not drink from our well.” 

Yes, much of the region is locked in tribal wars and they don’t want democracy. Further, and in part because of those tribal wars, we do not need to stay there another day, much less a century. Rather, let the regional players handle these problems and leave the larger security challenges like China and Russia to the United States. 

Why must America get involved in every conflict around the world that is, unless you believe as some of the Trump critics do, that we are indeed the world’s policeman and like former American leaders, believe in promoting democracy at the pointy end of the bayonet? 

Finally, I’m a security cooperation expert helping the Pentagon work with land forces across the world. Our allies and foreign partners like us because we are ready to fight for them and more often than not give them training and equipment to settle their own challenges. I dare say the American taxpayer ought to ask whether there ought to be a limit on how much of this fighting really supports our national interests. 

I’m reminded of what English statesman and General Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658) said to his troops: “Put your trust in God, but mind to keep your powder dry.” That’s an apropos view in the Syria account. America has too many fights ongoing now and much bigger ones ahead. For our national interests, we too must “mind to keep” our powder dry and not squander our resources on others’ wars. Let’s put Syria in the rearview mirror.

Lt. Col. Bob Maginnis graduated from the U.S. Military Academy and is an instructor at the Army War College. He oversees a team of national security experts in the Pentagon and has more than 800 published articles on national security and geopolitical issues. His most recent books are Progressive Evil (2019), and Alliance of Evil (2018).

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ISIS's Turkish Homecoming - Con Coughlin

by Con Coughlin

Mr Trump's claim that the war against ISIS is over may prove to be short-lived.

  • It is, therefore, the epitome of hypocrisy for Mr Erdogan to offer to take responsibility for the ISIS fighters being held in Kurdish-run detention camps... If that really were to happen, and the ISIS captives were repatriated to Turkey, it would, for some, be more like a homecoming.
  • The far more worrying prospect is that the captives may be able to escape, and return to the ranks of ISIS's terrorist infrastructure....
  • The ISIS caliphate might no longer exist, but the terrorist organisation itself still continues to operate. Indeed, the latest intelligence assessments are that ISIS is regrouping in countries such as Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen, with the aim of launching a fresh wave of terror attacks against Western targets.
  • Mr Trump's claim that the war against ISIS is over may prove to be short-lived.

If the Kurds cannot guard the ISIS captives, then who will? (Photo by Burak Kara/Getty Images)

One of the more ludicrous suggestions to have been made during Turkey's military offensive against the Syrian Kurds is that, in return for Washington's approval, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan would take responsibility for the estimated 90,000 ISIS fighters and their dependents, currently languishing in Kurdish-controlled detention centres.

It is one of the worst kept secrets in Western intelligence circles that, for long periods during the brutal Syrian conflict, Mr Erdogan's regime supported a number of groups that enjoyed close affiliation with ISIS, as well as other Islamist terror groups such as Al-Qaeda.

It is, therefore, the epitome of hypocrisy for Mr Erdogan to offer to take responsibility for the ISIS fighters being held in Kurdish-run detention camps such as the al-Hol complex in eastern Syria. If that really were to happen, and the ISIS captives were repatriated to Turkey, it would, for some, be more like a homecoming.

There is, fortunately, only a remote likelihood that captured ISIS fighters will be making their way to Turkey anytime soon, for most of the detention camps are located well away from the 30 km buffer zone on Syria's northern border, the main target of the Turkish offensive.

The far more worrying prospect is that the captives may be able to escape, and return to the ranks of ISIS's terrorist infrastructure because the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which are currently responsible for holding them, will no longer have either the manpower or the will to continue running the numerous detention facilities in which the captives are being held.

Prior to Turkey launching its offensive, which bears the unlikely codename "Operation Peace Spring", Mazlum Abdi, the commander of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, announced that some of his forces tasked with securing the ISIS prisoners would need to be redeployed to the border to do battle with the Turkish military.

If the Kurds cannot guard the ISIS captives, then who will?

That so little progress has been made in dealing with the ISIS fighters, many of whom have now been in detention for more than a year, is down to the failure of the West, and Europe in particular, to acknowledge their responsibilities.

The ISIS caliphate might no longer exist, but the terrorist organisation itself still continues to operate. Indeed, the latest intelligence assessments are that ISIS is regrouping in countries such as Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen, with the aim of launching a fresh wave of terror attacks against Western targets.

ISIS's ability to launch such attacks, moreover, will be greatly enhanced if experienced fighters currently being held in Kurdish-run detention camps are able to make good their escape and return to their former terrorist associates.

Of particular concern for Western intelligence officials is the fate of the estimated 2,500 foreign fighters - the majority of them from European countries such as Britain, France and Germany - who have been abandoned by their home countries.

European officials have refused to repatriate them because of the continuing threat they would pose to the security of their citizens. Europe's failure to accept responsibility for the conduct of their own nationals, however, has caused friction with the Trump administration, which has called repeatedly on Europe to act.

Now Mr Trump's own precipitate actions in allowing the Kurds to launch their offensive in northern Syria could have its own disastrous implications for the fate of the ISIS fighters.

The willingness of the Kurds to continue guarding their ISIS captives will inevitably be diminished as a result of the betrayal they believe they have suffered at Washington's hands.

Consequently, serious consideration must now be given to the possibility that some of the ISIS fighters will ultimately be able to make good their escape and rejoin ISIS.

The US has already acted to make sure that some of the more notorious captives, such as the two British jihadis known as the "Beatles" who tortured and murdered Western hostages, have been taken into American custody as a precaution.

Mr Trump has made it clear, though, that the US is not prepared to accept responsibility for all the captives, especially those who originate from Europe.

So that leaves tens of thousands of ISIS fighters stranded in a diplomatic no-man's land, from whence they may well be able to make good their escape.

If this happens, then Mr Trump's claim that the war against ISIS is over may prove to be short-lived.

Con Coughlin is the Telegraph's Defence and Foreign Affairs Editor and a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Gatestone Institute.


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China: Modern Blueprint for Global Power - Lawrence A. Franklin

by Lawrence A. Franklin

[There are many indications] that Beijing intends to become -- at the very least -- East Asia's dominant regional power, thereby supplanting the US as the pre-eminent authority in the Western Pacific Ocean.

  • President Xi Jinping's doctrine includes rejecting as illegitimate any "unequal treaties" forced on China by Euro-Atlantic powers, such as Great Britain's imposition of the McMahon Line, which awarded to the British Crown Colony of India hundreds of thousands of square kilometers of Chinese territory.
  • Chinese military exercises, new weapons systems and the surreptitious militarization of several landfill and disputed islands in the South China Sea, all indicate that Beijing intends to become -- at the very least -- East Asia's dominant regional power, thereby supplanting the US as the pre-eminent authority in the Western Pacific Ocean.
  • According to one American analyst on Chinese military affairs, in 2018 alone, China conducted approximately 100 military exercises with 17 countries.
  • In recent years, the Chinese Navy has been demonstrating better precision targeting by its anti-ship missile system, the presumed target being US aircraft carriers.

It appears that the strategic objective of China to establish regional primacy in the Western Pacific, and possibly in Asia, is militarily, politically and economically achievable. The world, however, is no longer under any illusions about China's acquisitive intent. US President Donald Trump indicated recently that America harbors no illusions about China's unbridled ambitions. Pictured: President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, during Trump's state visit to China, on November 9, 2017 in Beijing. (Photo by Thomas Peter-Pool/Getty Images)

The People's Republic of China, which celebrated its 70th anniversary on October 1, is led by the Chinese Communist Party's General Secretary, President Xi Jinping. In his speeches, Xi often refers to "Qiang Zhong Gwo Meng" ("the Chinese dream"), a code phrase for the era of rejuvenation when China will eventually overtake the United States as the most powerful nation in the world.[1]

Xi claims that China offers the world a different type of rising global leader -- a "guiding power."[2]

Beijing apologists depict China as a non-predatory power, comparing it favorably to Europe's colonial countries in the past and to today's United States.

Similarly, the state-controlled Chinese media depict Chinese statecraft as being based on and reflecting ancient Confucian ethics:
Only when things are investigated is knowledge extended; only when knowledge is extended are thoughts sincere; only when thoughts are sincere are minds rectified; only when minds are rectified are the characters of persons cultivated; only when character is cultivated are our families regulated; only when families are regulated are states well governed; only when states are well governed is there peace in the world.
This portrayal is part of China's traditional self-image as "Jungwo" (the "Middle Kingdom"), a society synonymous with "civilization," as opposed to the "barbarians" beyond its borders. Such was the impetus for China's Great Wall: to keep out uncultured barbarians.

In spite of China's pretense of being a new type of global power, Beijing's attempt to restore its historical role as a world leader involves ancient Chinese political concepts. Xi's call for China's "rejuvenation," for instance, is a signal to his people that under the leadership of the Communist Party, the national humiliations endured during the 19th and 20th centuries will be redressed.

Xi's nationalist sentiment echoes the ideas of Sun Yat-sen, the "founding father" and first president of the Chinese Republic. Sun called for the embrace of "Min-ts'u" ("people's nationalism") to redeem the nation from its status as a "hypo-colony" ruled by many colonial masters,[3] including tiny Portugal, which dominated the South China Sea.[4]

Xi's doctrine includes rejecting as illegitimate any "unequal treaties" forced on China by Euro-Atlantic powers, such as Great Britain's imposition of the McMahon Line, which awarded to the British Crown Colony of India hundreds of thousands of square kilometers of Chinese territory.[5] China never recognized the McMahon Line; it was among the factors ultimately leading to an India-China War in 1962 and periodic skirmishes ever since.

This determination to retrieve Chinese territory might be rooted in Xi's sense of humiliation, still felt among Chinese patriots of all political persuasions, who harbor an enduring resentment over such Euro-Atlantic encroachment.[6]

Xi's posture is also possibly an indirect warning to the West, which may be harboring a desire to assist the people of Hong Kong in their drive for more autonomy from Beijing. This warning underscores the willingness of the Chinese Communist leadership to engage the United States in a limited military conflict, should the US support Hong Kong's or Taiwan's official independence from China or if it positions offensive strategic-weapons systems on those lands.

In his essay, "If You Want Peace Prepare for War" -- using the famous quote from the ancient Roman strategist, Publius Flavius Renatus -- Chinese author Li Mingfu states that if the US attempts to block the Chinese Motherland's unification with Taiwan, China is ready militarily to force unification.[7]

There can be little doubt that Xi's China is deeply committed to the retrieval of Formosa (Taiwan) as an integral part of the Chinese patrimony. Historically, China risked war with Japan after Japanese expeditions to the island province.[8] China also has resisted past attempts by Britain to weaken its hold on Tibet. Moreover, despite fierce resistance to Russia's 19th century invasions in the northwestern province of Xinjiang (Sinkiang), China lost control of the region. That event also might help to explain for China's willingness to invite universal condemnation for its massive human-rights violations against the region's Uighur Muslim population, rather than risk again losing control of the province to Islamist independence movements. [9]

Chinese military exercises, new weapons systems and the surreptitious militarization of several landfill and disputed islands in the South China Sea, all indicate that Beijing intends to become -- at the very least -- East Asia's dominant regional power, thereby supplanting the US as the pre-eminent authority in the Western Pacific Ocean. According to one American analyst on Chinese military affairs, in 2018 alone, China conducted approximately 100 military exercises with 17 countries.[10]

In recent years, the Chinese Navy has been demonstrating better precision targeting by its anti-ship missile system, the presumed targets being US aircraft carriers. The Chinese Air Force now utilizes runways built on some of the disputed islands, and has also landed heavy bombers there.

In addition, the Chinese also have deployed anti-ship missiles and jet fighter planes on disputed islands. These developments suggest that in the event of a crisis or conflict with the West and its Asian allies, the Chinese Communist Party's Military Commission is planning to leapfrog any possible Free World strategy to confine China's naval and air assets to the Chinese mainland.

China's economic model, according to which a socialist regime will for the first time surpass the world's greatest capitalist enterprise, also has historical roots. For millennia, China was the premier power in Asia, if not the world. During that time, China's diplomacy centered on the "Tributary System," whereby regional states recognized the superiority of Chinese Civilization."[11]

Many of China's neighboring states, such as Annam (Northern Vietnam), Korea and even Japan, for a period, rendered an annual tribute to the Chinese imperial court,[12] acknowledging the imperial dynasty's august standing under heaven. The emperor's dynastic administration would in turn provide generous support for compliant neighboring countries. Xi's Belt and Road Initiative bears some -- dubious -- resemblance to the tributary system of dynastic China. This initiative has China providing the income and expertise to build the logistical infrastructure of a recipient nation, which in turn imports Chinese goods and services employing that new infrastructure. Worse, however, China lends countries money; then when the country cannot repay the debt, China helps itself to resources or infrastructure or whatever, in a "debt-trap."

To date, it appears that the strategic objective of China to establish regional primacy in the Western Pacific, and possibly in Asia, is militarily, politically and economically achievable. The world, however, is no longer under any illusions about China's acquisitive intent.

US President Donald J. Trump also indicated recently -- during his September 24 address to the UN General Assembly -- that America harbors no illusions about China's unbridled ambitions.

Trump said, in part:
"In 2001, China was admitted to the World Trade Organization. Our leaders then argued that this decision would compel China to liberalize its economy and strengthen protections to provide things that were unacceptable to us, and for private property and for the rule of law. Two decades later, this theory has been tested and proven completely wrong.
"Not only has China declined to adopt promised reforms, it has embraced an economic model dependent on massive market barriers, heavy state subsidies, currency manipulation, product dumping, forced technology transfers, and the theft of intellectual property and also trade secrets on a grand scale...
"For years, these abuses were tolerated, ignored, or even encouraged. Globalism exerted a religious pull over past leaders, causing them to ignore their own national interests.
"But as far as America is concerned, those days are over. To confront these unfair practices, I placed massive tariffs on more than $500 billion worth of Chinese-made goods. Already, as a result of these tariffs, supply chains are relocating back to America and to other nations, and billions of dollars are being paid to our Treasury.
"The American people are absolutely committed to restoring balance to our relationship with China. Hopefully, we can reach an agreement that would be beneficial for both countries...
"As we endeavor to stabilize our relationship, we're also carefully monitoring the situation in Hong Kong. The world fully expects that the Chinese government will honor its binding treaty, made with the British and registered with the United Nations, in which China commits to protect Hong Kong's freedom, legal system, and democratic ways of life. How China chooses to handle the situation will say a great deal about its role in the world in the future..."
It is imperative for the administration in Washington to continue to exert maximum pressure on Beijing, to prevent China's hegemonic aims being realized.
Dr. Lawrence A. Franklin was the Iran Desk Officer for Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld. He also served on active duty with the U.S. Army and as a Colonel in the Air Force Reserve.

[1] The Hundred Year Marathon: China's Strategy to Replace America As the Global Superpower by Michael Pillsbury. St Martin's Griffon Press: 2016. p. 27.
[2] Ibid. p.29.
[3] San Min Chu I ("The Three Principles of the People") by Sun Yat-sen. Chungking: Ministry of Information of the Republic of China, 1943. pp. 4-5.
[4] The China Dream by Liu Mingfu p. 18.
[5] The Sino-Indian Boundary Question, Peking: Foreign Language Press, 1962. p. 2.
[6] Sun Yat-sen: His Life and Its Meaning, by Lyon Sharman. Stanford University Press: 1934. p. 318.
[7] The China Dream by Liu Mingfu. p. 205-206.
[8] The Rise of Modern China by Immanuel C. Y. Hsu. New York: Oxford University Press. p. 316.
[9] Ibid. p.317.
[10] "US-China Relations Seminar," Dirksen Senate Office Building: 4 September 2019. "Opening Statement by Professor Oriana Mastro" of Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and American Enterprise Institute Security Studies Analyst.
[11] The Rise of Modern China by Immanuel C. Y. Hsu. pp. 130-132.
[12] Ibid.

Lawrence A. Franklin


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France's Homegrown Terrorism - Giulio Meotti

by Giulio Meotti

The problem is that France has, for years, been in a state of denial about the proliferation of radical Islam.

  • French police investigating a woman for suspected ties to ISIS discovered a USB drive that contained personal details, including home addresses, of thousands of French police officials. Who provided that information?
  • "In the street, veiled women and men wearing jellabas are de facto propaganda, an Islamization of the street, just as the uniforms of an occupying army remind the defeated of their submission." – French journalist Eric Zemmour, September 28, 2019.
  • Le Monde, France's most prestigious newspaper, ran an op-ed after the recent attack, charging the country with "Islamophobic McCarthyism." Harpon, the terrorist who murdered his colleagues at police headquarters, would have agreed.
  • The problem is that France has, for years, been in a state of denial about the proliferation of radical Islam.

Police officers block off a street near Paris police headquarters after a terrorist murdered four officers in the building, on October 3, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Marc Piasecki/Getty Images)

This time, the terrorist did not use firearms; his victims were not unarmed children, cartoonists or Jews but policemen.

The site of the October 3 attack was also striking: "The interior of the Paris police headquarters is supposed to be a stronghold; it is the symbol of public order in France and of the anti-jihadist struggle that has been shaken," the French scholar Gilles Kepel told Le Figaro.
"We have entered a... terrorism made in France... with a mixture of Friday preaching by extremist imams, social networks and the instrumentalization of fragile individuals. It is about creating a new panic in society by targeting iconic ... places... The attack is a major turning point in Islamist terrorism."
The assailant, Mickaël Harpon, born in the French Caribbean island of Martinique, was shot and killed after stabbing four people to death with a ceramic kitchen knife during the lunchtime assault at the Paris police headquarters. Harpon, a civilian IT specialist in the intelligence division holding high-level security clearance, had worked for the police for 16 years. First he killed three men in the intelligence division, then he stabbed two female police employees in a stairwell (one died from her wounds) before he finally was shot and killed in the building's courtyard.

Harpon was a longtime convert to Islam and a conscientious attendee of his local mosque, where he attended morning and evening prayers. A radical imam who was nearly expelled from France officiated there.

According to the Wall Street Journal:
"Authorities discovered several USB flash drives at his desk, one containing the personal information of agents and violent Islamist propaganda, authorities said.
"A key question is whether Harpon downloaded that data onto the flash drive for his job... or to send it to his extremist contacts that could use it to target the police."
In 2016, Patrick Calvar, France's director general of domestic intelligence -- pointing to the number of Salafists active in France (15,000 at the time) -- declared that "the confrontation is inevitable". Now one of them struck "the system" from within.

"The attack at the police headquarters can be regarded as the most serious on our soil since November 13, 2015," says Thibault de Montbrial, president of the Center for Internal Security, a French think tank.
"For four years, France has undergone several attacks. Some had a very high human cost, as in Nice in 2016. But that of the Prefecture is of a different nature: it is the first 'blue on blue' attack, where a member of the police force targets his comrades."
At the heart of the extremist agenda, it seems, lies separation. "How has a multitude of Islamist networks managed to create ideological enclaves inside popular neighborhoods?", asks the author Bernard Rougier in Les territoires conquis de l'islamisme ("The conquered Territories of Islamism"). The forthcoming book documents the functioning of Islamist networks in several municipalities, such as Aubervilliers, Argenteuil, Tremblay-en-France, and Mantes-la-Jolie.

According to the French journalist Eric Zemmour:
"In the street, veiled women and men wearing jellabas are de facto propaganda, an Islamization of the street, just as the uniforms of an occupying army remind the defeated of their submission. For the bygone triptych of 'immigration, integration, assimilation' has been substituted 'invasion, colonization, occupation.'"
In 2016, an internal police memorandum revealed that between 2012 and 2015, there were many instances in Paris of police officers engaging in radical behavior or acts that concerned their superiors. In one instance, in 2016, a jihadist stabbed a police commander and his partner at their home in Magnanville, west of Paris; and French police investigating a woman for suspected ties to ISIS discovered a USB drive containing the personal details, including the home addresses, of thousands of French police officials. Who provided that information?

The general impression is that France is now overwhelmed with a proliferation of radicalized inhabitants. The terrorist who opened fire on a Christmas market in Strasbourg in 2018 had been on the terrorism watchlist; so were the terrorists who struck the Trébes supermarket and the man who murdered Jewish children at a school in Toulouse. Although the French authorities knew of them, they were unable to stop them.

There seems to be a terrible security breach. The problem in France, however, lies deeper than that. According to a report by the Pew Center, by 2050, 12% to 18% of France's population will be Muslim. Conversions to Islam are rising. Extremism is becoming such an integral part of the country that, according to the historian Pierre-André Taguieff, for many French citizens, jihadism has become an "attraction". There are now several villages in the French countryside where converts and fundamentalists retreat to practice a "pure" form of Islam.

Paying homage to the victims of the terror attack at Paris police headquarters, President Emmanuel Macron declared that France must fight the "hydra" of Islamist militancy.

The problem is that France has, for years, been in a state of denial about the proliferation of radical Islam. "In some districts," said the Algerian author Boualem Sansal, "France is an aspiring Islamic republic."

Le Monde, France's most prestigious newspaper, ran an op-ed after the recent attack, charging the country with "Islamophobic McCarthyism." Harpon, the terrorist who murdered his colleagues at police headquarters, would have agreed: he shared articles calling France "one of the most Islamophobic country in Europe" -- so Islamophobic, in fact, that even Ahmed Hilali, the radical imam in touch with the Harpon, had received an order of deportation from France for his extremist ideas, but the order was never implemented.

Alexis Brézet, editor of Le Figaro, coined the term "dénislamisme" ("denial of Islamism"):
"How is this possible? How could an Islamist terrorist be so wrapped up in the state apparatus, at the very heart of the police structure that is precisely supposed to fight the Islamist practices, perpetrate the massacre? Dénislamisme endangers the French. It blurs the perception of the threat and disarms the spirits. At a time when mobilization should be maximum, it paralyzes the fight against Islamist infiltration in our democracies. Dénislamisme kills. We will not win the war that radical Islam has declared on us by continuing to walk with our eyes shut".

Giulio Meotti, Cultural Editor for Il Foglio, is an Italian journalist and author.


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