Saturday, May 9, 2020

Biden Sold Out America to China While Working for Hollywood - Daniel Greenfield

by Daniel Greenfield

Biden: "There is no question that you've got the right guy with the right influence."

Outside the JW Marriot in Los Angeles, Rev. Eddie Perez Romero was being handcuffed by the LAPD.

Rev. Romero was holding up a “Free China” sign outside a Chinese Ministry of Commerce conference. Inside was the LAPD's boss Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, along with Governor Jerry Brown, and Vice President Joe Biden, who were palling around with China’s future dictator, Xi Jinping.

“My hope is that Vice President Joseph Biden, Governor Jerry Brown and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa will rise above any pandering spirit, but as true statesmen, intentionally blur the artificial line between the economy and human rights,” Rev. Romero said.

Biden though had a very different agenda on his mind.

It was 2012 and Joe was thinking about his future. A year earlier his best friend, Senator Chris Dodd, had left the Senate to run the MPAA. The MPAA was Hollywood's trade association and the movie industry, reading its own writing on the wall, wanted into China, and was willing to sell its soul to make a deal.

Biden wanted Hollywood cash for a future presidential campaign.

Dodd had been one of the sleaziest figures in the Senate, even by the low standards of the era, eager to do favors for any well-heeled industry from finance to entertainment. His friendship with Biden gave him a direct pipeline into the Obama administration. And Dodd gave Biden a pipeline into Hollywood.

“Joe was our champion inside the White House,” Dodd later said.

Two years later, in 2014, Biden began an address to the MPAA by joking, "there have been the rumors all those years when Chris and I served in the Senate that although I was chairman, he controlled me."

"We've just given new life to those rumors," he continued, describing how he had left a meeting with Obama and Chancellor Merkel, telling Obama that he had to address the MPAA.

"There is no question that you've got the right guy with the right influence," Biden concluded.

And that’s exactly what Biden had been proving in Los Angeles as he surrounded Xi with Hollywood tycoons, especially Jeffrey Katzenberg, a major donor to his 2020 campaign, and cut a deal with the Chinese thug to increase the quota of Hollywood movies allowed in by the Chinese Communist regime.

"Some of you were there. Literally when by end of that lunch we had a handshake," Biden boasted to the MPAA. “The next year the number of blockbuster foreign films showing in China has increased by over half and our share of the box office revenue has doubled -- or your share of the box office revenue has doubled.”

“Keep me in mind for Chris' assistant later,” he joked.

Biden understandably lost track of the difference between “your share” and “our share” because Hollywood has been a reliable fundraising machine for Biden. What was good for Hollywood was also good for Biden. Katzenberg got Oriental Dream Works, a $330-million joint venture with the PRC, and eventually hosted Biden's first Southern California fundraiser which brought in $700K.

2012 was a big year for the adulterous nuptials of Hollywood and the Chinese Communist Party.

A few months after the meeting between Biden and Xi, China’s Wanda Group bought AMC Theaters for $2.6 billion. The Wanda Group, run by a billionaire Communist oligarch with close ties to regime officials, is working on a Communist theme park, and its investors allegedly include Xi’s sister. Beyond just owning the theaters, Wanda owns the Legendary Group which has a hand in a long list of movies from Spike Lee's BlacKKKlansman, to Pokemon, along with the King Kong and Jurassic Park sequels.

The only reason Hollywood movies can play in China is because the Communist leadership directly profits from them and controls what goes into them, either directly through ownership, or by forcing the industry to submit scripts for the approval of its Communist censors. HUAC would be superfluous today. The big studios who make up the MPAA are all working for the Communists. And they’re proud of it.

That’s why a Tibetan character vanished from Doctor Strange (Disney has been the worst offender when it comes to appeasing the Communist leadership), why Taiwanese and Japanese flag patches vanished from Tom Cruise’s jacket in the Top Gun sequel (the movie was backed by Tencent, the PRC social media monopoly whose social media controls allow the regime to censor dissent and which has its paws on Wonder Woman, Venom and many other blockbusters), and why World War Z erased references to China covering up the origin of the zombie outbreak. That act of censorship now appears prophetic.

Biden’s brokering of the relationship between Hollywood and the Communist elite was more than financial, it was also cultural. Hollywood traded access for control, not just over what Chinese people saw, but what Americans were likely to see. Biden’s donors got richer and American movies were reduced to a bunch of CG cartoons with limited dialogue that had to win Communist approval.

And it wasn’t just Hollywood.

In 2013, a year after the Xi event at the Marriot, Joe and Hunter Biden flew on Air Force Two to China. BHR Partners was founded that year and included Hunter Biden as a board member. Underneath all the rhetoric about the ennobling virtues of globalism was some very parochial and familial profiteering.

The big Chinese partner in the BHR arrangement was Harvest Fund Management which, coincidentally enough, in 2012 was targeting Hollywood with an $800 million investment fund. That same year, you could find Bruno Wu, who had been working with Harvest, and Chris Dodd, along with Harvey Weinstein, playing roles at the Asian Film Summit in Toronto. And the money didn’t just go one way.

The Delaware Board of Trade was incorporated in 2013. Despite its name, the DBOT was not a government agency, but a penny stock startup which received a $3 million loan from New Castle County.

New Castle County had approved the issue of $15 million in revenue bonds to fund the DBOT "stock exchange" by touting the "globally recognized leaders in the financial services industry" running it. DBOT’s founders included people with experience in stock exchanges and financial services, and Dennis Toner, who was described as a "top aide to Vice President Joe Biden."

Toner, Biden's deputy chief of staff, is in the news for denying that Tara Reade ever told him anything.

Reade’s decision to tell Toner and Ted Kaufman was a pretty poor one. Both are longtime Biden men and considered as close to the boss as family. And they’ve reaped the benefits of that closeness.

Emperor Caligula appointed his horse to the Roman Senate. After Obama won, Ted Kaufman was temporarily appointed to the Senate. If there was anything odd about appointing a Biden advisor to sit in the Senate, it became odder when Senator Kaufman delivered the opening statement in favor of Toner’s appointment as Post Office Governor, by vouching for his “loyalty” working for Joe Biden.

Reade might as well have taken her complaint to Biden, as to Toner and Kaufman.

The current New Castle County exec has since called DBOT’s founders criminals and threatened to sue after the company was disposed of as a "distressed asset" in exchange for shares of Ideanomics. Ideanomics is a Chinese crypto company trading as a penny stock and the software that served as collateral for the loan has been described as worthless. The chairman of Ideanomics is Wu.

The manager of DBOT-I LLC was listed as John Hynansky. The car dealer is a Biden pal with extensive Ukrainian ties who had lent Biden’s shady brother half a million dollars and had received $20 million in government loans to start a Porsche luxury car dealership in the Ukraine.

Biden’s vaunted foreign policy expertise has consisted of brokering deals between family members, donors, and foreign interests. These deals haven’t been good for America, but they’ve worked out very well for members of his crooked family, as well as assorted donors, camp followers, and local boys.

But his biggest deal was helping broker the Chinese takeover of the American entertainment industry.

Xi’s visit to Los Angeles hit on all the right cultural notes. He schmoozed Hollywood bigwigs and their errand boys, like Dodd and Biden, he watched a Lakers game, and cheered Obama’s 100,000 Strong China initiative to have a hundred thousand American students study in the Communist dictatorship.

"I can say with confidence my visit has been a full success," Xi declared.

In China, culture serves the agenda of the Communist government. Unlike the Russians, who struggled vainly to stem the impact of American culture, their Chinese counterparts decided to control it at the source. Biden was a key figure in negotiating the terms on which the PRC would control Hollywood.

In 1962, the Manchurian Candidate depicted an effort by Communists in China, Russia, and elsewhere to kidnap and brainwash American soldiers. The modern remake replaced the Communists with a corporation and the Chinese doctor with a South African geneticist. China could not be offended.

While Biden, Katzenberg, and Xi were partying at the Marriot, human rights protesters were calling for freedom, and being arrested by the henchmen of a one-party Democrat city and state for their trouble.

Even while Biden was falsely claiming that the Hollywood sellout would improve human rights in China, the rise of China was already violating human rights in America. Now, as Chinese drones fly over American cities, police stalk empty streets, social media monopolies monitor every single phone, and Democrat officials dismiss the Bill of Rights while locking up millions of people, our rights are gone.

And Joe Biden is the Manchurian Candidate who long ago sold out the country he now seeks to rule.

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is an investigative journalist and writer focusing on the radical Left and Islamic terrorism.


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House intel transcripts show top Obama officials had no 'empirical evidence' of Trump-Russia collusion - Brooke Singman

by Brooke Singman

“The transcripts show a total lack of evidence, despite Schiff personally going out saying he had more than circumstantial evidence that there was collusion,”

Newly released transcripts of interviews from the House Intelligence Committee’s long-running Russia investigation reveal top Obama officials acknowledged that they knew of no “empirical evidence” of a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia in the 2016 election, despite their concerns and suspicions.

Fox News first reported Wednesday night that the transcripts would show this. The officials' responses align with the results of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation—which found no evidence of criminal coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia in 2016, while not reaching a determination on obstruction of justice.


The transcripts, which were released by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., revealed top Obama officials were questioned over whether they had or had seen evidence of such collusion, coordination or conspiracy -- the issue that drove the FBI's initial case and later the special counsel probe.

“I never saw any direct empirical evidence that the Trump campaign or someone in it was plotting/conspiring with the Russians to meddle with the election,” former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper testified in 2017. “That’s not to say that there weren’t concerns about the evidence we were seeing, anecdotal evidence. ... But I do not recall any instance where I had direct evidence.”

Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power, according to the transcript of her interview, was asked about the same issue. Power replied: “I am not in possession of anything—I am not in possession and didn’t read or absorb information that came from out of the intelligence community.”

When asked again, she said:  “I am not.”

Obama National Security Adviser Susan Rice was asked the same question.

“To the best of my recollection, there wasn’t anything smoking, but there were some things that gave me pause,” she said, according to her transcribed interview, in response to whether she had any evidence of conspiracy. “I don’t recall intelligence that I would consider evidence to that effect that I saw…conspiracy prior to my departure.”

When asked whether she had any evidence of “coordination,” Rice replied: “I don’t recall any intelligence or evidence to that effect.”

When asked about collusion, Rice replied: “Same answer.”

Former Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes was asked the same question during his House Intelligence interview.

“I wouldn’t have received any information on any criminal or counterintelligence investigations into what the Trump campaign was doing, so I would not have seen that information,” Rhodes said.

When pressed again, he said: “I saw indications of potential coordination, but I did not see, you know, the specific evidence of the actions of the Trump campaign.”


Former Attorney General Loretta Lynch also said that she did "not recall that being briefed up to me."

"I can't say that it existed or not," Lynch said, referring to evidence of collusion, conspiracy or coordination.

Meanwhile, former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe was not asked that specific question but rather questions about the accuracy and legitimacy of the unverified anti-Trump dossier compiled by ex-British intelligence officer Christopher Steele.

McCabe was asked during his interview in 2017 what was the most “damning or important piece of evidence in the dossier that” he “now knows is true.”

McCabe replied: “We have not been able to prove the accuracy of all the information.”
“You don’t know if it’s true or not?” a House investigator asked, to which McCabe replied: “That’s correct.”

Schiff released the files -- approved in late 2018 for release by the committee -- after facing pressure earlier this week from Republicans to do so. Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell then notified Schiff that the redaction and declassification process was complete, and that the records were ready to be made public.

“At the bipartisan request of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, the Intelligence Community reviewed all transcripts for classification and made appropriate redactions. HPSCI voted unanimously in 2018 to publicly release these transcripts, and it is long past time that these are released,” Grenell said in a statement Thursday.

Schiff, though, faulted the White House for the delay, accusing them of dragging their feet on the classification review.

And even as officials in those interviews said they didn’t have hard evidence of collusion, conspiracy or coordination, Schiff pointed to a variety of examples he described as "ample evidence of the corrupt interactions" between Trump associates and Russia.

For instance, he cited how Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., infamously accepted an offer of supposed Russian dirt on Hillary Clinton.

He also pointed to then-candidate Trump saying in 2016, “Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing." This referred to then-Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s emails.

Schiff said in a statement: “The transcripts released today richly detail evidence of the Trump campaign’s efforts to invite, make use of, and cover up Russia’s help in the 2016 presidential election. Special Counsel Robert Mueller identified in his report similar, and even more extensive, evidence of improper links between individuals associated with the Trump campaign and the Russian government. A bipartisan Senate investigation also found that Russia sought to help the candidacy of Donald Trump in 2016.”

He also cited how former national security adviser Michael Flynn tried to "undermine U.S. sanctions on Russia" in his transition-period conversations with Russia's ambassador. Flynn later pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about those talks; however, the Justice Department on Thursday moved to drop the case entirely, saying the FBI interview had no legitimate basis.

Meanwhile, Schiff accused Republicans of using the committee interviews to simply "press President Trump’s false narrative of ‘no collusion, no obstruction,’" despite intelligence findings that Russia sought to meddle in the election to boost Trump.

Yet Republicans told Fox News the transcripts still show the collusion claims could not be supported.

“The transcripts show a total lack of evidence, despite Schiff personally going out saying he had more than circumstantial evidence that there was collusion,” one source involved in House Russia investigations told Fox News.

Mueller, similarly, at the conclusion of his nearly two-year-long investigation, said he and his team found no evidence of criminal conspiracy or coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia, but did not reach a conclusion on obstruction of justice, which Attorney General Bill Barr ultimately decided not to pursue.

Brooke Singman is a Politics Reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter at @BrookeSingman.


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The Pulitzer Prize and the Corruption of History and Journalism - Bruce Thornton

by Bruce Thornton

History has been subordinated to the “passions and interests” of the present.

The Pulitzer folks have awarded their prize to the New York Times for the lead essay in its “1619 Project,” a bit of lefty agitprop so egregious that even throwback liberal American historians have ripped it to shreds. This offense comes two years after a joint Pulitzer award to the Times and the Washington Post for its brazenly partisan coverage of the Russian collusion lie cooked up by rogue clerks in the FBI and DOJ. Indeed, this bias is a long tradition for the Pulitzer. The Times’s man in Moscow, Walter Duranty, was rewarded with the prize for helping Stalin obscure his mass murders, which suited the leftist inclinations of the Times and the Pulitzer board.

Yet this latest Pulitzer awarded for corrupting two of our esteemed and prestigious institutions is nothing new. What we have been experiencing since the Sixties is the tearing away of the last few shreds of the emperor’s stained and threadbare clothes. As a result, ideological activism has driven truth and critical thinking from both these professions.

First, we should remember that the Pulitzer Prize, like the Oscars, the Emmys, and with a few exceptions the Nobel Peace Prize, is a trade-guild marketing tool, not a merit-based objective reward for true excellence and achievement. Political and ideological preferences are branded by such awards and made into megaphones for publicizing biases for those preferences. It’s no coincidence that the Nobel Peace Prize has historically favored evangelical globalists and one-world anti-nationalists, or enemies of the West like the leftist ventriloquist’s dummy Rigoberta Menchu, and the murderous thug Yasser Arafat. Watching the Oscars and listening to the winners’ speeches provide a seminar in left-wing platitudes and semi-literate bromides. Or look at this year’s Pulitzer Board members and you will find reporters, media executives, foundation functionaries, and university faculty, all of whom are notoriously progressive.

In pointing this out, however, we shouldn’t imply that once there was a golden age of journalism marked by high standards of objectivity and bias-free reporting. Newspapers going back to the Founding era were all characterized by a preference for one political faction over others. Forgotten Founder Fisher Ames, a die-hard antidemocrat, complained in 1805 about the media’s politicization. Scorning the press for “supplying an endless stimulus to their [readers’] imagination and passions,” Ames wrote, “Public affairs are transacted now on a stage where all the interests and passions grow out of fiction.”

Distinctions between the recording of facts and events also were not always separated from partisan opinion. Here’s an example from the San Francisco Herald of 1853, in a seeming news story about a ranchero whose encounter with the famous bandit Joaquín Murieta was told to an anonymous “correspondent.” The story reprises many dubious details about the bandit, including his claim that his crimes were in response to the hanging of his brother and rape of his wife by dastardly gringos. But the real point of the story is political: The Herald appealed to Californians who opposed discriminatory policies like the Foreign Miners Tax, which served the interests of the mining companies, but not those of the merchants who sold miners supplies and equipment, and didn’t want their pool of customers diminished.

Despite our pretenses that journalism has evolved from those bad habits, we see the same flaws today––reliance on anonymous sources, information taken at second- or third-hand, outright fabrications, and naked political bias––in the coverage of the ginned-up “scandals” like Russian collusion, Trump supposedly strong-arming Ukraine, and the predicates for the House’s articles of impeachment.

Back in the day, most people knew newspapers were politically biased. The origins of journalism’s claims to nonpartisan objectivity started around 1900 as another progressive bad idea about making human affairs and political behavior into a “science.” In his 1919 book Liberty and the News, progressive Walter Lippmann sought to make journalism a “profession” conducted according to the canons of science, and for society to provide “genuine training schools for the men upon whose sagacity [the citizens] were dependent.” Such schools would have “to wait upon the development of psychology and political science,” but once armed with such knowledge, their students could become objective journalists, above all the political passions of less “sagacious” folk. After World War II, this vision became realized in university “J schools,” whose degrees became a necessary credential for practicing journalism. Of course, that also meant that the increasing leftward shift of the universities over the years would transfer to journalists.

For a while, journalists paid the “homage vice pays to virtue”: hypocrisy. But by 2016 we were hearing a bit more honesty. The New York Times’ media reporter Jim Rutenberg had a front-page column justifying the media’s bias against Trump by a clever use of rhetorical and begged questions: “If you’re a working journalist and you believe that Donald J. Trump is a demagogue playing to the nation’s worst racist and nationalistic tendencies, that he cozies up to anti-American dictators and that he would be dangerous with control of the United States nuclear codes, how the heck are you supposed to cover him?” Over the subsequent four years, of course, the rhetorical questions have become declarative sentences.

The consequence of these developments is that the pretenses of professional integrity have been dropped. Starting in the Sixties and culminating in the two terms of Barack Obama, progressive corporate media have discarded professional standards, insincere as they may have been, that once checked the sorts of shameless and blatant activism we see today. Fact-based journalism is still being done, but has become less influential given the progressives’ dominance of the legacy media.

History as well has been notoriously subordinated to the “passions and interests” of the present. Even at its best, the history of human actions and events necessarily involves judgements about what’s important, representative, and meaningful, and requires a humble respect for the irreducibly complex motives and aims that keep history from ever being “scientific” and purely objective. But there are also facts that can be known, better founded arguments that can be made, and interpretations that are based on those arguments and facts not as we want them to be, but as they were understood in their own times and standards rather than our own.

But the dangers of letting ideological biases warp history accelerated in the Sixties and its rise of imperialist activism. Now most of our history resembles Jane Austen’s comic History of England, in which she declares her aim “to vent my spleen against  & shew my hatred to all those peoples whose parties or principles do not suit with mine, & not to give information.” Compromised by the ideological biases of identity politics, history has become a form of melodrama, driven by the Leninist principle of “who, whom”: Who is the oppressor, whom does he oppress. But the answer is known in advance: The  “who” is the white, male, heterosexual, Christian, capitalist, demon of history, the Dark Lord, usually America, that prevents the utopia of blissful equality and perfect justice denied to “people of color.” Worse yet for good history, it bespeaks a temporal arrogance about our own superior knowledge and morality, as we haul past eras before the judgment of one that is the most historically ignorant in American history. We call that the historiographical sin of “presentism,” the product of a temporal centrism that patronizes and condescends to the past.

This naïve, simplistic and bigoted view of history has permeated our politics, policies, social mores, school curricula, and culture both high and low. Much of it, like the “1619 Project,” is remarkably bad, both in content and in style. It explains the continuing popularity of Howard Zinn’s People’s History of the United States, a tissue of Old Left and Cultural Marxist clichés; the yearly tendentious condemnations of Christopher Columbus’s voyages to the New World; the preposterous noble-savage idealizations of American Indians as gentle ecologists and proto-feminists; the knee-jerk condemnations of the West’s alleged evils while ignoring the fact that all such evils are universal to mankind, but the ideas created by the West––unalienable human rights, sex equality, eradication of slavery, liberal democracy––are unique to the West.

As a result, the affection for our country and its past is compromised, the “mystic chords of memory” frayed, leaving it to fewer and fewer citizens to shoulder the burden of fighting and dying for it. In the face of the expansionary ambitions of communist China that have been laid bare by the virus crisis, such disdain for the country that has made us rich and free is dangerous.

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Frontpage's Series on NY Times’ 1619 Project:
Daniel Greenfield: Project 2019 - How the New York Times Profits from Slavery Today. Bruce Thornton: NY Times’ 1619 Project Puts Slavery at the Center of America’s Founding. Jason D. Hill: Why New World Slavery Was Inevitable.
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Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

Bruce Thornton is a Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center.


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Taking the Coup Clan to the Cleaners - Lloyd Billingsley

by Lloyd Billingsley

Trump's Director of National Intelligence nominee will “speak the truth to power.”

If confirmed as Director of National Intelligence, Texas Republican John Ratcliffe said this week, he would not let any “outside influence,” impact or alter intelligence. His loyalty would be “to the Constitution and rule of law” and Ratcliffe would “speak the truth to power.” As Ratcliffe knows, the intelligence community has been protecting the powerful from the truth, but change is in the wind.

On May 4, acting DNI Richard Grenell informed Congress that some 53 transcripts of interviews were declassified, redacted and ready for release. These include interviews with former DNI James Clapper, Loretta Lynch, Samantha Power, Andrew McCabe, Susan Rice, Ben Rhodes, and John Podesta. As Fox News reports, none of the 53 witnesses could provide evidence of collusion between Trump and Russia.

Intelligence Committee boss Adam Schiff repeatedly claimed he had “direct evidence” of collusion and sought to block release of the transcripts. Those will be a welcome addition to the FBI notes revealing the set-up against President Trump’s National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. As Andrew McCarthy explains, the real quarry was Trump, target of the “Crossfire Hurricane” operation to remove him from office. The FBI’s Peter Strzok was a key player but others in them intelligence community have escaped the scrutiny they deserve.

James Clapper, now holding forth on CNN, was famous for proclaiming the Muslim Brotherhood a secular organization. NBC mouthpiece John Brennan is on record that in 1976 he voted for the Stalinist Gus Hall, presidential candidate of the Soviet-backed Communist Party USA. No government agency should have let Brennan in the door, but the CIA duly brought him aboard in 1980.

In 1981 Brennan joined the CIA’s Directorate of Intelligence and he rose through the ranks before POTUS 44 tapped him for Director in 2013. In 2014, Brennan’s CIA hacked the computers of the Senate Intelligence Committee, an operation not exactly in the CIA’s job description. Brennan stepped down in January 2017 but remained a strident critic of president Trump.

“When the full extent of your venality, moral turpitude, and political corruption becomes known,” Brennan tweeted after the firing of Andrew McCabe, “you will take your rightful place as a disgraced demagogue in the dustbin of history.” Brennan was confident the coup would succeed and, in the Washington Post, the former CIA boss accused Trump of “lying routinely to the American people without compunction, intentionally fueling divisions in our country and actively working to degrade the imperfect but critical institutions that serve us.”

After the president revoked Brennan’s security clearance, the NBC pundit charged that Trump was trying to scare his critics “into silence.” With Brennan at the bullhorn, the coup attempt actually gained momentum. Chief inquisitor Robert Mueller found no collusion, but the deep state players quickly deployed the Ukraine hoax.

After that venture proved a bust, President Trump took action by firing Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson, who ratted to Schiff about Trump’s call with Volodymyr Zelensky.  That led to the impeachment inquiry, which also failed to remove Trump from office. The coup attempt needs a thorough investigation, and the fallout could extend far into the future. Consider the experience in Canada.

In 1952, at the nadir of Soviet anti-Semitism, Pierre Trudeau participated in a Stalinist propaganda event in the USSR. As Prime Minister from 1968 to 1979, and again from 1980 to 1984, Trudeau praised Communist dictators such as Fidel Castro, alienated the United States and other allies, and as even David Frum noted, left Canada deeply divided and its economy in shambles.

Canada’s RCMP Security Service had compiled a dossier on Trudeau and transferred the files to the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), founded in 1984. In 1989, the CSIS destroyed the Trudeau files, slated to become part of the national archives in 2020, a full 20 years after Pierre Trudeau’s death. That spares son Justin from dealing with the truth about his pro-Communist father.

From 2008 to 2016, the President of the United States was the former Barry Soetoro, whose official biographer David Garrow calls him a “composite character” in the “historical fiction” of Dreams from My Father. The author’s beloved “Frank,” is the Communist Frank Marshall Davis, whose pro-Soviet activism earned a place on the FBI’s security index.

The composite character president transformed America by rigging the upper reaches of the deep state in favor of his chosen successor, Hillary Clinton, and against candidate and President Donald Trump. The Democrat coup clan has been counting on deep state allies to keep everything safely covered up, but the truth is now beginning to emerge.

By speaking the truth to power, John Ratcliffe could play a key role in further revelations. As Axios reports, Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr wants to bring Ratcliffe’s nomination to a committee vote next week, followed by a full Senate vote. In the meantime, the people have plenty to ponder.

Had Hillary Clinton prevailed in 2016, none of the deep state malfeasance would have come to light. If Joe Biden or some other Democrat captures the White House on November 3, all key investigations are certain to cease and crucial files could be destroyed, in the style of Hillary’s emails. As President Trump says, we’ll have to wait and see what happens.

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Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

Lloyd Billingsley


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American Academics Defend Iranian Regime Despite Dismal COVID-19 Response - David Gerstman

by David Gerstman

Iran's actions prove the regime cares nothing for foreign medical aid.

American professors are using the coronavirus pandemic as a pretext for demanding the U.S. lift sanctions on the Islamic Republic. Clockwise from top left: Hossein Mousavian, Hadi Kahalzadeh, Narges Bajoghli, Nader Hashemi.
A cohort of professors of Middle East studies at American universities are making common cause with the Iranian regime and using the coronavirus pandemic as a pretext for demanding that the United States lift its sanctions on the Islamic Republic. Is this a credible argument or just Iranian propaganda?

Iran's government is the leading international state sponsor of terrorism, a violator of its citizens' basic rights, and an imperial presence in Lebanon, Iraq, and Syria. It also continues its illicit nuclear weapons research. Due to Iran's malign behavior and violations of its nuclear obligations, the U.S. reimposed nuclear sanctions lifted as part of the 2015 nuclear deal and recently increased economic sanctions on the regime in response to its aggression and repression.

In March, a group of U.S. academics signed a petition calling on the Trump administration "to immediately lift all sanctions that are impeding Iran's response to the [COVID-19] outbreak, including financial sanctions." Signers included Columbia's Hamid Dabashi, Baruch College's Ervand Abrahamian, Yale's Inderpal Grewal, Berkeley's Minoo Moallem, Stanford's Robert Crews, the University of Denver's Nader Hashemi, and the University of Chicago's Alireza Doostdar.
Iran's actions prove the regime cares nothing for foreign medical aid.
Even as these academics claim that U.S. sanctions "have severely impacted Iranians' access to medical equipment and essential medicine," Iran's actions prove the regime cares nothing for foreign medical aid. In March, Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei spurned U.S. humanitarian assistance and kicked out a team from Doctors Without Borders.

The petition wasn't the only means by which professors voiced their support for the Islamic Republic; others used their academic perches to parrot or amplify Iranian propaganda. Few are as blatant as Princeton University's Hossein Mousavian — hardly a shock since he was a member of Iran's nuclear negotiating team. Mousavian also served as Iran's ambassador to Germany in 1992 when an Iranian hit team killed four Kurdish dissidents in Berlin. He dutifully ran interference for the regime to shield Iran from the consequences of perpetrating a terror attack on foreign soil. Today, Mousavian's Twitter feed is filled with tweets from others deploring U.S. policy toward Iran, including sanctions. Nothing (in English) criticizes Iran for its terror, repression, or regional aggression.

In a January essay, Mousavian called the sanctions "inhumane" and criticized the killing of Iranian Quds Force commander Gen. Qassem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Mohandes, the commander of the Iran-backed Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces, lauding them as leaders of the "resistance" against "U.S. and Israeli hegemony."

Another former regime official making an academic case against sanctions is Hadi Kahalzadeh, a doctoral fellow at the Crown Center for the Middle East Studies at Brandeis University. An economist with the Social Security Organization of Iran (SSO) for eight years, he wrote in April that "the United States needs to acknowledge its role in worsening a humanitarian crisis that threatens the lives of hundreds of thousands of Iranians." While Kahalzadeh acknowledges Iran's "mismanagement and corruption," he omits that Iran has rejected direct aid or that its own actions have prompted the sanctions.

In a similar vein, Aslı Ü. Bâli and Aziz Rana, law professors and UCLA and Cornell, respectively, argued against the use of sanctions as a foreign policy tool. Specifically, they wrote, "the coronavirus spread to Iran at a time when sanctions had already created dire conditions in the country." Like the others, they didn't address Iran's actions that prompted the sanctions.

Also arguing Iran's case is Vali Nasr, a former adviser in the Obama State Department who teaches at the School of Advance International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University. In March, Nasr argued that blocking the International Monetary Fund (IMF) loan was "not only morally reprehensible" but also "undermines America's own interests, both by enabling the virus to continue to spread and by reinforcing the image of the US as a villain." Nasr ignored Iran's malfeasance and aggression, but echoed the regime's anti-American rhetoric. The IMF funds would have supported Iran's regional aggression; there's nothing villainous about preventing that.

Nasr's colleague, Narges Bajoghli, an assistant professor of Middle East studies at SAIS, co-authored an op-ed in the New York Times claiming that continued U.S. sanctions could cause the world to "suffer the consequences of the unfettered spread of a deadly disease." She acknowledged Iran's mismanagement of the crisis but said the sanctions threatened Iran with "financial strangulation." Since the op-ed's appearance coincided with Iran's ousting of Doctors Without Borders and Khamenei's rejection of U.S. aid, events quickly disproved its premise. Additionally, even as Iran requests a $5 billion loan from the IMF, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has bragged it has $100 billion in strategic reserves.

The arguments marshalled by these academics downplay the regime's actions and duplicity.
Earlier this year, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani thanked the country's foreign ministry for its "concerted effort to influence public opinion and say 'no' to sanctions." He might instead have lauded American professors who faithfully promote the regime's propaganda. The arguments marshalled by these academics against American sanctions downplay the regime's actions that first prompted the sanctions, its refusal to accept nonfinancial aid, its massive expenditures on foreign adventures and internal repression, and its own culpability for the spread of the virus. At a time when Iran's leaders deplore their supposed poverty, professors should expose the duplicity of a regime that has ample resources to supply its proxies, destabilize the region, enrich uranium, launch satellites, and persecute its own citizens. Their willful blindness to Tehran's perfidy cements their reputations as apologists for a tyrannical regime.

David Gerstman is managing editor of Campus Watch, a project of the Middle East Forum.


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DOJ Drops Case Against Flynn - Lloyd Billingsely

by Lloyd Billingsley

And more shoes are bound to fall.

On Thursday the U.S. Department of Justice dropped the case against former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. As Fox News reports, the announcement came “after a considered review of all the facts and circumstances of this case, including newly discovered and disclosed information.”

The new information included handwritten notes from FBI agents reading: “What is our goal? 

Truth/Admission or to get him to lie so we can prosecute him or get him fired?” Agents also thought Flynn had done nothing wrong but FBI counterintelligence boss Peter Strzok kept the “Crossfire Razor” case open. When FBI agents threatened Flynn’s son with prosecution, the general pled guilty to lying. That forced him to lawyer up and in short order Flynn’s life and reputation fell into ruin. That was doubtless part of the FBI’s intention.

The case should have been dropped months ago, Sen. Charles Grassley told reporters Thursday. According to Grassley, the National Security Advisor planned major changes in the intelligence community, which sought to take him down. On the other hand, as Andrew McCarthy explains, the real quarry was Trump, target of the “Crossfire Hurricane” operation to remove him from office.

The object of the previous administration was to continue the Russia collusion investigation, even after Trump took office, with the president as the target. This mean tasking the FBI to keep digging until it found a crime or impeachable offense, but there was a problem. The FBI needed to sustain an investigation when the president had the power to shut it down. The fullness of the investigation needed to be concealed, and “that is why Flynn had to go.”

Robert Mueller and his squad of partisan Democrats turned up no evidence of Trump-Russia collusion. Even so, the case against Flynn, dragged on and Flynn was looking at serious prison time, until today. The Lt. General, a former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, tweeted a video of his son grandson reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, with the message “Justice for all.” Predictably, prominent Democrats didn’t think so.

According to House Judiciary Committee boss Jerrold Nadler, the case against Flynn was “overwhelming” and “a politicized and thoroughly corrupt Department of Justice is going to let the President’s crony simply walk away.” As Nadler put it, “We are not supposed to get special treatment because we are friends with the President or refused to cooperate with federal investigators on his behalf. The integrity of our criminal justice system is at stake, and the American people deserve answers” and Nadler will ask the DOJ Inspector General to look into the matter.

“Flynn pled guilty to lying to the FBI about his illicit Russian contacts,” tweeted House Intelligence Committee boss Adam Schiff. “His lies do not now become truths. This dismissal does not exonerate him. But it does incriminate Bill Barr.”

Sen. Elizabeth Warren charged that Barr’s “political influence is blatantly corrupt and he should resign. Sen Kamala Harris, said likewise and called Barr’s actions “the president’s personal biddings.” Sen. Richard Blumenthal called Attorney General Barr “the poster child of Trump’s complete contempt for legal norms.”

Sen. Blumenthal, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, falsely claimed to have served in Vietnam. For his part, Rep, Adam Schiff repeatedly claimed to have “direct evidence” of Trump-Russia collusion but failed to produce it even after the marathon Mueller inquisition found none. Mueller said his investigation not exonerate Trump but that is not the business of prosecutors. So Schiff’s claim that Gen. Flynn is not exonerated is equally meaningless, and as it happens, the intel committee boss and his coup clan have troubles of their own.

When Russia collusion went bust, the Democrats and their deep state allies ginned up the Ukraine hoax. That led to the impeachment inquiry, which also failed to remove President Trump from office. New information is now emerging from the intelligence community, and so far it doesn’t look favorable for the Democrats.

On May 4, acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell informed Congress that some 53 transcripts of interviews were declassified, redacted and ready for release. These include interviews with former DNI James Clapper, Loretta Lynch, Samantha Power, Andrew McCabe, Susan Rice, Ben Rhodes, and John Podesta. As Fox News reports, none of the 53 witnesses could provide evidence of collusion between Trump and Russia.

Adam Schiff sought to block release of the transcripts but will now have to face the music. Schiff was a key player in the deep state campaign against candidate and President Trump. In the style of the KGB, the upper reaches of the DOJ and FBI created a crime against an innocent man with a record of distinguished service to his country.

Flynn must now rebuild his broken life and restore his reputation. If he sought serious payback through the courts it would be hard to blame him. Meanwhile, more shoes are bound to fall, Sen. Grassley said Thursday, and the people might even expect some prosecutions. As President Trump says, we’ll have to wait and see what happens.

* * *
Photo credit: Gage Skidmore at Wikimedia Commons

Lloyd Billingsley


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Apartheid and Coronavirus in the Middle East - Khaled Abu Toameh

by Khaled Abu Toameh

Is Lebanon using the coronavirus pandemic to carry out ethnic cleansing of Palestinians?

  • Many Arabs and Palestinians took to social media to remind everyone that the only apartheid in the Middle East exists in an Arab country [Lebanon].
  • The latest Lebanese measure did not surprise those who are familiar with this Arab country's long-standing discriminatory policies of apartheid towards Palestinians.
  • According to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), "Palestinians in Lebanon cannot work in as many as 39 professions and cannot own property [real estate]."
  • The Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network, Samidoun... revealed that Palestinian refugees are "barred from 72 regulated professions, including medicine, public transit, farming and fishery."
  • It now remains to be seen whether "pro-Palestinian" groups and individuals in the West will denounce Lebanon for its continued racism and discrimination against Palestinians.

A Lebanese government directive issued on May 1 bars, until further notice, the return of "foreign maids" and Palestinian refugees, even if their families have lived in Lebanon for generations. Pictured: Soldiers stand guard at Rafik Hariri International Airport in Beirut on April 5, 2020, ahead of the arrival of flights repatriating Lebanese nationals who live in Saudi Arabia. (Photo by Anwar Amro/AFP via Getty Images)

Is Lebanon using the coronavirus pandemic to carry out ethnic cleansing of Palestinians?

A directive issued on May 1 by the Lebanese General Security, an agency responsible for immigration in Lebanon, bars, until further notice, the return of "foreign maids" and Palestinian refugees, even if their families have lived in Lebanon for generations. In the eyes of the Lebanese, there is apparently no difference between a "foreign maid" and a Palestinian Arab.

A Palestinian born and raised in an Arab country, in other words, is still considered by that Arab country to be a foreigner.

The May 1 directive, signed by Brigadier General Walid Oun, director of general security at the Rafik Hariri International Airport in Beirut, says, "accompanying maids and people of Palestinian descent" may not board Lebanese expatriate evacuation flights. These are Palestinians from Lebanon who left the country to search for work and are now seeking to return home.

The latest Lebanese measure, denounced by Palestinians and human rights organizations as "racist and inhumane," was exposed when Tarek Abu Taha, a Palestinian with Lebanese travel documents stranded in the United Arab Emirates, said that, in accordance with the directive, he was barred from a Beirut-bound flight. In a Facebook post on May 3, the 31-year-old Abu Taha wrote:
"I would like to inform everyone of what happened with me. My name is Tarek Rafic Abu Taha. I was born in Lebanon, and so was my father. My grandfather came to Lebanon when he and 14 years old and married a Lebanese woman. I studied engineering and was never involved in politics or with any party. I traveled to Dubai to search for work and got stuck there because of the coronavirus. I submitted a request to return to Lebanon (my country) and my name appeared on the flight [to Beirut]. After passing through security and passport control, I boarded the plane with the hope of seeing my wife and children, who were waiting for me. Two Lebanese security officers came to the plane and took my passport (the Lebanese travel document issued for Palestinians). One of the officers asked me about the document. I told him I'm a Palestinian-Lebanese. He asked if my father and mother were Palestinians and I said yes. He instructed me to stand on the side and took my passport. When I asked the security officer if there was any problem, he replied: This [document] is for zu'ran (thugs)."
Abu Taha said he felt "insulted" by the Lebanese security officer's derogatory remark. "I didn't do anything wrong to anyone," he added.

Abu Taha was eventually barred from taking the flight and was forced to leave the airport. "I don't understand why Palestinians are called zu'ran (thugs)," he remarked.
"The Lebanese security personnel should have been considerate of my situation because I live in Lebanon. There should be no room for racism. I don't understand their racism. My three-year-old son is still waiting for me. What should I tell him? I have been humiliated because I was being judged on the basis of my nationality."
A Lebanese security official confirmed the existence of the directive and said that Palestinians had been barred from returning ever since the Beirut airport stopped operating commercial flights. " Until now, all people being repatriated are Lebanese," the official explained. "It's not allowed for non-Lebanese to return at the moment. We will issue further circulars if anything changes."

Several Palestinian and Arab human rights organizations strongly condemned the discriminatory, racist measure taken by the Lebanese security authorities, while many Arabs and Palestinians took to social media to remind everyone that the only apartheid in the Middle East exists in an Arab country.

The Lebanese-Palestinian Dialogue Committee said that the Lebanese directive targeting Palestinians "violates basic Arab and international laws and conventions dealing with Palestinian refugees and their cause."

The Lebanon-based Palestinian Association for Human Rights said it has received appeals from several Palestinians also stranded in Arab countries because of the coronavirus crisis. The organization confirmed that the Palestinians were unable to return to their homes in Lebanon because of the Lebanese ban.

The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor said that the Lebanese directive "includes flagrant racial discrimination against Palestinian refugees holding Lebanese travel documents." The organization said that Palestinians who applied to return to Lebanon faced "racist practices and degrading treatment by Lebanese security personnel." It called on the Lebanese government to respect international conventions and treaties ensuring the right of refugees to move to and from their country without any obstacles and ensure that the coronavirus pandemic crisis is not used to legitimize racism."

The latest Lebanese measure did not surprise those who are familiar with this Arab country's long-standing discriminatory and apartheid policies towards Palestinians. According to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), "Palestinians in Lebanon cannot work in as many as 39 professions and cannot own property [real estate]."

The Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network, Samidoun, however, revealed that Palestinian refugees are actually "barred from 72 regulated professions, including medicine, public transit, farming and fishery."

Last year, tens of thousands of Palestinian refugees protested the new Lebanese work restrictions imposed on them. The demonstrations erupted after Lebanese Minister of Labor Camille Abu Sleiman declared a war on "illegal foreign labor" and gave business owners one month to obtain work permits for any non-Lebanese working illegally in the country.

In recent years, reports have surfaced in the Arab media about a large number of Palestinians who have begun leaving Lebanon because of the policies of discrimination and the economic restrictions imposed on them by the Lebanese authorities.

Even worse, a Lebanese newspaper last month published a cartoon likening Palestinians to the coronavirus. The cartoon, published on the anniversary of the Lebanese Civil War, was aimed at highlighting the Palestinians' role in the war that erupted in 1975 and resulted in an estimated 120,000 fatalities. Palestinians responded by pointing out that the cartoon was yet another example of Lebanon's racist mindset towards Palestinians.

Ironically, on the same day that the Lebanese authorities issued their directive, Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) reached an understanding to re-organize the entry of some 40,000 workers into Israel. PA Minister of Labor Nasri Abu Jeish said that the new understanding would be implemented on May 3. On that day, the first 14,000 Palestinian workers entered Israel and, due to the outbreak of the coronavirus epidemic, will stay inside the country for a period of at least a month.

While the Lebanese authorities are preventing Palestinians from returning to their homes in Lebanon, Israel is opening its doors to tens of thousands of Palestinian workers -- a move that will ease economic hardship for the Palestinians, especially during the coronavirus crisis. While Lebanon is comparing Palestinians to a dangerous virus, Israel is doing its utmost to assist the Palestinians in curbing the spread of the disease.

It now remains to be seen whether "pro-Palestinian" groups and individuals in the West will denounce Lebanon for its continued racism and discrimination against Palestinians.

If Tarek Abu Taha, the Palestinian from Lebanon, had lived in Israel and had been banned by the Israeli authorities from returning to his home, the "pro-Palestinian" groups and pundits would have been falling over themselves to condemn Israel. As far as the international community is concerned, however, Palestinians can be labelled as "thugs" with impunity and be blatantly discriminated against -- as long as it is an Arab state that is committing the abuse.
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Khaled Abu Toameh, an award-winning journalist based in Jerusalem, is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at Gatestone Institute.


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