Friday, September 4, 2020

Trump Orders Feds To Begin Process Of Defunding New York, Portland And Other "Lawless" Cities - Tyler Durden

by Tyler Durden

Hat tip: Dr. Jean-charles Bensoussan

"My Administration will not allow Federal tax dollars to fund cities that allow themselves to deteriorate into lawless zones," Trump says

The feud between Trump and liberal cities which encourage protests which seeking to defund the police escalated sharply on Wednesday, when the President ordered the federal government to begin the process of defunding New York City, Portland, Seattle and Washington, cities where officials allowed "lawless" protests and cut police budgets amid rising violent crime.

In a five-page memo sent to federal agencies on Wednesday whose subject is "Reviewing Funding to State and Local Government Recipients of Federal Funds That Are Permitting Anarchy, Violence, and Destruction in American Cities" and signed by Trump, the president orders them to report to the White House Office of Management and Budget on any funding that could be redirected. New York City, Portland, Seattle and even Washington, DC are among the initial targets of the measure.

"My Administration will not allow Federal tax dollars to fund cities that allow themselves to deteriorate into lawless zones," Trump says in the memo, which mentions New York Mayor Bill de Blasio by name twice. To ensure the federal funding is not wasted or "spent in a manner that directly violates our Government’s promise to protect life, liberty, and property, it is imperative that the Federal Government review the use of Federal funds by jurisdictions that permit anarchy, violence, and destruction in America’s cities."

In a tweet late on Wednesday, Trump followed up the memo by saying that his administration "will do everything in its power to prevent weak mayors and lawless cities from taking Federal dollars while they let anarchists harm people, burn buildings, and ruin lives and businesses. We’re putting them on notice today."

In the memo, Trump writes that the city of Seattle "allowed anarchists and rioters to take over six square blocks of the city, an area the unlawful occupiers renamed the "Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone" and then the "Capitol Hill Occupied Protest." Notwithstanding the fact that law-abiding citizens live and work in the invaded area, the local government effectively endorsed this lawlessness and taking of property by, among other things, abandoning the Seattle Police Department's East Precinct building and forbidding the police force from intervening to restore order. Tragically, the Mayor allowed the unlawful occupation to persist until two teenagers were killed and at least two other persons suffered gunshot wounds. On July 1, Seattle declared the protest zone dismantled." He also denounced the "failed leadership" in Seattle whose Mayor Jenny Durkan tolerated the local anarchists until protesters – led by a city council member – came to her own doorstep.

Likewise for New York, the memo said that the city has refused to prosecute rioters, rejected the offer of federal help, and cut the police budget despite an "unconscionable rise in violence."

In New York City, officials have allowed violence to spike. In late May and early June, State and local officials allowed looting to take place for over a week, resulting in damage to an estimated 450 businesses. As of August 16, there have been 896 shootings in New York this year, compared to 492 shootings during the same period last year. The shooting victims include children as young as 1 year old. Shootings have been rising in recent weeks, and police reported 244 shootings last month compared to 88 in July 2019 -- a 177 percent increase. While violence has surged, arrests have plummeted. In a 28-day period during the months of June and July, arrests were down 62 percent from the same period in 2019. Amidst the rising violence, Mayor Bill de Blasio and the New York City Council agreed to cut one billion dollars from the New York Police Department (NYPD) budget, including by cancelling the hiring of 1,163 officers.
The memo also cites NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea’s June disbandment of plainclothes units. “Police officials have cited this decision as a factor contributing to the rise in violence,” the memo says.

In Portland, Oregon "officials have allowed violent anarchists to unlawfully riot and engage in criminal activity on the streets, including the destruction of property."

These rioters have repeatedly tried to destroy property in the city, including the Federal courthouse. They have attacked Federal law enforcement personnel protecting the Federal courthouse with Molotov cocktails, mortar-style fireworks, hard projectiles, and lasers that can cause permanent blindness. Over several days in July, the rioters set fires in and around the Federal courthouse. To date, at least 140 Federal officers have been injured in Portland."
Trump then goes on to slam state and local officials in Portland who "have taken insufficient steps to protect the Federal courthouse, and initially rejected offers of Federal law enforcement assistance" even after the apartment building of Portland mayor was set on fire.

The nation's capital was not spared from Trump's wrath: he said that "Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser allowed rioters and anarchists to engage in violence and destruction in late May and early June, requiring me to call in the National Guard to maintain law and order in the Nation's Capital."

Predictably, the memo slam the performance of Democratic mayors in each city, as well as state leaders:

"As a result of these State and local government policies, persistent and outrageous acts of violence and destruction have continued unabated in many of America’s cities, such as Portland, Seattle, and New York."
OMB Director Russell Vought, who according to the Post "applauded the review in a statement" was told to issue guidance on "restricting eligibility of or otherwise disfavoring, to the maximum extent permitted by law, anarchist jurisdictions in the receipt of Federal grants" within 30 days, while AG Bill Barr was given 14 days to put together a list of "anarchist jurisdictions" that “permitted violence and the destruction of property to persist and have refused to undertake reasonable measures” to restore order.

Vought told the NY Post that "American taxpayers who fund the great programs that our cities rely on deserve to be protected by their local city officials." He added that the administration was "exploring all options to ensure federal resources flowing to lawless cities aren’t being squandered.”

"The lack of law and order surrounding these riots, and response from local leadership, is a dereliction of duty. Our men and women in blue cannot be handcuffed by local leadership in their efforts to respond to riots and protect their fellow citizens."
The memo was drafted prior to last week’s incidents following the Republican National Convention, when angry mobs attacked those in attendance, including Senator Rand Paul in part because Bowser refused to allow additional security.

After months of referring to the frequent rioting and looting merely as "peaceful protests," mainstream media outlets began blaming the riots on Trump after they themselves admitted that it makes Democrats look bad in the polls. Democrat presidential nominee Joe Biden denounced "all violence" earlier this week, but Republicans accused him of in effect threatening Americans with more violence unless they vote for him.

* * *
In response to the memo, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo wasted no time in slamming President Donald Trump, and in a scathing statement Wednesday night, Cuomo said from the point of view of NYC, President Donald Trump is the worst president in history amid his threats to defund the city.

"Look, the best thing he did for New York City was leave," Cuomo said. "Good riddance, let him go to Florida, be careful not to get COVID."

Cuomo "all but threatened" President Trump’s safety if he returns to New York City during an emergency press briefing within a half hour on Wednesday night to tear into Trump for the order.

“He better have an army if he thinks he’s gonna walk down the street in New York. New Yorkers don’t want to have anything to do with him,” the Democrat said, all but threatening the commander in chief. But Cuomo, who like Trump hails from Queens, wasn’t done. “He can’t have enough bodyguards to walk through New York City, people don’t want to have anything to do with him.”

Cuomo said he doubted the legality of Trump’s five-page memo ordering a review of federal funds that can be redirected from New York City, Portland, Seattle and Washington, DC: "It is more of the same from him. It’s political, it is gratuitous. And it’s illegal. But it is another attempt to kill New York City."

"President Ford said drop dead. President Trump has been actively trying to kill New York City since he’s been elected," he said.

Cuomo also slammed Trump's handling of the COVID pandemic and said he is the cause of coronavirus in New York.

"It is his negligence that brought it here and his arrogance that he won't provide state and local funding to help states and cities recover from the pandemic that his negligence caused," Cuomo said. When was asked what would happen if the federal funding goes away, Cuomo said that NYC receives roughly $7 billion a year in federal aid for housing, medical, health and homeland security funding.

"I think it's because he is from New York City and New York City rejected him always," Cuomo said. He was dismissed as a clown in New York City."

He may be a clown, but he is the clown who controls the money, and for the sake of Cuomo, Trump better not get re-elected or else New York will soon transform into hellhole it was for much of the 1970s and 1980s.

Tyler Durden


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Senate chairman subpoenas FBI Director, ex-State official as Russia-Ukraine probe intensifies - John Solomon

by John Solomon

Senate chairman subpoenas FBI Director, ex-State official as Russia-Ukraine probe intensifies

A powerful Senate committee chairman has subpoenaed FBI Director Chris Wray and a former State Department official in an intensifying investigation into possible U.S. corruption in Russia and Ukraine and declared there is evidence Joe Biden's family engaged in a "glaring conflict of interest."
Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee Chairman Ron Johnson announced the actions Monday, strongly accusing Democrats of levying false allegations against him and other GOP investigators to distract from the evidence his committee has gathered about Joe and Hunter Biden's dealings in Ukraine.

"We didn't target Joe and Hunter Biden for investigation; their previous actions had put them in the middle of it," Johnson wrote in a letter released Monday that provided a detailed timeline of Joe Biden's Ukraine policy actions and his son's hiring with the Ukraine natural gas company Burisma Holdings.

"Many in the media, in an ongoing attempt to provide cover for former Vice President Biden, continue to repeat the mantra that there is 'no evidence of wrongdoing or illegal activity' related to Hunter Biden's position on Burisma's board," the senator wrote. "I could not disagree more."

Johnson noted evidence gathered by his committee showed Joe Biden met with his son's business partner, Devon Archer, in April 2014 and within a month the vice president then visited Ukraine and both his son Hunter and the business partner were put on the Burisma board as the firm faced multiple corruption investigations.

"Isn't it obvious what message Hunter's position on Burisma's board sent to Ukrainian officials?" Johnson asked. "The answer: If you want U.S. support, don't touch Burisma. It also raised a host of questions, including: 1) How could former Vice President Biden look any Ukrainian official (or any other world leader) in the face and demand action to fight corruption? 2) Did this glaring conflict of interest affect the work and efforts of other U.S. officials who worked on anti-corruption measures?"

You can read Johnson's letter here.
 2020-08-09 RHJ letter re Investigation history purpose goals 1805.pdf

Sources familiar with Johnson's investigation say the committee has secured testimony from at least one State Department official who worked in Ukraine saying the Bidens' conduct created the appearance of a conflict of interest and undercut U.S. efforts to fight corruption in Kiev.

Johnson also divulged that late last week he issued a formal subpoena to Wray demanding he immediately surrender records from the Russia collusion probe that the committee has been seeking for months.

The subpoena gives Wray until 5 p.m. on Aug. 20 to comply and demands all records from the probe known as Crossfire Hurricane, including those provided for a damning report by the Justice Department inspector general.

You can view the subpoena here
Johnson also announced his committee has prepared a subpoena for Jonathan Winer, a former Obama State Department official who had extensive contact with British intelligence operative Christopher Steele, the author of a flawed dossier that helped propel the FBI probe into now disproven Trump-Russia collusion.

"Mr Winer's counsel has not responded since Thursday as to whether he would accept service of the subpoena," Johnson said. "If he does not respond by tomorrow, we will be forced to effect service through the U.S. Marshals. More subpoenas can be expected to be issued in the coming days and weeks."

Johnson and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley have been pursuing a two-track investigation for more than two years, examining both failures and corruption in the FBI's Russia probe as well as the issue of the Bidens' conflicts in Ukraine.

As the 2020 election draws nearer and the committee's evidence mounts in the Biden portion of the probe, Democrats have repeatedly attacked Johnson and Grassley accusing them of accepting evidence with Ukrainian officials tied to Russia.

In his letter, Johnson adamantly denies he has talked with or received documents from the Russian-tied Ukrainians, accusing Democrats like Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut of knowingly fomenting disinformation.

"The only problem with their overblown handwringing is that they all knew full well that we have been briefed repeatedly, and we had already told them that we had NOT received the alleged Russian disinformation," Johnson wrote. "The very transparent goal of their own disinformation campaign and feigned concern is to attack our character in order to marginalize the eventual findings of our investigation."

Johnson's letter identifies 14 questions he believes Joe Biden should answer and said the dealings documented by his committee — all from U.S. government documents — follow a larger pattern of family members appearing to cash in on the vice president's policymaking.

"The appearance of family profiteering off of Vice President Biden’s official responsibilities is not unique to the circumstances involving Ukraine and Burisma," the senator wrote. "Public reporting has also shown Hunter Biden following his father into China and coincidentally landing lucrative business deals and investments there.

"Additionally, the former vice president's brothers and sister-in-law, Frank, James and Sara Biden, also are reported to have benefited financially from his work as well. We have not had the resources to devote investigatory time to these other allegations, but I point them out to underscore that Ukraine and Burisma seem more of a pattern of conduct than an aberration."

Johnson's announcement follows one day after Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham released a document Sunday he says shows the FBI misled senators on the Intelligence Committee during the Russia probe by falsely suggesting Steele's dossier was backed up by one of his key sources.

"Somebody needs to go to jail for this," Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) the panel's chairman, told the Fox News program Sunday Futures with Maria Bartiromo. "This is a second lie. This is a second crime. They lied to the FISA court. They got rebuked, the FBI did, in 2019 by the FISA court, putting in doubt all FISA applications."

The document in question contains the draft talking points the FBI used to brief the Senate Intelligence Committee in February 2018, including an assessment that the primary sub-source of the information contained in the Steele dossier had backed up the former MI-6 agent's reporting.

The primary sub-source "did not cite any significant concerns with the way his reporting was characterized in the dossier to the extent he could identify it," the FBI memo claimed. "... At minimum, our discussions with [the Primary Sub-source] confirm that the dossier was not fabricated by Steele."

In fact, by the time the FBI provided senators the briefing, agents had already interviewed Steele's primary sub-source, who disavowed much of what was attributed to him in the dossier as in "jest" or containing uncorroborated allegations.

You can read the FBI memo Graham released here.

John Solomon


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A Great Step Forward for World Peace - and Who Seems Determined to Ignore It - Richard Kemp

by Richard Kemp

[T]he developing relationship between Israel and the UAE is at least as significant as the peace treaty between Israel and Egypt that deservedly led to Nobel Peace Prizes for Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat.

  • Some months ago, in talks with leaders in Saudi Arabia as part of a delegation from former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Friends of Israel Initiative, together with their Executive Director and former Spanish National Security Adviser Rafael Bardaji, I heard first-hand how open the Saudis were to the prospect of embracing Israel in the future.
  • Of far greater significance, however, is the looming threat to the region from Iran and, to a lesser extent, Turkey. Most Arab countries see common interests with Israel in the face of the mullahs in Tehran with their imperial aggression in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen and beyond, coupled with insatiable nuclear ambition.
  • Notwithstanding the economic, technological and security imperatives that lie behind the evolving Middle East relationships, great credit must go to the men behind the Abraham Accord.... Mohammed bin Zayed... [and] Benjamin Netanyahu... know only too well that such actions carry with them serious risks to themselves personally and to their nations.

This week, we witnessed a symbol of perhaps the greatest step forward in world peace for decades. The first-ever direct passenger flight from Israel to the United Arab Emirates flew down the length of Saudi Arabia's airspace. Pictured: The flags of the United Arab Emirates, Israel and the United States fly at Abu Dhabi airport on August 31, 2020. (Photo by Karim Sahib/AFP via Getty Images)

This week, we witnessed a symbol of perhaps the greatest step forward in world peace for decades. The first-ever direct passenger flight from Israel to the United Arab Emirates flew down the length of Saudi Arabia's airspace. After Egypt in 1979 and Jordan in 1994, the UAE has become the third Arab state to normalise relations with the State of Israel under the new Abraham Accord.

Next month, the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize winner will be announced in Oslo. Will it go to the architects of the Abraham Accord, a momentous achievement in itself, and also a major development in a regional geopolitical realignment that is not only good for peace and prosperity in the Middle East but in the world? We knew what the answer would be to that question even before it arose. (Those who point out the deadline for 2020 nominations has passed need not expect to see it in 2021 either.)

Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, might well have caught the eye of the Nobel selectors, but unfortunately his partners in this enterprise are US President Donald J. Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Both are despised figures for the wokerati in Oslo and the fellow travellers they are desperate to impress. Compared to the perceptions of these leaders among the hard left who dominate all discourse on "peace", their achievements on the world stage are irrelevant.

Their fingerprints on the Abraham Accord ensured it also received a cool reception in much of the US and international media and in the chancelleries of Europe — more closely aligned with the hostile and backward-looking regimes of Iran, Turkey and Qatar than with those who actually strive for peace and progress and human rights in the Middle East; "the men in the arena", to borrow from former US President Theodore Roosevelt.

Yet, the developing relationship between Israel and the UAE is at least as significant as the peace treaty between Israel and Egypt that deservedly led to Nobel Peace Prizes for Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat. It paves the way for further leaps forward, with potential for similar normalisation between Israel and other countries in the region such as Bahrain, Oman, Sudan, Morocco and even Saudi Arabia. The UAE would not have acted without Saudis' blessing. Although publicly understated, the opinion in Riyadh is clear. Some months ago, in talks with leaders there as part of a delegation from former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Friends of Israel Initiative, together with their Executive Director and former Spanish National Security Adviser Rafael Bardaji, I heard firsthand how open the Saudis were to the prospect of embracing Israel in the future.

Behind the shifting geopolitical sands in the Middle East lies economic advantage as opportunities for trade and technology become both clearer and, for the Gulf states, more acutely needed. Of far greater significance, however, is the looming threat to the region from Iran and, to a lesser extent, Turkey. Most Arab countries see common interests with Israel in the face of the mullahs in Tehran with their imperial aggression in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen and beyond, coupled with insatiable nuclear ambition.

Former US President Barack Obama unwittingly helped bring about the growing closeness between Israel and the Arabs by his efforts to transfer hegemony in the Middle East to Iran, most frighteningly by his deeply flawed nuclear deal — the JCPOA — that opened the door wide to a nuclear-armed theocratic dictatorship. In the process, he released vast funds to Tehran that helped finance their proxy terrorism across the region. It is more than probable that the hapless Nobel committee would have awarded President Obama a Peace Prize for the JCPOA had they not already fallen over themselves to bestow it on him as soon as he became president in 2009, in a political message that was as much about denigrating former President George W Bush as it was about honouring its recipient.

Notwithstanding the economic, technological and security imperatives that lie behind the evolving Middle East relationships, great credit must go to the men behind the Abraham Accord. Effective peace-making, especially in the context of such long-running hostility, demands vision, boldness and above all courage. Let us not forget the bloody end of two of the Middle East leaders who risked all for peace — Anwar Sadat and his fellow Nobel Peace Prize winner Yitzhak Rabin. Mohammed bin Zayed is in a different situation to Sadat, as is Benjamin Netanyahu to Rabin, but nevertheless both know only too well that such actions carry with them serious risks to themselves personally and to their nations.

Prime Minister Netanyahu has long pursued a bold strategy aimed at achieving closer relationships across the region. Among many other under-the-radar efforts by his officials and him, Netanyahu and Yossi Cohen, head of Mossad, reportedly met Mohammed bin Zayed in secret in Abu Dhabi in 2018. One of the main planks of the Abraham Accord is Israel's agreement to put on ice its plans to apply lawful Israeli sovereignty to 30% of Judea and Samaria. Without that sovereignty plan being floated, which itself required courage and represented historic change for the State of Israel, it is unlikely the current deal would have been achieved. For Netanyahu to agree to its suspension demanded the courage to risk significant political capital at a precarious moment.

The sovereignty plan itself arose from President Trump's "Peace to Prosperity" initiative, which sought to unlock a century-long Middle East conflict. Decades of peace-processing according to long-held conventional wisdoms had led nowhere. I discussed the Peace to Prosperity proposal with some of its architects right at the start, when it was clear that they hoped to actuate exactly the situation that is now unfolding.

They knew that failure of past peace plans had been due above all to handing the Palestinian Arab leadership a veto over all progress. Whatever they said publicly or to negotiators, successive Palestinian leaders had no intention of arriving at any conclusion that involved a sovereign Jewish state in the Middle East. They did not want a two-state solution if one of those states was run by Jews; hence they refused to compromise and would only reject and disrupt. The Trump initiative envisaged an Israel more closely united with the Arab world in order to impel the Palestinians into a future accommodation. This vision may not actually be realised in the long-term but it has a better chance of success than repeatedly doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome.

Self-evidently, advancing such a plan carries great risks for President Trump and the US, as well as Israel and the other countries involved, but it also holds out the prospect of great rewards in both peace and prosperity. European leaders and many in the US were lukewarm: they simply did not understand what Trump and his team did understand — the intrinsic paradox of international strategy. As the historian Edward N Luttwak put it in his masterwork, Strategy, The Logic of War and Peace: "The entire realm of strategy is pervaded by a paradoxical logic of its own, standing against the ordinary linear logic by which we live in all other spheres of life". The Europeans and other opponents of Trump's plan mostly failed to recognise that the linear logic with which they were comfortable could result only in endless conflict; and many who did lacked the courage to embrace the strategic paradox with all its inherent risks.

Of course the heavily politicised Nobel Peace Prize committee know none of this and apparently do not want to. For years now, their decision-making has been based not on objective contributions to peace but on a left-leaning, globalist world view. Why else would they have awarded a prize to the European Union for the advancement of peace in Europe while knowing full well that peace has been maintained in Europe since 1945 because of NATO, not the EU? Why else would they have awarded a prize to arch-terrorist Yasser Arafat and seriously considered the same for Provisional IRA leader Gerry Adams? Or to North Vietnamese communist war-leader Le Duc Tho? The list goes on.

We are fortunate that the true leaders of today understand how breathtakingly unimportant are both the Nobel Committee and the EU. For all their self-importance, both groups, sadly, end up shaming themselves and working against peace, prosperity and human rights.

Colonel Richard Kemp is a former British Army Commander. He was also head of the international terrorism team in the U.K. Cabinet Office and is now a writer and speaker on international and military affairs.


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Are Democrats laying the groundwork for a contested election? - Andrea Widburg

by Andrea Widburg

Axios is reporting on a study from a "top Democratic data and analytics firm" that practically orders Biden to refuse to concede.

America has been one of the few countries in the world that can boast about the peaceful transition of power for 220 years. Even Obama left the White House peacefully, although it turned out that he'd weaponized the administrative state to undermine his successor's ability to govern. With this next election, though, Democrats and their militant front groups Antifa and BLM are laying the groundwork for a violent post-election period, something that will destroy the American political compact laid out in our Constitution.

As always, things make more sense with a little context. In 2000, Democrats questioned whether Florida had voted for George W. Bush or Al Gore. The eventual recounts (plural), followed by appeals to both the Florida court system and the United States Supreme Court, finally ended on December 13, when Gore conceded the election to Bush. It was a tremendous period of disruption and uncertainty caused by just one state.

In 2016, as you all recall, President Trump looked at the rules under the Constitution for winning the presidency and embarked upon an innovative election strategy that saw him working on getting more Electoral College votes than popular votes. Unlike Hillary Clinton, he understood that the presidency is not a popularity contest across the entire nation. Instead, to ensure that a presidential candidate has to court all the states, not just the populous ones, our election is really 50 separate state elections (plus the territories and D.C.).

Hillary still can't get over the fact that her arrogance caused her to ignore the constitutional rules. Although she's finally figured out that the Electoral College controls the election, she did an interview that sees her projecting Democrat dirty tricks onto Republicans:

Hillary recounted the dirty tricks that "Republicans" are going to do. She also conflated absentee ballots, which have a long and stable history, with mass mailing elections, which are so vulnerable to fraud that there is no election integrity at all. But it's Hillary's wrap-up that counts:

Joe Biden should not concede under any circumstances because I think this is going to drag out and, eventually, I do believe he will win, if we don't give an inch and if we are as focused and relentless as the other side is.
Everyone who heard Hillary understood that this was the opening salvo in a plan to attack the integrity of the 2020 election. On Wednesday, Axios reported on the next phase in destabilizing the American elections.

The threat Hillary first sounded now comes from a group called Hawkfish, a Michael Bloomberg–funded group. Hawkfish also works for the Democrat National Committee and some pro-Biden super-PACs.

Keep in mind as you read the Axios scenario what happened in Florida in 2000 during a traditional election. Then multiply that to 50 states, D.C., and the territories in an election that the Democrats have already positioned for fraud via mail-in voting:

A top Democratic data and analytics firm told "Axios on HBO" it's highly likely that President Trump will appear to have won — potentially in a landslide — on election night, even if he ultimately loses when all the votes are counted.
Why this matters: Way more Democrats will vote by mail than Republicans, due to fears of the coronavirus, and it will take days if not weeks to tally these. This means Trump, thanks to Republicans doing almost all of their voting in person, could hold big electoral college and popular vote leads on election night.
We've just been given a preview of coming attractions. Republicans, who have listened to Democrat hysteria about the post office, will vote in person, and their votes will be counted promptly. Democrats, who purported to be in a panic about the post office, will nevertheless vote mostly by mail. Once the in-person ballots are counted, they will have an exact tally of the number of mail-in ballots needed in each state to flip the outcome.

The Democrats, however, will need to create a lot of ballots. I do not see how anyone can look at this video and deny, given the enthusiasm all over America for Trump, that the only way Biden can win is through vote fraud:

As matters now stand, the election will be Florida on steroids, times 50 (plus D.C. and the territories). This is the kind of threat to election integrity that can, in one fell swoop, destroy the political system and lead to civil war — and I'm not even exaggerating when I say that.

Image: Vote! By Robert Stinnett; CC BY 2.0.

Andrea Widburg


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New Report: EU Funds NGOs to “Preserve Jerusalem’s Palestinian Identity” - NGO Monitor

by NGO Monitor

Of the 38,447 grants (as listed on the FTS) funded by the EU worldwide in 2019, the only examples dealing with “religious and cultural heritage properties” in a highly conflictual framework are embedded in the Palestinian context


On June 30, 2020, the European Commission updated its Financial Transparency System (FTS) with details about grants to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) authorized in 2019.1

NGO Monitor’s analysis of this newly-released information shows that, in 2019, the EU authorized seven grants involving €11.8 million for projects in Jerusalem, out of a total of 42 grants of €37.15 million for projects in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza — for implementation by NGOs. Some of these projects clearly relate to the EU’s highly politicized “strategic approach” (November 2018), namely the “urgent need to preserve the Palestinian identity of EJ (East Jerusalem).” One NGO project even seeks to “protect Islamic and Christian Waqf2 religious and cultural heritage properties against Israeli violations and threats.”

Such grants are unique: of the 38,447 grants (as listed on the FTS) funded by the EU worldwide in 2019, the only examples dealing with “religious and cultural heritage properties” in a highly conflictual framework are embedded in the Palestinian context.3

The EU’s politicized framework regarding Jerusalem is shared by some troubling actors, including the EU-designated terror group Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). In July 2020, after Israel arrested several directors of Palestinian cultural institutions in Jerusalem on terror and money-laundering charges, the PFLP published a statement echoing the EU’s language and asking the EU to intervene against Israel’s “strik[ing] the Palestinian narrative, culture and national identity,” and “target[ing] Islamic and Christian holy sites, as well as all of the Palestinian national heritage that constitutes the features of the city of Jerusalem.”

EU’s “strategic approach to…protect the Palestinian identity of the city”

In 2018, the European Commission published its “annual action programme in favour of Palestine for 2018 (including one action on budget 2019 and 2020).” One aspect, detailed in Annex 3, is the “Support to East Jerusalem in 2018, 2019 and 2020,” for which the EU has adopted a “strategic approach to sustain the presence of the Palestinian population and protect the Palestinian identity of the city.”

Towards this goal, the EU prioritized the “protection of Palestinian heritage and culture as there is an urgent need to preserve the Palestinian identity of EJ, based on the restoration of historical sites in the Old City and the promotion of cultural life and activities in EJ.”

The EU further defined “Palestinian culture and heritage in East Jerusalem are protected” as a strategic objective. As specified, “this will be done through (i) preserving cultural and historical sites with a special focus on the Old City and the surrounding area, (ii) supporting cultural, arts and music activities, and co-ordination amongst cultural related organisations in the City; (iii) ensuring Palestinian cultural heritage remains in the curriculum.”

According to the EU, this is necessary to ensure that “the shrinking space for cultural organisations does not become too restricted for organisations to continue to operate (closing of Bank accounts, detaining staff/performers, shutting down activities while in performance, cancelling registration of organisations, etc,” and that “the Israeli Ministry of Antiquities does not completely further renovation works [sic].”

The political goals of this program are reflected in several grants, for implementation by NGOs, authorized by the EU in 2019. For example:
  1. Grant: “Protecting Islamic and Christian cultural heritage in Jerusalem.”
Amount: €1,184,538
Politicized NGOs Involved: PalVision; Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs (PASSIA).
Project Description: “To contribute to preserving the Palestinian character and cultural heritage of East Jerusalem (EJ) by strengthening the Palestinian identity and enhancing the sense of belonging among Palestinians. SO1: To protect Islamic and Christian Waqf religious and cultural heritage properties against Israeli violations and threats SO2: To enhance Palestinians ability to identify and value their cultural heritage and have a good understanding of what can be done to protect their cultural heritage” (emphasis added).
  1. Grant: “Talim lil-Jamia: inclusive education intervention for East Jerusalem children.”
Amount: €1,897,650 million
Politicized NGOs Involved: Terre des Hommes (TDH) (Italy).
Project Description: “Contribute to preserve the Palestinian identity of occupied East Jerusalem. While promoting equity and inclusion adopting a rights-based approach, thus addressing the needs of Palestinian students and the overall young community of East Jerusalem (EJ), the project intends to contribute to improve the educational offer provided by the Awqaf system of EJ thus promoting its role as one of the main pillars to protect the Palestinian identity of EJ.” (Emphasis added).
It is noteworthy that the project “inclusive education intervention for East Jerusalem children” implemented by TDH (Italy) has been funded three times by the EU in 2012-2019. The project description further indicates a politicization of the project:
  • In 2016, the EU authorized a €1,193,000 grant for the project “inclusive education intervention for East Jerusalem children,” implemented by Terre des Hommes (Italy) and Al-Quds University.
    • Project Description: “Contribute to the full enjoyment of the right to education for Palestinian children in East Jerusalem. Improve the quality of and increase access to basic education in East Jerusalem with an inclusive perspective.”
    • According to Terre des Hommes (Italy), the project included the Palestinian politicized NGO Burj Luq-Luq Social Center Society.
  • In 2012, the EU authorized a €1.5 million grant for the project on “inclusive education intervention for East Jerusalem children,” implemented by Terre des Hommes (Italy).
    • Project Description: “The project intends to intervene through activities implemented at three different levels: school, family and overall community – in support and for the improvement of the quality of education in a number of the EJ Awqaf schools.”

Jerusalem Awqaf school system

The Awqaf school system is one of the primary frameworks for Palestinian students in Jerusalem. Awqaf schools are affiliated with the Palestinian Ministry of Education and use its curriculum. According to IMPACT-se,4 “The current Palestinian Authority curriculum5 taught in Awqaf schools is more radical than those previously taught…There is no evidence of a ‘rights-based approach,’ and there is the adoption of extreme and unacceptable teaching materials in the schools the EU is supporting.”

One such example, directly relevant to the EU grant, is of “material in the 2019-20 Palestinian curriculum relating to preservation and protection of Palestinian identity.” Specifically, “Children are taught the libel that Israel carries out excavations under the Al-Aqsa Mosque to cause it to collapse. They watch a video in class on the subject. This dangerous myth has been the cause of considerable bloodshed (Islamic Education, Vol. 1, Grade 5, 2019, p. 98).”

The PFLP terror group echoes the EU narrative on Jerusalem

In July 2020, Israeli security forces arrested several directors of Palestinian cultural institutions in Jerusalem, suspected of “money laundering, funding terrorism and tax evasion.” In response, on July 26, 2020, the EU-designated terror organization, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) published a statement that “calls upon the European Union to stop participating in the Zionist crime against Jerusalem.”

Echoing the EU’s own language about Jerusalem (see above), the statement affirms that “the rabid Zionist campaign against Jerusalem’s culture and art institutions and centers is part of the wide-scale attack aimed at Judaizing the city, abolishing its Arab features, and a desperate attempt to strike the Palestinian narrative, culture and national identity,” and that “this ongoing Zionist crime in the city of Jerusalem is the most striking example of the fascist racism of the Zionist entity, which targets Islamic and Christian holy sites, as well as all of the Palestinian national heritage that constitutes the features of the city of Jerusalem” (emphasis added).

In addition, Palestinian NGO Network (PNGO) and Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC) jointly published a statement accusing “Israeli policies and practices take the following forms: i) taking control of East Jerusalem’s public institutions and changing their status and character from Arab-Palestinian to Jewish-Israeli; ii) exploiting emergency and counter-terrorism laws to sweepingly outlaw or criminalize Palestinian political and non-violent activists organizations, punish their members and forcibly close their institutions iii) banning the institutions of the Palestinian Authority (PA) from the city, iv) enforcing restrictions and punitive measures against Palestinian institutions.” The signatories further call upon the international community to “publically [sic] condemn the campaign of defamation and de-legitimization led by Israel’s right wing government and lobby groups, such as NGO Monitor. Also condemn the abuse of sweeping Israeli emergency and counter-terrorism laws and the legitimization of civil laws for purpose of intimidating, restricting, criminalizing and penalizing the essential work of Palestinian CSOs in occupied EJ.”

The similarity in language between the PFLP, PNGO, and PHROC, on the one hand, and the EU on the other, parallels the numerous interactions between the PFLP-linked NGO network, including PNGO, and the EU, as documented by NGO Monitor. For example:
  • In 2011-2019, the EU authorized grants of at least €37 million to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) with ties to EU-designated terrorist groups. (Read NGO Monitor’s report “EU Funding to Terror-Linked Palestinian NGOs Since 2011”).
  • In December 2019, during a meeting with EU officials, representatives from PNGO  “refused to sign an EU grant request which stipulates among its criteria that beneficiaries must refuse to transfer any EU aid given to terrorist groups or entities…claiming Palestinian terrorist groups are merely ‘political parties.’”

2019 EU grants for projects implemented in Jerusalem by Palestinian, Israeli, and international NGOs


  1. Most of the grants authorized in 2019 will run for 36-months and are, therefore, ongoing as of August 2020.
  2. The Jerusalem Islamic Waqf controls and manages Islamic sites on and around the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem, including Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock.
  3. The only two remotely comparable grants are (1) an academic project “to map Islamic places of remembrance in Central Russia’s Volga region, and analyse their social, political, and affective life”; and (2) “a pilot project aimed at conducting a broad sample survey of at least 1500 Jewish cemeteries in selected European countries, identifying good practices of their preservation as well as proposing a model for their successful safeguarding,” as part of a broader objective of “dissemination and awareness raising of the European value of heritage and cultural diversity of Europe.”
  4. IMPACT-se (The Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education) is an independent research center specializing in the analysis of textbooks and educational curricula.
  5. In May 2020, The European Parliament condemned the Palestinian failure to remove hate and violence in textbooks:

NGO Monitor


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Almost All of America’s Failed Cities are Democrat Cities - John Perazzo

by John Perazzo

That includes 42 of the top 43 centers of violent crime.

As Marxist and anarchist radicals continue to turn Democrat-run American cities into war zones, Democrats assure us that they alone understand how the current crisis can be resolved. White House hopeful Joe Biden, for example, vows that “as President,” he “will help lead” a national “conversation” about racial justice, “and more importantly,” he “will listen” to the “anguish” of the long-forgotten “little guy.”[1]

Biden’s “little guy” narrative blends seamlessly with one of the most widely accepted claims in American political discourse today: the notion that the Democratic Party is the party that fights on behalf of the common man. We are told that Democrats in public office advocate for a wide range of policies that would improve the lives of the poorest and most powerless among us.

With regard to crime, for instance, the Democratic Party Platform declares that we need to: end the “mass incarceration” that allegedly targets nonwhite minorities; “invest more in jobs and education” than in jails; eliminate mandatory minimum sentences; “close private prisons and detention centers”; “eliminat[e] the use of cash bail” because “no one should be imprisoned merely for failing to pay fines or fees”; and “abolish the death penalty, which has proven to be a cruel and unusual form of punishment.”[2]

Regarding economic matters, the official Democratic Party Platform explicitly pledges to promote “shared prosperity” by: “rais[ing] wages for working people,” “ending poverty” in “underserved communities,” and implementing “a comprehensive agenda to invest in America’s cities.”[3]

But in city after city where Democrats already have been in charge politically for an extended period of time, we find exceedingly high—indeed, often colossal—levels of crime and poverty that degrade the quality of life for the people who reside there. And the longer Democrats have dominated the politics of those cities, the worse the conditions tend to be. In short, Democrats have transformed a host of once-great metropolises into urban prisons where the “little guy”particularly the black and Hispanic “little guy” on whose behalf Democrats typically claim to speakhas been grievously harmed by one destructive Democratic policy after another.

The Most Dangerous Cities in America

Let us first examine the political leadership of the most dangerous American cities, large and small alike. “Danger,” for purposes of this analysis, is defined in terms of the number of violent crimes committed per 1,000 residents. Four categories of violent crime are included in these calculations: homicide, rape, armed robbery, and aggravated assault. The statistics regarding the incidence of each of these crimes in each city were derived from FBI records and were published in 2019 by the custom analytics website[4]

The following chart shows the 50 cities that have the highest violent crime rates in the United States and: (a) have a population of 25,000 or more; (b) are governed by mayors who are clearly identifiable as either Democrats or Republicans;[5] and (c) have either a “Mayor-Council” (MC) form of government, a “Council-Manager” (CM) form of government, or a Hybrid (HYB) of the two.[6]  Of those 50 cities, 46 are governed by Democratic mayors and administrations; only 4 are governed by Republicans. Moreover, 42 of the top 43 are governed by Democrats.

Cities with Populations of 25,000+ Population[7] Type of Govt. Violent Crimes/ 1,000 Mayor’s Party
1 Detroit, MI 672,829 MC 20.0 Democratic
2 Memphis, TN 652,752 MC 19.5 Democratic
3 Birmingham, AL 209,403 MC 19.3 Democratic
4 Baltimore, MD 614,664 MC 18.5 Democratic
5 Flint, MI 97,379 MC 18.3 Democratic
6 St. Louis, MO 318,416 MC 18.2 Democratic
7 Wilmington, DE 71,455 MC 16.3 Democratic
8 Camden, NJ 74,417 MC 16.2 Democratic
9 Pine Bluff, AR 42,984 MC 16.0 Democratic
10 Kansas City, MO 481,360 CM 15.9 Democratic
11 S. Bernardino, CA    HYB MC 15.3 Democratic
12 Alexandria, LA 47,334 MC 14.6 Democratic
13 Little Rock, AR 198,546 CM 14.6 Democratic
14 Cleveland, OH 385,810 MC 14.5 Democratic
15 Milwaukee, WI 595,070 MC 14.3 Democratic
16 Stockton, CA 307,057 CM 14.2 Democratic
17 Monroe, LA 49,761 MC 14.1 Democratic
18 Chester, PA 34,133 MC 14.0 Democratic
19 Rockford, IL 147,404 MC 14.0 Democratic
20 Albuquerque, NM 559,270 MC 13.7 Democratic
21 Pontiac, MI 59,792 MC 13.4 Democratic
22 Kalamazoo, MI 75,988 CM 13.3 Democratic
23 Anchorage, AK 298,192 HYB 13.1 Democratic
24 Oakland, CA 419,987 HYB 12.9 Democratic
25 Indianapolis, IN 852,506 MC 12.9 Democratic
26 East Point, GA 35,282 MC 12.8 Democratic
27 Compton, CA 97,537 CM 12.1 Democratic
28 Battle Creek, MI 52,347 CM 12.0 Republican
29 East St. Louis, IL 26,662 CM 12.0 Democratic
30 Canton, OH 71,329 MC 11.9 Democratic[8]
31 Elkhart, IN 52,348 MC 11.9 Democratic
32 Newburgh, NY 28,363 CM 11.9 Democratic
33 Riviera Beach, FL 34,674 MC 11.8 Democratic
34 Wichita, KS 389,938 CM 11.8 Democratic
35 Jackson, MI 32,704 CM 11.8 Democratic
36 New Orleans, LA 391,495 MC 11.8 Democratic
37 Trenton, NJ 84,065 MC 11.8 Democratic
38 Jacksonville, AR 28,235 MC 11.7 Democratic
39 Nashville, TN 688,901 MC 11.5 Democratic
40 Lansing, MI 117,400 MC 11.1 Democratic[9]
41 Daytona B., FL 66,649 MC 11.1 Democratic
42 Albany, GA 74,904 MC 10.9 Democratic
43 Harrisburg, PA 49,192 MC 10.8 Democratic
44 Tulsa, OK 401,190 MC 10.7 Republican
45 Beaumont, TX 116,825 CM 10.7 Republican
46 Hartford, CT 123,287 MC 10.7 Democratic
47 Desert Hot Sp, CA 28,878 MC 10.7 Republican
48 Buffalo, NY 255,284 MC 10.6 Democratic
49 Gadsden, AL 35,000 MC 10.5 Democratic
50 Chattanooga, TN 182,799 MC 10.5 Democratic

The Cities with the Highest Poverty Rates

Now let us turn our attention to the political leadership of the large U.S. cities with the highest poverty rates in the nation. These are cities that: (a) have populations of at least 200,000; (b) are governed by mayors who are clearly identifiable as either Democrats or Republicans; and (c) have either a “Mayor-Council” (MC) form of government, a “Council-Manager” (CM) form of government, or a Hybrid (HYB) of the two.[10] Of the 50 cities in this list, 41 have Democratic mayors, and just 9 have Republican mayors.[11]

Rank City & State Type of Govt. Poverty Rate Mayor’s Party
1 Detroit, MI   MC 36.4% Democratic
2 Cleveland, OH   MC 34.6% Democratic
3 Buffalo, NY MC 30.3%   Democratic
4 San Bernardino, CA   HYB 28.4% Democratic
5 Newark, NJ MC 28.0%  Democratic
6 Cincinnati, OH   HYB 27.2% Democratic
7 Fresno, CA HYB 26.9%  Republican
8 Memphis, TN   MC 26.8% Democratic
9 Milwaukee, WI MC 26.6%  Democratic
10 Toledo, OH MC 25.6% Democratic
11 Baton Rouge, LA MC 25.2% Democratic
12 Philadelphia, PA MC 24.9% Democratic
13 New Orleans, LA MC 24.6%   Democratic
14 Richmond, VA MC 24.5% Democratic
15 Miami, FL HYB 24.3%    Republican
16 St. Louis, MO MC 24.2% Democratic
17 Hialeah, FL  MC 23.7%  Republican
18 Tucson, AZ CM 23.4% Democratic
19 Baltimore, MD MC 21.8%   Democratic
20 Atlanta, GA MC 21.6% Democratic
21 Pittsburgh, PA MC 21.4% Democratic
22 Houston, TX MC 20.6%  Democratic
23 Dallas, TX CM 20.5% Democratic
24 Stockton, CA CM 20.5% Democratic
25 Columbus, OH   MC 20.4%  Democratic
26 Boston, MA MC 20.2% Democratic
27 Lubbock, TX CM 20.2% Republican
28 El Paso, TX CM 20.0% Republican
29 Minneapolis, MN MC 19.9%  Democratic
30 St. Paul, MN MC 19.9%  Democratic
31 Norfolk, VA CM 19.7%   Democratic
32 Tulsa, OK MC 19.7%   Republican
33 Chicago, IL MC 19.5% Democratic
34 Tampa, FL MC 19.5% Democratic
35 Phoenix, AZ CM 19.4%   Democratic
36 Los Angeles, CA MC 19.1% Democratic
37 New York, NY MC 18.9% Democratic
38 Glendale, AZ CM 18.6%  Republican
39 San Antonio, TX CM 18.6%  Democratic
40 Bakersfield, CA CM 18.5%   Republican
41 Greensboro, NC   CM 18.5%   Democratic
42 Jersey City, NJ MC 18.3% Democratic
43 Sacramento, CA CM 18.3%   Democratic
44 Spokane, WA MC 18.3% Republican
45 Orlando, FL MC 18.2% Democratic
46 Long Beach, CA CM 18.1%  Democratic
47 Madison, WI MC 17.9% Democratic
48 Santa Ana, CA CM 17.7%  Democratic
49 Albuquerque, NM MC 17.6% Democratic
50 Oakland, CA HYB 17.6% Democratic

It should be noted that many of the cities in the foregoing charts have been governed by Democrats not just for a short time, but for many years, or even decades, on end. To cite just a few examples: St. Louis has been led exclusively and continuously by Democrats for the past 71 years; Detroit, 58 years; Baltimore, 53 years; Kansas City, 29 years; Wilmington, 47 years; Cleveland, 30 years; Harrisburg, 38 years; Houston, 38 years; Minneapolis, 42 years; Chicago, 89 years; and Milwaukee, 60 years.

The facts are crystal clear, and they are stunning. For decade upon decade, the Democratic Party has fed mountains of rhetoric to its many reliable voting blocs in scores of U.S. cities, assuring them of its deep and abiding concern for the lives of ordinary Americans. Yet it has delivered absolutely nothing in terms of measurable improvements to those lives. Instead, the Party has gradually transformed itself into a political wrecking ball whose only tangible achievement in urban America has been to perpetuate obscene levels of poverty, crime, and human misery. It is a shocking record of wretched failure that can be neither ignored nor wished away.

Why on earth would anyone believe that entrusting Democrats with the reins of governmental power on a national level, as opposed to a city level, would lead to a better result?

It is time for serious-minded individuals who may have long supported the Democratic Party for reasons they deemed worthy and honorable, to finally recognize that their party has failed and betrayed them so consistently and so monstrously, that they now have a moral imperative to walk away from it.

* * *
Photo credit: Jared Tarbell


[2] Democratic Party Platform, 2020 and 2016.
[3] Ibid.
[4] Dr. Andrew Schiller, “NeighborhoodScout’s Most Dangerous Cities – 2020” (, 1-2-2020); “How We Rank the 100 Most Dangerous Cities List” (, 2-2-2019).
[5] Any cities on NeighborhoodScout’s “Most Dangerous” list that are currently led by mayors who identify politically as “Independent,” “Nonpartisan,” “Bipartisan,” or “Other”—rather than as either “Democratic” or “Republican”—are not included on our list. Seven cities have been excluded for this reason. They are: Danville, IL; Saginaw, MI; Myrtle Beach, SC; Shawnee, OK; Farmington, NM; Springfield, MO; and Scranton, PA.    
[6] As explains, “Mayor-Council” governments can be either “Strong Mayor-Council,” where the mayor is the chief executive with expansive powers, or “Weak Mayor-Council,” where the executive authority of the mayor is less expansive. Conversely, in a “Council-Manager” form of government the mayor is a regular voting member of the city council, which in turn appoints a city manager to oversee day-to-day municipal operations, draft a budget, and implement the council's policies. Still, the mayor in such a system is a major player, responsible for such tasks as presiding at council meetings, serving as a spokesperson for the community, helping elected and appointed officials work together cohesively, and assisting the council in setting goals and making policy. (See also:
[7] Population statistics for each city are derived from and the U.S. Census Bureau.
[8] Though Thomas Bernabei was elected mayor of Canton in 2015 by running as a nonpartisan, he has been a lifelong Democrat. Thus, he is counted here as a Democrat.
[9] Though Lansing’s city races are officially considered nonpartisan, Mayor Andy Schor is a career Democrat. Thus, he is counted here as a Democrat. See Sarah Lehr, “What Can Lansing Expect from Mayor Andy Schor?” (Lansing Journal, 12-29-2017).  
[10] See Note #6.

John Perazzo is the author of Betrayal: The Democratic Party’s Destruction of America’s Cities and also of the Freedom Center's new investigative report: BLACK LIVES MATTER: Marxist Hate Dressed Up As Racial Justice.]


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