Friday, October 8, 2021

Why the US really wants a Palestinian consulate in J'lem - Prof. Eugene Kontorovich


by Prof. Eugene Kontorovich

The US Embassy in Jerusalem already provides consular services to the Palestinians. Why do they need an independent consulate in the same city?

The Biden administration is trying to partially undo one of Israel's greatest diplomatic achievements of recent decades – the recognition of Israel's sovereignty over all of Jerusalem by the US, followed by numerous other countries. The good news is unlike many diplomatic attacks, the Israeli government has the power to stop it.

The US is pushing to open up a new diplomatic office in Jerusalem – one that would be directed to the Palestinian Authority. The US Embassy in Jerusalem already provides consular services to the Palestinians. It is unheard of to have an independent consulate in the same city where a country has an embassy. The point of creating a separate consulate is to undermine former US President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem. But under international law, the US would need Israel's permission for this move.

The US does not want to open a consulate merely to have a place for diplomatic liaisons with the PA. If that is all they wanted, they could easily do this by opening a mission in Abu Dis or Ramallah – where most other countries conduct their relations with the PA. Or they could reopen the Palestinian mission in Washington, DC, which Trump also closed. But by instead demanding that Israel accede to a consulate in Jerusalem, the administration is showing this is not just about having a convenient place for coffee with PA President Mahmoud Abbas.

Indeed, the purpose of opening the consulate is to recognize Palestinian claims to Jerusalem. If the PA has no legitimate claim to Jerusalem, there can be no reason to have a consulate there. To be sure, this is why opening the consulate is the main Israel-related policy demand of radically anti-Israel Rep. Ilhan Omar. Point of fact, former US Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro made clear before the last US election that opening a separate consulate to the Palestinians would be designed to signal US support for a Palestinian capital in that city.

It is true that the US had a consulate in Jerusalem since 1844, which was separate from the embassy. But that is because the US had not recognized Jerusalem as even being in Israel (and obviously that consulate was established without any relation to the Palestinians). When Trump recognized Jerusalem as the capital and moved the embassy, he had to close the consulate because its separate existence was simply inconsistent with this recognition. Opening the consulate would turn the clock back to before the US recognition of Jerusalem. The Biden administration knows it does not have domestic support to completely unrecognize Jerusalem – so it is catering to far-left demands by undoing the natural consequences of recognition.

This would be a big deal: Since the creation of the state, no Israeli government of any political inclination has allowed the opening of a diplomatic mission not to Israel. This would be unprecedented. While there are a few European consulates in Jerusalem not accredited to Israel, these predate the creation of the state.

If Israel allows the opening of such a consulate, it is hard to imagine how any country in the future would be diplomatically capable of opening an embassy in Jerusalem without opening a parallel mission to the PA. This would then cement the notion that "both sides" have legitimate claims to the city.

Fortunately, the current government understands how fundamental an issue this is and has strongly rejected the US proposals. Foreign Minister Yair Lapid has expressed his opposition even more firmly than then-Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did when the new administration first raised the issue. Netanyahu never had to withstand the significant ongoing pressure the US State Department continues to exert. Lapid has made it clear that he understands this is not about a diplomatic office; it is about the status of Jerusalem.

But the story is far from over, as the US has recently doubled down on its insistence. The real test of the government will be in action – in ensuring that no consulate opens even as Washington turns the diplomatic screws.

The US administration is attempting to intimidate Israel by describing the consulate as a "campaign promise" of Biden's – though it is hard to find any public statement on the issue during his election campaign. Israel's government must make it clear that sole Israeli sovereignty over Jerusalem is not a "campaign promise" – it is a fundamental, obvious axiom.

The Americans are indicating they may just try to muscle the issue, declaring that they are opening the consulate and counting on Israel to go along. Israel needs to spell out now that it will not accept a fait accompli. A diplomatic mission needs many things from the host government, from diplomatic visas and license plates to security coordination. If Bennett and Lapid want to deter the US from attempting hardball tactics, they should declare now that the government will in no way recognize a new diplomatic mission opened without its consent.


Prof. Eugene Kontorovich 


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What’s Behind the Obsessive Opposition to U.S. Aid to Israel? - Richard L. Cravatts


by Richard L. Cravatts

The soft Jew-hate of questioning military aid to the Jewish state.


While vice president Kamala Harris has been conspicuously absent from her alleged role in securing the nation’s border, she did find time for an impromptu visit with students at George Mason University in Virginia recently. At that meeting, one of the tendentious students, clearly schooled in the heterodoxy in which oppressed and oppressor animate all discussions about the world, raised the issue of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict.

The student, who identified herself as being Yemeni and Iranian, questioned Harris’s claim that activism, even by woke activists like herself, presumably, can result in substantive change.

“You brought up how the power of the people and demonstrations and organizing is very valuable in America,” the student told the Vice President, “but I see that over the summer there have been protests and demonstrations in astronomical numbers standing with Palestine,” referring to the widespread denunciation of Israel that occurred in the wake of the May conflict in Gaza as a result of Hamas’s showering Israeli neighborhoods with rockets meant to kill Jews.

“But then just a few days ago there were funds allocated to continue backing Israel,” the student continued, adding, with words that were not corrected by the VP and which subsequently drew criticism from many quarters as a result, “which hurts my heart because it’s ethnic genocide and displacement of people, the same that happened in America, and I’m sure you’re aware of this.”

Harris was roundly condemned for not correcting the student when she suggested that Israel was committing genocide and was displacing an indigenous people, which the student likened America’s treatment of Native Americans, and instead mollified her by saying that “your voice, your perspective, your experience, your truth should not be suppressed.”

That thinking—that there can many truths and that “narratives” can replace facts in assessing world affairs or any other topic—is, of course, rampant on university campuses, as is the false narrative that Israel is committing genocide against the ever-aggrieved Palestinians, whose numbers, contrary to the genocide libel, have grown from some half a million at Israel’s founding to some 5-6 million today.

The Vice President has since walked back her reaction to the student’s loaded statements and reaffirmed her support of the Jewish state, but in the comments was another troubling slander that has repeatedly shown itself in attacks on Israel. After the student referred to the recent vote on funding for Iron Dome when she noted that “ . . . a few days ago there were funds allocated to continue backing Israel,” she expanded on that idea by adding that “a lot of taxpayer money is allocated for funding the military, whether it’s in backing Saudi Arabia or in Palestine.”

One thing is clear in the behavior and rhetoric of the hate-Israel crowd: they have become adept at focusing obsessively and singularly on Israel and Israel alone, how it behaves, who its victims are, what human and civil rights of which it allegedly deprives the Arabs, and what crimes against humanity it continues to perpetrate in its brutal, unlawful occupation of the lands of an indigenous people. And a key part of that dissection of every part of Israel’s existence is the amount of aid the Jewish state receives from the United States, “a lot of taxpayer money,” as the students put it, some $3.4 billion annually.

The brief exchange between the Vice President and the George Mason student is yet another example of how, when Israel is involved, normally disinterested people become experts on the rules of war and body counts of those killed by Jews and suddenly care only about assessing the appropriate levels of U.S. aid being doled out to one foreign state, trying to decide what levels of aid, if any, are acceptable. Taxpayers who are watching their elected officials vote on a 2700-page, multi-trillion-dollar infrastructure bill—a bill that includes such critical items as $5 billion for low/zero emissions school buses and $2.5 billion in green energy subsidies for schools and non-profits—seem only to question the value of federal investments when those funds are earmarked for weaponry that will aid Israel in defending itself from the genocidal jihadists who surround it.

Remember, too, that U.S. military aid to Israel, in essence, is a gravy train for American defense contractors, since Israel is contractually obliged to use more than three-quarters of the U.S. aid it receives to purchase weapons and defense systems from U.S.-based companies. Billions in foreign aid to Israel, therefore, is less likely to be subject to corruption and fraud; it cannot and does not, for example, find its way into the Swiss bank accounts of leaders such as Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority (whose net worth is estimated to be $100 million), or, worse, for use in the Palestinian’s repellent pay-to-slay program in which some $170 million of aid given to the Palestinian leadership was diverted to pay bounties for the psychopaths and their families who martyr themselves to murder Jews in the name of jihad.

There can be an honest debate about which countries should receive aid and in what amounts, but one thing about our support of Israel is noteworthy: in the entire existence of the Jewish state, the U.S. has never had to put an American soldier’s boots on the ground to specifically defend Israel. While we have been loyal in material support and supplying intelligence, diplomacy, and armaments to Israel, American lives have not been lost defending it. Compare that, for instance, to the human cost of our recently terminated operations in Afghanistan where, since 2001, more than 2,300 U.S. soldiers were killed and 20,660 injured in action.

The critiquing of U.S. military aid to Israel has been a recurring theme on university campuses as part of the campus war against the Jewish state and when in May this year Israel moved to suppress rocket attacks from Gaza aimed at Jewish neighborhoods, predictably, instead of supporting Israel’s actions to protect its citizenry from the homicidal aggression of Hamas terrorists, students and faculty from dozens of universities issued statements of solidarity with the Palestinians. And the issue of U.S. aid to Israel was a bulleted point in many of those statements, along with a demand that the amount be either reduced or eliminated altogether.

An example of this sentiment can be found in the May 12th“Statement by Palestine Student Groups at Harvard Universityon Violence Against Palestinians,” in which the woke students wished to “express our outrage at the latest wave of Israeli state-sanctioned violence against Palestinians.”

Moreover, they claim, the United States is complicit in the injustices they perceive by being the primary funder of Israel’s aggression and militarism. “The United States is not a passive third-party observer of the ongoing settler colonial violence against Palestinians, but an active participant,” the tendentious statement read. “Israel is the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. foreign and military aid. In 2016, the United States passed the largest military aid package ever given to any country, providing $38 billion in military assistance over the next decade.”

In a May 18th opinion piece in the Daily Princetonian, “Princeton University community statement of solidarity with the Palestinian people,” undergraduates and graduate students, along with some 25 Princeton faculty, published a similar statement replete with similar ahistorical, false, or exaggerated claims about Israel and its behavior.

The statement suggested that, while the authors regretted the loss of life on both sides, “We also refuse the ‘two-sides’ and ‘evenhandedness’ narrative that ignores and conceals the meaningful differences between Israel — one of the most heavily militarized states in the world that receives $3.8 billion in military aid annually from the United States — and a Palestinian population resisting occupation and oppression.”  

The scrutiny given to funds flowing to the Jewish state is not confined to academia, of course. In July, a pro-Palestinian teacher’s group, New York City Educators for Palestine, issued a virulently anti-Israel statement because, they trumpeted, “we have no choice but to speak out against the injustice being committed against the Palestinian people.”

Particularly odious was the suggestion in the statement that aid to Israel should cease and that the aid is an example of Jews depriving New York taxpayers of funds that might be spent domestically. “Over $3.8 billion yearly of taxpayer money funds the purchase of weapons by the Israeli military,” the statement read. “New York City alone gives almost $145 million dollars [sic] a year to the Israeli military . . . . This is money taken from the families of New York City by a nuclear power with one of the most technologically advanced militaries in the world. We simply cannot be silent while money for our families and children here go instead to terrorizing families and children abroad,” in other words, Jews are taking money from New Yorkers to randomly terrorize “families and children” without justification. 

And any necessity for Israel defending itself from the many foes who wish it harm is simply ignored, as if the military aid the U.S. gives Israel every year is not based on the fact that homicidal Arab aggression against Israel has been a fact of life since the Jewish state’s birth.

These woke educators, like the students and faculty who express similar sentiments concerning aid to Israel, apparently have no issue with the huge sums of U.S. aid given in 2020, for example,to such countries as Afghanistan, Egypt ($1.445 billion), Iraq($1.017 billion), Jordan ($2.388 billion), and Ukraine (more than $1.5 billion in security aid between 2014 and 2019), countries which are not reliable strategic and diplomatic partners and not useful in sharing technology and intelligence in the way that Israel is and does. 

The US Department of Defense, in the case of Afghanistan, recently reported that our country’s total military expenditure from October 2001 until last December was $825 billion, not even including another $130 billion spent on reconstruction projects, for a total of just under a trillion dollars for a country that, after all of that blood and treasure, has almost immediately after our withdrawal reverted to a medieval theocratic state under Taliban rule.

And U.S. aid is not limited to the Middle East, obviously. The International Institute for Strategic Studies issued a report indicating that the United States spends some $36 billion annually on maintaining a military presence and capability in Europe. More than 170,000 active-duty personnel are currently deployed to overseas locations in some 140 countries, a presence that the Department of Defense Comptroller’s Office has estimated to cost American taxpayers over $24 billion in 2020. 

Rarely mentioned, too, is the fact that, since the end of World War II, U.S. forces have been in Japan, and in South Korea since the outbreak of the Korean War. The price tag for that military presence is in the billions.

The recent effort by the Congressional “Squad” to kill funding for Iron Dome, the defensive technology which enables Israel to neutralize incoming rockets launched by Hamas from Gaza, indicated very clearly that for Israel-haters—in politics, academia, unions, NGOs, and other elite institutions and organizations—it is not enough to merely strip Israel’s ability to defend itself with offensive weapon and military technology. 

They even revealed that their pathological loathing of the Jewish state is so fundamental to their ideology that they attempted, unsuccessfully, as it happened, to strip Israel of a defensive weapon that saves Jewish and Arab lives, alike. So, clearly, the issue is not the dollar amount the U.S. gives in aid to Israel—as it does in similar amounts to many other countries around the world. 

Those who obsess about the very existence of Israel, and who focus exclusively on it and what it receives from American taxpayers while they are indifferent or ignorant of aid given to other, less deserving nations, reveal that their anti-Semitic desire to decrease or eliminate funding to the Jewish state can only be motivated by one insidious impulse: a desire to weaken and cause harm to Israel, the Jew of nations.

Photo: AFP


Richard L. Cravatts, Ph.D., a Freedom Center Journalism Fellow in Academic Free Speech and President Emeritus of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East, is the author of Dispatches From the Campus War Against Israel and Jews.


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US Special Forces secretly deployed to Taiwan for at least a year: report - Caitlin McFall


by Caitlin McFall

US forces have secretly trained Taiwanese forces for the last year

A contingent of U.S. Special Operations and Marine forces have been secretly operating out of Taiwan as aggressive Chinese actions continue to escalate, a report said Thursday.

U.S. forces have been working to train the Taiwanese military in an attempt to shore up the Indo-Pacific nation’s defenses, first reported the Wall Street Journal


Officials told the publication that over the last year roughly two dozen members of U.S. Special Operation units and supporting troops have conducted ground training while the Marines have worked to train small boat units. 

The news comes just days after a record number of Chinese military planes entered Taiwan's air defense zone.

China’s air force flew roughly 150 fighter jets and bombers into the defense zone over a period of four days. 

Though the aircraft did not officially enter Taiwan’s air space, the show of force concerned the international community and prompted the U.S., U.K. and Japan to conduct multi-national military exercises in the region

Taiwan Premier Su Tseng-chang warned this week that "Taiwan definitely needs to be on alert."


"China is increasingly over the top," he said. "We must come together as one and strengthen ourselves, only then will countries that want to annex Taiwan not dare to easily resort to force." 

Taiwan identifies as a sovereign nation, but it is officially recognized by China, the United Nations and the U.S. as part of the one-China policy. 

The Chinese foreign ministry claimed that U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan emphasized U.S. "adherence to the one-China policy" in talks on Wednesday.

But a statement released by the White House said Sullivan "raised a number of areas where we have concern with the PRC’s [People’s Republic of China] actions," including in the South China Sea. 

"Mr. Sullivan made clear that … we will continue to invest in our own national strength and work closely with our allies and partners," the statement added.

China has repeatedly condemned Taiwanese independence and has said it will take the island back by force – a threat U.S. security officials have warned could happen within the next six years. 

"Taiwan is clearly one of their ambitions," Adm. Philip Davidson, commander of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, told a Senate Armed Services Committee in March. "I think the threat [will] manifest during this decade, in fact, in the next six years."

Fox News could not immediately reach the White House for comment.


Caitlin McFall


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Biden's Afghan Disaster: Predictable and Not Over - Terence Pr. Jeffrey


by Terence Pr. Jeffrey

Afghanistan is run by the Taliban and giving sanctuary to al-Qaida -- just like in 2001.


Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on Tuesday put a bright spotlight on President Joe Biden's imprudent withdrawal from Afghanistan.

At one point, Republican Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa asked Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, some simple yes-no questions about its consequences.

"Has the military's task to defeat terror threats from Afghanistan gotten harder?" Ernst asked.

"Yes," said Milley.

"Does the Taliban and its other terror partners have more ability to train and prepare in Afghanistan now that we've left?" she asked.

"More ability, yes," said Milley.

Ernst then cited an inexplicable statement Biden made on Aug. 20 claiming al-Qaida was gone from Afghanistan.

"What interest do we have in Afghanistan at this point with al Qaeda gone?" Biden said then. "We went to Afghanistan for the express purpose of getting rid of al Qaeda in Afghanistan, as well as-as well as getting Osama bin Laden. And we did."

The United States, of course, did get rid of bin Laden — in Pakistan. But did we get rid of al-Qaida in Afghanistan?

Not according to Marine Corps Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, who commands U.S. Central Command and who testified at Tuesday's hearing.

"Gen. McKenzie, is al-Qaida gone?" Ernst asked him.

"Senator," he said, "al-Qaida still maintains a presence in Afghanistan."

On CBS News' "Face the Nation" on Aug. 22, Major Garrett cited a CBS News/YouGov poll to Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

"You may have heard in our poll that 60% of those we talked to now fear there is more threat of terrorism in the United States because the Taliban is in control of Afghanistan," Garrett said. "Are they wrong?"

"The threat of terrorism metastasized out of Afghanistan a long time ago," Blinken said. "It is more acute in other places around the world. And in Afghanistan itself, we were able to vastly diminish al Qaeda and any threat that it poses. If it reconstitutes, we're putting in place measures over the horizon, as we say, to make sure we can see it and act on it.

Ernst asked McKenzie about Blinken's assessment.

"Secretary Blinken had said on August 22 that the threat of terrorism metastasized out of Afghanistan a long time ago," she said. "General McKenzie, is there any terrorist threat in Afghanistan now?"

"What we see is ISIS nearly rejuvenated with the prisoners that came out of Parwan and Pul-e-Charkhi prison," McKenzie responded. "They're gathering strength."

"We have yet to see how that is going to manifest itself," he said. "But we know for a certainty that they do aspire to attack us in our homeland."

"And we know the same for al-Qaida," said McKenzie.

"So that threat, it has metastasized, and it is resident in other parts of the world," he said. "In my part of the world though, it certainly is in Afghanistan."

Milley told the committee the Taliban had not lived up to the conditions of the Doha Agreement it had made with the Trump Administration, which would have required a withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan.

"Under the Doha Agreement," Milley testified, "the U.S. would begin to withdraw its forces contingent upon the Taliban meeting certain conditions, which would lead to a political agreement between the Taliban and the Government of Afghanistan."

"There were 7 conditions applicable to the Taliban and 8 applicable to the United States," Milley testified. "While the Taliban did not attack U.S. forces, which was one of the conditions, it failed to fully honor any other commitments under the Doha Agreement. Perhaps most importantly for U.S. national security, the Taliban never renounced Al Qaeda or broke its affiliation with them."

"In the fall of 2020," Milley said, "my analysis was that an accelerated withdrawal without meeting specific and necessary conditions risks losing the substantial gains made in Afghanistan, damaging U.S. worldwide credibility and could precipitate a general collapse of the ANDSF and the Afghan government resulting in a complete Taliban takeover or general civil war."

"Based on my advice and the advice of the commanders, then-Secretary of Defense Esper submitted a memorandum on 9 November recommending to maintain U.S. forces at a level between about 2,500 and 4,500 in Afghanistan until conditions were met for further reduction."

Initially, despite this recommendation, former President Donald Trump moved ahead with a plan to withdraw all U.S. forces.

"On 11 November 2020, I received an unclassified signed order directing the U.S. military to withdraw all forces from Afghanistan by 15 January 2021," Milley testified.

But then, Trump changed course.

"After further discussions regarding the risks associated with such a withdrawal, the order was rescinded," Milley told the committee.

"When President Biden was inaugurated," Milley testified, "there were approximately 3,500 U.S. troops, 5,400 NATO troops, and 6,300 contractors in Afghanistan with the specified task to train, advise and assist, along with a small contingent of counterterrorism forces."

Despite the Taliban's failure to abide by the Doha Agreement, Biden decided to go ahead and remove all U.S. forces from Afghanistan.

"On 14 April," Milley testified, "the president announced his decision and the U.S. military received a change of mission to retrograde all U.S. military forces... and transition the U.S. mission to an 'over the horizon' counterterrorism support and security assistance force."

"It is clear — it is obvious — the war in Afghanistan did not end on the terms we wanted with the Taliban now in power in Kabul," Milley said.

"We must remember that the Taliban was and remains a terrorist organization and they still have not broken ties with al-Qaida," Milley testified.

"But we must continue to protect the United States of America and its people from terrorist attacks coming from Afghanistan," he said. "A reconstituted al-Qaida or ISIS with aspirations to attack the United States is a very real possibility and those conditions, to include activity in ungoverned spaces, could present themselves in the next 12 to 36 months."

Afghanistan, run by the Taliban and providing sanctuary to al-Qaida, presents the same security problem now that it did in 2001.


Terence P. Jeffrey is the editor-in-chief of


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MK Barkat seeks to outlaw opening of US Palestinian mission in Jerusalem - Reuters and ILH Staff


by Reuters and ILH Staff

MK Nir Barkat's bill Barkat's bill would make it illegal to open a foreign mission in Jerusalem without Israel's consent.


MK Barkat seeks to outlaw opening of US Palestinian mission in Jerusalem

Nir Barkat, the former mayor of Jerusalem who is now a member of Knesset with the Likud party, is seeking to outlaw the planned reopening of a US diplomatic mission in Jerusalem to the Palestinians.

Israel's new cross-partisan government led by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett also opposes the reinauguration of the consulate, potentially buoying Barkat's effort to scupper the move, though it would strain relations with Washington.

The consulate was subsumed into the US Embassy that was moved to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv in 2018 by then-US President Donald Trump, steps hailed by Israel and condemned by Palestinians.

US President Joe Biden's administration has said it will reopen the consulate while leaving the embassy in place.

In August, Israel Hayom reported that the Biden administration was working behind the scenes to persuade Israel to reopen the consulate for the Palestinians.

Barkat's bill, which he filed in the Knesset last month and with voting as yet unscheduled, would outlaw opening a foreign mission in Jerusalem without Israel's consent.

"I think that the current Israeli government is weak. It relies on the left, it relies on radicals on our side," he told Reuters. "We must do everything we can to maintain the unity of the city of Jerusalem."

Ahmed Al-Deek, adviser to the Palestinian Authority foreign ministry, said Barkat "represents the position of far-right parties in Israel which seek to block any chance of reaching a two-state solution."

Barkat said polling showed nearly 70% public support for the bill – enough to garner votes from within the coalition. Asked for Bennett's position, his spokesman cast the bill as a PR stunt, saying: "We don't comment on trolling."

US officials have been largely reticent on the issue, saying only that the reopening process remains in effect.

Asked whether precedent existed in US diplomacy for opening a mission over objections of a host country, the State Department's Office of the Historian declined comment.

Barkat's bill recognizes that there are a handful of countries with Jerusalem missions, like the former consulate, that predate Israel's founding in 1948.

In what may signal a bid to persuade Israel to reconsider the former mission as a candidate to rejoin that group, Thomas Nides, Biden's pick for ambassador to Israel, noted in his Sept. 22 confirmation hearing: "That consulate has existed, in one form or another, for almost 130 years."

Barkat was unmoved, saying: "We respect what happened before 1948 [but] never did we give anybody consent to open up a diplomatic mission for Palestinians in the city of Jerusalem."


Reuters and ILH Staff


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New lawsuit cries corruption in Biden's EPA - Caitlin McFall


by Caitlin McFall

Lawsuit alleges Biden admin has unfairly stacked EPA committees with like-minded scientists

 FIRST ON FOX: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was slapped with a lawsuit Thursday by a former Trump-era advisory member, alleging the Biden administration’s "purge" of industry representatives violates federal law. 

In March, EPA Administrator Michael Regan removed more than 40 members from the Science Advisory Board (SAB) and seven members from the Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) in a move he argued would rid the committees of industry influence and restore science-based advisers.


But the suit, launched by Jones Day law firm on behalf of Stanley Young – who served on the SAB during the Trump administration – has argued stacking the advisory roles with like-minded scientists sympathetic to White House policies is a step too far.

"The committees are now unfairly balanced – both in terms of points of view and the functions the committees are required to perform – because they lack a single member affiliated with regulated industries," the suit read.

According to court filings obtained by Fox News, Young v. EPA contends that in removing all industry-focused officials, Regan violated the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA).

FACA was enacted in 1972 to ensure advice provided by committees is "objective" and accessible by the public. 

But the suit alleges that two leading principles of FACA have been violated in the sweeping purge of regulated industry representatives.


According to the suit, FACA is intended to ensure members' viewpoints are "fairly balanced" and that the advice of the committees is not "inappropriately influenced by the appointing authority" but rather independently judged by the advisers. 

Under the Trump administration, former EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt removed groups of scientists from the EPA’s advisory committees and filled the roles with industry-based representatives. 

It was estimated he tripled the number of industry and consulting firm scientists on the SBA alone, and reduced the number of academic scientists by half, the Washington Post reported in 2017. 

But Young v. EPA has alleged that a balance of consultants from universities, nonprofits and regulated industries was represented on the committees. 

"In its haste to eliminate all traces of industry from its advisory committees, EPA ran roughshod over FACA and its obligation to engage in reasoned decision-making," the filings read.

The suit said 47 officials have been appointed to the SBA and seven as CASAC members – but not a single member is affiliated with a regulated industry. 

In failing to comply with FACA, the filings allege the EPA further violated the Administrative Procedure Act (APA).

"Industry representation is essential because industry inputs inform the advice of both the Board and the Committee, and the committees’ advice and the resulting EPA actions significantly affect numerous regulated industries," the suit reads.

The lawsuit has called for all committee activity to come to a halt until a "balanced membership" can be put in place.

Jones Day has previously represented Fox News.


Caitlin McFall


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In first, court backs 'silent' Jewish prayer on Temple Mount - Hanan Greenwood and Nadav Shragai


by Hanan Greenwood and Nadav Shragai

The Temple Mount compound, the holiest site in Judaism, houses the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the third-holiest site for Muslims, making it the most volatile spot in Jerusalem. Jews are usually barred from praying there so as to maintain the fragile status quo in the capital.


Jewish prayers held discreetly at Temple Mount, Muslim official claims
Jews face the Temple Mount in prayer, Aug. 2, 2021 | File photo: AP/Maya Alleruzzo

An Israeli judge ruled Wednesday that the silent prayer of Jews on the Temple Mount is allowed, saying it cannot be deemed a "criminal act."

The Temple Mount is the holiest site in Judaism. The complex also houses the Al-Aqsa Mosque – the third-holiest site for Muslims – making it the most volatile spot in Jerusalem.

Seeking to maintain the fragile status quo in the capital, Jews are barred from prayer there.

Still, the practice of "silent prayer," devoid of any overt markings of a religious ceremony, such as tallit and tefillin, has been taking place almost daily in the eastern part of the mountain, with the consent of the police, informally albeit.

Wednesday saw Jerusalem Magistrates' Court Judge Bilha Yahalom issue her ruling in on appeal by Rabbi Aryeh Lippo against a police ban on his visits to the flashpoint site.

Lippo's daily arrival at the Temple Mount "indicates that this is a matter of principle and substance for him," the judge said, adding that footage of his prayer indicated that he was not in violation of current guidelines on the Temple Mount.

Wednesday's ruling was the first by an Israeli court to support Jewish prayer at the holy site.

"We have shown that the Holy Places Law of also applies to Jews and the most sacred place for the people of Israel on the Temple Mount," Lippo said, referring to the legislation ensuring freedom of worship for all religions in holy sites across Israel.

"The police also wished me luck because we all understand that it is time to fulfill the dream of the generations and serve God in Zion without fear."

A group calling itself the "Headquarters of the Temple Organizations" also welcomed of the ruling "which recognizes the positive process going on at the Temple Mount."

Right-wing lawyer Moshe Polsky said, "We welcome the court's decision, which effectively upholds what has actually been happening on the Temple Mount over the past year, and is a de facto statement for Jews who visit the Temple Mount and want to pray," he told local media.


Hanan Greenwood and Nadav Shragai 


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Biden's attorney general making his family rich calling you a domestic terrorist - Tucker Carlson

by Tucker Carlson

The media won't do anything about this, they don't believe you should have civil liberties

Tucker: Biden abusing DOJ power to brand parents domestic terrorists

'Tucker Carlson Tonight' host blasts the Justice Department for targeting powerless parents

If you lived in this country 15 years ago and you have a good memory, you may remember the creation of something called the National Security Division at the Department of Justice. It was created back in 2005 when they re-upped the Patriot Act. The point of the National Security Division, we were told at the time, was to conduct "counterterrorism and counterespionage" operations against foreign adversaries. This was the big stuff. Mostly it was Islamic terror, which was the primary threat at that time, but these were also the people in charge of busting the Chinese spies who try to steal our nuclear secrets. They stop the suicide bombers and the hijackings. Not small stuff. Crimes that threatened the nation. That was then.

Then Joe Biden became president in January, and the entire mission of the United States government changed and turned inward, against you. A few days ago, the Department of Justice, under the radical Attorney General Merrick Garland, announced that the National Security Division has a new domestic mission. According to Garland, effective immediately, the National Security Division is handling the investigation of "harassment, intimidation and threats of violence against school board members, teachers and workers in our nation’s public schools." 

The question is: who is threatening these teachers and school board members? Is it Al Qaeda? Is it the Russian government? Is it ISIS-K? No. It’s parents. Parents are angry about what’s happening in schools. Why are they angry? 

Take a look at the people Joe Biden has been nominating to senior leadership positions in the Department of Education. Take a look at YouTube videos at school board meetings across the country over the past year, and you will know exactly why parents are mad. Parents who believe in things like biological sex, and who oppose radical ideas like racial hierarchies in pre-kindergarten classrooms. Teaching kids to hate their parents. Those are the threat, according to the Biden administration.


You’ll notice if you look closely that nowhere in Merrick Garland's recent order, or the DOJ's press release, is any explanation of these "threats of violence." What threats of violence? Has violence occurred at these school board meetings? No. Look closer, and you’ll find this line: "The Justice Department will also create specialized training and guidance [that] will help school board members ... understand the type of behavior that constitutes threats."

Oh. So it’s a propaganda operation, funded by you out of the Department of so-called Justice designed to tell teachers and school board members that when parents complain, it’s domestic terrorism. It’s not the first amendment in progress. It’s not your constituents voicing legitimate complaints. It’s essentially a foreign adversary trying to kill you. 

The Biden administration is trying to tell school board members, using the Department of Justice, that they are in physical danger from parents, and those parents are national security threats. Once again, nothing like this has ever happened in this country. It is an utter perversion of the mission and the power of the United States Department of Justice. It is almost impossible to overstate how sinister and crazy this is. 


We almost never play the equivalence game because it’s tiresome, but in this case, it’s hard to resist. Imagine if Donald Trump’s DOJ designated, say, CNN anchors as domestic terrorists, put it in writing, and then told men with guns to enforce the law. How would that go over? We, for one, would be outraged by it. All decent Americans would. And it would, in fact, be less of a stretch than this order. A lot of CNN anchors made excuses for violence during the riots last year. But the media aren’t upset about this. When powerless suburban parents resist having nihilistic ruling class ideology imposed on their children, our media seem to believe it's perfectly ok to designate them terrorists and threaten them with firearms. 

JASON JOHNSON, MSNBC:  In a version of America where school board meetings have become the new culture war battleground with children caught in the crosshairs – sometimes literally, sometimes figuratively. 

KRISTOFER GOLDSMITH, INTEL EXPERT: Right now everyone from the Proud Boys to the Oath Keepers to QAnon influencers are trying to encourage their members to maniacs to show up at school board meetings 

GEOFF BENNETT, MSNBC: Some behavior is so bad, it’s being compared to domestic terrorism. 

FRANK FIGLIUZZI, MSNBC: This becomes a security crisis in a sense for the nation 

CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC: How one republican senator is pretending school board harassment and intimidation aren’t off the charts. 

BETSY WOODRUFF: Similar tactics to what happened on January 6th that are now being turned against school boards nationwide in a trend that is really disturbing and sinister 

JOY REID: Conservatives manufactured outrage over masks and history lessons, took our school boards hostage like a bunch of screaming maniacs.

So, the federal government has designated American parents who are unhappy with the education their children are receiving as domestic terrorists, and the media are defending it. This is so shameful, it’s hard to describe. The whole point of a free press is to protect the weak from the strong. But as usual, and more flagrantly every day, our media does exactly the opposite. They slobber over billionaires, they defend the powerful, they call you a bigot if you challenge George Soros, and on the other hand, they clap like seals as working-class people go to jail for thought crimes. 


They're trying to pretend that's not what they’re doing, that they’re not sucking up to power, that they’re not a Pretorian guard for the Biden administration, but they are. They’re telling you this is about "domestic terrorism," they’re repeating Merrick Garland’s own words. It has nothing to do with freedom of speech. 

On MSNBC this week, the daughter of U.S. Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey -- one of the Biden administration's chief allies in the Senate -- promised that she would air definitive proof that parents who dare to challenge the Biden administration's orthodoxy are, in reality, a grave threat to national security. She would show us the proof that the National Security Division needs to investigate these parents, treat them like criminals, for daring to speak up at their own school board meetings, before members of the school board they elected, to run schools they pay for, that educate their children. Here’s the evidence she presented: 

ALICIA MELENDEZ: I want to play some sound from these school board meetings so we can get a sense for how out of control some of these are getting. Take a listen. 

MOM: Don’t put masks on our kids anymore. I’m telling you what, I’m a mom who is fearless. I will come after you. 

MOM: You’re allowing child abuse, you’re allowing child abuse, you’re allowing child abuse, you’re allowing child abuse. 

ALICIA MELENDEZ: Things have been so scary at these meetings that the organization representing school boards across the country is asking the federal government to help. Arguing that the classification of these actions could be the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism.

So mothers stand up before a school board, which is their constitutional right, in fact, their duty as parents, to say they believe, based on a lot of scientific evidence, that their children are being hurt by a policy that makes no sense. Imagine looking at that tape, and blaming the moms. And suggesting their behavior is "scary," and their terrorists and the FBI should show up at their house and hassle them, like they’re Al Qaeda or ISIS-K, assuming that even exists. 


What did they say? "Don't put masks on kids anymore. It's child abuse." Well, actually that’s true. And anyone who has looked at the data knows it is true. Belgian pediatricians and the Belgian Academy for Medicine just issued this assessment, for example. "Testing children, imposing mouth masks and quarantine goes against the principle of ‘primum non nocere’ (first, do no harm) which is included in the Hippocratic Oath that doctors took. ... These drastic actions do much more damage to the children in the short and long term than going through the infection itself."

That’s not some angry mom from Laguna Beach. Those are physicians saying that. And if you look around, and you should, you will not find a single scientific study anywhere in the world that fundamentally contradicts that assessment. There is no science, none, behind these mask mandates for children. In fact, just days ago, Joe Biden's Secretary of Education, Miguel Cardona, tried to cite a study to back the administration's forced masking of children, which is a total outrage. And when he used this study to justify a political decision, the senior author of the study, Tracey Hoeg, said Cardona had no idea what he was talking about and had completely misrepresented her research, which, by the way, had no control group, so by definition, doesn’t prove anything. 

But don’t bother. Don’t even bother getting rational on this subject. If you dare to cite scientific conclusions out loud, you're a domestic extremist and the media will demand you be investigated by the FBI. They're justifying it the same way the Chinese government explained away murders it committed in Tiananmen Square. They're accusing people who have been completely wronged by the government of undermining domestic stability by complaining about it. What used to be called legitimate civic disagreement is now a threat to the nation.

JASON JOHNSON: Is this really about people being upset about mask mandates or are there sort of underlying disruptive forces, white nationalists, anarchists, whatever, in this country, that are using mask mandates and a public health crisis to sort of wage chaos?

Get that moron off television. That’s hurting the country. They're racist now? They’re racist because they don’t want their kids to be masked? Imagine saying something like that. There are "underlying forces at work." Secret forces you can’t see. Must be Qanon or White supremacists. There are no organized White supremacist forces in this country. We have a lot of problems. That’s not one of them. The point is: we don’t like their politics, therefore they don’t deserve civil liberties. That’s what they’re saying. That’s what they believe. 


You have to wonder if any of these people have seen a school board meeting, or if they're just repeating what they're told. It's not the parents who are causing chaos, they didn’t start this. They had a totally ordinary and justified expectation that their kids would be educated, as kids have been educated in this country for more than 100 years in public schools. The schools themselves changed, and parents slowly woke up to this fact. Their kids are being taught racism in the schools, they’re being hurt. What the hell are you doing? 

So parents go to meetings to voice objections to teachers who are advocating racial segregation and book burning, and they’re doing it on camera, they’re not doing it in secret, they’re not plotting, this isn’t the Qanon army, these are just normal Americans. This is what happened in Virginia back in May.

RIVER BEND MIDDLE SCHOOL TEACHER ANDREA WEISKOPF:  It’s funny how they are so afraid of having their children seeing another view of sexuality, gender or religion. … If you want to talk about books that are assigned, let’s read "To Kill a Mockingbird" together. If you aren’t able to consider the racial trauma this assigned book causes Black children with its White saviorism, then you have no business discussing any books.

Well exactly. If you’re telling kids that Dr. Seuss and "To Kill a Mockingbird," both of which are explicitly anti-racist, and were so before that was even a term thought up by some grafter at Boston University, if you really believe that, you're a lunatic. Say that out loud: you’re a lunatic. 


And if you’re complaining about it, you're not the one waging chaos. Look around on cable news, and you won't find anyone explaining what’s actually going on. Instead, you'll find people like Nicolle Wallace barking about how people who don’t agree with her don’t deserve civil liberties. We almost never use her name on the air. Nicolle Wallace is the physical embodiment of virtually everything that’s wrong with this country. She is, in a word, loathsome. 

But let’s be completely honest: if the federal government ever declared Nicolle Wallace a terrorist for her political opinions, we’d unhesitatingly leap to her defense with maximum vehemence. We’d do it instantly, and we wouldn’t stop. Because we believe in civil liberties.

Would she do the same for us? Of course not. If the entire staff of this show was arrested tomorrow for our beliefs, Nicolle Wallace would celebrate. That’s the difference. We believe in civil liberties, and they don’t. 

And how can you tell? Has Nicolle Wallace or anyone else at MSNBC said a word about the federal government spying on people's Google searches? That’s happening. Accidentally, the feds just unsealed court documents showing that the DOJ under Joe Biden has been obtaining sensitive, private information from anyone who typed in certain keywords into a Google search. A Minnesota judge recently approved a secret warrant requiring Google to provide tracking information on, "any user within the city of Edina who searched a fraud victim’s name." Is it a stretch to think this could be extended to ideological crimes, which are the crimes the Biden administration really cares about? No, it’s not a stretch at all. Of course, it’s happening. And no one on television even mentions it. Because they think you deserve it. Because they don’t think you have civil liberties. Because they don’t believe in God, therefore they don’t think you got those rights from God. They thought you got them from the government, and they can be taken away because you’ve been naughty, and so they applaud when they’ve been taken away. Google collects a lot of tracking information on its users, including their names, home addresses, and browsing history going back decades.

That's a story you'd expect a lot of people on the left to be concerned about. If it was 20 years ago, they would be concerned about it. The ACLU would be all over it. It’s proof, once again, the government has too much surveillance power over American citizens, and they're abusing it to spy on people who did nothing wrong. But none of the national security experts on MSNBC or CNN will even mention it. Why is that? Because their job isn’t to protect you or civil liberties but to protect the party in power. 


That could be why they won't tell you about Merrick Garland's personal stake in prosecuting people who challenge the insanity that we're seeing from school boards across the country. Turns out, Merrick Garland's daughter is married to a man who is the co-founder of an "education service company" called Panorama Education, which, you will not be surprised to learn, provides materials on critical race theory to school districts – including dismantling "unconscious bias and systemic racism in schools." 

Oh, so the thing that parents are complaining about, is the thing that Merrick Garland’s family is getting rich from. Two days ago, Merrick Garland made it a crime to complain about the beliefs that are enriching his family. Does this make sense?

This specific company has raised a ton of money from Mark Zuckerberg's foundation. Fairfax County Public Schools just signed a $1.8 million contract with Panorama to conduct a multi-year "social and emotional learning screener," giving them the right to collect "psychometrics" on the school district’s students. Do you realize they’re collecting psychometrics on your kids? What is a psychometric anyway? Some of the questions ask whether students are "sad" or "gender fluid." It’s all making Merrick Garland’s family rich. 

This is horrifying. It's also potentially illegal. According to the DOJ's own conflict of interest policy, all of this raises serious ethical issues. The DOJ's rules require employees to seek official guidance before, "participating in any matter in which his or her impartiality could be questioned." That includes situations in which matters can "Affect the financial interests" of a "relative with whom a [DOJ] employee has a close relationship."

That would probably include your daughter, Merrick Garland. Did you do that? You can be assured that no one at the DOJ's "National Security Division" is investigating that question tonight. Instead, they're promising to go after people and designate them domestic terrorists. 

This article is adapted from Tucker Carlson's opening commentary on the Oct. 6, 2021, edition of "Tucker Carlson Tonight."


Tucker Carlson


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The Power is on the Side of the Killers, Not Their Victims - Daniel Greenfield


by Daniel Greenfield

What Rep. Cori Bush’s racist defense of a black man’s killer tells us about power.


On a cold day in a Missouri winter, Mary Bratcher never came home to the trailer park where the single mother lived with her three children. She was working that night as a manager at a Casey’s General Store in Columbia helping out Mable Scruggs, another single mother, making ends meet by picking up a night shift. Neither of the two women would make it home again.

 An hour before midnight, Ernest Lee Johnson came in after a binge in which he bought three rocks of crack cocaine, traded one of them for a gun, put on a mask and came to rob Casey’s.

The plan had been to lock the employees in the back and have one of them open the safe. But then Johnson beat all three of the Casey's employees to death.

He stabbed Mary Bratcher repeatedly through her hand with a screwdriver, likely defensive wounds as she fought the monster for her life. Then he smashed her over the head with a claw hammer again and again. Johnson appeared to be aiming for her face, striking her mouth and nose, to disfigure her while killing her. He beat Mabel to death in the same vicious way.

That was 1994. Like every monster, Johnson never had any shortage of defenders.

He was convicted and sentenced to death in 1995, but the Missouri Supreme Court intervened claiming that the jury should have heard testimony that the crackhead was actually suffering from "cocaine intoxication delirium". The case went to a jury yet again which refrained from excusing the crackhead on the grounds that he had been high while murdering three people.

And then the liberal justices on the United States Supreme Court gave murderers on death row a gift with a decision falsely contending that executing murderers with intellectual limitations was cruel and unusual punishment. Any killer who could claim an IQ under 100 was home free.

Instantly every killer, no matter how cunning and clever, became retroactively retarded.

Johnson had plotted to rob the Casey's safe, he had carried out the crime, and then tried to conceal the evidence. He was evil and high, but not stupid. But the Missouri Supreme Court threw out the decision again and a third jury found the crackhead guilty all over again. But by then over a decade had passed since the original murders while the families waited for justice.

Two decades later, Johnson was finally scheduled to die when the United States Supreme Court intervened, complaining that the monster who beat two women to death with a claw hammer might suffer “painful seizures” when he’s executed by lethal injection because he has a tumor.

Since then he has found exciting new legal stratagems to delay justice, including requesting death by laughing gas and firing squad. Now he’s finally scheduled to die

Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Breyer, and Kagan wanted to hear his plea for a firing squad.

“In addition to being near instant, death by shooting may also be comparatively painless. And historically, the firing squad has yielded significantly fewer botched executions,” Sotomayor ranted in her dissent. Did the court’s wise Latina develop a sudden fondness for firing squads? No more than the rest of the delaying tactics that kept the bludgeoner alive this long.

Leftist lawyers and judges wage lawfare against the law and the victims to protect killers.

But now that Johnson is out of tricks, the Democrats have come to his defense.

Rep. Cori Bush, a former organzier for the racist hate group, Black Lives Matter, co-signed a petition demanding a commutation of Johnson's sentence because it's just like "slavery and lynching". It’s understandable that Bush would take that position considering that Mary and Mabel were white women and their worthless lives don’t matter to Black Lives Matter.

But Johnson’s first victim was the store’s third worker: Fred Jones.

Jones, an African-American man, had been the only caregiver for his mother and a disabled brother. When Johnson murdered him, he also took away the only helper left in their lives.

Johnson started out by shooting Fred Jones. But when the bullet didn't kill him, the crackhead beat the store employee to death with a hammer instead.

Then he began the rest of his killing spree.

Fred Jones had been in the cooler, perhaps because as the only male in the store he was seen as more of a threat. And he may have resisted or tried to fight Johnson, leading the crackhead to decide to kill him.

And everyone else.

The killer had shot Jones in the head. Then he beat him with the claw on the hammer fracturing his skull.

But his black life, like the lives of the over 5,800 black people who were killed in 2020, don’t matter to Rep. Bush and to Black Lives Matter. Only the lives of crackhead killers do.

Pro-crime lawfare had already put the families of Johnson’s victims through hell. When the Supreme Court decided to illegitimately intervene in his previous execution, the family members had already been there and waiting. Instead justice was denied to them for another six years.

The question is how much more torture are they going to be put through to save the killer?

Rep. Cori Bush claims that executing the killer of a black man is racist, the NAACP is rallying on behalf of the killer, not the victim, and Pope Francis has appealed to the “sacredness of human life.” Except the lives of Mary Bratcher, Mable Scruggs, and Fred Jones which are not sacred.

“This would be a crime against humanity," Rep. Bush falsely claimed.

The crime against humanity was that Mary Bratcher never came home to her three children, that Mable Scruggs also never came home to her children, and Fred Jones never returned to his mother. But that is not the only crime here. The feverish efforts to prolong the pain of their family members in order to keep the monster who killed them alive is a crime against humanity.

And a crime against justice.

Every dirty trick, every fashionable legal trend, from mental disability to the supposed risk of side effects from death penalty drugs, has been enlisted in the crackhead killer’s defense.

Now that all the tricks have run out, all that’s left is a pressure campaign on the governor.

"These death sentences are not about justice,” Bush and Rep. Emanuel Cleaver whined in their pro-killer petition. "They are about who has institutional power and who doesn’t."

They’re right.

Which House members have spoken out on behalf of Mary Bratcher, Mable Scruggs, and Fred Jones? Do Bush and Cleaver even know their names? Does Pope Francis? I doubt it.

The institutional power that allowed the killer to escape justice for 27 years is on his side.

This is not about justice, it’s about who has institutional power. And it’s the killers who have all the power and their victims who have none. After Johnson got through beating three people, poor people, to death with hammers, lawyers and judges took up what he had left undone.

Even Rep. Cori Bush and Rep. Emanuel Cleaver took a turn swinging the claw hammer.

Hollywood, the media, and politicians keep pushing the big lie that criminals are helpless victims of the system. And yet they provide the best evidence of the vast institutional power that even the lowest and vilest killer can summon against justice and the families of his victims.


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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Thursday, October 7, 2021

Why Arabs Are Annoyed With the Europeans - Khaled Abu Toameh


by Khaled Abu Toameh

By singling out the UAE, the European Parliament has chosen to side with the enemies of peace, cooperation and normalization between Israelis and Arabs.

  • The European Parliament... has enraged many Arabs by calling for boycotting Expo 2020 Dubai...

  • The timing of the resolution is problematic. It implies that the European Parliament is seeking to punish the UAE for signing a peace treaty with Israel. The resolution coincided with the first anniversary of the signing of the Abraham Accords, the term used to refer to peace agreements between Israel and the UAE and Bahrain.

  • By singling out the UAE, the European Parliament has chosen to side with the enemies of peace, cooperation and normalization between Israelis and Arabs.

  • Worse, the European Parliament saw no reason to call out Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad for their daily human rights violations against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

  • Resolutions such as the one taken by the European Parliament are the kind that give the enemies of peace in the Middle East -- evidently now including the European Parliament -- ammunition to keep fighting to achieve their goal of destroying Israel.

  • They are opposed to the existence of Israel. They do not want to see Israel in the Middle East. Most of them want to replace Israel....

  • "[The decision] raises a question mark about the real reasons that led to this hostility practiced by the European Parliament towards a country that has achieved a lot on human rights issues.... The European Parliament is supposed to support these issues, not the exact opposite." — Mona Ali Al Motawa, prominent writer from Bahrain, Al-Watan, September 21, 2021.

  • [T]he UAE does not need "a certificate [of honor] from malicious entities and will not be affected by desperate attempts to disrupt its achievements." — Saudi columnist Dr. Ali Al-Kheshaiban, Al-Ain, September 22, 2021.

  • Some very vocal Arabs, in short, are loudly telling the Europeans to mind their own business.

  • The Arabs are also telling the Europeans that if they have to meddle in the internal affairs of the Arab countries, they should at least support those states, such as the UAE, that have made real strides in human rights, rather than supporting and emboldening terrorists through calls for the boycott of global cooperation events.

The European Parliament has enraged many Arabs by calling for a boycott of Expo 2020 Dubai, taking place in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) between October 2021 and March 2022. The timing of the resolution is problematic. It implies that the European Parliament is seeking to punish the UAE for signing a peace treaty with Israel. Pictured: The Israel pavilion at Dubai Expo 2020, on September 27, 2021. (Photo by AFP via Getty Images)

The European Parliament, one of three legislative branches of the European Union, has enraged many Arabs by calling for a boycott of Expo 2020 Dubai, taking place in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) between October 2021 and March 2022.

The theme of this year's Expo 2020 Dubai, one of the world's biggest events, is "Connecting Minds, Creating the Future." The sub-themes are "Sustainability, Opportunity and Mobility" with a focus on industries, financial capital, governance, employment, education, and technology.

The European Parliament resolution calling on the EU member states not to participate in the Dubai event, and for international companies to withdraw their sponsorship, is based on the Gulf state's alleged human rights violations.

The timing of the resolution is problematic and implies that the European Parliament is seeking to punish the UAE for signing a peace treaty with Israel. The resolution coincided with the first anniversary of the signing of the Abraham Accords, the term used to refer to peace agreements between Israel and the UAE and Bahrain.

Israel is participating in Expo 2020 Dubai and visitors to the Israeli pavilion "will be invited to take an emotional 'Journey for Tomorrow' combining Israel's past, present and future that aims to forge significant relationships, create new opportunities and build a better and brighter future for all."

Shortly after the European Parliament issued its resolution against the UAE, the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, which calls for the elimination of Israel, condemned the Abraham Accords, dubbing them "a Zionist-American project aiming at promoting regional normalization with the Zionist entity and integrating it into the region."

Like the European Parliament, Hamas has in the past called for boycotting Expo 2020 Dubai event on the pretext that such activities promote normalization between Israel and the Arab countries. More recently, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad, the second-largest terrorist group in the Gaza Strip, condemned the UAE for opening an embassy in Israel.

The European Parliament resolution targeting the UAE is a valuable gift from the Europeans to Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad and all those who oppose the Abraham Accords and any peace agreement between Israel and the Arabs.

By singling out the UAE, the European Parliament has chosen to side with the enemies of peace, cooperation and normalization between Israelis and Arabs.

Worse, the European Parliament saw no reason to call out Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad for their daily human rights violations against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

The European Parliament did not call for boycotting Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad or even the Palestinian Authority (PA), headed by PA President Mahmoud Abbas, for their terrible human rights record, including restrictions and assaults on freedom of speech and the media.

Resolutions such as the one taken by the European Parliament are the kind that give the enemies of peace in the Middle East -- apparently including the European Parliament -- ammunition to keep fighting to achieve their goal of destroying Israel.

The enemies of peace are not only opposed to peace and cooperation between Israel and the Arabs. They are opposed to the existence of Israel. They do not want to see Israel in the Middle East. Most of them want to replace Israel with an Islamist state. Additionally, they do not want to see any Arab, especially those living in the Gulf, make peace with Israel or host Israelis in their countries.

The European Parliament, by calling for boycotting the Dubai event, has emboldened extremist Arabs and Muslims. It has also emboldened the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, which followed suit and joined the call for boycotting the Dubai event and "escalating worldwide pressure on the UAE dictatorship to end its support for Israel's apartheid regime."

There is no doubt that the anti-Israel movement was inspired and encouraged by the European Parliament's resolution when it employed this scathing anti-Israel rhetoric in its call for boycotting the event.

The movement apparently sees the resolution as part of a European effort to intimidate and deter Arabs from even thinking of making peace with Israel -- all under the excuse of caring for "human rights violations" in the Arab world.

Many Arabs, especially those living in the Gulf, have reacted with fury to the European Parliament resolution, highlighting the hypocrisy of the Europeans on human rights issues.

The Syrian writer Abdel Jalil Al-Saeed commented:

"The decision of the European Parliament ignored all the important achievements of the UAE in the field of human rights, due to the clear politicization of the work of a European legislative institution... The Europeans need to take a look to see human rights violations in their own countries, including prisons they built to house refugees, and the large number of homeless people on the streets, for whom rich Europe was unable to secure a decent living."

Al-Saeed pointed out that the European Parliament should have mentioned the efforts of the UAE government and people to help Afghan refugees "at a time when the Europeans, and their American ally, turned their backs on Afghanistan and abandoned the Afghani people."

Calling out the hypocrisy of the Europeans, Al-Saeed said that the European Parliament lacks fairness in its approach to a large number of Middle Eastern issues, such as its silence on the terrorist crimes of which the [Iranian-backed] Houthi militia in Yemen.

According to Emirati political analyst Dr. Amal Abdullah Al-Haddabi:

"The European Parliament decision will only harm the image of those who approved and adopted it because it reveals the ignorance of those who prepared it about the policies and positions of the UAE... These lies and slanders will not affect the image of the UAE. The resolution is based on unfounded and unreliable allegations driven by special political agendas, especially since it was issued while the whole world is waiting for the [Dubai] event, and as the UAE is working hard to hold it in an honorable manner."

Al-Haddabi added that the European resolution is:

"not only biased and based on illusions, but completely ignores all the important achievements of the UAE in the field of human rights, both in terms of caring for residents and spreading the values ​​of tolerance and coexistence that made people from more than 200 nationalities live in the UAE in peace and coexistence, unlike anywhere else in the world, including European countries where many suffer from discrimination and racism."

She pointed out that the UAE has passed a strict law prohibiting discrimination and hatred as part of a legal system that supports tolerance and coexistence, as well as the adoption of policies and laws to protect the rights of children, women, the elderly, and even prisoners.

Mona Ali Al Motawa, a prominent writer from Bahrain, denounced the European Parliament for its "worrying and suspicious" call for boycotting the Dubai event.

The decision, she said, "raises a question mark about the real reasons that led to this hostility practiced by the European Parliament towards a country that has achieved a lot on human rights issues."

"This resolution leads one to ask about the surprisingly hostile background emanating from a parliament whose movement is supposed to be towards supporting human rights issues and international principles of peace, coexistence and tolerance. The European Parliament is supposed to support these issues, not the exact opposite."

Al-Motawa said that there are attempts led by parties within the European Parliament to thwart the Dubai event, "which is considered the most important global event and a platform for developing a sustainable future vision, in which dozens of countries, companies and international organizations participate."

"Targeting this global event does not mean targeting the UAE as a country only, but also targeting aspects of development, the international economy, and the interests of major international companies and organizations. If the European Parliament had any credibility, it would have issued a statement on the issue of foreign workers or the issue of human rights violations in Iranian prisons."

Saudi columnist Dr. Ali Al-Kheshaiban wrote that the European Parliament chose strange timing for its decision regarding what it called the human rights situation in the UAE with the launch of the largest global event in Dubai. "Does the expected success of this event have something to do with issuing such crude decisions that go against logic and reality?" Al-Kheshaiban asked.

The success of the UAE in organizing the event, he added, is a foregone conclusion, and the UAE does not need "a certificate [of honor] from malicious entities and will not be affected by desperate attempts to disrupt its achievements. The best evidence of this is the huge number of people from 200 nationalities, including Europeans and Americans, who were received by the UAE and have never complained about anything that the European Parliament falsely charges."

"The European Parliament's decision was based on incorrect information, lacks credibility, and contradicts the remarkable achievements of the United Arab Emirates in the field of human development, preservation of human rights and the promotion of human rights," Bahrain's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in response to the European Parliament decision.

In addition to Bahrain, the Arab Parliament, the legislative body of the Arab League, also expressed its total rejection of the European decision and stressed that it included incorrect information and fallacies that are not based on facts or objective evidence.

"This decision is an extension of the non-objective and non-neutral approach by which the European Parliament deals with the human rights situation in the Arab world," the Arab Parliament said in a statement in which it also voiced full support for the UAE.

"The unacceptable language included in the European Parliament's resolution represents an unacceptable interference in the internal affairs of the UAE, and there is nothing in the dictionary of international parliamentary work that authorizes a regional parliamentary organization to assess the human rights situation in countries outside its regional scope."

Some very vocal Arabs, in short, are loudly telling the Europeans to mind their own business. The Arabs are also telling the Europeans that if they have to meddle in the internal affairs of the Arab countries, they should at least support those states, such as the UAE, that have made real strides in human rights, rather than supporting and emboldening terrorists through calls for the boycott of global cooperation events.

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


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