Friday, May 13, 2022

Gov. DeSantis Mandates Teaching About Crimes of Communism - Daniel Greenfield

 

by Daniel Greenfield

It's not enough to just try to push critical race theory and gender grooming out of schools. The bigger question is what replaces it. It's not enough to drive out the bad, you have to replace it with the good.

 


There are a lot of talkers, but Gov. Ron DeSantis is providing a master class in how to actually fight the Left, not just talk about it.

It's not enough to just try to push critical race theory and gender grooming out of schools. The bigger question is what replaces it. It's not enough to drive out the bad, you have to replace it with the good. And you have to push back against the Left, instead of getting bogged down on the defensive about trying to keep their pet topics and agendas out of classrooms.

Gov. DeSantis clearly understands that.

Public school teachers in Florida will soon be required to dedicate at least 45 minutes of instruction on “Victims of Communism Day” to teach students about communist leaders around the world and how people suffered under those regimes.

Speaking at Miami’s Freedom Tower before a crowd of local lawmakers and supporters, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed House Bill 395, which designates Nov. 7 as the state’s official “Victims of Communism Day,” making Florida one of a handful of states to adopt the designation.

Lefties are predictably falling into the trap of denouncing the move which just makes DeSantis' point for him about their Communist and socialist sympathies.

The bill, which DeSantis signed along with two street designations in honor of Cuban exiles, would require the instruction to begin in the 2023-2024 school year. It would require teaching of Joseph Stalin, Mao Zedong and Fidel Castro, as well as “poverty, starvation, migration, systemic lethal violence, and suppression of speech” endured under those regimes.

“That body count of Mao is something that everybody needs to understand because it is a direct result of this communist ideology,” DeSantis said, noting that tens of millions of people died in China under his rule. “I know we don’t need legislation here to do this but I think it’s our responsibility to make sure people know about the atrocities committed by people like Fidel Castro and even more recently people like Nicolas Maduro.”

That comes as the DSA is holding a lovefest with Maduro.

Vice is already fuming that, "Florida teachers can’t say gay, but they are required to teach about the “victims of communism.”

"Acknowledging that queer people exist and have human relationships? Bad. Nuanced conversations about America and race in school and the workplace? Also bad. Nearly hour-long nakedly political lessons on the “victims of communism”? Good—and mandatory, if you’re a public school in Florida."

This is what actually going on the offensive looks like.

 

Daniel Greenfield

Source: https://www.frontpagemag.com/point/2022/05/gov-desantis-mandates-teaching-about-crimes-daniel-greenfield/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Whistleblowers: FBI targeted parents via terrorism tools despite Garland's testimony that it didn't happen - Bradford Betz

 

by Bradford Betz

Jordan and Johnson said these investigations were a direct result of Garland’s directive to the FBI

 

 

Republican Reps. Jim Jordan and Mike Johnson say they have evidence that the FBI targeted parents who protested schools' COVID policies despite assurances from Attorney General Merrick Garland that it never happened. 

In a letter addressed to the Justice Department, Jordan and Johnson said they have evidence that the FBI labeled dozens of investigations into parents with a threat tag created by the bureau’s Counterterrorism Division to assess and track investigations related to school boards. The evidence comes from "brave whistleblowers" within the Department of Justice, they say in the letter addressed to Attorney General Garland.

EDUCATION SECRETARY CARDONA SOLICITED NSBA LETTER COMPARING PROTESTING PARENTS TO DOMESTIC TERRORISTS: EMAIL

Attorney General Merrick Garland speaks at a news conference May 5, 2022, at the Department of Justice in Washington.

Attorney General Merrick Garland speaks at a news conference May 5, 2022, at the Department of Justice in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

The National School Boards Association (NBSA) sent a letter to the Biden administration in September comparing parents who protested school's COVID policies to domestic terrorists. Five days later, the DOJ issued a memo directing the FBI to investigate threats to school boards. 

The memo highlighted the FBI’s National Threat Operations Center, which Jordan and Johnson likened to a "snitch-line" for tips about parents at school board meetings. 

An internal email from the FBI’s criminal and counterterrorism divisions instructed agents to apply the threat tag "EDUOFFICIALS" to all investigations and assessments of threats directed specifically at education officials. 

GARLAND REFUSES TO BACK AWAY FROM DOJ MEMO AFTER SCHOOL BOARD APOLOGY

Jordan and Johnson, citing a whistleblower, said the FBI opened investigations with the EDUOFFICIALS threat in every region of the country and relating to all types of educational settings. 

The lawmakers cited several examples where someone reported a parent, or a state elected official using the FBI’s National Threat Operations Center. 

In one investigation, FBI officials interviewed a mom for allegedly telling a school board member "we are coming for you." The person reported the mom because she belonged to a "right wing mom’s group" called "Moms for Liberty" and because she is a gun owner. FBI officials eventually determined this mom was not a threat. 

SEVENTEEN STATES ASK BIDEN, GARLAND TO STOP INTIMIDATING PARENTS INTO SILENCE AT SCHOOL BOARD MEETINGS

People gather to protest during a Loudoun County School Board meeting in Ashburn, Virginia, Oct. 26, 2021.

People gather to protest during a Loudoun County School Board meeting in Ashburn, Virginia, Oct. 26, 2021. (Reuters/Leah Millis)

In another investigation, FBI officials interviewed a dad opposed to masks, according to Jordan and Johnson. The person who reported the dad did so because he supposedly fit the bill of an "insurrectionist" and "rails against the government" and "has a lot of guns and threatens to use them" – claims which the person later admitted they had "no specific information or observations of … any crimes or threats." 

Republican elected officials in an undisclosed state were also reported by a state Democratic Party official who said that Republicans "incited violence" by expressing displeasure with school districts’ vaccine mandates. 

Jordan and Johnson said these investigations were a direct result of Garland’s Oct. 4 directive to the FBI. They noted that the FBI agents ultimately determined that these cases did not amount to terrorist threats, but they lamented the waste of "valuable law-enforcement time and resources (that) could have been expended on real and pressing threats." 

"This whistleblower information raises serious concerns that your October 4 memorandum will chill protected First Amendment activity as parents will rightfully fear that their passionate advocacy for their children could result in a visit from federal law enforcement," the lawmakers said. 

In testimony before Congress in October 2021, Garland told lawmakers that his Department of Justice had not deployed antiterrorism tools against parents protesting the actions of school boards. "I can’t imagine any circumstance in which the Patriot Act would be used in the circumstances of parents complaining about their children, nor can I imagine a circumstance where they would be labeled as domestic terrorism," he said at the time.

Fox News has reached out to the DOJ for comment but did not hear back before publication time. 

Fox News’ Tyler O’Neil and Jessica Chasmar contributed to this report.

 

Bradford Betz is a reporter for Fox News Digital. Story tips can be sent to bradford.betz@fox.com  and on Twitter: @Bradford_Betz

Source:  https://www.foxnews.com/politics/fbi-targeted-parents-via-terrorism-tools-despite-garland-testimony

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

The Leftwing Insurrection - Paul Krause

 

by Paul Krause

The real insurrection brewing in America isn’t on the right despite the constant talk and promotion of this view. It is meant to hide the reality.

According to the propaganda narrative of the media, Donald Trump and the Republican Party foment insurrection and illegitimacy in American politics. Only the noble left, with its commitment to democracy, can defend America and its institutions and rule of law. This is hogwash and anyone free from the tyrannic propaganda of the media knows it. In reality, the left peddles insurrectionist language and promotes the idea of American illegitimacy so as to endorse insurrectionist behavior—“in the name of democracy” though.

Joe Scarborough, one of the most annoying individuals to ever purvey television propaganda, has recently called the Supreme Court “illegitimate.” So have other liberal opinion writers. And what does all this talk of Court illegitimacy bring? Insurrectionist beliefs. It is an announcement for haters of America to begin burning property and launching violent protests aimed at desecrating the rule of law in the United States. It is the go-ahead for the army of Bolshevik street-warriors to assail American institutions and the freedom they uphold.

YouTube screengrab

I was just a child, but I do recall the hoopla over the 2000 election. Memory is short, but liberal writers and activists militantly wrote opinion pieces decrying the “stolen” election. Jonathan Chait, 12 years later, in New York Magazine, wrote that the 2000 election was stolen. Even more recently, Terry McAuliffe, the ungracious loser of the 2021 Virginia gubernatorial election, spewed that the 2000 election was stolen.  Twenty years after the election, many liberals cannot—will not—accept the 2000 election. Their language of a stolen election implies what? Insurrection and illegitimacy.

Though George W. Bush won his 2004 reelection with a majority of the popular vote, expanding and building upon his support for the War on Terror and the toppling of Saddam Hussein at the time, Christopher Hitchens of Vanity Fair wrote of election irregularities in my native state of Ohio—a full two years after the fact. The concern over irregularities didn’t just fade away after the election and inauguration.

I recall sitting in class the morning after the nationwide election with the classroom television on as my teacher was watching the continued count before the election was called. Despite Bush’s victory, Barbara Boxer and other congressional Democrats voted against certifying the Ohio election results. No one complained then and called Barbara Boxer a traitor.

Not only has the left consistently claimed election fraud and illegitimacy, but they also now claim the entire country is illegitimate. The United States is an illegitimate nation, an “unworthy republic,” a country that has pillaged and stolen its way to power. Freedom is an illusion. Our institutions are corrupt and rotten to the core. They must, because they are illegitimate and unworthy, be destroyed. So much for protecting American democracy and the rule of law. The very language of the left implies insurrection and in some circles, there are open calls for it.

If the left cared about the United States, as some in the media claim they do, then they wouldn’t use language that implies the opposite. But that doesn’t matter because we all know the fa├žade. They present themselves as holier than thou, the true guardians and defenders of the made-up American spirit they’ve conjured out of the lust of their distorted hearts and seek to impose that spirit on the rest of us. Those who seek to stop the coming totalitarian imposition by the left are pilloried as totalitarians. Double-speak at its finest.

By arguing and subtly-to-now-explicitly condemning the United States and calling entire institutions of the country illegitimate, the left is preparing the real insurrection against America. If there is nothing legitimate about the country, if all institutions, including the last institutions against totalitarian restructuring, are demonized and destroyed in the court of public opinion.  Then the burning and looting of America we saw just a few years ago and the continual low-scale looting of America permitted by Bolshevik Democrats today, can manifest in full force.

America must burn because all of its institutions and laws were originally enacted by white supremacists. There can be no redeeming such institutions and laws. Only by destroying America can a “new” America be made. But that won’t fly. So softer language is sometimes used. “Transformation.” “Reform.” “Realizing our ideals.” That is mere sophistry to distract from the destabilizing and totalitarian policies the left aims to actualize.

The real insurrection brewing in America isn’t on the right despite the constant talk and promotion of this view. It is meant to hide the reality. It is from the left that the real insurrection is brewing and coming.

>

“Transformation” of the Supreme Court (destroying the Supreme Court). “Transformation” of the Presidential election process (destroying the Electoral College). “Transformation” of the First and Second Amendments (destroying the First and Second Amendments). “Transformation” of the economy (destroying the market economy and replacing it with government control and cronyism). The talk of “transformation” hides the insurrectionist mentality of the left.

The left wants to destroy and alter the organs and institutions of American government to suit their own tyrannical desires. Patriotic conservatives, derided by Joe Biden as “ultra MAGA,” seek the restoration of the promise of American self-governance and the autonomy of states and communities from the federal leviathan. The left wants to implement its one-size fits all California politics across the entire country. Patriotic Americans want to be able to live their lives as they see fit without the interference of San Fransickos telling them how to live.

The militant and violent venom now directed at the Supreme Court is because the left sees, and has long seen (since the days of FDR), the Court as the last bastion of the rule of law preventing their totalitarian and insurrectionist ambitions from becoming reality. By delegitimizing the Court, the left opens the final door to their political insurrection and enacting their totalitarian agenda. The Court, with its duty to uphold the Constitution, is the last institution committed to the rule of law, upholding the American republic, and defending the true democratic spirit of America: self-governance independent of Beltway Bureaucracy.

 

Paul Krause is the editor of VoegelinView. He is the author of The Odyssey of Love: A Christian Guide to the Great Books, The Politics of Plato, and contributed to The College Lecture Today and Making Sense of Diseases and Disasters.

Source: https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2022/05/the_leftwing_insurrection.html

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Why is the PA hiding the bullet that killed Shireen Abu Akleh? - Itamar Marcus

 

by Itamar Marcus

While the Palestinian Authority and some in the international community are quick to condemn Israel for the death of Al-Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, their unsubstantiated condemnations of Israel say more about their blind hatred for Israel than it does about Abu Akleh’s death.

 

 

  • PA chief pathologist says he can’t yet determine which side killed Abu Akleh

  • Some of the PA libels related to the death of Shireen Abu Akleh:

“Intentionally and deliberately shooting Abu Akleh”
“Israel’s assassination of journalist Abu Akleh” 
“The crime of executing Abu Akleh” 
“Israel’s violent assassination”
“Deliberate targeting”
“She was murdered”
“Heinous crime”
“Israel’s atrocious assassinations of Palestinian journalists”
Israel has a “shoot-to-kill policy against the Palestinian people”
“Israel openly rewards their soldiers for the killing of Palestinians, including journalists”
Israel gives “green light to its soldiers to shoot and kill Palestinians”

While the Palestinian Authority and some in the international community are quick to condemn Israel for the death of Al-Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, their unsubstantiated condemnations of Israel say more about their blind hatred for Israel than it does about Abu Akleh’s death.

The known facts are straightforward but inconclusive. Shireen Abu Akleh was killed yesterday during a gunfight between Palestinian terrorists and Israeli soldiers in Jenin but it is not known who fired the bullet that killed her. Asked if there is “clear evidence that the bullet came from the Israeli army,” the PA’s chief pathologist who examined the body said he could not “declare any information” at this point: 

Head of An-Najah National University’s Forensic Medicine Department Dr. Rayyan Al-Ali: “The case [of Shireen Abu Akleh’s death] was transferred to autopsy… in order to confirm the direct cause of death, and to attempt to find evidence that could be connected to the party responsible for the death of Martyr Shireen Abu Akleh.” …

Journalist: “Is there clear evidence that the bullet came from the Israeli army, thereby debunking the Israeli version [of events]?”

Rayyan Al-Ali: “It is currently impossible to declare any information because the partners from the forensic laboratory, each in their own field of expertise, will study the evidence that will be gathered.”

[Al-Jazeera YouTube channel, May 11, 2022]

Obstructing the determination of the truth, the Palestinian Authority is preventing Israel from carrying out its own inquiry by withholding the bullet that killed Abu Akleh. Checking the bullet's ballistics against the rifles used by Israeli soldiers yesterday could possibly confirm or rule out an Israeli connection to her death. However, as PA minister Hussein Al-Sheikh tweeted:

“Israel has requested a joint investigation and to be handed over the bullet that assassinated the journalist Shireen, we refused that…”

[Twitter account of Hussein Al-Sheikh, May 12, 2022]

It seems that the Palestinian Authority is anxious to generate international condemnation of Israel over the death of the journalist even without evidence of Israel’s connection. Enabling Israel to examine the bullet, which may expose the truth, is not in the PA’s interest and they, therefore, refuse Israel’s request.

The fact that the professionals investigating this incident, including PA’s chief pathologist, do not know whose bullet killed Abu Akleh, does not stop the PA from libeling Israel for not only killing her but for “assassinating” her and committing “the crime of execution.”

Shireen Abu Akleh - 51-year-old Palestinian-American journalist for Al-Jazeera who was shot and killed while covering a gunbattle initiated by Palestinian terrorists who attacked Israeli forces during an operation in Jenin on May 11, 2022. The PA immediately accused Israel of shooting Abu Akleh without providing evidence. Israel rejected the accusation, noting Palestinian terrorists were filmed shooting indiscriminately and saying they had hit an Israeli soldier even though no soldiers were wounded, possibly indicating they had shot Abu Akleh. The PA rejected Israel's request to conduct a joint investigation of the incident, and its request to let it examine the bullet that killed Abu Akleh to determine whether it was fired by Israeli forces. The bullet is of a type used by both Israeli soldiers and Palestinian terrorists. In a press conference following Abu Akleh's autopsy on the day of her death, Head of An-Najah National University’s Forensic Medicine Department Dr. Rayyan Al-Ali said it could not yet be determined which side shot her.

The following are examples of the unsubstantiated accusations, condemnations, and libels being disseminated by the Palestinian Authority:

Headline: “Presidency condemns Israel’s killing of Al-Jazeera correspondent Shireen Abu Akleh”

“The Palestinian Presidency today condemned what it described as “the crime of execution” by the Israeli occupation forces of Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.

“The Presidency holds the Israeli government fully responsible for this heinous crime,” it said, stressing that “it is part of the daily policy pursued by the occupation against our people, their land, and their holy sites.”

The Presidency stressed that the crime of executing journalist Abu Akleh and wounding journalist Ali Samoudi “is part of the occupation's policy of targeting journalists to obscure the truth and commit crimes silently.”

[WAFA, official PA news agency, English edition, May 11, 2022]

Headline: “PM Shtayyeh calls on European Union and Parliament to pressure Israel to stop unilateral measures”

“Prime Minister Muhammed Shtayyeh called on the European Union and Parliament to pressure Israel to stop all unilateral measures and violations against the Palestinian people, and all attempts to impose a temporal and spatial division of the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem.

During a meeting with the President of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola, at the Parliament’s headquarters in the Belgian capital, Shtayyeh briefed the EU official on the latest developments in Palestinian as well as on Israeli violations, adding that: “Israel acts as a state above the law and maintains a shoot-to-kill policy against the Palestinian people, the latest of which was the killing of Al-Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh and teenager Thayer Khalil Yazouri.”

Shtayyeh stressed the importance of accelerating the release of the European funding and pressuring Israel to accept auditing the Palestinian tax revenues along with associated deductions by an international party to put an end to all forms of piracy of Palestinian money and the illegal deductions.”

[WAFA, official PA news agency, English edition, May 11, 2022]

Headline: “Foreign Ministry: The State of Palestine condemns in the strongest terms Israel’s assassination of journalist Abu Akleh”

“The State of Palestine condemned in the strongest terms Israel’s violent assassination and deliberate targeting earlier today of Al-Jazeera’s veteran journalist, Shireen Abu Akleh, in Jenin refugee camp, according to a Foreign Ministry press release.

Israeli occupying forces shot Shireen Abu Akleh in the head. She was murdered while reporting Israel’s crimes. She was wearing her PRESS vest, it said. “Today the voice of Palestine was killed, but the echo is eternal. “

The Foreign Ministry said for decades, Abu Akleh courageously exposed Israel’s crimes against the Palestinian people. “With her fearless reporting and her powerful persistence, Shireen became an icon of the truth. A national hero for those whose voices were silenced by Israel’s crimes,” it said.

“Israel’s assassination of Shireen is part of its well-documented and widely acknowledged war and incitement against Palestinian journalists and the freedom of expression and the press. Israel and its officials, openly and publicly, reward their soldiers for the killing of Palestinians, including journalists, with full impunity and an emboldened sense of immunity,” said the Foreign Ministry.

Shireen Abu Akleh is another victim of the international community’s willful inaction to hold Israel accountable for its continued crimes. “Israel’s war crimes and terrorism must stop. Allowing Israel’s atrocious assassinations of Palestinian journalists to pass unchecked is to sanction the killing of journalists,” it said.

“The State of Palestine calls on the journalists worldwide to expose Israel’s crimes, including crimes against journalists. The Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court must immediately and urgently open an investigation into Israel’s crimes against journalists and media personnel. Likewise, the Security Council of the United Nations must assume its responsibility and ensure the protection of the Palestinian people, in accordance with United Nations resolutions.”

The ministry concluded: “As we mourn this devastating national tragedy, we salute our journalists and media personnel for their bravery and persistence in relaying to the world the truth about what is happening in Palestine in spite of targeting them by Israel’s brutal, settler, and racist regime.”

[WAFA, official PA news agency, English edition, May 11, 2022]

Headline: “Ministry of Information: The killing of Abu Akleh requires intensifying efforts to achieve justice”

“The Ministry of Information said it was deeply shocked over the killing of the Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh and the injury of other journalists, including Ali al-Samudi, at dawn today in Jenin refugee camp.

The Israeli occupation forces killed Abu Akleh, who was wearing her clearly visible and marked journalist gear, when covering the Israeli military storming of the refugee camp, said the ministry in a statement.

“In several previous occasions, the Israeli occupation has repeatedly targeted, injured and assaulted Palestinian journalists, including the renowned journalist Abu Akleh,” it said.

“Today, Shireen joins other journalists that Israel killed as they worked on revealing the crimes of the Israeli occupation. The killing of Shireen Abu Akleh can never deter our people from continuing the struggle for freedom and will only shorten the life of this occupation and bring us closer to freedom and ending Israeli impunity,’ said the Ministry of Information.

“The killing of Abu Akleh requires consolidating and joining Palestinian, Arab and international efforts to achieve justice for the souls of Shireen and all journalists, victims of the Israeli criminal occupation, ensuring Israeli accountability and ending its impunity,” it added.

The Ministry of Information said it will intensify efforts “to achieve justice for our journalists and ensure accountability for the Israeli occupation for its crimes against journalists and further ensure ending Israeli impunity.”

[WAFA, official PA news agency, English edition, May 11, 2022]

Headline: “Palestinian officials slam Israel’s killing of Al-Jazeera correspondent”

“Palestinian officials today strongly condemned the Israeli killing of the Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, a correspondent with Al-Jazeera, who was shot dead this morning by the Israeli occupation forces in Jenin refugee camp.

Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh condemned the killing of Abu Akleh saying she was killed “while carrying out her journalistic duty in documenting the horrific crimes committed by the occupying soldiers against our people.”

The Foreign Ministry accused Israel of “Intentionally and deliberately” shooting Abu Akleh and her colleague Ali Samoudi, who was also shot in the back at the same time and is currently getting treatment in hospital.

It said in a statement that the shooting is an implementation of the Israeli government’s policy that gave the green light to its soldiers to shoot and kill Palestinians.

The General Supervisor of the Official Media, Ahmad Assaf, said that the occupation's targeting of Abu Akleh is a part of the policy of targeting the Palestinian media, adding that “the occupation aims from this crime to obliterate the truth and silence the voice of truth in order to commit its crimes silently.”

The Ministry of Information and the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, along with several other Palestinian officials and organizations, have also strongly condemned the killing of Abu Akleh.”

[WAFA, official PA news agency, English edition, May 11, 2022]

 

Itamar Marcus
Source: https://palwatch.org/page/31406

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Ali Velshi’s Delusions - Robert Spencer

 

by Robert Spencer

MSNBC anchor illustrates the extent of the Left’s detachment from reality.

 


Ali Velshi is an anchor and correspondent for MSNBC, but he is much more than that as well. He is a made guy, an accepted member of one of today’s most powerful Mafia groups, the nation’s Leftist political elite class: Velshi is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Economic Club of New York, and a member of the Board of Directors of Seeds of Peace, an organization dedicated to combating an entire laundry list of sins the Left regularly claims to find among its opponents: “Racism, Sexism, Classism, Political Violence, Colonialism, Military Occupation, anti-Semitism, and Islamophobia.” As such, Ali Velshi is a typical and indeed exemplary Leftist; not only does he hold the opinions that the Leftist establishment wants you to accept, but he is one of the principal missionaries charged with imparting these views to the masses. And he is just as deluded, hateful, and out of touch with reality as you’d expect.

As a practicing Muslim who has railed against “Islamophobia,” Velshi is also vociferously anti-Israel. On a May 2021 MSNBCbroadcast, Velshi ranted against the Jewish state, declaring that“idea that it’s even remotely controversial to call what Israel has imposed on Palestinians a form of apartheid is laughable.” In reality, of course, there is no substance whatsoever to this “apartheid” claim; it is an invention of the foes of Israel that is used to turn international public opinion against Israel, but it falls apart upon even the most superficial examination.

Apartheid was the system of racial segregation and discrimination in South Africa that lasted from 1948 into the 1990s. Black South Africans were excluded by law from operating businesses or living in certain areas, and public transportation and public services were segregated. Those who claim that Israel is an apartheid state note that Palestinians live in areas that are separate from the State of Israel, into which they can only pass for work through checkpoints where the wait is sometimes considerable.

This is, however, not because of apartheid, but because of terrorism. The checkpoints are designed to stop Palestinian jihadis from entering Israel, and they have been quite successful. Meanwhile, Arabs enjoy full legal rights in Israel, with no discrimination. Numerous Arabs live within Israel itself and are presumed loyal to the Jewish State. An Arab party forms part of the country’s governing coalition; a black party never held such power in apartheid South Africa. Israeli Arabs serve in the Knesset. The chairman of Bank Leumi, Israel’s oldest banking corporation, is an Arab, Dr. Samer Haj Yehia.

Velshi never reports such facts. He seems interested only in keeping the flame of hatred of Israel burning brightly. In that May 2021 broadcast, he added that although Hamas “may not be in the best long-term interests of the Gazans,” and admitted that Gazans had chosen “a government that most of us wouldn’t prefer,” nonetheless, “peace hasn’t really worked out” for Gazans. He declared: “Israel needs a new approach to the Palestinians and America needs a new approach to Israel.” In other words, America should abandon Israel.

Velshi is just as divorced from reality when it comes to America itself. During the Antifa riots in Minneapolis in May 2020, as the city burned, Velshi didn’t tell his hapless audience that the Left was out of control and on a mission of destruction. Instead, he put as positive a spin on the matter as he possibly could: “I want to be clear on how I characterize this,” he said. “This is mostly a protest. It is not generally speaking unruly.” In its irenic and propagandistic unreality, this was right up there with CNN’s characterization of the Kenosha, Wisconsin riots of August 2020 as “fiery but mostly peaceful.”

While in Minneapolis, Velshi did all he could to stoke hatred of the police, claiming that when they tear-gassed protestors, they were actually gratuitously tear-gassing the media: “Nobody was doing anything,” Velshi insisted. “They pulled in. They opened fire.” He claimed: “There has been no provocation, Joshua. There was nothing that happened whatsoever. The police pulled into this intersection, unprovoked, right into the middle of the crowd, split the crowd, started firing in both directions. They now have fired at us.”

Velshi later doubled down, continuing to insist that the police tear-gassed the journalists on purpose, and the propagandists hadn’t simply been standing too close to the action: “We got hit, unfortunately, with tear gas, without our masks on. Because it was that fast. We have, by the way, had a good sense of when the tear gas is going to come. The police have generally been pretty orderly about it. But what happened here, there was no warning whatsoever. They literally pulled into the station, jumped out of their car, and they just came in and started shooting. We were very close. We weren’t, by the way, anywhere near the front of the crowd. We were maintaining security protocol. We were probably in the last third of the crowd. And they intercepted the crowd. They just broke the crowd, which put us very, very close to the police and they fired on us. There were flashbangs that came out. There were canisters that came out. And you saw, they actively aimed their guns at people.”

Sure they did. But for the Left, the agenda always trumps reality. In the classic movie The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (watch it tonight), the newspaper editor says, “When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.” For Velshi and his colleagues, it’s “When the facts don’t fit the narrative, print the narrative.”

Now Velshi is pushing hard for World War III, calling on NATO to stop Putin in Ukraine. Velshi thundered: “We are past the point of sanctions and strongly-worded condemnations and the seizing of oligarchs’ mega-yachts. It is no longer sufficient as the evidence of war crimes and crimes against humanity continue to grow. Vladimir Putin has no regard for life or humanity or even the rules of war. He’s proven that time and time again, and he has also pursued the indiscriminate killing of civilians time and time again — twice before in Ukraine and in Chechnya. The global world order and potentially democracy’s survival hang in the balance. If this is not the kind of moment that the United Nations and NATO and the U.N. and the G-20 and the Council of Europe and the G-7 were made for, what is the point of these alliances if not to stop this? The world cannot sit by as Vladimir Putin continues this reign of terror.” He called for “direct military involvement” against Russia.

Now, there are plenty good reasons why Putin must be stopped, but when someone as reckless and anti-American as Ali Velshi is calling for military involvement in Ukraine, it’s a good reason in itself to pause and consider all the options. For Ali Velshi has shown time and time again that he is on the side neither of truth nor of justice, to say nothing of the American way. Like so very many Leftists today, he lives not in the real world, but in the fantasy web of the Left’s narrative, populated by legions of rogue racist cops, Israeli segregationists, and saintly Antifa rioters. He stands as an ongoing reminder of the fact that the Left is at war with reality. In the final analysis, this is a war it cannot, and must not, win.

 

Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 23 books including many bestsellers, such as The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades)The Truth About Muhammad and The History of Jihad. His latest book is The Critical Qur’an. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.

Source: https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/2022/05/ali-velshis-delusions-robert-spencer/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

The Badly Needed EastMed Pipeline Awaits Approval - Judith Bergman

 

by Judith Bergman

According to the Biden administration, -- pipelines that go via Turkey are apparently acceptable, Algerian gas pipelines are also acceptable, but the long-planned Israeli-Greek-Cypriot EastMed pipeline is not acceptable.

  • "Germany must be prepared that it could be the next country to which Gazprom cuts gas deliveries. Europe, therefore, needs a multitude of alternatives to the Russian energy supply." — German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, The New York Times, April 28, 2022.

  • The pre-feasibility studies [of the EastMed pipeline that would transport gas to Europe from Israel and Cyprus through Greece], conducted from 2015-18 and paid for by the European Union, found that the project is "technically feasible, economically viable and commercially competitive."

  • "The analysis conducted for the activity related to the economic, financial and competitiveness studies, evidenced that the [EastMed] Project contributes to the improvement of market integration of currently isolated countries such as Cyprus and some Greek regions, to the enhancement of energy security diversifying the supply sources for Europe and to the reduction of the EU-wide consumers' gas bill." — Conclusion of pre-feasibility studies published by European Commission, July 2019.

  • "Moreover, taking into account the need of additional net imports to satisfy EU gas demand by 2030 and the risk associated to the current production availability, procurement and transport of gas supply, the Project provides strategic contribution to the EU security of supply." — Conclusion of pre-feasibility studies published by European Commission, July 2019.

  • The significant rise in natural gas prices in Europe favors the economic viability of the pipeline, according to energy expert Michalis Mathioulakis, of the ELIAMEP think tank.

  • [US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria] Nuland's comments appeared especially odd as, after meeting with her counterparts in Turkey on April 4, she told the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet that more pipelines were needed in the Eastern Mediterranean. The US, it appears, prefers to steer the business to Turkey's strongman, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, rather than to America's democratic allies, Cyprus, Israel and Greece.

  • According to the Biden administration, therefore, pipelines that go via Turkey are apparently acceptable, Algerian gas pipelines are also acceptable, but the long-planned Israeli-Greek-Cypriot EastMed pipeline is not acceptable.

  • "What we are waiting for is the final report which is financed by the EU. And I repeat, the position was from the start – and that is why the study is being carried out – if it is viable, if there are investors, if the seabed permits, then it will be carried out. The US government does not decide about a European project. What everyone can see, and this is very important, is the need for the EU to cease being dependent on specific markets and the alternative channels for natural gas to Europe and the closest is none other than the basin of the eastern Mediterranean." — Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades, Cyprus Mail, April 8, 2022.

  • "[I]t must not be up to one of the parties, the United States, to impose its own energy policy upon the parties, but rather, it should be up to the parties to arrive at an energy policy that best serves their collective interest. Under Secretary Nuland's contradictory messaging on Eastern Mediterranean pipeline projects.... gives the appearance of appeasement of Turkey." — Nick Larigakis, American Hellenic Institute, Ekathimerini, April 12, 2022.

  • Turkey has been opposed to the EastMed pipeline project all along... [W]hen the Biden administration first announced its unofficial opposition to the project, the reasons given by the US were primarily environmental and financial. Then, suddenly, Nuland claimed that the timeline for the project is too long because Europe needs gas "now." Whatever the reasons given, they come across as an ill-disguised attempt at placating Turkey at the expense of Europe's energy security, and attempts to free itself of Russian energy dependency. The Biden administration is once again demonstrating how, unfortunately, it prefers to do business.

The European Union is finding it more than difficult to beat its dependence on Russian oil and gas, thereby, sadly, financing Russia's war effort. One alternative is the proposed EastMed pipeline, which would carry natural gas extracted from fields under the waters of Israel's and Cyprus's Exclusive Economic Zones, to Greece and from there to other European countries. Pictured: Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiadis (left), Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis (center) and then Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shake hands in Athens on January 2, 2020, ahead of signing the pipeline agreement. (Photo by Aris Messinis/AFP via Getty Images)

Russia is expected to make almost $321 billion from its energy exports this year -- over a third more, according to Bloomberg, than last year.

Twenty-seven European Union member states, despite adopting five packages of sanctions since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, have nevertheless spent at least around 35 billion euros -- around $38 billion -- in payments to Russia for its oil and gas since the invasion, according to the EU's foreign-policy chief, Josep Borrell.

The EU is finding it more than difficult to beat its dependence on Russian oil and gas, thereby, sadly, financing Russia's war effort. Thirty-six percent of Russia's revenues last year came from the sale of oil and gas. "Oil revenue makes up a large share of Moscow's budget. It is a key funding source for Putin's invasion of Ukraine. Slashing Russia's oil revenue could hasten an end to the conflict," American Enterprise Institute resident scholar Michael R. Strain recently wrote.

The EU as a whole, thus far, has only managed to agree on banning imports of Russian coal, which last year amounted to a mere €4 billion annually, a much smaller number than for oil and gas. Facing increasing pressure to stop importing Russian oil and gas as Russian war crimes continue to mount, Europe is frantically looking for energy alternatives, both short- and long-term.

There are, however, European countries that have already decided to stop importing Russian oil and gas. Lithuania recently did so; its president, Gitanas Nauseda, tweeted, "If we can do it, the rest of Europe can do it too." Poland also announced that it will end imports of Russian oil and gas by the end of this year.

On April 27, Russia declared that it was cutting gas to Poland and Bulgaria. Both countries had refused to pay for gas imports in Russian rubles, as Russia's President Vladimir Putin had demanded. Other countries may now also soon face a sudden cut-off of Russian gas deliveries. According to Edward Gardner of Capital Economics:

"President Putin's decree that gas payments made by 'unfriendly' countries must be denominated in rubles raises the risk that supply could be cut off to other European countries when payments are due in the next few weeks."

Germany's Chancellor Olaf Scholz warned that a disruption of Russian gas supplies could cause Germany to enter a recession. Germany, he said, must be prepared that it could be the next country to which Gazprom cuts gas deliveries. Europe, therefore, needs a multitude of alternatives to the Russian energy supply.

One of those alternatives is the proposed 1,900-kilometer EastMed pipeline, which would carry natural gas extracted from offshore gas fields under the waters of Israel's and Cyprus's Exclusive Economic Zones, to Greece and from there to Italy and other European countries. The pipeline was originally scheduled for completion by 2025, at an estimated cost of 6 billion euros, and is projected to have the initial capacity to transfer 10 billion cubic meters of natural gas a year. The pre-feasibility studies, conducted from 2015-18 and paid for by the European Union, found that the project was "technically feasible, economically viable and commercially competitive."

"The analysis conducted for the activity related to the economic, financial and competitiveness studies, evidenced that the [EastMed] Project contributes to the improvement of market integration of currently isolated countries such as Cyprus and some Greek regions, to the enhancement of energy security diversifying the supply sources for Europe and to the reduction of the EU-wide consumers' gas bill. Moreover, taking into account the need of additional net imports to satisfy EU gas demand by 2030 and the risk associated to the current production availability, procurement and transport of gas supply, the Project provides strategic contribution to the EU security of supply."

The EastMed pipeline project, therefore, went on to the next phase of the feasibility studies, which are still ongoing.

"Financial and political support by the EU can facilitate the final investment decision-making process by the private entities that are considering their participation in the project," Michalis Mathioulakis, an energy expert at the ELIAMEP think tank, said recently, adding that the significant rise in natural gas prices in Europe favors the economic viability of the pipeline.

It was all the more surprising, therefore, when in January, the United States, in a complete policy reversal, unofficially communicated to Israel, Greece and Cyprus that it no longer supported the pipeline. Then, on April 6, US Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland made it even clearer that the US was officially killing off the EastMed project. As the final feasibility report on the project is still underway, the US decision seemed to come out of the blue.

During a visit to Greece, Nuland said in an interview with the newspaper Kathimerini:

"We don't need to wait for 10 years and spend billions of dollars on this stuff. We need to move the gas now, And we need to use gas today as a transition to a greener future. Ten years from now we don't want a pipeline. Ten years from now we want to be green. So we've got to use LNG [liquefied natural gas] and we've got to use electricity connections that we can do more quickly."

Nuland's comments came across as remarkably tone-deaf at a time when the US has actively been seeking to lower oil prices worldwide by appealing to dictatorships such as Saudi Arabia to increase oil production and even courting Venezuela. If anything, oil is even less "green" than natural gas, and the projected time during which the EastMed pipeline can be built is probably not ten years, but significantly less. Furthermore, natural gas is likely to be relevant for decades to come. It is, to say the least, highly unlikely that there will be enough renewable energy to cover European energy needs within the next decade. Fossil fuels will most likely still be needed for the foreseeable future to manufacture those electric cars and fly those airplanes. The greatest beneficiaries of the US and the West closing down their energy industries will be Russia, Iran and other countries set to make a windfall selling their fossil fuels.

Nuland's comments appeared especially odd as, after meeting with her counterparts in Turkey on April 4, she told the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet that more pipelines were needed in the Eastern Mediterranean:

"There are lots of different kinds of opportunities in the eastern Meditteranean some involving Turkey's nearer neighbors, some involving new exploration and new pipelines, Nuland suggested."

"'So, we want to work with you on all of that, and we particularly want to help Turkey and its goal of diversifying away from Russian dependence,' she said."

The US, it appears, prefers to steer the business to Turkey's strongman, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, rather than to America's democratic allies, Cyprus, Israel and Greece.

What makes Nuland's comments appear even more hypocritical is that Secretary of State Antony Blinken, during his recent visit to Algeria, is thought to have urged Algeria to reopen a pipeline that used to carry Algerian natural gas through Moroccan territory to Spain, to help European countries reduce their energy dependence on Russia.

According to the Biden administration, therefore, pipelines that go via Turkey are apparently acceptable, Algerian gas pipelines are also acceptable, but the long-planned Israeli-Greek-Cypriot EastMed pipeline is not acceptable.

Members of the EastMed project, however, did not sit back and accept Nuland's remarks, which is perhaps also an indication of the Biden administration's reduced standing in parts of Europe.

"The EastMed [pipeline] is alive and kicking." Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said in response.

President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades said in response to Nuland's remarks:

"What we are waiting for is the final report which is financed by the EU. And I repeat, the position was from the start – and that is why the study is being carried out – if it is viable, if there are investors, if the seabed permits, then it will be carried out. The US government does not decide about a European project..."

"What everyone can see, and this is very important, is the need for the EU to cease being dependent on specific markets and the alternatives channels for natural gas to Europe and the closest is none other than the basin of the eastern Mediterranean."

Nick Larigakis, president of the American Hellenic Institute, a US-based lobbying organization that works to strengthen US-Greek and US-Cypriot relations, also found Nuland's remarks concerning:

"Energy cooperation is a critical component of the '3+1' mechanism between Greece, Cyprus, Israel, and the United States. However, it must not be up to one of the parties, the United States, to impose its own energy policy upon the parties, but rather, it should be up to the parties to arrive at an energy policy that best serves their collective interest. Under Secretary Nuland's contradictory messaging on Eastern Mediterranean pipeline projects, indicating her support and subsequent skepticism of such projects within the same week, is confusing and unhelpful. It gives the appearance of appeasement of Turkey."

Turkey has been opposed to the EastMed pipeline project all along. Back in January, when the Biden administration first announced its unofficial opposition to the project, the reasons given by the US were primarily environmental and financial. Then, suddenly, Nuland claimed that the timeline for the project is too long because Europe needs gas "now." Whatever the reasons given, they come across as an ill-disguised attempt at placating Turkey at the expense of Europe's energy security, and attempts to free itself of Russian energy dependency. The Biden administration is once again demonstrating how, unfortunately, it prefers to do business.

 

Judith Bergman, a columnist, lawyer and political analyst, is a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Gatestone Institute.

Source: https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/18509/eastmed-pipeline-awaits-approval

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Hamas On the Skids, Sinwar Puts On a Brave Face - Hugh Fitzgerald

 

by Hugh Fitzgerald

At the end of the day, every Palestinian understands that Hamas is headed nowhere

Many terror groups, with Hamas in the lead, have been inciting terror, and have praised the latest attacks on Israeli civilians, but none of them, including Hamas, has claimed credit for themselves. “Hamas is scared out of its wits,” by Eyal Zisser, JNS.org, May 8, 2022:

Some in Israel have described the events of the past month of Ramadan as “relatively quiet,” and expressed the hope that the upcoming “Nakba day,” when Palestinians commemorate the “catastrophe” of the establishment of the State of Israel, and “Naksa day,” when they mourn the Arab defeat in the 1967 Six-Day War, will be similarly “quiet.”

The description is unfortunate not only because 19 Israelis were killed in a series of terrorist attacks across the country in the past month, but because it reflects the Eastern European shtetl mentality, in which Jews lived in fear that their gentile neighbors might “mark” their holidays by inciting pogroms….

At the end of the day, every Palestinian understands that Hamas is headed nowhere — one look at Gaza is sufficient to understand this. The terrorist organization is in charge of the Gaza Strip, and the situation of the local population has never been worse, with very little hope of it improving in the foreseeable future.

In Gaza, economic conditions are terrible. Mismanagement and, especially, colossal corruption in Hamas have brought the economy to collapse. Just two Hamas leaders, Khaled Meshaal and Moussa bin Marzouk, have each managed to steal at least $2.5 billion. Six hundred Hamas millionaires, thieves on a lesser scale, live in villas in Gaza. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate in Gaza is 50%; the poor are understandably in a state of permanent rage against their Hamas rulers. 

The PA does not transfer any money to its arch-enemy Hamas. Some foreign donors in the past gave money to Hamas, but most have ended aid not just to Hamas, but also the Palestinian Authority. The EU has this year withheld all aid until the Palestinians remove the antisemitism from their schoolbooks, which the PA has yet to do. The rich Sunni Arabs have also halted almost all of their aid to the Palestinians. The UAE designated Hamas as a terrorist organization in 2021, and will have nothing more to do with it. The Saudis since 2020 have been arresting and sentencing to long prison terms Palestinian and Jordanian members of Hamas in the Kingdom, including such well-known figures as Dr. Muhammad al-Khudari, who received a 15-year sentence purely for his work with Hamas.

Hamas is trying to cause a flare-up in Judea and Samaria and among the Arab Israeli public because it fears a direct confrontation with the Israeli military on the Gaza border, for the State of Hamas will be the one to pay the price for any fighting in the strip. Hamas’s policy projects no sophistication or boldness, only weakness.

Even Yahya Sinwar’s attack on Islamist Ra’am party leader Mansour Abbas is proof that the Hamas chief and his associates fear that Abbas’s policy of integration into Israeli society is gaining popularity among Arab Israelis, and that many Palestinians would prefer Israeli citizenship if given the choice.

Mansour Abbas is the leading Arab Israeli politician, a Member of the Knesset and the head of the Arab Ra’am Party, who is dedicated to bringing tangible benefits to his Israeli Arab constituents. He’s long on accomplishments, short on angry rhetoric. He has won from the Israeli government more aid to combat the explosion of Arab-on-Arab crime, more money for schools, hospitals, and other infrastructure in Arab cities and neighborhoods. The results have been appreciated by his constituents, and Hamas is right to worry that more Arab Israelis are beginning to realize that they have far more to gain through Mansour Abbas’ old-fashioned politicking, of the bring-home-the-bacon kind that Tip O’Neill and Lyndon Johnson practiced, than through the endless warfare, corruption, misery, and defeat that is all Hamas has provided.

Now throughout Israel there have been calls for the targeted assassination of Yahya Sinwar, of the kind Israel undertook during the Second Intifada, as a way to further weaken Hamas. Sinwar is recognized as being an effective leader and inciter of terror. In response to Israeli MKs talking of the need to take him out, Hamas has threatened Israel. A report on Hamas’ threats is here: “Hamas vows suicide bombings, ‘unprecedented response’ if Israel targets its leaders,” Times of Israel, May 7, 2022:

…While Hamas has not taken responsibility for most of the attacks since March 22 that have left 19 people in Israel and the West Bank dead, Sinwar has repeatedly called for Palestinians to assault Israelis and the group has publicly praised the perpetrators, encouraging more attacks.

The terror group also claimed responsibility for an attack that killed a security officer guarding the West Bank settlement of Ariel on April 29.

According to Channel 12 news, diplomatic and security officials relayed a message to Sinwar that the Ariel attack, coupled with his messages championing terror, gave Israel freedom to respond militarily in Gaza.

The message also included a personal threat against Sinwar, whom Israel has termed a “terror supporter” who may be dealt with in kind.

The network reported that the message was sent to Sinwar before two Palestinian terrorists armed with a knife and axe attacked people in the central city of Elad Thursday night, killing three men and injuring seven others.

Hamas has now threatened to start up a campaign of suicide bombings beyond anything the Israelis can imagine if Sinwar is harmed. But these are the usual threats intended to terrify, but long ago lost their ability to frighten Israelis.

In the Jerusalem Post, meanwhile, Herb Keinon asserts that “there are no magic solutions, and that perspective is important these days amid calls to assassinate Hamas head Yahya Sinwar – as if that will be the determining blow that will finally put an end to Arab terror. It won’t.” Keinon adds:

Play the scenario through for a minute.

Let’s say Israel does kill Sinwar – by no means a simple task since all the chatter about resuming targeted assassinations has definitely driven him underground – then what happens?

The Palestinian terrorist organizations have threatened to respond to such a move by going on murderous sprees inside Israeli cities and launching rockets on Tel Aviv, and they should be taken at their word.

Israel will not be deterred by that terror, and would – in retaliation – pound Gaza. And if Palestinians in the West Bank joined the fray, or if Israeli Arabs did so as well, Israel would forcefully put that down as well. There would be Israeli casualties, but the Palestinians would suffer many more.

And at the end of the day, some new Hamas leader would replace Sinwar and again fulminate against Israel, issue various threats, thereby confusing the centuries, and believing that his threats of attacks would frighten the Jews into submission or lessen the resolve of those who live in the Jewish state. But it would not. As Shavit wrote, at the end of the day this only stiffens the people’s resolve….

Herb Keinon has set up a straw man: no one calling for the assassination of Sinwar thinks such a killing will “end terror.” What many Israelis, from the left-wing Meretz to the right-wing Kahanists, is that his constant incitement for Palestinians to engage in murder has been effective – there are 19 dead Israelis to prove it – and that he must be removed from the scene. There must be consequences to such incitement. Targeted assassinations can also discourage others from putting themselves in the same danger. After the killing of four nuclear scientists in Iran by the Mossad, quite a few Iranian nuclear scientists decided to take up teaching, or other careers that would not put a target on their backs. Sinwar’s successor will likely not be quite so enthusiastic about inciting terror. But should he be, then there is no reason why Israel cannot engage in rinse-repeat, as it takes out now this Hamas leader, and now that.

But what about those threats to set all of Israel ablaze with suicide bombings if Sinwar is assassinated? This is the usual bravado, equivalent to the frog that puffs himself up to scare away predators.

Elder of Ziyon has a funny riff on the scariest threat the Muslim Arabs have come up with, which is to “open the gates of hell” if the Israelis, or their friends, do something the Arabs don’t like:

Khaled Al-Batsh, member of Islamic Jihad’s “political bureau,” said, “The assassination of any of the leaders of the resistance, led by Commander Al-Sinwar, will open the gates of hell to the enemy.”

 Yawn.

2017 was the last time I listed some of the threats of Palestinians to open the gates of hell if Israel (or the US, or UNRWA) does something they don’t like. All of them have one thing in common: nothing happened.

And they have issued the same threat many times since then. Yet when those “gates of hell” were opened, did anything particularly worrisome happen? No. I don’t think the IDF, or the Shin Bet, or Mossad, are particularly worried about those gates of hell being opened.

Of course Israel should take action against Sinwar. He is directly inciting murders of Israelis, and is taking responsibility for inciting them. He needs to be punished. His successor needs to be scared.

 

Hugh Fitzgerald

Source: https://robertspencer.org/2022/05/hamas-on-the-skids-sinwar-puts-on-a-brave-face

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Can the Cold Peace Between Israel and Jordan Last? - Joseph Puder

 

by Joseph Puder

What the Ramadan violence at the Al-Aqsa Mosque means for the two countries.

 


Jordanian Prime Minister Bishar Khasawneh angered Israelis with his irresponsible statements in a session of the Jordanian Parliament last month (April 18, 2022). In an unusually hostile language for a high government official, he called Israel the “occupation government,” and Israelis, "Zionist sympathizers.” He said, "I salute every Palestinian, and all the employees of the Jordanian Waqf, who proudly stand like minarets, hurling stones in a volley of clay at the Zionist sympathizers defiling the Al-Aqsa Mosque under the protection of the Israeli occupation."

In his inflammatory address, al-Khasawneh encouraged the Palestinian rioters on Temple Mount, who in advance of the Islamic holiday of Ramadan gathered rocks and stored them in the holy sanctuary of the Al-Aqsa Mosque. They then threw rocks at Israeli buses en route to the Western Wall, as well as on Jewish worshippers below at the Western Wall. On Temple Mount, (al-Haram al-Sharif for Muslims) the Palestinians clashed with Israeli police who were trying to protect the Jewish worshippers below, at the Western Wall (also called the Kotel).

Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett was quick to respond to the Jordanian Prime Minister’s incitement. He stated, “The remarks accusing Israel of violence directed against us…there are those who are encouraging rock-throwing and the use of violence against the citizens of the State of Israel.” Bennett added, “This is unacceptable, this is a reward for inciters, especially Hamas, which is trying to ignite violence in Jerusalem. We will not allow it to happen.” 

Gideon Sa’ar, Israel’s Justice Minister, responding directly to the Jordanian PM remarks, tweeted that, “Statements made by senior officials in the Kingdom of Jordan are grave and unacceptable.” 

What seemed to be only days earlier as a winter honeymoon between senior Israeli officials and King Abdullah II of Jordan became a crisis of sorts during Ramadan. The relations between Amman and Jerusalem deteriorated sharply, with senior Jordanian officials competing among themselves as to which one would be more hostile to Israel.   

On March 29, 2022, Israel’s President Isaac Herzog, made the first ever Israeli state visit to Jordan, and he was received with “pomp and circumstance,” following 28-years of formal peace between Jordan and Israel. Herzog implored King Abdullah to help prevent Palestinian rioters from repeating the violence they unleashed the previous Ramadan.  

Israel’s PM Bennett, Foreign Minister Lapid, and Defense Minister Gantz also visited Jordan in recent months. All of them went with the message that called for strengthening ties between Jordan and Israel, which were on the cool side during former Prime Minister Netanyahu’s time in office.  

Jordan is much more dependent on Israel economically than the reverse. To help the strapped Jordanian economy, Israel permits Jordanians to work in Israel, and Israeli tourists in Jordan bring significant tourism revenue to the Kingdom. Israel provides water and gas to Jordan, and allows it to export goods to the West Bank. Hostility toward Israel comes from a major part of the Jordanian public, primarily from its Palestinian population, who comprise at least 60% of Jordan’s population. Queen Rania, King Abdullah II wife, is of Palestinian parentage as well. And yet, the Jordanian monarchy, while grappling with a beleaguered economy, influx of refugees from Iraq and Syria, and Islamist opponents has long recognized the value of its relationship with Israel, in a volatile region that is the Middle East.  

“Jordan is Palestine,” a slogan popularly attributed to Israel’s late Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, ignores the actual originator: King Abdullah I, the grandfather of the current King and namesake. After annexing the West Bank on April 24, 1950, he declared that there are no Palestinians or Palestine, and henceforth all are Jordanians. Arafat latched onto the same concept, but in the reverse. Twenty years later, he claimed Jordan as part of Palestine. Abdullah’s annexation of the West Bank was considered illegal by the international community, with only The United Kingdom and Pakistan approving it. 

Israel is committed to safeguard the territorial integrity of the monarchy, and in 1970, during the Black September bloodletting between Arafat’s Palestinian forces and King Hussein’s Jordanian army; Syrian tanks were poised to cross into Jordan to aid Arafat’s Palestinians. Israel sent a warning to Damascus, that should its forces cross into Jordan, Israel would bomb them. The Syrians withdrew, and Israel saved the day for King Hussein. Jordan serves as Israel’s strategic depth on its eastern frontier, and cooperation between Amman and Jerusalem is a key factor in the US defense strategy in the Middle East. 

The relationship between the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and Israel has seen many fluctuations, hence, the current “crisis” surrounding the Ramadan violence at the Al-Aqsa Mosque need not be too worrisome. Jordan is divided on Israel. On one hand there is the media, which feeds the populace with hostility toward Israel, along with Jordanian politicians who compete with each other on expressing their hate for Israel: together they have impacted on public opinion in the monarchy. On the other hand, there are the Jordanian security services and the army, who are the only partners Israel has in Jordan.   

King Abdullah II has maintained diplomatic and security ties with Israel throughout his 22-year reign, irrespective of who Israel’s head of government happens to be. Jordan has prioritized national interest over personality-based calculation. Abdullah is cognizant of his large Palestinian constituency, and having had a mother who was an English Christian woman who converted to Islam in order to marry his father – the late King Hussein, making him especially cautious about angering them. He is therefore unable to foster a warm peace with Israel. The US annual aid to Jordan in the amount of $1.5 billion is crucial to the Hashemite Kingdom, and it compels Abdullah and his ministers to keep Jordan’s relationship with Israel on a relatively continuous track. 

Jordan’s current Prime Minister al-Khasawneh seems to have a history of hostility toward Israel. He declined to accept the ambassadorship to Israel, and he wrote his doctoral thesis in 2007, as an appraisal of the right of return and compensation of Jordanian nationals of Palestinian refugee origins. Fortunately, it is Abdullah, not al-Khasawneh, who determines Jordan’s policy toward Israel. And while Israel’s peace with Jordan will likely remain cold, the security coordination between the two countries will continue to be vital and strong. One thing appears to be certain, should an Islamist revolution end the monarchy, Jordan will indeed become Palestine. 


Joseph Puder

Source: https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/2022/05/can-cold-peace-between-israel-and-jordan-last-joseph-puder/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Congresswoman Omar Poses for Photo with 'America is Run on Hate' Guy - Joe Kaufman

 

by Joe Kaufman

Imtiaz Mohammad cozies up to politicians, while belittling the US and its citizens.

 


Politicians take photos with a lot of people, and sometimes they wish they hadn’t. Given his statements belittling the US and her citizens, photos taken with Imtiaz Mohammad, founder of the American Muslim Progressive Caucus (AMPC), are probably ones that some office holders would wish they could take back. Yet, time and again, politicians smile and cozy up to him, lending themselves and their images to be shared on his social media. This was the case, when US Representative Ilhan Omar came to South Florida to speak at a CAIR event, and it has been the case for many others. Question: Do they agree with Mohammad’s contemptible views?

Imtiaz Ahmad Mohammad grew up in the Hyderabad area of Pakistan and arrived in the United States in 1991, first settling in New York, then Florida. Since coming to Florida, Mohammad has been involved in a number of ventures. He runs a plethora of South Florida beauty salons. In 2015, he incorporated and published a South Asian oriented monthly magazine, Pak Mag, which changed its name to Asian Times, in 2017, and which dissolved in 2018. He has also involved himself in the Democratic Party and different progressive causes, such as defunding police and abolishing ICE, and he had a couple of failed attempts at running for statewide office.

As well, Mohammad has attended and spoken at a number of events organized by the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), a group with several ties to South Asian extremism and which Mohammad calls “a humanitarian champion.” For 30-plus years, ICNA has harbored alleged death squad leader Ashrafuz Zaman Khan from the 1971 Bangladesh Genocide, and ICNA has promoted Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF), a banned front for Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT). ICNA has further sponsored anti-Israel events, including a July 2014 pro-Hamas rally in downtown Miami, where rally goers repeatedly chanted “We are Hamas” and “Let’s go Hamas.”

In January 2017, Mohammad was a contact for tickets to an ICNA benefit dinner, featuring Hamas operative Monzer Taleb and community activist/agitator Linda Sarsour, whom Mohammad calls “a remarkable American Muslim.” Taleb has notoriously sung songs threatening Jews, and in June 2019, he posted a message on Facebook that Jews in Israel “should be relocated to Germany.” Sarsour, whose own antisemitism has been widely reported, in September 2019, was forced to resign from her position as National Organizer and Co-Chair of the Women’s March, due to her alleged embrace of bigotry against Jews and LGBTQ.

In November 2018, Mohammad referred to former Muslim community leader Nezar Hamze as “an American Muslim hero.” For years, Hamze was a representative for the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and, not long ago, stepped down as Executive Director of the South Florida Muslim Federation (SFMF), an umbrella group for the vast majority of radical Muslim organizations throughout South Florida.

Indeed, Mohammad’s life in Florida has been a balancing act between participation in left wing politics and engagement with Islamists, two entities that, in recent years, have become dangerously close with one another. His AMPC seems to be an effort to combine both. Proof of this can be seen in a recent attack Mohammad hurled at his fellow Democrats. In March 2019, he posted on Facebook photos of US Representatives Ted Deutch and Debbie Wasserman Schultz, asking, “Are they representing all Americans or just one community?????” The post was an obvious bigoted reference to Deutch and Wasserman Schultz’s Jewish backgrounds.

In December 2018, Mohammad was featured on a panel discussion held at the Pembroke Pines-based Darul Uloom Institute (DUI), on the topic of ‘Religion and Politics in America.’ DUI is infamous for having been a haven for al-Qaeda operatives, including ‘Dirty Bomber’ Jose Padilla and al-Qaeda commander Adnan el-Shukrijumah, and DUI’s imam, Shafayat Mohamed, has been thrown off various county boards for his fiery rhetoric against homosexuals. During the discussion, (Imtiaz) Mohammad slammed America and her citizens, saying “America [is] run on hate” and “American people are the most uneducated nation in the world.”

Taking into account all of the above, it is a wonder that so many Democrat leaders have happily been photographed with Mohammad, yet so many have done so.

In October 2019, at a South Florida CAIR event, US Representative Ilhan Omar stood directly next to Mohammad, smiling for different shots. Mohammad has photos with US Representative Charlie Crist, late US Representative Alcee Hastings, Florida Senator Annette Taddeo, ex-Florida State Representative Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, former Florida Democratic Party Chair Terrie Rizzo, ex-Florida Democrat Gubernatorial Nominee Andrew Gillam, and even Deutch and Wasserman Schultz. One photo, from August 2018, has Mohammad arm-in-arm with Broward County Commissioner Jared Moskowitz, stating about Moskowitz, “I am proud of our friendship.”

Additionally, Mohammad appears to be very involved with former Mayor of Broward County Dale Holness, who is running for US Congress.

Why would all these notable and influential officials allow themselves to be photographed with such a toxic individual as Imtiaz Mohammad? Can they all claim ignorance or do they even care? In the case of Ilhan Omar, she has a record of making brutally controversial and derogatory statements about America and Jews, but these others do not have the same history. That said, their political party has worked hard to embrace radical Islam, so there is a good chance that some if not most of them embrace it as well, as evidenced by their uncritical acceptance and proxy legitimization of this documented Islamist.

It appears that identity politics and a wish to pander to Muslims, instead of principles and integrity, are the driving force behind many Democrat politicians’ obsequious courting of Mohammad. He and his anti-democratic ideology need to be condemned, not cozied up to.

Regardless, those in positions of power, if they do not wish to be a party to extremism and bigotry, should be more cautious about who they cavort with. Otherwise, they will wind up with someone like Imtiaz Mohammad’s picture next to theirs, implying a tacit endorsement of his/their hate-filled agenda.

Beila Rabinowitz, Director of Militant Islam Monitor, contributed to this report.

 

Joe Kaufman is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and the Chairman of the Joe Kaufman Security Initiative. He was the 2014, 2016 and 2018 Republican Nominee for U.S. House of Representatives (Florida-CD23).

Source:https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/2022/05/congresswoman-ilhan-omar-posed-photo-america-run-joe-kaufman/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter