02/10/16
Iran

Iran, North Korea and the Cruz Letter

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

The Keys to Iran’s Missiles are in China and North Korea

Iran space navigation system to be launched.

TEHRAN, Feb. 10 (MNA) – National plan to improve navigation and positioning services will soon become operational with special features.

Iran’s very modern system of navigation and positioning system has been produced by Iran Electronics Industries (IEI) as the executive and with the support of Iran’s National Space Center as one of the subordinate units of the Science and Technology Department of the Presidential Office.

The system aims to provide advanced services to increase life quality of Iranian people and will soon become operational providing the whole country with the possibility to simultaneously exploit three highly-advanced global positioning systems called GPS, GLONAA as well as BeiDou.

Numerous valuable services offered by the system with centimeter accuracy include car navigation, crisis management, social services, mapping, identification of stationary and moving targets, precision farming, urban traffic control, tracking oil and gas pipelines, environmental services, advanced housing and urban development services, customs issues and smuggling prevention, accurate harness of fire, current and advanced insurance services, shipping services and ports, fine weather forecast.

The implementation of the navigation and positioning system will be carried out in three phases in 2016.

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Sen. Cruz to President Obama: “Strategic Patience” Toward North Korea Isn’t Working

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) today sent a letter to President Barack Obama that expresses grave concerns about the administration’s North Korea policy and outlines alternative policy actions to address North Korea’s illegal nuclear tests, strengthen U.S. national security and return greater stability to East Asia and the Korean Peninsula.

Cruz sent the letter today after announcing he will vote for the North Korea Sanctions Enforcement Act of 2016 (H.R. 757), which would impose nuclear weapons-related sanctions on North Korea. The Senate is expected to pass the bill this evening.

“I write to express deep concern regarding [President Obama’s] policy of ‘strategic patience’ toward the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), particularly in light of their recent nuclear test and satellite launch that also served as a long-range ballistic missile test,” wrote Sen. Cruz. “Your administration has, for too long, hoped to achieve denuclearization through failed diplomacy and limited sanctions. The nuclear tests of May 2009, February 2013, and January 2016 suggest that ‘strategic patience’ with a country still officially at war with us is not working.”

Cruz’s letter to Obama lists five actions rooted in American strength that might actually modify the hostile and aggressive behavior of North Korea and its protectors:

1) Fully enforce U.S. laws. The U.S. needs to sharpen the choices for North Korea by raising the risk and cost for those who choose to violate laws and resolutions.

2) Stop protecting China. It is time to tell the truth about China: the PRC is not our partner in denuclearizing the Korean peninsula. Lax enforcement of U.S. laws have made China complacent in policing the illicit financing of regimes like North Korea and Iran, thus becoming complicit in their proliferation.

3) Rebuild the U.S. Navy. The U.S. must renew its commitment to force projection to protect our allies and deter our enemies.

4) Deploy a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) unit to better protect U.S. troops and critical targets in South Korea. This system is more capable than any ballistic missile system that South Korea has or will have for decades. And if the U.S. is serious about defending South Korea, we must openly confront China’s support for North Korea.

5) Relist North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism. North Korea’s cyber attack and accompanying threats of a “9/11-type attack” fulfill the legal definition of international terrorism – “violent acts or acts dangerous to human life that…appear to be intended to intimidate or coerce a civilian population” (18 U.S. Code § 2331).  Removal from the list has resulted in no improvement in the behavior of the DPRK, and we should end the dangerous fiction that they are not engaged in international terrorist activities.

The full letter can be viewed here and below.

February 10, 2016
President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President:

I write to express deep concern regarding your policy of “strategic patience” toward the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), particularly in light of their recent nuclear test and satellite launch that also served as a long-range ballistic missile test. Your administration has, for too long, hoped to achieve denuclearization through failed diplomacy and limited sanctions. The nuclear tests of May 2009, February 2013, and January 2016 suggest that “strategic patience” with a country still officially at war with us is not working.

I would like to propose five alternative actions rooted in American strength that might actually modify the hostile and aggressive behavior of the DPRK and its protectors:

1. Fully enforce U.S. laws. In September 2015, Secretary Kerry warned of “severe consequences” if North Korea “refuses to live up to its international obligations.”[1] It is well past time to impose those consequences. History demonstrates that the United States is able to dictate the agenda when dealing with hostile regimes and improve global security through our leadership. Unilateral U.S. actions against Iran, combined with diplomatic pressure, led other nations to impose their own financial and regulatory measures against Tehran. Collectively, the international sanctions isolated Iran from the international banking system, targeted critical Iranian economic sectors, and forced countries to restrict purchases of Iranian oil and gas, Tehran’s largest export.

The United States should use its actions against Iran as a model for imposing the same severity of targeted financial measures against North Korea. Washington should no longer hold some sanctions in abeyance, to be rolled out after the next North Korean violation or provocation. There will be little change until North Korea feels the full impact of sanctions and China feels concern over the consequences of Pyongyang’s actions and its own obstructionism. The U.S. needs to sharpen the choices for North Korea by raising the risk and cost for those who choose to violate laws and resolutions. Actors who have thus far been willing to facilitate North Korea’s prohibited programs and illicit activities should not be exempt for political convenience. If Congress passes additional sanctions in the coming days, my hope is that, in addition to signing them into law, you would faithfully and consistently execute such targeted measures in a non-discriminant manner.

2. Stop protecting China. It is time to tell the truth about China: the PRC is not our partner in denuclearizing the Korean peninsula. Lax enforcement of U.S. laws have made China complacent in policing the illicit financing of regimes like North Korea and Iran, thus becoming complicit in their proliferation. China has enabled DPRK arms shipments to Iran to travel unimpeded through Chinese ports[2] and airspace.[3] It has facilitated the shipment of chemical reagents and protective suits from North Korea to Syria.[4] It has allowed transfer of arms-related material to Syria.[5]

Perhaps the most egregious act was the Chinese transfer of transporter-erector-launchers (TELs) to North Korea in 2011. Upon receipt of these vehicles, North Korea modified them with the ability to launch the KN-08, an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of reaching the West Coast of the United States from a road-mobile launch platform. This capability poses a nuanced challenge to our ground-based interceptors deployed in Alaska and California. A subsequent report from the United Nations confirmed that Chinese entities were responsible for the sale of these vehicles.[6] On April 7, 2015, Admiral Bill Gortney, the Commander of North American Aerospace Defense Command, confirmed that the KN-08 was operational. Because of China, North Korea has a modern mobile missile launcher that increases its ability to threaten Alaska, Washington, Oregon, and California with a road-mobile nuclear strike.[7]

3. Rebuild the U.S. Navy.

The foundation of the United States’ ability to project power overseas is the aircraft carrier, and its supporting Carrier Strike Group. One would hope that your annual budget submission to Congress would reflect the centrality of the aircraft carrier to America’s defense of our national interests and our allies abroad, but sadly this is not the case. The USS Gerald Ford is over budget,[8] the second ship of the class remains behind schedule,[9] and our Navy has only 272 combatants.[10] The budget you submitted further exacerbates this problem by reducing shipbuilding funds an additional $1.75 billion, as our adversaries expand their presence at sea and increase aggressive rhetoric regarding territorial sea claims.

While Naval force projection has declined under your watch, Japan has invested heavily in its armed forces. Leading the effort to broaden the definition of “self-defense” and expand the military missions Japan would be willing to accept, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has prudently responded to the threat environment he faces in East Asia. In contrast to your administration, the Japanese government increased defense spending by 2.8% to $42 billion in 2015, which amounted to the largest defense budget in Japan’s history.[11] Your administration has celebrated our ally’s commitment to stability in the region, but I/we fear that your unwillingness to fully fund America’s military to meet its threats will render moot the courageous actions of our friend and ally Japan. The U.S. must renew its commitment to force projection to protect our allies and deter our enemies.

4. Deploy THAAD in South Korea. Last year, your administration approached Seoul with the prospect of deploying a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) unit to better protect U.S. troops and critical targets in South Korea. This system is more capable than any ballistic missile system that South Korea has or will have for decades. The THAAD deployment is wholly in line with China’s stated goal of preserving stability on the Korean peninsula and would not in any way constrain China’s military capabilities. Yet, the PRC reacted aggressively to this prospective deployment. In July 2014, President Xi Jinping warned President Park Geun-hye to “tread carefully”[12] regarding THAAD so it “won’t be a problem between South Korea and China.”[13] Beijing has issued similar warnings after Seoul began publicly discussing the need to improve its missile defenses after last month’s North Korean nuclear test.

I welcome recent progress this week in negotiations with South Korea on THAAD. However, I am concerned that you have not publicly condemned Xi Jinping for attempting to intimidate and blackmail a U.S. ally into rejecting our military assistance. It would be unfortunate if the climate agreement and progressing trade negotiations with the PRC were higher strategic priorities for the United States than standing up to the world’s largest communist state. If the U.S. is serious about defending South Korea, we must openly confront China’s support for North Korea. The U.S. should strongly push back against China’s opposition to THAAD by rebutting its false assertions that the system would impact Chinese security.

A good place to start would be disinviting them from Rim of the Pacific Exercise (RIMPAC) 2016. While speaking in Jakarta on March 20, 2013, you linked participation in these exercises with political engagement: “We have invited the Chinese to participate in the RIMPAC exercise which we host, and we are delighted that they have accepted.  We seek to strengthen and grow our military-to-military relationship with China, which matches and follows our growing political and economic relationship.”[14] Given China’s complicity in North Korea’s nuclear capability, stonewalling of missile defense in South Korea, and its aggressive actions in the South China Sea, I/we believe it is time for the United States to fundamentally reevaluate U.S.-China relations.

5. Relist North Korea as a State Sponsor of Terrorism. One need not look far for justification. North Korea’s cyber attack and accompanying threats of a “9/11-type attack” fulfill the legal definition of international terrorism – “violent acts or acts dangerous to human life that…appear to be intended to intimidate or coerce a civilian population” (18 U.S. Code § 2331).  Removal from the list has resulted in no improvement in the behavior of the DPRK, and we should end the dangerous fiction that they are not engaged in international terrorist activities.

The regime in Pyongyang has not only issued explicit threats against American citizens, but there is also documented evidence that North Korea has shipped arms to Iran. Three intercepted vessels bound for Iran in July 2009 contained North Korean weapons that Western intelligence and Israeli intelligence officials and non-government experts believe were bound for Hezbollah and Hamas.[15] All three ships contained North Korean components for 122 mm Grad rockets and rocket launchers, 2,030 corresponding detonators, and related electric circuits and solid fuel propellant. As you know, Hezbollah and Hamas frequently fire these rockets into Israel. Yet your Administration continues to assert that North Korea is “not known to have sponsored any terrorist acts since the bombing of a Korean Airlines flight in 1987.”[16]

Until such actions are taken, the North Korean threat will continue to metastasize. Their launch last Saturday is further evidence of the escalating danger the DPRK poses to the U.S. and our allies. America must once again lead from a position of strength, rekindling the fear of our enemies and restoring the trust of our friends.

Sincerely,

Ted Cruz

[1] Secretary Kerry, Press Availability With South African Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, September 16, 2015.

[2] Report of the Panel of Experts established pursuant to resolution 1874 (2009),  United Nations, June 11, 2013 (p. 31),http://www.securitycouncilreport.org/atf/cf/%7B65BFCF9B-6D27-4E9C-8CD3-CF6E4FF96FF9%7D/s_2013_337.pdf.

[3] Ibid (pp. 33-34).

[4] Report of the Panel of Experts established pursuant to resolution 1874 (2009), United Nations, June 14, 2012 (pp. 27-29),http://www.securitycouncilreport.org/atf/cf/%7B65BFCF9B-6D27-4E9C-8CD3-CF6E4FF96FF9%7D/NKorea%20S%202012%20422.pdf.

[5] Report of the Panel of Experts established pursuant to resolution 1874 (2009),  United Nations, June 11, 2013 (pp. 36-38),http://www.securitycouncilreport.org/atf/cf/%7B65BFCF9B-6D27-4E9C-8CD3-CF6E4FF96FF9%7D/s_2013_337.pdf.

[6] Report of the Panel of Experts established pursuant to resolution 1874 (2009),  United Nations, June 11, 2013 (pp. 26-28),http://www.securitycouncilreport.org/atf/cf/%7B65BFCF9B-6D27-4E9C-8CD3-CF6E4FF96FF9%7D/s_2013_337.pdf.

[7] Bill Gertz, “Admiral: North Korea Can Hit U.S. With Long-Range Nuclear Missile,” Washington Free Beacon, October 12, 2015,http://freebeacon.com/national-security/admiral-north-korea-can-hit-u-s-with-long-range-nuclear-missile/.

[8] Christian Davenport, “New Gerald R. Ford carrier class, as predicted, called $13 billion ‘debacle,’” Stars and Stripes, October 1, 2015,http://www.stripes.com/news/navy/new-gerald-r-ford-carrier-class-as-predicted-called-13-billion-debacle-1.371389.

[9] Ibid.

[10] Status of the Navy, as of February 9, 2016,http://www.navy.mil/navydata/nav_legacy.asp?id=146.

[11] Ankit Panda, “Japan Approves Largest-Ever Defense Budget,” The Diplomat, January 14, 2015,http://thediplomat.com/2015/01/japan-approves-largest-ever-defense-budget/.

[12] Yonhap, “China’s Xi Asked Park to ‘Tread Carefully’ over U.S. Missile-Defense System,” August 26, 2014,http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/national/2014/08/26/73/0301000000AEN20140826002100315F.html.

[13] Chang Se-jeong and Ser Myo-ja, “Xi Pressed Park on Thaad System,” Korea JoongAng Daily, February 6, 2015,http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/news/article/article.aspx?aid=3000595

[14] Ashton Carter, “The U.S. Defense Rebalance to Asia,” Remarks as prepared for delivery, April 8, 2013,http://archive.defense.gov/Speeches/Speech.aspx?SpeechID=1765.

[15] Manyin, Mark, “North Korea: Back on the State Sponsors of Terrorism List?” CRS, January 21, 2015,http://www.crs.gov/Reports/R43865?source=search&guid=738771c7105c426fac0c7ad3efa85187&index=4.

[16] “Country Reports on Terrorism 2012,” Department of State, May 30, 2013,http://www.state.gov/j/ct/rls/crt/2012/209980.htm.

In the first phase, a total of 15 network stations and two data centers will be launched in Tehran as an experiment to collect accurate position information.

After the implementation of the first phase in Tehran, the second phase of the project will be implemented in major cities while the third phase the whole country will be covered by the system.

The hardware of the system is supposed to be available to users who will only be charged for a very low annual cost.

02/8/16
Dearborn

Dodging Bullets in Dearbornistan

By: Merrill McCarthy

“If I Can’t Do Jihad in the Middle East,
I Would Do My Jihad Over Here.”
Dearborn

We have a troubling story over here in Dearborn Heights, Michigan about a young man who planned to wage violent jihad against a church close to his work in Detroit.

Dearborn1

He thought the church would be a good choice because it was a gun-free zone and target-rich with capacity for 6,000 congregants. The would-be-shooter’s plot was not carried out because his father found and confiscated the jihad kit in his car consisting of a gun, ammo and a mask. Thwarted in his initial plan to terrorize the citizens of Michigan and the world, he told an FBI undercover agent about wanting to use a knife or a sword to achieve his “dream of beheading someone”.

For months, twenty-one-year-old Khalil Abu-Rayyan, self-proclaimed Palestinian Muslim, has been peppering social media with violent and hateful speech, threatening jihad. The FBI tuned in and an undercover agent learned of the violence contemplated by this young man who wanted to go “Sahwat” hunting, a term for an Iraqi who opposes ISIL. An arrest was made before he was able to put his plans into action and he is currently in detention.

An audio clip of the arraignment reveals a well-spoken young man with no trace of a foreign accent. He was probably born here or has lived here most of his life. And yet, it appears his allegiance is not with the USA, but with an Islamist terrorist organization based in the Middle East.

Think about the lack of assimilation and what it means. This young man of fighting age could not make it overseas to wage jihad so he settled for doing it here:

“If I can’t do jihad in the Middle East, I would do my jihad over here.”

He settled for a proxy target; a church having no ties to his enemies in the Middle East.

While we have many unanswered questions, the two that seem to be at the forefront are:

1) Why would someone who has lived in the USA for a lifetime, like the San Bernardino shooter, or this young man take up arms against innocent countrymen who have no ties to ISIL?

2) Why would the parents of an obviously dangerous young man fail to turn him over to the authorities when they had first-hand knowledge of intended criminal acts, much like the blind eyes turned to the bomb factory in San Bernardino?

Maybe there is something about the culture of these enclaved communities that do not resemble the America we know.

Dearborn2

Places like Dearborn could be picked up and set down in the Middle East without skipping a beat. The signs on the stores are in Arabic, the food is Arabic and the language is Arabic. The ideology on-the-street is largely Sharia. (51% of US Muslims want the option of living here under Sharia)

Dearborn3

A few months ago a man having a business breakfast in Dearborn overheard a quartet of retiree age men at a nearby table discussing world affairs. Since this man speaks Arabic, he understood the whole conversation and it was not pro-American. In fact, one of the men at the table went as far as saying that he wished he had the courage to strap on a suicide vest himself, and that perhaps if he were ever given a terminal cancer diagnosis he might just do it. Incredible! These are suicidal and murderous ideations. If a psychiatrist had heard them he would have been required to notify authorities about the outward threat and then would have to admit the man to a residential treatment hospital for protection because of suicidal thoughts.

And yet, this is coffee shop conversation in an enclaved city where Sharia Law is observed in many ways and Christians are stoned for sharing the gospel on a public sidewalk.

Dearborn4

In Dearborn, a father can find a gun, ammo and a mask in his son’s car and think that taking the items away from him will solve the problem, or a family in San Bernardino can overlook a bomb-making operation in their son’s kitchen and a neighbor can decide reporting very suspicious behavior would be riskier that having people possibly injured as a result of that suspicious behavior.

These “lone wolf” attackers, inspired by social media seem to be on the rise. Pretty soon we will run out of enough FBI agents to monitor what is going on. More attacks will not be a surprise. We might as well expect them. We need to have better ways to identify and defuse them. Thanks to the FBI, we have dodged bullets on this one, but maybe the next time we will not be so lucky.

We need more help from the families and the communities of these young jihadi “wannabes” because the signs are always there. It is not enough to take away the weapons when you find them. The authorities must be notified and if not, the culpable families may need to assume civil and criminal responsibility for looking the other way when tragedy could have been prevented.

The community needs to step up as well. These “lone wolf” attackers are always presented as a shock to their neighbors, although that message is changing. In the San Bernardino shooting, as well as this one that was nipped in the bud, the initial public statements have been made by the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Trial, the biggest terrorism financing prosecution in American history. CAIR has been identified as a front group for the Muslim Brotherhood which has been condemned as a terrorist organization by the UK and several Middle Eastern countries.

So far, the message from CAIR on this case is that “we should not rush to judgment,” but actually their early appearance on the scene is a dog whistle to anyone else who may be contacted for a quote to defer to the CAIR spokesperson who will have the official spin – beware of Islamophobia.

Dearborn5

Dawud Walid – Executive Director, CAIR Michigan

CAIR is not interested in the truth. If an imam is radicalizing young men in Dearborn or elsewhere, we will not hear about it from CAIR. What we will hear is CAIR on the offense with claims of Islamophobia if people start asking too many questions or veer off the politically correct pathway. CAIR will not assist in getting to the truth and in the past have urged people to not cooperate with the FBI unless absolutely necessary.

The greater question here is about our flawed immigration policy, especially the Refugee Resettlement program. Why continue to bring people here who do not want to assimilate and are instead bringing the Middle East conflict here to be fought on our soil? The church full of worshippers Abu-Rayyan wanted to shoot-up was not his enemy, just an unfortunate casualty of his misguided ideological world view and the policy of flooding America with people who hate us.

It is correct for us to be concerned about bringing in unvettable Syrians or others who may be terrorists with fake passports. But we must also start finding ways to vet people who we have already brought in to our country. We must understand the ideology that guides their actions and recognize that they may be no more than economic migrants who have no allegiance to the USA at all, or worse, Islamists pursuing a world without non-Muslims.

We must be more realistic about projecting our patriotic values. We cannot assume we all share the same world view. Every day we learn more to prove we don’t.

02/6/16
Wild Bill

What Islam Fears

02/5/16
Ted Cruz

The Council Has Spoken!! Our Watcher’s Council Results – 02/05/16

The Watcher’s Council

Ted Cruz

Unsavory Agents

MR

MR1

The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.

Treason doth never prosper, what’s the reason? For if it prosper, none dare call it Treason. – John Harrington

Those who believe, and adopt exile, and fight for the Faith, in the cause of Allah as well as those who give (them) asylum and aid, – these are (all) in very truth the Believers: for them is the forgiveness of sins and a provision most generous. – Qu’ran, Surah Al-Anfal, 74

The future must not belong to those who slander the Prophet of Islam. – President Barack Hussein Obama

http://i2.wp.com/2.bp.blogspot.com/--bd_Q_iBJfY/TsYx44QOX9I/AAAAAAAAAm8/QonbRkHSjmw/s400/Noisy%2Broom%2B2.jpg?w=540

This week’s winning essay, The Noisy Room’s Why Is Small Town America Being Inundated With Muslim Immigrants?, is her incisive look at yet another way President Obama is changing America… by flooding heartland America with Muslims from countries where the vast majority of the inhabitants have values and a culture totally inimical to our Constitution as well as our notions of freedom, tolerance and human liberty. Here’s a slice:

Looks like my old stomping grounds in Montana are heating up. People there are not taking Obama’s plan to force refugees on them lying down. There was a protest in Missoula, Montana at 10 a.m. this morning over that very issue. It is just one of many battles brewing out there in small town America.

Small towns in the sparsely populated parts of America are the perfect place to relocate these refugees. Especially, if your agenda includes politically terraforming the country. The West is historically conservative in their politics. Many are Republicans and Libertarians. Even the Democrats hearken back to an earlier time when they were more conservative in nature. Obama and the Democrats can’t have that. They need to have an entire country willing to submit to Marxist diktats. They need areas seeded with those who will vote Democrat and ensure that they stay in power no matter what.

And it’s not just voting demographics that are pushing this move either. I personally believe that there is a warped logic to all of this. That if Islam can be made the predominant religion in America, people will be more easily controlled. That’s insane of course and won’t work, but there you have it. Instead, Shariah law will be implemented and you will see the same atrocities occurring in Europe happen here. The big difference being, that at least for now, Americans are armed and will use those weapons to protect their neighbors, loved ones and country.

Bringing in the refugees also moves forward the Cloward and Piven strategy to overwhelm the system so it will collapse and cause chaos in the streets. These people want to tear the system apart, so they can replace it with something truly heinous. The Obama administration will never admit that this is the plan, but can you honestly look at what is going on today and tell me it isn’t? Our borders are wide open. We are not vetting anyone to speak of and security here in the US is worse than before 9/11.

Refugees1

Communities in states such as Idaho, Montana, North Dakota and Kansas are being infused with Muslim refugees even though they are not wanted by the residents or the local law enforcement. The feds and their leaders are not giving them a choice. Wyoming is the only state currently not participating in the program, but even the governor there wants to jump in it. Living in large cities would be too costly for the refugees and more can be accomplished with seeding them across the plains. In a small town, they can turn everything to their advantage in short order. Since many of our larger cities are already flooded with immigrants from south of the border and from Muslim nations, in many respects they have at least partially fallen to the ploy already. This is the fundamental transformation of America in play. South Carolina, Idaho, Minnesota, North Dakota and Michigan are vigorously fighting against this program and Obama’s ‘change’.

The same entitlements, jobs, lodging and freebies will be given to these refugees in small town America. But that will mean taking more and more away from locals in these same communities. These immigrants bring crime and disease with them. As crime rises, people will leave which will hasten the take over of these towns. At least that is what Obama and his friends hope for. I pray that people dig in and decide to stay and fight if they can.

Which brings me back to Missoula where they had a protest this morning in front of the county courthouse. Refugees are being brought into Helena and Missoula and the people there don’t want them. We’re talking about hundreds of Muslims. Other rallies in Twin Falls, Idaho and Fargo, North Dakota are planned as well. I have friends in Idaho that just won’t stand for this invasion.

It’s the same old story here. NGOs with lots of money and a pro-immigrant agenda are seeking out politicians who can be bought basically, or that can be forced into compliance one way or the other. These individuals, such as Sand Point, Idaho, Mayor Shelby Rognstad, conspire against their constituency until they are forced by the people to back down. The politicians in Missoula seem to have sold out to this movement. Oh, what I wouldn’t give to find out what each of them was offered in exchange for their support in resettling large number of Islamic refugees in their areas.

More at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was Tucker Carlson in Politico Magazine with Donald Trump Is Shocking, Vulgar and Right, submitted by The Noisy Room.

Donald Trump has his detractors, but no one can deny that he has struck a chord among many Americans. Tucker Carlson does a wonderful job of exploring why that is, attracting the deranged hatred of some of Politico’s rabid leftists.

Here are this week’s full results:

Council Winners:

Non-Council Winners:

See you next week!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum and every Tuesday morning, when we reveal the week’s nominees for Weasel of the Week!

And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere and you won’t want to miss it… or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

02/4/16
Hillary Clinton

Our Watcher’s Council Nominations – Catchin’ Up Edition

The Watcher’s Council

http://i2.wp.com/voterightga.org/Hillary2016_Past.jpg?resize=500%2C300

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

Council Alumni and all around great guy Michael Haltman at The Political Commentator is involved with the Heroes to Heroes Foundation, a group of former vets that helps U.S. combat veterans suffering with PTSD, jobs, housing, adjusting to civilian life and TBI. Thia was the group that was featured on Donald Trump’s rally for veterans in Iowa that raised $6 million dollars for Heroes To Heroes and other similar groups and whose Honor ring The Donald now wears. Please read his article on the group entitled ‘22 Veterans A Day In The United States Commit Suicide!’ and remember… these men and women went above and beyond for us, regardless of what you think of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The disgusting scandals in the Obama VA have meant that a lot of them have fallen through the cracks. At his rally, Donald Trump made the scathing, but accurate, comment that the Obama Administration treats illegal migrants better than it does many of our veterans.

I’ve checked this group out and they’re totally legitimate. Click on the above link and do what you can.

So, let’s see what we have for you this week…

Council Submissions:

Non-Council Submissions:

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that! And don’t forget to tune in Friday for the results!

02/3/16
Islam2

Resisting blasphemy laws in Egypt: Islam against Islam

By: Ashraf Ramelah | Voice of the Copts

Islam Buhiery

Islam Buhiery

Egypt’s deep state is a bureaucratic theocracy. This network forms the infrastructure of the official government. It is accountable to the doctrines put forth by the powerful Islamic clerics of Al-Ahzar Institute. The religion of Islam, when merged with the state, can better exert Allah’s powerful hold over the individual. Only then can it fulfill its destiny. While controlling Egypt, Islam’s elite, in turn, have control over its whole world of believers. Their race for world domination begins in Egypt.

Brave Egyptians resisting the system and exposing ideological underpinnings will eventually erode Islam’s backward concepts and entwinement with the state. It can rob power from religionists and lead to the release of followers around the world. Believers can then be inspired to replace blind obedience and fear with individual thinking, free will and assimilation into Western societies – a hopeful scenario.

Dr. Islam Buheiry is one example of only a handful like him around the world. An iconoclast, Dr. Islam Buheiry, evolved out of the climate of dissent that delivered Al-Sisi, the military general, to lead Egyptians out of the Arab Spring. He is an Egyptian intellectual living in Cairo specializing in the study and renewal of Islam for modern times. He spoke out against the religious establishment’s exploitation of ancient texts. He analyzed interpretations by Islam’s top historians and teachers past and present. For this he risked his life. Last month he began a one year prison sentence (often a penalty worse than death) for his offensive opinions. Dr. Islam Buheiry – speaking about Islam in the Egyptian state-sponsored media – is a hero at a time when the West is afraid to even name or discuss Islamic terrorism.

Educated in Britian, Buheiry headed the Islamic Studies Center Foundation at Cairo’s Al Youm Al Sabeh newspaper, a position created just for him, but he went far beyond his role. His research led the way for Islam’s religious enlightenment, which entailed new explanations and revision of sanctified Islamic texts. He was careful to focus on sacred writings (Seerah and Hadethes) outside the Koran or Koranic verses believed to be sealed in heaven. Despite his politically correct approach, he dared to contradict Al-Ahzar Sunni doctrine – interpreted Islamic texts used to manage Muslim followers around the world.

It all started a few years back when Buheiry began a national television program called “With Islam” to examine Muslim Brotherhood (MB) ideology, the strictest version of Islamic Sunni theology. As the Arab Spring Egyptians fought against tyranny, Buheiry questioned bizarre and dangerous “fatwas” — edicts issued by imams justifying MB takeover and Sharia law. None of Buheiry’s religious opponents could find arguments to silence him. In general, religious legalists refuse to engage in open and honest debate where violence has been the acceptable answer. Buheiry rose up in the face of what he knew about the fate of Dr. Faraj Fuda before him, a freethinker who spoke publicly about Islam and was assassinated through edict during the Mubarak regime. In fact, Dr. Islam Buheiry considered Dr. Fuda his teacher.

When Buheiry exposed the religion for its inherent radicalism, he entered into a collision course with the deep state — a stronghold of backward, intolerant state officials, prosecutors and judiciary allying with Al-Azhar religious dictates. Egypt’s legal system dating from the 19th century French occupation has been under siege by Islamic clerics since 1971. The Second Amendment of Egypt’s constitution subjugates all matters to a final ruling by religious scholars and contradicts the remainder of the constitution’s text, which is steeped in the language of freedom and human rights.

The crime of blasphemy, now gaining influence in the West (U.S. H. Res. 569,https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-resolution/569/text), pertains broadly to mentioning, questioning, analyzing, or criticizing the religion of Islam. Egyptians now have a leader and an advocate for the cause to rid Egypt and the world of archaic, draconian laws and severe, inhumane punishments. In only two years’ time, Egypt’s “reformist” president has not only accomplished much to end terrorism but has begun to chip away at the foundations and the system that produces it worldwide.

He did the obvious first. He banned the Muslim Brotherhood organization, removed its members from key government positions, and sent the military to the Gaza border as well as Libya to fight terror. Meanwhile, he addressed the deeper layer; the machine that continues to generate the ideological basis for terror. Like fellow dissidents, Buheiry and Fuda before him, the President puts his life in jeopardy.

When Al-Sisi requested a referendum back in 2013 from the people to fight terrorism, more than 10 million citizens gathered in Tahrir Square to answer yes. Today with this mandate, Al-Sisi has approached Islam’s “doctrinal command center” (Al-Ahzar Institute) to encourage an enlightened transformation of the Islamic message. He has given speeches to Al-Ahzar scholars for the explicit purpose of inviting peace and equality with other faiths in the country. His reasoning has extended to the immense Islamic propaganda network within Egypt spreading through early education textbooks, and he set out to rewrite and eradicate religious brainwashing.

During his tenure, Al-Sisi has made two unprecedented visits to the Orthodox Church during the holiest of times, which Coptic Christians take as genuine outreaches for the promise of equality and religious freedom. With this, he committed the state to rebuild 87 destroyed churches resulting from the most recent Islamic attacks. Importantly, he opened up parliamentary elections to Christian candidates for the first time ever in Egypt, which have only ever been token appointments in the past selected from this minority. All of this makes him dangerous to the establishment.
Al-Sisi’s industriousness is historic. This is anti-Islamic and, in itself, represents a culture clash. It took his government just six months to complete a Suez Canal expansion project, which has proven to Egyptians he means to do what he promises. Like Dr. Buheiry and Dr. Fuda, Al-Sisi, the president, is a true hero and role model. If he were to publicly pardon Dr. Buheiry and memorialize Dr. Fuda for their brave work in this common cause, it would strengthen and build momentum for the progress forged so far in Egypt.

02/2/16
Iran Medals

Iran Continues Mocking and Humiliating American Leaders

By: Roger Aronoff
Accuracy in Media

The New York Times continues to misrepresent the Iran deal as a signed document with the potential to motivate moderate Iranians to reform their totalitarian regime. However, it is more than obvious that the P5+1 did not actually sign a deal with Iran, and that this unsigned agreement cannot bring about change in that country.

Instead, the deal has emboldened those who hold the reins of power in Iran. On January 28, the Times’ editorial board lamented that “Next month’s elections in Iran do not bode well for Iranians eager for more political and social freedoms or for the promising new relationship with the West symbolized by the recent deal limiting Iran’s nuclear program.”

“Even before any ballots are cast,” they argue, “the death-to-America hard-liners who bitterly opposed the deal are stacking the deck against moderates led by President Hassan Rouhani, who signed the agreement and is more open than others in the power structure to further engagement with Western nations as well as expanding rights and freedoms for Iranian citizens.”

The inaccuracies contained within these few lines are too many to count. Iran is not interested in engaging with Western nations, other than for business purposes, nor is it interested in expanding the rights of its citizens. Also, even Iranians abroad do not support President Rouhani. When Rouhani recently came to France, thousands of Iranians and others took to the streets to demonstrate against him and his “façade of moderation,” according to CNS News.

As we have reported, the nuclear agreement has not actually been signed. In aletter from the State Department, Julia Frifield stated that “The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is not a treaty or an executive agreement, and is not a signed document.” Rather, the Iranian “deal” is just a set of political obligations which Iran can interpret in whatever way it wants.

How exactly can the mainstream media keep perpetuating this falsehood about a signed deal in their news reports? It is because members of the mainstream media have championed, and will continue to champion, this deal at any cost as long as it is considered part of President Obama’s foreign policy legacy. Such reporters will likely attribute any visible sign of a supposedly reformed Iran to Obama’s diplomacy rather than to internal forces. Reductions in freedom will undoubtedly be attributed to hard-liner resistance.

“So much for the nuclear deal’s promise of empowering Iranian reformers,”commented The Wall Street Journal on January 26. The recent “purge of candidates betrayed an especially hard-line approach,” it writes.

However, if President Rouhani is a force for moderation, as the Times’ editorial board contends, then why has he overseen more than 2,000 executions during his tenure? Iran performs more executions than any nation except for China. And that doesn’t even begin to describe the human rights abuses that are rampant in Iran, particularly towards women and children. This Gatestone article describes those conditions under the “moderate” Rouhani regime.

“Executions, however, skyrocketed under both [former President Mohammad] Khatami and now Rouhani relative to the capital punishment rates under their respective predecessors,” argues the American Enterprise Institute’s Michael Rubin in an opinion piece posted by Newsweek titled, “There Are No Iranian Moderates.” “…Americans continue to wallow under the delusion that factions are hooks upon which to hang American policy,” he argues.

The truth is that there are no Iranian moderates in power, and those reformers that the West might champion wield little to no power.

Rubin sees Rouhani’s struggles as a façade, a ruse to “project an image of moderation to relieve pressure.” He argues that Rouhani was elected for the sole purpose of overcoming Iran’s financial woes.

Now that Implementation Day has come and gone, President Rouhani is free to court French and Italian businesses, which recently signed deals valued in the tens of billions.

“It seems quite evident that the nuclear agreement has given the regime added motivation to crack down on Iranian civil society, become more belligerent in the region, and keep Western influence at bay,” argues Italy’s former foreign minister, Giulio Maria Terzi. While Terzi calls a moderate Iran a “fantasy,” he still calls for Western business deals that require Iran to engage in reform.

But even The New York Times editorial board casts Rouhani as “a creature of Iran’s establishment, not a revolutionary” who “has tapped into widespread popular support for ending the country’s long isolation.” It seems unclear what element, exactly, in Iran wanted to continue that isolation.

While the media and the Obama administration continue to hold to a non-existent agreement which does little to hold the regime accountable, Iran has become emboldened both in business and militarily. Not only did the Iranians film American sailors at gunpoint, on January 12 the Iranians flew an unarmed drone over the USS Harry Truman while this carrier was sailing in international waters. The United States did not shoot down the drone. Instead, President Obama allowed Iran to claim another propaganda victory, with Iranian naval commander Adm. Habibollah Sayyari claiming that it was an act of Iranian “bravery” to surveil U.S. forces.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei further humiliated the Obama administration when he awarded medals to the five commanders of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) who had seized two American Navy vessels and held 10 American sailors at gunpoint, claiming they had trespassed into Iranian waters. Khamenei told his commanders, while awarding them medals, that the capture of these sailors “was in fact an act of God, who brought the Americans into our waters so they would be arrested with their hands on their heads through your timely measure.” Whether they had trespassed or not, the Iranian action was illegal, and the Americans should never have allowed them on board the vessels,according to Retired Admiral James “Ace” Lyons.

Iran is very pleased, having just acknowledged receiving more than $100 billion of formerly frozen overseas assets through sanctions relief, contradicting the recent comments of Secretary of State John Kerry. Kerry has acknowledged that some of that money would be going to the IRGC, labeled by his own State Department as a terrorist organization, but he claimed that they weren’t getting $100 billion, and he didn’t know where that figure came from. He assured us it was more like $55 billion that they would be receiving. He said $100 billion was a “fictional number.”

But don’t look for the media to hold Kerry accountable. They, like the Obama administration, are still determined to convince us what a great deal this is, and how it has saved us from Iran developing nuclear weapons. Liberal news organizations are expecting this disastrous, unsigned agreement with Iran to prompt concrete changes in that nation. But President Obama’s legacy will likely be a nuclear arms race in the Middle East, with Iran, the largest state sponsor of terrorism, empowered and enabled to expand its destructive impact.

01/30/16
Iowa Caucu3

The Council Has Spoken!! Our Watcher’s Council Results – Iowa Caucus Edition

The Watcher’s Council

Iowa Caucu3

Iowa Caucus1

Iowa Caucus

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The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.

I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. – President James Madison

A republic, if you can keep it. – Benjamin Franklin

Man’s capacity for justice makes democracy possible, but man’s inclination to injustice makes democracy necessary. – Reinhold Neibuhr

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This week we had tie in the Council category between Bookworm Room’s The single most important election issue in 2016: The Constitution! and Joshuapundit’s The Clinton E-Mail Scandal And How It Will End.

As Watcher, I get paid the big bucks to break ties like this.

My piece detailed exactly how Mrs. Clinton broke the law, endangered national security and discussed where the current FBI investigation is as well as my prediction for how this all will end, which may startle some people!

Andrea’s articulate and well written article explored in great detail her belief that the real issue in the coming election is strengthening our Constitution. Not only did I vote for it myself, but she definitely wins the honors this week as far as I’m concerned! Here’s a slice:

“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
— Presidential Oath of Office

In 1992, James Carville famously hung a sign in Bill Clinton’s Little Rock campaign headquarters pointing campaign workers to Clinton’s most powerful campaign message: “The economy, stupid!” Today, in the run-up to the 2016 election, conservatives need to keep hammering their most powerful campaign message: “The Constitution!” After eight years of Obama’s savage disregard for the Constitution, the 2016 election is America’s last chance to return our Constitution to its rightful, and central, place in American politics.

In this essay, I hope to establish three things:

I. That the Constitution is a unique document that empowers individuals over government, making it the bedrock of American exceptionalism;

II. That Barack Obama has significantly damaged the Constitution’s preeminent position in American government, creating a dangerous imbalance in favor of an unlimited executive backed by a powerful, all-encompassing bureaucracy; and

III. That we must choose our next president very carefully in order to redress this imbalance lest we wake up one morning to find ourselves living under a permanent de facto dictatorship.

Part I

After winning the Revolution, America’s Founding Fathers had the unique opportunity to build a government from the ground up. Being educated men, they had several models from which to choose. They could replicate the British model, with its monarch, hereditary aristocracy, and House of Commons. They could attempt a commune of the type that the Pilgrims tried in 1620. Although that attempt almost killed the Pilgrims, the utopian impulse towards communism has continued to tempt revolutionaries ever since. They could try to put Plato’s Republic into effect and appoint themselves as the ideal Platonic ruling elite. They could even try the Judges approach from the Old Testament. They rejected all of those models.

The Founders’ genius lay in recognizing that all previous government models had a pyramidal structure, with power held only at the very top of the pyramid. This was certainly true of Britain which, beginning in 1066, had vested complete power in a hereditary monarchy. It took centuries for the aristocracy and landed gentry to chip away at the monarch’s authority, starting with the Magna Carta (1215) and finishing with the Glorious Revolution’s Bill of Rights (1689).

Ironically, thanks to the American Revolution, Parliament concluded that the British Bill of Rights, many parts of which the Founders incorporated wholesale into our Constitution, limited only the monarchy, but had no controlling effect on Parliament. In other words, Britain emerged from the American Revolution as pyramidal as before, only with Parliament at the top of the pyramid, not the King.

This same pyramidal pattern held true for all other governments the Founder’s studied. No matter the outcome of history’s wars and revolutions, government’s fundamental structure remained unchanged: Power resided at the top, with those citizens excluded from power enjoying limited freedoms and privileges — and those only at the whim of the ruling class. The Founders would therefore have been unsurprised to see that the 20th century’s communist revolutions, despite destroying the old ruling classes entirely, created governments no different from the ones they replaced – power was at the top, with the apparatchiks, and the people groaned in bloody servitude under what was just another self-appointed elite.

To prevent the tyranny of the elite – any elite – the Founders created an entirely new government structure, one never before tried: They broke governing authority into its constituent parts (legislative, executive, and judicial) and divvied that power amongst three different, but equal, branches of government. No government branch could act alone. The theory was that each branch would guard its power jealously, thereby keeping either of the other two branches from becoming dominant. These “checks and balances,” integral to our Founder’s design, were an elegant example of the old idea that it takes two thieves (or, in this case, three) to keep an honest bargain.

The Founders also went beyond creating a radically new government structure that diffused power throughout government to prevent the inevitable tyranny that flows from vesting all government power in one person or collective. In 1791, they enacted the Bill of Rights.

The philosophy underlying our Bill of Rights is not found in the Constitution itself, but in the Declaration of Independence:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

Throughout history, many have called themselves revolutionaries, but they are invariably just as power-hungry as the governments they’ve overthrown. The Founders, however, were true revolutionaries. Their new paradigm holds that a majority of citizens can voluntarily elect a legislature and abide by its laws; accept the executive’s enforcement of the laws (including punishments); and allow the judiciary to interpret the laws, if they have concluded that a particular set of political figures will best protect their life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. If, however, the majority of the people conclude that this same government no longer serves them well, they may reconstitute the government to make it more to their liking.

Being cautious men, and with Parliament’s gutting of the British Bill of Rights as a grim example of government overreach, the Founders did not feel that just a Declaration and Constitution were adequate protections for individuals. In 1791, the Founders enacted the Bill of Rights, explicitly spelling out the inviolate sphere of rights that each person possesses independent of government. Ironically, many of the rights are verbatim restatements of the same British Bill of Rights that Parliament had only recently nullified.

America’s Bill of Rights represents a complete inversion of the traditional power pyramid. In America, the governing power rests, not at the highest point of the pyramid, with kings and politicians, but in its base, which is comprised of individuals who possess inherent, unalienable rights. Because these individual rights are so important, they bear repeating here:

Amendment 1 – Freedom of Religion, Press, Expression.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Amendment 2 – Right to Bear Arms.

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Amendment 3 – Quartering of Soldiers.

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Amendment 4 – Search and Seizure.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment 5 – Trial and Punishment, Compensation for Takings.

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Amendment 6 – Right to Speedy Trial, Confrontation of Witnesses.

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

Amendment 7 – Trial by Jury in Civil Cases.

In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Amendment 8 – Cruel and Unusual Punishment.

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Amendment 9 – Construction of Constitution.

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment 10 – Powers of the States and People.

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Much more at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was Doug Ibendahl at Republican News Watch with National Review just handed Donald Trump the Election submitted by Puma By Design.

Mr. Ibendahl, a Chicago attorney was former General Counsel of the Illinois Republican Party. His contention is the the National Review,Weekly Standard and various movement conservatives HQ’d in New York City and Washington who just gratuitously attacked Donald Trump did him a huge favor by emphasizing his bona fides as an independent outsider unconnected to the GOP establishment. Based on the polls, he may very well be right.

Here are this week’s full results. The Noisy Room was unable to vote this week, but was not subject to the usual 2/3 vote penalty for not voting:

Council Winners:

Non-Council Winners:

See you next week!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum and every Tuesday morning, when we reveal the week’s nominees for Weasel of the Week!

And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council and the results are posted onFriday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere and you won’t want to miss it… or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

01/30/16
Vladimir Putin

Putin: I Still Like Communist Ideas ‘Very Much’

By: Brent Parrish
The Right Planet

Putin-Communist-Leader

In October 2015, I posted an installment of Update Brazil with Jeff R. Nyquist and Allan dos Santos. They interviewed author and political researcher Trevor Loudon on the communist infiltration of the U.S. government that occurred over many years.

The accepted and popular history of communism is that ended with the fall of the Berlin Wall. But those of us who research and study the history communism know that nothing could be farther from the truth. If anything, socialism (i.e. communism) has only strengthened its grip on the West. This shouldn’t really come as a surprise to anyone, considering who are current president is, and the fact that we have a full-blown big “C” communist running for president on the Democrat ticket (i.e. Bernie Sanders).

Many people believe modern-day Russia has abandoned its communist past. But as I attempted to show in my aforementioned article, former KGB officer Vladimir Putin has never relinquished his communist roots; nor did Mikhail Gorbachev, for that matter. In 2000, Putin reinstated the Soviet national anthem when he took the helm of the Russian Federation (cf. Soviet Union). Many of the symbols of the Soviet regime still remain in place to this day.

Now, CNS News reports Vladimir Putin stated on Monday that he rather likes communism.

Via CNSNews.com:

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Monday he still likes the ideas of theoretical communism “very much,” and recalled that unlike many others he had not publicly destroyed his Communist Party membership card, but still keeps it at home.

“In contrast to many functionaries I did not throw my membership card away or burn it in public,” he told supporters in the southern city of Stavropol. “I still keep it at home.”

The Itar-TASS news agency quoted the former KGB official as saying that he had been rank-and-file member and not an office-bearer of the Communist Party.

“I cannot say that I was a hardline advocate of the communist ideology,” he said. “Yet my attitude to all this was very delicate.”

Putin said that while serving in the KGB he liked – and continues today to like – communist and socialist ideas “very much.”

Referring to the “Moral Code of the Builder of Communism” – a set of 12 rules every party member was expected to follow – he said the “wonderful ideas” resembled the Bible in many ways.

However, the reality was different in practice.

“The practical embodiment of these wonderful ideas in our country was very far from what the utopian socialists had proclaimed,” he said.

The comments came as Putin critically addressed, for the second time in five days, the legacy of Soviet founder Vladimir Lenin.

Last Thursday, he caused a stir by saying, during a meeting of the Presidential Council for Science and Education, that Lenin had been responsible for ideas that led ultimately to the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Putin said then that Lenin’s ideas like providing regions with autonomy “planted an atomic bomb under the building that is called Russia which later exploded.”

In his address in Stavropol on Monday – to activists of his Russian Popular Front movement – Putin reiterated those points, recalling that Lenin and his successor Joseph Stalin had disagreed on the matter, with Stalin arguing in favor of a unitary state.

Stalin was overruled, and Lenin’s model that allowed for the possibility of territories seceding led to the Soviet Union’s eventual breakup, he said.

(In his 2005 state of the nation address, Putin famously described the collapse of the Soviet Union as “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the [20th] century.”)

Putin also criticized Lenin for the execution of Russia’s last royal ruler, Tsar Nicholas II, along with his family and servants in 1918, and for killing large numbers of Orthodox priests.

“Why did they kill Dr. Botkin?” he asked, in reference to the slain court physician Eugene Botkin. “Why did they kill the servants, people of proletarian origin by and large?”

“What for? Just for the sake of concealing a crime,” Putin said.

Not too long ago, a friend of mine pointed out something that I had never noticed before. Aeroflot, one of the largest and oldest airlines in the world, is the flag carrier of the Russian Federation. It was founded in 1923. It is now a quasi-private enterprise. Aeroflot was the official national airline of the Soviet Union. Aeroflot is still considered the de facto national airline of Russia. Interestingly, Aeroflot still retains the hammer and sickle on its official logo to this very day, which can be seen below under the “A” and “E” below.

Aeroflot-Hammer-and-Sickle-Logo

Another example of communist symbolism still present in Russia today is that of Mosfilm, one of the largest and oldest film studios in Russia and Europe. It, too, was founded in 1923. Below is a screencap of the opening credit for Mosfilm that appears in the 2012 Russian film “White Tiger.” Clearly present is the hammer and sickle being held aloft by the two statuesque figures of a man and woman (i.e. “the workers”), and the red star shining atop a building spire in the background.

Mosfilm-Hammer-and-Sickle

Now, imagine, if you will, modern-day Germany still retaining the symbolism of the Third Reich. What do you think the international reaction would be? And yet the Soviet regime, which is responsible for the deaths of millions, has never been held to account for its monstrous crimes against humanity and its own people … quite the contrary.

01/28/16
Jackpot1

Our Watcher’s Council Nominations – Hitting The Jackpot Edition

The Watcher’s Council

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

We regret to announce the departure of our friend Brent of The Right Planet, who resigned his seat on the Council and is taking a hiatus from writing to concentrate on other matters. We all wish him well and will miss him, although we look forward to him continuing to be a valued part of the Council community.

That also means that there is now a vacant seat on the Watcher’s Council. Interested parties should leave their site names and contact info (which of course won’t be published) in the comments section.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an email address (mandatory, but of course it won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6 PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out on Wednesday morning

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week…

Council Submissions:

Non-Council Submissions:

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that! And don’t forget to tune in Friday for the results!