11/24/14

Is Obama Deliberately Using the “ISIS Crisis” to Forge an Alliance With Iran?

By: Trevor Loudon
New Zeal

The world communist press has been pushing an American/Iranian “rapprochement” for some time now.

Communist Party of Britain paper

Communist Party of Britain paper

Navid Shomali, secretary of Iran’s communist Tudeh Party’s international department, recently wrote:

The Tudeh Party of Iran supports any lowering of tension between the U.S. and Iran. It has called for years for all disputes to be resolved by negotiation in accordance with international law.

Savvy commentators like Washington DC based Michael Ledeen have been warning of President Obama’s plans for nothing less than a full fledged US/Iran alliance.

Now comes further indication of the President’s intentions, from one of the Communist Party USA‘s best friends in Congress, Washington State Rep. Jim McDermott. Long tied to the Washington Communist Party, identities such as Pat Stell and the late Will Parry, McDermott is a very reliable guide to communist thinking and strategy.

I’ve always said that if you want to know what long time Communist Party “friend” Barack Obama will do tomorrow – read the communist press today.

In a recent speech on the floor of Congress, published in full, in the Communist Party’s Peoples World, Rep. McDermott lays out the communist agenda, selling points towards a US/Iranian detente and an eventual formal alliance.

mcdermott

Mr. Speaker:

I rise this morning on what could be the eve of a nuclear deal with the Islamic Republic of Iran, as U.S., European, and Iranian negotiators head back to Vienna for a final round of talks.

With so much of the region in turmoil right now, it seems hard to imagine that we could be on the verge of arguably the most important diplomatic achievement in the Middle East in recent U.S. history.

The leadership of President Obama, the tenacity of the U.S. negotiators, and the sincerity of President Rouhani and his team have set the stage for a landmark agreement that would turn the page on decades of distrust, dissension and cynicism.

Here is what a nuclear deal would mean:

* A profound reduction in the decades-long tension between Iran, the U.S. and our allies that had set us on a path to war.

* A contained Iranian nuclear program with verifiable internationally-accepted limits.

* Meaningful sanctions relief that bolsters Iran’s flagging economy and allows U.S. businesses access to a potentially vibrant market.

* An opening for a broader understanding between the U.S. and Iran, as well as an opportunity to court Iran as an ally in the fight against ISIS.

Here is the bait which will be used to lure the American public onto a viciously barbed hook.

Michael Ledeen maintains that Obama has wanted an alliance with Iran since the beginning of his first term of office. Obama would know that it would take something pretty dramatic to get the American public to swallow such a repugnant policy reversal.

To accept Iran, the public would have to be conditioned to fear something even worse.

It is known that Obama knew about ISIS for months and did nothing until they gathered so much strength and committed so many atrocities that he could no longer ignore them.

Now with horrific mass killings and brutal filmed beheadings, much of the American public believes that a ragtag army of Islamist extremists is public enemy number one. Not to diminish the threat from ISIS in any way, but what about Russia and its 8,500 nukes, China with its rapidly growing political, economic and military power, and an almost nuclear capable Iran? The focus is now all on ISIS – a threat that the president was at least negligent in allowing to grow.

Did the President deliberately allow ISIS to get out of hand in order to gull the American public into accepting an alliance with their former sworn enemy, Iran?

Is Obama deliberately exploiting the “Isis Crisis” in order to create the unholiest of unholy alliances?

Was ISIS allowed to grow unchecked, so that Obama could hold out his hand in friendship to a sworn enemy of liberty and American values? To a nation that still plans to annihilate America’s only real real friend in the Middle East, Israel?

I suspect that President Obama does not plan to let the “Isis Crisis” go to waste.

11/23/14

NSA director pushes for offensive cyber strategy

Cyber Security Analyst is shocked by what the NSA is telling Congress in open testimony

Report: China nuclear forces significantly expanding

U.S. Electrical, Financial Networks Mapped for Future Cyber Attacks

Cyber Security Analyst is shocked by what the NSA is telling Congress in open testimony

Intel boss’ warning on cyber attacks no joke, say experts

NSA Director: China can damage US power grid

11/22/14

Edward Snowden’s Bloody Hands

This November 17, 29014, National Press Club news conference outlines how Snowden has provided highly classified intelligence information to Russia and China, helped ISIS evade NSA surveillance, disclosed documents designed to undermine the U.S.-Israeli intelligence-sharing relationship, made Israel more vulnerable to terrorist attacks, and undermined the U.S. ability to monitor any nuclear deal Obama may make with Iran.

11/22/14

Rand Paul’s Anti-NSA Campaign Backfires

By: Cliff Kincaid
Accuracy in Media

Michael Hirsh is a Politico reporter who occasionally stumbles on the truth. In a piece on how the anti-NSA campaign has run out of gas, he says the critics of the intelligence agency have failed to come up with “actual instances of state abuse of surveillance” in the United States.

Wait a minute. You mean they have no hard evidence for their sensational claims of “domestic spying” on innocent Americans?

But Hirsh goes on: “Even the American Civil Liberties Union, which once called NSA surveillance ‘a stone’s throw away from an Orwellian state,’ admits it knows of no cases where anything even remotely Orwellian has happened.”

A separate Politico article makes it plain that Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) and his campaign against the agency are also at a crossroads, threatening his anticipated run for the presidency. A former National Security Agency (NSA) executive is calling him a clear threat to U.S. national security.

The Hirsh piece carries the ominous headline, “The Surveillance State Lives On,” but the article shows that innocent people are not at risk—terrorists are.

Throwing a lifeline to Glenn Greenwald, Edward Snowden’s main media mouthpiece, Hirsh said that Greenwald had “told me in an interview over the summer that five Muslim-Americans monitored by the NSA were ‘harassed by the government in different ways.’”

He may have said that, but that didn’t make it true. The allegations fizzled.

As we pointed out, Greenwald’s actual story on this “monitoring” and “harassment” fell flat because one of the most prominent activists allegedly under NSA surveillance was an official of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

Greenwald, who has spoken to conferences sponsored by CAIR and the International Socialist Organization, had insisted these Muslim-Americans were innocent victims of the NSA. Hirsh apparently bought into that.

But CAIR is an affiliate of the Muslim Brotherhood, a group banned in Egypt because of its terrorist ties. It was just designated an official terrorist group by the government of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

(In the interests of full disclosure, this writer has been labeled one of many “Islamophobic Individuals” by CAIR, apparently because of my articles about CAIR’s links to terrorist groups.)

Hirsh notes that the anti-NSA movement is not over, and that Senator Rand Paul is prepared to carry its banner into the 2016 presidential campaign.

The Kentucky senator and CAIR collaborated on a “Restore the Fourth” rally against the NSA on July 4, 2013.

Left unsaid in the piece is how Senator Paul thinks an anti-NSA campaign will either win him more Republican votes or make the country safe.

Exit polls from the congressional elections found 59 percent of Republicans were either very or somewhat concerned about a major terrorist attack, but 78 percent of Republicans thought Rand Paul would make a good president.

This reflects ignorance among some Republicans about the nature of the Kentucky senator’s anti-NSA campaign—which has taken the form of a class action lawsuit against the agency—and how it could undermine counter-terrorism efforts.

The senator’s flip-flops may contribute to the confusion about his actual position.

He voted against the recent anti-NSA bill in the Senate because he said he didn’t think it went far enough in crippling the intelligence agency. The bill failed to pass.

In a David Nather article, Politico characterized this as “Rand Doesn’t Stand,” a play on words on one of the senator’s favorite slogans, “Stand with Rand.”

In this case, Rand was “standing” on both sides of the issue, sort of like former Senator John Kerry (D-MA) voting for a bill before opposing it. Now, Rand’s friends in the ACLU are upset with the GOP’s “most famous libertarian,” the article states.

However, Nather says the defeat of the bill means that Paul “can keep speaking out against intrusive surveillance practices, and maintain his unique brand within the Republican Party, without having to go through the kind of lengthy debate that would have highlighted his tensions with Republican national security hawks.”

In a 2016 Republican presidential primary, Nather argued, the issue would prove “divisive,” as “the purist libertarian beliefs that built the Paul brand are going to keep crashing into traditional Republican standards, especially on national security.” Rand Paul, he argued, will be pulled into a “drawn-out debate” with other Republican contenders.

All of this may be true. But how will the senator makes his case against the NSA if Snowden and his allies have failed to come up with one credible example of an innocent person being injured or damaged by the surveillance?

How will it go over with a Republican audience when Rand Paul repeats his comparison of Edward Snowden’s treason to the disobedience of Martin Luther King Jr.?

What will the senator say when a rival notes that Julian Assange of WikiLeaks fame had once declared he was “a big admirer of Ron Paul and Rand Paul?”

Former officials of the NSA have generally refused to comment on politicians by name. Some have spoken out regarding how Snowden’s disclosures have made it easier for our enemies and adversaries to wage war against us.

But former NSA executive Charlie Speight broke the mold when he published a blog post under the headline, “Rand Paul: Putin’s Best Friend.”

Speight lambasted Sen. Paul’s anti-NSA rhetoric and actions, saying, “Buying into the uneducated, no-deeper-than-headlines ‘scandal’ claiming NSA collecting everyone’s cell phone calls, texts and emails, Paul has decided to attack one of America’s greatest assets.”

He says the result of the anti-NSA campaign “has been to damage the reputation of the single most successful and important intelligence organization in the world. That means, the organization most feared by our adversaries, primarily Russia, China, North Korea, Iran and terrorists.”

He argues that Sen. Paul “is directly enhancing the fortunes of our adversaries, weakening the U.S.’s best interests and putting our country—and her troops—at risk. Rand Paul is becoming an accomplice of Edward Snowden and becoming Vladimir Putin’s and Xi Jinping’s, Kim Jung Un’s, Hassan Rouhani’s and Al Qaeda’s best friend.”

Some may consider these comments a natural defense of an agency that once employed Speight. But it appears that our enemies also acknowledge the damage Snowden has done.

Zhang Zhaozhong, professor at the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) National Defense University, is quoted in the pro-China Global Times as saying, “The damage to the U.S. of Edward Snowden’s flight equals the loss of 10 heavy armored divisions.”

Snowden’s “flight,” of course, was to Russia through Hong Kong, China.

Writer and researcher Nevin Gussack says the quote by the Red Chinese professor is “more of a statement on the impact of an NSA contract employee who posed as a whistleblower and human/civil rights campaigner,” one “who portrayed himself as a victim of the big, bad, evil national security state.”

Snowden’s campaign, Gussack argues, has diverted attention from “the very real threat of Sino-Russian cyber-warfare and other aggressive activities directed at the U.S. It also gives the U.S. a black eye internationally, as well as galvanizing the leftists and the ‘antiwar’ elements amongst the ‘conservatives’ and left-libertarians to cripple the functions of the national security organs.”

He says the professor’s use of the “ten divisions” term is meant to characterize “a knockout blow to an enemy,” a “well-placed, well-timed psychological attack” on the United States that would “cripple our resistance and contribute to our defeat as a power without firing a volley of bullets.”

Admiral Michael S. Rogers, Commander of the U.S. Cyber Command and Director of the National Security Agency, spoke about this possibility on Thursday, during testimony before the House Intelligence Committee.

The Reuters news agency account said Rogers’ testimony included a warning that China and “probably one or two” other countries have the ability through cyber-warfare to disrupt or possibly shut down computer systems of U.S. power utilities, aviation networks and financial companies.

So while our media—and politicians like Rand Paul—have been waging war on the NSA, our enemies have been figuring out how to exploit Snowden’s disclosures and destroy the United States.

11/21/14

Will Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping humiliate Obama and humble America?

By: Charles Ortel
The Washington Times


President Obama, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit on Nov. 11, 2014, in Beijing. (AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Presidential Press Service)

As Americans distract ourselves absorbing deeply troubling domestic implications of President Obama’s defiantly extra-Constitutional and economically illiterate actions on illegal immigrants, Russia and China may move swiftly in coming days to support Iran and then redraw spheres of influence over minimally-defended, energy-rich nations throughout the Middle East.

Backing Iran openly and aggressively now against America’s naive and feckless foreign policy team would, at minimum, strike justifiable fear into monarchs in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, and Bahrain.

At worst, Russia and China might enable and facilitate the overthrow of these and other backward-looking states, all of which offer rich economic prizes that seem ripe for the plucking.

Looming trouble over Iran

This time of year, we remember that miracles do happen as we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving and contemplate Christmas and Hanukkah. Is it reasonable to expect a miracle in America’s tortured relationship with Iran?

In a word, no.

For reasons we dumb American citizens cannot possibly fathom, the Obama administration presses theoretically tougher and tougher sanctions against Russia while it also relies upon the good offices of Russian counterparts to make progress with Iran — an implacable and unrepentent enemy of ally Israel — and with Syria, which descends toward the chaos America created in Libya.

However negotiations are described especially by Mr. Obama’s misnamed press spokesman Josh Earnest, utterly discredited National Security Adviser Susan Rice or other members of the surrender wing of the Democratic Party, you are not even smart enough to be “Grubered,” if you believe what you hear without checking the complete file on whatever historic deal may be coming into view.

Does our team truly know what is going on inside Iran with its nuclear program?

Of course not.

Why, then, did we cave in and lift sanctions this year, letting Iran spread money, military weapons and influence many places in ways that certainly are detrimental to America’s long-held national security interests?

Unless interminable negotiations with Iran are extended beyond Nov. 24, Mr. Obama and his shamelessly humiliated negotiating team will soon find themselves fumbling to explain why any outline agreement truly protects national security interests of America, Israel and our fraying Western alliance.

When harsh lights shine on bold lies

Starting Jan. 20, 2009, Americans too charitably and too willingly suspended our natural disbelief, so Mr. Obama benefited as Prince Hippolyte did in Leo Tolstoy’s “War and Peace”: “Because of the self-confidence with which he had spoken, no one could tell whether what he said was very clever or very stupid.”

Interestingly, until scant days ago, the media and the incurious general public surrendered to an unelected “clerisy” that ardently believes only they know best, despite widespread and wholly contradictory evidence.

Sadly today, Team Obama cannot even recognize cold truth when it stands alone in an empty room.

Mr. Obama never will corrupt America’s system of governance fast enough to gain absolute power at home, but he certainly may diminish our country’s stature and geopolitical influence abroad for decades if left unchecked for much longer.

And right now a gigantic power vacuum presents itself to Russia and to China as each wrestles at home with differing sets of vexing and unresolved economic and political problems.

Watching Mr. Obama repeatedly flout domestic and international law, energy-starved China and pugnacious Russia now have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reign in America while redrawing the global balance of power decidedly in their favor.

Protracted and inevitable domestic unrest caused first by Mr. Obama’s lawless catering to non-voters and non-citizens against the clear will of the American electorate, and second by fomenting discord over events in Ferguson, Missouri, certainly could push off front pages any further aggressive moves by Vladimir Putin and new best friend Xi Jinping to wrest erstwhile American allies into the Russo-Sino orbit.

As Mr. Obama flies above Earth with his entourage, concentrating on a reality that only he can appreciate, Americans must consider how different our lives will become should we permanently lose access to the energy resources upon which this economy still relies.

Do we truly wish to let a dwindling minority of progressives in the Democratic Party “date-rape” citizens in this country who deserve to inherit the American Dream?

Or should an endemic and unrepentant pattern of willful lying by too many who control levers of power inside the Obama administration finally and swiftly have meaningful consequences?

Russia and China must be sorely tempted now in America’s gathering weakness.

Will you go silently into the night or speak up and help push America back from the brink?

11/21/14

The Council Has Spoken!! This Week’s Watcher’s Council Results – 11/21/14

The Watcher’s Council

http://www.romanobritain.org/Photos/roman-senate2.jpg

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

“This morning in Jerusalem Palestinians attacked Jews who were praying in a synagogue. To have this kind of act, which is a pure result of incitement, of calls for ‘days of rage,’ of just irresponsibility, is unacceptable.”

“People who have come to worship God in a sanctuary of a synagogue were/// murdered in a holy place in an act of pure terror and senseless brutality and murder.” – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry

“There are two races of men in this world but only these two: the race of the decent man and the race of the indecent man.” – Victor Frankl, Auschwitz survivor, in ‘Man’s Search For Meaning’

“It’s not enough for us to say: ‘There are those carrying out Ribat’ (religious war over land claimed to be Islamic). We must all carry out Ribat in the Al-Aqsa [Mosque]. It’s not enough for us to say: ‘The settlers have arrived [at the Mosque]’. They have come, and  we have to prevent them, by any means necessary, from entering the Sanctuary. They have no right to enter it. They have no right to defile it. – Mahmoud Abbas, inciting violence on Official Palestinian Authority TV

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-_nEAkWOufFU/T366WMxCdrI/AAAAAAAABOg/easpV-8FMnM/s400/Joshua_Dali_Sun.jpg

This week’s winning essay was Joshuapundit’sThe Blood Of Zion Cries Out. It was my reaction on the day four rabbis and a Druze traffic cop who tried to stop the killers were murdered with guns and meat cleavers in a Jerusalem synagogue. Here’s a slice:

Early this morning, four Jews at morning prayers were murdered in a synagogue in Jerusalem after two Palestinian broke in and assaulted the worshipers with gunfire and meat cleavers.

Many others were wounded and four are in critical condition.

The terrorist attack took place in Har Hof a predominantly Orthodox neighborhood at the Kehilat Yaakov synagogue on Agasi Street.

The Murder victims were identified as Rabbi Moshe Twersky, the head of the Torat Moshe yeshiva, 59; 40-year-old  Rabbi Aryeh Kupinsky; 50-year-old Rabbi Kalman Levine; and 68-year-old Rabbi Avraham Shmuel Goldberg(HY”D). Rabbi Kupinsky, Rabbi Levine and Rabbi Twersky were all American citizens, while Rabbi Goldberg was a British subject. A Druze policeman, 30-year-old Master Sergeant Zidan Sif subsequently died of his wounds as well, and all Israel will mourn and honor him.

The killers stormed the synagogue at 7 AM local time. There was no warning and no way for the victims to defend themselves.The rabbis were murdered during the sacred prayer of Shimoneh Esrei, with siddurim (prayer books) in their hands and their tefillum on.

Eye witness Ya’akov Amos said: ‘The terrorist moved to within a metre of me then started shooting. One, two, three, bang, bang, bang. I immediately hit the ground and tried to protect myself with a prayer stand. He kept screaming ‘Allah hu’Akbar’.

There was blood everywhere, so much that one of the medical workers slipped in it and broke his leg.

The international reaction was interesting. Even U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry seemed shocked, with his voice quavering. He even used the “T” word and called for an end to incitement against Jews.

Phillip Hammond, Britain’s Foreign Secretary contented himself with a bloodless statement that ‘both sides’ should seek to ‘reduce tension.’ President Obama, of course, said much the same thing. Somehow, I doubt they would have merely talked about both sides reducing tension if four imams had been murdered by a Jew and Qu’rans profaned in this way.

Israel’s economics minister Naftali Bennett was interviewed by the BBC today, and provides us with another indication of exactly how sick and depraved Britain has become when it comes to Israel and the Jews.

(just a hint – when Bennett mentions Abu Mazen, he is using Mahmoud Abbas’s nom de guerre, the terrorist name he used as Arafat’s second-in-command.)

Notice how the interviewer doesn’t even address the issue of Abbas inciting terrorism, but pulls the case of an Arab bus driver who died yesterday, as though that made the savage murder of four Jews at prayer legitimate. That Arab driver, by the way, had a full investigation and an autopsy done on him and there is no doubt he committed suicide. Unlike the Palestinian Authority, Israel jails murderers no matter who they are.

I really felt like saying ‘Kol Hakavod’ when Bennett held up a picture of one of the victims, which the interviewer hastily told him to put down lest he upset the gentle sensibilities of her viewers. I think it is absolutely essential to do just that – to let the British public see what their government is funding and supporting. And I hope it upsets them to the point of utter shame.

At the end of the interview, Bennett says that Britain is going to have to make a choice of whether they support the Free World or not. As I’m sure Bennett knows, the British Government has already made that choice. Which is why, perhaps, they feel compelled to put up with soldiers being beheaded in broad daylight and no go areas for police and non-Muslims in London and other large British cities.

The murderers were both killed in a shootout with police at the scene. They were Ghassan and Oday Abu Jamal from the Jabal Mukaber neighborhood in east Jerusalem. Needless to say, they were acclaimed as heroes and martyrs by all the factions of the Arabs whom call themselves Palestinians.

A Palestinian woman scatters sweets as she celebrates with others an attack on a Jerusalem synagogue

Palestinian supporters of The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, (PFLP), a small militant group, dance while waving their flags, after they heard the news of the shooting

“We responded with shouts of joy when we received the news about their deaths,” Ala’a Abu Jamal said of his cousins Ghassan and Uday Abu Jamal to Yedioth Aharonoth. “People here distributed candies to guests who visited us, and there was joy for the martyrs.”

In a message published on its official new website Al-Resalah, Hamas said the attack was “a quality development in fighting the occupation. We highly value the heroism of its operatives.” Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri praised the attack on Qatari news channel Al-Jazeera as “heroic,” calling for more attacks of the same kind.

Hamas MP Mushir Al-Masri happily wrote on Twitter that “Jerusalem has nothing but men who love martyrdom. The heroes of the knife are in Jerusalem. The heroes of the run-over [car attacks] are in Jerusalem. In Jerusalem men take revenge.”

And he posted this on his Facebook page:

A cartoon posted on the Facebook page of Hamas MP Mushir Al-Masri has perpetrators of the Jerusalem attack dressed in religious Jewish garb asking 'where are they?' (photo credit: Facebook)

The Arab killer is asking ‘Where are they hiding?” Needless to say, in spite of what this cartoon shows none of the worshipers were armed.

And Fatah? Mahmoud Abbas, AKA Abu Mazen issued a ‘condemnation’ that wasn’t one. In a statement (in English, not Arabic) it said that “The Palestinian presidency” condemns violence “from whatever source” and “demands an end to the invasions of Al-Aqsa Mosque and the provocations of the Settlers.”

In other words, ‘So sorry, but unless you surrender Jerusalem to us expect more of the same.’

This is the same Mahmoud Abbas who accused Jews of “contaminating” Al-Aqsa Mosque last week, who just a few days ago was telling his people, in Arabic, to ‘defend Jerusalem’ by any means necessary. This is the same Mahmoud Abbas who said nothing when Fatah published cartoons and Facebook posts encouraging terrorist attacks on Jews and “days of rage” to defend the ‘threatened’ Al-Aqsa.

Tawfik Tirawi, former chief of the Palestinian General Security in the West Bank and a member of Fatah’s Central Committee made it even plainer, and in Arabic. Today he told a radio station in Hebron that the attack was “nothing but a reaction to the recent crimes of the occupation and the settlers in occupied Jerusalem and across the nation. The threats of the occupation against our people and the Palestinian leadership, represented by the president, will only increase our efforts in safeguarding our rights.”

His remarks were reprinted on Fatah’s official Facebook page.

I should make something clear here. This is not the fault of Abbas, or Hamas, or any of the Arabs who identify themselves as Palestinians.

It is the fault of the Israeli government.

A significant number of the Palestinians are simply acting as they have always acted since the 1920′s, and these tendencies were unleashed even further once Arafat and the PLO were allowed in to take over after Oslo.

http://thesystemworks.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/hebron_massacre_newspaper.jpg

Israeli governments since Oslo have always allowed themselves to be pressured to ignore these instances of sheer horror… to release  convicted murderers, to make concessions to the terrorist entities on Israel’s borders, and most of all to avoid  finishing them off entirely when their violence and bloodshed mandated a response. This has been especially true since Barack Obama, who styles himself as the Palestinian’s very own community organizer entered the White House.

Is it any wonder that this sort of thing continues to happen? Is it really so puzzling that after allowing Hamas to continue in Gaza and maintaining any kind of relationship with Abbas and the PLO once they allied themselves openly with Hamas that they would resort back to Arafat’s tactics?

Yasser Arafat himself outlined for his followers what this war was really about. On Jordanian TV, right after signing the Oslo Accords he was criticized for signing a peace agreement with the Jews. He responded by reminding his audience of the Peace of Hubidiyeh, a treaty Mohammed made with the Quraysh tribe that he violated as soon as he was strong enough to massacre them, a story every Muslim knows. And then he outlined exactly what this war was about, saying that “either the Jews will push us into the sea or we will push them into the sea.”

Arafat, the leaders of Hamas and numerous members of Fatah have sung the same songs for years. Is it their fault that Israeli governments for years have refused to take them seriously?

More at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was Victor Davis HansonA Moral primer submitted by Joshuapundit. Hanson is an old classicist among his other virtues. In this essay, he looks at the state of America and the world, and especially the president who leads us and sees a lack of political and personal morality as a deadly problem, possibly a terminal one for our republic. Do read it.

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 weeks’ 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?

11/20/14

Complexities and Hard Truths

Arlene from Israel

A bit more follow up and analysis before Shabbat…

Some of the recommended actions I wrote about yesterday, and more, have been put in place.  Not because I wrote about them, obviously, but because the government in this regard is responding with some appropriate security and deterrence measures:

There is now a large police presence in Jerusalem bolstered by Navy commandos who are volunteers serving on their own time.  Troops have been deployed outside of educational institutions and kindergartens, as well as outside some Arab neighborhoods – where checkpoints have been set up for searching people who might be suspect.

Observation balloons (with cameras) are being scattered about the city, controlled from a central command location.  This seems to me a very good idea.  Sometimes from above activity can be spotted that would not be caught by observers on the ground.

And the policy of demolition of terrorists’ homes is being enforced.

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/187675#.VG33DJtxnIV

There has also been a report from Arutz Sheva – not confirmed elsewhere – that the bodies of the Har Nof terrorists will not be returned to their families.  Great move, if it is so.

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/187664#.VG4NhJtxnIV

Is all of this sufficient?  I would not go so far as to declare this definitively.  But we are seeing some serious steps in the right direction.

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What’s not serious is the number of “benefits” to the PA that will be put on hold or terminated.  I had anticipated this.  Today I’m reading that there were certain roads in Judea and Samaria that were closed to non-Israelis because of security risks.  Just as over time checkpoints in Judea and Samaria have been removed, those road were scheduled to be opened to Palestinian Arabs soon.  Well, says Bogie Ya’alon, they will not be.  That’s it? Let’s get real here.

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I had written recently about the fact that the men murdered in Har Nof were not settlers, were in western Jerusalem, were not agitators or radical activists, were not people who tend to go up on Har Habayit (The Temple Mount) – even though these various reasons – occupation, Temple Mount agitation, etc. – are provided as the rationale for why the terrorists acted.

The Elder of Zyion blog has carried these thoughts one step further and the analysis is so very important that I want to share it here:

After showing Arab cartoons celebrating the Har Nof massacre such as this one:

He writes (emphasis in the original):

”Images like these are celebrated by many, and condoned by the rest, with their silence.

“This is the fundamental story of the massacre. For once, the motives are crystal-clear.

”It cannot be about ‘occupation’ or ‘settlements’ because the attack was inside the Green Line.
”It cannot be about ‘Al Aqsa’ because the people who prayed there are not the types to ascend.
”It cannot be about ‘Israeli oppression’ because the victims were not soldiers or reservists.

”The facts are undeniable: the terrorists targeted the most Jewish looking people at a synagogue while they were at prayer.

”The cartoons illustrate nicely what the west wants to hide: the targets are Jews. Period.

”Palestinian Arab cartoons in general routinely depict “Israelis” as a Nazi-style caricatures of a bearded, black-clad men, even though no Israeli leader has ever resembled that person. These victims did. The cartoons taught generations of terrorists that their enemy is the Jews, not Israelis.

”The West wants to find excuses for Palestinian terror, to pretend that both sides are part of the problem. But this attack, and these cartoons, combined with the glaring absence of any Palestinians who object to this kind of incitement, reveal the ugly truth: that in the end it is about Jew-hatred. All the other reasons being given by pseudo-intellectuals of ‘occupation’ or ‘Al Aqsa’ or ‘Gaza’ or bus drivers who commit suicide are simply excuses to divert the world’s attention from the simple fact that this is really about the world’s oldest hate.

“Once you realize this you can start to understand the reality and not the spin that we’ve been fed for decades.”

http://elderofziyon.blogspot.co.il/2014/11/lessons-from-sick-depraved-antisemitic.html#.VG4CvGdxnIU

Wow!  Stunningly on the mark.  Please share this. It deflates all of the arguments of Palestinian Arab “suffering.”

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The mayor of Ashkelon, Itamar Shimoni, has taken a position that is not surprising, and is also not politically correct:

He announced yesterday that Arab workers will no longer be allowed on construction sites at kindergartens in the city where shelters are being built, and that security personnel will be placed at kindergartens near construction sites.  He said he made this decision in consultation with the police.

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4594006,00.html

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Well…

The furor is all that we might expect  The mayor is being attacked and accused of racism.  It is being said that he is preventing Arabs from working, and tearing the fabric of good Jewish-Arab relations in the city.  Netanyahu, for example, said that we have no desire to target all Israeli Arabs, 99.9% of whom are decent folk.

My response is also going to be not politically correct, for there are painful realities at work here.  If 99.9% of Israeli Arabs are decent people, then – as there are approximately 1,700,000 Arabs in Israel – we have 1,700 who are not OK.  And the awful truth is that they cannot always be readily identified. The terrorist who shot Yehuda Glick outside of the Begin Center worked in the restaurant in the Center.  One of the terrorists who committed the Har Nof atrocities worked in a grocery store next to the synagogue.

Back in previous years, there have been instances of Arabs who were loyal employees of a business owner for years, and then murdered that business owner.  What seems to have happened is that such employees were recruited by radicals.  As long as we have a reasonable representation of such radicals within our society – radicals who endorse and encourage the killing of Jews – as well as others who are receptive to the messages of the radicals, we have a problem.  What comes to mind most readily is the Islamic Movement of Israel, Northern Branch.  Its leader and members are Israeli citizens.  But they have been shown to have links with Hamas and the Brotherhood.  Of course, there are others as well.

The mayor did not ban employment for Arabs everywhere in the city.  He was concerned with the safety of children.  An alternative to his decision might have been thorough security checks for any Arab who works near the kindergartens.  But let us not pretend there is no problem.

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To demonstrate how things can be, and what a positive attitude is possible, we need only look at the Druse community in Israel, about which so much has been written in the last days.

At the funeral of Zidan Saif yesterday, President Ruby Rivlin spoke, saying:

“He went first into the fire to protect the residents of Jerusalem. Without fear, he faced the terrorists and risked his life to protect the residents of Jerusalem. He acted on the values on which he was raised—courage, valor, self-sacrifice.”

While Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch declared:

“[Saif] is a source of pride for you, the Druse people, for the police, and for the people of Israel.  The values that you instilled in him compelled him to protect, and he fell while defending the state of Israel. We have that shared fate. Together we will fight the murderers.” (Emphasis added)

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Israeli Druse Naif Alian has written a guest column for Israel Hayom.  In it he said:

We, the Druze, are part of the people of Israel. I have never felt a difference between me, my relatives and my friends and the Jewish people. We are one family, always have been and always will be.

“The blood pact between Druze and Jews in the land of Israel began in the 1930s, and it will never be broken. When Haganah forces arrived in Shfaram, my late father Hussein joined them. During the War of Independence, he and 30 other local Druze enlisted in the Israel Defense Forces and took part in the liberation of the Galilee.

“In the 1950s, my father was one of the five sheikhs who signed the agreement making military service compulsory for the Druze. In 1957, I lost my brother Salim during his military service. Today, I am the proud father of three IDF officers. They have never felt different from anyone else and have always walked with their heads held high — as I taught them to do.”

http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_opinion.php?id=10645

Beautiful.  As it can be, as it should be, with non-Jewish Israelis who feel connected and choose to be a part of the land and the people. The problem, of course, is that Palestinian Arabs who are Israeli citizens are conflicted in their loyalties in some (definitely not all!) instances, pulled in different directions.

Much to consider, on another day.  Complexities and hard truths.

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We end on this upbeat note:

“In a profound display of faith in the face of carnage, the family of a newborn infant on Wednesday held his circumcision ceremony at the Jerusalem synagogue where terrorists slaughtered worshipers and a police officer exactly 24-hours earlier, Israel’s Ch. 2 News reported.

“’This is Judaism – from tragedy to joy,’ said Mohel Association Chairman, Chaim Miller, who performed the festive ancient ritual – symbolizing the eight-day-old infant’s joining the Jewish people – at the B’nai Torah synagogue in the Har Nof neighborhood.”

http://www.algemeiner.com/2014/11/20/brit-held-in-terror-attack-synagogue-in-your-bloods-you-shall-live-video/

(scroll down for the 40 second video)

11/19/14

CAIR, others join with Communist groups to ‘organize’ in Ferguson and beyond

New Zeal

By Renee Nal.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) has thrown their hat into the ring along with various communists and their sympathizers such as Michael McPhearson, and radical Islamic groups who seek to further their own agenda by inciting violence in Ferguson, Missouri and across the country, should a grand jury fail to indict Officer Darren Wilson.

As reported at Fox News,

Using social media, conference calling and traditional outreach methods, leaders of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) are portraying Brown and Detroit mosque leader Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah as African-American victims of police targeting, according to the Washington-based Center for Security Policy (CSP). In a conference call organized by CAIR-linked “Muslims for Ferguson, a CAIR official called Abdullah a “Shaheed,” or martyr, and said both he and Brown were victims of a national security apparatus that had “completely gone wild” and engaged in “demonizing and criminalizing Muslims.”

CAIR, who was listed as a terror organization by United States Ally UAE over the weekend, is one of many Islamic groups and terrorist sympathizers involved in organizing protests in the wake of the death of Michael Brown. After the shooting, outsiders descended upon Ferguson, causing destruction to local businesses.

One of the terrorist sympathizers is Bassem Masri, who astonishingly has been enlisted by the so-called Department of Justice to assist with “police reform.” Bassem Masri has also publicly pledged his support for Hamas, the terror organization responsible for numerous rocket attacks against Israel, as reported in a must-read article by J.E. Dyer at Liberty Unyielding.

Bassem Masri, aside from pledging his allegiance to Hamas, has been captured on video provoking police officers by referring to one of them as a “pig” and further declaring that he is praying for his death. On Wednesday, Masri tweeted:

While the Department of Justice enlists radicals, the FBI was quoted by ABC News as saying that violence is “likely” by “some extremist protesters…” A Tumbler has been posted highlighting protest details across America, the majority of which are planned take place on the day of, or the day after the announcement, meaning the grand jury decision of whether or not to indict Officer Darren Wilson.

Jim Hoft of the Gateway Pundit posted a disturbing map of businesses in Saint Louis that were identified as “targets.” He gathered the information from NoIndictment.org. As summarized by J.E. Dyer, whose articles are extremely well-researched,

On their list are, among other spots, corporate headquarters, government offices, museums, shopping plazas, Lambert International Airport, the Ritz-Carlton, and the Gateway Arch.

Dyer opines that government buildings in the area may be targeted in lieu of the other suggested businesses, if there are not enough protesters to cover all suggested locations. This may explain why there is currently a heavy presence of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) “Federal Protective Service” vehicles in the area, as reported at Broadside News. A local CBS Affiliate also opined on the heavy presence of DHS in the area, but “St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson denies that there are federal agents in the area.”

Watch a report of a Navy Veteran who lost his job and allegedly threatened with “incarceration” and called a “terrorist” after he posted two photos and a short video on Facebook which featured “several dozen Homeland Security vehicles in the parking garage” of his employer, the Drury Plaza Hotel in Chesterfield, a town located about a half hour from Ferguson, Missouri:

Back in August, several Islamic, progressive, and communist groups, such as the Tauheed Youth Development Life, the New Black Panther Party (NBPP), the Organization for Black Struggle (OBS) [who, despite no mention of Islam on their website, runs the Muslims for Ferguson Facebook page], the Moorish Science Temple, the Coalition Against Police Crimes and Repression, the Nation of Islam – Mosque 28, and the Universal African Peoples Organization (UAPO) passed out flyers during a protest, as evidenced by Antonio French, who became well-known for tweeting in real-time on events in Ferguson.

It should be noted that in anticipation of violence, gun sales in the Ferguson area have spiked by 50 percent, as residents fear for their lives. The irony is that those who advocate gun control (communists) are creating the conditions that make people want to purchase guns for the safety of their families.

CNN, for example, quoted hair salon owner Constance Garnett as saying,

“We don’t have the constant flow of customers that we normally have coming through here because everybody is afraid.”

“…Everybody is afraid…” This is justice?

11/19/14

A Day Later

Arlene from Israel

The death toll in the Nar Nof massacre has risen to five.

Master Sergeant  Zidan Saif, 30 – of the Druse village of Kfar Yanouch in the Galil – was one of the first police officers on the scene during the massacre yesterday, and sustained wounds to his head.  Last night, he succumbed to those wounds in the hospital.  He leaves behind a wife and a four month old daughter.

adaylater

 

 

 

 

 

 

Courtesy: Family

I want to take a moment to pay tribute to him, and to the Druse community in Israel.  Just ten days ago, another Druse, an officer in the Border Police, was killed in the course of a terror attack.  In fact, it seems to me that the Druse have given above and beyond.  It is emblematic that the Druse village of Beit Jann has lost the highest number of men per capita of any locality in the course of Israel’s wars.

Loyal citizens of Israel, the Druse serve proudly in the IDF, and in various police units. The families accept with dignity the sacrifices of sons lost in battles on behalf of Israel.

Saif was buried today.  Haredim (ultra-Orthodox) were in attendance in large numbers in order to pay tribute to him for giving his life in an effort to protect members of their community. Buses were organized to bring people from Jerusalem to the village in the north.  Calls went out for young people of the community to attend as well: “We won’t be ungrateful, we will show our gratitude to those who sacrificed their lives for us.”

Thousands at Sif's funeral (Photo: Avihu Shapira)

Credit: Avihu Shapira

This, my friends, is precisely how it should be.

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The Har Nof casualties, then:

Sergeant Zidan Saif, Rabbi Avraham Shmuel Goldberg, Rabbi Kalman Levine,
Rabbi Moshe Twersky and Rabbi Aryeh Kupinsky

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The horror stories continue – told by witnesses and survivors.  It would seem that the cream of the religious community of Har Nof was killed in the attack.

There are injured still in critical condition. Two had surgery yesterday, and one has regained consciousness.  One of the badly injured is reported to have severe brain damage.

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It is very much the practice here in Israel to resume “business as usual” as quickly as possible, so that terrorists cannot think they are able to disrupt our lives.  Thus did davening (praying) continue this morning in the synagogue where the attack took place.

Prayer service Wednesday morning (Photo: Noam (Dabul) Dvir)

Credit: Noam (Dabul) Dvir

Those who pray in the synagogue regularly were joined by others – including a couple of MKs – who came in a show of solidarity.  Here, on the right, you see Naftali Bennett:

Economy Minister Naftali Bennett (R) prays inside a synagogue where two terrorists from East Jerusalem killed five people on Tuesday. November 19, 2014. (photo credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

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The question now is where we go from here in dealing with the violence.  As I am reading it, this particular attack has been a turning point psychologically.  Instead of mumblings about whether this or that attack may be leading towards an intifada, I now read reference to the fact that we’re dealing with an intifada.  For all intents and purposes that is a recognition of war.

And so?

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Let me begin by saying that while I am reading calls for this, I do not believe that attempting to seize control of the Temple Mount now would be a constructive act.  I have written extensively about the fact that King Abdullah of Jordan sits uneasily on his throne. Were he to be toppled, he would be replaced by jihadis and radicals – and this would definitely not be in our best interest. What is more, we have a relationship with Jordan that is valuable in a host of other ways.

One of the ways Abdullah maintains political strength and commands respect from the people is by demonstrating that he – via the Jordanian Wakf – exercises control on the Mount and is able to confront Israel. He makes a great show of this.  And while it is not to my liking, I do understand it.  To undercut Abdullah now, while the region is in such ferment, would be unwise.

Do I think what Moshe Dayan did was deplorable?  Yes.  Do I believe Jews should have full and equal rights on the Mount? Absolutely. But what was done badly in the past must be undone when the time is right.

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More to the point, I believe, is exercising full Israeli sovereignty and control over all Arab neighborhoods of eastern Jerusalem.  Not incidentally, this includes effective control over Har HaZeitim (the Mount of Olives) and the ancient Jewish cemetery there, where we are still seeing Arab vandalism and destruction of graves.

The need to be strong – to make the Arabs fear us – is a point I’ve already made. There will be much to write about in coming weeks.  Some measures have already been taken –  strengthening of certain laws, etc. But not nearly enough yet.  Some thoughts:

We need to bring out the army and have an on-going military presence in the city.  Checkpoints, if necessary, at intersections leading in and out of the most troublesome neighborhoods.  There should be a situation in which Arabs with knives and cleavers are likely to be caught before they use their weapons.  They should at least know they cannot walk around with such weapons with impunity.

We need to increase our intelligence and behave proactively to bring in people plotting attacks before they are reality – with preventative detention of agitators.

There are caches of guns in Arab areas of Jerusalem, and they need to be searched out and confiscated.  I find it deplorable that this has not yet been done.

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Naftali Bennett gave an interview on Army Radio today in which he espoused this sort of approach.

We should not active defensively, he says, but go on the attack, just as we did to put down terrorism in Arab areas of Judea and Samaria, in 2002, in Operation Defensive Shield.  Terror infrastructure must be rooted out.

http://www.jpost.com/Arab-Israeli-Conflict/Bennett-calls-for-military-operation-in-east-Jerusalem-to-root-out-terror-382236

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In line with this shift in attitude, I would hope for a proud stance that no longer reflected continual anxiety about what the international community is thinking.

It is time to openly conceptualize the PA and Abbas as the enemy, not as a potential partner, whom the world is waiting for us to sit down and talk to as soon as matters settle down. Passing the law establishing Israel as a Jewish state is a part of this thinking.

Defense Minister Ya’alon has announced that certain benefits that were to be accorded the PA will be put on hold now.  I read this and thought, Is there any question? Benefits for the PA?  But those benefits that Ya’alon has in mind are almost certainly only a small part of the courtesies and services that have been extended to the PA and that should now be terminated.

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Other issues connected to this situation:

We are dealing with multiple Arab populations, which makes matters more complex: There are Arabs living in parts of Judea and Samaria administered by the PA, who either enter Israel legally to work, or enter illegally.  There are Arabs in Jerusalem who have Jerusalem residency cards. And there are Arabs who are full citizens of Jerusalem.  Each of these populations requires a different response.

Simmering under the surface is the issue of our jurisdiction in Area C in Judea and Samaria – over which, according to Oslo, we were to have civil and military control.  I cannot say this is a question of sovereignty, because – unfortunately – we have not declared sovereignty in this area (yet).  But it is a close second, in terms of losing our prerogatives in an area over which we were supposed to have control. And this, in my opinion, is directly connected to the governmental mental set (which must change now) regarding such matters as slipshod control over certain neighborhoods of Jerusalem.

No one said this was going to be easy to sort out.  Or to make right.

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As I continue to track what’s going on, I hope I can bring some good news and a smile to my readers time and again.

What I will say here is that Israelis are extraordinarily resilient. We are determined to come out on top in this struggle, for this is our land.  Enormously important, as we fight this fight, is unity among the people:  We must hold fast as one.