By: Fern Sidman
The Iranian city of Isfahan was the scene of a gruesome murder on Monday, November 26th, when a 57-year old Jewish woman identified as Tuba N, was brutally stabbed to death and her body mutilated by Muslim assailants. The alleged motivation for the murder stemmed from a protracted property dispute, according to the family of the murdered woman, who did not release her last name. Relatives say that Tuba had been consistently harassed for years by her Muslim neighbors in an attempt to drive the family from their home and expropriate the property for an adjoining mosque.
According to Menashe Amir, an expert on Iranian Jewry who spoke with the victim’s family, “The religious radicals even expropriated part of the house and attached it to the mosque’s courtyard. The Jewish family appealed to the courts with the help of a local attorney to seek redress for the conflict, despite the threats to their lives.”
Reports indicate that the Muslims affiliated with the neighboring mosque repeatedly badgered the victim and her family for years to get them to vacate their domicile in order to permit an expansion project of the mosque. The family refused to acquiesce and it was reported that the head of the household filed a complaint, citing the mosque officials were trying to run them out.
According to the sister of the victim who witnessed the heinous murder and reported the details to Amir, attackers allegedly butchered Tuba’s body and cut off her hands. Amir said that while the victim’s husband was in Tehran on Monday attending to business matters, “thugs broke into her home, tied up her two sisters who were living with her, and repeatedly stabbed her to death.”
At this juncture, the Iranian authorities have not released the victim’s dismembered body to her family and it has been suggested that local law enforcement agencies are attempting to cover up the case.
The murder has stoked fears of further Muslim attacks amongst Isfahan’s dwindling Jewish community. As of 2009, Isfahan, which is Iran’s third largest city with a population of 1.5 million people, was the home to 1200 of Iran’s remaining 25,000 Jews. Since that time, Jewish demographics in the Islamic Republic have plummeted. A government census published earlier this year indicated there were only 8,756 Jews left in Iran, and Amir said that Isfahan was now home to fewer than 100 Jewish families.
Morsi Becomes Islamic Pharaoh and the Caliphate Moves Forward
Alea acta est… the Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.
The Obama Administration’s empowerment of the Muslim Brotherhood has had some interesting ramifications, among them the changes in the status of long standing U.S. clients and allies in the region.
Everyone Over the Fiscal Cliff!
This week’s winner, Joshuapundit’s The Next Islamist Domino – Jordan takes a look at a very under the wire U.S. client that could very well be the next state to fall to Islamists… perhaps even with the Obama Administration’s encouragement. Here’s a slice:
Jordan and King Abdullah appear to be next on the Islamist hit list. And the Obama administration seems to be sending signals that it tacitly approves.
Jordan has been at a tipping point for quite some time, partly because it’s a U.S client state (which doesn’t sit well with a significant part of its population whom consider King Abdullah an American tool) and partly because of its peculiar history and tribal aspect.
There have been protests with Muslim Brotherhood participation for two years now, but the most recent outbursts were large riots across the Kingdom that spread across the Kingdom and called openly for King Abdullah’s ouster. In spite of brutal suppression by the King’s security police and numerous arrests, the unrest, referred to as the “The November Intifada” is only growing.
Adding to the turmoil were remarks on November 19th by Deputy State Department Spokesman Mark Toner, who stated at a press conference that there was “thirst for change” in Jordan and that the Jordanian people had “economic, political concerns,” as well as “aspirations.” Needless to say, this sent a clear signal to King Abdullah’s foes and to America’s remaining allies in the region that just like Egypt’s Mubarak, the Obama Administration is willing to cut Abdullah loose in favor of an Islamist regime.
The unrest was ostensibly over an end to government subsidies that have led to increases in fuel prices and other staples,but it’s been festering for quite some time. Here are the two main factors involved.
Jordan, like the other Arab nations of Egypt, Tunisia and Syria without oil wealth had been keeping things quiet by subsidizing the price of food staples and cooking oil. The skyrocketing prices of these items on the world market combined with the rising economies of countries like India and China have made this an impossible solution to continue. Where it used to be Indians and Chinese who suffered when food prices rose dramatically, now it’s the Arabs without oil wealth who are at the bottom of the chain because of their dysfunctional economies, and it’s no coincidence that with the exception of Bahrain and Libya where there were tribal issues involved, all of the Arab Spring revolts have been in countries without oil wealth. It’s also worth noting that in the only the two countries with oil resources that experienced Arab Spring unrest, the Bahrain revolt failed miserably, and that the one in Libya only succeeded because of extensive U.S. assistance.
To cut it down to one a short paragraph, no matter what you’re hearing from the usual suspects, the Arab Spring isn’t about a hankering for democracy. It’s about the price of goods and food.And the Islamists are capitalizing on this (with the help of an Islamist-friendly American administration) by telling the Arab Street that all it’s going to take to fix things is a return to hard line Islamism and sharia.
The second factor is similar to the one operating in Syria, longtime rule by a privileged minority caste. In Syria, it’s the Shia Alawites ruling over a predominantly Sunni population. In Jordan, it’s Bedouins ruling over Palestinians, or Qurayshi Arabs, to give them their proper name.
In our non-Council category, the winner was Sultan Knish with War Is The Answer submitted by The Noisy Room.
Okay, here are this week’s full results:
- *First place with 3 2/3 votes! – Joshuapundit – The Next Islamist Domino – Jordan
- Second place with 3 votes – Simply Jews – The Pillar of Defense fiasco
- Third place with 2 votes – The Right Planet – Wrapped Around the Axle
- Fourth place with 1 1/3 votes – Bookworm Room – Second Amendment day: shooting the Glock
- Fifth place *t* with 1 vote – The Noisy Room – The Islamic Pharaoh Rises
- Fifth place *t* with 1 vote – VA Right! – Why The ‘Clinton Tax Rates’ Didn’t Create Prosperity in the 1990′s
- Sixth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Glittering Eye – “Balance Sheet” Or Not?
- Sixth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Independent Sentinel – A Moral Dilemma
- Sixth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Razor – Party Like It’s 1999? Why I’m All For it
- Sixth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Political Commentator – James Clapper – Why does this man still have a job in the Obama administration?
- Seventh place *t* with 1/3 vote – The Mellow Jihadi – I Am Guilty Of Stolen Valor
- *First place with 2 votes! – Sultan Knish – War Is The Answer submitted by The Noisy Room
- Second place with 1 2/3 votes – Mark Steyn – Jill Kelley For Secretary of State submitted by Joshuapundit
- Third place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – Barry Rubin – Lessons for the World From a New Gaza War submitted by Simply Jews
- Third place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – Holman W. Jenkins/WSJ – None Dare Call It Default submitted by The Watcher
- Third place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – Kausfiles – Krugman’s Twinkie Defense submitted by The Glittering Eye
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – Yid With Lid – Hamas: Killing Jews is worship of Allah submitted by VA Right!
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – Pat Condell – Peace In The Middle East submitted by The Right Planet
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – Quadrant Online – Doomed Planet submitted by Bookworm Room
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – Maggie’s Farm – Giving Tuesday submitted by The Mellow Jihadi
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – Right On The Left Coast – Must Be An Election Year submitted by Rhymes With Right
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – CNS News – One Third of Schools Receiving Stimulus-Funded ‘Student Improvement Grants’ Showed Declines submitted by The Independent Sentinel
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Taki’s Magazine – The Petrayal of Petraeus submitted by The Political Commentator
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Danger Room – Leon Panetta Has a Few More Drone Wars Ready to Go submitted by GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD
- Sixth place *t* with 1/3 vote – First Street Journal – Economics 101: A failure to understand submitted by The Colossus of Rhodey
See you next week! Don’t forget to tune in on Monday AM for this week’s Watcher’s Forum, as the Council and their invited guests take apart one of the provocative issues of the day and weigh in… don’t you dare miss it. And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!
By: Cliff Kincaid
Accuracy in Media
In his first public criticism of the conduct of the media during the presidential campaign, the chief strategist for Mitt Romney meekly suggests that reporters “often felt morally conflicted about being critical” of President Obama.
Obama “was a charismatic African American president with a billion dollars, no primary and media that often felt morally conflicted about being critical,” Stevens says.
But if this is all that Stuart Stevens takes away from the campaign coverage, he is woefully ill-informed about the nature of media bias. While it is certainly true that reporters didn’t want to criticize the first black President, Stevens’ comment doesn’t explain the intensity of the media attacks on Romney and the media cover-ups on Obama’s behalf.
Stevens wrote his piece defending Romney’s campaign for The Washington Post, one of the big guns of the liberal media establishment. Jennifer Rubin, a conservative blogger for the paper, points out that Stevens seems to blame everybody but himself for what went wrong with the campaign.
Stevens was undoubtedly one of the advisers who told Romney that he should avoid criticizing the press. We reported on this fact, noting Romney’s comments during the campaign that he had no plans to challenge liberal media bias and that he would get out his message through ads and other means.
In her criticism of Stevens, Rubin praises another Romney adviser, the lobbyist and former top Republican official Ed Gillespie, as a “class act,” when Gillespie had been explicitly quoted as justifying Romney’s silence on liberal media bias. Gillespie said the campaign had a “no whining rule” about media coverage.
Ironically, the statement of purpose on Gillespie’s website says, “A well conceived strategy is the central, cohesive element of any successful effort to achieve an important objective.” How can a Republican win the presidency without taking on press bias?
We know that Gillespie knows better, as we found a piece he wrote for National Review back in 2009 on liberal media bias. In the piece, subtitled, “How the GOP should handle increasingly biased journalists,” he writes that when he joined the Bush White House in June 2007, “I was still naively hopeful that we could get an honest hearing from the MSM [Mainstream Media]. It did not take long for the scales to fall from my eyes. The national press corps loathed the president—not personally, I don’t think, but politically. Their reporting dripped with disdain, and their stories were frequently riddled with negative adverbs and adjectives. On issues like the Iraq War, the environment, and life, there was often little distinction between our treatment in liberal blogs and our treatment in major daily newspapers.”
Some of Gillespie’s other points:
- “…the media will play the role of attack dog for Democrats, but not for Republicans. The media will stay on a negative story for days and continue pressing for answers when it involves a Republican.”
- The Left “perfected the cycle” of attack: “A blog posts an attack on a Republican candidate one day, the local daily paper runs a story two days later based on the blog account, and two days after that, a national Democratic campaign committee launches a “ripped from the headlines” attack ad citing the dailies. No Republican should be caught off-guard by this phenomenon again.”
- “…be willing to call out the media on instances of blatant bias….Reminding voters that the media often have their own agenda can help offset bias.”
- “…go around the traditional news outlets.”
It is intriguing that Gillespie disavowed his own very informative article by saying this year that the Romney campaign had adopted a “no whining rule” on media bias.
“Too many reporters no longer report; they comment,” Gillespie had said in National Review. “The lines between news and ‘news analysis,’ and between ‘news analysis’ and opinion, have been all but washed away in the 24/7 Internet-and-cable news environment.”
However, Gillespie went on to say that there are still “reporters who strive to be fair, report the facts, and avoid commentary,” and that “…one successful media outlet, the relatively new Politico, seems intent on hiring every ‘old school’ reporter in Washington.”
How wrong Gillespie turned out to be.
Politico is another gun in the liberal media arsenal and recently hired disgraced journalist David Chalian, who was fired by Yahoo! News for making a vicious “joke” during the campaign accusing the Romneys of hating black people. Several Politico reporters were members of the now-defunct listserv, JournoList, an association of several hundred liberal journalists, professors and activists who discussed story ideas and lines of attack on conservatives.
JournoList was started by Ezra Klein, while blogging for The American Prospect. He later took a position with The Washington Post, blogging about politics and writing articles.
At the September 21st AIM “ObamaNation” conference, Pat Caddell had urged the Romney campaign to go after liberal media bias and singled out Klein for criticism, saying, “Their organizations need to be called out. Ezra Klein still writes for The Washington Post? I mean, this is unbelievable! They had a secret operation group, ‘Journo’ group, online, coordinating how they would promote Obama, and how they would attack Republicans—and he’s still there?”
Not only is Klein still at the Post, he is said to be in the running to host a new show on MSNBC, the openly pro-Obama cable network.
The title of Gillespie’s National Review article was “Media Realism.” It looks like he didn’t follow his own advice. And Romney’s campaign suffered because of it.
Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at [email protected].
By: Roger Aronoff
Accuracy in Media
Once again, CBS’s Sharyl Attkisson is leading the way among mainstream journalists. The winner of this year’s Reed Irvine Award for Investigative Reporting is making the obvious point—that the Obama administration can’t seem to get its story straight about many aspects of Benghazi-Gate.
The issue on the table this week is why UN Ambassador Susan Rice was sent out to five Sunday talk shows on September 16th to explain what happened the previous Tuesday, September 11, in Benghazi, Libya, with talking points that proved to be false. Who asked her to be the administration spokesperson on the issue, and who changed the talking points to remove references to al Qaeda and terrorism that were in the original version from the CIA? This week, Rice was sent out, presumably to help rehabilitate her reputation before her expected nomination for Secretary of State, to replace Hillary Clinton in President Obama’s second term.
Attkisson pointed out, in an article titled “Who changed the Benghazi talking points?,” that “the question was first raised 12 days ago when former CIA Director General David Petraeus told members of Congress that his original talking points cleared for public dissemination included the likely involvement by terrorists and an al-Qaeda affiliate. Petraeus said somebody removed the references before they were used to inform the public.”
It turns out that Petraeus’ version of events changed from when he spoke to the Senate Intelligence Committee on September 13. At that time, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) was asked by Wolf Blitzer, shortly after hearing Petraeus’ explanation, “Does it look like this was a carefully planned operation that was in the works for a while? What’s the latest assessment on that?” Sen. Feinstein replied, “I can say that I’ve seen no evidence or no assessment that indicates it was. I can certainly say that. There was a protest. And it could well be that quickly some two dozen people took that as an opportunity to attack.”
Other reports had James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, making the changes himself. But later it turned out, as reported by The Cable, that they were said to be made by the Office of the DNI, but not by the DNI himself.
According to President Obama, speaking at his November 14th press conference, Rice made a “presentation based on intelligence that she had received,” and it was done “at the request of the White House.” Does that mean the White House cleared what she said?
When Ambassador Rice met on Tuesday of this week with three Republican senators who had expressed serious doubts about her ability and qualifications to become Secretary of State in light of her actions, she was accompanied by the Acting CIA Director, Mike Morrell, who told the senators that it was the FBI who had removed the references “to prevent compromising an ongoing criminal investigation.”
Then the story changed again. “But it was just a matter of hours before there was yet another revision,” wrote Attkisson. “A CIA official contacted [Sen. Lindsey] Graham and stated that Morell ‘misspoke’ in the earlier meeting and that it was, in fact, the CIA, not the FBI, that deleted the al Qaeda references. ‘They were unable to give a reason as to why,’ stated Graham.”
It is incredible that at this late date, more than two-and-a-half months after the Benghazi terrorist attack, the administration is so caught up in a web of lies that they could still be making errors like this. The Acting Director of the CIA cited the FBI as the party that made the changes, and even gave a rationale for it, and then later that day another CIA official claimed that Director Morrell “misspoke,” and it was in fact the CIA. This is “The gang that couldn’t shoot straight.”
To much of the rest of the media, this is still being treated as a partisan issue. Those questioning the administration’s line are painted as sore-loser Republicans, who are sexist and racist, picking on Ambassador Rice over a minor bit of miscommunication. Richard Wolffe, formerly of Newsweek, now editor of MSNBC.com, said that Sen. McCain was pursuing “a witch hunt” about “these people of color.” When asked if McCain was “being driven by racial prejudice,” Wolffe replied, “There is no other way to look at this…”
An article in Wednesday’s Washington Post said, “Rice came face to face with some of her harshest Republican critics, hoping to allay their concerns about whether she misled Americans regarding what precipitated the assault.” There is no longer an issue of “whether she misled.” The issues are why she misled, who was responsible, and who will be held accountable. It is clear the administration is covering up a scandal. Is the cover-up worse than the scandal? That remains to be seen.
Yet, as Attkisson pointed out, White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters on Tuesday, “I would simply say that there are no unanswered questions about Ambassador Rice’s appearances on Sunday shows, and the talking points that she used for those appearances that were provided by the intelligence community, those questions have been answered.”
She points out that President Obama indicated the same at his November 14 press conference: “We have provided every bit of information that we have, and we will continue to provide information…We will provide all the information that is available about what happened on that day…” and “I will put forward every bit of information that we have.”
Hopefully, other reporters will realize the importance of this story, and stay on it until the truth is known and people are held accountable.
Roger Aronoff is the Editor of Accuracy in Media, and can be contacted at [email protected].
By: Nelson Abdullah
Conscience of a Conservative
How Hostess is being divided up proves this was a government job.
You may have heard that Hostess Bakery plants shut down due to a workers’ strike. But you may not have heard how It was split up.
The State Department hired all the Twinkies, the Secret Service hired all the HoHos, the generals are sleeping with the Cupcakes and the voters sent all the Ding Dongs to Congress.
Author unknown, but whoever said this deserves a job on network news.
Hat Tip: BB
Hat Tip: BB