09/24/20

9/11 Remembered

By: Steve Emerson | CCNS

Nineteen years later, this day is still considered a watershed moment in the lives of hundreds of millions of Americans. We still remember the 2,977 innocent souls in New York, Washington D.C., and Pennsylvania who died at the hands of Islamic extremists operating underneath the loose radar and wide cracks dividing our law enforcement and intelligence agencies.

In those 19 years, we have tried to fix the scandalous technical holes and gaps that existed in the very agencies designed to protect us. Looking back, the FBI and Department of Homeland Security’s record stopping Islamist terrorist attacks—although far from perfect – has stymied the dreams of al-Qaida, ISIS, and others to execute an attack of a similar magnitude.

At the same time, there remains an unwillingness within the media, law enforcement, and other government agencies to speak candidly about the ideological motivation driving the threat – radical Islamism – and an unhealthy embrace of activist groups that whitewash that threat.

This country is playing with fire. For if you can’t even mention who your enemy is, then you will never defeat it. Yes, we all recognized what al-Qaida stands for and stated that it was our enemy. We defeated the core group and took out its leader. The same with ISIS.

After 9/11, I re-released my documentary, “Jihad in America: Terrorists Among Us” in memory of all those who perished. I chose today to release it on our website, as a reminder that the seeds of the attack were planted years before any hijackings. May the memories of those who perished on Sept. 11, 2001, and in all subsequent terrorist attacks, be forever remembered as our nation’s heroes.

Jihad in America: Terrorists Among Us –

This film tracks down a network of Islamic Extremists among us in New York, Boston, New Jersey, Texas, California, Oregon, Florida, and Kansas, detailing their hatred and violent intentions against Christians, moderate Muslims, and Jews in the United States.

Listen to Islamic radicals, telling their followers to carry our Jihad on U.S. soil.

See the fundraising structure in America that supports terrorists and the legitimization of radical Islamic groups. hiding behind “charitable” fronts.

This video is an educational call to action for the American public, to provide U.S. law enforcement authorities with the tools they need to deal with this real threat to the American way of life.

The Islamic extremists who promote and carry out Jihad, are as great a threat to moderate Muslims as they are to Christians, Jews, and to all Americans.

This article was originally published at The Investigative Project on Terrorism.

Steve Emerson is a member of the Citizens Commission on National Security.

09/22/20

The Prelude to World War II: The Spanish Civil War and Today’s America

By: Sam Jacobs | Ammo.com

The Prelude to World War II: The Spanish Civil War and Today's AmericaAmerica is definitely not Europe, but we can find a number of parallels between European history and contemporary America. For example, we’ve previously written about the Italian Years of Lead as a possible template for urban unrest and low-level inter-tribal warfare in the United States. Another example of how things might play out in the United States is the Spanish Civil War.

The Spanish Civil War is known to historians, amateur and professional alike, as the “dress rehearsal for the Second World War.” It is so termed because it pitted one side – which was equipped, armed, and funded by Europe’s fascist regimes (Germany and Italy) – against a government largely funded and propped up by the Soviet Union. However, it is worth noting that General Francisco Franco’s nationalist forces were not themselves fascist (though there were fascists within their ranks) and that Spain remained neutral during the Second World War, later becoming a close ally of the United States in the fight against Communism internationally.

While there are few perfect analogs to be found anywhere in world history, there are parallels between the contemporary domestic political situation in the United States and the period immediately before and during the Spanish Civil War. And while the situation in the United States might play out in a much similar way to the Spanish Civil War, it is worth noting that our previous Civil War was the bloodiest in human history. There is little doubt that a Second American Civil War would not be significantly more destructive.

Prologue: The Situation in Spain Prior to the Civil War

The Prelude to World War II: The Spanish Civil War and Today's AmericaAs we talk about the leadup to the Spanish Civil War, the situation will begin very much unlike modern-day America, however, it will become more like the contemporary domestic situation as time goes on.

The main difference, of course, is that Spain was a monarchy for almost all of its existence until 1931. A republic was briefly declared during the years 1873 and 1874, but it didn’t have much staying power and ultimately was not a transformative government in Spain. Following the First World War, the corrupt central government of Spain became increasingly unpopular and a military dictatorship, that of Miguel Primo de Rivera y Orbaneja, 2nd Marquess of Estella, 22nd Count of Sobremonte, arose. This fell in 1930, along with the abdication of the deeply unpopular King Alfonso XIII.

This led to the creation of the Second Spanish Republic and a new constitution in 1931. It was a radically leftist constitution in a largely conservative and Catholic country. Women’s suffrage, civil marriage, compulsory universal education, the nationalization of Catholic Church properties, the prohibition of Catholic religious orders from teaching in schools (and the Jesuit order entirely), as well as a provision allowing for the nationalization of any property that was for the “public good” were all components of the new Spanish constitution. In many ways, it resembled the constitution of Weimar Germany, in that it was an attempt by the left to radically remake a country through constitutional means.

The first election saw leftist elements firmly in the saddle, but the second, in 1933, was a major victory for forces of the right. However, because the conservative party had won a plurality in the parliament, and not a majority, the left-wing president of Spain invited the centrist party to form a government. Meanwhile, the socialist government alleged electoral fraud, which caused them to become further radicalized. On the ground, a radical working-class movement became hostile toward the ostensibly left-wing government after the movement was suppressed violently by the military.

Monarchist forces, with the explicit backing of Benito Mussolini and the implicit backing of King Alfonso XIII, as well as ideologically fascist forces led by José Antonio Primo de Rivera, began military drills, preparing for war. The streets of Spain became battlegrounds, with 330 assassinations, 213 failed assassination attempts, and 160 religious buildings destroyed, with arson being the primary means of their destruction. The Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party, formerly a fairly standard European social democratic party, began to cleave between forces who favored moderation and those who sought a more explicitly Bolshevik party.

The Coup d’Etat of July 1936

Much as the War Between the States began with the attack on Fort Sumter, so did the Spanish Civil War begin with the Coup d’Etat of July 1936. This was effectively an uprising by all forces of the Spanish right, which included two different factions of monarchists, nationalists, fascists (known in Spain as Falangists), and conservatives.

The igniting event was the election of 1936. This saw a very, very slim (less than 1 percent of the vote) victory of the Spanish left (socialists, communists, and anarchists) over the Spanish right. The right-wing in Spain stopped planning to take over the Spanish Republic and instead decided that they were going to overthrow it.

The central republican government of Spain was very weak and had been making attempts to purge suspect right-wing generals from its ranks. To that end, General Francisco Franco, who ended up becoming dictator of Spain until 1976, was removed from his office as chief of staff and put out to pasture in the Canary Islands. When the uprising began, the nationalist rebels had the unanimous support of the Army of Africa, a 30,000-strong force that boasted some of the hardest core soldiers Spain had to offer. Many of these troops were Muslims from Morocco, who had been told that the republic planned to outlaw the worship of Allah.

Indeed, Spanish Morocco was the base of operations for the rebels, with Generals Franco and Goded taking control of the Canary and the Balearic Islands, respectively. Any opposition in the Spanish colonial empire was quickly crushed with leading trade unionists and leftists simply executed by the rebel forces. The two trade union federations in Spain offered to help crush the uprising but were told that there was nothing to worry about as the uprising was confined to Morocco and other overseas possessions.

The coup was less than a rousing success for the nationalist rebels, who invaded from their overseas bases. They failed to capture any major cities, which remained significant bases of support for the republican government. The republican government remained in possession of the lion’s share of Spanish territory. However, the republican government was at a disadvantage for two reasons: First, the nationalists had split the territory of peninsular Spain in half, dividing the country between republicans in the north and south while they controlled the middle.

Second, the republican government responded to the crisis by effectively mobilizing the far left in Spain as shock troops to terrorize the population into submission. Communists in particular were unleashed to execute and torture anyone even suspected of being a nationalist sympathizer. It didn’t help that the clergy bore the brunt of this, with nuns gang-raped before being summarily executed. The republicans went so far as to exhume the bodies of dead religious figures and desecrate their corpses.

The Spanish Red Terror

The Prelude to World War II: The Spanish Civil War and Today's AmericaThe Spanish Civil War continues to have a sort of romantic quality among the left, many of whom see the Civil War-era republican government as an example of “real” socialism in action or, at the very least, something close to it. However, the Spanish Republican left was less bloody than their more famous Communist counterparts in Russia, China, and the Eastern Bloc only due to a lack of scale and a limited time frame on which they operated.

The Red Terror in Spain predates the nationalist rebellion and was, indeed, one of the primary motivations for the uprising. It is generally agreed that the Spanish Red Terror began during an Asturian miners’ strike in 1934. Priests and the religious were targeted in what was not simply a strike, but a rebellion against the government. Supporters of the rebellion targeted clergy and religious figures, resulting in the destruction of 58 churches and convents during a period of a little more than two weeks. Ironically, the rebellion was put down by Goded and Franco at the behest of the republican government.

Once the rebellion began, the Catholic Church – its clergy, its religious orders, and its lay faithful – were largely seen as fair game by supporters of the republic. The comparison between the Church in Spain 1936 and white Americans in 2020 isn’t much of a stretch. Much of the violence directed against the Church was predicated on the basis that they “deserved” this as payback for historical crimes. All told, 3,400 priests, monks, and nuns were murdered during the first two months of the Spanish Civil War. Indeed, most of the deaths during the early months of the Civil War were not because of deaths on the battlefield, but rather because of targeted executions against enemies of the Spanish Republic.

In addition to the atrocity against nuns, there were a number of horrific incidents mostly involving clergy. The parish priest of Navalmoral was forced to undergo a parody of the Passion of Christ, ending with a vigorous debate about whether or not to actually crucify the priest at the end. They “mercifully” decided to just shoot the man. The priest of Ciempozuelos was thrown to fighting bulls and had his ear cut off at the end of the spectacle. In Ciudad Real, a priest was castrated and had his penis and testicles put in his mouth. People were forced at gunpoint to swallow their own rosaries. Others were thrown down mine shafts or forced to dig their own graves prior to summary execution. A Madrid nun was executed for the crime of refusing a marriage proposal from a militiaman who had participated in the sacking of her convent.

All told, the Republicans destroyed over 20,000 churches and other religious sites during the war. Unsurprisingly, Spanish Catholics overwhelmingly supported the nationalist effort during the Civil War. Even among conservative allies of the republic (for example, conservative Catalan nationalists), support for the republican cause was lukewarm at best, thanks to the Spanish Red Terror.

The Red Terror’s victims are not limited to Catholics or nationalists. As the war progressed and the Communists came to have greater power in the republic (for example, when they were given the Interior Ministry and when the militias were put under centralized control), they also turned their fire on anarchists, socialists, and Trotskyists. This move against the non-Communist elements of the Spanish left is detailed in later chapters of George Orwell’s memoir, An Homage to Catalonia.

A Spanish White Terror?

Some attempts have been made to create an equivalence between the Red Terror in Spain and the Francoist repression at the end of the war. There certainly were atrocities committed by the Francoist forces during the course of the war. Indeed, it would be a bit strange if there weren’t, as such atrocities are a hallmark of modern warfare. Specifically, the Francoist forces engaged in war rape and frequently confiscated babies from republican women prior to their execution. These babies were then placed with Francoist families.

However, there are also some important differences between the terror engaged in by the Francoist forces and their republican adversaries. The Francoist repression wasn’t indiscriminately targeted at the friends, family, and acquaintances of anyone who fought on the republican side. It was directed squarely at people who had committed atrocities in the name of the republican regime. The large numbers run up by the Francoist forces aren’t a function of the bloodthirsty nature of the victorious nationalist forces – on the contrary, they were quite conciliatory and looking to get the country moving again after a highly destructive war. Rather, it’s because the atrocities committed by the republican forces during the Civil War were so widespread. Those executed generally received trials unlike those summarily executed by the republicans.

Forced labor was employed for projects such as draining swamps, digging canals, and building national railway systems. But again, it is worth noting that the people who were being conscripted for labor were considered criminals by the new regime. Indeed, any participation in the Popular Front government of the republic was criminalized by the Law of Political Responsibility, enacted two months after the end of the war. What’s more, this forced labor is not comparable to gulag labor where the intent was to work the victims to death.

As with any fight against Communist forces, it is worth asking a simple question: What would Spain have looked like if the Communists had won? We have ample examples of what Communist regimes look like – in Eastern Europe, in Asia, and in Latin America. There is little reason to believe that a Communist regime in Spain would not have been as bloodthirsty and ruthless as other Communist regimes. Indeed, the experience of the Civil War shows that a Spanish Communist regime would have been quite destructive and, it is fair to say, vindictive in its victory.

The Course of the War

The Prelude to World War II: The Spanish Civil War and Today's AmericaWithout getting too bogged down into the details of the war, the Civil War is largely the story of the nationalist forces winning victory after victory until the end of the war. This is largely because the republican military wasn’t centralized. Instead, most of the military decisions were delegated to individual autonomous militias who elected their own officers and operated on a democratic basis. Nationalist forces were unified under Franco very quickly, with everyone from conservatives to monarchists to fascists all forced to play nice in service of the nationalist cause. Such centralization did not come for the republicans until the very end of the war, and by then it was too little, too late – and also largely a power play by Moscow’s forces in the Communist Party.

The only major republican victory during the war was the Battle of Guadalajara. This was not a successful republican offensive, however – it was a successful repulsion of a nationalist attack. What’s more, the Republicans didn’t even defeat a Spanish military force. They were fighting instead primarily volunteers from fascist Italy. The main impact of this loss was that the nationalists stopped trying to end the war with one big battle and instead focused on chipping away at vulnerable parts of republican Spain.

In 1939, Catalonia, the strongest base of republican support, fell to the nationalists and it was mostly all over but for the shouting. While there were major cities still under the control of the republicans (such as the capital, Madrid), everything from here on out was largely a mop-up operation for the nationalists. The republican government was in total disarray and attempted to negotiate a peace settlement with Franco, but the Generalissimo would only accept an unconditional surrender from the republicans.

Franco declared victory in a radio address on April 1, 1939. Over 500,000 republicans fled to France, where they were largely held in squalid internment camps. Some stragglers continued to fight guerilla warfare against the Francoist government even into the 1950s, but there was no significant impact. In 1944, some republican veterans who had been fighting with the French Resistance attempted to invade Catalonia from France, but the attack was repelled within 10 days.

The Relevance of the Spanish Civil War Today

So what does a European civil war that ended 70 years ago have to do with anything going on in America today? A lot, actually.

First, there is the intense political polarization of the United States. A significant portion of the country champions changing the United States into a radical liberal nation with greater centralized control and a firm Constitutional commitment to leftist social justice causes. Another significant portion of the country is opposed to any further changes to the United States Constitution and is openly hostile toward leftist egalitarian principles.

What’s more, we are already beginning to see street battles not dissimilar to those that happened in Spain in the lead up to the Civil War. It is also worth noting that the anarcho-communist ideology, which held great sway among the partisans of the Second Spanish Republic, likewise informs the insurrectionary elements of the American left that began rioting and burning down American cities in the summer of 2020.

As we prepare for the 2020 Presidential election, it is clear that whoever loses will not only be unhappy with the results but will probably consider them to be illegitimate. On the left, there is the Russiagate hoax, the leftist conspiracy theory that alleges that the Russian intelligence services “stole” the election for President Donald Trump in 2016. On the right, there is the very reasonable fear that there will be a variety of electoral chicanery, including mass mail-in balloting, voting by dead people, voting by pets, voting by dead pets, and outright fabrication of ballots from largely Democratic-controlled urban areas in swing states. Indeed, a Bloomberg article seems to be preparing the American public for a stolen election, stating that while it might “appear” that Donald Trump will win reelection in a landslide the night of the election, that further months and weeks will reveal that he did not, in fact, win as the aforementioned mail-in ballots come in.

An article from the Washington Post states that any outcome but a Biden landslide will result in massive violence and civil unrest. While Jeff Bezos’ vanity blog certainly has their reasons for promoting this notion, it’s not entirely without merit. If the president is reelected, no matter how big the margin, there will likely be another wave of urban unrest that will dwarf the events of the summer of 2020. If Biden wins by a slim margin, there will be accusations of fraud and likely more confrontations in the streets, albeit more two-sided. It seems that the only result that would be accepted as “legitimate,” particularly by the press and the American left, is one where Biden wins dramatically.

It is worth briefly considering the other side of the equation. The American Conservative ran a column in July 2020 discussing the very real phenomenon of the American right’s increasing impatience not with democracy, but with liberalism. This is a phenomenon known as “illiberal democracy,” where the forms of democracy persist but are used for anti-liberal means. Put in simple terms: How many on the American right – even the mainstream American right – would be terribly bothered by the president taking extreme action against an insurrectionary left?

No one has a crystal ball to see the future. However, it is not a wild assertion to suggest that the real violence in America is coming after the election.

09/18/20

Trump Announces 1776 Commission

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Patriotism, factual history, and civics could make a comeback in the educational system. FINALLY and one must remember civics was replaced in the public school system with ‘social studies’. What are social studies anyway and does it really teach about the founding documents, the Founders themselves, the structure of government, and fundamental natural law? Yeah, not so much. There are countless politicians that need refresher courses and most media does as well.

File:The Second Continental Congress voting independence ...

President Donald Trump announced on Thursday he would sign a new executive order establishing the “1776 Commission” to promote patriotic education. The commission will counter the revisionist history peddled by leftist efforts like the New York Times’ 1619 Project, which imposes false narratives on America’s students.

“The narratives about America being pushed by the far left and being chanted in the streets bear a striking resemblance to the anti-American propaganda of our adversaries,” Trump said in remarks during the White House Conference on American History at the National Archives. He further described the 1619 Project—a collection of essays that cast America as an irredeemably racist empire built solely to oppress minorities—as “ideological poison.”

Earlier this year, China successfully weaponized American wokeness to drive divisions deeper in the U.S., seeking to evade responsibility for the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak by complaining that any term linking the virus to its Chinese origins was racist. Woke reporters soon complied with Beijing’s orders and began badgering the president repeatedly on his use of terms consistent with the naming of new diseases.

“Critical race theory, the 1619 Project, and the crusade against American history is toxic propaganda,” Trump said, “that if not removed, will dissolve the civic bonds that tie us together. It will destroy our country.”

Trump’s announcement marks the latest example of the White House’s decision to engage substantively in the culture war, coming less than two weeks after the administration banned critical race theory training at federal agencies.

The new 1776 Commission, Trump said, “will encourage our educators to teach our children about the miracle of American history and make plans to honor the 250th anniversary of our founding.”

Several Republican House members also ramped up their efforts to counter the 1619 Project, which has already infected K-12 curriculums in some 4,500 classrooms. Earlier Thursday, Reps. Ken Buck of Colorado and Rick Allen of Georgia introduced the House companion bill to legislation from Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton that would bar federal funding from schools incorporating the 1619 Project in their curriculums.

Launched last year, the progressive project spearheaded by the Times’ riot-cheering Nikole Hannah-Jones (who won a Pulitzer for the project’s opening essay, even though it required a major correction) has made its way into the classrooms of major schools districts such as Chicago and Washington D.C.

Watch a short documentary debunking the project here:


09/10/20

Geopolitics: How Maps Help Us Understand History, Predict the Future, and Go Beyond Politics

By: Brian Miller | Ammo.com

Geopolitics: How Maps Help Us Understand History, Predict the Future, and Go Beyond Politics“It is not often that nations learn from the past, even rarer that they draw the correct conclusions from it.”

American students are notoriously bad at geography and have been for some time. In 2002, for instance – the year after the 9/11 attacks – only 17% of American students could find Afghanistan on a map. In 2016, less than one third were able to score a minimal pass of 66% on the National Geographic Global Literacy Survey. In 2015, the United States Government Accountability Office reported that 75% of eighth-grade students don’t even know what geography is.

Picture your old-school geography class. More likely than not, it was a boring subject requiring rote memorization of global factoids, U.S. state names, and their capitals. This does American students a disservice, because an appreciation for the hidden power of geography helps one make sense of seemingly random historical tidbits, more accurately predict the future, and see beyond political rhetoric to what actually matters among nation-states.

When contemplating geography’s usefulness in better understanding our world, consider the following:

  1. Why is it important to the state to get a handle on its subjects and their environments, i.e., through long-established practices like land registries and the creation of permanent last names? Or more recent examples such as the census bureau, the passport system, the DMV, birth and death certificates, or just registering to vote?
  2. Why is the state seemingly always the enemy of “people who move around,” i.e., nomads and pastoralists, hunter-gatherers, Gypsies, vagrants, homeless people, itinerants, runaway slaves, and serfs? All have always been a thorn in the side of the state, and efforts to permanently settle these mobile peoples seem to rarely succeed.

The answers to these questions are straightforward when the classic imperatives of the state are known – and these are taxation, conscription, and the prevention of rebellion.

In order to satisfy these imperatives, the state has to know as much as possible about its inhabitants, and it wants them to be sedentary. You can’t tax what you can’t measure. You can’t draft someone to fight if you don’t know they exist. And you can’t stop a rebellion if you don’t know those who seek to overthrow your order.

As a result of these imperatives, accurate maps of the land and the people that occupy it are necessary for the survival of the state. And what’s in those maps is as important as what’s excluded from them.

Geography’s raison d’etre is straightforward: to write about, describe, or better understand patterns and processes on Earth. It’s not just maps and state capitals, nor is it simply the creation of maps (that’s cartography).

Thus, when the hidden power of geography is appreciated – especially as it relates to the state’s imperatives – conflicts between competing states as well as the relationship between the state and the individual begins to make more sense.

Early Geography: The Printing Press and “Imagined Communities”

Geopolitics: How Maps Help Us Understand History, Predict the Future, and Go Beyond PoliticsTo begin with a basic concept of geographic history, it’s important to consider the difference between a nation and a state. It is common today for the term “nation” and “country” to mean the same thing, but in geography, “country” actually means “state” and the term “nation” is defined by a shared identity among a large population within a state.

This shared identity is what Benedict Anderson referred to as “imagined communities.” These communities of the imagination had early relationships with the invention of the printing press, which allowed people (other than elites) to have easier access to both maps and literature. Such publications contributed to standardizing languages, which allowed a variety of cultures to understand not only each other but also the maps that explained the world.

The printing press contributed to standardizing the histories of the past so that many different cultures began to remember (and forget) the same things. According to Anderson, communities became imagined because people of even the smallest nations will never know or interact with the majority of people in that country. Yet, the majority will have an understanding of their shared histories.

From the Western perspective, the early history of geography has its origins during the Middle Ages. European travelers would explore beyond the edge of known territory and map their observations of different places, races, and cultures. A common similarity of these early written accounts was that different types of climate were thought to be a defining factor for how races and cultures were different from the European traveler.

These early accounts were written from the perspective that European travelers were normal, and all non-Europeans were then defined by their difference. This is to say that according to these written accounts, Europeans were the reference point for what was normal and right.

During this period, the climates of the world were classified by three types: frigid (very cold), temperate (just right), and torrid (very hot). The frigid climate was thought to be too cold for people while the torrid climate was too hot. This understanding of the climate is why, for example, Ethiopians were thought to have lived too close to the sun, and that their skin was burnt black as a result – an observation considered a scientific fact because the European traveler was able to see it with their own eyes and then write about it.

An important aspect of these early written accounts was that as new cultures, terrain and races were “discovered,” they were often described as monsters from inhospitable lands. These monsters were commonly written about and became a source of both myth and legend. Such legends told of monstrous beings at the edge of where the known and unknown territories meet.

As these early Europeans embarked on new expeditions, each exploring further than the last, the unknown territories became known, but the monsters were always pushed further to the edge of the updated maps. According to Joanne Sharp, this pattern was a result of two factors.

First, the Europeans had a need to define their territory with myths and legends of the unknown monster because this was a defining factor for European identity. This is to say that an identity is not only based on how people are similar but also how people are thought of as different.

The second factor was that for the earliest explorers during this time period, first contact and interaction with new cultures did generate fear. Sharp noted:

“Practices of lip stretching and yoga could seem like distorted bodies to the first travelers; warriors’ use of colorful shields might look – from a distance – like faces on their chests; and non-European languages could sound very alien to travelers.”

It was through these early expeditions that the Middle-Aged maps of the world had a large influence on how people understood that world, and their place in it.

Roots of Geopolitics: From the Monarchy to the State

The transition from the Middle Ages to the 17th century is not marked by a single event, but rather several events over long periods of time. One of the more discussed events was the transition from the monarchy to state sovereignty, a move that marks the early origin of geopolitics.

From 1618 to 1648, one of the most destructive wars in history was waged in Central Europe. At its end, the “Thirty Years’ War” marked the creation of state sovereignty with the “Peace of Westphalia” settlement in 1648. This peace settlement defined territories by state sovereignty rather than a territory, and everything in it, owned solely by the monarchy. Sovereignty is the cornerstone of statehood and is defined by four basic principles:

  • Defined boundaries of state territory.
  • A government structure with absolute authority over internal and external affairs.
  • Recognition by other states.
  • A permanent population in that territory.

An important aspect of state sovereignty was that the population of a territory was no longer the property of the monarchy. A state relies on its territory as the source for political organization, but this became problematic because people who lived in those territories also had newfound freedom. They were no longer serfs or considered property owned by the king but now viewed as citizens of the sovereign state.

Similar to the previous example about monster myths being a political tool toward defining a European identity during the Middle Ages, maps and supporting literature played an essential role in not only marking a state’s territory but also the imagined community of people inside and outside of that territory.

Prior to the rise of state sovereignty, loyalty to the monarchy could be an issue, and more so for the kings’ armies. It was not uncommon for these early armies to be made up of thieves and vagabonds as well as contracted mercenaries. These types of soldiers had little to no loyalty to the king, which was problematic for several reasons, one of which was because they were armed. Following the 1648 peace settlement, loyalty became tied to nationalism and the country.

This was an important development because, as mentioned, defining an identity resulted from shared similarities as well as differences. The expansion of territory through war could be more easily acceptable to the soldier if the enemy was different. However, when the enemy looked more like a friend, as can be found in any historical example of dueling Christian armies, the power of the state together with the nation changed the notion of territorial expansion from the “sport of kings” to a clash between nations.

Geopolitics, Social Darwinism, State Survival, and “Lebensraum”

Geopolitics: How Maps Help Us Understand History, Predict the Future, and Go Beyond PoliticsThese histories serve as a simplified starting point for understanding geopolitics, and the types of influences that are embedded in the concept. With state sovereignty came the dominant understanding that a state’s purpose was that of survival. Said differently, states were seen to always be in competition with different states.

In the late 19th century, Charles Darwin’s theory of natural selection was being applied by scholars to the study of societies (Social Darwinism). German geographer, Friedrich Ratzel, applied Darwin’s natural selection theory to state sovereignty (particularly Germany), and together the concept became known as the “Organic Theory of the State.”

The foundation of Ratzel’s theory was that states interact with different states through the “survival of the fittest” perspective and that a state must grow through territorial expansion in order to thrive.

The implementation of this theory had a particular consequence. Ratzel’s theory of state survival is said to have legitimized “continual war of all against all, as each country must seek the path of the least resistance to territorial expansion and must simultaneously defend its territory at all costs.”

The term “geopolitics” was coined by Swedish political scientist Rudolf Kjellen (a student of Ratzel’s) in 1899 and inspired an intellectual movement between German and Scandinavian scholars. This movement, supported by the “science” of geopolitics, resulted in a veneer of legitimacy that a state, and its nation, should be viewed as combined elements that together produce a stronger effect.

Ratzel envisioned the nation and state relationship as a “super-organism” whose strength was determined by the size of its territory, population, and the availability of natural resources. Ratzel further published The Sea as a Source of Greatness of a People in 1901 and identified ways in which the land and sea provide opportunity for expansion. This work introduced the concept “Lebensraum,” translated to mean “living space,” which argued that stronger states would naturally take territory and resources from weaker states.

Prior to World War I, Ratzel and Kjellen’s work contributed to the idea that Germany was the “land of geographers,” as German universities were among the first to teach geography. This renewed interest, supported by such geopolitical theories, positioned geography as the “god’s eye view” of how the world “really” worked.

The Nazi Connection: Geopolitk and Hitler’s “Mein Kampf”

The relationship between geopolitics and the rise of the Nazi party is accredited to political geographer Karl Haushofer. Prior to Haushofer’s career in “Geopolitik,” he was active German military who spent time in Japan studying their armed forces between 1908 and 1910. Haushofer’s interaction with both military officials and scholars during that time would later be accredited to the rise of geopolitical institutions in Japan during the 1920s and 1930s. His influence would also stretch as far as South America.

Following World War I, Haushofer retired as a major general in 1919 and took a professor position teaching geography at the University of Munich. Haushofer, like Ratzel before him, believed that German greatness was dependent upon Lebensraum:

“If the state was to prosper rather than just survive, the acquisition of ‘living space,’ particularly in the East, was vital and moreover achievable with the help of potential allies such as Italy and Japan.”

According to Haushofer, if Germany was to grow into a world power, and rebound from the losses of the WWI defeat, its leadership would need to be thoughtful of five essential elements:

  • Physical location
  • Resources
  • Territory
  • Morphology
  • Population

Haushofer’s own geopolitical theories promoted the concept of “pan regions,” which argued that Germany and other state powers, such as Japan, should develop distinct geopolitical strategies that focus on separate regions. To do so was to carve up the map and become neighbors in world domination rather than interfering within each state’s territory of interest. For Haushofer, his geopolitical focus was to the East and Africa.

Following the Beer Hall Putsch of 1923, Rudolf Hess (Hitler’s personal secretary, and one of five people who held key positions in the Nazi party), was arrested and imprisoned for participating in the failed coup against the Weimar Republic. Hess was a former student of Haushofer, and it was this relationship that would lead Haushofer to visit Hess in prison, thus becoming introduced to Hitler.

As we are familiar, Hitler authored Mein Kampf while in prison, and the work draws from the theory of Lebensraum (living space) to support Hitler’s vision of German destiny, territorial expansion, and “the master race.”

Some common misconceptions around this history (especially in America) are that Haushofer was thought to be the intellectual powerhouse behind Hitler’s ambition of territorial expansion and genocide. It is true that Haushofer was highly influential with ambitions of territorial expansion, but it was Hitler who placed the far greater emphasis on the identity of people – i.e., the master race vs. the Jewish monster.

Haushofer was never a Nazi himself, and his son had been executed in 1945 for his role in a bomb plot to assassinate Hitler the year prior. With the learning of his son’s role in the assassination attempt, Haushofer would commit suicide in 1946.

It is also a misconception that Hitler manifested the hatred of the Jewish people on his own. This claim is not to undermine Hitler’s role in the atrocities of WWII, but it is useful to explore the longer history of persecution and violence against Jewish people in this part of the world long before Hitler was born. In this way, it becomes more useful for understanding geopolitical concepts to recognize the ways in which Hitler “tapped” into preexisting prejudices and manipulated identities to justify territorial expansion and genocide.

The Decline of Geopolitics

Geopolitics: How Maps Help Us Understand History, Predict the Future, and Go Beyond PoliticsThere were several theoretical and scientific concepts that shaped the thoughts of world leaders leading up to and during WWII that are commonly associated with the Third Reich. Some examples include propaganda (Himmler), the systematic approach to genocide (Fordism), and eugenics to only name a few. However, none of these examples originated with the Nazis, and geopolitics is no exception.

Geopolitics did play an integral role in the rise of the Third Reich, but following the Allied victory of WWII, geopolitics was seen as an “intellectual poison.” With few exceptions after 1945, geopolitics was tainted with Nazism and lost credibility in the United States, Britain, Russia, Japan, and other parts of Europe.

In relation to Haushofer’s early influence stretching to South America, Lebensraum and theories of the organic state were alive and well in South American military strategy post-WWII. Geopolitics later reemerged in the West during the 1970s, due to Henry Kissinger making sense of the Cold War.

The focus of this article is only a small snapshot of particular geography and its history in relation to a single geopolitical theory. Other influential theories around this period include U.S. Admiral Thomas Mahan’s classic on sea power, and Halford Mackinder’s “The Heartland Theory.

Mahan’s theory on sea power suggested that the Navy was the most important factor in projecting state power (Japan found this useful), and Mackinder believed that world power was not obtainable through the sea, but through the control of the Eurasian landmass with the anticipation of a rising Russian power.

There are also many other political geographies that justify the use of violence that include imperialism, both British and Spanish colonialism, and even earlier empires. Our focus here is only one of many examples. However, there are some important geographic concepts that can be taken away from this.

The Hidden Power of Maps: What’s Included (and What’s Not)

Maps are an important aspect of geography, and they all have hidden forms of power. As can be found in the earlier discussion of “imagined geographies,” it’s important to be aware that all maps (the same goes for all media today) have a creator that – either knowingly or unknowingly – projects what they value and find important onto their creation.

As such, it is always useful to be aware of what types of places, history, or knowledge is not on a particular map. While we know that what is on a map is certainly useful, what is not on a map can be much more important if we are interested in charting a course to better understand the power of geopolitics.

Environmental Determinism: From Ancient Greece to Rural Appalachia

A common theme embedded in these early geopolitical theories is traced back to the Greeks, who speculated that human behavior is shaped directly by climate and geographic location. This type of thought is known as environmental determinism. Scholars who take a deterministic view suggest that intellectual advancement in Greece was a result of the mountainous landscape that inspired “loftier thoughts.” The same concept has been applied in America because our wide-open plains inspire people to “think big.”

If only human behavior was this simple. The problem with the environmental deterministic view is that it suffers from a lack of attention to types of government structure, laws, history, social dynamics, coercion, violence, and types of technology that also shape human behavior. While the environment does play a part, it is only a small part of a much larger process of how human behavior is shaped. Not to mention that today, the environment is no longer understood as “nature” or the “natural” world, but also includes human-built environments (urban spaces). When clearly defined, environmental determinism is too simple of an explanation to be useful.

As an example, the American southern accent (think the TV show “Hee Haw”) can often be associated with the thought that rural people are unintelligent. However, as can be found in the work of John Gaventa, this common stereotype has its origins in a corporation violently exploiting people in the Appalachian Valley and framing their culture as too simple-minded to understand capitalism. This example is interesting in several ways because Appalachia is mountainous, but the “loftier thoughts” that attempt to explain how the Greeks were intellectually advanced is absent in this context.

Perhaps a more recent example of environmental determinism can be found in this news article that attempts to describe “white nationalism” as a characteristic of all firearm owners. According to this narrative, people who own firearms are white, violent, and are said to be on a level similar to Islamist extremists. As we know, there are many different cultures and races that understand the importance of firearm ownership.

However, this current narrative is geopolitical at its core and has elements of every concept contained within this article. We have imagined geographies (includes both shared and forgotten histories), a strong emphasis of identity (us vs. them), a stripped-down version of Lebensraum (tying up the nation and the state for ideological expansion, rather than geographical), and the environmental deterministic view that attempts to simplify and single out a particular race.

It should also be noted that environmental determinism is commonly discussed in ways that focus on how non-white races are repressed. Many of those discussions are absolutely valid and true. Nevertheless, our focus here is not to marginalize those repressions, but rather highlight how such deterministic views do not discriminate in their political use. Environmental determinism has impacted all races and cultures in one way or another.

Applying Geography

Geopolitics: How Maps Help Us Understand History, Predict the Future, and Go Beyond PoliticsAt the outset, we posed the question: Why do so many people not know what geography is all about? The answer to that question is perhaps because geography has such a long and violent history in the project of state creation and civilization.

Thus understanding the value of geography helps us see the state’s imperatives – taxation, conscription, and the prevention of rebellion – for what they are. It also helps each of us better orient our relationship to the state: What information we divulge to it, whether that be for a gun background check or an income tax return. What state policies (up to and including war) we support. And why politicians say one thing and regularly do another.

Geography also provides an opportunity to place seemingly random histories under a microscope – to question and better understand why certain patterns and processes shape how we understand the world, and our place in it.

While some believe that geopolitics declined following WWII, later re-emerged and declined yet again with the Cold War, geopolitics is very much alive and well today. The maps of the world are still being carved up, and states are still in competition with one another either overtly or in more subtle ways.

For American foreign policy, in particular, this is evidenced where the U.S. military maintains foreign bases, to whom the military-industrial complex is permitted to sell American-made weapons, why Washington orders drone strikes in certain places and not others, among many others.

Geography can certainly provide a clearer understanding of potential futures because states have been playing by the same basic rules since the rise of state sovereignty in 1648. The better we can understand these geographic histories and the maps that define them, the better equipped we become at making sense of seemingly random occurrences throughout the world.

09/5/20

Irregulars and Militias – Are Militias Still Legal in Texas?

By: T.F. Stern | Self-Educated American

(Image: The Concord Minute Man of 1775, a monument created by Daniel Chester French)

The most uncomplicated definition of Militia – military force composed of ordinary citizens.

The question has been asked, “Are Militia groups legal in the State of Texas”?

“From 1903 to present, following the Militia Act of 1903, the Texas Militia is legally empowered by Title 32 of the United States Code and Article 4, Section 7 of the Constitution of the State of Texas to “execute the laws of the state, to suppress insurrections, and to repel invasions”.

Wikipedia addressed the topic of Unorganized Reserve Militia as follows:

“Militias thus can be either military or paramilitary, depending on the instance. Some of the contexts in which the term “militia” can apply include: forces engaged in a defense activity or service, to protect a community, its territory, property, and laws, the entire able-bodied population of a community, town, county, or state available to be called to arms…

a private (non-governmental) force not necessarily directly supported or sanctioned by its government, (emphasis added)

an irregular armed force that enables its leader to exercise military, economic, or political control over a subnational territory within a sovereign state, an official reserve army composed of citizen soldiers known as the militsiya, a select militia composed of a small, non-representative portion of the population…

The definition is wide open for interpretation; however, that one line, “a private (non-governmental) force not necessarily directly supported or sanctioned by its government”, leaves such an interpretation up to the individual rather than leaving that interpretation up to the government.

Wikipedia went on to include:

“Within the United States, since approximately 1992, there have been a number of private organizations that call themselves militia or unorganized militia.  In states such as Texas, the state constitution classifies male citizens between the ages of 17 and 45 to belong to the “Unorganized Reserve Militia”.  The Texas constitution also grants the county sheriff and the governor of the state the authority to call upon the unorganized reserve militia to uphold the peace, repel invasion, and suppress rebellion, similar to the early “Texas Rangers”.”

It should be noted that the age limitation mentioned as 17 to 45 represent those individuals who can be drafted according to the mandates of the Governor of the State of Texas; however it does not preclude the involvement of individuals who are younger than 17 or older than 45 from being able to serve voluntarily if they so desire.

Other points of interest brought out through further links provided include the following statement:

“Most militia organizations envisage themselves as legally legitimate organizations authorized under constitutional and statute law, with reference to state and federal law of an “unorganized militia”.  Others subscribe to the “insurrection theory” which describes the right of the body politic to rebel against the established government in the face of tyranny. (In the 1951 case Dennis v. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected the insurrection theory, stating that as long as the government provides for free elections and trials by jury, “political self-defense” cannot be undertaken.)”

Bare in mind much of the article related to militia groups focused on those groups formed to respond against governmental tyranny, real or perceived rather than on citizen groups organized to maintain law and order being threatened by domestic terrorists such as Antifa and/or BLM thugs.

So…If a group of local citizens living in a small community organized themselves into an Unorganized Militia for the purpose of defending their lives and property from those who would violate the laws of the State of Texas, such a non-sanctioned group would be within their Second Amendment Rights as protected by our Constitution’s Bill of Rights. Since their militia does not fall into the “insurrection theory” aspect alluded to in the above paragraph, that portion does not apply (even though the Supreme Court got that one wrong; but that’s a whole other article).

The Lone Star Watchmen Militia is an unorganized militia group in Texas which apparently fits the legal parameters which other communities might consider as they work to protect each other’s lives and property.  The following was copied from their website:

“Lone star Watchmen is a Texas Mutual Defense Group. We are Second Amendment based (first and foremost) and are sworn supporters of the United States Constitution and the Texas Constitution. Our Mission is clearly defined as providing for the protection and survival of our families, communities and ultimately Texas through medical, tactical support/security and survival training.

First and foremost we are your average American citizens. We are your citizen soldiers who are always ready to serve.  We are doctors and lawyers; firemen, EMT and police; teachers and tradesmen; retirees and young families like everyone else in your local community.  We come together as a group united by our moral beliefs, and our loyalty to our Constitution and Texas. We live by and support what the Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights decrees.

We are not revolutionaries. We are not a hate group. We are not Anti-Government. We are, however, in favor of promoting education and resources for the protection against Tyranny and the corruption of Government officials, bad and unconstitutional legislation.

The word Militia has been linked to many negative groups in the past so now is a good time to learn the truth. We are not a militia- because you are already a part of the Militia.

Everyone is welcome regardless of age, race, religion, gender or political affiliation provided you believe in our great country and the Constitution being the supreme law of our land.  We are a diverse group of ordinary citizens with a love for our Country and for Texas.  We promote the Constitution as a way of life and the only medium for our lives.  Our forefathers fought for us to have this Constitution and we will carry the torch of liberty they lit for us and our future generations.”

That should be enough information to validate the legality of forming a militia group as long as their stated purpose is to uphold the Constitution and Laws of the State of Texas.


t-f-stern-1Self-Educated American, Senior Edi­tor, T.F. Stern is both a retired City of Hous­ton police offi­cer and, most recently, a retired self-employed lock­smith (after serving that industry for 40 plus years). He is also a gifted polit­i­cal and social com­men­ta­tor. His pop­u­lar and insight­ful blog, T.F. Sterns Rant­i­ngs, has been up and at it since January of 2005.

08/24/20

Purging the Evil Legacy of Karl Marx

By: Cliff Kincaid

The shocking new Paul Kengor book, The Devil and Karl Marx doesn’t carry the same nerve-wracking impact as the much-shorter book with the provocative title, Was Karl Marx a Satanist? but the message is still the same. The “progressive” ideas let loose on the world by the father of communism are based on the otherworldly powers of darkness that Karl Marx personally embraced.

With a presidential election approaching, and with Democratic Party candidate Joe Biden declaring, “I will be an ally of the light, not the darkness,” the Kengor book looks at the actual forces of darkness operating in the world today. His publisher is TAN Books, which is also distributing,  A Catholic Vote for Trump: The Only Choice in 2020 for Republicans, Democrats, and Independents Alike, making the case for the reelection of President Trump.

Interestingly, Biden’s phrase, “I will be an ally of the light, not the darkness,” was the headline about the speech from the Communist People’s World.

The objectives of Karl Marx, who even wrote poetry about the attraction of evil, were to destroy lives and cause human suffering on a massive scale. He was determined to take down the world with him, and he has succeeded to a great degree. America is now his target from the pit of hell.

In contrast to God’s message of love, found in the Christian Gospel, the Communist Manifesto appealed to the worst in people and was a plan to divide and conquer nations through instilling fear, envy, and hate. Out of the chaos, Marx argued to the intellectually gullible and power-hungry elites, a world communist system of peace and plenty would emerge.

The result, so far, is more than 100 million dead, with Communist China claiming “credit” for 65 million of those deaths and an additional 400 million dead in China through the abortion genocide (as documented in the Global Life Campaign report about the death toll of aborted babies having reached one billion worldwide.) The slaughter goes on.

The Marxist “success,” from the viewpoint of Satan, is not over, as America goes through a revolutionary phase, unique in our history, and the Democratic Party openly promotes Marxist Black Lives Matter policies of racial hatred and destruction of the traditional family.

In this context, Kengor’s spiritual examination of Marxism is long overdue, in the sense that Was Karl Marx a Satanist? by Pastor Richard Wurmbrand was written 44 years ago and needed to be updated. Wurmbrand’s book made a persuasive case that Marx practiced Satanism and had made an actual pact with the devil. Kengor doesn’t quite go that far.

On a personal level, Kengor documents that Marx was a mentally sick individual whose family was infected and affected by his own sins, before he expanded this sickness into the world at large, beginning with the Russian revolution of 1917. A parasite and leech, Marx begged others for living expenses so he could continue to write his incendiary tracts, eventually forcing two of his daughters into a death spiral ending in suicide.

In the current political context, the Kengor book assumes major importance, not only because it confirms much of what Wurmbrand uncovered about the evil nature of Karl Marx personally, but because it identifies the modern-day movements and philosophies, such as LGBTQ ideology, that are Marxist in orientation and outlook. Kengor’s academic treatment of the subject includes original sources and documents.

One section examines Harry Hay, founder of the gay rights movement in America and someone as sick as Marx. A Stalinist and Marxist until the day he died, he defended the participation of NAMBLA (the North American Man-Boy Love Association) in “gay rights” marches. He was under FBI surveillance as an internal security threat but, ironically, the FBI now celebrates its own gay and transgender agents.

Under Barack Hussein Obama, Hay was cited as an “inspiration” by longtime homosexual activist Kevin Jennings, appointed as the nation’s “safe schools czar” at the U.S. Department of Education. Jennings founded and was the executive director of, the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), a group promoting homosexuality in schools. Jill Biden, the wife of Obama Vice President and 2020 Democratic Party presidential candidate Joe Biden, gave the keynote address at GLSEN’s annual awards banquet in 2009.

From my perspective, using Kengor’s trenchant analysis, Marxism seems to be the ultimate exercise in the philosophy of hate, in direct opposition to the Ten Commandments of the Judeo-Christian tradition. Marx himself hated God and the humans he created.  Similarly, Harry Hay hated God’s plan for humanity as well, for he, too, rejected the idea of the traditional family, leading to much of the sexual confusion and exploitation of adults and children as sex objects we see today. Hay divorced his wife, left his family behind, and embraced occultism.

With this and other examples, Kengor shows that Marxism is not a philosophy to lift people up but to destroy their common humanity, traditional morality, and God-given right to a better life.

What Kengor’s book also shows is that Marxism is a virus that is worse in its human carnage than the China-made coronavirus, still ravaging the world and its people. To paraphrase 2020 Democratic Party vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris, who said there is no vaccine for racism, there is no vaccine for the virus of Marxism. Kengor’s book and subsequent column in The American Spectator examine Marx’s racist and anti-Semitic views. But his book as a whole is an analysis of the impact this philosophy of hate has had on people of all religions, ethnic backgrounds, and nationalities.

The only antidote is morally healthy living based on Biblical standards, something increasingly out of fashion in our secularized world. With Christian standards under systematic assault, another imperative is organizing politically to save one’s family and nation.

One chapter in Kengor’s book, “The Specter of the Frankfurt School,” examines the influence of Cultural Marxism. Modern-day Marxists, he notes, are “all about culture and sex.” With sex scandals like that of the Jeffrey Epstein network, possibly linked to various intelligence agencies, and the pedophile priest cover-ups crippling the Roman Catholic Church, our nation is facing an unprecedented challenge of moral corruption at the highest levels of American society. Yet, it’s business as usual for many, as Epstein associate Bill Clinton, the former president caught in a sex scandal with a former White House intern, was a featured speaker at the recent Democratic Party national convention.

Kengor explains, “The Frankfurt School protegés were neo-Marxists, a new kind of twentieth-century communist less interested in the economic/class ideas of Marx than a remaking of society through the eradication of traditional norms and institutions.” He added, “Rather than organize the workers and the factories, the peasants and the fields and the farms, they would organize the intellectuals and the academy, the artists and the media and the film industry. These would be the conveyor belts to deliver the fundamental transformation.”

In this regard, an important book, The Health Hazards of Homosexuality, has suddenly been dropped by Amazon. The pro-family publisher, MassResistance, reports, “Amazon has determined that a book documenting the health hazards of homosexual behavior is ‘offensive’ and must not be allowed to be published. But in fact, Amazon is a cesspool of pornography and perversion.” It cites various pornographic publications, some targeting young people, that are currently available and which advocate strange, bizarre, and dangerous sexual practices.

Amazon is owned by Jeff Bezos, who also owns the Washington Post, one of the most toxic papers on the political scene today and home to occultist Sally Quinn, its former religion writer who was married to long-time executive editor Ben Bradlee. The Post specializes in trying to overthrow conservative Republican presidents, from Nixon to Reagan and Trump.

The made-up “controversy” over a factual book about homosexuality demonstrates how Marxist tendencies are at work in corporate America and put into practice by capitalist billionaires. Bezos was exposed sending a photograph of his genitals to his mistress, a sleazy scandal that resulted in his divorce, leaving behind a wife and children. He is apparently open to different forms of sexual experimentation.

His paper, the Post, which suffers from a similar breach of basic ethical standards,  would describe as “performance art” a “Spirit Cooking” dinner in a 2016 Democratic Party email featuring recipes written in blood and associated with Satanic symbols.

If the phrase “fundamental transformation” from the Kengor book sounds familiar, it was the promise of Barack Hussein Obama’s presidency and helps explain why he is so vocal about electing his former vice president, Joe Biden, this presidential year. Obama’s mentor, communist Frank Marshall Davis, was a pornographer and sex pervert. Professor Kengor wrote a book about Davis and his influence over Obama.

In a video, “The DNC that Democrats don’t want you to see,” Tucker Carlson highlighted the Cultural Marxism from the Democratic National Convention, including speeches and remarks about transgenderism and the overthrow of capitalism.

In order to understand these trends, Kengor traces the anti-Christian beliefs to Marx and Marxism, especially the cultural manifestation.

Whether Marx was personally a Satanist or not, Marxism drips with evil, as both the Kengor and Wurmbrand books clearly show.

Kengor, who writes frequently about politics and spiritual matters, ends his book with the challenge, “We must battle against and expose the powers of darkness that continue to pervade this modern world.”

Perhaps it is worth noting that a special 40th-anniversary version of the film “The Exorcist” is being released and will be available from — of all places — Amazon. If we as a people could hire an exorcist for our nation, it would be worthwhile. It could be a means by which to purge the legacy of Karl Marx.

*Cliff Kincaid is president of America’s Survival, Inc. www.usasurvival.org.

08/15/20

Joe Biden on Gun Control: Understanding Biden’s 2020 Platform and the Second Amendment

By: Sam Jacobs | Ammo.com

Joe Biden on Gun Control: Understanding Biden's 2020 Platform and the Second AmendmentThe one-two punch of the Wuhan Coronavirus explosion, and the civil unrest of early 2020, led to unprecedented growth in firearms ownership in America. All told, there were about two million firearms sold in the month of March 2020 alone. Between March and July, an additional three million were sold, with about half of those happening in the month of June.

Ammunition sales have similarly spiked, with record sales occurring on this website. However, gun owners don’t need a report to know that there has been a massive surge in demand for ammunition. They need only go down to their local gun store and see that all of the most common rounds are in short supply, sold out, or being rationed at the point of sale.

But it’s not just guns and ammo. There has also been a significant increase in the number of Americans obtaining their concealed carry weapons permit and packing on a daily basis. Forbes magazine estimates that 20 million Americans are now carrying as part of their everyday life.

The flipside of this is that Joe Biden’s 2020 campaign has been perhaps the most radically anti-Second Amendment campaign on record. Former Vice President Biden is very proud of his role in spiriting the 1994 gun ban into passage. If he’s elected, we will see an expansion of the power of the federal government and attacks on the rights of Americans that will not be restricted to the ownership of firearms. As president, Biden would resume the Obama-era attacks on the suburbs ended by President Trump, give citizenship (and voting rights) to nearly 30 million illegal aliens and use the Federal Reserve to address a “racial wealth gap.”

However, Biden’s desire to erode the Second Amendment deserves special attention. It is a radical agenda that will gut the right to bear arms in this country. Does that sound like bluster and hyperbole? It’s not.

Joe Biden’s Record: What He Says vs. What He’s Done

Joe Biden on Gun Control: Understanding Biden's 2020 Platform and the Second AmendmentThere are two ways to determine how a potential President Joe Biden would govern with regard to the Second Amendment: What he says and what he has done. As Joe Biden has been out of government since 2017, we will start with his history as a legislator and as Vice President of the United States.

Joe Biden has a very long record of being anti-Second Amendment. He voted for the 1986 Firearms Owners Protection Act, which was primarily a series of gimmes to gun grabbers in exchange for getting the ATF to leave law-abiding gun owners alone. If you’ve ever wanted to own an M-16, but can’t afford one because of the high price of the related tax stamp, you can thank Joe Biden for that.

Biden was also instrumental in the passage of the Brady Bill. This law, until the creation of the NICS background check system, provided for a five-day waiting period to purchase a firearm. He brags about his role in passing this bill into law on his campaign website, saying “In 1994, Biden – along with Senator Dianne Feinstein – secured the passage of 10-year bans on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. As president, Joe Biden will defeat the NRA again.”

Far more concerning, however, is that, as a Senator, Joe Biden literally wrote the bill that banned so-called “assault weapons” in the United States for 20 years. This assault weapons ban defined “assault weapons” in an extremely broad sense. Under the law, the definitions of an assault weapon were as follows:

Rifles:

  • Flash suppressors or barrels threaded for them
  • Pistol grips
  • Folding and telepathic stocks
  • Bayonet mounts
  • Grenade launchers

Pistols:

  • Semi-automatic versions of any automatic firearm
  • An unloaded weight of over 50 ounces
  • Threaded barrels designed to accommodate flash suppressors, barrel extenders, suppressors and handgrips
  • Barrel shrouds

Shotguns:

  • Pistol grips
  • Detachable magazines
  • Folding and telescopic stocks

The law likewise targeted a number of specific firearms that were widely popular with American gun owners. This included the Colt AR-15, the INTRATEC TEC-9 (which were popular with the Roof Koreans who defended Koreatown during the LA riots of 1994), and the Action Arms Israeli Military Industries UZI and Galil.

Not only were most of these restrictions unconstitutional, they were also largely useless. Many gun companies continued manufacturing virtually identical versions of firearms that had been banned by the law, removing only minor cosmetic features to get themselves into compliance. Numerous studies found that there was virtually no impact on violent crime throughout the United States.

If we are being generous, this can be seen as a misguided attempt to curb urban violent crime. If we are being more cynical, it was little more than a power grab.

The law expired on September 13, 2004. There have been several attempts to reintroduce the law, all of which have been unsuccessful.

Joe Biden’s 2020 Platform

Joe Biden on Gun Control: Understanding Biden's 2020 Platform and the Second AmendmentFor most of his political career, Joe Biden has operated as a sensible centrist within the Democratic Party. While one can argue that his positions are outside of conservatism, they have certainly not historically been outside the mainstream of American political thought. However, Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign is a whole different animal.

Joe Biden is running for president on a highly radical platform. There are a number of reasons why the former personal envoy of the credit card industry, the man who made it impossible to discharge student loans in bankruptcy, has pivoted toward appealing to the woke crowd. The reasons are unimportant, however. We can definitively say, without speculation as to motive, that Joe Biden’s 2020 campaign is perhaps the most radical political campaign in modern American history. Nowhere is this more clear than on the subject of firearms.

Why Language Matters

The official website for Joe Biden’s 2020 campaign defines gun violence as a “public health epidemic.” This might sound like boilerplate, but in fact, it is language designed to lay the groundwork for moving firearms restrictions under the purview of the FDA. This alphabet organization has broad leeway to ban, tax, and regulate anything deemed a danger to public health.

He also cites a commonly used weasel statistic to advocate for such: that 40,000 Americans die from firearm-related injuries every year. This includes every firearms-related death – suicides, accidental discharges, shootouts between gangland figures where no innocent bystander is killed, self-defense actions. And while any death is certainly tragic, this is simply not what anyone means when they talk about “gun violence.”

All told, there were 14,542 gun homicides in 2017, less than half of the statistic that Biden cites in his platform. This doesn’t even crack the top 10 causes of death in the United States, according to the CDC. More Americans died of septicemia in 2017 than gun homicides, yet there is no public health crusade against this.

Removing Protections for Gun Manufacturers

In a related campaign promise, Biden says that he will “hold gun manufacturers accountable” for the use of their products. This means that the families of shooting victims will be able to file civil suits against gun manufacturers to obtain damages related to the misuse of their products in crimes. This is an attempt at corporate gun control through the backdoor. When facing such liability, gun manufacturers will be inundated with frivolous lawsuits that will cause them to either go out of business or discontinue their civilian lines entirely. Biden has previously voted to repeal these protections, which is another point he brags about on his website:

“In 2005, then-Senator Biden voted against the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, but gun manufacturers successfully lobbied Congress to secure its passage. This law protects these manufacturers from being held civilly liable for their products – a protection granted to no other industry. Biden will prioritize repealing this protection.”

Banning “Assault Weapons” by Executive Order

Even if a President Joe Biden cannot get a new “assault weapons” ban to be passed, he plans to use an executive order to ban the importation of such weapons into the United States. His campaign website boasts that he will accomplish this “while working to pass this legislation… using his executive authority.” This would end the market for a number of lower-cost imports into the United States, restricting the Second Amendment rights of many low-income Americans who cannot afford high-priced domestic options. He also states that any new gun ban would be informed by the last one, meaning that it would be far more sweeping and ban a far greater number of weapons features than the 1994 bill.

Regulating Existing “Assault Weapons”

But what about the AR-15 you already purchased? Biden plans to use the National Firearms Act to regulate the possession of these firearms. His language on his website is vague and this is probably intentional. “Regulate” can mean just about anything, allowing him to either do something minor and claim victory or to enact sweeping changes without the hurdle of legislative approval.

When it comes to buybacks, his language becomes more clear: Those who now own “assault weapons” – whatever that means, either under newly passed legislation or executive fiat – will have to either sell them back to the government or register them with the ATF under the National Firearms Act:

“As president, Biden will pursue legislation to regulate possession of existing assault weapons under the National Firearms Act.“

Registration, of course, will be a prelude to confiscating these arms, either under the Biden Administration or future administrations even more hostile toward the Second Amendment. He would also seek to limit the number of firearms a person can purchase in a single month to one and close the so-called “gun show loophole.”

Using Mental Health to Ban Firearms Ownership

Joe Biden on Gun Control: Understanding Biden's 2020 Platform and the Second AmendmentThis should all be alarming to you. But unfortunately, it gets much worse. A Biden Administration would attempt to prevent Americans from owning firearms on the basis of “mental health” reasons. While this might sound reasonable (who wants a paranoid schizophrenic with a cache of AR-15s?), it is, in fact, a very troubling development. There are millions of Americans seeking treatment for anything from depression to anxiety. Oftentimes this isn’t representative of any underlying medical condition. People are simply having a hard time and reaching out for a little help – precisely what they are supposed to do.

This initially will only exclude people that have been adjudicated by the Social Security Administration as being unfit to manage their own affairs. But it is extremely unlikely that this will not be quickly expanded.

Closing the “Loopholes”

Biden also seeks to close a number of “loopholes” in the law that aren’t actually loopholes at all, such as:

  • The “Hate Crime” Loophole: This would deprive the right to bear arms from anyone who has received a politically motivated “hate crimes” enhancement to a misdemeanor – potentially making petty crimes like vandalism a pretext for depriving Americans of their Constitutional rights anytime an overzealous left-wing prosecutor decided to pursue a “hate crimes” enhancement. Please note that flags such as the Betsy Ross flag and the Gadsden flag have become labeled as “white supremacist” images in recent years, so don’t think you need to be wearing a swastika armband to receive such an enhancement.
  • The Charleston Loophole: This alleged “loophole” allows people to purchase a firearm if they have not received authorization to do so under the NICS system in three business days. Biden seeks to extend this to ten business days – effectively making Americans wait up to two weeks to purchase firearms.
  • The “Fugitive From Justice” Loophole: Biden wants to remove the right to keep and bear arms from 500,000 Americans who were declared by the Trump Administration to not actually be “fugitives from justice.”

As we can see, none of the above are actually “loopholes.” They are simply laws that Biden and his constituents do not care for. We should all be troubled by the Biden Administration working within legitimate legislative channels to roll back the rights of our fellow citizens. However, Biden isn’t even promising to do that: He plans to erode and cripple American Second Amendment rights through executive fiat.

Banning Online Sales

Get your ammunition and firearms online? Not under a Biden Administration. Beyond ammo and guns, Biden seeks to ban the online purchase of gun “kits,” such as 85 percent lowers or even parts for your weapons:

“Biden will enact legislation to prohibit all online sales of firearms, ammunition, kits, and gun parts.”

Those who have exotic or antiquated weapons will have an extremely difficult time finding the parts they need to keep their weapons operational. So-called “ghost guns” will likewise be banned under a potential President Biden.

Gun Confiscation and Licensure Requirements

Joe Biden on Gun Control: Understanding Biden's 2020 Platform and the Second AmendmentThe Biden platform includes creating a gun confiscation framework overseen by the ATF and the FBI. Ostensibly, this is to remove weapons from the hands of people who are no longer legally allowed to own them, such as felons and those awaiting charges. However, it is important to note that even if this is restricted to removing guns from the hands of felons and those awaiting charges now, that it can easily be used, in tandem with the new gun registration apparatus, to confiscate firearms from law-abiding Americans.

“As president, Biden will direct the FBI and ATF to outline a model relinquishment process, enact any necessary legislation to ensure relinquishment when individuals newly fall under one of the federal prohibitions, and then provide technical and financial assistance to state and local governments to establish effective relinquishment processes on their own.”

Biden does not seek a federal “red flag” law, but he does seek to “incentivize the adoption of these laws by giving states funds to implement them.” He would also seek to “incentivize” licensure requirements for Americans to own firearms.

Using Big Tech to Spy on Americans

A Biden Administration would spend government time and resources digging up threats on the taxpayer’s dime. He would create a “Task Force on Online Harassment and Abuse” to identify the “connection between mass shootings, online harassment, extremism, and violence against women.” This amounts to little more than a politically motivated creation of a committee to partner with Big Tech to snoop on Americans with the aim of depriving them of their Second Amendment rights.

Expanding the ATF and Other Gun Control Tactics

The Biden platform would move to require all gun manufacturers to eventually manufacture only so-called “smart guns.” He would pass a law that would require all gun owners to keep their firearms in a gun safe, dramatically increasing the cost of ownership of firearms. The Biden DOJ would prioritize the prosecution of “straw purchasers” – a stark departure of Obama-era policy where the DOJ worked closely with them, eventually allowing narco-terrorists and Islamic terrorists access to heavy firepower. Local and state law enforcement would be informed whenever someone failed a background check. The State Department would take measures to block code from the Internet that might be used to 3D print a gun in someone’s home. He seeks a far more robust ATF than already exists. Finally, he would prohibit state and local governments from training teachers in how to defend their students with firearms.

The bottom line to all of this is that the Biden Administration would work to further erode American Second Amendment protections than any other before it. It is just one component of a radical agenda that has taken over the Biden campaign. Whether or not Biden actually believes any of this and whether or not he has simply had his campaign hijacked by more radical forces is beside the point – which is that the Biden Administration would actively pursue police-state measures against law-abiding gun owners in the United States.

If you have a friend who is a new gun owner, who is unaware of the stakes in this election, we urge you to share this material with them.

08/14/20

Epic Relations Agreement Between Israel and UAE

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

© Mandel Ngan Image: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo meets with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed al-Nahyan (Mandel Ngan / Pool via AFP – Getty Images)

The agreement, to be known as the Abraham Accord.

While the election(s) of Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel has been contentious for years, and there is a convoluted shared leadership role with Benny Gantz, this new agreement launched by President Trump 3 years ago and now completed is a significant achievement for Netanyahu. The relation agreement continues to reshape the Middle East. Israel had signed peace agreements with Egypt in 1979 and Jordan in 1994.

Arab nations merely by history are not supposed to work with or have relations with the Jewish nation but some Gulf States in the Middle East are moderating including the United Arab Emirates. This relations agreement does put other nations on notice including Qatar, Iran, and Turkey. The UAE has been a great ally of the United States in the war against al Qaeda and Islamic State. There is at least one stipulation however to the agreement and that is any new or additional housing construction in certain areas of the West Bank are again put on hold. Still, Palestinian leaders, apparently taken by surprise, denounced it as a “stab in the back” to their cause.

The UAE, which has never fought Israel and has quietly been improving ties for years. Israel, the UAE and other Gulf countries that view Iran as a regional menace have been cultivating closer ties in recent years. Turkey has had diplomatic relations with Israel for decades, but under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has positioned itself as a champion of the Palestinians. Turkey and the UAE support rival camps in the conflict in Libya.

Israel and the UAE are expected soon to exchange ambassadors and embassies. A signing ceremony is due to be held at the White House.

Israel-UAE reached very close to full normalization of ...

Delegations from Israel and the United Arab Emirates will meet in the coming weeks to sign agreements regarding investment, tourism, direct flights, security, telecommunications, and other issues, the joint statement said.

“Everybody said this would be impossible,” Trump said.

“Now that the ice has been broken, I expect more Arab and Muslim countries will follow the United Arab Emirates’ lead,” Trump added.

***

Read the statement here:

President Donald J. Trump, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, and Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates spoke today and agreed to the full normalization of relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates.

This historic diplomatic breakthrough will advance peace in the Middle East region and is a testament to the bold diplomacy and vision of the three leaders and the courage of the United Arab Emirates and Israel to chart a new path that will unlock the great potential in the region. All three countries face many common challenges and will mutually benefit from today’s historic achievement.

Delegations from Israel and the United Arab Emirates will meet in the coming weeks to sign bilateral agreements regarding investment, tourism, direct flights, security, telecommunications, technology, energy, healthcare, culture, the environment, the establishment of reciprocal embassies, and other areas of mutual benefit. Opening direct ties between two of the Middle East’s most dynamic societies and advanced economies will transform the region by spurring economic growth, enhancing technological innovation, and forging closer people-to-people relations.

As a result of this diplomatic breakthrough and at the request of President Trump with the support of the United Arab Emirates, Israel will suspend declaring sovereignty over areas outlined in the President’s Vision for Peace and focus its efforts now on expanding ties with other countries in the Arab and Muslim world. The United States, Israel, and the United Arab Emirates are confident that additional diplomatic breakthroughs with other nations are possible, and will work together to achieve this goal.

The United Arab Emirates and Israel will immediately expand and accelerate cooperation regarding the treatment of and the development of a vaccine for the coronavirus. Working together, these efforts will help save Muslim, Jewish, and Christian lives throughout the region.

This normalization of relations and peaceful diplomacy will bring together two of America’s most reliable and capable regional partners. Israel and the United Arab Emirates will join with the United States to launch a Strategic Agenda for the Middle East to expand diplomatic, trade, and security cooperation. Along with the United States, Israel and the United Arab Emirates share a similar outlook regarding the threats and opportunities in the region, as well as a shared commitment to promoting stability through diplomatic engagement, increased economic integration, and closer security coordination. Today’s agreement will lead to better lives for the peoples of the United Arab Emirates, Israel, and the region.

The United States and Israel recall with gratitude the appearance of the United Arab Emirates at the White House reception held on January 28, 2020, at which President Trump presented his Vision for Peace, and express their appreciation for United Arab Emirates’ related supportive statements. The parties will continue their efforts in this regard to achieve a just, comprehensive, and enduring resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. As set forth in the Vision for Peace, all Muslims who come in peace may visit and pray at the Al Aqsa Mosque, and Jerusalem’s other holy sites should remain open for peaceful worshippers of all faiths.

Prime Minister Netanyahu and Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan express their deep appreciation to President Trump for his dedication to peace in the region and to the pragmatic and unique approach he has taken to achieve it.