US switches sides in Syria 11

For the first time in the 1,000-day civil war, the Americans find themselves in greater sympathy with Russia, Iran, Assad and Hizballah than the rebel cause.

According to DebkaFile, Bashar Assad is winning the civil war (or uprising against his dictatorship). So the Obama administration has stopped supporting the rebels to the extent, and in whatever way they ever did, and is now romancing Bashar Assad.  The new policy follows naturally from the exciting new love-in Obama is having with the Shia tyrants of Iran.

The conquest Sunday, Dec. 8, of Nabuk in the Qalamoun Mountains on the Syrian-Lebanese border is a signal strategic breakthrough for Bashar Assad’s army, climaxing a row of battleground successes that have cast the rebel forces into deep disarray. Nabuk fell after a two-week siege by the combined forces of Syria, Hizballah, Iraqi Shiite units and the Iranian Al Qods Brigades. The Qalamoun range which separates central Syria from central Lebanon is at their mercy.

Assad and his allies, Hizballah’s Hassan Nasrallah and Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani, can chalk up four major war gains:

1. The highway from Damascus to Syria’s two port towns, Latakia and Tartus on the Mediterranean coast, is now open through the wayside town of Homs.

2. The last remaining rebel supply routes from Lebanon are cut off. Syrian rebels can no longer use Lebanon as a supply base for reinforcements and new recruits or as a destination for their casualties to receive treatment.

3. The Damascus-Beirut highway is now under Hizballah control, providing its Beirut headquarters vitally direct access to the forces posted to Damascus, and easing liaison and communications among Iranian, Syrian and Hizballah military units in the field.

4. Pushing the rebels out of their Qalamoun strongholds was the last step before loosening their two-year grip on the eastern suburbs of Damascus. Under relentless Syrian army siege, many rebel commanders holding on to those suburbs are crossing the lines and handing sectors over to Syrian army officers.

The Assad regime has reached a stage in the civil war at which the rebels no longer pose a military threat to his hold on power and have lost the capacity for more more than terrorist attacks or sporadic mortar shelling.

The Syrian rebel movement has lost its coherence as a fighting force. In desperation, they are releasing a stream of false claims of successes and unfounded accusations that Assad has reverted to chemical warfare. …

Since the only anti-Assad forces still in fighting shape are the two Al Qaeda affiliates, Jabhat al Nusra and the Iraqi branch, Washington is turning its back on the Syrian rebel movement as a whole and instead [is] ready to talk indirectly to Syrian army elements loyal to Assad as well as Hizballah.

Indeed, in consideration of Hizballah’s military kudos and rising political clout in Beirut, the Obama administration has opened up a back channel to its leaders, mostly through British diplomats.

It turns out that the same coalition which contrived the nuclear deal in Geneva on Nov. 24 – the US, Russia and Iran – is going into action again on the Syrian issue with a favored spot for Iran’s Lebanese Shiite pawn [Hizballah].

We think this DebkaFile report  is likely to be true in its main thrust: that US policy has changed, and America is now in alliance with Russia and Iran and in negotiation with one of the world’s most savage terrorist organizations.

And if it is true, it is an enormity – an extreme wrong.

It is not that the rebels are any better than Assad. Both sides are evil. Both sides seem to be peopled by vicious murdering torturing cannibals. Neither should be supported. But Assad is Iran’s client. Hizballah is Iran’s creation. What matters here is the colossal boost to Iranian power. The US has conceded the territory to the mullahs.

Under a pretense by their traitorous leaders that it is better to negotiate than risk a war with belligerent enemies, the American people are being led into capitulation.

Iran will be nuclear armed. Hizballah can claim legitimacy, and the cost to Lebanon and Israel is dreadful to think of. Russia’s power and prestige is being enhanced with each disastrous move Obama makes in the region of the Middle East.

And the US is no longer the protector of the free world. The erstwhile free world no longer has a protector.

Let’s pretend it’s not happening 0

News – yet same old same old – about Islamic slaughter and deception and Western indulgence of it.

You wouldn’t hear it from the mainstream media, but this is what is happening.

Syria is killing hundreds of Kurds using Israeli-made spy drones.

The drones were sold by Israel to Turkey, now ruled by a fiercely anti-Israel government under the leadership of Prime Minister Erdogan, and it has equipped Syria with the drones to use against the Kurds.

Turkey, we must recall, is still a member of NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

According to DebkaFile:

Syrian troops and Kurdish tribesman are locked in fierce battle since the Syrian army blasted four northeastern Kurdish towns and neighborhoods at the end of June … Hundreds of Kurds are reported dead.

The Syrian campaign is backed by Heron (Eitan) spy drones Israel sold Turkey, made accessible on the personal say-so of Prime Minister Tayyip Recep Erdogan. Turkey therefore becomes the first NATO member to make advanced Western military technology available for the use of a strong ally of radical Iran and an active sponsor of terrorists. Following intense exchanges between Jerusalem and Washington, the NATO command was urged to put Ankara on the carpet – with no response as yet.

Intense exchanges between Jerusalem and Washington? Israel actually demanding something of Obama, and Obama giving in to it? Amazing if true.

Less amazing is NATO’s non-response. It was odd of it to let Turkey in, since it is nowhere near the North Atlantic; but at least at the time of its admittance it was a pro-Western secular state. Now Turkey is in the enemy camp, and NATO, the defense alliance that the West could safely depend on in the Cold War, has lost the plot. For years, ever since it went to war to assist Muslim terrorists in Kosovo, NATO’s willingness to serve the purposes it was created for has been perceptibly weakening.

The drones are being used to track Kurds in flight across Syria’s borders, mainly into Lebanon, where Hizballah is helping Syria hunt the refugees down. The accessibility to Damascus of the unmanned aerial vehicles is in direct breach of the Israel-Turkish sales contracts which barred their use – and the use of other Israeli high-tech items sold to Turkey during years of close military collaboration – in the service of hostile states or entities.

Extending their sphere to Syrian and Lebanese skies gives the Syrian army and Hizballah (Iran’s external arm) a unique opportunity to study the Heron (Eitan)’s sophisticated attributes in real combat conditions at close hand and adjust their own tactics accordingly to outwit them.

DEBKAfile’s intelligence sources have no doubt that Iranian intelligence officers stationed in Damascus and Beirut jumped at the opportunity to learn more about the Israeli wonder-drones.

Regarding the crackdown on the Kurds, our military sources report that three large-scale Syrian military operations against the Kurdish people are in progress under the guidance of Turkish generals based at Syrian staff headquarters in Damascus …

Syrian elite forces are battling suspected Kurdish members of the Turkish PKK in at least four northeastern Syrian towns near the Syrian-Turkish-Iraqi border triangle: the big Kurdish town of Qamishli, the mixed Kurdish-Assyrian town of Al Asakah and two others, Qaratshuk and Diwar. All four and their outlying villages are under massive Syrian army siege after complete residential blocks were blasted – acting as the trigger for the current fighting.

The PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) is a terrorist organization, and Muslims and Arabs do not like terrorism when it is used against themselves.

[But] not all the victims are PKK fighters by any means. Most were civilians. Turkish intelligence sources tried to justify the Syrian massacre and their government’s complicity by claiming that 2,000 of the 6,000 PKK fighters conducting terrorist attacks in Turkey from North Iraqi havens are Syrian Kurds or providers of alternative bases for their Turkish comrades to strike Turkish military positions from a second direction.

While until Saturday, July 17, Damascus was tight-lipped about its grim campaign against its Kurdish community, Turkish military sources were more vocal. They placed the number of Kurdish dead in battle at 185 and another 400 taken captive, many of whom will be turned over to Ankara. Our sources estimate the number of dead as much higher – more than 300, with at least 1,000 injured. …

When Turkish reporters finally tackled Syrian president Bashar Assad on his anti-Kurd campaign Saturday morning, July 17, their questions were smoothly turned aside. “I’m not following the details concerning this operation,” said the Syrian ruler. “The issue is not about capturing 10 or 100 terrorists. What matters is the principle.”

He added: “Our cooperation with Turkey in the security field is not new We have coordinated for many years. Intervening when there are preparations for a terrorist attack or for infiltration is a dimension of this cooperation.”

Not so. Assad, true to form, was lying. Although Erdogan’s party came to power in Turkey in 2002, its co-operation with Syria only dates from October 2009, when the two states signed a military pact.

Despite the pact, Israel is still selling its spy-drones to Turkey. (And Turkey is planning to produce its own drones on the Israeli model.)

A Turkish news source reports:

Turkey has purchased 10 massive Heron drones from Israel and their delivery was expected to be completed in August [2010].

Turkey had also bought or leased other drones from Israel, he said. The United States separately provides intelligence from Predator drones on the Kurdish rebels.

Israel has also upgraded some of Turkey’s combat jets and tanks with modern radar equipment …

Turkey sent terrorists of its own with a flotilla of ships last May to break Israel’s legal and necessary blockade of Gaza.

How long will it take Israel and the West in general to recognize that Turkey is no longer an ally but an actively aggressive enemy, and treat it accordingly?

What lies behind 0

The government of Turkey and its terrorist group IHH, using an assortment of useful Western idiots as cover, planned and carried out the recent incident off the coast of Gaza when Israelis enforcing the blockade of Gaza were attacked and some of the terrorists were killed. President Obama called it a “tragedy”. It was certainly not a tragedy that nine Islamic terrorists were killed; it was a small triumph. But the motivation behind the Turkish plot could be bringing about a tragedy on an immense scale.

Ryan Mauro writes this (in part) about Turkey and its Prime Minister Erdogan:

The most significant outcome of the Mavi Marmara incident is that there can no longer be any doubt that Turkey has joined the anti-Western bloc that includes Hamas, Iran and Syria. The Muslim country was once devotedly secular, an ally of Israel, and remains a member of NATO [scandalously and dangerously – it should have been expelled – JB], but under the direction of Prime Minister Erdogan and the Justice and Development Party (often referred to as the AKP), Turkey has gone in the completely opposite direction with enormous strategic consequences. …

Erdogan … founded the AKP [in 2001], which took a omore moderate line, portraying itself as committed to separation of mosque and state but “faithful governance,” as Dr. Essam El-Erian, the chief of the Muslim Brotherhood’s political bureau, described the AKP’s “moderate Islamist” ideology. There was no anti-Western rhetoric and the party strongly supported membership in the European Union. [Of course they did – they wanted to inject as huge Muslim population into the EU.] The group won a large victory in the 2002 elections, resulting in Erdogan taking the post of Prime Minister.

Dr. El-Erian praised Erdogan’s victory, saying that it was the result of the “exposing of the failure of the secular trend.” El-Erian confirmed that the Muslim Brotherhood had close ties to the AKP, but the West treated Turkey as if nothing had changed. It wasn’t until Turkey steadfastly refused to allow U.S. soldiers to transit their territory to overthrow Saddam Hussein [which was when and why it should have been expelled from NATO.] that the West began questioning the allegiance of Erdogan’s government.

The Erdogan government soon began a concerted effort to fuel anti-Israeli and anti-American sentiment, knowing that such feelings help the AKP politically and hurt its opponents in the secular military that have long ties to the West. The Turkish media consistently reported alleged U.S. atrocities, fanning the already massive anti-war sentiment. The outrageous claims can only be compared to the anti-Israeli propaganda seen in the Arab world and Iran, echoing similar themes such as the use of chemical weapons against civilians and the harvesting of organs from killed Iraqis.

The AKP won an even larger share of the vote in the July 2007 election and had even more dominance over the government. Since then, the ideology of Erdogan has become more apparent as Turkish opinion has become less hostile to anti-Western Islamism. Shortly after the victory, Turkey’s moves towards Iran and other enemies of the West became more visible and aggressive. ..

Erdogan’s government simultaneously became more anti-Israeli, particularly once the Israeli military offensive into Gaza began in response to the rocket attacks of Hamas. …

The Turkish-Syrian alliance began shortly after Erdogan came to power, with Syrian President Bashar Assad visiting Turkey and a free trade agreement being signed.

Turkey has also moved closer to Sudan, refusing to describe the situation in Darfur as a genocide. Erdogan’s government also opposes the International Criminal Court’s indictment of President Omar al-Bashir for human rights violations. His defense of Bashir is that “no Muslim could perpetrate a genocide.”

Now, Turkey is taking center stage in the wake of the Mavi Marmara incident. Turkey is openly considering cutting off all diplomatic ties with Israel and is saying that its warships will escort future convoys to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. There are reports that Erdogan himself may actually join a convoy. Erdogan now openly says, “I do not think that Hamas is a terrorist organization…”

Today, the government has begun the country’s “largest-ever crackdown” on the military, prosecuting 33 current and former military officers for allegedly planning a coup to overthrow the AKP government in 2003 including the former head of the special forces. Those arrested have been accused of planning to carry out acts of terrorism including the bombing of mosques, which they deny. Given the military’s pride in acting as the guardian of Turkey’s secularism, it isn’t surprising that elements of the military would desire to see the AKP overthrown. …

Erdogan’s defense of the vessel [the Mavi Marmara] owned by the IHH, a Turkish Islamist group tied to Hamas and other terrorist activity, is particularly insightful. Any true opponent of terrorism and radical Islamism would ban the group or at least officially investigate them. In 1997, the Turkish authorities raided the IHH’s office in Istanbul and made numerous arrests. IHH operatives were found with weapons-related materials and the French counterterrorism magistrate said that they were planning on supporting jihadists in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Chechnya. “The essential goal of this Association was to illegally arm its membership for overthrowing democratic, secular, and constitutional order present in Turkey and replacing it with an Islamic state founded on the Shariah,” the French magistrate’s report said.

If the goal of the IHH is to establish Sharia Law in Turkey, and Erdogan’s government is describing them as a “charity,” what does that say about Erdogan’s plans? …

The West’s loss of Turkey has frightening strategic consequences. They are so frightening that the West refused to acknowledge the trend until it became undeniable in recent weeks. …

Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and other countries in the Middle East and North Africa that are hostile to Iran’s ambitions now face an even more threatening bloc that has been enlarged by the defection of Turkey. The temptation for them to surrender the mantle of leadership to the Iranian-Syrian-Turkish bloc in order to save themselves will now reach unprecedented levels, regardless of whether Iran obtains nuclear weapons or not.

To make matters worse, Erdogan’s prestige as the preeminent challenger of Israel will lead to competition with Iran, sparking an escalation where each side tries to establish superior anti-Israeli and anti-Western credentials. Israel is now in its most isolated and dangerous situation since its birth in 1948.

There will be nuclear war 0

The Guardian, which is strongly pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel, reports that the Obama administration is secretly in contact with Hamas, the terrorist organization that rules Gaza:

The United States is sending a succession of envoys to engage with Hamas but lacks the bravery to talk to the Islamist movement openly, its leader, Khaled Meshal, said in an interview with the Guardian.

Meshal praised President Dmitry Medvedev of Russia for meeting him in Damascus and the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, for hosting the discussion 10 days ago. He told Medvedev that the US was also talking to him. “I thanked him for that meeting and told him the Americans contact us, but are not brave enough to do so openly,” said Meshal. “I am confident that in the very near future, everyone will realise that they will have to deal with Hamas.”

The claim that the US is engaging with a group it lists as a terrorist organisation will upset the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, whose security forces have locked up and allegedly tortured leading Hamas members in the West Bank.

Meshal said the tectonic plates in the Middle East were shifting, with Iran, Turkey and Syria emerging as regional powers. Egypt was in the throes of a battle for succession that would paralyse it as a regional player. As a result, Israel was losing its power to impose conditions on a weakened Palestinian leadership in Ramallah.

As it felt its power ebbing, Israel needed a new war but was crippled by self-doubt, Meshal said. He claimed the attacks on Hezbollah in Lebanon in 2006, and against Hamas in Gaza in 2009, left both organisations stronger politically and militarily.

“Israel is conducting exercises threatening Hamas, Hezbollah and Syria. It needs a war, but choosing the front to fight on will not be a picnic and this reflects the crisis in Israel. It does not want peace, but the option of war is not easy for it,” he said.

Hamas and Hezbollah, it should be remembered, exist to attack Israel. Hamas was created by the Muslim Brotherhood, and Hezbollah – “The Party of God” –  by the Ayatollah Khomeini and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, both for the sole purpose of attacking Israel.

Hamas and its supporters are provoking war. The Turkish-led flotilla that tried to break the Gaza blockade was a trap into which the Israelis unaccountably fell.

Caroline Glick writes:

The fact that IDF forces boarding the ships would be met by trenchant, violent opposition was knowable simply by looking at Turkey’s role in the operation. First of all, the Turkish government-supported NGO behind the operation is IHH. As the US government, the Turkish government in the 1990s, the Investigative Project on Terrorism and countless other sources have proven, IHH is a terrorist organization with direct links to al-Qaida and Hamas. Its members have been involved in terrorist warfare from Chechnya and Bosnia to Iraq and Israel.

(And the Turkish Prime Minister has the chutzpah to call in the Israeli ambassador and reproach Israel for attacking “peaceful humanitarians”!)

It’s surprising that the IDF did not anticipate an armed attack, but they did not. They shot paint-balls at their assailants, who use knives, clubs, and at least one gun. Eventually the Israelis had to defend themselves with bullets. Hamas has won a world-wide propaganda victory claiming that the only aim of the ships was “to take humanitarian aid” to Gaza, and that innocent “peace protestors” were shot down in cold blood by the Israelis. Most of the world is only too willing to believe them.The world denies Israel the right to defend itself. But Israel’s only choice is between self-defense and obliteration.

Hezbollah – which John Brennan, Obama’s National Security Adviser, absurdly declares has a “moderate” faction that should be negotiated with – has recently been armed by Syria with Scud missiles. Iran has enough enriched uranium to make at least two bombs, and probably already has them. In addition it might have bought one or more from North Korea.

There will be war, and it will be nuclear war.

Israel will have to use nuclear weapons.*

There will probably be nuclear war in the Far East too. Nuclear-armed North Korea is threatening “all-out war” against South Korea, and China will support its Communist ally.

The wars will be the result of Obama’s policies of “engagement” with Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria, and North Korea.

Obama the Disarmer – the passionate nuclear disarmer – will be a cause of nuclear war.

*Go here to watch a Pajamas TV video of Sam Cohen, “Manhattan project member and father of the neutron bomb”, saying what we say about Iran, Israel, and the necessity for Israel to use its nuclear bombs. He advises the Israelis to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities “tomorrow morning”.

A success story 1

At last the day came when China and Russia agreed to support a US resolution in the UN Security Council that would make Iran regret it had defied the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, promise never to make nuclear bombs, stop threatening to destroy Israel, and utterly renounce its wicked ways.

As you can imagine, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton felt immensely triumphant – not so much because Iran would now be forced to do all that, but because getting Russia and China on their side had been really hard. It was especially great for Hillary, as she hadn’t achieved anything else to boast about since becoming Secretary of State.

What dire punishments, what unendurable difficulties, will the resolution impose on the Iranian regime?

Sorry, we can’t tell you. The draft of the resolution has not been made public.

However, some information about it comes from unofficial sources.

One report claims that it will ban Iran from building ballistic missiles. (Which it has already done, without permission.)

And what penalties will it impose if Iran disobeys? These:

It “calls on countries to block financial transactions, including insurance and reinsurance, and ban the licensing of Iranian banks if they have information that provides reasonable grounds to believe these activities could contribute to Iranian nuclear activities.”  And it “recalls the need for states to exercise vigilance over all Iranian banks, including the Central Bank, to prevent transactions contributing to proliferation activities.”

“Calls on them to”, and “recalls the need to”, but does not require them to do so.

Susan Rice, US Ambassador to the UN, says it will give “greater teeth” to some sanctions already imposed which haven’t proved effective, and “add strong new measures to intensify pressure on the Iranian government to resolve concerns that its nuclear program is peaceful and not aimed at producing nuclear weapons.”

And that seems to be the most that can be hoped of it.

“The draft resolution is weaker than the original Western-backed proposal, especially on financial and energy-related measures. Rather than place sanctions on Iran’s oil industry, the proposed resolution simply notes the potential connection between Iranian energy revenues and funding for the country’s nuclear program and calls on U.N. members to be aware of it.”

The draft was introduced into the Security Council last Tuesday. (It was urgent, Ambassador Rice said, but she “wouldn’t speculate on when the resolution will be put to a vote”.)

On the day before, Iran announced an agreement it had made with Turkey and Brazil [?] to send some if its low-enriched uranium to Turkey (which has as yet no enrichment facility), in exchange for higher-enriched fuel rods – which Iran will use only in an innocent medical research reactor, built long ago for Tehran by the United States. (And meanwhile, of course, it will continue with its own high-enrichment program.)

But if Iran had hoped that this little ruse, this piece of side-play with Turkey and Brazil, would thwart the resolve of Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Susan Rice, it was underestimating the stuff they’re made of! They pressed on, confident that Russia and China were right behind them.

That is, if those two powers stuck to their side of the bargain.

The US had had to pay a price for their co-operation.

First, various provisions had to be stripped from the draft before either of them would even consider giving their nods to it.

Chiefly, the one sanction that would really hurt Iran, aimed at its oil and gas industries, had to be removed. Both China and Russia had invested too heavily in them to allow anything like that.

Next, according to another report, they had to drop sanctions against three Russian organizations that had aided Iran’s nuclear program (and that until now the Russian government had denied were giving any support at all to Iran). And “penalties against a fourth Russian entity previously accused of illicit arms sales to Syria were also lifted” as part of the deal. So were “US sanctions imposed in October 2008 against Russian state arms trader Rosoboronexport for … illicit assistance to Iran’s nuclear program.”

Now Iran may expect aid from Russia to resume or continue. (And so may Syria.)

Then China had to be paid. Part of China’s demand was that America should take no notice of certain nuclear-related transactions it has made with Pakistan, in particular its contracts to build two reactors in that country, which is already a nuclear power.

Pakistan in its turn is providing nuclear and ballistic missile technologies to both Iran and North Korea.

And North Korea has announced that it is developing a hydrogen bomb – a claim that the Obama administration refuses to believe. (North Korea recently torpedoed a South Korean ship, and warned that any retaliation will mean all-out war.)

So let’s say well done Barack, Hillary, and Susan! And thank you for keeping us safe.

Gate-crashing into history 0

Who or what now holds the office of President of the United States of America?

The answer to the question is itself a question mark.

David Solway asks the question and his answers are questions. Here is part of what he writes:

Who is this guy? And what does so enigmatic a figure augur for the United States and, indeed, for the future of us all? No matter what hypothesis or conviction one espouses concerning his definitive DNA, it seems fair to say that a shadow of the clandestine — or if one prefers, the inscrutable — envelops this president.

Even Obama’s most avid supporters, if they are honest, must allow that, compared to his POTUS predecessors, unambiguously little is known about his antecedents or, for example, the salient facts of his academic career — many of his records are still under seal, his college and university transcripts have not been released and, broadly speaking, his significant documentation is rather flimsy. There is not much of a paper trail here; for that matter, there is scarcely a Hansel-and-Gretel bread crumb trail. How such a man could be elected to the presidency … remains a riddle for the sphinx. …

In any event, there can be no doubt that the dossier is scanty and that this is a truly amazing deficiency. We simply do not have a clear portrait or a crisply factual biography of the president. But what we do know about his close affiliates — America-and-Jew bashing Reverend Jeremiah Wright, former PLO spokesman Rashid Khalidi, hysterical and racially divisive Cornel West, unrepentant Weatherman terrorist Bill Ayers, unscrupulous entrepreneur Tony Rezko — is profoundly unsettling. … [T]he asymmetric relation between what we know and what we don’t know must distress any rational person curious about so influential an actor on the current political scene.

That Louis Farrakhan, like millions of others, feels that Obama was “selected” for our times should give us further pause. On the contrary, it may not be out of place to suggest that we are now afflicted with the worst possible president at the worst possible time, with Iran darting toward the nuclear finish line, the Palestinians as intransigent as ever, the Russians moving back into the Caucasus region, negotiating with Venezuela and solidifying ties with Iran, Syria and Turkey, terrorism … on the rise and U.S. citizens increasingly at the mercy of the jihadists, China holding massive quantities of American Treasury notes, Obama considering ruinous cap-and-trade legislation at a time when the AGW consensus is collapsing, the American debt estimated to hit 100% of GDP in 2011 and its unfunded entitlement liabilities totaling over $US 100 trillion, leading to the prospect of monetary collapse. None of these critical issues have been substantially addressed by the president, except insofar as his actions in some cases, lack of action in others, have only exacerbated them. The collateral fact that we really have no valid and comprehensive notion of who exactly is leading us at this crucial historical juncture boggles the mind.

Yes, this riddle of a man, this living quandary named Barack Hussein Obama is so unlikely a president of the United States, it’s as if he has gate-crashed into history.

Jihad central, Pennsylvania 3

World-wide, there have been over 15,000 terrorist attacks since 9/11, all of them carried out by Muslims in the name of Islam.

Almost all terrorist violence in the 21st century has been committed by Muslims. (Exceptions are so few they could be counted on the fingers of one hand, except in Sri Lanka, and there rebel Tamil terrorism has been defeated by government forces.)

American armed forces are at war with Muslim terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Yet Obama does not want the words “Muslim” or “Islam” to be mentioned in connection with terrorism.

The Department of Homeland Security pretends  that there’s a fearful danger of terrorism coming from conservatives. No one really believes it. Something more dramatic being needed to distract attention from the actual Muslim threat, a bunch of “Christian warriors” who like to shoot guns in the wild were arrested recently and charged with plotting to “overthrow the government”  just so (we suspect) Obama’s spokesmen could make the claim that “not all terrorists are Muslim”.

Meanwhile, one of the chief directors of violent jihad issues his orders from a safe haven in the United States.

Paul Williams reports at Family Security Matters:

The most dangerous Islamist in the world is neither Afghani nor Arab. He comes from neither Sudan nor Somalia. And he resides in neither the mountains of Pakistan nor the deserts of the Palestinian territories. This individual has toppled the secular government of Turkey and established madrassahs throughout the world.

His schools indoctrinate children in the tenets of radical Islam and prepare adolescents for the Islamization of the world.

More than 90 of these madrassahs have been established as charter schools throughout the United States. They are funded by American taxpayers.

His name is Fethullan Gulen and he resides in Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania. Gulen plots the overthrow of secular governments and oversees the spread of education jihad throughout Asia, Europe, and the United States.

Gulen is surrounded by an army of over 100 Turkish Islamists, who guard him and tend to his needs. The army is comprised of armed militants who wear suits and ties and do not look like traditional Islamists in cloaks and turbans. They follow their hocaefendi‘s (master lord’s) orders and even refrain from marrying until age 50 per his instructions. When they do marry, their spouses are expected to dress in the Islamic manner, as dictated by Gulen himself.

The Saylorsburg property consists of a massive chalet surrounded by numerous out buildings, including recreational centers, dormitories, cabins for visiting foreign dignitaries, a helicopter pad, and firing ranges.

Neighbors complain of the incessant sounds of gunfire – including the rat-tat-tat of fully automatic weapons – coming from the compound and the low flying helicopter that circles the area in search of all intruders.

The FBI has been called to the scene, the neighbors say, but no action has been taken to end the illegal activity.

Sentries stand guard at the gates to the estate to turn away all curiosity seekers. Within the sentry hut are wide screen televisions that project high resolution images from security cameras. Before the hut is a sign that reads “Golden Generation Worship and Retreat Center.” …

Gulen fled Turkey in 1998 to avoid prosecution on charges that he was attempting to undermine Turkey’s secular government with the objective of establishing an Islamic government. Since his arrival in Pennsylvania, the Department of Homeland Security has been trying to deport him [really trying – for 12 years? – JB]. But in 2008 a federal court ruled that Gulan was an individual with “extraordinary ability in the field of education” who merited permanent residence status in the U.S. The ruling remains quizzical because Gulen has no formal education or training.

Gulen … was a student and follower of Sheikh Sa’id-i Kurdi (1878-1960), also known as Sa’id-i Nursi, the founder of the Islamist Nur (light) movement. After Turkey’s war of independence, Kurdi demanded, in an address to the new parliament, that the new republic be based on Islamic principles. He turned against Atatürk and his reforms and against the new modern, secular, Western republic. …

Turkey is now ruled by the Justice and Democratic Party (Adalet ve Kalkinma, AKP)- – a party under the Gulen’s control. Abdullah Gul, Turkey’s first Islamist President, is a Gulen disciple along with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Yusuf Ziya Ozcan, the head of Turkey’s Council of Higher Education.

Under the AKP, Turkey has transformed from a secular state into an Islamic country …

Despite the rhetoric of European Union accession, Turkey has transferred its alliance from Europe and the United States to Russia and Iran. It has moved toward friendship with Hamas, Hezbollah, and Syria and created a pervasive anti-Christian, anti-Jewish, and anti-America animus throughout the populace. …

Gulen’s followers, known as Fethullahists, have gained control of [Turkey’s] media outlets, its financial institutions and banks, and its business organizations. …

Several countries have outlawed the establishment of Gulen schools and cemaats (communities) within their borders – including Russia and Uzbekistan. Even the Netherlands, a nation that embraces pluralism and tolerance, has opted to cut funding to the Gulen schools because of their imminent threat to the social order.

But Gulen’s activities in the United States, including the establishment of an armed fortress in the midst of the Pocono Mountains, have escaped national press attention. …

Why has the federal government opted to turn a blind eye to Gulen and his mountain fortress? Why have Gulen’s madrassahs been kept under the radar screen of Homeland Security?

Why have the CIA and FBI allowed Gulen to wreak havoc and topple secular governments without interruption or intervention?

The questions beg answers.

Courting lies – and terrorists 0

This is interesting, but more than interesting, it is important.

It is interesting because it shows how an Obama administration’s think-tank works for it – with a rather naive and transparent cunning, which they must mistake for  brilliant deception.

It is important because it confirms that Obama wants to join hands not only with hostile Muslim states like Iran, but also with actively inimical Muslim terrorists like Hizballah.

Barry Rubin, director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal, writes:

Can things get worse with the Obama Administration’s foreign – and especially Middle East – policy? Yes, it’s not inevitable but I have just seen personally a dangerous example of what could be happening next. In fact, I never expected that the administration would try to recruit me in this campaign, as you’ll see …

First, a little background. One of the main concerns with the Obama Administration is that it would go beyond just engaging Syria and Iran, turning a blind eye to radical anti-American activities throughout the region.

To cite some examples, it has not supported Iraq in its protests about Syrian-backed terror, even though the group involved is al-Qaida, with which the United States is supposedly at war. Nor has it launched serious efforts to counter Iran’s help to terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan or even Tehran’s direct cooperation with al-Qaida. …

Beyond this, though, there has been the possibility of the U.S. government engaging Hizballah. It is inadequate to describe Hizballah as only a terrorist movement. But it is accurate to describe it as: a Lebanese Shia revolutionary Islamist movement that seeks to gain control over Lebanon, is deeply anti-American, is a loyal client of Iran and Syria, uses large amounts of terrorism, and is committed to Israel’s destruction. Hizballah engages in Lebanese politics, including elections, as one tactic in trying to fulfill these goals.

We have seen steps by the current British government toward engaging Hizballah. And the rationale for doing so is based partly on the fact that Hizballah is now part of the Lebanese governing coalition. Of course, in playing a role in that coalition, Hizballah tries to ensure Syria-Iranian hegemony, threatens the lives of American personnel, and other activities designed to destroy any U.S. influence in the region.

And let’s remember that Hizballah may well have been involved in the murder of courageous politicians and journalists in Lebanon who opposed Syria-Iran-Hizballah control over their country. True, direct involvement hasn’t been proven but they are accessories since they have done everything possible to kill the international investigation into the matter. And the trail certainly leads back to their Syrian patrons.

Here’s where I come in. I have received a letter asking me personally to help with a research project. … The letter says that this is a project for the Center for American Progress and that the results “will be presented to senior U.S. policymakers in the administration.”

I am asked to participate by giving my opinions on how the United States can deal with Hizballah “short of engagement” and “would Israeli leaders see benefit in the U.S. talking with Hizballah about issues which are of crucial importance to Israel?”

Answer to first question: Oppose it in every way possible.

Answer to second question: What the [insert obscene words I don’t use] do you think they would say!

The letter continues:

“As you’ve noted, some like John Brennan [advisor to the president on terrorism] is already thinking about a more flexible policy towards Hizballah and it would be extremely useful to get your views on this to ensure anything decided is done properly.”

I read this letter … as saying that the Center for American Progress is going to issue a report calling for U.S. engagement with Hizballah, and that it has been encouraged to do so by important officials in the Obama Administration.

The phrase “to ensure anything decided is done properly,” I take as a give-away to the fact that they are going to push for direct dealing with Hizballah but want to be able to say that they had listened to alternative views. They merely, I am told by those who know about this project, intend to talk to some who disagree for appearances’ sake and throw in a sentence or two to give the report the slightest tinge of balance.

The person heading this project has already endangered the lives of brave Lebanese. For example, he claimed without foundation that Christians were planning to launch a war on Hizballah, providing a splendid rationale for Hizballah to murder opponents on the excuse of doing so in self-defense. Accepting Hizballah rule is defined as the Christians recognizing they are a minority and trying to get along with their Muslim neighbors.

In other words, those opposing Hizballah are presented as aggressors while Hizballah is just the reasonable party that wants to get along. Moreover all this leaves out the community, about the same size as the Christians and Shia Muslims, that has been leading the resistance to Syria, Iran, and Hizballah: the Sunni Muslims.

In short, the person directing the project talks like a virtual agent of Hizballah and its allies, basically repeating what they tell him.

Aside from the fact that Hizballah is not and will not be moderate there are two other problems that these silly people don’t comprehend.

The first is the signal that such statements send to Arabs and especially Lebanese. Concluding that the United States is selling them out and jumping onto the side of the Islamist revolutionaries (an idea that sounds implausible in Washington but very easily accepted as true in Riyadh, Beirut, Amman, and Cairo), Arab moderates will be demoralized, rush to become appeasers, and seek to cut their own deals with what they perceive as the winning side.

The second is the signal that such statements send to the radicals themselves. Concluding that the United States fears them and acknowledges their moral superiority and strategic success, they will be more arrogant and aggressive. …

The last time I was in this situation, it involved a government-funded report about Islamist movements. What I didn’t know is that the word had been passed to the project director from the government agency that he was supposed to urge engagement with Islamists. The intention was to keep out anything critical of the idea. At first, then, I was told to my surprise that my paper would be responded to by another paper written by a supporter of engaging Islamists.

When my paper was submitted, however, it was apparently too strong, it was quickly rejected in an insulting way, and I wasn’t paid for my work. The fix was in and those involved were richly rewarded for saying what was wanted, though the actual implementation of such a policy would be disastrous for U.S. interests, as well as for millions of Arabs as well as Israelis.

Friends of mine have had similar experiences recently regarding papers arguing, for example, that engaging Syria is a great idea and that Damascus can be made moderate and split away from Iran. This is all nonsense, but honors and money are to be gained by saying such things.

So I’m not going to help provide a fig leaf for something masquerading as a serious study but set up to advocate a dreadful policy. It would be the equivalent of participating in a mid-1930s’ project designed to show that Germany had no more ambitions in Europe, a mid-1940s’ project that the USSR wanted to be friends, or a late 1970s’ project that Ayatollah Khomeini was a moderate and that an Islamist Iran would pose no threats.

It’s bad enough to live through an era of dangerous and terrible policy decisions, it’s much worse to be complicit in them.

A state condemned 3

“Condemn” is a very strong word in diplomat-speak. It’s the word most American presidents would apply only to the activities and policies of hostile and extremely delinquent states.

Obama is applying it to Israel.

What has Israel done that is very wrong? Let’s see.

Not long ago it reluctantly agreed under American pressure to suspend building new houses for Jewish occupants on the West Bank, but expressly excluded Jerusalem from the agreement, and the exclusion was accepted by Obama’s State Department.

So when it announced recently that planning permission has been given for some additional apartments in an area to the north of Israel’s capital city, Israel did not expect an objection to be suddenly raised. The development, begun a dozen years ago, does not and will not encroach on any Arab neighborhood. Nobody has objected to it before. The ground had not previously been in use for housing or anything else. Some 18,000 Jews live there now with families growing up. There are normal needs for expansion of accomodation.

But because the piece of wasteland was taken in a war waged against Israel in 1948, and held until 1967 by the British-created state of Jordan, Obama wants it to be rid of its Jewish residents and kept in reserve to be “returned” to Arab possession when there is a state of Palestine.

So the routine announcement that long-planned building in that part of Jerusalem will go ahead has been taken by Obama to be such an insult “to America” that Israel must be condemned for it. The result is a crisis of relations between the two countries.

We contend that the announcement was a handy excuse; that the crisis was engineered; that any pretext would have done.

But what is it Obama needs a pretext for?

Caroline Glick’s answer is this:

Why has President Barak Obama decided to foment a crisis in US relations with Israel? …

Obama’s new demands follow the months of American pressure that eventually coerced Netanyahu into announcing both his support for a Palestinian state and a 10-month ban on Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria. No previous Israeli government had ever been asked to make the latter concession.

Netanyahu was led to believe that in return for these concessions Obama would begin behaving like the credible mediator his predecessors were. But instead of acting like his predecessors, Obama has behaved like the Palestinians. Rather than reward Netanyahu for taking a risk for peace, Obama has, in the model of Yasser Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas, pocketed Netanyahu’s concessions and escalated his demands. This is not the behavior of a mediator. This is the behavior of an adversary. …

Obama’s assault on Israel is likely related to the failure of his Iran policy. Over the past week, senior administration officials including Gen. David Petraeus have made viciously defamatory attacks on Israel, insinuating that the construction of homes for Jews in Jerusalem is a primary cause for bad behavior on the part of Iran and its proxies in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Syria and Gaza. By this line of thinking, if Israel simply returned to the indefensible 1949 armistice lines, Iran’s centrifuges would stop spinning, and Syria, al-Qaida, the Taliban, Hizbullah, Hamas and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards would all beat their swords into plowshares. …

Even more important than its usefulness as a tool to divert the public’s attention away from the failure of his Iran policy, Obama’s assault against Israel may well be aimed at maintaining that failed policy. Specifically, he may be attacking Israel in a bid to coerce Netanyahu into agreeing to give Obama veto power over any Israeli strike against Iran’s nuclear installations. That is, the anti-Israel campaign may be a means to force Israel to stand by as Obama allows Iran to build a nuclear arsenal. …

Obama … seeks to realign US foreign policy away from Israel. Obama’s constant attempts to cultivate relations with Iran’s unelected president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Ahmadinejad’s Arab lackey Syrian dictator Bashar Assad, and Turkey’s Islamist Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan make clear that he views developing US relations with these anti-American regimes as a primary foreign policy goal. …

[And] he  is using his manufactured crisis to justify adopting an overtly anti-Israel position vis-à-vis the Palestinians. …

Likewise, the crisis Obama has manufactured with Israel could pave the way for him to recognize a Palestinian state if the Palestinians follow through on their threat to unilaterally declare statehood next year regardless of the status of negotiations with Israel. Such a US move could in turn lead to the deployment of US forces in Judea and Samaria to “protect” the unilaterally declared Palestinian state from Israel.

General Petraeus has even suggested putting the “Palestinian territories” under his central command.

We don’t believe the Palestinians’ threat. If they declare a state they’ll need to declare its boundaries, and if the boundaries do not embrace the entire state of Israel plus Gaza plus Judaea and Samaria, they’ll  be acknowledging the right of Israel to exist. Borders have two sides. “This side  the State of Palestine; that side the State of Israel”. The pretence of their now being willing to settle for a “two-state solution”  – when they’ve been rejecting such a thing for more than six decades – would instantly be exposed as the lie it is.

But Obama wants there to be a Palestinian state. And if it cannot, because it will not, be a second state in the region, will he then insist that it should be the only state?

We see no reason why there should be a 22nd Arab state.

We see no reason why the 21 existing Arab states shouldn’t assimilate the refugees of the Palestine region just as Israel assimilated the Jews who were expelled by the Arab states in 1948.

We see no reason why Jews shouldn’t live in Arab/Muslim countries just as Arabs/Muslims live in Israel, with full voting and property-owning rights, paying the same taxes, protected by the same laws equally.

We would be happy to see only one state in the region – the State of Israel, not Palestine.

But Obama, and the huge bloc of Islamic countries, and Europe, and Russia, have a vision of a 22-state Arab judenrein Middle East.

If America withdraws diplomatic support, as it is likely to do now; if Iran, bent on destroying Israel, is soon to be nuclear armed with Obama’s consent; and if, in addition, American forces are to be sent to the West Bank to aid Palestinian forces against their Israeli enemy as has been proposed, how good is Israel’s chance of surviving?

Oh really, O’Reilly? 0

We find it hard to believe that Charles Krauthammer or Brit Hume would obey instructions as to what they may say or not say on Fox News.

Yet it does seem that Fox has sold its soul to the devil.

This is from Family Security Matters:

Former prominent guests on Fox News, including Walid Shoebat, contend that the News Corporation has surrendered its “fair and balanced” coverage of Islam and events in the Middle East for a fistful of Saudi cash.

Their contention is based on a series of recent developments within the media giant.

The first development was the news that Rupert Murdoch, CEO of News Corporation, invested $70 million in the Rotana Group, an enterprise owned by Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, a nephew of Saudi King Abdullah. The Rotana Group operates a host of TV channels throughout the Middle East and is a leading producer of Arabic movies.

Next came Mr. Murdoch’s decision to make Abu Dhabi, the headquarters of the News Corporation’s global media operations in the Middle East.

On Monday, the Fox Business Network announced that it will dispatch a full-time correspondent to the Middle East in order to inform Americans of the unique business opportunities in such places as Syria, a country that provides shelter for Hamas, the Islamic Jihad, and Hezbollah and support the insurgents in Iraq.

In the wake of this announcement, Fox news commentators – including Glenn Beck, Charles Krauthammer, A.B. Stoddard and Bill Kristol – condemned Geert Wilders, a well-respected Dutch dignitary and critic of radical Islam, as a “fascist” and a “demagogue.” …

In the past, the former member of the Dutch National Parliament was a frequent guest on Fox News. Last February, Bill O’Reilly welcomed Mr. Wilders to America, while condemning a scared Britain for banning him entrance to the country.

Other news about the parent company of Fox News began to surface, including reports that Kingdom Holding owns at least 7 percent of the News Corporation and has become the second largest shareholder in the Murdoch conglomerate. Some speculate that the actual shares controlled by Kingdom Holding through a hedge fund may exceed 25 percent.

Kingdom Holding is owned by Prince Talal …

Listed by Forbes as the world’s 22nd richest person, Prince Talal also owns substantial shares of Time Warner, Apple, eBay, Disney, and Citibank.

As for charity, he gives millions to Hamas and other pro-Palestinian organizations.

Critics say that Prince Talal’s sizeable investment in the News Corporation accounts for Fox News programs critical of Israel, including a series of special reports in which Carl Cameron and Brit Hume [even he? – JB] alleged that Israel gathered information about the attacks of 9/11 and failed to warn the American people.

Walid Shoebat, a former member of the Palestine Liberation Organization, who converted to Christianity, charges that Fox News now prohibits critics of Islam and Islamic terror from appearing on its broadcasts.

“He himself (Prince bin Talal) said, ‘I just had to make a phone call to [tell them to] stop using the word Muslim’ regarding the rioting in France,” Mr. Shoebat notes. “Bill O’Reilly says to Ibrahim Hooper, the head of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), that he is an upstanding citizen. Since when was the head of CAIR an upstanding citizen?”

Mr. Shoebat adds that viewers will no longer be seeing any so-called “Islamophobes” on Fox.

“Today, I’m not invited at Fox News. Neither is Robert Spencer or Brigitte Gabriel,” he laments. “But Ibrahim Hooper is invited to speak at Fox News. It used to be that experts on terrorism who are critical of the Islamic views [were] able to get a voice on Fox News. Those days are gone.”

Mr. Shoebat says that instead of airing those critical views of Islam, Fox News now legitimizes Hooper, the spokesman for CAIR, a group which he maintains is a front for Islamic terrorists.

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