Category: Do Something About It!


Decades ago, the sociographer Milton Himmelfarb coined the aphorism that “American Jews earn like Episcopalians and vote like Puerto Ricans.” And his words ring as true today as ever. Surveys show that roughly 70 percent of American Jews intend to cast their ballots for President Barack Obama’s reelection next month.  Himmelfarb’s quip indicated that American Jews abjure their economic interests in favor of their liberal values. Certainly it is true that for American Jews to vote for Obama next month they must act against their economic interests. Obama’s economic policies have taken a huge toll on the economic fortunes of American Jews who invest disproportionately in the stock market. His nationalization of the college loan business has given universities impetus to raise tuition rates still further, thus dooming more young American Jews to start their adult lives under a mountain of debt. And it isn’t at all clear how they will be able to pay off this debt since under Obama half of recent college graduates cannot find jobs. Obama’s gutting of Medicare to pay for Obamacare has harmed the medical choices for older Jewish Americans. His war on tax deductions for charitable contributions has placed synagogues, Jewish schools and nursing homes in financial jeopardy. So with economics ruled out as a reason to support Obama we are left with American-Jewish values.
But is Obama really advancing those values? What are those values anyway? Well, there’s civil liberties. American Jews like those. But Obama doesn’t. Take freedom of speech. Obama is the most hostile president to freedom of speech in recent memory. He has advocated implementing the so-called “fairness doctrine” for radio to stifle the free speech of his political opponents on talk radio. He has sought to undermine the freedom of the Internet through federal regulations and intimidation of Internet companies such as Google. He has made repeated and outspoken attempts to intimidate individuals, groups and businesses including Google to bar freedom of speech as relates to criticism of Islam. He has purged the lexicon of the federal government of all terms necessary to describe jihad, Islamic radicalism and terrorism, and so made it impossible for federal employees to examine, investigate, discuss or understand the nature of the greatest national security threat facing the US.  Then there are women’s rights. American Jews like those. True, Obama has distinguished himself as the greatest ally of abortion-on-demand ever. He even supported infanticide of babies who survived abortions when he served in the Illinois legislature. But, we women are a bit more than reproductive machines. We also work and raise families. And Obama’s economic programs hurt women as much if not more than they hurt men. Aside from that, there are females who live outside of the US. American Jews have long been outspoken champions of women’s rights around the world. But here Obama’s record is arguably worse than any president in US history.  Obama has abandoned the women most at risk of gender-based discrimination, rape and murder – the women and girls of the Muslim world. Whereas the Bush administration liberated the women and girls of Afghanistan from the maniacally misogynist Taliban regime, the Obama administration is negotiating with the Taliban and setting the conditions for its return to power. If the signature image of the Bush administration’s war in Afghanistan was that of women voting, the signature image of Obama’s war in Afghanistan is the photo of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai. This week Yousafzai was shot in the head by the Taliban in Pakistan for her defense of the right of girls to go to school.
Then there is the cause of good governance. American Jews like that. But here, too, Obama fails to live up to liberal values of clean politics. Every day seems to bring with it another scandal related to the Obama administration. This week we learned that the Obama campaign is illegally soliciting funds from foreigners. According to a report published by the Government Accountability Institute, some 20% of visitors to the Obama campaign’s fund-raising site “my.barackobama.com” are foreigners, barred by US law from contributing to political campaigns. So, too, the Obama.com website was registered by Robert Roche, a US businessman living in Shanghai with ties to Chinese state-owned companies. Roche is an Obama campaign bundler. Sixty-eight percent of the traffic on the site comes from foreign users. Obama.com is currently managed by a Palestinian rights activist in Maine.
Finally, there is the cause of Israel and US-Israel relations that American Jews are assumed to care about. After the fiasco at the Democratic National Convention when the widespread antipathy for Israel raging in the Democratic Party was broadcast on primetime television, the Obama administration has stopped even trying to hide its contempt for the Jewish state and its American Jewish supporters. Whereas the US refused to walk out of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s obscene address to the UN General Assembly last month, US Ambassador Susan Rice chose to absent herself entirely from Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s address before the body.
Adding insult to injury, last week Obama appointed Salam al-Marayati to represent the US at the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe‘s annual 10-day human rights conference. Marayati is the founder and executive director of the Muslim Public Affairs Committee. As Robert Spencer recalled this week, on September 11, 2001, Marayati gave an interview to a Los Angeles radio station accusing Israel of being responsible for the jihadist attacks on the US. He is an outspoken supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah. And Obama appointed him to represent America at a major human rights conference.
So what is it that drives over two-thirds of American Jews to support Obama? The only issues that come easily to mind are social issues – particularly the two flagship causes of American Jews these days – abortion and homosexual marriage. While it is true that Obama shares their positions on these issues, it is hard to believe that these two issues have become the cri du coeur of more than two-thirds of American Jews. It isn’t that it is wrong for people to support abortions on demand and homosexual marriage. And it isn’t wrong for people to oppose them. There are reasonable, Jewish arguments to be made for a woman’s right to abort her unborn children. But there are also reasonable Jewish arguments for constraining that right. There are Jewish arguments in favor of permitting homosexuals to wed. And there are Jewish arguments opposing such unions.
Then there is the relative urgency of the issues. With the US economy in a rut and American national security increasingly imperiled, are abortion rights and gay marriage really the American Jewish community’s top priorities? True, there are some American Jewish fanatics who are propelled to near violence when faced with opponents of their beliefs. And they are capable of intimidating a large proportion of their fellow Jews into toeing their extremist lines. Their intolerance has been on display in all of its ugliness at synagogues around the US since the start of the election campaign. In one recent, outrageous incident, one gay marriage partisan managed to intimidate his congregation on Erev Yom Kippur.
On the most sacred evening on the Jewish calendar, at Anshe Emet synagogue in Chicago, congregant Gary Sircus led other congregants in walking out of services when, in keeping with synagogue protocol (and common courtesy), Rabbi Michael Siegel acknowledged the presence of US Rep. Michele Bachmann in the audience. After staging the walkout, Sircus went home and began an online assault on Bachmann and on his synagogue for extending the outspoken and stalwart supporter of Israel the courtesy of acknowledging her presence at services. Sircus wrote a letter of support to Jim Graves, Bachmann’s deep-pocketed Democratic opponent in her reelection campaign. In it, he referred to Bachmann as “this evil woman.” Rabbi Siegel did not decry Sircus for his shocking behavior. Speaking to the Chicago Tribune Siegel said, “I am aware of the fact that our congregation’s policy in regards to [welcoming public officials to the community and honoring their presence] clearly caused pain to some members of our community on the most precious day of reconciliation on the Jewish calendar. That we regret deeply.” In a letter of explanation to synagogue board members, Siegel spoke of the need to welcome visitors even if they don’t share the community’s “values.”  But when did the members of Anshe Emet take a vote to determine that support for gay marriage is their shared value? Undoubtedly, Sircus’s success in embarrassing his entire community owed in part to his willingness to intimidate his fellow congregants with his moralistic sanctimony on Erev Yom Kippur. But it isn’t only gay marriage champions who use intimidation tactics to silence their communities into conforming with their views. American Jewish Democratic partisans have taken a leading role in blocking dissenting voices from their midst. For instance, this past May B’nai Emet Congregation in Boca Raton, Florida, invited Amb. Susan Rice to address the congregation. Synagogue officials not only rejected offers to have Rice debate opponents of Obama’s treatment of Israel. They barred community members known for their opposition to Obama from attending the speech. For these synagogue officials, the idea that their partisan prejudice might be challenged was simply unacceptable.
To be fair, there are some American Jews who have been willing to approach politics with an open mind. For instance, Susan Crown, of the Chicago-based Henry Crown business empire, has transferred her support from Obama to Mitt Romney. In an interview with Chicago Magazine Crown explained that she switched candidates last May when Obama gave his speech calling on Israel to withdraw from Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and contract to within the indefensible 1949 armistice lines. Crown said that her switch was due as well to economic and foreign policy considerations. Crown’s arguments for transferring her support from Obama to Romney are all rational. On the other hand, the positions taken by the likes of Sircus and the management of B’nai Emet are emotional and unthinking. Unfortunately, the polls indicate that more than two-thirds of American Jews are with the synagogue bullies at B’nai Emet and with Sircus, not with Crown.
For 70% of American Jews, party loyalty trumps all of their conceivable rational interests. For them, partisan loyalty is more important than facts. They do not want to use independent judgment. They just want to be Democrats. The most disturbing aspect of the surveys of American Jewish voters is not that they are willing to vote for the most hostile US president Israel has ever experienced in order to remain true to their party. The most disturbing aspect of the American Jewish community’s devotion to Obama and the Democrats is that it indicates that the vast majority of American Jews have abandoned their faculties for independent thought and judgment in favor of conformism and slavish partisanship. They have rendered themselves unreachable.
Originally published in The Jerusalem Post.

 

Shira’s note: This is a must see video. It is approximately 20 minutes. Please share it as much as you can so as to underscore the importance of Israel’s existantialism in the Middle East. It’s scary but we must be strong for Israel and the Western world.

Obama has Israel”s back….right in front of his dagger. On the other hand, Israel does have America”s back.

Shira’s note:  As much as I respect and regard Ms. Glick’s perspective on everything she expounds upon, it is always a lengthy read.  With that, it’s worth it. Unfortunately, with us, our time is so limited with everything else, we don’t give ourselves enough time to practice polemics in educating ourselves and others; whereas, personalities such as Ms. Glick makes this, their perspectives finely tuned and wise with as much truth that can be warranted to be read on a daily basis.  It’s my wish that we can take the time to discuss the global issues prevalent today to make a difference micro-globally, to somehow damage ignorance-based hatred and find justice where it is usually hidden and takes too much to find. This is a wish. Let me know if you relate to what I’m saying, and if so, share this blog so others can relate.  Thanks…S.

On Tuesday, Egypt’s chief prosecutor issued arrest warrants against eight US citizens.  Their purported crimes relate either to their reported involvement in the production of the Internet movie critical of Islam that has received so much attention over the past 10 days, or to other alleged anti-Islamic activities. One of the US citizens indicted is a woman who converted from Islam to Christianity. According to the Associated Press, Egypt’s general prosecution issued a statement announcing that the eight US citizens have been indicted on charges of insulting and publicly attacking Islam, spreading false information, and harming Egyptian national unity.  The statement stipulated that they could face the death penalty if convicted. The AP write-up of the story quoted Mamdouh Ismail, a Salafi attorney who praised the prosecution’s move. He claimed it would deter others from exercising their right to free expression in regards to Islam. As he put it, the prosecutions will “set a deterrent for them and anyone else who may fall into this.” That is, they will deter others from saying anything critical about Islam. This desire to intimidate free people into silence on Islam is clearly the goal the heads of the Muslim Brotherhood seek to achieve through their protests of the anti-Islamic movie. This was the message of Muslim Brotherhood chief Yussuf Qaradawi. Three days after the anti-American assaults began on the anniversary of the September 11 jihadist attacks on America, Qaradawi gave a sermon on Qatar television, translated by MEMRI.

Qaradawi struck a moderate tone. He called on his followers to stop rioting against the US. Rather than attack the US, Qaradawi urged his Muslim audience to insist that the US place prohibitions on the free speech rights of American citizens by outlawing criticism of Islam – just as the Europeans have done in recent years in the face of Islamic terror and intimidation.

In his words, “We say to the US: You must take a strong stance and try to confront this extremism like the Europeans do. This [anti-Islamic film] is not art. It has nothing to do with freedom of speech. This is nothing but curses and insults. Does the freedom to curse and insult constitute freedom of speech?”

Both the actions of the Egyptian prosecution and Qaradawi’s sermon prove incontrovertibly that the two policies the US has adopted since September 11, 2001, to contend with Muslim hatred for the US have failed. The neoconservative policy of supporting the democratization of Muslim societies adopted by President Barack Obama’s predecessor George W. Bush has failed. And the appeasement policy adopted by Obama has also failed. Bush’s democratization policy claimed that the reason the Muslim world had become a hotbed for anti-Americanism and terror was that the Muslim world was not governed by democratic regimes. Once the peoples of the Muslim world were allowed to be free, and to freely elect their governments, the neoconservatives proclaimed, they would abandon their hatred of America. As a consequence of this belief, when the anti-regime protests against the authoritarian Mubarak regime began in January 2011, the neoconservatives were outspoken supporters of the overthrow of then-president Hosni Mubarak, despite the fact that he had been the US’s key ally in the Arab world for three decades. They supported the political process that brought the Muslim Brotherhood to power. They supported the process despite the fact that Qaradawi is the most influential cleric in Egypt. They supported it despite the fact that just days after Mubarak was ousted from power, Qaradawi arrived at Cairo’s Tahrir Square and before an audience of two million followers, he called for the invasion of Israel and the conquest of Jerusalem. In the event, the Egyptian people voted for Qaradawi’s Muslim Brotherhood and for the Salafi party. The distinction between the two parties is that Qaradawi and the Muslim Brotherhood are willing to resort to both violent and nonviolent ways to dominate the world in the name of Islam. The Salafis abjure nonviolence. So while Qaradawi called for the riots to end in order to convince the Americans to criminalize criticism of Islam, his Salafi counterparts called for the murder of everyone involved in producing the anti-Islamic film. For instance, Salafi cleric Ahmad Fouad Ashoush issued a fatwa on Islamic websites last weekend calling for American and European Muslims to murder those involved with the movie. His religious ruling was translated by the SITE Intelligence Group on Monday. Ashoush wrote, “Those bastards who did this film are belligerent disbelievers. I issue a fatwa and call on the Muslim youth in America and Europe to do this duty, which is to kill the director, the producer and the actors and everyone who helped and promoted the film. “So, hurry, hurry, O Muslim youth in America and Europe, and teach those filthy lowly ones a lesson that all the monkeys and pigs in America and Europe will understand. May Allah guide you and grant you success.”

These are the voices of democratic Egypt. The government, which has indicted American citizens on capital charges for exercising their most fundamental right as Americans, is a loyal representative of the sentiments of the Egyptian people who freely elected it. The Salafi preacher is a loyal representative of the segment of the Egyptian people that made the Salafi party the second largest in the Egyptian parliament. Qaradawi’s call for the abolition of freedom of speech in America – as has happened in Europe – and to ban all criticism of Islam is subscribed to by millions and millions of Muslims worldwide who consider him one of the leading Sunni clerics in the world. Free elections in Egypt have empowered the Egyptian people to use the organs of governance to advance their hatred of America. Their hatred has been empowered, and legitimized, not diminished as the neoconservatives had hoped. The behavior of the Egyptian government, Qaradawi and the Salafis also makes clear that Obama’s policy of appeasing the Muslim world has failed completely. Whereas Bush believed the source of Muslim hatred was their political oppression at the hands of their regimes, Obama has blamed their rage and hatred on America’s supposed misdeeds. By changing the way America treats the Muslim world, Obama believes he can end their hatred of America. To this end, he has reached out to the most anti-American forces and regimes in the region and spurned pro-American regimes and political forces.

When Obama’s policies are recognized as driven by appeasement, the seeming inconsistency of his war against Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi on the one hand, and his passivity in the face of the anti-regime uprising in Iran in 2009 and the Syrian uprising against the Assad regime today makes sense. Gaddafi was not a threat to the US, so he was unworthy of protection. The mullahs in Iran and Assad are foes of the US. So they deserve protection. Obama has assiduously courted the Muslim Brotherhood from the outset of his presidency. The official and unofficial Egyptian exploitation of the Internet film as a means to intimidate and attack the US into disavowing its core principles is proof that Obama’s theory of the source of Muslim rage is wrong. They do not hate America because of what the US government does. They hate America because of what America is. And it is because of this that since September 11, the rationale for Obama’s foreign policy has disintegrated. Rather than accept this basic truth and defend the American way of life, Obama has doubled down in the only way now available to him. He, his administration, his campaign and his supporters in the media have responded to the collapse of the foundations of his foreign policy by resorting to the sort of actions they accused George W. Bush, his administration and supporters of taking. They have responded with a campaign of political oppression and nativist bigotry directed against their political opponents.

Late last Friday night, law enforcement officers descended on the California home of Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the man who made the film that the Muslims of the newly free Arab lands find so offensive. Nakoula was questioned by federal authorities and later released. His arrest was photographed. The image of a dozen officers arresting an unarmed man for making a movie was broadcast worldwide within moments. Beyond persecuting an independent filmmaker, the White House requested that YouTube block access to it. YouTube – owned by Google – has so far rejected the White House’s request. The Obama administration’s abetment of bigoted nativism to silence criticism of its substantively indefensible foreign policy was on prominent display last Sunday. Obama’s campaign endorsed an anti-Semitic screed published by New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd.

In her column, titled, “Neocons slither back,” Dowd wrote that Republican Presidential and Vice Presidential nominees Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are mere puppets controlled by “neocon puppet master, Dan Senor.” Neocon is a popular code for Jewish. It was so identified by Dowd’s Times’ colleague David Brooks several years ago. Dowd said that “the neocons captured” Bush after the September 11 attacks and “Now, amid contagious Arab rage sparked on the 11th anniversary of 9/11, they have captured another would-be Republican president and vice president, both jejeune about the world.” One telling aspect of Dowd’s assault on Senor as a neoconservative is that he and his boss in the Bush administration, Paul Bremer, were the nemeses of the neoconservatives at the Pentagon. The only thing Senor has in common with the likes of Paul Wolfowitz and Douglas Feith is that all three men are Jews. Moreover, Dowd drew a distinction between supposed “neocons” like Senor, and non-Jewish US leaders Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney who merely “abetted” the neocons. So Senor doesn’t share the same ideological worldview as Feith and Wolfowitz but he’s a neocon. And Cheney and Rumseld do share the same worldview as Feith and Wolfowitz. And they are not neocons.

The Times’ public editor Andrew Rosenthal dismissed claims that Dowd’s column was anti- Semitic, arguing it couldn’t be since she never said a word about Jews. The Obama campaign linked to Dowd’s column on its Twitter account with the message, “Why Romney and Ryan’s foreign policy sounds ‘ominously familiar.'” Obama’s campaign’s willingness to direct the public to anti-Semitic screeds against his political opponents is consistent with the administration’s general strategy for defending policies. That strategy involves responding to criticism not with substantive defense of his policies, but with ad hominem attacks against his critics. His failed economic policies’ critics are attacked as “Wall Street fat cats.” His failed foreign policies’ critics are demonized as ominous neocon puppet masters. There is a difference between appeasing parties that have been harmed by your actions and appeasing parties that wish your destruction. In the 1970s the US appeased the Philippines by transferring sovereignty over the Clark Air Force Base to the Philippine government. America was still America and the US and the Philippines became friends.

 


The 9/11 attacks on the US embassies were not about a movie

Here are a couple of facts: On June 4 the White House confirmed that the US had killed Abu Yahya Al-Libi – OBL’s Libyan lietenant who had moved into Al Qaeda‘s #2 spot after Ayman Zahawiri after the Navy SEALs whacked OBL. On Tuesday 9/11, a tape was released of Zawahiri announcing that Libi had been killed earlier this year by a US drone attack. The Zawahiri tape was made during Ramadan which ended in the middle of last month. Zawahiri called for his terrorist underlings to avenge Libi’s death and especially exhorted Libyans to take revenge.

The attack in Libya was well planned and executed. It wasn’t about a spontaneous protest against some ridiculous Internet movie of Muhammad. The assailants came armed to the teeth, with among other things, RPG 7s. They knew that the US Ambassador was in Benghazi rather than Tripoli. They knew how to track his movements, and were able to strike against him after he and his colleagues left the consulate building and tried to flee in a car. As Israel Channel 2‘s Arab Affairs Correspondent Ehud Yaari noted this evening, you don’t often see well trained terrorists participating in protests of movies. Then there is the attack in Cairo. They were led by Mohammad Zawahiri – Ayman Zawahiri’s brother. According the Thomas Josclyn in the Weekly Standard, the US media has been idiotically presenting him as some sort of moderate despite the fact that in an interview with Al Jazeerah he said said, “We in al Qaeda…”

Egypt’s US supported Muslim Brotherhood President Mohamed Morsi recently released Zawahiri from Egyptian prison. The same Barack Obama who has no time in his schedule to meet with Prime Minister Netanyahu next week in New York, is scheduled to meet Morsi. The Egyptian government has not condemned the attack on the US Embassy in Cairo. But Morsi is demanding that the US government prosecute the film’s creator.

You may be wondering how some movie no one’s heard of has caused such a hullabaloo. Well, as it turns out, the film was screened on an Egyptian Salafist television channel. Obviously the Salafists — many of whom, like Zawahiri, were released from prison by Morsi, wanted to stir up anti-US violence on the eve of 9/11. So if the film is responsible for the violence, a finger needs to be pointed to its chief distributor — Al Qaida’s Egyptian friends and members.

With these facts in hand, it is clear that the attempts to present these acts of war against the US as the consequence of some stupid, nothing movie are obscene attempts to deflect the blame for these unwarranted attacks onto their victims and away from their perpetrators.

Shira’s note: Okay, since this all began, it’s been confusing. We need to get the facts straight before anything, because without the truths involved here, nobody can place judgment or render an absolute opinion on these matters. For me, the only politically correct, or is it incorrect, is to say that the main issue is freedom of speech. Obviously, the perpetrators and governments of Libya and Egypt abhor the idea and want to suppress what we hold sacred to our freedoms.  They hate enough to kill. I do not want the victims to have died in vain. These wonderful people died doing what they felt was right. We want that righteousness to have been planted to see it grow with the same care these wonderful people gave to it. We need to unite.  Whether in prayer or deed do not succumb to stupidities the media would have given to us through their apathy and greed as in their mediums and by all means research the facts out and then render an opinion. It takes time, but if you believe in your principles, then do what you must.  It’s about not being ignorant and adding to the pool of ignorance which births hate and intolerance.  Shira

God, Jerusalem and American foreign policy.  Here’s a must read from Ms. Glick. I am trying to be neutral in this, the Obama administration’s policy towards Israel.  Everywhere I read though, it’s just not looking good.

Obama’s spectacular failure:  Posted: 12 Jul 2012 08:39 PM PDT

Shira’s Note: This one is a hard one to swallow from the office of the president. As much as I would like to disagree and have more faith in Mr. Obama, I cannot. Here, Ms. Glick lays out facts as only she can, well researched and truthful. There is no ignoring these facts. My only hope is that somehow the Obama’s administration’s foreign policy will work out, that maybe we might be missing something, but then I think a terrorist is a terrorist and the extremely virulent nature of them will prove otherwise.  The truth is they will not stop until we are dead, that’s the truth, unfortunately for us, but especially the president and his thinking.  Read on and find out what I’m talking about…

Abdul Rahman Yasin in 2002

Abdul Rahman Yasin in 2002 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Two weeks ago, in an unofficial inauguration ceremony at Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt’s new Muslim Brotherhood President Mohamed Mursi took off his mask of moderation. Before a crowd of scores of thousands, Mursi pledged to work for the release from US federal prison of Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman. According to The New York Times’ account of his speech, Mursi said, “I see signs [being held by members of the crowd] for Omar Abdel-Rahman and detainees’ pictures. It is my duty and I will make all efforts to have them free, including Omar Abdel-Rahman.” Otherwise known as the blind sheikh, Abdel Rahman was the mastermind of the jihadist cell in New Jersey that perpetrated the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. His cell also murdered Rabbi Meir Kahane in New York in 1990. They plotted the assassination of then-president Hosni Mubarak. They intended to bomb New York landmarks including the Lincoln and Holland tunnels and the UN headquarters. Rahman was the leader of Gama’a al-Islamia – the Islamic Group, responsible, among other things for the assassination of Anwar Sadat in 1981. A renowned Sunni religious authority, Rahman wrote the fatwa, or Islamic ruling, permitting Sadat’s murder in retribution for his signing the peace treaty with Israel. The Islamic group is listed by the State Department as a specially designated terrorist organization. After his conviction in connection with the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, Abdel-Rahman issued another fatwa calling for jihad against the US. After the September 11, 2001, attacks, Osama bin Laden cited Abdel-Rahman’s fatwa as the religious justification for them. By calling for Abdel-Rahman’s release, Mursi has aligned himself and his government with the US’s worst enemies. By calling for Abdel-Rahman’s release during his unofficial inauguration ceremony, Mursi signaled that he cares more about winning the acclaim of the most violent, America-hating jihadists in the world than with cultivating good relations with America. And in response to Mursi’s supreme act of unfriendliness, US President Barack Obama invited Mursi to visit him at the White House. Mursi is not the only Abdel Rahman supporter to enjoy the warm hospitality of the White House. His personal terror organization has also been the recipient of administration largesse.

Despite the fact that federal law makes it a felony to assist members of specially designated terrorist organizations, last month the State Department invited group member Hani Nour Eldin, a newly elected member of the Islamist-dominated Egyptian parliament, to visit the US and meet with senior US officials at the White House and the State Department, as part of a delegation of Egyptian parliamentarians. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland refused to provide any explanation for the administration’s decision to break federal law in order to host Eldin in Washington. Nuland simply claimed, “We have an interest in engaging a broad cross-section of Egyptians who are seeking to peacefully shape Egypt’s future. The goal of this delegation… was to have consultations both with think tanks but also with government folks, with a broad spectrum representing all the colors of Egyptian politics.” MURSI IS not the only Arab leader who embraces terrorists only to be embraced by the US government.

In a seemingly unrelated matter, this week it was reported that in an attempt to satisfy the Obama administration’s urgent desire to renew negotiations between the Palestinians and Israel, and to satisfy the Palestinians’ insatiable desire to celebrate terrorists, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu offered to release 124 Palestinian terrorist murderers from Israeli prisons in exchange for a meeting with Palestinian Authority Chairman and Fatah chief Mahmoud Abbas. Alas, Abbas refused. He didn’t think Netanyahu’s offer was generous enough. And how did the Obama administration respond to Abbas’s demand for the mass release of terrorists and his continued refusal to resume negotiations with Israel? By attacking Israel. The proximate cause of the Obama administration’s most recent assault on Israel is the publication of the legal opinion of a panel of expert Israeli jurists regarding the legality of Israeli communities beyond the 1949 armistice lines. Netanyahu commissioned the panel, led by retired Supreme Court justice Edmond Levy, to investigate the international legal status of these towns and villages and to provide the government with guidance relating to future construction of Israeli communities beyond the armistice lines. The committee’s findings, published this week, concluded that under international law, these communities are completely legal. There is nothing remotely revolutionary about this finding. This has been Israel’s position since 1967, and arguably since 1922. The international legal basis for the establishment of the Jewish state in 1948 was the 1922 League of Nations Mandate for Palestine. That document gave the Jewish people the legal right to sovereignty over Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem, as well as all the land Israel took control over during the 1948- 49 War of Independence. Not only did the Mandate give the Jewish people the legal right to the areas, it enjoined the British Mandatory authorities to “facilitate… close settlement by Jews on the land, including state lands and waste lands not required for public purposes.” So not only was Jewish settlement not prohibited. It was required. Although this has been Israel’s position all along, Netanyahu apparently felt the need to have its legitimacy renewed in light of the all-out assault against Israel’s legal rights led by the Palestinians, and joined enthusiastically by the Obama administration. In a previous attempt to appease Obama’s rapacious appetite for Israeli concessions, Netanyahu temporarily abrogated Israel’s legal rights by banning Jews from exercising their property rights in Judea and Samaria for 10 months in 2010. All the legal opinion published this week does is restate what Israel’s position has always been. Whereas the Obama administration opted to embrace Mursi even as he embraces Abdel-Rahman, the Obama administration vociferously condemned Israel for having the nerve to ask a panel of senior jurists to opine about its rights. In a press briefing, State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell banged the rhetorical hammer. As he put it, “The US position on settlements is clear. Obviously, we’ve seen the reports that an Israeli government-appointed panel has recommended legalizing dozens of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, but we do not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlement activity, and we oppose any effort to legalize settlement outposts.” In short then, for the Obama administration, it is all well and fine for the newly elected president of what was until two years ago the US’s most important Arab ally to embrace a terror mastermind indirectly responsible for the murder of nearly 3,000 Americans. It is okay to invite members of jihadist terror groups to come to Washington and meet with senior US officials in a US taxpayer- funded trip. It is even okay for the head of a would-be-state that the US is trying to create to embrace every single Palestinian terrorist, including those who have murdered Americans. But for Israel’s elected government to ask an expert panel to determine whether Israel is acting in accordance with international law in permitting Jews to live on land the Palestinians insist must be Jew-free is an affront. THE DISPARITY between the administration’s treatment of the Mursi government on the one hand and the Netanyahu government on the other places the nature of its Middle East policy in stark relief. Obama came into office with a theory on which he based his Middle East policy. His theory was that jihadists hate America because the US supports Israel. By placing what Obama referred to as “daylight” between the US and Israel, he believed he would convince the jihadists to put aside their hatred of America. Obama has implemented this policy for three and a half years. And its record of spectacular failure is unbroken.

Obama’s failure is exposed in all its dangerous consequence by a simple fact. Since he entered office, the Americans have dispensed with far fewer jihadists than they have empowered. Since January 2009, the Muslim world has become vastly more radicalized. No Islamist government in power in 2009 has been overthrown. But several key states – first and foremost Egypt – that were led by pro-Western, US-allied governments when Obama entered office are now ruled by Islamists. It is true that the election results in Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco and elsewhere are not Obama’s fault. But they still expose the wrongness of his policy. Obama’s policy of putting daylight between the US and Israel, and supporting the Muslim Brotherhood against US allies like Mubarak, involves being bad to America’s friends and good to America’s enemies. This policy cannot help but strengthen your enemies against yourself and your friends. Rather than contend with the bitter consequences of his policy, Obama and his surrogates have opted to simply deny the dangerous reality he has engendered through his actions. Even worse they have come up with explanations for maintaining this policy despite its flagrant failure. Nowhere was this effort more obvious than in a made-to-order New York Times analysis this week titled, “As Islamists gain influence, Washington reassesses who its friends are.” The analysis embraces the notion that it is possible and reasonable to appease the likes of Mursi and his America-hating jihadist supporters and coalition partners. It quotes Michele Dunne from the Atlantic Council who claimed that on the one hand, if the Muslim Brotherhood and its radical comrades are allowed to take over Egypt, their entry into mainstream politics should reduce the terrorism threat. On the other hand, she warned, “If Islamist groups like the Brotherhood lose faith in democracy, that’s when there could be dire consequences.” In other words, the analysis argues that the US should respond to the ascent of its enemies by pretending its enemies are its friends. Aside from its jaw-dropping irresponsibility, this bit of intellectual sophistry requires a complete denial of reality. The Taliban were in power in Afghanistan in 2001. Their political power didn’t stop them from cooperating with al-Qaida. Hamas has been in charge of Gaza since 2007. That hasn’t stopped it from carrying out terrorism against Israel. The mullahs have been in charge of Iran from 33 years. That hasn’t stopped them from serving as the largest terrorism sponsors in the world. Hezbollah has been involved in mainstream politics in Lebanon since 2000 and it has remained one of the most active terrorist organizations in the world. And so on and so forth. Back in the 1980s, the Reagan administration happily cooperated with the precursors of al-Qaida in America’s covert war against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. It never occurred to the Americans then that the same people working with them to overthrow the Soviets would one day follow the lead of the blind sheikh and attack America. Unlike the mujahadin in Afghanistan, the Muslim Brotherhood has never fought a common foe with the Americans. The US is supporting it for nothing – while seeking to win its support by turning on America’s most stable allies. Can there be any doubt that this policy will end badly?

Originally published in The Jerusalem Post.

English: Jonathan Pollard, U.S. Navy I.D. pict...

BI-PARTISAN CONGRESSIONAL LETTER CALLING FOR POLLARD’S RELEASE UNITES AMERICAN JEWRY

Jewish Leaders Thank Congressmen Engel and Smith for Spearheading Unprecedented Bi-Partisan Effort

As an historic bi-partisan “Dear Colleague” letter is being circulated in the U.S. House of Representatives in support of clemency for Jonathan Pollard, a coalition representing the full spectrum of American Jewry has united to urge Members of Congress to sign this urgent plea to President Obama, and to express its gratitude to the lawmakers who initiated this extraordinary bi-partisan effort. Representatives of the Orthodox, Conservative, and Reform Jewish movements have issued written pleas to lawmakers, as well as to their respective constituencies, to generate support for this unprecedented effort to free Pollard. Congressman Eliot Engel (D-NY) and Congressman Christopher Smith (R-NJ), both of whom are veteran members of the House of Representatives, are soliciting signatures on a letter to President Obama, which urges the President to commute Pollard’s sentence to time served. The letter marks the first time Congressional Democrats and Republicans have joined forces in an effort to secure Pollard’s release.

“Acting on the broad consensus of its member organizations, the Conference of Presidents has long supported humanitarian interventions to gain clemency for Jonathan Pollard now in his 27th year of imprisonment,” said Richard Stone, Chairman, and Malcolm Hoenlein, Executive Vice Chairman, of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. “The Congressional letter led by Rep. Engel and Rep. Smith and joined by a large bipartisan group of their colleagues is an important initiative. We urge our member organizations to reach out to their members and affiliates to secure as many co-sponsors as possible. The growing number of elected officials and leaders of all faiths who have called on the President to grant clemency is a recognition that Pollard has served longer than anyone for a comparable crime and it is time for him to be released,” continued Stone and Hoenlein. “On behalf of the Union for Reform Judaism whose 900 congregations across North America encompass 1.5 million Reform Jews, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, with membership of more than 1800 Reform rabbis, we write to request your support for clemency for Jonathan Pollard and to urge you to join a letter to that effect to the President, currently being circulated by Representatives Eliot Engel and Chris Smith,” wrote Rabbi David Saperstein, the Director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, in a letter to Members of Congress. “Mr. Pollard has been imprisoned for 27 years, one of the longest prison terms of any American ever convicted of spying for an ally of the United States. Our reason for supporting clemency for Mr. Pollard’s sentence is not out of a belief that he is innocent, but instead is motivated by a need for fair and just criminal sentencing….[W]e urge you to join this call for clemency, asking the President to act with mercy and grant Jonathan Pollard long-overdue clemency,” continued Rabbi Saperstein. 

“Reps. Eliot Engel and Chris Smith are co-sponsoring this letter to President Obama urging him to commute the sentence of Jonathan Pollard,” wrote the Rabbinical Assembly, which is the international association of Conservative rabbis, in a letter to its membership. “The RA has passed four resolutions most recently in 2011 urging the President to release Mr. Pollard from prison. He has served 27 years, the longest sentence ever given for spying for an ally. We ask those of you residing in the US to communicate with your representative asking him/her to sign the letter being circulated by Reps. Engel and Smith.” “We write on behalf of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, the nation’s largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, to request your support for a grant of clemency to Mr. Jonathan Pollard. Specifically, we urge you to co-sign the ‘Dear Colleague’ letter to the President currently being circulated by Representatives Engel and Smith,” wrote Dr. Simcha Katz, President of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, Rabbi Steven Burg, Managing Director of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America and the International Director of the National Conference of Synagogue Youth, and Nathan J. Diament, Director of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America’s Institute for Public Affairs, in a letter that was sent to Members of Congress. “As Reps. Engel and Smith state, Mr. Pollard broke the law and deserved to be punished for his crime. However, his health is reportedly declining – he has recently been hospitalized for kidney and gallstone problems. It is also clear that Mr. Pollard, who has already been in prison for 27 years, has served a disproportionately severe sentence. The Orthodox Union has joined with others in the Jewish community to state that we believe the time has come for the President to grant him clemency.”

Rabbi Pesach Lerner, the Executive Vice President, Emeritus of the National Council of Young Israel, which has more than 25,000 member families and approximately 140 branch synagogues throughout the United States, Canada, and Israel, noted that the National Council of Young Israel has also been working to generate additional support for the “Dear Colleague” letter. The National Council of Young Israel has been intimately and actively involved with Jonathan Pollard’s plight for approximately 20 years, and has been one of the vocal and most ardent supporters of the movement to free Pollard. Rabbi Lerner communicates regularly with Jonathan Pollard and his wife Esther, and is considered by Jonathan to be his clergy. The Committee to Free Jonathan Pollard stands united with the coalition of American Jewish leaders in urging people across the United States to contact their Congressional representatives as soon as possible to request that they sign onto this historic bi-partisan letter. People can go online to http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/ in order to identify their Congressional representative and get his or her contact information. The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, Rabbinical Assembly, Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, and the National Council of Young Israel strongly encourage their members, congregants, and rabbis to call their representative’s Washington, DC office and ask to speak to, or leave a message for, the representative’s Chief of Staff and let them know that as one of their constituents, you are asking them to sign onto the bi-partisan Engel-Smith “Dear Colleague” letter that is circulating in the House of Representatives, which calls for clemency for Jonathan Pollard.

Pollard has spent more than 26 years of an unprecedented life sentence languishing in a federal prison for passing classified information to Israel, an ally of the United States. The median sentence for this offense is 2 to 4 years. No one else in the history of the United States has ever received a life sentence for this offense. Pollard received his life sentence without benefit of trial, as the result of a plea agreement which he honored and the government abrogated. Pollard has repeatedly expressed his remorse publicly and in private in letters to many Presidents and others. His health has severely deteriorated after nearly three decades in prison. 

Shira’s note: Please voices out there, shout and be heard!! Do Something About It!! Let’s get Jonathan out. Let’s pray for his soul….

——————————————–

IMRA – Independent Media Review and Analysis: Website: www.imra.org.il

 

Shira’s note:  This is a lesson in making sure you do your news homework in that always get as much info as you can so as to make yourself aware of all of the facts before you make an opinion or judgment.  This is a prime example of how news can be twisted to the bias.  Please share…

 

Today’s speech by Iran’s Supreme Leader, the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, about the sanctions on his country and its determination to persist in its quest for nuclear capability was a significant news event. Khamenei served notice on the United States that he would not be bluffed into giving up his nuclear plans. Though he conceded the economic […]/p

via Iran Threatens Israel With Destruction, But the Times Doesn’t Hear It.

This is just my opinion, as much as I have learned through reading, witnessing, hearing, etc., it all comes down to this, it’s all about oil, period.  If we rack our brains around this, most intelligent people can see that whoever controls the oil, controls me, you, and the rest of the world. We can scream our asses off in being against any war, it doesn’t matter because wherever in the world there is war, they are fighting for oil.

On the premise, we see something else about those wars, and you know why, because we don’t want to think that people are dying because of our reliance on oil. News media won’t tell you what the truth is because they want to brainwash you into believing it is something else, but it’s not. It’s because we need oil to survive and the countries that know it are laughing at us and not only laughing but killing us, literally.

Most people also do not want to acknowledge the fact that we are hated, vehemently. It does not matter what we do, say, give in billions of our taxes, share, or anything civilized, these people will not change until all of us are dead, all of us.  Remember, it does not matter what we do.  These people are playing us and our stupidity is giving them the opportunity.

Back to oil, think about it.  Read and find out all there is about it; what countries we buy our oil from, why sanctions don’t work in Iran because we buy our oil from them, why the Egypt so called Spring is not working, why we have to negotiate with terrorist countries because of our reliance on oil. Once you know, once you have gathered enough information on the matter, and it’s just oil mind you, will you start to get the big picture.  All of our wars, all of the hatred, all of the deaths, and all of the evil that makes humans kill other humans, comes down to oil.  Realize this and things will fall into place.

Lastly, and this is really the reason why I wrote this piece is the fact that dependence on oil is our downfall.  We as consumers are killing our earth and it’s not looking great for the future. If things make you mad enough to deny it, all the more in killing Her. The story goes thus, protesters in ending the war in Afghanistan, protesters about our consumption of oil, protesters to get us out of every country we are so called occupying, and of course the old scapegoat of Israeli hatred because we chose life, drop their signs, put away their masks, plan other hate driven acts, and get in their car and drive home.  Get it, get in their car and drive home! How can they assume that wars are not for them to get in their car and drive home, drive to work, drive to the grocery store, or drive the kids to school? We are all hypocrites, myself included.  Although my answer to this principle is stop driving and/or give up the car, I know it is almost impossible, but is it? If we want to end the wars, stop driving.  If we want to save the Earth, stop driving. If we want peace, don’t let other countries that hate us hold us by the, well, you know what. Realize something strongly and if it is so, then things are not so impossible.  It can be done.  It starts with you and me.  Before I end this essay, I did sell my car and now ride an electric bike (smallplanetevehicles.com) to get around. It’s all local, which it should be.

If you have some information to share, please let me know and we can learn together.  Shira

Shira’s note: I came across this video this morn. It is very thought provoking to some. For others, it is downright wrong. All I know for sure is, it is more factual than some might agree. For this, it brings out the very worst in people. If truth be told, it should be the other way around. Shira