Thursday, May 31, 2007

Bush: The final betrayal

There's no other way to put it...President George W. Bush has finally performed the final betrayal on the conservatives who elected him.

The president's remarks yesterday, accusing citizens concerned over the proposed illegal alien amnesty legislation of being racist, fear mongering and `not doing right by America' are even more astounding when compared with Bush's even tempered tolerance of the Angry Left, regardless of the most blatant and at times borderline treasonous assaults on the nation's war effort and foreign policy.

Apparently anyone is `not doing right by America' who looks at the this bill and realizes that the enforcement parts of it are non-existent or unworkable, that it guarantees a continuous low paid immigrant underclass and that the security provisions are suspect, particularly in light of this administration's past performance in this matter.

And that category includes longtime conservative voices like Peggy Noonan, Charles Krauthammer, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity,Newt Gingrich, Laura Ingraham, Glenn Beck and a host of others.

Even talkshow host, columnist and author Hugh Hewitt, a long time Bush loyalist has finally hopped off the train with this one.

My own disillusion with this president goes back, perhaps, to the day after 9/11 when he assured the nation that our enemies' creed was peace, that we were in a `war on terror' (as opposed to actually identifying our actual enemies)and that we should all calm down and go shopping while the terrorists were `brought to justice'.

I gave the president a certain amount of leeway then, partly out of innate loyalty and partly because I couldn't imagine any president not taking decisive action when the country was at war. I've always felt actions speak louder than words.

And indeed they did with this president...the empty `axis of evil' rhetoric, the clumsiness, the cronyism, the so-called `Bush Doctrine the president ignored because some terrorists were more palatable than others, the out of control spending, the pass given to our `eternal friends' the Saudis to foment jihad in this country, the farcical Dubai Ports deal the president tried to ram through for his pals in the UAE and the gross mismanagement of the War on Jihad.

And of course, the open borders, the ultimate hypocrisy when we're spending billions overseas to ensure America's security.

President Bush has amply demonstrated that he could care less what any of us think, or for that matter, about what happens to his own party after he's safely out of office.

The Republican National Committee fired its 65 telephone solicitors last week without giving them the slightest notice. Allegedly, this was because of an antiquated phone system, as if the RNC couldn't afford to simply buy and install a new one.

The reality is that contributions are wa-ay down, with the RNC admitting to a 40% drop over last year. I'd say it's even money that the shortfall is even higher, and what with the president accusing the very people that have supported him through thick and thin of `not doing right by America' and having Bush flack Linda Chavez and others playing the race card, the RNC won't be getting much in the way of donations from ordinary citizens.

Not that this bothers the current occupant of the White House in the least. After all, he won't be running for anything.

Peggy Noonan has the right of it: `.....conservatives and Republicans are going to have to win back their party. They are going to have to break from those who have already broken from them. This will require courage, serious thinking and an ability to do what psychologists used to call letting go. This will be painful, but it's time. It's more than time.'

And as far as I'm concerned, that includes the prospective Republican candidates for president in 2008. Sarkozy won the presidency in France by running against Chirac's record and promising a change, even though he was part of Chirac's party. Anyone running for president as a Republican here will have to do the same, if they expect to win...mark my words on that.

As for President Bush, I have a feeling that he's going to find out the hard way that loyalty to principle and to the people that put him in office isn't an abstract concept.

Henry Waxman, Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and John Conyers, head of the House Judiciary committee are in the middle of a plethora of frenzied investigations of the Bush Administration in a number of areas that are likely to bear some fruit. Don't be at all surprised if articles of impeachment are drawn up.

And as the president's poll numbers plummet into the mid 20's, don't be surprised if some of the congressmen he's throwing under the bus now are less than energetic in defending him later.

Res ipsa loqiter.

Watcher's Council results for 6/01/07

The Council has spoken! A complete list of results can be found at the site of our fearless leader, the infamous Watcher of Weasels

Council News: There is an open seat on the Watcher's Council, and if you feel you measure up, you can apply to the Watcher here.

Thanks and a hat tip, y'all..

I'm once again gratified and honored to note that for the third week in a row, my fellow Council members chose to distinguish my humble efforts. Especially since there were some killer posts this week, to say the least.

This week's winner is:

J O S H U A P U N D I T: A cure for `anti-Zionism' in which I examine `anti-Zionism'...or, as we used to call it before it took on such a politically correct mask, Jew hatred.

I look at the reasons this kind of blatant racism continues to be so pervasive and even acceptable in some quarters, and reveal what I think is the cure for the disease.

And it's a cure that can apply to America hatred as well, even (or especially) as demonstrated by some of our fellow citizens.

In second place was Done With Mirrors: No friend left behind (update) a fine post by Callimachus in which he applauds action by Congress to give visas to some of the many Iraqi and Afghan interpreters who have helped US forces and who's lives might be in danger after we leave.

For non-Council, I'm pleased to see another Council alumnus take the prize, Dr. Sanity: STICKING TO WHAT I KNOW BEST The title of Dr. Pat's post came from an e-mail from a Muslim criticizing her examination of the misogyny inherent in Muslim culture in a previous article: `Just stick to what you know best. i.e cooking an cleaning.' ( sic)

Interesting advice for a trained and highly experienced MD and Psychiatrist!

Dr. Sanity expands on the theme in a superb post that examines the psychosexual nature of Islam and Muslim culture in fine detail. One thing she didn't mention,but I will..the key to understanding that psychosexual nature and the repression of women and female sexuality in Islam lies in the biography of Mohammed, a young but impoverished and uneducated man of 25 who married a wealthy 40 year old widow who undoubtedly made sure Mohammed knew who was paying the bills and wearing the pants during their 25 year marriage until she died, when Mohammed was 50.

Connect the dots.

In second place for non-Council was Kobayashi Maru: From the Mouths of Babes: Climate Analysis That Actually Works a fine post that uses the example of a young 15 year old high school science student's use of data that put much more experienced `climate experts' at the UN's IPCC to shame.

Hearty Kudos to all the winners!

Once again, no breakthrough in Iran/EU talks

Same old story...Iran and the EU ended a new round of talks in Madrid without a breakthrough.

Iran's chief negotiator Ali Larijani ( `How I fooled the West') and EU appeaser- in-chief foreign policy chief Javier Solana met in Madrid again, and as usual failed to make any significant progress on..well...anything.

The occasion for this particular shindig was the new IAEA report that showed that not only was Iran not obeying the previous UN deadline to end its nuclear enrichment program, but they were accelerating it and bringing more centrifuges on line...and that's just at the sites the IAEA is being allowed to see.

Larijani, who must be tired of repeating the same shtick over and over again once again repeated that Iran won't be suspending its illegal nuclear enrichment program in the least, sanctions or no sanctions.

"We have abandoned the (suspension) issue, why doesn't the media abandon this issue? The suspension issue has become a media game," Larijani said.

The two sat in an exclusive hunting estate outside Madrid for four and a half hours..which makes me believe that they simply came to enjoy a four star luncheon on the EU.

Solana, of course, claims that things are `moving forward' in what he described as a "good positive atmosphere" but was forced to admit that there were no concrete results.

Condi Rice weighed in, saying:

"It is time for Iran to change its tactics. The international community is united on what Iran should do and this is to suspend (enrichment of uranium for nuclear fuel)."

Or what, Madame Secretary? The mullahs don't seem to be taking you or your boss very seriously, so far.

And I'm not as certain as you are that the so-called `international community' is all that united on the subject, Madame Secretary.

Some jobs you just can't hire out.

Iran is weak and vulnerable now, but the longer we allow this travesty to go on, the more costly it will be when the inevitable confrontation occurs between America and this fascist, genocidal jihadist regime.

If President Bush hopes to have even a shred of an historical legacy, he had better not leave this for the next president to deal with.

People are starting to talk.

A picture of appeasement

L to R- Gwen Moore, (d-WI),David Price (D - NC), Jeff Fortenberry (R - NE) and Nick Rahall (D-WV) press the flesh with the jihadis

The Egyptian government is - quite rightly, in my opinion - seething at what they call blatant U.S. hypocrisy.

Up above, we see a picture of four US congressmen meeting with politicians last Sunday associated with the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood, the parent group of Hamas, including the Brotherhood's Mohammed Saad el-Katatni. This is just a couple of months after Democrat House Majority leader Steny Hoyer met with the same group, and a month after hijab clad House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was cavorting with Basher Assad, the fascist dictator of Syria.

"The United States says that it doesn't establish relations with a banned group, whether in Egypt or outside Egypt," said Mubarak's spokesman Suleiman Awaad. "The U.S. says it is meeting with the Brotherhood as Parliament members, but doesn't make the same distinction and refuses to talk with Hamas, who is heading the Palestinian government and is occupying the prime minister's seat."

Awaad is totally correct. But of course, being a citizen of a totalitarian regime, he doesn't understand the extraordinary latitude given to appeasement minded lawmakers here in America.

Perhaps they can complete their tour of the jihad network by spending some hang time with Hamas and Hezbollah - at the US taxpayer's expense, of course.

Fred Thompson and Duncan Hunter on Israel...

Regular readers of JoshuaPundit already know that I feel there's a lot to like about GOP presidential candidate Duncan Hunter. He has a stellar voting record on both Israel and national defense . Recently,he contacted Charles over at lgf ( which shows he understands the new media as well!) and asked for permission to do a guest post on Israel to make his position even more clear on the subject:

" I’d like to thank Charles Johnson for giving me an opportunity to talk to his readers at Little Green Footballs about Israel.

I strongly support the wall that the Israelis have built, which has greatly reduced terrorist attacks — and believe that it’s very important for the United States to help Israel improve its missile defense in order to prevent the sort of attacks that country suffered during its war with Hezbollah last year. Incidentally, I’ve been encouraging Israel to build up her missile defense since back in 1987 as well as supporting the funding of joint missile defense technology programs such as the Arrow program.

Additionally, while the United States should do what it can to resolve the conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians, it’s simply not possible for the Israelis to make peace with people who refuse to recognize their existence, kidnap their soldiers, and blow themselves up in crowds of Israeli civilians. So, until the Palestinians renounce terrorism and stop their attacks on the Israeli people, peace will be out of reach. Let me also add that I’ve been to Israel, have seen the importance of regions like the Golan Heights to their security, and believe that Israel should not be asked to give up any more land in order to make peace with the Palestinians.

I consider Israel to be America’s best ally in the Middle East and strongly support Israel’s survival as a free nation. So, if I become President of the United States, people who care about the fate of Israel can feel confident that they’ll have a friend in Duncan Hunter."

Coincidentally, National Review Online posted a kick-ass piece by potential GOP presidential candidate Fred Thompson on Israel that spells out the situation in a nutshell:

Let me ask you a hypothetical question. What do you think America would do if Canadian soldiers were firing dozens of missiles every day into Buffalo, N.Y.? What do you think our response would be if Mexican troops for two years had launched daily rocket attacks on San Diego — and bragged about it?

I can tell you, our response would look nothing like Israel’s restrained and pinpoint reactions to daily missile attacks from Gaza. We would use whatever means necessary to win the war. There would likely be numerous casualties on our enemy’s side, but we would rightfully hold those who attacked us responsible.

More than 1,300 rockets have been fired into Israel from Gaza since Palestinians were given control two years ago. Israelis, however, have gone to incredible lengths to stop the war against them without harming Palestinian non-combatants. But make no mistake, Israel is at war. The elected Hamas government regularly repeats its official promise to destroy Israel entirely and replace it with an Islamic state. Hamas openly took credit for killing one woman and wounding dozens more last week alone.

The Palestinian strategy is to purposely target and kill Israeli civilians. Then, when Israel goes after those launching the attacks, Palestinians claim to be the victims. If Palestinian civilians aren’t hurt in the Israeli attacks, they stage injuries and deaths.

Too often, they garner sympathy and support from a gullible or anti-Semitic media in the international community.

Israelis, themselves, are often incapable of facing the damage they inflict in self-defense. Knowing this, Islamic extremists are using their own populations as human shields.

I’m beginning to wonder how much longer this vicious plot will work though. International sympathy for Palestinians has diminished as the same Islamofascist extremists have brought havoc to Madrid, Bali, Somalia, London and elsewhere. More importantly, Israelis themselves are suffering so badly, they may be on the verge of losing their sympathy for the people who have sworn to kill them.

Imagine what it would be like to live, knowing that a rocket could fall on you or your children at any minute. Half of those who live nearest to Gaza have fled their homes. Those remaining are traumatized by daily warning sirens and explosions.

The irony is that Israel has the military might to easily win the war that is being waged against them today. They haven’t used that might, in the past, out of compassion for Palestinian civilians and because it could trigger a wider regional conflict.

That balance of power is about to change, though. If Iran develops nuclear weapons, the very existence of this tiny nation of Israel will be threatened. The Iranian regime has left little doubt that it intends to see Israel “wiped off the map.” Hamas is using the same language, not coincidentally, and has announced it will begin launching missiles into Israel from the West Bank too.

If the world doesn’t act to stop Iran’s nuclear ambitions, it must be prepared for the consequences of Israel defending itself."

Considering that Rudy Giuliani, the man who threw Yassir Arafat out of Lincoln Center and returned Saudi Prince Alaweed's blood money after 9/11 is also running as a Republican candidate, I hope that American Jews - or indeed anyone who cares about winning the War on Jihad - who's been considering voting Democrat think very carefully about who really has their interests at heart.

Could you imagine uncompromising statements like this coming from the likes of Barak Obama or Mrs. Clinton?

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Divided UN Security Council finally votes to create Hariri tribunal

Well, it's taken months,but the UN Security Council finally voted to establish the Hariri tribunal to investigate and try the assassins of ex-Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

Only took `em close to two years.

Rafik Hariri was murdered, along with 22 other anti-Syrian Lebanese political figures in a bomb blast in Beirut back in February of 2005.

After a preliminary investigation by the UN's investigator Detlev Mehlis, a report was issued back in October of 2005 implicating major figures in the Syrian regime as complicit - a report which none other than Kofi Annan promptly edited to remove the names of five senior Syrian officials from the published version the report, including Syrian Thug-in-Chief Basher Assad's brother Maher and General Assef Shawqat, the president’s brother-in-law and military intelligence chief.

The other three were General Roustum Ghazali, head of special external intelligence and former Syrian military intelligence chief in Lebanon, General Hassan Khalil, liaison between the various Syrian intelligence bodies, and Colonel Mohsein Hamoud, a former military intelligence officer who served in Lebanon.

Since the edited report came out, there's been a stalemate. The Lebanese government couldn't try anyone because of Hezbollah's finally President Siniora asked the UN to move forward and conduct a trial. That didn't even begin to happen until Kofi Annan was safely out of the building.

The indictment is under Chapter 7 of the UN charter,which makes it binding, rather than advisory. The tribunal would try those responsible for the murder of Hariri and at least 16 other political assassinations of Lebanese politicians and journalists who opposed Syria's military occupation of Lebanon.

The final vote was 15-0, with the usual pro-Islamofacist suspects abstaining - Russia, China, Qatar, South Africa, and Indonesia. They were clinging to the fiction that this was a matter for the Lebanese to determine themselves, and that this was a violation of Lebanon's `sovereignty' - even though President Siniora directly asked the Security Council to handle the matter.

If nations like Russia, China and Qatar `abstained' and didn't block the vote , the evidence on Syria's regime must be pretty conclusive.

Needless to say, the Syrian regime has said that they will not cooperate with the tribunal, and any sort of punishment - like, say, meaningful sanctions - is a remote possibility.

Nevertheless, the truth will finally come out...and that may at least vindicate Hariri and the other victims.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Watcher's Council Nominations, 5/30/07

Every week, the Watcher's Council members nominate two posts each, one from the Council members and one from outside for consideration by the whole Council. The complete list of this week's Council nominations can be found at the site of our fearless leader, Watcher of Weasels

Council News: Francis at Eternity Road has decided to resign his seat on the Council to engage in other pursuits. We all wish him well in the future.

However...that means that there's a Council seat up for grabs.If you think you measure up, you can apply to the Watcher here for a unique opportunity to be part of a superb group of writers. Nudge nudge, wink wink, enough said...don't snooze on this one.

OK, here's this week's Council lineup:

1. J O S H U A P U N D I T: A cure for `anti-Zionism' Ahhh, that ol' debbil `anti-Zionism'...or, as we used to call it before it took on such a politically correct mask, Jew hatred!

Why is it so pervasive, and is there a cure? I think there is, and I reveal it here. And, by the way, it can also apply to blatant America hatred as well..even (or especially) as demonstrated by some of our fellow citizens.

2. Done With Mirrors; No friend left behind ( update) Callimachus writes about the need for special legislation to permit translators who worked for the US military to immigrate to America, because their lives are in danger.

He also writes about the Clueless Left wanting to disengage from Iraq while making no provisions for this sort of thing.

Callimachus, unfortunately, fails to address two points: First, why would these people need to flee from the wonderful democratic government we've allowed to take power in Iraq? And second, while I can see the necessity and benefit of removing a limited amount of translators and other assets, we all know that a lot of the 25,000 or more visas the Bush Administration wants to give out, almost all of them to Sunnis, will largely go to either the well connected or other questionable elements. And frankly, I don't think the US needs more Muslim immigration right now, considering how poorly the Administration has done on policing our borders and vetting immigrants to America.

3. Soccer Dad: Talking with the bad guys Soccer Dad ably fisks the idea so beloved of the Baker-Hamilton and CFR crowd - negotiating with nations that are in a defacto state of war with us,and with whom there is no hope of meaningful engagement, like Iran and Syria.

What's even worse, as Soccer Dad points out is that by treating nations like this as anything other than thugs and international pariahs, we encourage their repression of freedom loving elements within those countries.

4. The Glittering Eye: Living on $1 a Meal This week, The Glittering Eye's Dave Schuler writes about an interesting experiment some members of Congress are indulging in - living on $21 worth of food stamps for one week.

Dave actually presents a shopping list and some ideas on how it could be done..

5. Right Wing Nut House: REFLECTING ON 230 YEARS OF BLOOD AND SACRIFICE Rick writes a fine screed about Memorial Day, how the world has forgotten the sacrifices America has made to keep it free and about how the Bush Administration has failed to energize the American people behind our war effort.

6. Rhymes With Right - HuffPo Writer Equates Isolated Christian Nutjob To Islamism's Global Terror Network Greg takes apart HuffPo moron Max Blumenthal's equating of Islamic terrorism with `fundamentalist Christians.'

This is actually pretty common on the Left. Some people are simply clueless until the knife is at their throats.

7. The Colossus of Rhodey: "But isn't the real issue ...?" Hube takes on the hypocrisy of the Left on issues like global warming and immigration.

I agree with him, although it's not limited to the Left..just mostly. This is part of the old Marxist technique of the dialectic, something the communists borrowed from the Church's strategy known as `apologetics'(successfully countering objections to Church doctrine in debate). In the world of academia, it is called deconstruction. Essentially, advancing the agenda is what matters for these folks - facts are whatever you have to make up to do so.

8. Mitt the Mormon:Bookworm Room Ms. Bookworm examines presidential candidate Mitt Romney and the issue of his membership in the Church of the Latter Day Saints.

I too like Mitt Romney, though I would caution Ms. Bookworm about relying on PBS for any useful data on Mormonism simply because,in general, they are hostile to all religions except Islam.

I personally don't think that he faces significant backlash because of his faith,which is grounded in decent American values ( Mormonism, after all, was a revelation designed for the American continent). I think any problems he might have has more to do with his lack of accomplishment in government and electability in general as compared with other GOP candidates.

9. Cheat Seeking Missiles: Bush Defies Warming Autocrats At G8 Laer writes on the potential conflict between President Bush and other nations at the G8 summit on global warming... and on the hysteria this has produced.

Great graphic, BTW!

10. Big Lizards:Blog:Entry “Let Their Victims Come” Dafydd Ab Hugh has an interesting piece on immigration reform and refugees, especially from places like Iraq.

Using Hugh Hewitt's column on this as a jumpoff point, Daffydd voices his disagreement with the idea of a blanket moratorium on immigration from Muslim countries with significant terrorist components because (a) Those refugees are our best source of human intel about those countries and (b) there are plenty of jihadis coming from `white' European countries these days,not to mention the homegrown variety.

He's right on both counts...although, given the Bush Administration's abysmal record on border security and its tolerance for the propagation extremist Islam here at home in America, I'd say extreme caution is advised until we get our house in order. And yes, I would be more inclined to be severely restricting on Muslim immigration to the US, as opposed to, say, Christians fleeing Iraq or non-Muslims from the Balkans until that happens.

11.The Education Wonks: Memorial Day: Just Another Day Of Instruction? EdWonk takes exception to the plans of one school district to treat Memorial Day as business as usual.

That's this week's lineup..enjoy

Abbas' forces defect to Hamas in the West Bank

Fatah and its capo del tutti Mahmoud Abbasi took another hit today in the ongoing Palestinian gang war, as a sizable contingent of the al-Aksa Martyrs' Brigade jumped ship and joined up with Hamas...taking all those shiny new weapons they got from the Bush Administration with them, just like I said they would.

The new group calls itself the Martyr Abu Amar (Yasser Arafat) Brigades, and they are based in Judea and Samaria ( the West Bank) rather than in Gaza. This was a major coup for Hamas, as it shows that they have been able to deeply infiltrate Abbas' forces, to the point where they could secede and form a totally separate Hamas controlled militia.

Some sources say that as much as 40-50% of the al-Aksa Martyr's brigade are now under Hamas command. What's more the revolt has been reportedly endorsed by ex-Fatah-Tanzim terrorist leader, Marwan Barghouti, from his prison cell in Israel, where he's serving six life terms for murdering Israeli civilians in terrorist attacks.

Apparently I was also right about Jibril Rajoub , who's also reportedly endorsed the mutiny...which is why Hamas is pushing him for the new Security Chief's job in Gaza.

Hamas also now has a sizable base for attacks on Israel from Judea and Samaria to add to the attacks from Gaza, including homicide bombings in Israel's major cities.

The IDF and the Shin Bet promptly went into Judea and Samaria to try and neutralize the Fatah rebels by taking down some of the leadership. Among others, they caught Khaled Shawish , a Fatah murderer and gang boss whom Arafat hid for years in his compound in Ramallah. They also managed to get hold of Jamil Tirawi in Nablus, the son of Tawfiq Tirawi, Arafat’s right hand enforcer, who helped found the al Aqsa Brigades.

Mahmoud Abbas has already lasted almost two years longer than I said he would. It remains to be seen how long

As for Israel, they now have an opportunity to finish this nonsense once and for all, and dismantle the terrorist infrastructure that's sprung up on all sides of their country.

I hope they take it.

Let's talk to Iran,shall we?

Musharraf continues to lose support in Pakistan..

Our `ally' Musharraf continues to falter, as support for his regime in Pakistan continues to seep away.

The latest indication was the failed arrest of powerful Pakistani mullah Maualana Fazlullah.

A unit of ninety Pakistani police went to his home district of Swat in order to bring him in on terrorism charges, expecting that he'd only be able to command a few followers to protect him.

Instead, they were met by massive crowds protecting him, so the officers were forced to retreat.

What's even more indicative of the disaffection with Musharraf is that this incident didn't occur in Waziristan, the area that Musharraf essentially ceded to the Taliban and al-Qaeda, but in Pakistan's North West Frontier Province (NWFP), an area that's been considered loyal and quiet for some time.

Fazlullah is the local leader of Tehreek-e-Nafaz-e-Shariat-e-Mohammad (TNSM, or The Movement for the Enforcement of Islamic Laws), an armed militia that fought in Afghanistan alongside the Taliban. Police say he commands thousands of followers, is stockpiling weapons, and reportedly has growing links to Al Qaeda.

To show how this problem spreads westwards, The five Muslim terrorists the British sentenced to life for plotting terrorist attacks in the UK received jihad training in Malakand, a district next door to Fazlullah's.

Part of the problem, as in Lebanon, the Palestinian Authority, Iran and other jihad friendly locales is money. being a jihadi pays better than most other jobs in the area.

In Swat, 49 percent the 1.5 million residents live below the poverty line and 61 percent are illiterate, but jihad clerics like Fazlullah have access to cash from wealthy backers, some of them in places like Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

Fazlullah, for instance, has been able to summon hundreds of volunteers – who only receive meals in exchange – to help build his new madrassah in Mingora, the city of 175,000 where he lives. Situated along the Swat River, the large religious school will someday offer poor students of this city, which has no university, a free education in Fazlullah's brand of jihadi Islam. It's supposed to end up costing around $2.5 million...and that money isn't come from Fazulah's local Muslim flock.

Perhaps, as I suggested on these pages, if we had been more decisive with the Musharraf regime and insisted that he cooperate with us actively to purge the al Qaeda/Taliban/Islamist threats within his country or face the consequences, we might not now be faced with the scenario of an Islamist regime toppling a US `client' from power and gaining control of a nuclear arsenal.

So far, most of Pakistan's military is not calling for Musharraf's resignation...but if they decide at some point that Musharraf is too much of a liability, or if more Islamist views start increasing among the military, especially at the rank and file level, Musharraf is pretty much history.

Another endgame scenario, of course involves an `election by proxy' a common enough solution in countries like this involving the security forces looking the other way while an assassin assists the - ummm - political transition, as it were.

Tragic, yes, and a nice state funeral is called for, as a new, more Islamist friendly regime comes into power...

US - Iran talks in Baghdad end without concrete results

Yesterday, May 28th, the US and Iran had their first face-to-face talks in 27 years, in Baghdad.

According to the US representative, Ryan Crocker, both delegations `agreed on policy and guiding principles' and the talks were positive.

However, if you read between the lines, there's something of a different message.

The US came out and asked Iran point blank to stop arming and training the Shiite militias, and to end the arms and explosives flow from Iran into Iraq. The Iranians reportedly rejected any US accusations of interfering in Iraq, and countered by blaming the Iraqi security situation on the US occupation and on `inadequate preparation of the Iraqi security forces'.

Moreover, Iran actually proposed a `tri-lateral' coordination of Iraqi security composed of the US, the Iraqi government and Iran. In other words, after doing their best to create chaos in Iraq, the Iranians now want to be deferred to as equal partners in any solutions!

Significantly, the Iranian delegation was headed by Hassan Kazemi Qumi, a `diplomat' who is also a senior officer in the Republican Guards' elite Quds Force - the same units that have been caught in Iraq supporting the Shia death squads and militias.

One issue that may or may not have come up is a prisoner exchange. The US is holding a number of Quds force personnel captured in Iraq, while Iran has arrested and imprisoned several
Iranian-Americans visiting in the country on charges of espionage.

This may also be the motive behind the kidnapping of five Britons from the Iraqi government's Finance ministry, in the heart of the heavily fortified `green zone' by men in Iraqi police officers' uniforms complete with a convoy of 19 Iraqi police SUV's.

Once the captives were firmly in tow, the police convoy drove off in the direction of the Mahdi Army's headquarters in Sadr City.

Iran may just be upping the ante and improving its' side of any prisoner swap.

China's Food and Drug regulator gets death penalty!

I haven't covered the Chinese food contamination story much ( for an excellent series of articles, see Dave Schuler's fine work on this subject at The Glittering Eye ) but this caught my attention...a death sentence for China's corrupt top food and drug regulator!

Zheng Xiaoyu, head of the State Food and Drug Administration from 1998 until his sacking in 2005, was convicted yesterday in a Beijing court of taking 6.49 million yuan ($1.04 million) in bribes and for `dereliction of duty'.

Along with the harsh sentence, China announced that it would introduce the country's first food-recall system ever. Obviously, the Chinese are feeling the effects of the scandal over tainted pet food and believe it not, toothpaste.

Aside from pet foods spiked with the chemical melamine which killed dogs and cats in the US, the latest scandal involves Chinese toothpaste imports after reports that toothpaste sold in Australia, the Dominican Republic and Panama were tainted with diethylene glycol, a chemical used in antifreeze and brake fluid. The US has banned all Chinese made toothpaste, and three southern US states have also banned imports of catfish from China.

According to the government-controlled English-language China Daily, the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine - which is the Chinese government department responsible for approving the safety of Chinese exports - claims that the new recall system will focus on "potentially dangerous and unapproved food products".

Apparently the Chinese aren't totally to blame for this situation.Li Yuanping, the administration's head of food imports and exports, claimed that about 56 per cent of the substandard food products imported by the US from China last month were "illegal products" that had not been approved for export by the government.

"It is these illegal products that have tarnished the reputation of all Chinese food products," he said.

According to China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, almost one third of China's 450,000 food production companies, mostly smaller companies employing less than 10 people, were unlicensed.

Food for thought, no? ( sorry)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

The Last Full Measure of Devotion

What makes a man lay down his life for his country? Particularly a free man, in the prime of youth?

For lots of us,the long weekend with the family, the unofficial start to summer, the backyard barbecue and the roadtrip are what Memorial Day is all about. And that is more correct than we imagine...but for reasons I don't think most of us realize.

The Americans who gave their lives - what President Lincoln aptly referred to as `the last full measure of devotion' -did not do so for glory, for conquest, for some turgid political slogan or to enslave and tyrannize others.

They gave their lives to keep the country free, to protect and preserve the people and the nation they left behind.

They made the ultimate sacrifice so that the mainstream of the American public could be free to enjoy a backyard barbecue, a day with the family..or, to put it another way, ordinary day to day life in a free country. They voted with their lives, not for some utopia but to preserve the decent, everyday American life,liberty and pursuit of happiness they left behind. For others,if not for themselves.

There's a spot on a very well travelled freeway not too far from my home that I pass by frequently. It's a huge VA center and memorial cemetery, and it's clearly visible from the highway.

I've been inside before, and I've never once passed by without relecting on the young men and women buried there. They had faith in something bigger than themselves, though many of them probably didn't articulate in quite that way. All of them wanted to live, but they were willing to die,if necessary so that the rest of us could.

That was their heartfelt gift to us, and we owe them our thanks.

Remember that when you're partaking of that divine draught of everyday liberty. And if you see some of the ones that made it home marching in parades to honor the ones that didn't, or simply run into a veteran in the course of the ordinary life that was their gift to us, let them know how much you appreciate it.

Fatah's head of security in Gaza quits

In a major blow to Mahmoud Abbas and Fatah's efforts to take over Gaza, Fatah's security chief in Gaza quit today.

Rashid Abu Shabak, the top Fatah security chief in the Gaza Strip, decided he's had enough and gave his resignation to Abbas.

Abu Shabak's resignation came two weeks after Hamas militiamen raided his villa and killed six of his bodyguards in Gaza City. He hasn't been seen in Gaza surprise there.

Shabak is also a major crony of Fatah gang boss Muhammed Dahlan..which made him persona non grata to Hamas, to say the least.

Now, here's an interesting bit...Hamas has proposed that Abbas appoint Jibril Rajoub, of all people to Shabak's job.

Rajoub used to be the Fatah enforcer head of Palestinian Preventive Security
who helped facilitate all the illegal arms shipments for Arafat (including the infamous Karine-A ) and skim millions of donor aid dollars into Arafat's private eaccounts. And that information came right from the mouth of none other than Arafat's own finance minister Fuad Shubaki.

Rajoub and Hamas PM Ismail Haniyeh used to have some bad blood between them, but apparently they've kissed and made up if Haniyeh wants Rajoub to be Fatah's man in Gaza. And Rajoub's brother, Naif, was an ex-Hamas cabinet minister before the unity government, so Jibril Rajoub is connected...

The Palestinians continue to do their best to make the Mafia look good. It simply amazes me how people can take these people seriously as a candidate for nationhood.

Another Israeli death in Sderot

Oshri Oz, 36, from Hod Hasharon near Tel Aviv, was killed by a Hamas missile hit on his car in Sderot today, May 27th.(z"l)

He left a pregnant wife and a two-year old daughter; his wife had to be hospitalized when she received the news. Another two people were injured by a missile explosion, one of nine Sunday. The missiles were deliberately aimed at the city’s largest public park and community center.

A friend of Oz told Army Radio that he was an "amazing fellow, only good with no bad." The friend said that he and Oz were part of a closely-knit group of friends that had stayed together for over 25 years. "It's hard to speak of him in the past tense. He was always there for us," he said.

I write this because,while you'll find loads of coverage on Palestinian casualties in the dinosaur media, including the most outlandish claims of civilian deaths, you won't find much on Oshri Oz or the family he left behind. You'll also find a deliberate equivalence in the Main Stream media between the Israeli raids on Hamas facilities and missile sites and the Palestinians deliberately targeting civilians in Israel.

Common sense should tell anyone with an ounce of discrimination that is the Israeli were really targeting civilians with the abandon of their Palestinian `peace partners', the Palestinian death toll would be inthe tens of thousands and this war would have been over long ago.

And by the way, it's not just Hamas.

Last night, Palestinians getting a paycheck from Mahmoud Abbas and Fatah struck at the border checkpoints in Jerusalem, injuring four border police in a shooting attack.

The shooters were part of the al-Aksa Martyrs' brigade, and the IDF killed all three of them.

The IDF's response to this carnage has been to launch dozens of targeted missile strikes over the past 10 days that have killed 48 Palestinians and damaged Hamas facilities in an effort to end the Hamas rocket fire from Gaza at Israeli border towns.

So far, it's been unsuccessful. And so far, Mahmoud Abbas has failed to use any of those fancy and expensive security forces and armaments to reign in Hamas, which should tell us which side of the fence he's on.

I'll say it again...the Israelis needn't invade, unless they are going to go all the way, make Gaza part of Israel and displace the current inhabitants. All the Israelis need do is shut off the water and electricity and begin targeting Gaza's infrastructure and the Palestinian leaders to end this thing, and end it quicky. And if Abbas is unwilling to commit his forces in this effort, he's obviously part of the problem and needs to be dealt with in the same fashion.

Either the Israelis will end up with a real peace partner or the end to a ridiculous charade that has already cost far too many lives since Oslo.

Showdown in Lebanon

The US is rushing planeloads full of desperately needed military supplies to the Siniora government in Lebanon in response to their desperate cry for help in battling the Syrian and Iranian proxies, the Palestinian fighters from Fatah Islam and their allies.

Accepting the aid pits the Siniora government directly against Hezbollah, who warned the Siniora government against entering the Nahr el-Bared camp where the main fighting is taking place and against accepting aid from Washington.

About half of Nahr el-Bared's 31,000 `residents' have fled since the fighting began, mostly to the nearby Beddawi refugee camp.

Here's Siniora's dilemma in a nutshell: By accepting the massive US aid, he gives the small part of the Lebanese army still loyal to the government rather than to Hezbollah, Amal or other factions the tools to at least have a chance at defeating the Palestinians and preserving his government in power.

The flip side is that by taking the US aid, he's positioned himself more firmly as
the US dog in a proxy fight against Iran and Syria - which in Lebanon, means Hezbollah and the other Shiite militias.

Not only that, but an all-out assault on Fatah Islam in their headquarters in the Nahr el-Bared camp is alomost certain to rile the 400,000 or so Palestinian `refugees' in other camps, all of which are crawling with armed groups.

The U.S. aid also just might attract other al-Qaeda elements into what they see as a battle against the West and its allies.

No less than Hezbollah's leader Sheikh Nasrallah bluntly advised the Lebanese army not to storm the Palestinian Nahr al-Bared camp or risk entagling Lebanon onthe side of the US against al-Qaeda. The camp and the Palestinian fighters in Fatah Islam, according to Nasrallah, are not to be touched. “We will not accept or provide cover or be partners in this,” he said. Nasrallah said that Hezbollah, Iran and Syria should support the Sunni Fatah Islam group...proof again, as if it were needed that Sunis and Shiites are more than willing to put aside their differences momentarily to unite for jihad against the common enemy.

What this indicates is not only the Iranian and Syrian backing of Fatah Islam (otherwise, Nasrallah would have kept silent)but an opening for Hezbollah to utilize its weaponry and fighters to support Fatah Islam to counterbalance the US aid to Siniora.

This could be the start of another civil war..after which either the Syrians would move back in to `preserve order', or Hezbollah would take over,which is pretty much the same thing.

Friday, May 25, 2007

A cure for `anti-Zionism'

My good friend Soccer Dad had a fine post up last week entitled Zionist on the defense' in which he discusses the veritable orgy of attacks on Israel's legitimacy, and some of the responses to the various charges levied.

They're all fine as far as that goes....but they mostly have little effect on the heart of the problem, the way I see it.

The reason for that, of course, is that when it comes to the anti-Zionist, these are essentially attacks on Israel's very right to exist. And for some reason, Jews continue to take these attacks and treat them as legitimate, intellectual propositions that can be refuted logically.

To put it simply, scratch an `anti-Zionist' and you almost never have to delve too deeply to find a Jew hater. And such people almost never respond well to logic, no matter how flawlessly delivered.

This situation is unfortunately complicated by self-hating Jews who are more than willing to provide cover for `anti-Zionists' by attacking their fellow Jews to show what liberal, understanding people they are. That dishonorable tradition goes back in history to the `anti-Zionists' who took the side of the Seleucid Greeks and Romans against their own people and paved the way for the ancient conquests of Israel. It continues with the Tony Judts, Uri Averneys of today.

So, what's the best way to deal with `anti-Zionism'? Simple - you don't `refute' it, since that kind of racism isn't something that can be `refuted' - you simply confront it head on, forcefully so that people that endorse this kind of tacit racism realize that while they certainly have the freedom to express any cockamamie ideas they might have, there are personal consequences not only for espousing these beliefs, but for enabling them in the name of `academic freedom' or political correctness or a `free exchange of ideas'.

One good example of this was the article I wrote a while back about the successful campaign that got Whole Foods to stop supporting Pacifica's `Radio Intifada' program. Whole Foods finally understood, to their credit, that they were funding jihad and racism and made a commendable decision to change their ways.

Here's another not so good case in point. During this same time period, the Muslim Student's Union, with the connivance of the administration staged a week long `anti-Zionist' hate fest, with kinky side orders of Holocaust denial on the campus of UC Irvine. What's more, the doings at UC Irvine are just one in a long string of such events nationwide. Penn State, Rutgers and plenty of other universities have hosted similar events.

There are plenty of Jewish students at these universities, and organizations like Hillel, and the normal response from them is to put up neat little card tables with leaflets and maybe give a few speeches. Well and good...but it not only does nothing to stop this racist behavior, it enables it, which is why such events keep on being repeated.

So, let's look at this from the other end of the telescope. Have you ever noticed that people like Daniel Pipes, Walid Shoebat, Steve Emerson, Nonie Darwish, Brigitte Gabriel or Robert Spencer rarely if ever appear at America's universities?

Aside from the fact that there's a fair amount of faculty at America's institutions of higher learning that have disdain for their views, here's what's happened whenever any of the above have responded to an invitation to speak on campus - rather than bothering with card tables, leaflets and debate, the Muslims and their allies gathered in howling mobs, shouting down the speakers, refusing to let them continue and in general creating a huge ruckus that disrupted the events and intimidated the university silly enough to allow them to appear on campus.

In other words, almost every time any of them has appeared on campus, the Muslim students and their Angry Left allies have created a totally threatening atmosphere of intimidation and created such expensive and intense security problems, as well as potential liability for the universities that none of them would even dare allow speakers like that to ever return.

Beginning to get the picture?

I'll make it simpler - how do you think Black students would react to an on-Campus, university sanctioned event by the Aryan nation or the Klu Klux Clan?

My father of blessed memory provided me with a clear example of how this works at a very young age, when the City of Los Angeles gave the Nazis a permit to march downtown. Needless to say, when my dad found out about this, I remember him being on the phone for quite some time and making a lot of phone calls.

When the Nazis arrive for their march, they found a fairly sizable group of Jewish war veterans and assorted nogoodniks waiting for them, ready to have a frank debate on their views at street level, as it were.

And when the wanna-be brownshirts got a good look at what was waiting for them, they decided that they weren't quite ready for Valhalla just then and there and departed the scene.

My father's generation of Jews was a little closer in history to the Holocaust, and definitely a bit less tolerant of people who wanted to repeat it.

The Jews weren't finished quite yet. They staged an impromptu rally of their own, tied up traffic and only dispersed after a local rabbi arrived on the scene and appealed to them to leave.

As for the City of Los Angeles, it cost them a fortune in police overtime, as well as a lot of good will. And they never again even thought about giving the Nazis a permit to march.

That, in a nutshell is how you cure `anti-Zionism' - by refusing to tolerate it, by treating it like the blatant bigotry it is, and by responding appropriately....whether it's via a lawsuit, a boycott, or a little guerrilla street theater. And by making it a lot more trouble than it's worth for it's enablers to give it a pass.

Jabotinsky was right.

Inspector Clouseau get's slapped around a little..

The IAEA's very own Inspector Clouseau, Mohammed El-Baradei took a mild bitch slapping today as the Western nations complained to the IAEA chief about his silly remarks undercutting the UN resolutions demanding that Iran end its illegal nuclear enrichment.

What El- Baradei said was that, under his insipid watch, Iran has already gone past the point of no return and that the West should push for what he described as a face-saving compromise that would stop Iranian enrichment activity at its current levels before it reaches industrial scale,which would involve Iran producing large stockpiles of fuel convertible into material for nuclear weapons.

Can you get over the gall of this man? First he either totally failed to notice ( or more likely, deliberately ignored) Iran's illegal clandestine nuclear program for over a decade. Next, he was charged with accurately monitoring Iran's compliance in two separate UN Security council resolutions and failed at that too.

So now, he says that, because of his incompetence or willful dereliction of duty, it's all too late and the Security Council should just bend over, grin, tell Iran we were just kidding, shelve those resolutions and trust them to be nice and end things at this stage of the game!

Faced with that kind of arrogance, even the tools at the UN had to say something.

The U.S., British, French and Japanese ambassadors to the IAEA marched into El Baradei's office to remind him that the Security Council policy was law, adopted unanimously, and that they wanted his support."We made our concerns clear about the need for a complete suspension. We felt his published remarks were not helpful at this time," a British diplomat was quoted by al-Reuters as saying. The U.S. State Department said the ambassadors had "raised their concerns" about El-Baradei's statements."

Maybe they should raise some concerns about this weasel continuing in such a sensitive position.

Iran has basically ignored the third deadline given to them by the Security Council to end their enrichment of nuclear fuel. It remains to be seen what ends up coming from this...but I wouldn't count on any decisive action from the UN.

How the US and Israel are integrating their missile defense systems

Part of the joint US/Israeli Arrow Missile defense shield...

It's no news that the US and Israel have cooperated on a number of joint venture military technology projects. It's a natural match - the US gets access to the fruits of Israeli high tech, some of the most sophisticated in the world, and Israel gets the advantage of American defense manufacturing economy of scale and funding.

Lately, America and Israel have stepped up a number of projects,mostly in the missile defense field, and experts are predicting that the US and Israeli missile defense systems will be fully integrated withing 5 years of less.

Congress just allocated another $25 million for the Arrow Missile defense system's production and integration, and $45 million for the development of the short range David's Sling, a missile system which specializes in countering high trajectory projectiles, such as Hezbollah's Katyusha rockets. They also allocated and $135 million for a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) fire unit.

The moving spirit behind this was none other than the House's ranking Republican on the House Armed Services Committee and GOP presidential candidate Duncan Hunter.

"This motion to recommit is $205 million that is dedicated to integrating our missile defense systems with those of Israel, using the great innovation of Americans ... to defend against this new era of terrorists with high technology," Hunter said in a statement.

The House Democrats on the The Strategic Forces Subcommittee of the Armed Services Committee, chaired by Rep. Ellen Tauscher, (D-Calif) had previously cut funding for these programs and had defeated or blocked previous Republican attempts to add the funding back into the legislation.

All in all, US and Israeli anti-missile systems are scheduled to be fully integrated within 5 years, and a further American investment of $1 billion in the Israeli-American joint programs will be added to the $2.8 billion that's already been committed.

The three sytems work together to be the best shield available for missile threats emanating from Syria, Lebanon, or Iran - the Arrow for intercepting incoming missiles at high altitudes, the THAAD to screen broad areas such as cities, air fields, battle zones or military bases and the Patriots to knock out anything that gets by the first two levels.

The integrated missile defense units got their first test in a hush-hush joint US-Israeli Juniper Cobra exercise held in the Negev in March, 2007. How well things went is obvious from Congress approving the additional funding at the increased level.

The integration of America and Israel's missile defense systems is part of Israel filling a major front line role, along with Poland and Czechoslovakia in the missile shield planned for Europe and the West.

Also part of the system is the superb Israeli-made `green pine' radar system.

The wild card in all this is Putin's Russia. Putin is livid about the prospective US missile shield, and has said that he considers the US implementing an anti-missile system in Europe as a threat to Russia.

With Israel as a major link in the American missile defense system chain, Russia again sees Israel as an obstacle to Russia's ambition for power, control and influence in the Middle East. So Russia has been selling Iran and Syria the latest missiles and hardware, including the Russian Iskander E, the export version of the Kolomna-designed 9M72 short-range ballistic missile currently in use by the Russian army.

This is a short range missile, but the Russians are facilitating the acquisition of long range technology to Iran and Syria as well...and have been for some time.

So Israel may once again be playing the role of an integral ally on America's front line in a new `cold war.'

Remember that, the next time you hear some cretin mouthing off about `all that US aid to Israel.'

Islam Documentary PBS tried to suppress will air - sort of.

Joshua's Army members will remember how I wrote about how PBS silences moderate one instance, by suppressing a documentary called `Islam versus Islamists' by Frank Gaffney, Alex Alexiev and award winning documentary filmmaker Martyn Burke on political grounds.

`Islam versus Islamists' deals with the violence directed at moderate Muslims by radical Muslims and details how a "parallel" Islamist fifth column is developing within the U.S. borders. It was supposed to air as a regular part of PBS' `Crossroads' series.

Instead, PBS shelved it, claiming that it the documentary "demonized Islam" and promoted fear of Islamist organizations like our friends at CAIR.

The reality was that it didn't fit with PBS' Leftist agenda and they flushed the film, along with the $675,000 it cost the taxpayers.

After Burke and Gaffney gave several screenings to legislators and turned the heat up, PBS has agreed to a compromise...they will make `Islam versus Islamists', available to those PBS stations that want to air it as a `special item'...once they produce a discussion segment to go along with it.

What this means, of course, is that the 354 Public Broadcasting Service member station can choose or not choose to put `Islam versus Islamists' on the air.

Given the mindset of most PBS stations, that means that the film will likely not be aired on most PBS outlets - and for those that do, the accompanying `discussion' segment will probably be designed to malign and refute the film's premise with little or no response from anyone who disagrees with the politically correct stance of PBS.

However, I have a distinct feeling that `Islam versus Islamists' is going to have a life of its own outside the confines of PBS.

The truth will out, eventually, no matter how hard th efforts at suppressing it.

Mookie's back in town!

Look what crawled out from under the sink..none other than our old pal Moqtada al-Sadr, who surfaced from hiding for a Friday sermon in the Shiite Kufa mosque in Najaf, Iraq.

"No, no for the devil. No, no for America. No, no for the occupation. No, no for Israel," he chanted at the start of his speech. And of course,many of the roughly 6,000 worshipers in the mosque repeated right after him.

This is the first time Mookie has appeared in public since the start of the Baghdad security crackdown about four months ago, when he reportedly fled to Iran. But he's back now, and reportedly cribbing down in Najaf.

Mookie, of course is calling for the US to leave Iraq that he and his mullah pals in Iran can take over things. Apparently, he came back to Iraq to consolidate his control over the political situation and especially over the Mahdi Army, the Iran armed and trained Shiite militia he leads.

Another reason for his returning, I'm convinced, is to help coordinate a major Iran-backed offensive against US troops over the summer to increase political disaffection here at home prior to the scheduled evaluation in September.

These people can read the news and draw conclusions from the posturing of certain politicians here at home.

Amazingly, instead of clapping this creep in irons, the US is urging him to play a 'positive' Iraq role!

"Now that he's back from four months in Iran, we hope he'll play a useful and positive role in the development of Iraq," said White House national security spokesman Gordon Johndroe.

he will. Just watch.

Alley Oop! Hillary, Obama and Dodd vote against funding the troops.

Senators Clinton, Obama and Dodd (otherwise known as the Democrat presidential candidates) gave a stunning performance when they voted against the new bill submitted to President Bush to fund our troops currently in Iraq and Afghanistan.

All of them seem to have made a decision - that catering to MoveOn and the party's Angry Left constituency for their personal ambitions was more important than voting to support our troops in the field without a set-in-cement pullout date.

I might have had a tad more respect for them if all of them hadn't made pretentious statements about how the previous bill was the right idea, and how this was about needing a `new strategy' rather than `not supporting the troops'. Somehow, I fail to realize how telegraphing our exact pull out date to our enemies constitutes `strategy', or voting against basic funding for men and women we already have in the field constitutes `supporting the troops'.

Can't have it both ways.

As you know, I have my own problems with the way the war in Iraq has been mismanaged, and I especially don't think much of the corrupt pro-Iran Shiite government we're propping up, but I also see the inherent idiocy in a premature pullout that our enemies know all about in advance.

It's important to remember,come election time, that these senators were willing to put their personal ambitions ahead of what was good for the country, to remember what their notions of `strategy' in the War Against Jihad are and to take a lesson from it in how they would perform as Commander in Chief.

Watcher's Council Results, 5/25/07

The Council has spoken! A complete list of results can be found at the site of our fearless leader, the infamous Watcher of Weasels

I'm gratified - and honored, really, given the level of the writing talent in this particular group - to note that for the second week in a row, my fellow Council members chose to distinguish my humble efforts. This week's winner is:

J O S H U A P U N D I T: Israel faces its choices in Gaza in which I examine Israel's dilemma when faced with ongoing rocket barrages and terrorism from its `peace partners' and outline a strategy to deal with the problem.

One of my fellow Council members asks if the political support exists in Israel for the solution I envision. I would assure him that the support exists, but the leadership does not..which, of course is one reason among many that the Olmert government is so unpopular. But then, I expect expect Israel's leadership to change for the better relatively quickly.

I would also remind interested parties that this is not simply Israel's problem, and ask them to consider that (a)this is a major front in the War on Jihad, directed against one of our major strategic allies and (b)virtually every tactic used by Islamic fascism to attack civilian populations world wide was first field tested in Israel.

Both of these factors have major implications for the US.

In second place was Right Wing Nut House: MUSINGS ON A LATE SPRING AFTERNOON Rick Moran's very well written cry of despair on the current political situation. I would only say, optimistic guy that I am, that often the old garbage needs to be cleaned away before something new replaces it.

I have faith in the common sense of the electorate, and in any case, events will not allow us to lapse into a defeatist, isolationist slough. America has survived much worse before.

For non-Council, I'm pleased to see that my own choice for first, TigerHawk: On dehumanizing the enemy in war and the nature of victory was the winner.

This is a must read for the members of Joshua's Army, and explains the psychological attitude we are going to need for victory in this conflict. What's more, remembering the nation's attitude after 9/11, that attitude still exists...provided we have leadership wiling to channel that justified rage and commitment into victory instead of telling us that our enemies' creed is peace and to calm down and go shopping.

In second place for non-Council was another fine entry by my blogpal Robert at Seraphic Secret: The Inbetween War In it, he likewise analyzes the Gaza situation and uses it to arrive at a conclusion many of you have seen expressed on these pages time and again - that there is no way to eliminate Islamic terrorism or al-Qaeda without confronting the nation-states that support, fund and harbor it.

Hearty Kudos to all the winners!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Major US buildup in the Persian Gulf

Less than two weeks after US Vice President Dick Cheney toured the region, the US has suddenly bolstered its forces already in the area with 9 new ships. They sailed through the Strait of Hormuz - according to the US Navy, for training exercises. The total force carries around 17,000 combat and marine personnel. It includes the two aircraft carriers USS Nimitz and USS Stennis, as well as the USS Bonhomme Richard LHD 6 Group, the world’s biggest amphibious strike force.

It's also worth noting that the force sailed into the Gulf on the date that yet another UN deadline to Iran to end its illegal nuclear enrichment expired.

I see this as a sign that President Bush wants to let the mullahs know that the US may not be satisfied with more ineffectual UN sanctions and that the military option is alive and well.

As a matter of fact the forces involved are ideal for the type of campaign that I and a few active duty and ex-military members of Joshua's Army envisioned as being most effective and least costly to the US in dealing with these cockroaches.

The beefed up US presence also stiffens the US stance for the coming US-Iran talks Monday, May 28th, in Baghdad. It is a way of illustrating to Iran and Syria is that if the Baghdad talks fail, and they continue arming Iraq’s insurgents and al Qaeda, there could be what the diplomats refer to as `serious consequences.'

There is major chatter from some of my sources that if Iran continues refusing to give up its quest for nuclear weapons, President Bush is planning to strike at Iran's nuclear, military and economic infrastructure before he leaves the White House. And a number of people think that the ballon could go up by late summer of this year.

If President Bush removes the threat of a nuclear Iran from the table and marginalizes this fascist regime, he will have struck a major blow in the War Against Jihad and changed the whole complexion of the conflict.

Stay tuned....

The Dems capitulate on war funding-and Bush holds an interesting press conference

The Democrats in Congress suffered something of a defeat themselves today, voting for legislation to fund the troops in Iraq without a written-in-stone pullout date. Not only that, but as President Bush revealed in his press conference today, he forced them to cut out billions of dollars worth of special interest pork they had larded the bill with.

For the Democrats, this was a case of choosing the path of least resistance. They didn't have the votes to overide the president's veto, and they didn't have the courage to risk any political fallout for their convictions and look like they weren't supporting the military by simply holding out and shutting off the cash flow to force President Bush's hand. So they went with a bill that funds the war until September and endured the fury of their Angry Left constituency, figuring that these people will forget about it come November 2008.

I wouldn't count on that, if I were the Democrats...but I guess we'll see.

For President Bush's part, his Rose Garden press conference pretty much went over this ground from his point of view, along with a few other topics of interest.

He made the rather elephantine point that Iraq is a sovereign government that has asked us to be there, and that we will leave whenever they ask us to. Hmmmm...does that mean that we going to spend billions of dollars and lives and bring the troops in for any sovereign government that asks us to? I can already hear the phones ringing from half the countries inthe world.

He also reemphasized his support for the Baker-Hamilton Iraq Study Group's words of wisdom, and apparently still hasn't been convinced that his fetish for Arab democracy is a tad misplaced and unrequited.

The president responded to one rather rudely put question about al-Qaeda and why we haven't captured Osama bin-Laden by saying, again, that we will catch him, thathe is in hiding and that if he knew for certain where bin-Laden was he'd go after him.

What the president didn't say (and I honestly can't blame him, given the venue)is that there's another sovereign government,namely our `ally' Pakistan that is sheltering the Taliban and the resurgent al-Qaeda and is most assuredly not asking us to send our military in. Insisting on us staying out, in fact, even when al-Qaeda and the Taliban cross the border into Afghanistan to kill our troops and then run back to safety into Pakistan again.

The president also talked a bit about Iran, saying that he is working with our allies in the EU, as well as with Russia and China for tougher sanctions in view of Iran's continued ignoring of UN resolutions calling for them to stop nuclear enrichment.I wish him luck with that.

Actually,the president's hard line on Iran might hopefully be more than mere bellicose rhetoric this time...we just moved substantial military strength into the Gulf. More on that later...

Catching up after my break..

Howdy Y'all!
Your humble Freedom Fighter was absent starting Tuesday evening due to observance of the holiday of Shavuos, the day when Jews celebrate receiving the Torah from G-d's hands. I meant to post on this before I took off but various leetle last minute details piled up...and unfortunately, Weekend Monkey was campaigning and unable to cover for me.

After all the hard work the little guy is putting into his presidential campaign, I hope he at least gets something out of it.

Anyway, thanks for your forbearance - JoshuaPundit is up, running and blowing down the walls again!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Good news and bad news - what the new Pew survey reveals about America's Muslims

The non-partisan Pew Research Center has a highly revealing new survey on America's Muslims.

It was done utilizing over 55,000 interviews to obtain a national sample of 1,050 Muslims living in the United States. Interviews were conducted in English, Arabic, Farsi and Urdu and the resulting study also draws on Pew's survey research among Muslims around the world.

For starters, the Pew report reveals that contrary to CAIR and the MPAC's outlandish estimates of 7 million Muslims in America, the actual numbers are more like 2.35 million, based on data from this survey and the available Census Bureau data on immigrants' `nativity and nationality'.

Here's the good news - Muslims in America are mainly mainstream and middle class, as compared to Western Europe:

Here's the bad news.

While Muslim Americans reject Islamic extremism and consider themselves Americans first and Muslims second by larger percentages than European Muslims, those statistics looked at through the telescope are nothing to celebrate...and indeed, cause for concern among both non-Muslims and moderate Muslims.

For instance, if only 47% of America's Muslims feel they owe their first allegiance to the Muslim umma as opposed to America, that is still almost half...around a million Muslims if Pew's figures are to be believed.

And only 43% say that Muslims should assimilate with mainstream America and adopt American customs.

Moreover, the overall trend is away from the present mainstream, as the survey reveals that younger Muslims are much more likely than older Muslims to support Islamic extremism and say that homicide bombings and other terrorist attacks can be justified in `defense of Islam.' Around 15% of Muslims 30 and under support terrorist attacks on civilians to `defend Islam', as opposed to around 8% of American Muslims overall...and 60% of Muslims 30 and under think of themselves as Muslims first and Americans second.

Only a relatively few American Muslim Americans believe the U.S.-led war on terror is about combating Islamic extremism, and only 40% of American Muslims say that al Qaeda and Arabs were responsible for the 9/11 attacks. What's more, the percentage rises significantly with Muslims 30 and younger.

Those jihadi mosques financed by the Saudis are bearing their poisoned fruit.

One thing I found questionable ( and frankly, a nauseating example of moral relativism) about the survey was the politically correct attempts to compare Muslim attitudes with the attitudes of Christians expressed on previous surveys on some topics concerning the importance of faith and religion in daily life.

Significantly, there was no comparison of Muslim and Christian attitudes on topics like support for al Qaeda or justification for homicide bombing and terrorism.

Hat tip to Charles over at lgf

France: Legalize illegal immigrants? Mais non!

New French Minister of Immigration Brice Hortefeux

In contrast to the ridiculous posturing and amnesty legislation here, France has some firm ideas on how to deal with immigration - perhaps because they've been down the road already of creating an underclass that's unable or unwilling to be assimilated an dseen the horrendous results.

In one of the first items on the agenda for the new Sarkozy administration, France has said no to mass legalization of illegal aliens.

"We have to put aside massive legalization. It doesn't work and it penalizes, even immigrants," Sarkozy's new Minister of Immigration Brice Hortefeux said on Europe 1 radio.

Policy, he said, would be guided by "firmness and humanism" with "lots of pragmatism."

He also said that he was going to stick to a policy of deporting illegal immigrants from France. The number of deportees is expected to hit at least 25,000 this year, and Hortefeux said he would ensure that figure is reached.

Hortefeux said he's not planning on changing France's version of family reunification, which they call "family grouping," so legal immigrants in France can bring their families there.

But both Hortefeux and Sarkozy want changes to the policy to ensure that those who join other family members in France can be integrated into mainstream French society.

"It must be carried out in respect for the dignity of those who want to come and (in a way) that favors their integration," Hortefeux said.

Sarkozy had said he wants to ensure that those participate in the `family groupings' program in France can speak French and that family members receiving them can support the newcomers.

The French with a common sense immigration policy??? Il y a un nouveau vent de changement soufflant de la France!

US Senate puts off action on immigration bill

The Senate decided to put off any final action on the proposed immigration bill until June, instead of trying to shove it through by Memorial Day.

"It would be to the best interests of the Senate ... that we not try to finish this bill this week," said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., as the chamber began debate on the bill. "I think we could, but I'm afraid the conclusion wouldn't be anything that anyone wanted."

The bill has severe problems that prevented it from being pushed through the Senate quite as rapidly as its proponents and President Bush wanted, to say the least.

Many people objected to what amounts to amnesty combined with unworkable enforcement procedures, the ridiculous "Z" visa provisions, and the mammoth guest worker program.

Illegal immigrant activists claim the bill doesn't go far enough, and dislike any suggestion of curtailing family unification in terms of a `point system.'

While some of the politicians involved in this nonsense are justifiably feeling the heat ( GOP Senators Lindsay Graham and Mel Martinez got booed at gatherings of Republicans yesterday), there is still going to be a lot of pressure to shove this bill through, and the Bush White House is lobbying feverishly for it, especially among Republicans who voted against last year's ridiculous attempt.

Here the crux of the matter in a nutshell - in a post 9/11 world, ingress and egress into the US ought to be treated as a security issue, rather than an economic or social one.

When the US government shows that it can enforce our borders, track down the over 600,000 illegal aliens that have already been ordered deported and can't be found and make a dent finding out who's here and who shouldn't be, then we can talk about legalizing people here who want to assimilate and become citizens and bringing more people in as our needs dictate.

Stay tuned...and keep on your representatives like the plague. Just tell them plainly that if they vote for amnesty, they can count on you supporting their opponent.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Jihad Homer sez....

Israel faces its choices in Gaza

Car hit by Qassams in Sderot that killed one Israeli woman

Faced with an ongoing missile barrage from Gaza on its southern cities, the Israeli government has apparently decided to refrain from any major action in Gaza to end the assault and go back to a strategy that has had mixed results in the past...targeted strikes on terrorist leaders.

Not all terrorist leaders, mind you.The ones affiliated with Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah apparently are exempt. The IDF will be concentrating on Hamas and Islamic Jihad.

As I wrote yesterday, Israel is Between a rock and a hard place in Gaza, a direct result of the retreat two years ago. Either they come in with a full assault on Hamas's stronghold in Gaza, and use the IDF in a bloody campaign to consolidate the rule of that other terrorist, Fatah's Mahmoud Abbas, something that would invoke shrill outrage from the UN and the Palestinian groupies worldwide and which would ultimately not benefit Israel in the least or they provide a limited response and learn to put up with an on again-off again war of attrition that will gradually turn the south of Israel into a ghost town.

The Bush Administration has been pushing for choice number one.

Apparently,the Olmert government has chosen a revised mixture of both. They will attempt to consolidate Abbas' rule by taking out the Hamas political leadership, rather than going into Gaza full bore.

Yesterday, Israel launched a targeted strike on Hamas leader Khalil al-Haya's house in Gaza, where eight people were killed. That brings the toll from Israeli airstrikes up to 35 since Hamas began ramping up the missile barrage last week.

According to Israeli Public Security Minister Avi Dichter, Israel is going to continue to pursue a policy of targeted killings against the Hamas and Islamic Jihad leadership. "Everyone who deals with terror against us should take cover," Dichter told Channel 2 TV. Unless of course, they get a paycheck from Fatah and Mahmoud Abbas.

The direct result of the Israeli air strikes has been to pull the Palestinians together, for now, and end the ongoing gang war in Gaza.Hamas and Fatah issued a joint statement Sunday ordering their gunmen to observe the truce.

"We warn all those who commit a violation that they will be held accountable," it said.

Masked gunmen who had been controlling the streets and taking over apartment buildings and strategic rooftops and checkpoints last week scaled back their presence, and residents who had holed up at home finally ventured out to shop and stock up on supplies.

Meanwhile,both Abbas and Hamas called for international pressure on Israel to end the `criminal attacks.' And Hamas reiterated that they have no plans for any kind of peace with Israel. Today, Hamas official Nizhar Riyan declared again that "Israel must be wiped off the map" and replaced with the state of Palestine. Hamas would fight, he said, until the "last Jew was expelled" - not only from Sderot but from "all of Palestine."

Hamas, of course, continues to launch missiles against Israel. Just this morning, a Qassam hit a car in Sderot's commercial center and woman was killed and a man `moderately injured'. `Moderately injured' by the way is an Israeli press euphemism that can cover things like the loss of limbs, blinding, and severe cuts and lacerations calling for the removal of shrapnel and requiring major surgery. Remember this the next time you see the Qassams downgraded in the dinosaur media as `causing minor casualties' or `largely ineffectual'.

Hamas has also threatened to escalate the conflict by using its forces on the West Bank to attack Israel with homicide bombers, kidnappings and sniper attacks...something it is fully capable of doing, and something that would end up being a joint operation with Abbas' paid thugs in the Tanzim and the al-Aksa Martyr's Brigade.

Needless to say, the Olmert government's ineffectual approach is not popular, especially as it didn't work in the past. Olmert's already shaky coalition took another blow Sunday when Strategic Affairs Minister Avigdor Lieberman threatened to pull his Yisrael Beitenu party out of the government unless the government eliminates the threat from Hamas once and for all.

"Either Hamas is going to be dismantled, or the government is going to be dismantled," Lieberman said in a statement. "This is not an ultimatum, but these are the options."

Well, with all respect to MK Lieberman, the problem is deeper than simply Hamas. It's important to remember that Hamas is the Palestinian government, and Fatah merely its junior partner. They are two sides of the same coin. And sending the IDF in force into Gaza simply to benefit Fatah while leaving Fatah in place, especially given the current Israeli leadership and the ongoing reorganization of the IDF since Lebanon is asking for trouble.

Instead, Israel needs to play the Palestinian's game, only better...and with no restraints. For a start, remember that Gaza is a fairly small area, and one the Israelis have the ability to control most of the ingress and egress to. The Israelis also have control over Gaza's ability to function, since they sell Gaza most of its water and electricity. If Israel pulled the plug, Hamasistan would have major problems in day to day functioning and would become a most unpleasant place to be very quickly.

The Israelis, rather than going in full bore right now could concentrate on using small undercover commando units and air strikes in Gaza to target and destroy the Palestinian infrastructure, weapons depots, supply and command centers while hunting down their fighters, commanders, and leaders 24/7. They could also demand that Abbas either use his security forces against Hamas or be deemed a part of the problem.

The Israeli could then apply that same strategy to the Palestinian areas in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) if terrorist attacks against Israel's civilians heat up there.

Once the Palestinians' ability to strike Israel and function on a day to day basis is eroded, then it might be time to send the IDF in full force.

In short, the Israelis have to realize the essential mistake they made at Oslo, understand that having a terrorist enclave on their borders is simply unacceptable, and that a second Arab Palestinian state is a recipe for continued war and turmoil in the region.

Either Israel would end up with an actual government that had shown its commitment to living next to Israel in peace, or they would have ended the threat to Israel once and for all, and simply dismantled the Palestinian Authority. At that point, real talks on where to resettle these people and where to draw final borders could be made with Egypt and Jordan.