Saturday, April 29, 2006

Sue the bastards - Vicki and Leonard take on Iran

Man, I loved this story, in yesterday's Jerusalem Post.

What lots of Palestinian and Hamas groupies fail to realize is that these terrorist groups have been responsible for the deaths of lots of Americans...and that Iran has been behind a great deal of it.

10 years ago, Vicki and Leonard Eisenfeld's son Matt, 25, a Yale graduate and rabbinical student, was murdered along with his fiancee Sara Duker in a No. 18 bus on Jerusalem's Jaffa Road by Hamas.

"We had the choice of doing nothing or doing something," says Leonard simply, sitting alongside his wife on the sofa of their home in West Hartford, Connecticut. And that was no choice at all. So they set out to create what Leonard calls "a financial deterrent to terrorism."

Adds Vicki: "We were looking for a civil way" to take on the bombers and their sponsors. "No physical aggression. Using the law the way it is meant to be used."

After a great deal of time and effort the Eisenfeld's struggle against the Hamas death cult and against the Iranian government that trained and financed those behind this and so many other murders appears to be actually getting results...and is a landmark to others seeking redress from these killers.

A key part of this rests with the revelations of Hassan Salameh, the Hamas terrorist in charge of the February 25, 1996, attack. Salameh was captured by the Israelis and is serving 46 life terms in an Israeli jail, and he has since sung like the proverbial canary about every aspect of the bombing and its planning - from the time he joined Hamas, through his terror training, to the logistics of the attack and the recruitment of the bomber.

He's conclusively described Iran's direct role, detailing how he was smuggled out of Gaza into Egypt, to Sudan, and, via an Iranian army plane, into a terrorist training camp outside Teheran and back again with instructions and equipment for the bombing and other murders. In Iran, "We trained in weapons, setting explosives, ambush," Salameh said under questioning. "We had 10 instructors, all Iranian."

"Hamas claimed responsibility for the bombing," says Leonard Eisenfeld. But through Salameh, "we were able to demonstrate that he was trained, armed and funded by Iran."

Oddly enough, it turns out that the bomb that killed Matt, Sara and 24 other people on that bus was American-made - containing plastic explosive produced exclusively for the US Department of Defense. It was originally placed into a land mine and given to Egypt as part of US military aid.

Using this information, the Eisenfelds' legal team obtained a judgment in the US courts for both punitive and compensatory damages against the Iranian government.

Collection, of course, was something else.

Along with the Dukers and the Flatow family - Alisa Flatow, a Brandeis student from New Jersey, was murdered in a bus bombing in the Gaza Strip in 1995 - the Eisenfelds received a relatively a small amount of the judgement from sums raised against Iranian assets that have been frozen by the US government. They've used some of that money for charitable contributions and to fund various scholarship programs.

But guess what..our own State Department has fought the legal judgement which now totals around $900 million tooth and nail!

The lawyers for the awardees identified a US real-estate development firm with considerable assets that turned out to be wholly owned by the Iranian government. But the bid to seize its funds was stymied by a State Department contention that the company in question could not be held liable "since it was not managed on a daily basis by the government in Teheran."

And this happened only a few months after President Bush had identified Iran as part of the "axis of evil"!


Apparently there's legislation working its way through Congress now that'll will take the State Department out of the loop and fix this.

While this was ongoing, the attorneys for the victim's families also went overseas to Europe, where the mullahs have between $50 to $80 billion stashed away in various assets.

Believe it or not, the lawyers managed to get the Italian courts to "domesticate" the US court ruling in the case - which means that the Italian courts recognize the judgement as applying in Italy. Assets of Iran in Italy were frozen until the Italian Foreign Ministry intervened, but the toothpaste is out of the tube. According to the Eisenfeld's legal team, the judgment's `domestication' is irreversible, and this is mainly a momentary procedural snafu, until new filings occur and the Iranian assets the plaintiffs want attached are specifically named.

The only way for the Iranians to evade the process, according to the Eisenfeld's lawyer Steven Perles, is for them to empty all the relevant bank accounts. But not just in Italy. "If one EU member domesticates, we ought to be able to enforce it across the EU," he says.

"The Iranians had been arrogant about the whole affair until then," says Perles. "But now they were angry, which is how they should be. We heard that they had trouble paying salaries in some of their investment arms [because of the frozen accounts], and even at their embassy."

What's more, this is only the beginning. There's no shortage of other such potential cases. "Lots of US nationals have been killed by Iranian-backed terror," Perles notes grimly. "Iran is the epicenter of state terror."

In fact, he goes on, "We have a case that's been running for three or four years on behalf of 200 families of US marines killed in the 1983 Beirut bombings. We've had 800 witnesses testify to date. Iran has already lost in the battle over its liability. And we're talking seriously big numbers" in potential damages.

And the Eisenfelds? According to Vickie, their main aim is to "spare other families the kind of anguish that we've been through, of losing our son and his fiancee".

"Hamas says it's not going to quit?" says Vicki. "Well, neither will we. And I don't mean in the financial, legal battle. I mean in the war for our culture, for who we are."

Good for you, Vickie and Leonard. Sue the turbans off the bastards.

Everybody's gotta get into the act-now it's Zawahiri's turn

`Watch my finger now..don't blink are getting sleepy..'

First it was Osama, then it was it's Zawahiri's turn.

Ayman al-Zawahiri just appeared in a new video aired on jihad TV (al Jazeera) today. Hey, this is the third message coming from the al-Qaeda leaders this week...poor media coordination, market saturation, or just some conflicting egos, I wonder?

Zawahiri wore the usual black turban and a white robe in the video and described the leaders of Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Iraq as traitors, and urged Muslims to "confront them".

As I've noticed, this seems to signify a shift inpriorities from Iraq (where Iran is in control) to the Sunni autocracies. That could signify either an admission that Iraq is a lost cause, or simply a demarcation of spheres of influence with al Qaeda's Iranian allies. I think it's a mixture of the two.

Most of the 16 minute jihadjam focused on Pakistan.Zawahiri called on the people and army of Pakistan to attack President Musharraf's administration.

"Every soldier and officer in the Pakistani military should know that Musharraf is throwing them into the burner of civil war in return for the bribes he is getting from the United States," said Zawahiri.

He urged Pakistanis "to remove this traitor from power" and told soldiers to disobey the orders of their commanders "to kill Muslims in Pakistan or Afghanistan".

Zawahiri had a few kind words for the jihadis in Iraq as well, saying that the US, and its allies had "achieved nothing but losses, disasters and misfortunes" in Iraq.

"Al-Qaeda in Iraq alone has carried out 800 martyrdom operations in three years, besides the victories of the other mujahideen," he said. "This is what has broken the back of America in Iraq."

Uh-huh. Ri-ight.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Iran: We don't give a damn about no stinkin' resolutions

Ahmadinejad makes the dreaded sign of the bunny ears

Well, Inspector Clouseau (AKA El Baradi) did his best to come up with a vaugue IAEA report full of loopholes, as I predicted, but even El Baradi couldn't hide the truth.

The report had to come to the conclusion that Iran was not in compliance, was in defiance of U.N. and that that after more than three years of an IAEA investigation, "the existing gaps in knowledge continue to be a matter of concern."

Gee, yah think, Ispector?

The U.N. Security Council is expected to meet next week and start wrangling over a process that could result in sanctions against Iran. Don't hold your breath.

For his part, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad made it clear that no Security Council resolution could make Iran give up its nuclear program in his usual charming and diplomatic way.

"The Iranian nation won't give a damn about such useless resolutions," Ahmadinejad told thousands of people Friday in Khorramdareh in northwestern Iran.

I still think that Ahmadinejad and the mullahs will come up with a last minute phony compromise to `save the peace' -perhaps a bogus Russian enrichment deal- to turn down the scrutiny and allow Iran the three years or less it needs to get the facilty at Neyshabour up and running and begin the industrial scale manufacture of nuclear weapons.....and wait out Bush's term in hopes of being able to deal with a weaker US president, as Amir Taheri has written.

Ahamadinejad and the Iranians have followed Hitler's playbook to the letter so far. It's about time for Munich 2006.

Time to do the mullah dance

We have a problem with Iran. What exactly should we do about it?

Here's a dose of reality: there are few options available, and none of them is pretty..simply because the West has let this fester far too long. We now have to pay the price for a number of years of kick-the-can neglect.

One stream of thought out in the ozone opts for diplomacy, or if not actual diplomacy, just a simple acknowledgement that Iran is now part of the `nuclear club' and we will simply have to live with it.

Except we can't afford to.

`Living with it' would be akin to learning to live with a live rattler in the house...except Iran would be more dangerous. For one thing, there's the distinct possibility- I'd say it's almost a certainty - that Iran would provide nukes down line, to the terrorist groups it sponsors and is closely allied with for use against the West. It has said so, as recently as today. Such attacks could be very hard to trace back to Iran. By then, it might be too late anyway..and if the fingerprints were the least bit uncertain, would a future US president have the will to do so in the face of massive political opposition and street theater from the Angry Left?

Even worse, in some ways, is the idea that Iran might not use the bomb...but instead would use it as a threat to coerce `respect' from the West, pump up the price of oil and gas and beef up its leadership of the Islamist bloc while fomenting conventional terrorism and Iran based Islamist takeovers. Think the Cartoon Jihad was bad? Wait.

And don't believe the nonsense that Iran is `years away from the bomb'. I give it three years max..provided Iran doesn't already have nukes to play with.

The Manhattan Project,using much less sophisticated technology only took 4 years.

What lots of people who think a simple diplomatic solution is possible don't consider is that Iran may actually be seeking a confrontation with the West as a 'divine mission'. Notice I said Iran, not Ahmadinejad...important to remember that he's merely a hired hand of the Supreme Council of Guardians and Khameini.

To fully understand what we’re dealing with here, we need to throw out the notion that we’re dealing with a Western mindset, and examine Iran’s theological and psychological makeup.

All streams of Islam believe in a divine saviour, known as the Mahdi, who will appear at the End of Days. Several Islamic demagogues have raised vast armies and taken territory by utilizing this belief through history.

Iran's dominant Shia "Twelver" sect believes this will be Mohammed ibn Hasan, regarded as the 12th Imam, or righteous descendant of the Prophet Mohammad.

He is said to have gone into "seclusion" in the ninth century, at the age of five. His return will be preceded by chaos, war and bloodshed. After a cataclysmic battle with evil and darkness, the Mahdi will lead the world to an era of universal Dar Islam..domination of the world by Islam and Sharia law.

By all accounts Ahmadinejad and the Supreme Council are consumed with devotion to this Hidden Imam, and the belief that Iran's government must prepare the way for his return. Ahmadinejad and the Council appear to be acting on the throes of a religious fervor, a sense of divine mission.

Just take a look at Ahmadinejad's international debut, a speech to the United Nations.

The UN delegates were expecting Ahmadinejad to make nice and take a step towards defusing the nuclear crisis after Teheran restarted its nuclear program in August.

Hoo, were they surprised!

Instead, they heard Ahmadinejad speaking in apocalyptic terms of Iran and Islam struggling against an evil West and ending with the messianic appeal to Allah to "hasten the emergence of your last repository, the Promised One, that perfect and pure human being, the one that will fill this world with justice and peace".

And bring on that wonderful period of Dar-Islam, submission to Islam.Batta bang, batta-bing!

In a video released all over Iran last November, Ahmadinejad is shown telling one of Iran's clerical rulers that he had `felt the hand of God entrancing world leaders' when he spoke to the UN General Assembly. He talked about how the other members of the Iranian delegation had seen an aura of light around him while he spoke to the UN.

"I felt it myself too," Ahmadinejad says in the movie. "I felt that all of a sudden the atmosphere changed there. And for 27-28 minutes all the leaders did not blink…it's not an exaggeration, because I was looking."

"They were astonished, as if a hand held them there and made them sit. It had opened their eyes and ears for the message of the Islamic Republic."

Maybe, after a few minutes of Ahmadinejad, the UN delegates might have been using a skill of mine that never failed to amaze my friends in high school... the art of sleeping with their eyes open. Or perhaps they were shocked into rapt attention...kind of like people watching an approaching train wreck or one of those slo-mo violence scenes Hollywood loves to serve up.

Ahamdinejad followed this performance up with a stream of statements like the ones about Israel being wiped off the map that startled Westerners but are perfectly in tune with the Qu'rannic vision of the return of the Mahdi and the Last Days. In the Qu'ran, on the Day of Judgement the very rocks and trees will call out to Muslims to kill the Jews hiding behind them.

These were not casual references.

Are Ahmadinejad and the Supreme council now pushing for a clash with the West because they feel safe in the belief of the imminent return of the Hidden Imam?

And are they trying to speed up things in the hope of hastening his reappearance?

Let’s look at Iran's recent history and Ahmadinejad’s to get a few more clues, shall we?

During the Iran-Iraq War, the Ayatollah Khomeini imported 500,000 small plastic keys from Taiwan. After Iraq invaded Iran in September 1980 and the Iranians initially suffered military reverses, Khomeini recruited Iranian children, some as young as twelve years old, and sent them to the front. There, they marched across minefields toward the enemy lines in human waves, clearing a path with their bodies. Every one of them had one of those Taiwanese keys hung around his neck…and the children were told that these were their Keys to open Paradise.

No joke.

These children who ran to their deaths in suicide attacks were part of the Basiji, a mass movement created by Khomeini after the Revolution in 1979 and put on the front lines after the war began. The Basij Mostazafan--or "mobilization of the oppressed"--was a volunteer militia, most of whose members hadn't even turned 18 yet. They went by the thousands, willing martyrs for Khomeini and the regime.

Today the slaughter of the Basiji is a source of Iranian legend and national pride...believe it or not. Since the end of the Iraq war in 1988, the Basiji have vastly increased both in numbers and influence, as a cadre of loyal heroes of the Islamic Republic. They’ve been used mostly as religious police to enforce Sharia in Iran, and as Allah's own storm troopers against dissidents. And Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran’s president, served as a Basij instructor during the Iran-Iraq War…and is now the poster boy for the movement. Recruited from the more conservative and impoverished parts of the population (the exact social class Hitler used for the SA), the Basiji swear absolute loyalty to the Supreme Leader Ali Khameini, Khomeini's successor. During Ahmadinejad's run for the presidency in 2005, the millions of Basiji all over Iran got solidly behind Ahmadinejad in every Iranian town, neighborhood, and mosque and pushed his presidency. He was their guy..and the regime's.

Re-examine that little bit of information for a second…the man who trained children to blow themselves up for Allah at the Mullah’s behest is now the country’s president.

Turn it over in your mind.

The inmates have definitely taken over the Persian asylum. And this suicide martyr complex is deeply engraved in the Iranian/Shia psyche.

After all, why be afraid when the Hidden Imam is on his way?

Something else to turn over in your mind is Iran’s perception of how America and the West has reacted to any confrontation or provocation.

In 1979, the Iranians got away with something no other country has ever done, even in wartime. They seized a US embassy and held diplomats hostage for over a year...and the Carter Administration did nothing about it.

This perception has been reinforced since then by our retreats from Beirut after a Hezbollah suicide attack, our failure to deal decisively with Saddam after defeating him in the first Gulf War and continuing through our retreat from Somalia...not to mention our `nuanced' and indecisive response to having 3,000 of our fellow citizens slaughtered while a significant portion of the adherants of the Religion of peace celebrated it as one happening victory for the Great Jihad. And why wouldn't the mullahs feel that way? Until very recently our leaders couldn't even bring themselves to call the enemy by its right name.

Iran sees us a power in retreat…eager to recoil after any forceful response by the Islamic world. And Iran considers itself the rightful standard bearer of a resurgent Caliphate Islam.

As Amir Taheri has written, the mullahs see Bush as an aberration to the usual Western pattern – a president who can be waited out, while Iran consolidates and upgrades its military, its alliances and its nuclear weaponry.

Diplomacy only works when you are dealing with people that perceive they have something to lose. Although, as I wrote a few months back I wouldn't be surprised to see the Mullahs toy with the diplomacy game for as long as they can, even anounce some sort of token `joint enrichment' scam with Russia as part of that effort to wait Bush out.

Sanctions and multilateral diplomacy has been and will remain a waste of time.

Aside from the fact that Russia, China and certain members of the EU are unlikely to abide by them, the black market is alive and well, especially when you have oil and gas to sell.

So where's that leave us?

The key to solving this little dilemma is to remember that we're not only dealing with Iran's nukes. We are dealing with Iran as the leader of jihad and the Islamist movement - which is exactly how Iran sees itself.

President Bush touched on this when he compared `Militant Islam' with the communist menace of the Cold War. Except that the mullahs and their pals have a very different mindset in some ways. The communists actually cared about staying alive.

Are we prepared to be half as ruthless and thorough as the mullahs are towards us to preserve our lives and freedom?

`A quick surgical air strike' on Iran's nuclear facilities is possible, but only solves half the problem at best and just postpones things, even if we do manage to destroy most of the hidden, protected and dispersed sites our Russian `friends' have so thoughtfully built for Iran.

And anyone who seriously talks about a land invasion and occupation of Iran is likewise not exactly living in reality. While the US military, perhaps with assists from the Ozzies, the Brits(I haven't totally counted them out just yet, Blair's remarks notwithstanding) and others are more than capable of handling the job, the casualties, money and effort involved would be horrendous...not to mention the political fallout from certain quarters. Remember, we are talking about people that consider `martyrdom' a virtue. And why bother, when we don't need to?

While going after Iran's nukes is definitely important, even more important is attacking the means of their obtaining nukes and financing terrorism in the future, as well as sending a message that jihad against the West is no longer a painless option. Aside from military targets, the most effective strike would be at Iran's ports, navy, pipelines, infrastructure and especially at its oil and gas fields. And we will need to do this in an absolutely thorough and even ruthless fashion.

In short, we need to deal with Iran the way we once dealt with Qadaffi and Libya...but on a larger and much more complete scale.

Once that happens, once the regime is effectively decapitated and its fangs drawn, we can isolate the mullahs and their regime until the whole rotten structure collapses and more moderate forces take control. Or not. That's up to the Iranians.

Not only will we have actually eliminated the nuclear threat by eliminating Iran's cash flow, but we will have struck perhaps a fatal blow at the Great Jihad and Islamic terrorism...and shown its proponents that there is a huge price to pay for attacking the West.

Will it be costly? You bet. We can count on the mullahs seeking revenge and retaliation using whatever's left of Iran's surrogates in Iraq, Europe and throughout the Middle East and Central Asia, so we will have to deploy our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan accordingly and allocate the necessary firepower available to deal with that problem. And we might experience a domestic rise in oil prices, or even rationing until our domestic production ramps up.

But an unchecked Iran results in those scenarios or worse anyway, sooner or later. And less ability to change the situation than we have now. No pain, no gain.

Thanks to our neglect and failure to act decisively for the last 27 odd years, we face a choice between bad and worse options, and the cost of dealing with Iran will increase every year it's postponed. How we deal with Iran and jihad is the challenge we face, just as the west has had to face it before. This is a threshhold moment.

Time to do the mullah dance.

The Council results for 4-28-06

Well, the Council has spoken.

The winner for Council posts was Right Wing Nut House DEFEND DISSENT: PUNISH THE LEAKERS

In second place was The Glittering Eye: Tired

Non-council winner was In From the Cold: The McCarthy File

with The Belgravia Dispatch: The Tragedy of George W. Bush in second place.

Complete results can be seen here

Congratulations to the winners!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

PA Minister `loses' $450,000

I swear by Allah I don't know what happened to da cash..


Hamas Foreign Minister Mahmoud al-Zahar reportedly had $450,000 stolen from his hotel room during his visit to Kuwait, the Itim news agency quoted the Kuwaiti media as saying Wednesday.

al-Zahar has been making the rounds of the Arab world lookin' for spare change to help pay the tab for the supposedly broke Palestinian Authority...which also funded the trip for al-Zahar and his entourage, according to Itim, quoting an unnamed official at the Palestinian Finance Ministry as its source.

Apparently the police report al-Zaher made said something about meeting an unveiled virgin in Kuwait City who offered to come up to his hotel room..and then the lights went out and when he woke up the money was gone, y'Allah...

Okay, all jokes aside. A cool $450,000 in cash, “stolen” from Mahmoud al-Zahar’s hotel room in Kuwait? Somehow, I doubt that it's normal procedure for a diplomat to travel around with nearly a half million bucks in cash in a suitcase. And if al-Zaher had really been responsible for losing $450,000 in Hamas cash like that, he'd no doubt take off for parts unknown as fast as he could.

No, this money was a payoff or a payment for goods or services rendered or to be rendered. Some Iranian missles? We can only guess..but I'll be watching for a connection.

This weeks Watcher's Council picks.

Every week, the Watcher's Council nominate two posts each, one from the Council memebers and one from outside for consideration by the whole Council. The complete list of this week’s Council nominations is here. Here are the Council's picks:

In which Pat Santy provides a great analysis of recognizing and dealing with denial in yourself and others. And relates it to the 9/10 mindset.

2. The Glittering Eye:Tired
Dave is frustrated at the state of things today. Haven't we all been there?

3. New World Man - wonders in the world: Something that will never be discussed with intelligence or clarity anywhereMatt Barr discusses freedom of speech issues in the proposed labelling regulations for web pages with sexual content.

4. The Strata-Sphere: Whistle Blowing The Right Way And The Wrong Way AJ tries to come up with a standard for determining when something is whistle blowing and when it's simple leaking.

5. ShrinkWrapped: Defining Terms: The Left Shrink takes a bold stab at defining the Left. Actually, pal, the Left is just a religion..and thus difficult to pin down, IMO...

6. Done With Mirrors:While Europe SleptOooh, I liked this one. I've heard Bruce Bawer on a couple of talk shows. He's a gay man who left the `homophobic' USA for what he thought was freedom in secular Europe..and then he ran into the Muslims. He discusses the risk of fascism in Europe as the population gets more and more frustrated at their politicians' ineptness in even providing for basic safety and protection of the European culture.

7. The Sundries Shack: Back to Sleep. Nighty Night. Daily pre 9/11!

8. The Education Wonks: The Spellings Report: Today's Big NCLB News! How certain school districts are exploiting loopholes in No Child Left behind to hide test scores.

9. Right Wing Nut House: DEFEND DISSENT: PUNISH THE LEAKERS Rick says a leak is a leak. And takes a certain Senator Kerry into the woodshed for insisting that this is somehow `dissent'.

10. Rhymes With Right: I don't see the problem In which Greg calls for an end to the `anchor baby' phenomenon.

11. J O S H U A P U N D I T: Time to do the mullah dance If this information doesn't scare you, and convince you that we need to do something about Iran ASAP, I haven't done my job.

12. Gates of Vienna: Make My Day Ah, Dymphna. Sweetness, charm, grace and one heckuva smackdown for a Useful Idiot that dared cross her path. Better than Mexican wrestling.

Iran's Khameini threatens US..again

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei threatened the US with retaliation for any attack on Iran in a speech made on Iranian TV. The threat comes two days before the UN April 28th deadline on Iran's halting uranium enrichment.

"The Americans should know that if they assault Iran their interests will be harmed anywhere in the world that is possible," Ali Khamenei was quoted as saying by state television.

"The Iranian nation will respond to any blow with double the intensity," he said.

Earlier this week Iran’s nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani warned that if US attacks, Iran will strike back at Central Asian countries’ oil installations.

This is in synch with the pattern established by Iran's rhethoric over the last few months.

The mullahs are adament about not stopping enrichment, and have warned that any `incorrect decisions' from the UN security Council will be ignored.

Iran's president Ahmadinejad upped the ante yesterday at a press conference with Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir.

“Regarding the Iranian nation’s nuclear rights we are not willing to back down an iota”, Ahmadinejad told reporters. He also said that Iran was planning on sharing its nuclear technology with others, as I wrote yesterday, quoting this source.

Either the mullahs are ramping up the pressure prior to a phoney `anouncement' of a joint enrichment program through Russia or they are assuming that the West will back down. After all, it's always worked before...stay tuned.

`United 93' - Movie of the Year

Blogpal and noted commentator Debbie Schlussel has a superb review of the new movie, `United 93'. it details the heroic actions of the passengers who took down the third hijacked airliner on 9/11 that was headed for the White the cost of their own lives.

When I first heard about this movie, I was astounded that today's Hollywod had made it at all. Not only that, but as Debbie's reviews revels, it is not PC in the least. The hijackers and their motivations and ideology are not camoflaughed in the least.

Debbie comments on those who whined about this movie being made `too soon' by reponding forcefully that it was not made soon enough..and that it should be a wakeup call for every American. A must read, written by a great writer living in the Belly of the Beast in Detroit.

Tony Snow becomes the White House Press Secretary

President Bush and White House Chief of Staff Joshua Bolten have made an outstanding choice in Tony Snow. He is exactly what the Bush White House has needed for some time.

He's articulate, brilliant and most importantly...he has the proper understanding of the War on Jihad.

Rather than acting as a simple mouthpiece, Snow has the ability to articulate on his own what's really at stake here. And the ability to make the average Leftist reporter look like an idiot.

Here's a quote from Snow's new boss, President Bush: "Tony already knows most of you," Bush told reporters in the White House briefing room, "and he's agreed to take the job anyway."

Said humorously, of course..but as Muhammed Ali once told me, the funniest joke of all is the truth.

Congrats on the new gig, Mr. Snow.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Dry Bones strikes again

How he does it, I dunno! The one and only Dry Bones : Bin Laden's Been Popping Off. Again.

The Feds bat .500 in the Lodi terrorism trial

Well, better than nothing.

Lodi is a small, sleepy Northern California town (rememeber the old Creedance Clearwater song `Stuck in Lodi again'?). And it was the seat of an amazing jihad cell.

Today, Hamid Hayat, a 23-year-old Pakistani was found guilty of providing material support to terrorists and lying to investigators probing his alleged links to terrorist training camps.

He could end up with a 39-year prison term when he is sentenced on July 14.

Hours before, a jury brought in a mistrial in the case of Hayat's father, Umer Hayat, who had been charged with lying to federal investigators during the same terrorism probe.

Umer and Hamid Hayat initially told the feds they had no knowledge of terrorist training camps in Pakistan. `Course not! But later in videotaped confessions the elder Hayat said he visited several camps as an observer, including a camp where his son had said he had trained....


U.S. Attorney McGregor Scott said in a statement that the government is weighing its options: "Between now and the status conference the court set for May 5, the United States will evaluate its case against Umer Hayat and determine what course of action to pursue."

The FBI arrested Hayat and his son back in June 2005.

Apparently the FBI got an assist from an informant in the local Muslim community.
Good one, guys! And kudos to someone who put his loyalty to his adopted country and US law ahead of loyalty to the umma.

Zarqawi surfaces in a new video

Our old pal Abu Musab al-Zarqawi surfaced today in a video aired on the internet. He said the mujahideen were fighting on despite a three-year "crusader" war.

A statement from the al-Qaeda affiliated Mujahideen Council accompanying the tape said it was the first "video of the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq."

"Your mujahideen sons were able to confront the most ferocious of crusader campaigns on a Muslim state. They have stood in the face of this onslaught for three years," Zarqawi said on the video.

The timing of this is interesting, in view of Osama surfacing again and the subsequent bombing of an Egyptian resort..which has now been linked with the al Qaeda cells in the Sinai.

As I said, it could be a sign that al Qaeda has shifted the battle ground away from Iraq in an attempt to destabilize an already shaky government in Egypt.

Iran stirs the Iraqi pot in Kirkuk

Iran continues to stir the pot in Iraq, hoping to tie up US forces with internal unrest, or even better from Iran's point of view, take sides or be caught in the middle in a civil war of Iran's making.

Iran's latest move is to use it's Shiite militia allies to create tension in the northern oil-rich city of Kirkuk.

This was a relatively quiet area until now.

Both the Badr Force and Moqata al-Sadr's Mehdi Army have sent hundreds of Shiite militiamen to attempt to seize the city from the Kurds. Before, the presence of the Shia militias was minimal here.

Kirkuk is Iraq's third-largest city, and was traditionally majority Kurdish until Saddam Hussein displaced thousands of Kurds in the region and replaced them with Arabs from outside the area.

The Kurds regard Kirkuk as their historic capital, and since the US invasion over 300,000 Kurds have returned to the area, and they are now the majority population again. Shiites in Kirkuk, most of whose families were transferred here by Hussein are believed to make up less than 5 percent of the local population.The Kurds are quite open about using force if necessary to gain control of the city. It's a red line for them.

So far, the Shia militias have been relatively peaceful..perhaps because they are vastly outnumbered by units of the Kurdish Pesh Merga forces.

But more Shia militiamen are apparently on the way, according to one of Sadr's commanders in the city, Abdul Karim Khalifa.

The Shiites are backed with training, arms and funding from I revealed here.

The Kurds have responded by upping the Pesh Merga presence in Kirkuk and Tuz. More Kurdish reinforcements are on the way.

Kirkuk has always been considered a likely flashpoint for an Iraqi civil war..and it looks like Iran may just belooking to provide one, to further distract the Bush Administration from its military buildup.

We may end up having to choose sides fairly quickly.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Today is Yom HaShoah....

The day when Jews memorialize those who were murdered in the Holocaust.

Horribly enough, as the victims and eyewitnesses who remain die off and the living memory dims, as it becomes less common to see elderly people with numbers tatooed on their arms, the forces that want to deny that the Holocaust ever happened get stronger and more insistent. Particularly in academia in the West and in the Islamic world.

To me, the most heartwrenching exhibit in the Museum of Tolerance is a picture of a pile of shoes.Children's shoes from Auschwitz, taken from their owners by the Nazis before they were herded naked into the gas chambers...or worse. I want to weep with sorrow and anger whenever I think of I try not to.

After the camps were liberated, General Eisenhower saw to it that these places of horror were filmed and the atrocities documented. As he wrote in `Crusade in Europe' Eisenhower foresaw a time when it would be convenient in certain circles to deny that the Holocaust happened, and he felt he had a moral responsibility to document it for all time.

Not only for the victims...but to ensure that it never happened to anyone else, ever again.

In that valiant and worthy goal, General Eisenhower failed, through no fault of his own.

Today, as I look at what is happening in Darfur and listen to the threats emanating towards the Jews of Israel from Iran, I think about this, and what it could mean for our own time.

A shout out to Oz and the Kiwis on ANZAC day.

True friendship never dies..allies and friends forever.

Terrorist bombing in Egyptian least 30 dead.

At least 30 people were killed and over 170 injured in three bombings at Dahab, a Red Sea resort on eastern Sinai coast. According to preliminary investigations, Egyptian officials are reporting that the explosions were caused by devices activated by timers – not suicide bombers.

Most of the casualties were European tourists on Easter break. One explosion at the el-Mashrabiyah Hotel is supposed to have left 17 dead, 150 injured. Two other blasts struck a small resturant and a bridge.

At least 64 people died last July in coordinated bombings at hotels in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, south of Dahab. Bombings in and around the Egyptian Sinai resort of Taba in 2004 killed 34 people, including Israeli tourists.

The attack comes one day after Osama's tape aired on al Jazeera.

Tears in the sand: The Armenian Genocide

Today, April 24th, is the day the Armenian people commemorate the genocide against their people by the Turks in 1915.

This was the first modern attempt at genocide, and estimates of the death toll range from 900,000 to 1.5 million people. It was planned and ordered at the highest levels of the Turkish government and was carried out by direct executions, by forced relocations into the desert and by deliberate starvation.

The Turks commited this act of barbarism as a means of enforcing dhimmi, second class status on the largest,most progressive and most cohesive non-Muslim group in the Ottoman Empire and removing them from being obstacles in Turkey's imperialist ambitions.

Here's how it was done..and why it's important today.

In 1908, an extreme nationalist movement in Turkey known as the `Young Turks' deposed the Sultan's government in a coup. A triumvirate of extreme Turkish nationalists took complete dictatorial control, Enver Pasha, Jemal Pasha and Mehmed Talat Pasha. They and the Young Turks had a vision of a new Pan-Turkic empire spreading all the way to Turkic speaking parts of Central Asia. Armenians were the only ethnic group in between these two major pockets of Turkish speakers..and the nationalist Turks wanted them out of the way and marginalized.

When the Turks entered World War One on the side of Germany and the Central Powers, the pretext existed for the eradication of the Armenians.

The first step was to disarm the Armenians and make them completely helpless.

In 1915, Turkish leader Enver Pasha ordered that all Armenian troops in the Ottoman armies be disarmed, and assigned to labor camps. Most of the Armenians recruits were either quietly executed or assigned as laborers under conditions that ensured very few survived.

In the Armenian areas of Anatolia, the Ottomans gave orders for all weapons to be collected `for the war effort'. The Armenians complied, and were left helpless.

On April 24th 1915, hundreds of prominent Armenians were murdered in secret in Istanbul after being summoned to a `special conference'.

After that, orders went out across Anatolia and other parts of the empire for for a `temporary relocation'of the Armenians. People were told to only bring what they could carry. The Armenians complied and were "escorted" by Turkish guards in what became death marches.

The death marches led across Anatolia and into the desert, and the Armenians were raped, starved, murdered, and sold into slavery along the way. The local Turks and Arabs were encouraged to take revenge on the helpless people. Hundreds of young Armenian women and children were sold into slavery. The Turkish `guards' provided no protection, and often took the lead in committing these attrocities.

The Armenians who survived eventually ended up in gulags in the Syrian Desert, the Der Zor, where thousands more died of disease, starvation and thirst.

To this day, the Turkish government denies that any of this happened, and there has been no real punishment or reparations for the crimes against the Armenian people.

This had a direct effect on the future.

Adolf Hitler, when one of his aides questioned whether the West would allow the Holocaust he had planned against Europe's Jews responded: "Who remembers the Armenians nowadays?"

Hitler's tactics were strikingly similar, if more efficient and on a larger scale than the Turks...forced `relocations' to what in fact were death camps. The Jews too were told that that these were `temporary relocations' and to bring only what they could carry.

One could easily ask `how many people remember the Holocaust today?' There are plenty that don't remember, or even worse deny that it happened. Just as the Turks deny what happened to the Armenians.

And this denial means it can happen again.

In our modern times, in front of our eyes, genocide is being committed against the helpless people of Darfur and genocide is again threatened against the Jews of Israel. The lessons of the Armenian Genocide reverberate into our own day. They were the first.

The tears in the sand should never be forgotten.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Hamas is consolidating its rule over the Palestinian Territories.

Although both Fatah's Abbas and Haniyeh of Hamas have made conciliatory noises, the war in the streets still continues. And Hamas is getting the upper hand.

Popular Resistance kingpin Jamal Semhadana's appointment to be `General' of the new Palestinian `security' force by the Hamas interior minister was vetoed by Mahmoud Abbas.

But the reality is that Semhadana is in full control on the ground, and last night ordered his Gaza forces to kill anyone who gets in the way. Two days of violent gun battles clashes in Gaza City left 40 injured.

The `security units' under Semhadana’s orders are not only thugs and gunmen from his his own Popular Resistance Committees, but include units from Hamas’s military wing Ezz-e-Din al-Qassam. This was the first time the Hamas had deployed its military arm as a special security unit on support of its government.

Hamas is gradually boxing Palestinian Authority chairman Abbas into a corner, especially in Gaza. As we've seen, Abbas issued two “executive orders” Friday. One was supposed to cancel Jamal Semhadana's appointment by the interior minister, Said Siyam..and the second was supposed to cancel the new “police force” Semhadana was going to build out of terrorist groups.

Both orders were quashed the same day. Palestinian Interior Ministry spokesman Khaled Abu Hilal, a Fatah turncoat who has latched on to the Hamas bandwagon stated: “We are pressing ahead with our plan.”

In a speech in Damascus, Hamas political chief Khaled Meshaal accused Abbbas and Fatah of attempting to topple Hamas rule by a “military coup,” as a tool of the Americans and Zionists. He said that such tactics wouldn't work and called Fatah loyalists “miserable mercenaries.”

Fatah took to the streets in Gaza commanded by Samir Mashrawi, deputy chief of the Gaza Preventive Security Service. Thirty people were wounded in ensuing clashes with Hamas loyalists. To quell the riot, Hamas publicly offered Abbas a face-saver by pretending to drop the new police force.

But Semhadana stayed on, the force is a reality and he is continuing his job of taking over the 50,000-strong Palestinian security force and purging Fatah loyalists.

Truth is, Abbas has little real power anymore...and no one should be decieved by his threats to `fire' the Hamas government. Hamas is much more likely to fire Abbas..permanently, if you know what I mean.

Abbas' authority at home is almost non-existant, which is why he spends most of his time shilling for the Palestinians overseas. He comands a few Fatah loyalists and his private bodyguard, Force 17, but even the al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a branch of Fatah, hold him in contempt and refuse to follow his orders.

The Palestinian Authority as such barely functions- either in Gaza or the West Bank. A few departments like health or education keep going after a fashion, fueled by `humanitarian' aid, but their budgets are almost exhausted....not because the money J O S H U A P U N D I T:isn't there but because it's being diverted elsewhere.

The new interior minister Said Siyam has been devoting his full attention to consolidating Hamas loyalists in the key positions grabbed from the PA’s Fatah-dominated security, intelligence and civil services, and Abbas has not been able to stop him.

The appointment of Jamal Semhadana was a major coup in this direction, as it virtually insured Hamas control of Gaza.

Semhadana's clan is long established there, a former Arafat `partner' and runs a Middle East smuggling network that runs contraband drugs, prostitutes and arms from Egypt and elsewhere throughout the region...even, reportedly,arms and explosives to the Sunni insurgent and al Qaeda in Iraq.

The Palestinian Authority’s security forces supposedly contain around 60,000 men.
But the organization of these men, except for elites like Force 17 is pretty weak
since the paychecks stopped coming in on a regular basis. Most of them are not destitute, since they've always had other sources of revenue bodyguarding for various clans and crime factions, or even working for themselves...but there's no particular reason for them to be loyal to Fatah at this point.

Think of what happens when the Capo of a crime syndicate cannot pay or protect its `soldiers' anymore, and you'll have a good idea of where Fatah stands with these men.

Semhadana's job is to overhaul and reorganize these forces, blend in recruits from the various Palestinian terrorist factions and his own PRC, and hand out some Hamas cash and put them on the Hamas payroll and under Hamas control.

Osama speaks..again!!

Al Qaeda's own wackmeister Osama bin-Laden went public again in a tape aired on (where else?) jihad TV, AKA Al Jazeera.

This time,the Big Enchilada focused on urging Muslims to prepare for a long war against any Westerners fighting the Muslim genocide in Darfur.

He also weighed in on the West's shunning of the Hamas Palestinian government, saying it showed that it was waging a "Crusader-Zionist war" on Muslims.

If only.

Following are translated excerpts (and a few comments from me) from the audio tape broadcast, courtesy of al-Reuters:

"Their (the West's) rejection of Hamas affirms that it is a Crusader-Zionist war against Muslims. Having said that, we reaffirm what Sheikh Ayman al-Zawahri said warning that there is a taboo against joining infidel assemblies (parliaments)."

"The war is a responsibility shared between the people and the governments. The war goes on and the people are renewing their allegiance to its rulers and masters. They send their sons to armies to fight us and they continue their financial and moral support while our countries are burned and our houses are bombed and our people are killed and no one cares for us. What your ally, Israel, did by invading and demolishing the Jericho prison with complicity from the United States and Britain is example enough about the flagrant violations against our nation and brothers."

(yes, yes, I's all about the Jooos. Zawahiri's dictum, BTW, comes directly from the Qu'ran. Here's two out of many available samples:

'So choose not friends from them till they forsake their beliefs in the way of Allah; ...and choose no friend nor helper from among them'- 4:89

`O ye who believe! Choose not My enemy and your enemy for allies. Do ye give them friendship when they disbelieve in that truth which hath come unto you, driving out the messenger and you because ye believe in Allah, your Lord ? If ye have come forth to strive in My way and seeking My good pleasure, (show them not friendship). Do ye show friendship unto them in secret, when I am Best Aware of what ye hide and what ye proclaim ? And whosoever doeth it among you, he verily hath strayed from the right way.' -60:1

Oddly enough, the end result of the agreement which put Palestinian terrorists in `prison' in Jericho under Brtish and American monitors in the first place, and the breach of that agreement by the Arabs which led to the Israelis having to take these murderers into Israeli custody is an excellent example of the Muslim regard for agreements with non-believers. Couldn't wish for a bette real world example of why `treaties' and agreements with Muslim `allies' are a futile gesture.)

After "the Ottoman state was divided into tens of countries ... Britain came to separate Sudan from Egypt and returned again to Sudan trying to separate its south so it formed an army from the people of the south and supported it with money, weapons and expertise and directed them to demand secession from Sudan, then the United States adopted this army with moral and material support through its international tools such as the United Nations and applied pressure on the government of Sudan to sign an unjust agreement that allows the south to break away after six years from signing the deal."

(Hmmm...I think OBL is talking about the futile UN attempts to stop the Islamic jihad against the black Christians of the South Sudan. To OBL,of course, dem black folks are just dhimmis and the lawful property of the superior Muslims in the North of the country...particularly when the Arabs have all that oil to sell to people like China.)

"Let (Sudanese President Omar Hassan) al-Bashir and (U.S. President George W. Bush) Bush know that this agreement is not worth the ink in which it was written with and does not oblige us in the least. The United States did not get enough with all of this strife and crimes but went on to stir further strife, the biggest of which was its strife in Sudan; using some differences between some tribesmen, and turned them into a blind war between them that destroys all in preparation to send crusader troops to occupy the region and steal its oil under the guise of preserving security there."

(Yep...any agreement between Muslims and Kuffar aren't worth spit on a hot sidewalk. Says so in the Qu'ran)

"This is a continuous Crusader-Zionist war against Muslims. In this regard, I call on the mujahideen and their supporters in Sudan ... and the (Arabian) Peninsula to prepare all that is necessary to wage a long-term war against the Crusaders in western Sudan not in defence of the Khartoum government, even though our interests may be mutual, as our differences with it are great."

"It is enough that it abandoned the implementation of sharia law and neglected the south and I call on the mujahideen to learn about the land and tribes of the Darfur province and the parts around it. It has been said that a man with knowledge can conquer land while land can conquer the ignorant."

(OBL is a tad upset at the Sudanese government vetting a few parts of sharia law, and haven't quite managed to COMPLETELY enslave/murder the non-Muslims in the South. Such inefficiency!)

"It is worth noting that the land there is nearing a season of rain which hampers movement and blocks dirt roads; this is one of the key reasons that delayed the (Western) occupation for six more months."

"It is scornful to people that your warplanes and tanks are destroying houses over the heads of our folk and children in Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, Chechnya, and Pakistan then you smile at us (Muslims) and say that we are not enemies of Islam but enemies of terrorists and call for peaceful co-existence and dialogue instead of the conflict of cultures. Reality shows that they lie."

(Again, if only.At least OBL is honest about what he calls a `conflict of cultures'. I wish our leaders were as honest.)

"The politicians of the West do not want dialogue other than for the sake of dialogue to gain time. And they do not want a truce unless it is from our side only. You have learned about our response to their opinion polls in their countries through our offer of a truce after they pull out their armies and stop harming us and they rejected all that."

"They insist on continuing their crusader campaigns against our nation and to loot our wealth and enslave us. Do not be fooled by their words or those of the hypocrites and apostates from our kin."

(Interesting, in view of the Qu'ran's official endorsement of looting the wealth and enslaving places like Darfur.)

Osama to al Jazeer recording crew: "Thanks very much guys, and I hoped I passed the audition!"

Seriously, I'm interested if OBL's emphasis on Sudan and virtual silence onIraq means that al Qaeda has given it up as a lost battle.

Stay tuned..

Saturday, April 22, 2006

For Bookworm

CALLER: Rush, it's great to have you. Thank you for the work you're doing. You often say on your show that it takes six weeks to convert someone. Boy, I hate to correct you. I've got a family member who was forced to listen to your show for three days, and it corrected years and years of brainwashing and lies from the marching band media. He's a great Rush listener now, he spreads the word. He was forced to use a friend's car when his broke down and the radio station was set on KSFO and the knob was broken off so it couldn't be changed. It took three days to convert him, Rush, and I thank you. In fact, can I give you the telephone number for my mom so you could talk to her for a couple hours? Maybe get her on board, too?

RUSH: Well, let me tell you something. It only took this guy three days?

CALLER: Three days, Rush.

RUSH: Three days. Why was he afraid to listen prior to the time he had no choice?

CALLER: Well, because he believed everything that he was being told, you know, he was just --

RUSH: The reason I ask is because we had a great blog post yesterday from some woman identifying herself as Bookworm. She said the reason liberals don't listen to me is because they are scared to death I will change their minds. They think I have mystical Svengali-like powers, and they're scared to death that I will upset their worldview. So they don't want to take the chance of listening.

CALLER: I think that is very true, and that's why I wanted you to talk to my mom, if you could just get a few minutes with her even, she's from the same generation you're from, and, you know, God bless her, she took her time to teach me how to think and not what to think, and now she can't understand why I disagree with most of what she believes in.

RUSH: Yeah.

CALLER: And one other quick thing, Rush, going back to the first hour. Whenever the left or a statist accuses a Republican of doing something, a malfeasance, it's typically because the left has been doing that, they are currently doing it, or they plan on doing it in the near future. And it's some sort of preemptive attack, I believe.

RUSH: Yeah, it's called projection. You can always gauge what the left is doing by just listening to what they accuse us of doing. By the way, I saw this picture of the teachers protest in Chicago. And from the photos I've seen, it didn't seem like there was a lot of racial diversity in this group. I don't know if the media will point that out, but folks, this is how you create a permanent underclass. And you think, "Rush, you're talking about public school teachers." Yeah, we're talking about public school teachers, Illinois, permanent underclass. It's infuriating to Snerdley. It is to me, too, but it makes me more sad than anything else. Look at the worldview of these people. It's so narrow. In order to stay alive they've gotta go protest at the State Capitol building. I mean, that's pathetic.

please helps me write more gooder!

Friday, April 21, 2006

Hamas and Abbas clash over new `security forces' and government appointments

Yesterday, the Hamas government announced the formation of yet another Palestinian `security' force - this one made up of terrorists from the Popular Resistance Committees, al-Aksa, and other wonderful people.

New Palestinian Interior Minister Said Siyam announced the formation of the gruop yesterday, and appointed terorist leader Jamal Abu Samhadana to lead it.

Samhadana was the founder of the so-called `Popular Resistance committee'...and one of the engineers of the murder of those three American security contractors in the Gaza Strip three years ago, as well as being implicated in numerous attacks that claimed Israeli lives. He and the PRC have also been a major source of the Qassam missile attacks out of Gaza into Israel. He's number two on the list of Israel's wanted terrorist fugitives.

Hamas forming an official `security force' out of these particular hardliners and naming someone like Samhadana as `general in charge' is tantamout to a declaration of war by Hamas on Israel. As I said here, Hamas is paying for its aid money from Iran and elsewhere by ramping up the War Against the Jews.

Chairman Abbas immediately understood that not only was it an escalation against Israel but, more importantly to him, a bid to oust Abbas from any control over the Palestinian `security' apparatus. He quickly used his power under Palestinian Law to block formation of the new force and Samhadana's appointment to command.

Needless to say, Hamas was not pleased.

A spokesman for the Hamas-led government said today that Interior Minister Siyam will go ahead with plans to form the new security force, despite Abbas' veto.

"The decision of the Interior Minister conformed with the law … which gives the minister the authority to take the necessary decisions to guarantee security," Hamas spokesman Ghazi Hamad said. "The aim of the decision was to support and strengthen the efforts of the police.."

Sure it was.

For their part,the Israelis quite understand what this means.

"We have old scores to settle with this murderer," Israeli Cabinet minister Zeev Boim told Israel Radio. "He has no immunity and we will have to settle this score sooner or later."

"The nomination of this killer to a security post is the final word in cynicism and demonstrates again the new terrorist nature of the Palestinian Authority since Hamas took control," he said.

"Sooner or later we will get our hands on him," added Mr Boim, a former deputy defence minister.

Israeli lawmaker and former intelligence chief Danny Yatom, a member of the Labour party also weighed in.

"Nobody who deals with terror can have immunity by any means, even if he holds a ministerial portfolio in the Hamas government."

The Israelis have even been thinking interms of reoccupying Gaza, in view of the increasing rocket attacks, the defence of homicide bombings as `legitimate resistance' and the intransience of the Hamas government.

"If the price we have to pay becomes unreasonable as a result of increased attacks, then we shall have to take all steps, including occupying the Gaza Strip," Maj. Gen. Yoav Galant, head of Israel's southern command, told the Israeli newspaper Maariv.

"It could be anything from a partial occupation of the Gaza Strip to a full occupation," he told Maariv, adding that the plans have been approved by senior officials, including Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz.

Now, I think that reoccupying Gaza is unlikely, from a cost benfit and a political standpoint. But wouldn't it be a hoot, after the Israeli government was in such a hurry to force Jews out of their homes in Gaza as a `peace' move?

Perhaps a better move might be a strong miitary response against the Hamas government and its hired killers...and an Israeli cleanup of at least Judea and Samaria, moving the Palestinians over to Gaza proper.

As I've said, the results of the last election show thatthe Israelis have at last abandoned the quaint idea of peace with the so-called Palestinians. The next fable to go will be the idea that they can somehow wall themselves off from the den of rattlers living next door.

al-Jaafari ally picked as new Iraqi PM candidate

The new Iraqi candidate for Prime Minister is Jawad al-Maliki , replacing al-Jaafari in a bid to clear the way for the long-delayed new Iraqi government.

Al-Maliki is a close ally of outgoing Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari, whose nomination sparked sharp opposition from Sunni Arab and Kurdish leaders and caused a months long deadlock .

Leaders of the Shiite alliance agreed on al-Maliki's nomination in a meeting Friday evening, said Jalal Eddin al-Sagheer, a member of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, the largest party in the alliance.

If Sunni Arab and Kurdish parties accept al-Maliki, it could be a breakthrough in the standoff that has prevented the forming of a national unity government.

Al-Maliki is a top figure in al-Jaafari's Dawa party and has often been al-Jaafari's spokesman. he's something of an unknown...he fled Iraq in the 1980s, settling in Syria and working in Dawa's political office. He returned to Iraq after Saddam fell in 2003.

Al-Maliki was a top official in the commission in charge of purging members of Saddam's Baath Party from the military and government. Sunnis, who made up the majority of the Baath Party, considered the commission a means of squeezing them out of power and influence in Iraq.

In spite of that, the buzz is that the Sunnis and Kurds appear willing to take al-Maliki, after fiercely opposing a second term for al-Jaafari, who agreed to bow out Thursday.

The power behind the scenes, Iraq's most powerful Shiite cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani is reputed to have pulled the plug on Jaafari, saying that he should go, according to my sources.

Al-Jaafari had held out for weeks against increasing pressure on him to step aside.

Sunni and Kurdish parties refused to join any government headed by al-Jaafari.

This could signal a breakthough in forming a new Iraqi government...something the Bush administration hopes will curb Iraq's slide toward sectarian breakup and chaosy and enable the U.S. to begin bringing home most of its 133,000 troops.

Stay tuned...

Watcher's Council results for this week

Well, the Council has spoken.

The winners for Council posts was Arrogant district refuses to protect white students:Rhymes With Right

In second place was Hate Central:The Sundries Shack

Non-council winner was Wolfgang Bruno: Do We Need Religion? Part 1 with The Adventures of Chester: Iran Extravaganza Post in second place.

Complete results can be seen here

Congratulations to the winners!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Russia says `nyet' to US on Iran nukes construction

The main building of Iran's Bushehr nuclear plant

No surprise, but the Russians unequivically rejected a US call for Russia to end its construction of the Bushehr nuclear power plant for Iran at the Moscow tals now in progress.

"The adoption of a commitment on ending cooperation with this or that state in some sphere lies exclusively in the competence of the UN Security Council," Foreign Ministry spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said in a statement. "Up to now, the Security Council has taken no decision on ending cooperation with Iran in nuclear energy."

Nor will they, if Russia and China have anything to say about it, I would imagine.

Kamynin said that every country "has the right to decide with whom and how it should cooperate."

US Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns told reporters in Moscow on Wednesday that the United States has called on countries to end all nuclear cooperation with Iran, including work on the Bushehr plant. He also said that countries should stop all arms exports to Iran.

I wouldn't count on it if I were you, Mr. Undersecretary.

UN calls for disbanding of Hezbollah - I'm sure Sheik Nasrullah is quaking in his boots

A new UN report calls for disbanding of the terrorist group Hezbollah and for setting clear borders between Lebanon and Syria.

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said in the report, compiled by envoy Terje Roed-Larsen, that it was now `time for Syria to hold a dialogue with Lebanon over exchanging embassies and marking the border between the two countries.'

This report was prepared as a follow-up to Security Council Resolution 1559, which called for Syrian forces to leave Lebanon and for all the militias to be disbanded.

Neither has happened yet.

Interestingly enough, Annan addresses the main raison d'etre for Hezbollah's aggression towards Israel..the supposed dispute over the Shaaba Farms area on the Golan Heights, which Hezbollah says is Lebanese land occupied by Israel. This has been Hezbollah's justification for continuing attacks on Israel since the IDF withdrew from southern Lebanon in 2000.

The UN report accepts the Israeli claim that the Shaba Farms were taken from Syria and are therefore an Israeli-Syrian issue, not an Israeli-Lebanese one...which, considering the fact that Israel consulted with the UN on this matter and received the UN's offical opinion at the time of the pulloutfrom South Lebanon over twenty years ago is long overdue. "Its current status as Israeli-occupied Syrian territory, does, however, remain valid unless and until the governments of Lebanon and Syria take steps under international law to alter that status," Annan said in the report, first obtained by the Reuters news agency.

The report stresses the necessity for Syria and Lebanon to demarcate their border and to establish normal diplomatic relations. It also discusses the extensive Syrian involvement in Lebanese politics. Roed-Larsen wrote that 11 members of the Lebanese parliament told him Syria had threatened them to get them to vote for pro-Syrian president Emil Lahoud for a third term.

The Bush Administration does not see Lahoud as a legitimate leader but as a Syrian puppet and is channeling its relations with Beirut through Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora, who visited the White House on Tuesday. President George W. Bush told Siniora then that the US "supports a free and independent and sovereign Lebanon."

The Syria/Lebanon issue, sparked by the Syrian murder of Lebanese leader Rafik Hariri has been on the back burner since the Iran nukes crisis heated up.

Jaafari to step down?

There may be a break in the Iraq dealock.

Iraq's Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari, whose nomination for a second term has held up forming a new government, said today that the Shiite Alliance should decide whether he should resign to end the deadlock. The Iraqi Sunnis, Kurds, and some Shia have declared him an unacceptable candidate for PM, largely because of his ties with Iran.

Jaafari reportedly revised his position hours before political leaders were scheduled to meet in parliament to try to end the impasse blocking the formation of an Iraqi government.

Obviously something new crept into the mix for Iran's Man in Baghdad to offer to step aside.

An official from the Alliance, which nominated Jaafari in an internal vote in February, read out a statement quoting Jaafari as saying his fate now rests with those who picked him.

"You have chosen me and I return back this choice to you to decide what you see appropriate," Jawad al-Maliki, an official from Jaafari's Dawa party, quoted him as saying.

"You'll find me totally prepared to accept your decision for the sake of the unity of the Alliance."

By leaving the decision to the Alliance, Jaafari passes the final say to Alliance leader Abdul Aziz al-Hakim, another Iran proxy.

Hakim, a leader of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, has kept a low profile as opposition to Jaafari grew, including from within the Alliance.

Could be that the Mullahs in Iran find that a change suits their needs. Or it might be that the US and Iran came to a clandestine agreement that allows the formation of a government Iran can live with, and one that allows a US pullout.

Or it could be an internal coup that has nothing to do with any of this.

Stay tuned...

Happy Birthday, Your Majesty

Queen Elizabeth II turns 80 today.

Elizabeth Alexandra Mary was born on April 21, 1926, and has been on the throne for 54 years since her father, King George VI, died in 1952. She is nine years away from breaking Victoria's record as Britain's longest-serving monarch.

Longevity is a well known trait among the female members of the royal family. The Queen's mother was 101 when she died in 2002 and her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria lived to age 81.

The Queen is on reported as saying that she has no intention of ever abdicating, leaving her son Charles, who's 57 facing the prospect of being what the Brits refer to as 'the pensioner king'.

The official version is that the Queen feels that at her Coronation vow, she promised to serve her country fro life whether her life was long or short.

I think there's a underlying reason...that the Queen and Prince Chuckie are known to have a few disagreements on topics like Islam,terrorism and Muslim immigration in Britain.

Only a few months ago, al Qaeda named the Queen `One of the severest enemies of Islam'.

As I speculated then, in view of Prince Chuckie's symphathetic views on Islam - to the point where several knowledgeable observers think he may even have secretly converted - the Queen may have some ambivalance about retiring just now.

Long life, Your Majesty...many more.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

This week's Watcher's Council nominations:

As usual, some good stuff this week.

You can find links to everything that was nominated here

Here’s what the Council members nominated this week:

Dr. Sanity: STRATEGIES FOR DEALING WITH DENIAL - Part I: The Many Faces of Denial-Dr. Sanity examines comments on one of the factors she feels has impeded our ability to come to terms with the attacks on 9/11/2001: denial. In this first installment she gives examples of the many forms that denial can take.

The Glittering Eye :The Sunday lesson -Dave takes note of some references to the Bible in the news lately.

The Strata-Sphere : Marc Grossman, Man Of Mystery - AJ provides detailed background on Marc Grossman, who has emerged as a factor in the ongoing Wilson/Plame/Libby soap opera.

Done With Mirrors - examines a quickie definition of patriotism.

Rhymes With Right: Arrogant District Refuses To Protect White Students- Greg looks at an incident that happened recently in a Peoria school district. Some people think that `minorities cannot be guilty of racism because of the `power' issue. Intruth, racism can and does come in all colors.

New World Man - almost free: Quadruple aid to Hamas-Matt suggests we dramatically increase aid to the Palestinian government, as a way of forestalling Russia, China, and Iran.

I disagree.

Unfortunately, he perhaps hasn't considered that US aid money to Hamas will not the Great Satan any friends in the region anymore than the billions we gave Arafat did, or cut off Islamist well as making a mockery of the War aginst Jihad.

I also have a problem with American dollars financing the murder of innocent people simply because they happen to be Jews. and as I mention in my nominated post for the week, any `humanitarian' aid to the Palestinians frees up money that Hamas doesn't have to use to take care of their people and can use in the War Against the Jews. And us.

The Sundries Shack: Hate Central- Jimmie Bise examines the “Angry Left”.

Gates of Vienna: The Turncoat Generals: Et tu, Brutus?- Dymphna reams the retired generals piling on SoD Rumsfeld a new one.

J O S H U A P U N D I T: Are the Palestinians really broke? Hardly.- my own piece, which shows that the Palestinians are far from being `destitute' as they claim...and reveals the link between the power struggle over the money between Abbas and Hamas and this week's homicide bombing in Israel.

The Education Wonks: The High Costs Of Subsidizing The Immigrant Nation -self explanatory...and in reality, I think their estimate is on the low side.

ShrinkWrapped: "Hope" is not a Policy-ShrinkWrapped considers the options in dealing with Iran with a piece comparing it to dealing with Saddam.

Right Wing Nut House - ANTI-AMERICAN? OR ANTI-BUSH?- In which Rick examines the battle for the soul of the Democratic party.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Homicide bombing pays dividends..Hamas walks away with $200 million in aid pledges

Hamas Kingpin Khalid Meshaal and Russian Foreign Minister Serge Lavrov, Moscow

Terrorism is gooood business,lemme tell you.

Well, it looks like Hamas may be on the verge of solving it's so-called `financial problems' thanks to Iran and US `allies in the War On Terror' Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Russia.

PA Foreign Minister Mahmoud Zahar took a meeting with Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal and then announced that the Saudis had agreed to give $92 million in aid to the Hamas government. This little piece of news came after Russia said it would transfer $10 million, Iran $50 million, and Qatar an additional $50 million for a total of over $200 million.

Can we recall the Bush Doctrine for a minute? "You're either with the terrorists or with us."

Does it work differently if those terorists just target Jews? For now?

Qatar is a particular slapdown for the Bush Admnistration, since the President had just asked our supposed `ally' for an explanation of the first pledge of $50 million to Hamas! How do you say, `mind your own business when it comes to how we deal with the Jews, Bush' in Arabic? Would loved to have been a fly on the wall for that one.

It's no coincidence that all of these offers of aid came directly after yesterday's homicide bombing.

Hamas has made a decision to meet Iran's terms for aid..and the other offers followed, the Russians to show solidarity with their ally Iran and increase their influence with the Islamist bloc and the Saudis and Qataris to balance them out for influence. Hamas can play both the Sunni autocracies and the Islamist bloc against each other for awhile.

As I reported earlier, this links up with the struggle between Abbas and Hamas for control of the Palestine Investment Fund. Hamas now has leverage to wait Abbas out or eliminate him from the picture altogether.

This also is bad news for Bush's idea of a united front against terrorism, the Road Map and the `Quartet' and the bloc of Sunni autocrats he was attempting to cobble together with the UAE, the Saudis, Jordan, Qatar, Bahrein and Oman. The president may finally realize that Islam and Jew hatred (as a prelude to hatred of all infidels, including Americans) trumps almost everything else in the region.

With all this, while cutting off any direct US aid to the Palestinian government, the Bush administration intends to contribute about $600 million in the next few years to Palestinian humanitarian projects...freeing upmoney the Palestinian government should be providing to its people for use in the War Against the Jews.


Stalemate in iraq continues; Shiites continue to back Jaafari

Well, the stand-off between the Sunnis and Kurds on the one hand and the Shiite/Iran friendly parties on the other shows no sign of resolving itself.

Shiite Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari's party indicated it was standing firm for him to keep the post of Prime Minister in spite of the Kurds and Sunnis saying flat out that they would never accept him as head of government.

Ali al-Adeeb, a top official in the Dawa party, said the group would not put forward anyone else as the Shiite Muslim nominee for premier unless al-Jaafari decided to step aside.

The alliance of seven Shiite parties has lined up behind Dawa to back al-Jaafari to head the new government. Sunnis and Kurds oppose him..essentially because he's Iran's Man in Baghdad, backed up by the Iran trained and equipped Mehdi Army of Moqata al-Sadr. Neither side has enough votes to force a decision.

The standoff over al-Jaafari forced Iraqi officials to call off a plan for convening parliament Monday.

"Dawa cannot present any candidate unless al-Jaafari decides to step aside," al-Adeeb told The Associated Press. "So far his position has not changed."

Al-Adeeb said he let U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, who has been pushing Iraqi leaders to break the impasse and form a new government know that in no uncertain terms.

It's not looking good for the idea of One Iraq.


Wolfgang Bruno: Do We Need Religion? Part 1

An excellent essay from the pen of Wolfgang Bruno, discussing the role of religion in the struggle between Islam and the West. An excellent read.

Wolfgang Bruno: Do We Need Religion? Part 1

Monday, April 17, 2006

The FDI get's it right again on Iran's nuke program

Well, sources in the Iranian dissident group FDI have been proven correct again.

These are the same folks who outed Iran's clandestine nuke program 2 1/2 years ago. predicted a weapons test to coincide with the Noruz holiday in March and as you read in these pages here, outed Iran's second secret enrichment plant with 155,000 upgraded centrifuges.

They're a little behind, but yesterday, April 16th the NYT confirmed part of the story with `New Worry Rises After Iran Claims Nuclear Steps'. (sorry, no direct link) which detailed the use of the advanced P-2 centrifuges at a `hidden seperate site'.

The Neyshabour plant is scheduled to be up and running by late 2007, and will have three times the capacity of Natanz, with only 60,000 or so centrifuges.

Iran, at most is three years away from nuclear weapons....and given the mullah's fanatic concentration on this goal, it could be much less.

Are the Palestinians really broke? Hardly.

How broke are the Palestinians?

Not very. Certainly not as much as they'd like you to believe.

Today's big stories were the homicide bombing in Tel Aviv and two $50 million dollar pledges of aid to Hamas, one from Iran and one from US `ally in the war on terror' Qatar to the supposedly destitute Palestinians. Here's how they link up.

The Palestinian Authority is not `broke', no matter what sob stories you read in the MSM press. The reality, as always with these folks is very different from the public perception.

The total shortfall for the Palestinian budget is around $1.5 billion a year, including inflated government salaries for one in three Pal workers.You may remember that the Saudis made Hamas do an audit prior to making an aid pledge and discovered almost 38,000 non-existant people on the payroll...all drawing salaries paid for by the UN, EU and the US. That money `mysteriously' disappeared...a PLO variation on the old Mafia `no show jobs' racket.

Using this and other scams to skim off millions in stolen aid, Yasir Arafat established The Palestine Investment fund– PIF – which was set up to conceal and invest the funds Arafat diverted over the years from international donors that was supposed to go to `aid' the Palestinian people. This little treasure trove is now in the hands of Mahmoud Abbas.

It's no small amount, either. The capital is estimated at $1.2-1.4 billion and its monthly yield counted in tens of millions. And that's just the one fund we know about. Keep in mind that the Pals still receive millions in `humanitarian ' aid that frees up money the Hamas government would ordinarily have to spend on the needs of its people.

However, Abbas reportedly won't hand over a single shekel, let alone control over the hedge fund until Hamas recognizes – not Israel, but the Palestinian Liberation Organization as the paramount authority over the Palestinians. Abbas says that these ill-gotten gains belong to the PLO and he won't release funds to an organization that refuses to recognize its authority.

So it's about the Power struggle between Fatah and Hamas as well as about the cold, hard cash.

The recent pledge of $50 million from Iran, as I discussed here came with a price's bombing was the start of Hamas earning their money the way the Pals have always earned it - by killing Jews.

Khalid Meshaal, the Hamas kingpin was just in Teheran, where the Mullahs told him that if he wanted money, he'd have to earn it by ramping up the War Against the Jews. Today's bombing was the start of that.Islamic Jihad is owned by Iran, and Hamas has essentially been winking and letting them take the lead in terror attacks. So, Hamas had a choice to make. Either dance to the mullah's tune as a unified command with Islamic Jihad and Hezbollah if they want to get paid, or cut a deal and let Fatah and Abbas in on the action.

Based on today's events, it looks like Hamas made its choice.

And the people who call themselves Palestinians, as usual, end up as the dupes and cannon fodder.