Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Le Jihad Francais redux

During last year's Muslim riots in France, I predicted that, based on the French government's reaction, this would be only the start.

This week, the media reports on violence flaring again in the Paris arrondisements.

`Youths' torched a dozen cars and hurled stones at police in a second night of violence in the Muslim enclaves in the Paris suburbs in Montfermeil and Clichy-sous-Bois, the center of last year's jihad festivities.

Six French policemen have been injured so far today.

Monday night was the real party, when bands of `youths' hurled gasoline bombs at public buildings, caused the mayor of Montfermeil to flee for his personal safety and roted in the the streets with baseball bats. Nine officers were hurt that night and the French cops used rubber bullets on the crowd. One police car was firebombed, and the police inside barely had time to get out.

Of course, the media reports take great care not to directly mention the dreaded`M' word in connection with the rioters, merely referring to them as `youths'...instead, they simply mention where the rioting is taking place, in heavily Muslim areas of Paris, and hope no one notices.

This appears to be a test run for violence planned later in the year...stay tuned...

US signifies it will enter direct talks with Iran

Why am I not surprised....Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice announced today that the United States is ready to join direct talks with Iran - if Iran first suspends its uranium-enrichment activities.

Saying the decision "gives the negotiation track new energy," Rice used this to emphasize President Bush's determination "to do everything we can to find a diplomatic solution to the nuclear problem."

The announcement came right before Rice's trip to Europe to work out details of an international approach to Iran.

As outlined by Rice, the new plan calls for the US to join the so-called EU-3 - the European Union countries Britain, France, and Germany - in talks with Iran if Tehran `verifiably' suspends uranium enrichment.

Of course, Iran has already said that suspension of enrichment is off the table. So this means that Iran candemend a high price for compliance...and continue to enrich uranium, work on its missle and nuclear arsenal and build up its military on the sly anyway, just as it has done for the past decade.

My interpetation? Both Bush and the EU are searching for a face saving way of kicking this down the road to a future time. And Iran is looking to buy some more time.

In any event, agreements of convenience between Muslims and non-believers have no great significance for Muslims when it comes to establishing the New Caliphate, Dar Islam. The model is Mohammed's Treaty of Hubidiya, which lasted just long enough for Mohammed to garner the strength to massacre his `peace partners'. Or to put it another way, as the Hadith quotes Mohammed "War is deception."

Will Bush and the West fall for this? Stay tuned.

Watcher's Council nominations, 5/31/06

Every week, the Watcher's Council 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 is here.

In which Doctor Pat tries her hand at parody songwriting on the Democratic party's lack of any positive ideas.

2. J O S H U A P U N D I T: The Pope at Auschwitz
Pope Benedict XVI visited the site of the Auschwitz death camp Sunday. The Pontiff's remarks at the site of Auschwitz dealt not only with the past, but with the present.And he had some things to say which were mostly misunderstood by the Media Drive By squad...this is an important moment in the Battle for Europe.

3.Done With Mirrors: Haditha Incident- Callimachus writes on the alleged civilian killings at Haditha. I pretty much agree with his take on this.

4. The Education Wonks: Wonkitorial: Lessons To Be Learned From Private Schools EdWonk examines private schools in St. Louis and examines the possible application and implications for the public school system. Here's my comment, Ed...V O U C H E R S and school choice.

5. The Strata-Sphere: Zarqawi’s Last Stand?AJ talks about Zarqawi becoming desperate in Iraq and muses about things finally coming to a head inIraq with al Qaeda. Nice thought and we can always hope, but as readers to this site know, al Qaeda is primarily concentrating on Jordan and the Palestinian Authority and ramping things up with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt...and the war against the US in Iraq has mainly been taken up by Iran, through the Iran funded and trained Shia Militias.

6. Who do you trust with your Constitution? : New World Man Matt has an interesting take on the Constitutional view of judicial activism vs. the legislative branch.

7. Gates of Vienna: Interview With Starling David Hunter, PhD Dymphna has an interesting interview with a professor with the American University in Dubai, in the UAE, who talks about teaching Arab youth western style critical thinking and economics..

8. ShrinkWrapped: Live Flying ReindeerIn what appears to be a continuing series on commencement addresses, ShrinkWrapped analyzes NYT publisher Pinch Sulzberger's anti-US screed at SUNY. Makes you wonder what kind of reality these people live in!

9. Rhymes With Right: Blog about school, get expelledGreg examines a teen faced with expulsion for exercising freedom of speech off campus.

10.Right Wing Nut House : WHO DO YOU BELIEVE ON GLOBAL WARMING? Rick looks at both sides of this issue.

11. The Glittering Eye: You’ve gotta know the territory
Dave examines the decline of the Knight-ridder newspaper chain.

12. The Sundries Shack: On Memeorial Day, 2006Jimmie Bise looks at memeorial Day and provides a list of heroes in Iraq and Afghanistan who's exploits have all but been ignored by the Main Stream Media. These people don't want American heroes, Jimmie...not in this or any other war. because it makes a lot of the folks in the media look like the anti-American, self loathing cowards they are. Good job, Jimmie.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Ahmadinejad interview

The German Magazine Der Spiegal recently published a very revealing interview with Iran's President Ahmadinejad. You can read the entire transcript here.

I'll just hit the highlights for you...

SPIEGEL: There was great indignation in Germany when it became known that you might be coming to the soccer world championship. Did that surprise you?

Ahmadinejad: No, that's not important. I didn't even understand how that came about. It also had no meaning for me. I don't know what all the excitement is about.

SPIEGEL: It concerned your remarks about the Holocaust. It was inevitable that the Iranian president's denial of the systematic murder of the Jews by the Germans would trigger outrage.

Ahmadinejad: I don't exactly understand the connection.......

Ahmadinejad: I know that DER SPIEGEL is a respected magazine. But I don't know whether it is possible for you to publish the truth about the Holocaust. Are you permitted to write everything about it?

SPIEGEL: Of course we are entitled to write about the findings of the past 60 years' historical research. In our view there is no doubt that the Germans -- unfortunately -- bear the guilt for the murder of 6 million Jews.

Ahmadinejad: Well, then we have stirred up a very concrete discussion. We are posing two very clear questions. The first is: Did the Holocaust actually take place? You answer this question in the affirmative. So, the second question is: Whose fault was it? The answer to that has to be found in Europe and not in Palestine. It is perfectly clear: If the Holocaust took place in Europe, one also has to find the answer to it in Europe.

On the other hand, if the Holocaust didn't take place, why then did this regime of occupation ...

SPIEGEL: ... You mean the state of Israel...

Ahmadinejad: ... come about? Why do the European countries commit themselves to defending this regime? Permit me to make one more point. We are of the opinion that, if an historical occurrence conforms to the truth, this truth will be revealed all the more clearly if there is more research into it and more discussion about it.

SPIEGEL: That has long since happened in Germany.

Ahmadinejad: We don't want to confirm or deny the Holocaust. We oppose every type of crime against any people. But we want to know whether this crime actually took place or not. If it did, then those who bear the responsibility for it have to be punished, and not the Palestinians. Why isn't research into a deed that occurred 60 years ago permitted? After all, other historical occurrences, some of which lie several thousand years in the past, are open to research, and even the governments support this.

SPIEGEL: Mr. President, with all due respect, the Holocaust occurred, there were concentration camps, there are dossiers on the extermination of the Jews, there has been a great deal of research, and there is neither the slightest doubt about the Holocaust nor about the fact - we greatly regret this - that the Germans are responsible for it. If we may now add one remark: the fate of the Palestinians is an entirely different issue, and this brings us into the present.

Ahmadinejad: No, no, the roots of the Palestinian conflict must be sought in history. The Holocaust and Palestine are directly connected with one another. And if the Holocaust actually occurred, then you should permit impartial groups from the whole world to research this. Why do you restrict the research to a certain group? Of course, I don't mean you, but rather the European governments.

SPIEGEL: Are you still saying that the Holocaust is just "a myth?"

Ahmadinejad: I will only accept something as truth if I am actually convinced of it.

(Holocaust? What Holocaust, infidel?)

SPIEGEL: We can only speak for ourselves. DER SPIEGEL is nobody's hostage; SPIEGEL does not deal only with Germany's past and the Germans' crimes. We're not Israel's uncritical ally in the Palestian conflict. But we want to make one thing very clear: We are critical, we are independent, but we won't simply stand by without protest when the existential right of the state of Israel, where many Holocaust survivors live, is being questioned.

(Good dhimmi!)

Ahmadinejad: Precisely, that is our point. Why should you feel obliged to the Zionists? If there really had been a Holocaust, Israel ought to be located in Europe, not in Palestine.

SPIEGEL: Do you want to resettle a whole people 60 years after the end of the war?

Ahmadinejad: Five million Palestinians have not had a home for 60 years. It is amazing really: You have been paying reparations for the Holocaust for 60 years and will have to keep paying up for another 100 years. Why then is the fate of the Palestinians no issue here?

SPIEGEL: The Europeans support the Palestinians in many ways. After all, we also have an historic responsibility to help bring peace to this region finally. But don't you share that responsibility?

Ahmadinejad: Yes, but aggression, occupation and a repetition of the Holocaust won't bring peace. What we want is a sustainable peace. This means that we have to tackle the root of the problem. I am pleased to note that you are honest people and admit that you are obliged to support the Zionists.

SPIEGEL: That's not what we said, Mr. President.

Ahmadinejad: You said Israelis. {....}

(Gee, nothing about all those millions of Euros the Palestinians have received, right Mr. President?)

SPIEGEL: The key question is: Do you want nuclear weapons for your country?

Ahmadinejad: Allow me to encourage a discussion on the following question: How long do you think the world can be governed by the rhetoric of a handful of Western powers? Whenever they hold something against someone, they start spreading propaganda and lies, defamation and blackmail. How much longer can that go on?

(uh, I think that was a `ja' Herr Journalist)

SPIEGEL: The Palestinians have long gone a step further than you and recognize Israel as a fact, while you still wish to erase it from the map. The Palestinians are ready to accept a two-state solution while you deny Israel its right to existence.

Ahmadinejad: You're wrong. You saw that the Palestinian people elected Hamas in free elections. We argue that neither you nor we should claim to speak for the Palestian people. The Palestinians themselves should say what they want. In Europe it is customary to call a referendum on any issue. We should also give the Palestinians the opportunity to express their opinion.

SPIEGEL: The Palestinians have the right to their own state, but in our view the Israelis naturally have the same right.

Ahmadinejad: Where did the Israelis come from? {...}

(Congratulations to Ahmadinejad for being honest about his and the Palestinian's positon....unlike the Europeans that still cling to the idea of the Roadmap and a peaceful settlement)
SPIEGEL: Is your letter to the president also a gesture toward the Americans that you wish to enter into direct negotiations?

Ahmadinejad: We clearly stated our position in this letter on how we view the problems in the world. Some powers have befouled the political atmosphere in the world because they consider lies and fraud to be legitimate. In our view that is very bad. We believe that all people deserve respect. Relationships have to be regulated on the basis of justice. When justice reigns, peace reigns. Unjust conditions aren't sustainable, even if Ahmadinejad does not criticize them.

SPIEGEL: This letter to the American president includes a passage about Sept. 11, 2001. The quote: "How could such an operation be planned and implemented without the coordination with secret and security services or without the far-reaching infiltration of these services?" Your statements always include so many innuendos. What is that supposed to mean? Did the CIA help Mohammed Atta and the other 18 terrorists conduct their attacks?

Ahmadinejad: No, that's not what I meant. We think that they should just say who is to blame. They should not use Sept. 11 as an excuse to launch a military attack against the Middle East. They should take those who are responsible for the attacks to court. We're not opposed to that; we condemned the attacks. We condemn any attack against innocent people. {....)

(Unless it's against the evil Joooos, right?)
SPIEGEL: What will happen now in the conflict between the West and Iran?

Ahmadinejad: We understand the Americans' logic. They suffered damage as a result of the victory of the Islamic Revolution. But we're puzzled why some European countries are opposed to us. I sent out a message on the nuclear issue, asking why the Europeans were translating the Americans' words for us. After all, they know that our actions are aimed toward peace. By siding with Iran, the Europeans would serve their own and our interests. But they will suffer only damage if they oppose us. For our people is strong and determined. The Europeans risk losing their position in the Middle East entirely, and they are ruining their reputation in other parts of the world. The others will think that the Europeans aren't capable of solving problems.

SPIEGEL: Mr. President, we thank you for this interview.

Once have to give Ahmadinejad credit for stating his intentions up front. Will we respond to the challenge at hand?

The Pope at Auschwitz

"To speak in this place of horror, in this place where unprecedented mass crimes were committed against G-d and man, is almost impossible — and it is particularly difficult and troubling for a Christian, for a pope from Germany."

"In a place like this, words fail; in the end, there can be only a dread silence, a silence which itself is a heartfelt cry to G-d: Why, Lord, did you remain silent? How could you tolerate all this?"

-Pope Benedict XVI at Auschwitz, Sunday, May 29, 2006.

His Holiness visited Auschwitz Sunday....walking like an ordinary penitant seeking absolution through the gate with its mocking inscription `Arbeit Macht Frei' (`labor liberates'). I don't use that language lightly.The present Pope lived the nightmare firsthand. He was an unwilling member of the Hitler Youth and was drafted into the German army towards the end of WWII. And for him to come to Auschwitz in this way and confront those old demons head on took extraordinary courage.

Auschwitz itself is deceptive in its placid facade. It's a small town like many others in that part of Poland. The camp itself, like most of the Nazi death camps, is just outside of town, but close enough to town so that no inhabitant could be unaware of what occurred there. Among other things, it's close enough for the smell of burning flesh to have been easily discernable to the townspeople down wind.

The memorial has inscriptions in the 22 languages of the dead. Behind the memorial, there's a small forest of black birches and poplars. To one side are the remains of bombed brick walls, a watchtower and a dark pool with ashes in it. It is indeed a place where words fail...but also a place where birds sing and children play.

But the Pope, after walking through the gates, a cold wind with rain drizzling down on him.

The destruction of the people of Israel is essentially the will to destroy G-d, he said: "By eradicating this people, those purveyors of violence wanted, deep down, to kill the G-d who had called upon Abraham, who had spoken on Mount Sinai and established the still valid principles of humanity there....If this people, by its very existence, was a witness to the G-d who spoke to humanity and took us to himself, then that G-d finally had to die and power had to belong to man alone — to those men, who thought that by force they had made themselves masters of the world."

And he continued: "Ultimately, the destruction of Israel was intended as an unearthing of the foundation upon which Christian faith rests, and as its replacement by a new, artificial faith in the rule of man, the rule of the strong."

Some people have criticized the Pope for glossing over the role of the Church in creating the institutionalized anti-Semitism that led to the Holocaust. It's not just a coincidence that every one of the Nazi death camps was situated in Catholic Europe.

I think they miss the point.

We live in an age where academics and heads of state make a fetish of denying that the Holocaust occurred, or minimizing its scope. As the survivors of the Holocaust die off, it becomes easier and easier to conveniently forget what happened.

By linking the fate of the Jewish people to Christianity, Pope Benedict was making an important point in view of the threat of radical Islam in Europe, the embrace of `anti-Zionism' by some Europeans as a way of dealing with the continent's guilt over the Holocaust and the threats of a new Holocaust by people like Iran's Ahmadinejad.

He was acknowledging a common threat, and a common destiny for Christianity and the Jewish people.

The Pope obviously remembered quite well, though he did not spell it out explicitly that Hitler and the Nazis had many willing accomplices throughout Europe, both in carrying out the actual slaughter of the Jews in Europe and in aiding and abetting it simply by denying that it was occurring...even with the smell of burnt flesh wafting through the air.

G-d did not make the Holocaust, the Shoah. It was a work of man. And perhaps designed as a warning for the future....and so horrfic because of man's tendency to forget, paving the way for it to happen again.

The Pope underlined this by mentioning "new catastrophes" that threaten: the "abuse of G-d for justifying blind violence against innocents," one of several references to Islamic terrorism, and, "on the other hand, the cynicism that doesn't know G-d and mocks faith in him," an obvious reference to the secular Left that has largely either capitulated to Islamic terrorism or prefers to remain unaware.

Pope Benedict is aware that the battle for Europe has begun. This was a speech not only about the past, but about the future.

Hamas says thumbs down on Abbas referendum proposal

Today, the leadership of Hamas formally rejected referendum Abbas' little gambit for a referendum on well, not actually recognizing Israel, but maybe acknowledging that Israel has to be dealt with.

This pretty much puts an end to Abbas' attempt to reassert his authority with Hamas.

"He who wants to know the popular will should refer to what this will determined four months ago in legislative elections," said Hamas leader Khalid Mashaal Monday night, referring to the Jan. 25 polls that Hamas won by a landslide.

"We are determined to stick to our national principles," Mashaal added.

Palestinian Foreign Minister Mahmoud Zahar is in Malaysia, and probably toting around another briefcase full of cash. He said that Abbas could go ahead with his referendum, but Hamas will never recognize Israel.

I think that pretty much says it. This one will likely be fought out on the streets.

The IDF takes out 7 terrorists in Gaza and the West Bank

Only the Palestinians could expect to fire rockets at Israel forever without Israel responding...and only the Palestinians would have the nerve to complain about the Israelis coming across the border to stop it.

For the first time since the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza the IDF entered Palestinian territory in Gaza to take out terrorists shooting rockets into Israel.

The IDF unit entered the belly of the beast in the northern Gaza Strip town of Beit Lahiya and ambushed a gang of terrorists in the act of preparing to fire Qassam rockets at Israel.

Palestinian `policemen' serving near Beit Lahiya told the press they were helpless in the face of Islamic Jihad gunmen who entered an empty field in Beit Lahiya and tried to launch Qassams into Israel.

"Gunmen come here to fire anew each time, ignoring our warnings. They know our leadership issued instructions to avoid confrontation with them, so they keep coming here and fire. This time the Israelis decided to enter the area and set up an ambush near where they fire from. There was a sniper with the Israelis who killed someone with every shot. Three shots left three dead," the policemen said.

(`Dovid', was that you on the trigger?...sounds like your work, anyway...if it was you and you read this, bechatzlechah on a great job o' vermin control.)

The Palestinians said four of these jihadi scum were killed, and eight were wounded.

"Despite the IDF's operation, we will continue to fire rockets whenever the need arises to respond to Israeli crimes," Abu Ahmed, a senior member of the al-Aqsas Martyrs' Brigades said at the usual funeral procession.

"It is true that the loss is harsh and that that was the first operation of the Israeli army in our territory, which means it may become their permanent action plan, but no way will we stop the rocket fire. Although we have to take into account a new Israeli deployment and the continuation of ground operations," he said.

Three more of these rats were killed in early morning raids today, as IDF troops shot and killed three Palestinian gunmen in Nablus and the nearby Balata refugee camp. Two of the gunmen were from the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, one of the armed groups linked to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Party; number three was with Islamic Jihad.

Kudos to the heroes of the Tzahal....rot in hell, jihadi scum.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Blaming the victim, anybody?

When it comes to Israel, you can always depend on moral well as some pretty scummy sentiments in which Jew hatred is never far from the surface.

Yesterday, The Ontario division of the Canadian Union of Public Employees Canada's largest union voted to boycott Israel. The Ontario group represents more than 200,000 workers.

The CUPE also condemned what they called Israel's "apartheid wall," saying it is illegal under international law.

"Boycott, divestment and sanction worked to end apartheid in South Africa," said Katherine Nastovski, chairwoman of the CUPE Ontario international solidarity committee.

"We believe the same strategy will work to enforce the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties."

Needless to say, Ms. Natovski had nothing to say about Palestinian terrorism, or any compensation and/or right of return for the almost one million Jewish refugees ethnically cleansed from the Arab world after 1948. Or about the logic of comparing Israel, with its almost one million Arabs who have full citizenship and full rights under the law to South Africa...or for that matter, to the rights enjoyed by Arabs inthe Arab world.

This kind of disgusting moral delinquency is a real sight to behold.

The next day, across the pond, One of Britain’s biggest teachers’ unions votes to shun Israeli academic institutions that don't renounce 'apartheid policies.'Britain's National Association of Teachers in Further and Higher Education (NATFHE) approved an academic boycott on Israeli higher education institutions that fail to denounce their own government. NAFTHEis one of the UK’s largest teachers' unions which with a membership of 67,000 educators, and they voted 106 to 71, with 21 abstentions, in favor of the boycott at their Blackpool convention.

This stunt follows a move by the Association of University Teachers (AUT), which advanced a motion in April of last year to shun Haifa and Bar Ilan Universities. hat move was subsequently rescinded under pressure. After Monday’s Blackpool convention, the two teachers’ organizations are expected to unite into one association.

At the Blackpool convention, two motions were passed: one to help aid, protect and support Palestinian institutions and universities i and to maintain ties with the Palestinian government to underscore this support. This motion also accuses Britain of `scandalous incitement' against Hamas.

The second motion called to renew last year’s boycott, and mentions “Israel’s persistent apartheid policy,” which includes the construction of the security fence.

This anti-semitic `boycott' was well planned, by the same people and with the same tactics used at the AUT boycott last year...including not allowing opponents of the measures to take the floor.

Israel's Vice Chairman of the Higher Education Council, Professor Yehezkiel Teler, said that this decision by a British lecturers' union to boycott Israeli academic institutions in Israel was reminiscent of Nazi Germany.

"Now Britain is politicizing academia, in opposition to every academic value accepted in the world. This will come back on them like a boomerang. They are isolating themselves and those who boycott will in the end by boycotted. It is a shame that England is leading this anti-democratic and anti-academic step."

According to Dr. Jon Pike, a philosophy professor at the Open University who was a key figure in overturning the April AUT boycott "There are a few people behind this, loosely organized..." he said. Comparing the resolution to previous attempts to exclude Israeli academics in Britain, Pike added: "Does that amount to anti-Semitism? I think it does, in effect, if not intent."

Writing in the website of Engage, an organization of Left-wing British academics who are spearheading an "anti-racist campaign against anti Semitism," Pike said "Let’s be stone cold clear about this: what the proposors of this resolution want is union endorsement for actions that are, in effect, anti-Semitic."

"It is clear, once again, that the proposers of the motion think it is appropriate to introduce a McCarthyism test," he said, adding that the motion was "inaccurate, dishonest, and in conflict with NATFHE's constitution."

"And it is clear that they want to endorse a private, covert, boycott," Pike warned.

Pike compared the motion to the actions of a Manchester-based academic, Egyptian born Mona Baker, who dismissed Israelis from her academic journal.

"They aim to endorse the actions of Mona Baker, who sacked members of the editorial board of her journal because they were affiliated to Israeli Universities. We know that Mona Baker's policy is, in effect, anti-Semitic: she doesn't want to have contact with any individuals who are affiliated with Israeli institutions, and those people will largely be Jews," Pike explained.

"The gutlessness is extraordinary. We know that the proposers of the resolution want a full-on official boycott of all Israeli institutions, and we know that they daren't subject their argument for this to democratic or legal scrutiny," he added.

Ronnie Fraser of the Academic Friends of Israel organization, said that the organizers of the current attempted boycott against Israel took care to avoid potential legal challenges.

"This year’s motion is worded in the form of a 'silent boycott' so that individuals will not be detected if they carry out a boycott nor they hope will the union be responsible for promoting a boycott," Fraser said.

"We are responding in the usual way, but it will be very difficult to overturn ..the majority are left-wing activists who do not believe that Israel has the right to exist, and that no criticism of Israel's policies can be anti-Semitic," Fraser said.

"Any boycott call that is based on whether Israeli academics support their government’s policy is, like the AUT call last year, discriminatory and effectively an anti-Semitic act," he added.

Acts like these are reminiscent of Britain's appeasement of the Nazis in the 1930's its closure of immigration to Palestine to Jews on the eve of the Holocaust, and the Oxford student union passing a resolution refusing `under any circumstances to fight for King and Country.'

Such actions are a black mark on Britain's name, and will be in the years to come.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Memorial Day

Today is Memorial Day, when we honor the American men and women who have paid the greatest price one can pay so that we can live in a free Lincoln's words, `the last full measure of devotion.'

The picture above comes from Philadelphia, and the inscription reads: `Beneath this stone lies a soldier of Washington's army, who died to give you liberty.'

There are various memorials all over America to men who have fallen in our wars....Arlington National Cemetery, The Veteran's Cemetery in Los Angeles, Gettysburg, Antietum, The Alamo, cemeteries and monuments throughout the nation.

They all hold a common message. That whenever America's liberty has been threatened, we have never, as a nation, shirked our responsibility.

Today, go to one of these places and spend a few minutes thinking about all that we have, and the price paid by so many that our Republic would endure. And make a promise to yourself to see to it that they didn't die in vain.

The Iranian controlled Shia militias in Iraq - how NOT to win a war

One way to lose a war of this type very quickly is not to control the borders and to allow politicians controlled by your enemies and armed forces armed and trained by your enemies to survive and prosper.

That's exactly what President Bush and SecDef Rumsfeld have allowed to happen in Iraq.

Iran Focus has the story today on howIranian-backed militia groups have taken control of much of southern Iraq. No revelation there to regular readers of this site!

Not only is this occuring in Southern Iraq, but in the other Shia areas of the country and in Kirkuk, where the Shia militias and the Kurdish Pesh Murga are engaged in a military standoff in Kirkuk.

The two main militias that are Iran controlled are the Badr Force and Moqata al-Sadr's Mahdi Army. They have been massively armed and trained by Iran and get logistical support from Iran with intel and new weaponry.

"We get an idea that (military training) courses are being run" in Iran, said Lt. Col. David Labouchere, who commands British units in the province of Maysan, north of Basra. "People are training on the other side of the border and then coming back."

The British blame Iranian missles for the downing of a British heliocopter over Basra on May 6 came from Iran. Five British soldiers died.

"We had intelligence suggesting five surface-to-air missile systems being brought over from Iran only seven days before it went down," said Maj. Rob Yuill, a British officer based in Basra.

Yuill said that the information suggested that the missiles were destined for the Mahdi Army, the militia loyal to radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. al-Sadr's men were also responsible for the riot that followed the rescue attempt by the Brits.

Iraqis in Maysan and Basra provinces and in the city of Basra are at the mercy of Shiite militia death squads and Iran-friendly clerics who have imposed defacto sharia - Islamic law over the inhabitants.

In Basra alcohol sales have been banned. A woman without a headscarf is a rare sight. Record shops have been replaced with stores selling Quranic recordings. Yesterday, two Iraqi tennis players were gunned down for the crime of wearing shorts.

Iran also has it's fingers in Iraq's Shiite-dominated central government.

Earlier this month, Iraq's Interior Minister Bayan Jabr sent a letter ordering Basra's police chief to hire or promote 50 men with direct ties to the Badr force.

The Iranian-backed Badr Force is the armed wing of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq, the most powerful Shiite political party in the country. As I reported to our readers previously here, many of the current figures in Shia politics in Iraq have substantial ties to Iran.

Jabr is now the finance minister in the new Iraqi government.

That same Iraqi government, by the way, just assured the Iranians on Friday that it believes Iran has a right to develop a nuclear program and that it will not allow Iraqi territory to be used to "threaten" Iran.

Speaking during a visit by the Iranian foreign minister to Iraq to congratulate the new Iraqi government formed a week ago, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari said Iraq's new government "is a friendly government to Iran."

"Iraq definitely will not be a place to threaten Iran from," Zebari said at a news conference in Baghdad, with the Iranian foreign minister, Manouchehr Mottaki, standing at his side.

In essence, the new Iraqi government is taking Iran's side against the US and European Union....even though the Iranians are behind a lot of the carnage in the country. acting as a jump off point for foreign and Iranian arms and fighters attacking Iraqi soldiers and police officers. Not to mention supplying arms to the militias and those forces shooting at the British and Americans who liberated them from Saddam.

What was that about `Islamic democracy' Dubbyah? Islam trumps it every time.

The Hamas - Fatah standoff continues

A turf war for control of the Palestinian Authority (I won't dignify it by calling it a civil war) seems imminent.

For starters, after ordering its `security force' in Gaza to stand down, maintain a low profile and reliquish the strategic areas they controlled to allow the sitdown between Hamas and Abbas to proceed, Hamas interior minister Syad Siyam ordered them back into place a day later...which says something about how well the talks went! it also says something about the instructions Siyam received from his recent trip to Damascus, where he conferred with Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal.

As reported here, Hamas gained some new allies when the Abu Rish Brigades of the southern Gaza towns of Khan Younis and Deir al Balakh defected from Fatah and joined Hamas. Yesterday, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) joined Hamas as well.

Abbas wants all the Hamas `security forces' dismantled, and wants Hamas to accept the so-called `Prisoner's Document' drawn up by Palestinian terrorists in Israeli custody like Marwan Barghouti. Or he's threatening to call for a referendum (and essentially, new elections) in 10 days. Some Western journalists are touting this as calling for recognition of Israel and a `peace plan'. To read what it really is, go here.

A month of armed clashes and gangland style hits that have killed at least 10 people and wounded dozens has intensified the power struggle for control of the Palestinian Authority..and all that lovely aid money.

Talks have not completely broken off..we'll see what develops.

Ralph Peters on `Hawks for Dissent'

Ralph Peters sheds some light on the so-called `revolt of the generals'..and says some telling things about what happens when there's a political layer between the president and the professional military in wartime. A great piece...

Pop quiz: Who was our secretary of war--the closest figure we had to a secretary of defense--in 1942? Too hard? Then who was FDR's trusted adviser on how to wage the Second World War?

The secretary of war was Henry L. Stimson. But it is General George C. Marshall whom we remember, the man who shaped a war-winning strategy and then went on to win the peace with the Marshall Plan. Secretary Stimson's performance was competent and constructive, but he did not interfere with military operations. By contrast, everyone remembers that Robert S. McNamara was the secretary of defense as the Vietnam war went awry, but few could name the nation's most senior military officers in any given year of that conflict.

Unpalatable as it may be to those raised on Oliver Stone's reinvention of history, the truth is that our nation's most successful wartime partnerships have been between presidents and generals: Lincoln and Grant, Wilson and Pershing, FDR and Marshall. Such professional, non-political relationships brought us a remarkable century of victories, from Mexico City to Tokyo Bay.

Thereafter, the miserable road to Saigon--and Baghdad--was paved with the best intentions. Six decades ago, the National Security Act of 1947 inserted buffers between presidents and their top military men, leading immediately to a series of military debacles or, at best, stalemates. Instead of Marshall speaking--respectfully but frankly--to FDR, we got McNamara huddling with LBJ and, now, Donald Rumsfeld, who never saw combat, interpreting warfare to a president who never saw combat. Instead of making battlefield decisions based upon military necessity, the rise of powerful secretaries of defense resulted in combat decisions based upon political expediency.

Read the rest: "Hawks for Dissent" by Ralph Peters

Friday, May 26, 2006

Abbas has a new gambit..and it DOES NOT involve `recognizing' Israel

The big story with the Palestinians yesterday was President Mahmoud Abbas saying that he will call for a `national referendum' on accepting a Palestinian state alongside Israel if Hamas does not agree to the idea within 10 days.

The Western media has made a huge deal of this, saying that if it comes to a vote, Abbas would be asking Palestinians to give de facto and implicit recognition to Israel... and that adopting this proposal would be one way out towards freeing up the all important flow of international welfare to the Palestinians, providing cover for the Hamas to look `moderate' without really doing much on the ground to actually promote peace with Israel or end terrorism.

The thing is Abbas' proposal is anything but `moderate'. And contrary to what the Western media are reporting, it doesn't involve recognition of Israel OR stopping terrorism.

Abbas based his proposal on the platform of a number of Palestinian terorists now incarcerated in Israel, most notably Marwan Barghouti, serving five life sentences for the murder of Israeli civilians. This came out May 11th.

Their charming proposal mostly mirrors the so-called Arab League `peace proposal' put out by the Saudis and amounts to this: Israel is to retreat back to the pre-1967 lines, including redividing Jerusalem. All prisoners are to be released from Israeli custody.The platform does not explicitly recognize Israel's right to exist, but mentions a two-state solution obliquely; it insists on the right of return of all `refugees' and their families to their pre-1948 homes and supports continued "resistance" against Israel in areas occupied in 1967 - in other words, attacks on Israeli civilians, armed or unarmed. As a gimmee for Abbas, the document calls for the Fatah doinated PLO to be named the sole representative of the Palestinians.

In other words, if Israel retreats to indefensible borders, releases murderous terrorists, ethnically cleanses Jews from Judea, Samaria and East Jerusalem like it did in Gaza and allows itself to be flooded by thousands hostile `refugees', Israel gets an implied least, for as long as it survives.

Abbas immediately endorsed this, saying: "I adopt the position of those heroes."

Go here for a typical example of the kind of `heroes' Abbas is talking about.

This is obviously one of the results of Israeli PM Olmert's meeting with President Bush, who wants to prop up Abbas and please his Saudi friends. In fact, Abbas has very little to lose either way, since he is essentially powerless in Gaza and not particularly strong in Judea or Samaria (the West Bank).

It's also a way for the Palestinians to forstall Olmert's plan to unilaterally establish Israel's borders and indulge in more fruitless `negotiations' while the Palestinians build up their armed forces.

Hamas has obliged so far by ordering its troops in Gaza to keep a low profile while a sitdown between Abbas and Hamas goes on.

But they've also made it clear that they're not buying it, and consider Abbas' gambit to be exactly what it attempt to forstall their leadership and put Abbas firmly in control of things...especially all that aid money.

Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said that his government would stick to its program.

"We will not recognize the legitimacy of the occupation, we will not renounce resistance and we will not recognize unjust agreements."

Hamas kingpin and legislator Ziad Dia, who's participating in the sitdown, said in a that any document that even implied recognition of "the Zionist entity and ceding an inch of Palestine" would be rejected by Hamas.

This is not about peace - it's about turf, and control over the money.

Either Hamas will take this opportunity to take out Abbas, or they will agree to this transparent fakery to keep the money rolling in.

Stay tuned....

Islamic Banking fails in the US..just like it does in the Muslim world.

Debbie Schlussel has an update on University Bancorp, Inc. of Ann Arbor, Michigan, and its highly publicized Islamic Banking division, which garnered national attention in the press.

For those who don't know, Islamic banking is done without paying or charging interest. Muslims are forbidden by shariah (Islamic law) from paying interest on loans, or reciving interest on savings. This attitude has been cited by most economists as a primary reason for the poverty and backwardness in the Islamic world.

At University Bancorp's Islamic banking division, a new Islamo-friendly mortgage alternative loan transaction program - or MALT - replaces a traditional home loan with a redeemable lease.

The bank holds the home in trust, and a home buyer makes monthly payments to that trust. Each rent payment includes a set amount of savings, which builds the buyer's equity in the home. When the savings account equals the home's original purchase price, the buyer owns it. Actually, a profit for the bank is built in, so there IS in fact `interest' charged, unlike Islamic banking in Muslim countries.

Questions both Debbie and I raised at the time were first, could a non-Muslim obtain this loan if they wanted it? If they did not have equal access to this program with Muslims, were turned down and brought this to the attention of the courts, it's a violation of US banking laws as well as grounds for a civil suit.

Second, there's the question of discriminatory hiring practices. All of the employees in the `Islamic banking division' just happen to be Muslims, especially in the `up front' postions that deal directly with customers.And as Debbie reports, she's been following announcements of newly hired employees for the bank as they've appeared in the local Detroit area media and they are all Muslims.

The Feds look at discrimininaton in hiring both interms of actual refusal to hire certain groups and in terms of what's called "disparate impact" in hiring..and with 100% Muslim employees, there's definately a disparate impact against Non-Muslims.

I wonder how CAIR, the Main Stream Media and the ACLU would react if a bank advertised that it was doing `Christian lending' and hired only Christian employees?


The funny thing is that after going to all that trouble to create a little bit of banking sharia in the US, it's working as badly as it does back in Dar Islam. And costing University Bancorp big time.

The Islamic division is doing poorly and losing money for the entire bank, reporting net income of only $14,687 for Quarter 1 of 2006, compared with $163,865 for the same period last year. Earnings per share for Q1 were -O-, compared with 4 cents in 2005.

Considering all the gushing over Islamic banking in the Main Stream media back when this was first established, any bets that they won't be covering the economic hemorrage quite so thoroughly?

General Michael Hayden confirmed by US senate as CIA head.

The U.S. Senate voted 78-15 today to confirm Michael Hayden as director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

So much for the so-called NSA wiretapping scandal.

Best of luck, General Hayden. You've got a tough job ahead.

The Council has spoken 5/26/06

The Council has spoken. Complete results can be seen here.

In first place was the one and only Dymphna for her superb piece on European refugees from Islamic fascism at Gates of Vienna: Let Us Make Them All Welcome..a great read as usual with Dymphna...well done!

In second place was The Glittering Eye: Assessing the threat at our southern border Congratulations, Dave. A well written piece even if I disagree with many of the opinions expressed.

For non-council posts the winner was The Anchoress:The Essential President Bush in which the Anchoress writes in support of President Bush and his policies.

Second place honors went to Sigmund, Carl and Alfred: SC&A Vent

Hearty kudos to all the winners!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Senate passes immigration bill

Well, it looks like they went ahead and did it. This afternoon the US Senate passed the amnesty - sorry- immigration bill 62-36, with Senators John McCain (r-AZ) and Teddy Kennedy (d-MA) leading the charge. Here is a link to how your senators voted.

The vote clears the way for a summertime compromise with the House on its version that focuses on border enforcement.

The legislation provides for a new `guest worker' program and grants legal status to most of the 11 million to 12 million immigrants in the country illegally.

The new guest worker program would admit 200,000 new individuals a year. Once here, they would be permitted to apply for a green card that confers legal permanent residency.

A separate new program hidden deep in the 600 page bill deals with the admission of an additional admission of an estimated 1.5 million immigrant farm workers who may also apply for permanent residency.

The bill creates a three-tiered program related to illegal immigrants:

Those in the country unlawfully for five years or more would be permitted to remain, continue working and eventually apply for citizenship. They would be required to pay at least $3,250 in fines and fees, settle any back taxes and learn English.

The bill does not mandate English as the official language of the US, so it's difficult to see how the `learn English' part of this is enforceable, especially if it's challenged in court.

Illegal immigrants in the country for more than two years but less than five would be required to travel to a point of entry before re-entering the United States legally and beginning a lengthy process of seeking citizenship. They would be subject to the same fines, fees and other requirements as the longer-term immigrants.

An immigrant in the country illegally for less than two years would be required to leave with no guarantee of return.

Of course, the bill doesn't specify criteria for determining length of residence. Can you spell `document fraud' senators?

Nor does it specify exactly how the US government intends to enforce deportation on the estimated 2 million immigrants who don't meet the criterion.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), of all people at least acknowledged the farce of all this and admitted that it is not realistic "to assume that, first, the Department of Homeland Security is going to be able to go out and deport 2 million people, and then secondly, to ensure that the other 2.8 million leave to go back for the 'touchback' program."

Another aspect of all this that the bill didn't address is the drain on the US treasury from increased medicare , Social Security, education and infrastructure costs and retroactive refunds due illegals for the Earned Income Credit on back taxes. Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.)attempted to intorduce an amendment to partially address this that would deny an earned income tax credit to illegal immigrants who would now be working legally in the United States if this bill becomes law.

Sessions called the bill a "budget buster" that would grow even costlier if these tax credits were granted.

"It's not necessary that we provide this . . . outlay from our Treasury directly to people who've come here illegally and reward them in that fashion," Sessions said.

The amendment was voted down by the senate by a 60-37 vote.

It's an amnesty bill. And one created to guarantee a continued flow of low wage illegal immigrants across the border.

Today is Yom Yerusalayim, Jerusalem Day

Celebrating the liberation of the City of Jerusalem and its unification in 1967 as the capitol of Israel.

The soldiers pictured above infront of the Western Wall of the Temple shed blood for that liberation..something I hope Israeli Prime Minister Olmert has occasion to remember before he gives any part of the City back to Israel's sworn enemies.

In The Book of Isaiah, the prophecy is made that the Beit Hamikdosh, the Holy Temple, will be rebuilt on the Temple Mount for the third time when G-d's Kingdom is established over the earth and that men will come from the four corners of the world to worship and to pray...that they shall `beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks' and that peace and brotherhood will reign over the world.

As the old Sabbath prayer says, may it come soon, and in our time.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Update: Fatah and Abbas lose more supporters in Gaza.

Over 1,000 Fatah gunmen defected and marched through Gaza City today, declaring their allegiance to Hamas.

The Fatah defectors are loyal to Khaled Mussa Abu Hilal, an ex-Fatah official who went over to Hamas after the elections in January. Apparently he's now brought his private army with him over to Hamas as well.

The gunmen marched in formation through the streets, firing into the air and screaming slogans.

"What's your goal?" shouted a leader. "Allah," responded the marching soldiers. "What's your path?" "Jihad," a thousand voices responded in unison.

Abbas appears to be losing what little support he has left in Gaza like a dog shedding hair in the summertime.

Another Palestinian `hit'...and Israel takes top Islamic Jihad commander into custody.

Another top level Abbas loyalist was assasinated today. This time it was Nabil Hudhud, commander of the Fatah preventive security service in Gaza.

Hudhud was one of Abbas' few remaining allies in Gaza, along with DEBKAfile’s exclusive sources report Hudhud was driving along the coastal road when his car blew up. The dead man was one of Mahmoud Abbas’ most important allies in the Gaza Strip, along with Mohammed Dahlan. Obviously the hit on Hudhud was another chapter in the mafia-like war between Hamas and Fatah. The bombing followed an incident this morning in which three Hamas `soldiers' were kidnapped after morning prayers by Fatah and beaten, shot and left for dead outside a gas station in Khan Younis.

In Ramallah today, the IDF tracked down Islamic Jihad’s `Qalqilya commander', Muhammed Shoubaki. They surrounded his rathole and dragged him out while under attack by a group of Palestinian gunmen, aided by a mob of locals who hurled molotov cocktails at the Israelis.

Four of the Palestinian gunmen ended up being shot dead by the IDF and a number were wounded as the IDF shot its way out of Ramallah with Shoubaki in hand. One Israeli soldier was reported as `lightly injured'.

According to the Shin Bet, Shoubaki was planning a round of homicide bombings in Jerusalem and elsewhere.

Watcher's Council nominations, 5/24

Every week, the Watcher's Council 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 is here.

1.Dr. Sanity: THE NARCISSISTIC SYNTHESIS - Sometimes, You Get What You Need
In which the Doctor takes apart the narcissistic impulse and has some interesting things to say about free will...fascinating, Dr. as always

2. J O S H U A P U N D I T: Saudi textbooks (after the intolerance was removed!)
For some time, I have been chronicling the pernicious Saudi influence on our political and social fabric and their role in exporting jihad to our country. Think Islam is `just another religion'? Read up on exactly what your local Saudi financed mosques and madrassahs are teaching young Muslims all over the world.

3.Done With Mirrors: EU monkey at fault in monkey eating- Callimachus has a wicked and satirical take on the EU Leftist attitude of blaming the victim.

4. The Education Wonks: Drilling To Prevent Columbine EdWonk examines a Michigan program for lockdown drills to prevent school violence.

5. The Strata-Sphere � Blog Archive: Stop Fooling Around And Make ProgressAJ's takeon the current immigration legislation. Ok AJ...but let's deal withenforcement first and worry about how to handle the 12 million people that are here illegally later. It is, after all, a sovereignity issue.

6. When government gives you a culture of corruption, make culture of corruption-ade : New World Man Matt's take on the `culture of corruption', and an examination of what kind of people go into politics in the first place.

7. Gates of Vienna: Let Us Make Them All Welcome Dymphna has a great post on European refugees from Islamic fascism.

8. ShrinkWrapped: Citizens of the WorldThe Shrinkster analyzes Condaleeza Rice's commencement address at Boston College and the hysterical reaction to it from the Angry left.

9. Rhymes With Right: An unnecessary mandateGreg writes on the notion of making a vaccination against a disease that is 100% sexually transmitted mandatory for admission to public schools.

10.Right Wing Nut House: LOOKING FOR MIDDLE GROUND IN THE IMMIGRATION DEBATE Rick is wondering why conservatives don't trust president Bush on border security, and wants find a middle ground. Sorry Rick. It started with the president refusing to name the enemy in the war until recently, his being essentially AWOL on the borders until it was forceably brought to his attention, the fiasco over the Dubai Ports deal and the frankly, dissembling speech he gave week. I don't trust him at all on these issues...he's going to have to show me by at least enforcing the borders. End of story.

11. The Glittering Eye : Assessing the threat at our southern border
Dave examines border security.

12. The Sundries Shack: Yeesh!As Jimmie Bise points out, some people will play the race card over absolutely anything!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

US House votes to cut all aid to Hamasistan

Today, the House Voted to cut all aid to Palestinians , defying President Bush's disapproval. The bill, H R 4681 was approved 361-37 and would cut off aid to non-governmental groups working with the Palestinians except for health programs.The bill calls for the Palestinian Authority to be designated a "terrorist sanctuary," and bans visas for entry into the United States of any official or member of the PA or any component of the PA.

It also recommends withholding U.S. contributions to the United Nations proportional to the amount the world body provides the PA.It also would ban contacts with Hamas because of its classification as a terrorist organization and limit the president's authority to waive the aid bans.

Of course, the Bush administration wasn't too happy about this. It criticized the bill as unneeded and overreaching in its restrictions. And besides that, it might upset our Eternal Friends, The Saudis and the UAE.

The State Department intoned that 'The bill is unnecessary as the executive branch already has ample authority to impose all its restrictions and it constrains the executive's flexibility to use sanctions.'

Of course, if the Bush Administration was using those sanctions the way it's supposed to, the bill wouldn't be necessary, now would it?

Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (r-FL), a chief sponsor of the bill, said, "The United States must make it unambiguously clear that we will not support such a terrorist regime, that we will not directly or indirectly allow American taxpayer funds to be used to perpetuate the leadership of an Islamic jihadist group."

Damn right.

The bill still has to get through the senate, and I'm sure some wiggle room will be negotiated so that Bush can continue to prop up Abbas and the PA for the remainder of the time they exist. But this is an important step in cutting off the flow of Jizyah to the Palestinians, who (a) Don't need it and (b) don't appreciate it.

By the way, here's a link to the final results of the roll call, showing the 37 congressmen who voted against it. Guess which party almost all of them belong to?

Needless to say, the nays included such notorious Israel bashers as Nick Rahall (d-MI), Cynthia `it was the Jews' McKinney (d-GA), John Conyers (d-MI), Pete Stark(d-CA) and of course Jim McDerrmott (d-WA).

The usual suspects.....

Hamas terrorist kingpin arrested by the IDF in Ramallah

Just in case anyone has any doubts about the `Palestine Authority' being the terrorist sanctuary the US House of representatives said it was when they passed a bill cutting off aid to the PA today, there's this little item.

Today, the IDF caught up with Ibrahim Hamed at his hideout in the al-Balua neighborhood of Ramallah. He's been on Israel's most wanted list since 1998. Hamed's the mastermind behind `operations' like the homicide bombings of the Moment Cafe in Jerusalem, the city's Hebrew University Frank Sinatra cafeteria that murdered five Americans, the Ben Yehuda Mall near Zion Square, Cafe Hillel, and the IDF base near Tsrifin.

All this time, he's been hanging out unmolested without Arafat or `moderate' Abbas doing a thing to stop him. Hamed grew up in the Palestinian village of Silwad, and belongs to the same clan as Khaled Mashaal, the top Hamas leader based in Damascus.

Whatever he told the dupes who carried out the homicide bombings, this piece of human garbage obviously didn't buy the 72 virgins hooey. Hamed surrendered to the IDF after they threatened to bulldoze his hideout with him inside it. Following instructions over a loudspeaker, he took off his shirt and pants, then walked toward the soldiers in his underwear. (Palestinian terrorists are routinely asked to strip to make sure they are not wearing explosives on their bodies).

Of course, the back end of the story is that the IDF and the Shin Bet are doing their best to pick up whatever loose Hamas operatives they can, to keep what's happening in Gaza from recurring in Judea and Samaria next to Israel's populaton centers.

Let's hope the Shin Bet can get this terrorist trash to sing long and loud about his jihadi pals, followed by what our Brit friends would call the Tyburn jig and a pigskin burial.

The REAL secret of the Da Vinci Code..who put up the money to make it.

Today, Pope Benedict issued a Papal Bull mandating death for author Dan Brown, actor Tom Hanks and the makers of the Da Vinci Code film for defaming Catholicism and the Catholic Church. In Rio De Janeiro and in Chicago, Bible waving Catholics burned the offices of the local Sony Distributor and a worldwide boycott of Sony products has been announced.

In Jerusalem, New York, Tel Aviv and Los Angeles, several book stores carrying Dan Brown's novel were burned to the ground in riots instigated by Orthodox Jewish Rabbis. Brown has reportedly gone into hiding, as the Chief Rabbi of Israel has announced that anyone causing his death would be commiting a mitvah, a Holy Act according to the Torah.

Ooops, sorry. Wrong religions. My bad.

But consider this for a moment. What do you think the reactions of Muslims worldwide would be if a Jew or a Christian financed the making of a film that chronicled some of the less savory aspects of Mohammed's career, let alone questioned his status as a prophet or divine `messenger'?

Interestingly enough, the film version of `The Da Vinci Code' was almost entirely financed by none other than Mohammed Yusef, the founder and Chairman of Invicta Capital in Great Britain. Invicta put up £100 million of the £114 million that the movie reportedly cost. That allowed Sony to dramatically reduce its cost of borrowing money to produce and market the movie.

Not only that, but due to a wrinkle in the British tax laws, The British government is helping pay the tab! According to the Sunday London Times , Yusef and Invicta took advantage of a tax break that was designed by Inland Revenue (Britain's IRS) to promote filmmaking in Britain.

Under the scheme, if an investor puts in £50,000 and borrows another £200,000 to help fund a film’s post-production costs, the entire investment is put down as a tax loss. The Inland Revenue returns 40% or £100,000 to the investor who then has 15 years to pay it back as he receives annual leasing fees from the studio.

Sweet. Actually, a little too sweet. According to the article, Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown was so angry that a measure designed to attract filmmakers to Britain has been used as a tax deferral scam that he has ended the program unless filming started before April 1.

Ted Baehr, The chairman of the Christian Film and Television Commission says that "The Da Vinci Code" is an anti-Christian and anti-Semitic film. Baehr told reporters at a Washington news conference, "I think it's a very serious problem when people start funding movies and books to attack somebody else's religious faith." He said the financial backing for "The Da Vinci Code" reveals "a terrible double standard" by Muslims who erupt in violent protests when they believe their own faith is being attacked.

Now me,I'm not for violent fatwas and all for freedom of speech. But what do you think the odds are that a movie like `The Last Temptation of Mohammed' or `The Ka'abah Code' would ever be made by Hollywood? Or that a picture of Mohammed in a jar of urine or a Qu'ran smeared with elephant dung would ever be considered art and funded by the NEA?

Heck, the Main Stream Media couldn't even bring itself to publish a few inocuous MoToons out of sheer cowardice.

When I reflect on this, I have to smile at George Cloony's little homily at the Academy Awards about how courageous and cutting edge Hollywood and the elite media is.

Letter to Ahmadinejad from Bush!

Michael Ledeen has a funny post in National Review Online..thanx and a hat tip to Shabbs!

Letter to Ahmadinejad [Michael Ledeen]

I just got this from a former Reagan-administration official, and of the genre it's by far the best I've seen. Ah, the good old days, when our leaders had a sense of humor and didn't mind making fun of our enemies...

Dear President Ahmadinejad,

Please forgive this tardy response to your letter of early May. We did not reply at first because we doubted the letter's authenticity. We suspected that someone was trying to play a trick on you. The discourse, you must admit, is unusual for a communication between heads of state. However, now that you have openly admitted that the letter is yours, I will respond.

Thank you for your invitation to accept Islam. As you know, I am a Christian. Throughout your letter you accuse me of being a bad Christian, which leaves me puzzled as to why you think I might make a good Muslim. However, before you proselytize outside your own country, you might want to address the condition of the Islamic faith in Iran.

I am genuinely sorry to hear that so many Iranians, especially the young, have lost their faith because of their profound disillusionment with theocratic clerical rule. Apparently, there is no way for them to distinguish between their religion and your rule. That is understandable since you claim there is none, that your authority comes directly from God and you are ruling in his name. It is no wonder you disdain "liberalism and Western style democracy." Under it, you would be answerable not only to God, but to the Iranian people, to whom God gave certain "unalienable Rights" that you and the mullahs have chosen to ignore. How ironic that, in the name of God, you deny your people's God-given rights.

When young Iranians survey the way in which the clerical regime has enriched itself and impoverished the country, and enforced its rule with such harshness, what are they to think of this "God" who rules over them in this way? As a result, they abandon their religion and, unfortunately, many turn to drugs.

Your answer to the abuses under which the Iranian people live is nuclear "power." Since your country is so richly endowed in oil and natural gas reserves, this is a strange answer. In fact, you so often denounce "lies" in your letter, I am surprised you would engage in such a whopper yourself. No country has conducted a 20-year clandestine program to develop nuclear power for peaceful domestic uses. The reason is that it is perfectly legal to do so in the open. In fact, we would support your nuclear power program, if that is what it was. However, as everyone outside of Cuba, Syria and Belarus knows, you are developing nuclear weapons.

You know that we know you are doing this. In fact, you deliberately exacerbate the free world's worries with your continued exhortations about wiping Israel off the map. I understand that your policy of confrontation helps you to consolidate your domestic power and that is why you generate so much tension. The more likely you can make it seem that Iran will be attacked from the West, the more Iranians will rally around you. You provoke us. We respond. You get stronger. Since the Iranian people will soon realize we have no intention of attacking them, they will soon weary of this artificial hysteria and begin to wonder why your government fails to provide even the most basic necessities.

We also understand the real reason you want nuclear weapons. Of course, you have the dream of being the regional hegemon, and the prospect of your having nuclear weapons already terrifies your neighbors. But you also want them for the same reason as North Korea. Once you possess nuclear weapons, you believe you will be immune, as is North Korea, from external pressure for domestic political reform. You can tell the world to take a hike and to leave you in peace to oppress your own people. This is why Iranians who wish to see a return to genuine democratic, constitutional order despair at the thought of your succeeding. They know they will be finished, that no one will then dare speak up on their behalf.

So this is not really about nuclear weapons; it is about the rights of the Iranian people – your desire to take them away, and our desire to see them respected. We don't worry about Great Britain, or France, or now India, having nuclear weapons, because they are democracies; they are founded on the "unalienable Rights" of their peoples. People who are free to exercise those rights seldom seek to take them from others. We, and the rest of the world, are worried because of the nature of your regime, because you deny you own people its rights. Therefore, we take you seriously when you say you will take rights from others – most especially their unalienable right to life – by "wiping them off the map," and we see you seeking to obtain the means to do this.

We do not think the Iranian people are going to let you get away with this. They see their religion prostituted to power and their great culture traduced by fanatic ideologues. We are on their side.

Thanks for writing.


George W. Bush

P.S. I attach a copy of the Declaration of Independence.

Monday, May 22, 2006

You can take the Arab out of the jihad, but...Iraq sends official representative to Arab League's Israel boycott conference.

According to the Jerusalem Post, the Bush Administration and a number of members of Congress were upset at the Iraqi government sending an official representative to this week's meeting of the Arab League's Israel Boycott Office in Damascus, Syria.

Representatives from 14 Arab countries met there this week to discuss ways of ramping up the Arab embargo against Israel. Among those taking part were delegates from several so-called US allies, such as the UAE, Iraq, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait.

The boycott goes on in spite of strict US laws prohibiting American companies from dealing withnations that participate in the economic boycott of a US ally..or provisions of the WTO treaty that Saudi Arabia signed to become a member, with the Bush administrations heavy backing.

Tom Casey, a spokesman for the US State Department, told the Post that Washington was unhappy with Iraq's participation.

"We are disappointed by the decision of the Iraqi government to attend this meeting, and will be noting our concerns with Iraqi officials," he said. "We have raised this issue with Iraqi officials in the past and expect to raise it with them again."

"The US position on the Arab League boycott is well known," Casey noted, adding that "perpetuation of the Arab League boycott does greatest harm to those who participate in it by hampering their efforts to develop their economies."

Perhaps we in the US should help the Iraqis and others do the right thing by making our aid and/or our arms sales conditional on withdrawing from the illegal boycott.

Don't hold your breath.

Several members of Congress were also not too pleased at the Iraqi decision, but probably not to the extent of demanding that the administration do anything concrete about it. Hey, if the Bush Administration was willing to let the UAE manage our ports even though they rigidly adhere to the anti-Israel boycott, why should anyone expect any real pressure on the Iraqis from them?

As a side note, many of the troops I've spoken to who have been in Iraq have related that some Iraqis, especially in Baghdad, refer to the Americans routinely as `the Jews', as in "You can't go down that road right now...the `Jews' set up a roadblock there."

Just lovely. Bush may end up completing his nation-building project in Iraq..but we may not get much out of it besides `thanks for your time and your get the hell out and let us bond with our ummah buddies.'

EU doggie treats..Ahmadinejad sez: "Get appeasement happy"!

Wise words from Australia's John Howard...

Prime Minister John Howard, with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, on relations with the US and Muslim terrorism:

BLITZER: A lot of us remember all those Australian tourists who were killed in that terrorist attack in Bali. The sense you get is that al-Qa'ida is targeting Australians largely because of Australia's very close alliance with the US. Is that a fair assessment?

Howard: No, it's not a fair assessment. We are undeniably a close ally of the US and we don't make any bones about it. But the fact is that Australia was a target for terrorism before even the 11th of September, 2001, and Bali, of course, took place before the coalition operation in Iraq. And if you look at where the terrorist attacks have occurred over the [past] couple of years, you'll find that they have occurred in places [that] have claimed the lives of citizens of countries that haven't been particularly close to the US. And indeed, when terrorists attack, they attack with indiscriminate fury and without much selectivity ... The idea which is implicit in your question, that if you make yourself a very small object and roll yourself up into a ball and disappear into a corner, that you won't be targeted by terrorists, I think that is quite illusionary.

(emphasis mine)

I can't think of a more perfect illustration of the difference between appeasement of Islamic terrorism and a courageous response to it.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Saudi textbooks (after the intolerance was removed!)

Nina Shea of Freedom House has a piece in today's Washington Post about the wonderful reforms in Saudi education we were promised after 9/11.

In 2004, a Saudi royal study group found that the kingdom's religious studies curriculum "encourages violence toward others, and misguides the pupils into believing that in order to safeguard their own religion, they must violently repress and even physically eliminate the 'other.' " Since then, at least in English and for Western ears, the Saudis have claimed repeatedly that it has eliminated these elements in its educational texts and curriculem.

Prince Turki al-Faisal, the Saudi ambassador to the United States, has been aggressively spreading this around. "The kingdom has reviewed all of its education practices and materials, and has removed any element that is inconsistent with the needs of a modern education," he said on a recent speaking tour in the US. "Not only have we eliminated what might be perceived as intolerance from old textbooks that were in our system, we have implemented a comprehensive internal revision and modernization plan."

Just a year ago, a Saudi embassy spokesman declared: "We have reviewed our educational curriculums. We have removed materials that are inciteful or intolerant towards people of other faiths." The embassy is also aggresively distributing a 74-page booklet on curriculum reform to show that the textbooks have been changed.

It ain't nuthin' but dissembling for the gullible infidels.

The Saudi public school system totals 25,000 schools, educating about 5 million students. In addition, Saudi Arabia runs schools in 19 world capitals, including one outside Washington in Fairfax County, that use these same religious texts.Also, the Saudis distribute its religion texts worldwide to numerous Islamic schools and madrassas that it does not directly operate.

Freedom House, a non-profit think tank obtained textbooks and curriculem for the current academic year used in the Saudi school system as well as in the madrassahs the Saudis fund overseas. In spite of what prince Turki and his friends would have you believe it's full of hatred toward Christians and Jews, dividing the world into true believers of Islam (the "monotheists") and unbelievers (the "polytheists" and "infidels").

In other words the same old jihadi rhetoric.

Ali al-Ahmed, a Saudi dissident who runs the Washington-based Institute for Gulf Affairs , gave Freedom house the actual current, supposedly cleaned-up Saudi Ministry of Education religion textbooks, which were not officially provided bythe Saudi government but smuggled out of the country.

The hate-filled teaching begins as early as first grade and intensifies as it continues through high school, teaching the future mujahhadeen that their religious obligation includes waging jihad against the infidel to "spread the faith."

Here are some cute samples:


" Every religion other than Islam is false."

"Fill in the blanks with the appropriate words (Islam, hellfire): Every religion other than ______________ is false. Whoever dies outside of Islam enters


"True belief means . . . that you hate the polytheists and infidels but do not treat them unjustly."


"Whoever obeys the Prophet and accepts the oneness of God cannot maintain a loyal friendship with those who oppose God and His Prophet, even if they are his closest relatives."

"It is forbidden for a Muslim to be a loyal friend to someone who does not believe in God and His Prophet, or someone who fights the religion of Islam."

"A Muslim, even if he lives far away, is your brother in religion. Someone who opposes God, even if he is your brother by family tie, is your enemy in religion."


"Just as Muslims were successful in the past when they came together in a sincere endeavor to evict the Christian crusaders from Palestine, so will the Arabs and Muslims emerge victorious, God willing, against the Jews and their allies if they stand together and fight a true jihad for God, for this is within God's power."


"As cited in Ibn Abbas: The apes are Jews, the people of the Sabbath; while the swine are the Christians, the infidels of the communion of Jesus."

"God told His Prophet, Muhammad, about the Jews, who learned from parts of God's book [the Torah and the Gospels] that God alone is worthy of worship. Despite this, they espouse falsehood through idol-worship, soothsaying, and sorcery. In doing so, they obey the devil. They prefer the people of falsehood to the people of the truth out of envy and hostility. This earns them condemnation and is a warning to us not to do as they did."

"They are the Jews, whom God has cursed and with whom He is so angry that He will never again be satisfied [with them]."

"Some of the people of the Sabbath were punished by being turned into apes and swine. Some of them were made to worship the devil, and not God, through consecration, sacrifice, prayer, appeals for help, and other types of worship. Some of the Jews worship the devil. Likewise, some members of this nation worship the devil, and not God."

"Activity: The student writes a composition on the danger of imitating the infidels."


"The clash between this [Muslim] community (umma) and the Jews and Christians has endured, and it will continue as long as God wills."

"It is part of God's wisdom that the struggle between the Muslim and the Jews should continue until the hour [of judgment]."

"Muslims will triumph because they are right. He who is right is always victorious, even if most people are against him."


The 10th-grade text on sharia (Islamic law) teaches that the value of life for non-Muslims (as well as women, and, by implication, slaves) is worth a fraction of that of a "free Muslim male." Blood money is retribution paid to the victim or the victim's heirs for murder or injury:

"Blood money for a free infidel. [Its quantity] is half of the blood money for a male Muslim, whether or not he is 'of the book' or not 'of the book' (such as a pagan, Zoroastrian, etc.).

"Blood money for a woman: Half of the blood money for a man, in accordance with his religion. The blood money for a Muslim woman is half of the blood money for a male Muslim, and the blood money for an infidel woman is half of the blood money for a male infidel."


"The greeting 'Peace be upon you' is specifically for believers. It cannot be said to others."

"If one comes to a place where there is a mixture of Muslims and infidels, one should offer a greeting intended for the Muslims."

"Do not yield to them [Christians and Jews] on a narrow road out of honor and respect."


"Jihad in the path of God -- which consists of battling against unbelief, oppression, injustice, and those who perpetrate it -- is the summit of Islam. This religion arose through jihad and through jihad was its banner raised high. It is one of the noblest acts, which brings one closer to God, and one of the most magnificent acts of obedience to God."

This is what Muslims are being Saudi Arabia, in Europe, and probably in your town by the people President Bush still refers to as `our eternal friends, the Saudis.'

Actually. the Saudi government and their fellow jihadis that promote this are acting true to type and to their beliefs; they feel they are destined to rule us in one big happy Caliphate where everyone is either a Muslim, a slave or a corpse and have been quite open about doing whatever it takes to achieve it.

I wonder when the West will become as open in its resistance to allowing that to happen.