These are all the Blogs posted on Thursday, 19, 2011.
Thursday, 19 May 2011
Al Qaeda online magazine translated into Russian
(Reuters) - An al Qaeda online magazine has been translated into Russian in what analysts said on Wednesday was an attempt to strengthen ties with insurgents aiming to carve an Islamic state out of Russia's North Caucasus. The English-language web journal, Inspire, launched by al Qaeda's Yemeni wing last year to reach out to Muslims living in the West, stoked U.S. and European concerns with articles such as one entitled "make a bomb in your mother's kitchen."
The appearance of the Russian translation of the magazine shows the potential that the global jihadist organization sees in the insurgency in Russia's southern flank, where gun and bomb attacks are a near daily occurrence.
With a cover photo looking down the barrel of a gun, the flashy on-line journal illustrated with color photographs boasts an article on seizing the property of unbelievers. The magazine is published in slide-show format on the jihadist internet site Ansar al Mujahideen's Russian-language forum.
The Russian language forum hosting Inspire was originally founded by the wing of the Islamist Caucasus Emirate active in the North Caucasus regions of Kabardino-Balkaria and Karachay-Cherkessia, according to Gordon Hahn, a senior researcher at U.S. Monterey Institute for International Studies.
A BURKA has been painted over a model advertising a bikini on sale at a high street clothes store. The poster, displayed on a bus stop in Normanton, has been vandalised with black graffiti which leaves only the eyes of the female model uncovered.
It is not the only advert for the £3.99 bikini top at H&M stores that has been daubed with graffiti, with similar incidents reported in Birmingham and London.
Gulfraz Nawaz, from the Jamia Mosque in Normanton, said: "Some people of the Muslim community could find an advert like that offensive and react to it, which clearly someone has. Firms behind advertising campaigns like that should be a little more sensitive about the location of posters."
Azher Rehan, 36, works. . . in Normanton Road said: "I wouldn't have noticed it if it hadn't been pointed out. I think whoever did it has a good sense of humour." I don't find it funny.
A spokeswoman for Derbyshire police said officers were aware of the incident of "criminal damage".
A spokeswoman for H&M said it was "regrettable" that people had chosen to vandalise the bus shelter.
From the comments
"firms urged to be more sensitive" - NO, it is muslims who need to be more sensitive. They chose to live in a Christiam country and should abide by its laws and its traditions and standards. If they dont like the way we live then they should leave. DJ, Derby
A spokeswoman for Derbyshire police said officers were aware of the incident of "criminal damage" They missed the bit off the end of this quote which states that nothing will be done about this because the police are scared of being dubbed as racists. Jamie, Derby
Davidson and three other Tennessee counties reported more than 100 cases of minor human sex trafficking in the past two years, according to a study released Wednesday by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.
The counties — Davidson, Knox (Knoxville), Shelby (Memphis) and Coffee (Tullahoma and Manchester) — also were among eight counties that reported more than 100 cases of adult human sex trafficking in the same time period. Overall, 85 percent of Tennessee counties reported at least one human sex trafficking case in the last two years and 72 percent reported at least one involving a child. In the Nashville area, Cheatham County was the only county not to report at least one case.
My question is, why is the word "human" in there? Can't we assume sex trafficking involves human persons anymore? What's the alternative? Don't answer that.
If it is evidence of the decline of British civilisation that you are after, you cannot do better than go to Scarborough. It is precisely because the material traces of that civilisation are still so much in evidence there, albeit dolefully altered, that the impression is so strong and so painful.
The town retains its wonderful position, of course. One is still struck immediately on arrival by ‘the freshness of the air, so different from what is breathed in the interior of England’, as described by Dr John Kelk in his The Scarborough Spa, its new chemical analysis and medicinal uses; to which is added, On the Utility of the Bath (3rd ed. 1855). To see people walking their dogs and playing with them on the beach is to be reminded of the simplicity of many of the greatest pleasures in life. And the custom of endowing a public bench in memory of departed parents, schoolteachers, appreciative visitors or local notables, so that strangers might sit and contemplate the splendid view in silence, has always seemed to me a noble one.
But there is no disguising the very considerable impoverishment of the town, an impoverishment that is actually characteristic of a high proportion of the country. This impoverishment is as much of the spirit as economic: nowhere in the world (at least nowhere known to me, including very many poorer places) do you see such a concentration of people who have given up on themselves, or rather, who never had any self-respect to give up on.
What one sees is a purely materialist society that is not even very good materialism, for it does not promote even those mental and moral disciplines that promote material success. A large proportion of the population has been left to the mercies of a popular culture whose main characteristic is the willing suspension of intelligence, and which does not merely fail to inculcate refinement, grace, elegance and the desire for improvement, but actively prevents them and causes them to be feared and despised. An inability and unwillingness to discriminate always leads, by default, to the overgrowth of the worst, from which the better can never recover.
The magnificent architectural heritage of Scarborough has been not so much destroyed as comprehensively spoilt by a combination of the ceaseless social engineering that, mysteriously enough, never results in the social equality that is it supposedly designed to bring about, and the rampant, cheap and short-term commercialism that such engineering inevitably calls forth: for the more you suppress the opportunities to make money, the less constructive will be the means by which people strive to make it. And what Scarborough demonstrates, apart from architectural vandalism, is architectural spivvery.
It is true that the centre of the town has been subjected, like almost everywhere else in Britain, to the destructive impulses of the modernist brute, by comparison with which the Luftwaffe employed mere pea-shooters. The architectural historian, Anthony Vidler, described the modernist sensibility as the desire to escape history and raze the past as a kind of therapeutic procedure: a barbaric, egoistic and fundamentally stupid sensibility, if sensibility is quite the word for it.
But this is not what has done most harm to Scarborough’s architectural heritage, bad enough as its effect has been. It is the short-term commercialism of the kind that a truly commercial nation would not display, combined with the total indifference to aesthetic considerations that years of non-discrimination have made second nature among us.
Scarborough’s Esplanade and its hinterland contains some of the most splendid Victorian domestic architecture anywhere in the country, much of it in honey-coloured stone. The architects built terraces and squares of great elegance and aesthetic unity (I remember, with rage, how in my childhood the term Victorian was still one not only of moral, but of aesthetic abuse, meaning that one could do no damage to a Victorian building because there was nothing there to damage).
The unity of these terraces and squares was destroyed, once and for all, by the humble mansard, cheaply inserted in practically every building with no regard for the overall appearance of the individual building or the whole district, which were in fact inseparable. All this was done in the 1960s and 1970s, almost certainly using the argument of economic necessity (no doubt the owners of the Crown Hotel, built in 1840, argued precisely this); the owners sought and obtained the permission of a complaisant and corrupt council — at least, one hopes it was corrupt, for any other motive is too horrible to contemplate.
What these mansards show, apart from a desire to pack as many people in and secure as much rent as possible, is the egotistical narrowing of people’s considerations. The view of the sea from picture windows was no doubt gratifying from the point of people looking out; but this was at the expense of people not in, but looking at, the building. The mansards were and are a symptom of the increasing atomisation of our society, an atomisation in part brought about, or at any rate accelerated, by social engineering, all with devastating aesthetic, or anti-aesthetic, effect.
Whether or not my analysis of the causes is correct, the lack of pride, egotism and cheap commercialism are evident everywhere in the town. The Grand Hotel, for example, was once the largest and grandest in Europe. ‘The tastes and tendencies of the present age,’ wrote a Scarborough journalist at the time of its opening in 1867, ‘are towards greatness, vastness of enterprise, magnificence of appearance.’ Actually, the building is far from my favourite in the town, but it undoubtedly has a magnificence of its own. Now the marble pillars of the portico are used mainly to support bronchitics, exiled from indoors, as they puff desperately at their fags. Criminally vulgar posters, advertising cheap meals and rooms, are posted on the dirty windows, surrounded by finely crafted architectural detail.
Everywhere there are small, as well as large, signs of degeneration. At Anne Brontë’s grave (she died and is buried in Scarborough), there was a small bouquet of flowers — stuck in a dirty jam-jar.
No greatness, no vastness of enterprise (WH Smith, Tesco and Poundsaver don’t count), no magnificence of appearance. We are barbarians living in the ruins of a civilisation.
It has been more than a decade since I last went to Scarborough, but - parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme - I find it difficult to recognise from Theodore Dalrymple's description in The Spectator of a fortnight* ago. Then again, despite being an ex-Lancastrian in Yorkshire, I was not on a mission to seek out the worst. Wendy Holden wrote a response in last week's Spectator:
Sir: As a Yorkshirewoman, I cannot allow Theodore Dalrymple’s myopic vilification of God’s Own County’s top watering-hole (‘Scarborough Unfair’, 7 May) to escape without correction. Hard to believe that he staggered uphill as far as Anne Brontë’s grave yet failed to notice the architectural majesty of the great medieval castle a mere few yards in front of him. Personally I have never seen flowers on that grave in a jam-jar, and as Miss Brontë is buried between two Holdens I have reason to monitor the situation. Degradation has its fascinations — you can go to the Royal Crescent (home to Edith Sitwell) and see the shell holes in the facades from a first world war German gunboat attack. Scarborough also sits slap-bang in the middle of the world-famous Dinosaur Coast; and the Rotunda gallery, an Enlightenment geological museum, has just re-opened after a multi-million-pound facelift. Scarborough may not be prospering economically, but that doesn’t mean it is devoid of interest, pride or beauty. We don’t have people in Yorkshire called Theodore, but if we did we’d probably knock their teeth out in the playground. Wendy Holden
*I understand that Americans don't know what a fortnight is. Can this be true? If so, it's two weeks, twice as long as a sennight.
Rebecca points out the redundancy in the phrase "human sex trafficking" - is there any other kind? - and I wondered how this came about. I suspect it is a conflation of three terms: "drug trafficking" (the origninal) and the analogical "sex trafficking" and "human trafficking", the last two being cobbled together.
Traffic usually refers to cars, not sex, a distinction that Edward Smith, of Washington State (h/t Esmerelda) doesn't recognise. From The Telegraph:
Edward Smith, who lives with his current "girlfriend" – a white Volkswagen Beetle named Vanilla, insisted that he was not "sick" and had no desire to change his ways.
"I appreciate beauty and I go a little bit beyond appreciating the beauty of a car only to the point of what I feel is an expression of love," he said.
"Maybe I'm a little bit off the wall but when I see movies like Herbie and Knight Rider, where cars become loveable, huggable characters it's just wonderful.
"I'm a romantic. I write poetry about cars, I sing to them and talk to them just like a girlfriend. I know what's in my heart and I have no desire to change."
He added: "I'm not sick and I don't want to hurt anyone, cars are just my preference."
Mr Smith, 57, first had sex with a car at the age of 15, and claims he has never been attracted to women or men.
But his wandering eye has spread beyond cars to other vehicles. He says that his most intense sexual experience was "making love" to the helicopter from 1980s TV hit Airwolf.
As well as Vanilla, he regularly spends time with his other vehicles – a 1973 Opal GT, named Cinnamon, and 1993 Ford Ranger Splash, named Ginger.
Before Vanilla, he had a five-year relationship with Victoria, a 1969 VW Beetle he bought from a family of Jehovah's Witnesses.
But he confesses that many of the cars he has had sex with have belonged to strangers or car showrooms.
His last relationship with a woman was 12 years ago - and he could not bring himself to consummate it, although he did have sex with girls in his younger days.
Mr Smith, from Washington state in the US, kept quiet about his secret fetish for years, but agreed to be interviewed as part of a channel Five documentary into “mechaphilia”. He is shown meeting other enthusiasts at a rally in California
Talking about how his unusual passion developed, Mr Smith said: "It's something that grew as a part of me when I was a kid and I could not shake it.
"I just loved cute cars right from the beginning, but over the years it got stronger once I got into my teenage years and was my first having sexual urges.
"When I turned 13 and the famous Corvette Stingray came about, that car was pure sex and just an incredible machine. I wanted it.
"I didn't fully understand it myself except that I know I'm not hurting anyone and I do not intend to."
He added: "There are moments way out in the middle of nowhere when I see a little car parked and I swear it needs loving.
"There have been certain cars that attracted me and I would wait until night time, creep up to them and just hug and kiss them.
"As far as women go, they never really interested me much. And I'm not gay.”
Mr Smith is now part of a global community of more than 500 “car lovers” brought together by internet forums.
Reading Theodore Dalrymple‘s piece on how the use of a jam jar for graveside flowers indicates the moral decline of the seaside town of Scarborough, and the nation as a whole, reminded me of a childhood story of my late father’s, from a time and place where possession of a jam jar meant that the family were in an enviable position of some prosperity.
My father grew up in the 1920s and 30s in Bethnal Green, an area which didn’t have a monopoly on poverty, and this story may have played out elsewhere in a local form. My grandparents were sociable people, always ready to help a neighbour, or give a neighbour what for, if they were out of order. One neighbour was a former boxer who was no longer as prosperous as he had been in his prime. His son showed promise in the sport and was attracting the attention of men who wanted to manage the boy. Money was likely to be advanced and this would be of great assistance to the family. Therefore they needed to ensure they got the best deal and if the prospective managers knew how hard up they were the offers would be mean. They would know that the family were quite desperate and would offer as little as they thought they could get away with.
So in advance of a visit from a potential sponsor the neighbours would assist in dressing the parlour to give an air of relative nonchalant affluence. My grandmother lent her dining chairs, Queen Anne back, ball and claw feet, French polished by her own skilful hands; I am sitting on one of them now to type this. Other ladies lent a tablecloth, matching china and most important of all, a jam pot and spoon.
The boxing tycoon had to be offered refreshment. Tea and a dainty jam sandwich with the crusts cut off were most acceptable. Few people in the street could afford to buy a whole jar of jam and there were no hedgerows nearby to supply the makings for home-made, as there would have been in rural areas. The corner shop bought it in jars and sold it spooned onto the customer’s own saucer, which was an expensive way to buy it in the long run. The china pot and spoon held the precious farthings worth, and disguised that necessity to buy it in a scanty quantity.
The scene was set and the deal was done.
The boy concerned was also a very good footballer and it was in that sport that he eventually made his way, achieving some prominence. In the 1970s I knew someone who worked in a London office with his son. Whenever he was mentioned I thought should I make it known that his father’s achievements were in a very tiny part, founded on my grandmother’s chairs?
There he goes again; Obama’s much touted speech today will embolden Islamic ‘democracy.’ An ‘Islamic democracy’ that will replace autocratic regimes with Muslim Brotherhood and Salafist ones steeped in Sharia quickly eschewing these myopic Wilsonian ideals with totalitarian Caliphates governed by strong Emirs.
From the Atlantic coast of Morocco to the littoral of the Persian Gulf, Obama seeks to force out the remaining autocrats in roiling Syria and Yemen and provide economic support in place of grants for purchase of military arms in broken states like Tunisia and Egypt. Peculiar, because nearly two years ago, this President ignored millions of Iranians when he failed to support a Persian Spring revolt against the black turbaned Ayatollahs and nuclear – mad Ahmadinejad, backed by Basij thugs on their motorcycles shooting Green Movement protesters indiscriminately.
Now, this same President wants to do a Wilsonian hat trick, catch up and free hundreds of millions of Arab Muslim youths equipped with cell phones, access to social networks and Al Jazeera to topple former Allies in the region. Problem is that his wind of “hope and change" in the Arab Muslim world is on the verge of back firing. The rising fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood and Salafist political parties are seeking to perfect a quick transfer from a embryonic Western style democracy to a Jihadist paradigm under Sharia in Caliphates depriving women, minority Christian and other non-Muslim minorities of civil and human rights to live in perpetual subjugated dhimmi status.
Regional proponents of this shift view Obama with derision as weak and untrustworthy. Israelis view him with nervous disdain. This is especially the case after this past weekend’s violent border clashes on al Nakba Day fomented and organized by Iran with its willing helpmates in the region, Syria, Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza and the West Bank.
President Obama will declare that the U.S. is firmly in support of democracy in the Arab world in a major speech Thursday intended to show administration policy has caught up with rapidly unfolding events in the Middle East.
[. . .]
As if to underscore its “change” credentials, the administration on Wednesday froze the assets of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and other officials in the Damascus regime. It also put new pressure on Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh to sign an agreement that would force him out of power within a month.
[. . .]
Obama is not expected to spend much time discussing the Middle East peace process in his remarks at the State Department despite a Friday White House visit from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. This reflects the lack of prospects for progress toward a Middle East peace deal, said pro-Israel sources in Washington.
Obama will likely speak more about Israel in an address to AIPAC on Sunday.
Senior administration officials said Obama will offer economic assistance to Tunisia and Egypt in his Thursday speech to emphasize U.S. support for those who have overthrown autocratic regimes.
One person who must be quaking in his boots is King Abdullah of Jordan, he of the Royal Hashemites, the former guardians of the revered Islamic holy sites of Mecca and Medina (the ancient Jewish settlement of Yathrib in Arabia, ethnically cleansed and plundered by Allah’s apostle of hate, his prophet, Mohammed). With a restive Palestinian majority and rising Salafist threat, how long will it be before Abdullah gets the Obama treatment and is told to take a hike to the of Fair Albion or Al Andaluz in Spain?
The other cynical party is the only strong horse in the Middle East, other than Mahdist Iran, Israel. Although President Obama hopes to upstage Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu by speaking at the AIPAC conference, we hope that Netanyahu will show more resolve than he did in Monday’s post al Nakba day remarks in the Knesset. We and the US Congress are overdue for some Churchillian rhetoric with muscle behind it to counter this dangerous devolution of American hegemony in world and regional affairs. What we have now in Washington can be captured in that slangy Hebrew word derived from the Russian, Balagan- “chaos.” Pour les deluge.
'Rapture' Movement Predicts End of the World on Saturday
May 19, 2011
RALEIGH, North Carolina -- For some, it's Judgment Day. For others, it's party time.
A loosely organized Christian movement has spread the word around the globe that Jesus Christ will return to earth on Saturday to gather the faithful into heaven. While the Christian mainstream isn't buying it, many other skeptics are milking it.
A Facebook page titled "Post rapture looting" offers this invitation: "When everyone is gone and god's not looking, we need to pick up some sweet stereo equipment and maybe some new furniture for the mansion we're going to squat in." By Wednesday afternoon, more than 175,000 people indicated they would be "attending" the "public event."
The prediction is also being mocked in the comic strip "Doonesbury" and has inspired "Rapture parties" to celebrate what hosts expect will be the failure of the world to come to an end.
In the Army town of Fayetteville, North Carolina, the local chapter of the American Humanist Association has turned the event into a two-day extravaganza, with a Saturday night party followed by a day-after concert.
"It's not meant to be insulting, but come on," said organizer Geri Weaver. "Christians are openly scoffing at this."
The prediction originates with Harold Camping, an 89-year-old retired civil engineer from Oakland, California, who founded Family Radio Worldwide, an independent ministry that has broadcast his prediction around the world.
The Rapture -- the belief that Christ will bring the faithful into paradise prior to a period of tribulation on earth that precedes the end of time -- is a relatively new notion compared to Christianity itself, and most Christians don't believe in it. And even believers rarely attempt to set a date for the event.
Camping's prophecy comes from numerological calculations based on his reading of the Bible, and he says global events like the 1948 founding of Israel confirm his math.
He has been derided for an earlier apocalyptic prediction in 1994, but his followers say that merely referred to the end of "the church age," a time when human beings in Christian churches could be saved. Now, they say, only those outside what they regard as irredeemably corrupt churches can expect to ascend to heaven.
Camping is not hedging this time: "Beyond the shadow of a doubt, May 21 will be the date of the Rapture and the day of judgment," he said in January.
Such predictions are nothing new, but Camping's latest has been publicized with exceptional vigor -- not just by Family Radio but through like-minded groups. They've spread the word using radio, satellite TV, daily website updates, billboards, subway ads, RV caravans hitting dozens of cities and missionaries scattered from Latin America to Asia.
"These kinds of prophecies are constantly going on at a low level, and every once in a while one of them gets traction," said Richard Landes, a Boston University history professor who has studied such beliefs for more than 20 years.
The prediction has been publicized in almost every country, said Chris McCann, who works with eBible Fellowship, one of the groups spreading the message. "The only countries I don't feel too good about are the `stans' -- you know, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, those countries in Central Asia," he said.
Marie Exley, who left her home in Colorado last year to join Family Radio's effort to publicize the message, just returned from a lengthy overseas trip that included stops in the Middle East. She said billboards have gone up in Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq.
"I decided to spend the last few days with my immediate family and fellow believers," Exley said. "Things started getting more risky in the Middle East when Judgment Day started making the news."
McCann plans to spend Saturday with his family, reading the Bible and praying. His fellowship met for the last time on Monday.
"We had a final lunch and everyone said goodbye," he said. "We don't actually know who's saved and who isn't, but we won't gather as a fellowship again."
In Vietnam, the prophecy has led to unrest involving thousands of members of the Hmong ethnic minority who gathered near the border with Laos earlier this month to await the May 21 event. The government, which has a long history of mistrust with ethnic hilltribe groups like the Hmong, arrested an unidentified number of "extremists" and dispersed a crowd of about 5,000.
No such signs of turmoil are apparent in the U.S., though many mainstream Christians aren't happy with the attention the prediction is getting. They reject the notion that a date for the end times can be calculated, if not the doctrine of the Rapture itself.
"When we engage in this kind of wild speculation, it's irresponsible," said the Rev. Daniel Akin, president of the Southeastern Baptist Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina. "It can do damage to naive believers who can be easily caught up and it runs the risk of causing the church to receive sort of a black eye."
Pastors around the U.S. are planning Sunday sermons intended to illustrate the folly of trying to discern a date for the end of the world, but Akin couldn't wait: He preached on the topic last Sunday.
"I believe Christ could come today. I believe he could choose not to come for 1,000 years," he said. "That's in his hands, not mine."
No one will know for sure whether Camping's prediction is correct until Sunday morning dawns, or fails to dawn. In the meantime, there will be jokes, parties, sermons and -- in at least one case-- a chance to make a little money.
Bart Centre, an atheist from New Hampshire, started Eternal Earth-bound Pets in 2009. He offers Rapture believers an insurance plan for those furry family members that won't join them in heaven: 10-year pet care contracts, with Centre and his network of fellow non-believers taking responsibility for the animals after the Rapture. The fee -- payable in advance, of course -- was originally $110, but has gone to $135 since Camping's prediction.
Centre says he has 258 clients under contract, and that business has picked up considerably this year. But he's not worried about a sales slump if May 21 happens to disappoint believers.
"They never lose their faith. They're never disappointed," he said. "It reinforces their faith, strangely enough."
Quite why the best report so far of events at this mosque in Keighley Yorkshire is from the Belfast Telegraph I do not know - but it is.
A 59-year-old man has been charged with 10 offences of common assault on children at a mosque, police said. The charges follow a police investigation into allegations made in a television documentary broadcast earlier this year on Channel 4.
The Dispatches film secretly filmed a man allegedly hitting and kicking children during lessons at a mosque in Keighley, West Yorkshire, in December 2010.
West Yorkshire Police said the man had been released on bail to appear before Keighley magistrates on June 2.
You know you’re being effective when CAIR comes after you.
The anti-sharia volunteers of Middle Tennessee are definitely being effective. According to Lou Ann Zelenik, the Executive Director of the Tennessee Freedom Coalition, Muslim lobbying groups such as CAIR have been pushing back in the wake of her organization’s event featuring Geert Wilders. “We definitely stirred things up,” she told me in a phone conversation last night. “CAIR demanded an apology from the Williamson County Republican Party for hosting Geert’s press conference. Can you believe that? An apology!
“Well, they can demand all they like, but they’re not gonna get one.”
Another sign of TFC’s effectiveness is the fact that the website for Olive Tree Education has been taken down. Olive Tree is an “educational” front that serves as a non-profit proselytizing service for the Islamic Center of Nashville. It was featured in TFC’s video exposé that aired last Thursday at the Geert Wilders event.
TFC’s investigation drew attention to the web of interconnections among Olive Tree, the Islamic Center of Nashville, radical imams at local mosques, Vanderbilt University, and various other educational institutions and ecumenical community groups.
The heat proved too much for Olive Tree Education, and they dropped their site, presumably to buy time so that they could scrub all the references and links to Anwar al-Awlaki and other hard-core mujahideen. As of this writing, however, a cached version of the site is still available, so interested readers should be able to find all those incriminating references that were cited in the video. Olive Tree’s blog is also still extant, although I’m not sure whether the same material may be found on it.
CAIR Asks GOP to Repudiate Tenn. Event Honoring Islam-Hater
Notorious Islamophobe Geert Wilders to be honored at Republican luncheon
WASHINGTON, May 12, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today called on state and national GOP leaders to repudiate a Tennessee event at which party officials will honor one of the world’s leading Islam-haters, extremist Dutch politician Geert Wilders.
A luncheon in Wilders’ honor will reportedly be held today [May 12th, the date of Mr. Wilders’ public appearances] at Williamson County Republican Party headquarters in Franklin, Tenn. Wilders is in Tennessee at the invitation of a group headed by former congressional candidate Lou Ann Zelenik, who once claimed that the construction of a new mosque would pose a threat to that state’s “moral and political foundation.”
The more I get to know these Tennessee volunteers, the more I appreciate them. I’m looking forward to their future initiatives — they know how to be effective when it comes to resisting Islamization.
In his speech Barack Obama referred to Israel's "1967 borders."
In 1949 Israel attempted to reach agreements with all of its Arab neighbors. It offered to make the Armistice Lines -- the lines that existed, between the warring armies, when hostilities ceased -- into permanent internationally-recognized borders. That is whati is called, in contract law, an Offer.
This offer, then, which required acceptance by either the promise to recognize these armistice lines as permanent borders, was not accepted by any of Israel's Arab neighbors. Nor in the years immediately following did any of them agree to that recognition.
Now we are told, that more than 60 years after those Armistice Lines were established, and Israel's offer to turn those lines, which reflected not legal, moral, or historic claims, and certainly not the express intent (see the Preamble to the Mandate for Palestine, especially Articles 4 and 6) of the League of Nations, which set up the mandates system to meet the needs of the various peoples, large and small, who inhabited the Middle Eastern lands that formerly had been part of the Ottoman Empire, but rather what territories had been taken, and held, at the end of hostilities, in 1949. Thus the Arab Emirate of Transjordan, managed to hold onto parts of Judea and Samaria that had always been part of the territory that was both assigned to, and remained, part of Mandatory Palestine, even after the British, in 1921 at the Cairo Conference, unilaterally ended application of the Mandate's provisions to what, historically, had always been Eastern Palestine, instead turning that territory over to a newly-created Emirate of Transjordan, as a consolation prize to the Hashemite Abdullah, older brother of the Feisal who had been placed on the throne of an also newly-created territories once possessed by the Ottoman Empire, all of them believed that they would eventually be going in for the kill in any case, and nothing should be done to legitimize Israel or give it an air of permanence.
Now the Arabs, ever since their defeat in the Six-Day War, have turned things on their head. They have pretened, they have claimed, that they are the victims of Israel. They have banked on growing forgetfulness and ignorance, too, on the part of Western publics who do not know the history of the Mandates system, do not know how the claims of various peoples were sorted out and weighed, by the League of Nations, and by men such as Professor William Rappard who served as head of the Mandates Commission, an advanced product of the advanced and self-assured West, and like those who served with him not subject to the kind of pressure that the Arab and Islamic bloc has for decades exerted unopposed at the United Nations.
They have managed to create, out of the local Arabs, a soi-disant "Palestinian people," and no one has asked them to explain why this people were never mentioned, by any Arab leaders, diplomats, intellectuals, writers, before the Six-Day War. They have re-presented the Jihad against Israel, an Infidel nation-state that simply cannot be allowed to continue to exist in the midst of Dar al-Islam, as one of "two tiny peoples," even as, in Arabic, Arab leaders -- even "Palestinian" Arab leaders -- talk openy of their real intentions (Arafat never hid them from Arab audiences, and with a wink-wink would mention the Treaty of Hudaibiyya) and certainly, what the "Palestinians" say and do among themselves, and those they celebrate as heroes, and what they broadcast on their radio and television, all show one thing: a campaign of murderous hatred that never lets up, not even for a second. And in the meantime, for the Western donors, the Westerners who are expected to pressure Israel, but to do so by being provided with the figleaf of "working for peace" or "furthering the peace process" or "working for the two-state solution" the general outlines which, so we are told repeatedly, and with a smug self-assurance designed to bully us into submission, "everyone knows."
That Offer about "borders rather than armistice lines" was made back in 1949.
There was no Acceptance.
Now, we are told, the Arabs are ready to offer their "Acceptance." Even if we were to ignore -- and so many have ignored -- the ideology of Islam which suffuses Arab minds, even if we were to understand that the Jihad is forever, and there is no "solution" to the Jihad being made on Israel, only the possiblity of deterrence and Arab leaders invoking "Darura" or necessity, even if we were to ignore all that, it is absurd to now allow the Arabs to pretend to accept an offer that they have spent more than half-a-century rejecting as noisily as they can, and in fact, still reject, for those who pay attention to what they say among themselves, and not what they say for Western consumption. .
That Offer lapsed, it lapsed decades ago. It lapsed after a "reasonable" amount of time. Circumstances have changed. The size of Arab armories has increased, for they have trillions of dollars to pour into weaponry. The Israelis, and the rest of the West -- or that part of it that is willing to look steadily and whole at Islam -- have come to understand, even if they do not yet express that understanding publicly, that the ideology of Islam explains Arab hostility to Jewish attempts to live in the Middle East not as subjugated and oppressed dhimmis, but in their own ancient homeland, where Arabs are treated incomparably better than Arabs have treated non-Muslims or non-Arabs in any state where Arabs dominate. In any case, the Arabs did not merely respond with silence to Israel's offer back in 1949 to turn those Armistice Lines into borders, but noisily and repeatedly, by word and deed, rejected that Israeli offer.
If you made an offer to buy my company, the only one in the world making slide rules, back in 1955, for twenty million dollars, and I refused that offer then and subsequently, shall I now announce that I am suddenly accepting that offer, which I claim you "held open" and I am free to accept, and we have a contract upon my acceptance, at this late date?
In American law, in the legal systems of all countries, that offer had to be met not by acceptance but by "timely" acceptance. Offers do not remain open indefinitely. The offer has lapsed. Acceptance -- even if it were genuine, and it certainly is not in the case of Muslim Arabs who will never accept the permanence of Israel -- at this point has no validity.
The Armistice Lines of 1949 never became borders, and are hardly to be revived as a guide to borders now. If anything is to be a guide, it should be the Mandate itself, its express terms, its reason for being. And its reason for being, in all of historic Palestine that lay west of the river Jordan, was to make possible the Jewish National Home, the Jewish state of Israel. That was its reason for being, not "two states for two peoples" that would have required the creation of that "Palestinian people" (out of the local Arabs, many of them having arrived, or their parents having arrived, between 1900 and 1940, from around the Middle East, just as Arabs would later flock, for similar reasons -- economic opportunity -- to Kuwait, the Emirates, and Saudi Arabia), and an overlooking of all the Arab states -- now some 22 -- that existed for the Arabs.
When discussing borders, the most sinister people even like to dredge up, though they do not as yet dare to bring up as a guide (as they do those 1949 Armistice Lines), the U.N. Partition Plan of November 1947. But even before the Arabs rejected it, and thus sent it back to oblivion, that Partition Plan was of doubtful legality. By its own Article 80 -- see the first part -- as fleshed out by case after case, the U.N. had committed itself to accepting, and not ignoring nor changing, the already-existing terms of the mandates that, as the successor organization to the League of Nations, it inherited -- and that included the Mandate for Palestine. But what about the acceptance then, by the Jewish representatives, of that Partition Plan? That reflected one thing, and one thing only -- not right, not justice, but the absolute desperation of the Jews, in 1947, when hundreds of thousands of Jews were still being kept in D.P. camps, in the countries where their families had recently been murdered, sometimes even kept with, though treated worse than, captured enemy soldiers and collaborators, in the same camps. And it was Great Britain that was enforcing its own embargo on ships, preventing Jews from reaching Mandatory Palestine, with British sailors firing on ships, or boarding them, and turning them back. If the Jews accepted the 1947 Partition Plan it was only because they were desperate, When the U.N. Partition Plan -- an illegal attempt by the U.N. for that organization, was not, by its own Article 80, free to change the terms or tamper with the purpose, of the League of Nations Mandates that, as the successor organization to the League, the U.N. had inherited, to accept -- at a time when the concentration camps had just been liberated, and Jews were desperate to get Great Britain and others to allow those Jews to travel to Mandatory Palestine. The Israeli offer lapsed a long time ago.
Offers do not remain open forever. If you offer to sell me your house for $25,000 in 1955, and I do not accept that offer, I am not free to come back today, in 2011, and tell you that at long last I am ready to buy your house for that price you once offered -- what was it again? Oh yes, $25,000 -- and you are obligated to accept. It would be an outrage, a farce, to require you to accept.
And it is even more of an outrage, and a farce, to talk as if the Arabs were now free to treat those Armistice Lines of 1949 as if they had always been what the Arabs explicitly rejected their being -- internationally-accepted borders. A lot has happened since 1949. The fedayin in Egypt made more than 19,000 attacks on Jewish farmers, before the Suez Campaign put an end to that. Israel gave up the Suez, for promises from Nasser which turned out to be entirely worthless. In mid-May 1967 Egypt prepared for, Nasser noisily called for, Cairene crowds screamed hysterically for, a war to annihilate Israel. Things did not work out as Nasser and many Arabs had hoped, and by force of arms, the Jews of Israel came into possession of territories, including those that they had a prior claim to under the Mandate. They gave back -- they were not required to any customary practices of victor states after wars -- the entire Sinai, to Egypt, with billions of dollars in infrastructure, only to see that Mubarak's regime completely failed to honor the Egyptian government's solemn commitments under the Camp David Accords, to end hostile propaganda and to encourage friendship between Israelis and Egyptians.
And there was something called Resolution 242, which clearly was intended, in its wording, and in the testimony of those who wrote it -- Lord Chalfont and Ambassador Goldberg -- to redraw the lines between Israel and its neighbors, for it allowed Israel to keep territory it required to have "secure [i.e., defensible] and recognized boundaries." This decision is not a moral matter -- though morally, Israel is entitled to hold onto every inch of Judea and Samaria, unallocated parts of the Mandate for Palestine. It is a military matter. And as a military matter, too, Israel must maintain control of the entire area from Jordan to the sea. The two areas, those to which it has a legal, moral and historic claim, and that which it has as a military claim to "secure and defensible borders" as recognized by Resolution 242, overlap completely.
Part of the diplomatic offensive or sausage-strategy that the Slow Jihadists are pursuing (all smiles for the Western photographers, but with that knife under the cloak) , is a supposed Acceptance of an Offer that lapsed a half-century ago.
It can not, and must not, be revived. And certainly Western governments, some at their wits' end as they try to avoid recognizing, and then having to deal with, the threat that the adherents of the ideology of Islam now pose to Infidels all over the world, should not be attempting to revive it, so that the Arabs may better push back, and push back, and push back, the only secure base and outpost of the West between Italy and East Asia.
The lines that separated Israel its three defeated enemies in that conflict -- Egypt, Syria, and Jordan -- were the 1949 Armistice Lines that, back in 1949, the Arab countries refused to recognize -- did not accept the offer -- by Israel to make them, then, recognized boundaries.
The following is corrected statement issued by Rep. Allen West (R-FL 22 CD) regarding President Obama's announcement that the borders of a Palestinian state should be based on the pre-1967 June War Armistice line-the so-called Auschwitz line.
(WASHINGTON) — Congressman Allen West (FL-22) released this statement today:
“Today’s endorsement by President Barack Obama of the creation of a Hamas-led Palestinian state based on the pre-1967 borders, signals the most egregious foreign policy decision his administration has made to date, and could be the beginning of the end as we know it for the Jewish state.
From the moment the modern day state of Israel declared statehood in 1948, to the end of the 1967 Six Day War, Jews were forbidden access to their holiest site, the Western Wall in Jerusalem’s Old City, controlled by Jordan’s Arab army.
The pre-1967 borders endorsed by President Obama would deny millions of the world’s Jews access to their holiest site and force Israel to return the strategically important Golan Heights to Syria, a known state-sponsor of terrorism.
Resorting to the pre-1967 borders would mean a full withdrawal by the Israelis from the West Bank and the Jewish neighborhoods of East Jerusalem. Make no mistake, there has always been a Nation of Israel and Jerusalem has been and must always be recognized as its rightful capital.
In short, the Hamas-run Palestinian state envisioned by President Obama would be devastating to Israel and the world’s 13.3 million Jews. It would be a Pavlovian style reward to a declared Islamic terrorist organization, and an unacceptable policy initiative.
America should never negotiate with the Palestinian Authority- which has aligned itself with Hamas. Palestine is a region, not a people or a modern state. Based upon Roman Emperor Hadrian’s declaration in 135 CE, the original Palestinian people are the Jewish people.
It’s time for the American people to stand by our strongest ally, the Jewish State of Israel, and reject this foreign policy blunder of epic proportions.
While the winds of democracy may blow strong in the Middle East, history has demonstrated that gaps in leadership can lead to despotic regimes. I have questions for President Obama: ‘Who will now lead in Egypt?‘ and ’Why should American taxpayers provide foreign aid to a nation where the next chapter in their history may be the emergence of another radical Islamic state?’
President Obama has not stood for Israel or the Jewish people and has made it clear where the United States will stand when Palestine attempts to gain recognition of statehood by the United Nations. The President should focus on the real obstacle to security- the Palestinian leadership and its ultimate goal to eliminate Israel and the Jewish people.”
The following is a statement issued today by Tennessee attorney Joe Brandon regarding the decision on May 13th of Chancellor Robert E. Corlew III of the Murfreesboro Chancery Court to grant standing to the plaintiffs and move the case forward on grounds of violation of open meetings law provisions..
Court Rules Islamic Center Case To Move
The Chancellor’s opinion from the hearing on April 13, 2011, has just been received. Said opinion rules both for and against the pending litigation. As to the ruling in favor of the pending litigation, the Chancellor has cleared the path to a final hearing. As to the ruling against the Plaintiffs, the Chancellor dismissed the due process violation. The Chancellor found that the Plaintiffs do have standing to pursue the open meetings violation and the lack of public notice violation. Both issues which the Court has previously expressed concern about the government’s behavior and conduct.
At this juncture, the Plaintiffs have decisions to make. The Plaintiffs could file a Motion for Reconsideration or they could appeal. Alternatively, this case has been cleared for trial on two (2) specific and substantial claims. Plaintiffs are in the process of evaluating their options.
The Connecticut Jewish Ledger published a timely op ed by Fred Leder, given President Obama's announcement today to establish a Palestinian State based on the armistice line of the pre-1967 June Six days of War, despite UNSC that requires "secure and defensible borders" and a 2005 letter from former President Bush reinforcing this established doctrine and not force it to return to the pre-1967 armistice line.
Driven in part by Russian and French anti-Semitism and in part by an age-old dream that would never die, modern Zionism began to stir at the end of the nineteenth century. Jews, primarily from Russia, began to return to the ancient homeland. They found it barren and sparse but they also found that all the creeks, hills, valleys and towns mentioned in the Bible were in fact where they were supposed to be. Jerusalem with its Temple Mount was still there along with the descendents of those Jews who were never driven away.
From the beginning life among the Arabs of the Levant was difficult. There were anti-Jewish riots in the 1920s and 1930s resulting in the closure of the Mandate area to Jews, in complete indifference to the Holocaust that would take place in Europe. In 1948 when the land west of the Jordan River was partitioned and the State of Israel was declared, five Arab armies attacked with the intention of taking the Jewish half as well as the land allocated to the Arabs. In 1967 and again in 1973 wars of annihilation were fought to destroy the Jews.
From the Jewish perspective there is no doubt that the provinces ofJudea and Samaria, (once known as the West Bank), the ancient hill country which the Jews had ruled for 1500 years prior to the destruction by the Romans, belong to the Jewish people as their ancient patrimony. This land has been in Jewish hands since 1967. The Israelis have always understood that this land was theirs by historical right, but they also understood that other people had claims to this land. In the interest of peace and coexistence, Israel in 1967 and in 1993 and in 2000 and in 2006, offered to divide the land with those who had a heartfelt claim. It must be stressed that the Jewish claim to the land is as strong as any other, but the Israelis were willing to divide their patrimony in order to have peace.
The Arab response has been the same since 1967, when in Khartoum the Arab League said, “No recognition, no negotiation, and no peace!” Their actions in 1987 when the stone throwing began or in 2000 when the bombings and murders began, leaving over 1000 Israeli civilians dead, have always been consistent. For ethnic or religious reasons the Arabs will not agree to divide the land. They will use whatever methods are available, whether that means targeted murder of civilians, use of an Iranian nuclear bomb, coupled to a very effective world-wide propaganda campaign to demonize the Jewish people, or whatever else it may take.
The Arabs have made it plain in their covenants and documents they will not rest until the Jews are gone.Therefore, it becomes necessary to accept reality. The idea of divided land for two people has failed. The Arabs will not divide the land to share it with Jews. Israel has no alternative but to assert its historic national claim to Judea and Samaria. Civil arrangements can be worked out with those Arabs who want to live among the Israelis and it’s no surprise that in poll after poll Arab residents of these lands have expressed their desire to continue to be part of an Israeli state. They have always functioned on the periphery of the Israeli society and are fully aware that Israelis of Arab origin enjoy a degree of personal freedom unparalleled anyplace else in the Middle East.
Specifically, this means that Israeli law will apply in these areas and that no army other than the IDF may function there; that Israelis are free to build homes and villages anywhere they please. No self declared terrorist organizations, of the kind that is Fatah, the PA or Hamas will be tolerated on this sovereign Israeli territory.
Prime Minister Netanyahu should choose a public occasion, maybe this trip to Washington, to announce that compromise being impossible, the State of Israel asserts its rightful claim to Judea and Samaria.
Frederic Leder is a retired oil company executive living in Westport and a frequent contributor to the editorial pages of the Ledger.