These are all the Blogs posted on Wednesday, 4, 2009.
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Hearings on Violent Islamic Extremism: Al Shabaab Recruitment
March 4, 2009
Todd Stein, Esq.
U.S. Senate Homeland Security
& Government Affairs Committee
340 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Ref: Hearings on Violent Islamic Extremism: Al Shabaab Recruitment, March 11, 2009
We are pleased that the Committee has scheduled a Hearing on this important matter: Recruitment of Naturalized American Somali Youths for the Al Shabaab militia in Somali- a foreign terrorist group designated by the U.S. State Department. Doubtless the Committee is responding to reports in mainstream media such as USA Today,
the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, Jerusalem Post
involving possible recruitment by radical Imams in Somali émigré communities across the heartland of America, including your hometown of Atlanta.
Despite the shutdown of at least one Al Shabaab website in the US, several others continue in operations monitored by cyber sleuths like Joseph Shahda and others. Patrick Poole
has investigated radical Somali and Muslim Brotherhood control over charter schools in Columbus, Ohio and use of taxpayer funded facilities for indoctrination of Somali youths. Katherine Kersten, formerly with the Minneapolis Star Tribune
has investigated radical Imams control of a Somali charter school in the Inver Heights School District that resulted
in challenges by the Minnesota Chapter of the ACLU to the Minnesota Department of Education. AP Award winning journalist, Brian Mosely of the Shelbyville Times-Gazette
has run a series of stories
on the extreme culture clash with Somalis in a small Tennessee community. David Gaubatz
of the Mapping Sharia Project has recently conducted an investigation of radical mosques in Nashville documenting materials giving rise to incitement of jihad against America.
I have focused on the underlying problems of the US legal humanitarian refugee programs of the State Department and Health and Human Services, Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) that led to the creation of Somali émigré communities in the American heartland. In a piece published in the New English Review, “Why is the U.N. determining who becomes a humanitarian refugee in the U.S? “January, 2008, I noted the following about the Somali immigration connection to Islamic extremism and Jihadism.
More concerning is that the UN control of humanitarian refugee processing has introduced Jihadis among the Somalis from the Horn of Africa, who now number in the tens of thousands throughout America. The Somalis have brought with them strict Islamic Sharia values that violate our Constitution and Civil Rights laws and mock our Judeo Christian values. Still worse, they, and some other refugee groups, have brought with them undetected contagious diseases like TB, Hepatitis and HIV that evaded health screening prior to their entry to America.
The Somali immigrants are a significant proportion of those included in the humanitarian refugee program for Africa. For the Federal Fiscal year ended, September 30, 2007, according to information from the ORR, 7,500 Somalis entered this country out of a total of 17,000 such refugees allotted to Africa. The aggregate total of Somali refugees as of 2005 was close to 70,000. Given figures for both 2006 and 2007, the current aggregate may approximate 90,000.
Among those Somali legal humanitarian refugees are Imams indoctrinating naturalized American youths in extremist Islamic violence.
We saw in the tragedy in Mumbai, India, late last year, the devastation, death and destruction wrought by a ‘swarming attack’ by a limited number of Kashmiri and Pakistani extremists recruited by radical Islamist groups. Counter terrorism experts and the FBI consider that a high risk in America. Such attacks could be perpetrated by homegrown Jihadis like those among the several hundred naturalized Somali youths, alleged to have ‘disappeared’ to join Al Shabaab militia groups in Somalia Al Shabaab returnees could constitute cadres to train fellow American Somali youths to undertake swarming attacks against public facilities in this country. FBI and local counter terrorism authorities monitoring of the radical Somali émigré communities are a vital necessity to stifle swarming attack threats.
Should your Committee find it useful you might consider inviting forming a panel to report on the lurking danger in the Somali émigré community that has fostered violent Islamic extremism and advocates Jihad against America.
Jerome B. Gordon
Posted on 03/04/2009 6:07 PM by Jerry Gordon
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Omar Bakri and Sudbury Primary school
I am not the only person to make the blindingly obvious observation as to why Islam4theUK were allowed to use a London Borough Primary school for a telephone lecture/sermon from Omar Bakri over the weekend.
This is the Harrow Times.
Omar Bakri Muhammad addressed a conference held at Sudbury Primary School by phone from Lebanon, where he moved after being deported.
The controversial sheikh reportedly told Muslims gathered at the meeting that working towards the creation of an Islamic state was a matter of their belief.
Another speaker said democracy, freedom and human rights were intellectual obstacles to the setting up of an Islamic state, while the army was a physical one.
Anjem Choudary, of Islam for the UK, who organised the event, promised a “tsunami” of similar conferences in the area.
Mr Choudary refused to condemn Al-Qaeda but refused to say whether or not he supported them.
He said: “Why should I condemn Muslims. I would not condemn any Muslim doing what he believes is justified according to the Shariah".
Mr Choudary, who helped Mr Bakri lead the now disbanded group Al-Muhajiroun, said there were a number of ways an Islamic state could be set up in Britain, including through a coup by the army.
He also said a caliphate could be created in another country and could then expand into Britain, where he believes the current political leaders should be replaced by ones implementing Shariah law.
He said: “I believe that these people have made themselves into God and they decide what’s right and wrong, and I believe that is anathema to our religion.” But he added: “We don’t engage in any kind of attack here because we believe we have a covenant of security here. This is not a war situation.”
Councillor Paul Lorber, leader of Brent Council, said he was concerned when he found out the meeting had been planned.
Nancy Ludwig, a spokesman for the council, said: “Sudbury Primary is a foundation, community school which serves a diverse population, a large proportion of which is made up of Muslims from around the world. It has very good long-standing links with other local Islamic groups and it had no reason to suspect that the group in question was associated with extremism.” All Council venues should now be forewarned however. Local activists manage to work out when the BNP book a venue under an alias easlily enough.
Brent Police said they are monitoring the activity of the group in the area.
It is not just the big cities like London where the move to restablish the Caliphate is speading its word. Bedford, for those who don't know, is a quiet county town (of Bedfordshire) about 50 miles up the A1 from London. This is Bedford Today, with news posted yesterday evening.
The Hizb ut-Tahrir political party has scheduled a public meeting at 7.30pm at Queens Park Community Centre, in Westbourne Road, about a perceived bias by Western governments against Muslims. The meeting is entitled 'The Campaign To Destroy Islam'.
Hizb ut-Tahrir's website says the group wants to unite all Muslim nations in a unitary Islamic state, or 'caliphate', headed by an elected caliph. This would be established using political methods.
But the Quilliam Foundation, a Government-funded think tank, has described the group as "extremists".
James Brandon, spokesman for the Quilliam Foundation, said: "Hizb ut-Tahrir is one of the more extreme British Islamic groups. The Government has considered banning it in the past. It has got a confrontational, aggressive agenda. The agenda is to radicalise Muslims to take over the world."
Mr Brandon said his group had contacted Bedfordshire Police, Bedford Borough Council and Queens Park Community Centre to try to have the meeting cancelled.
I have no information as to whether the meeting went ahead and if so what was said.
Posted on 03/04/2009 4:38 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
My advice to America
From the BBC:
Gordon Brown will urge the US to "seize the moment" to "make the future work for us" when he addresses a joint meeting of the US Congress.
Mr Brown, the fifth UK prime minister to address both houses on Capitol Hill, is set to issue a plea to the US to avoid protectionism.
The speech comes as the PM faces media pressure to apologise for the economy.
In a BBC interview he declined to do so, but said "humility" and "collective responsibility" were always needed.
He said: "The idea ... that somehow this is a British problem that was a British government mistake, actually what happened is that round the world, as everybody understands, the whole global financial system seized up."
Now for my advice: take no notice of Gordon Brown. As Chancellor of the Exchequer and as unelected Prime Minister he has ruined the healthy British economy that he inherited from the Tories. Billions have been squandered on a bloated and sclerotic public sector, while the wealth creating private sector has been taxed to within an inch of its life.
Gordon Brown is a one-eyed Scottish idiot, and a dishonest, dangerous one-eyed Scottish idiot. Take no notice of him.
Posted on 03/04/2009 5:34 AM by Mary Jackson
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
One-eyed Scottish idiot bearing gifts
The British press can't make up their minds whether the Press conference that wasn't, which didn't take place in the Rose Garden which was, as is usual for Washington in winter under a blanket of snow, which was instead a pool spray, whatever that is, was an indication that President Obama is cool towards Great Britain or not. And if it is an indication of coolness, is he cool towards our country as a whole, because of things that may or may not have happened to his Grandfather in Kenya, or is he merely unimpressed with the individual who is a dishonest, dangerous one-eyed Scottish idiot?
Whatever the reason somebody retains an element of subtlety in the Foreign office in the shape of the official who was responsible for recommending the gift presented to President Obama by Mr Brown.
As mentioned last month the bust of Sir Winston Churchill by Sir Jacob Epstein lent to President Bush as a token of support after the 9th September 2001 has been returned to the British Ambassador as superfluous to requirements in the Oval Office. Gordon Brown comes bearing an outright gift this week, of course, not a loan. However what to bring? Different sources describe the chosen item as a "desk ornament" or a "pencil holder" which sounds like something terribly dull and worthy and parsimonious. The sort of thing that gets made in woodwork lessons. It may even have been made in woodwork lessons by a child from a local school.
But it is made from wood from HMS Gannet.
There is a naval helicopter base in Scotland. Its not that HMS Gannet.
This HMS Gannet (sister ship to the HMS Resolute, wood from which provided timber for the Oval Office desk, a gift from Queen Victoria) was "involved in the suppression of slavery"
And not just any old slavery. This is from the Chatham Historic Dockyard website, where HMS Gannet now lies.
HMS Gannet (1878), preserved alongside our two other historic warships, is the only surviving British warship to have taken part in the suppression of the slave trade off Africa during the 19th century. Between 1885 and 1888 she undertook anti slavery patrols in the Red Sea intercepting Arab slave traders operating off the East Coast of Africa - around the gulf and Indian Ocean.
In other words the Muslim arabs who took black Africans out of Kenya and gave them Islam in return. I'm sure President Obama will find that little family history connection very interesting.
Posted on 03/04/2009 6:07 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
When Steve Met Jeff, Or, "People Don't Read Anymore"
Jeff Bezos of Amazon stopped in Cupertino to show Steve Jobs the brand-new Kindle. Here's a report of their conversation:
Jobs: Where is it?
Bezos: No, "Hi, Jeff, how's it going?"
Jobs: Hi, Jeff. How's it going? Now, where is it?
[Bezos pulled the Kindle out of a padded briefcase. He held down the Alt and home buttons to take it out of its screen-saver mode and handed it to Jobs. The Apple CEO held it in his hand, staring at it.]
Jobs: Three years, huh?
Bezos: Yeah. What do you think?
Jobs: I think it sucks.
Bezos (smiling): Why?
Jobs: It just does.
Bezos: I had a feeling you'd say that. Can you get more specific?
Jobs: Its shape is not innovative, it's not elegant, it doesn't feel anthropomorphic. And what's with this big button here? I just turned a page and didn't mean to. What's this book?
Bezos: A little Ayn Rand.
Jobs: Jesus. How many times can I say it? There are design firms out there that could come up with things we've never thought of--things that would make you crap in your pants. And this is what you come up with after three years.
Bezos: I think it looks pretty good.
Jobs: You wanted my honest assessment. Well, that's it. It'll never work.
Jobs: I already told you. People don't read anymore. It doesn't matter how good or bad the product is. Forty percent of the people in the U.S. read one book or less last year. The whole conception is flawed.
Bezos: You have 5 percent of the PC market. I'm looking at the 5 percent of people who read ,
Posted on 03/04/2009 9:05 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
An Arab "Liberal" Confronts An Arab "Extremist"
|March 4, 2009||No. 2270|
Lebanese Liberal 'Uqab Saqr Fails to Persuade Self-Proclaimed Extremist Yasser Qechlaq to Refrain from Antisemitic Incitement
Following are excerpts from a debate between Lebanese intellectuals Yasser Qechlaq and 'Uqab Saqr, which aired on ANB TV on February 16, 2009.
"I Refuse to Acknowledge Any Jew... as a Human Being... He Is an Abject, Filthy, And Usurping Terrorist" "We are facing a society that believes in nothing but force, violence, crimes, and the killing of our children and women."
'Uqab Saqr: "They also believe in rationality."
Yasser Qechlaq: "Hold on. I refuse to acknowledge any Jew, whoever he may be. I do not acknowledge his holy books or holy places, nor do I acknowledge this Jew as a human being. I acknowledge just one thing: That he is an abject, filthy, and usurping terrorist, and I curse him..."
'Uqab Saqr: "This serves Israel..."
Yasser Qechlaq: "No, no..."
Yasser Qechlaq, owner of dp-news.com:
"This Kind Of Talk Serves Israel – There Are Jews Who Defend the Palestinian Cause More Than Some Palestinians" "This kind of talk serves Israel. There are Jews who defend the Palestinian cause more than some Palestinians."
Yasser Qechlaq: "I refuse to acknowledge any Jew in the world, because he refuses to acknowledge my existence as a Palestinian."
'Uqab Saqr: "Neturei Karta is the most important Jewish group and they do not recognize Israel."
Yasser Qechlaq: "Give me a break. Just because some Jewish activists do not recognize Israel, you want to convince me that there is a moderate camp to make peace with?"
'Uqab Saqr: "All I ask is that you draw a distinction between the Jews and the Israelis."
"I Am A Palestinian Extremist... Israel is a European-American Project... Planted In My Region; This Cancer Must Be Uprooted... America is the No. 1 Dictatorship" "I do not acknowledge the Jewish religion. I am a Palestinian extremist. I am an extremist for my land."
'Uqab Saqr: "The Koran respects the monotheistic religions."
Yasser Qechlaq: "Nevertheless, I do not acknowledge [them]."
'Uqab Saqr: "You are doing Israel a service without realizing it.
"When it's a case of Muslims against Jews, the Jews win Western public opinion, whereas when it's a case if Palestinians and Israelis, the West supports the Palestinians."
Yasser Qechlaq: 'You tell me that we should embarrass Israel. Do you think Israel can be embarrassed in the West? Israel humiliates France, the EU, and America. Israel is a European-American project which was planted in my region. This cancer must be uprooted.
"America is the number one dictatorship in the world. Look at the torture in their prisons. Where are human rights?"
'Uqab Saqr: "Who are they doing all this to?"
Yasser Qechlaq: "To us."
'Uqab Saqr: "Give me a break. If only we would treat our own people..."
Yasser Qechlaq: "Why should we borrow these concepts from them? They export democracy to us. You criticized Muntazer Al-Zaidi for throwing his shoes at this democracy..."
'Uqab Saqr: "I wasn't criticizing. I merely said that in America..."
Yasser Qechlaq: "You criticized this shoe, which is a manifestation of this failed democracy. I welcome any dictatorship that allows me to wage resistance, in order to restore my rights and my honor. I welcome any dictatorship in the world."
"If You Establish A 'Dictatorship' Like Israel Or America Here – I Will Kiss Your Hands" "It is ridiculous that we call America a dictatorship because of Abu Ghuraib. In the Arab world, there are 100,000 Abu Ghuraibs, which the rulers use against their own peoples.
"I hope that all Arab regimes, starting with our Syrian neighbor, will treat their peoples like Israel and America treat their own peoples. If you establish a 'dictatorship' like Israel or America here, I will kiss your hands. "
Yasser Qechlaq: "We don't want it."
'Uqab Saqr: "Maybe you don't want it, but I do." [...]
Al-Qaeda Is "A Jewish Organization with Jewish Roots And Culture"
"If you go to America and defend Al-Qaeda, even though it is a Jewish organization with Jewish roots and culture... If you defend it, you will go to jail."'Uqab Saqr:
"You will be treated according to the law. You might go to jail, but at least your family will know where you are."
Posted on 03/04/2009 9:10 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Hillary Clinton Deplores Israel's Exercising Its Right To Enforce Its Laws
Israel's Jews have been long-suffering. They have endured, all over the Galilee, settlements -- "settlements" by Arabs for a change -- that have been built on land not owned by those Arabs, but appropriated, and built on. They have endured the demands of Bedouins in the Negev who have laid claim to tens of thousands of acres. And in Jerusalem, for too long, the city administration, and the government of the State of israel, have ignored the constant building, building, building, of illegal housing -- no different, incidentally, from illegal housing put up on the outskirts of Rome, or Paris, or London, or New York -- and now, finally, in the Silwan District, the israeli government has decided, however tentatively, to act by rasing 55 apartments built illegally.
For this exercise of its soveriegn right, Israel is now being denounced on the pages of the world press, eager to report that Hillary Clinton has declared this exercise to be "unhelpful." Why, yes, it is distinctly "unhelpful" if Israel's application of its laws, to its own cities, is to be judged "unhelpful" and if the Arabs in Israel are to be allowed to do what Jews in Israel cannot do, which is to ignore Israeli laws.
The story, as carried by the AP, nowhere informs the reader about exactly where -- in Silwan - these houses are, or that they were illegally built, and are being rased as, for example, Jewish structures deemed illegal by the Israeli Supreme Court have been rased. No, you won't find any of that out from the article. But who cares about the truth? Who cares about conveying the heart of the matter? It's just one more occasion -- seize the day, seize the night, for night and day the slander must continue -- to vilify Israel, or present it in the worst possible light.
Here's the malevolent little piece:
Clinton: Israeli home demolitions 'unhelpful'
Israel has issued orders to destroy many Palestinian homes in Jerusalem
The Associated Press
updated 6:08 a.m. PT, Wed., March. 4, 2009
RAMALLAH, West Bank - U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Wednesday promised vigorous and personal involvement in stalled Mideast peace efforts and criticized Israel's demolition of Palestinian homes in Jerusalem as "unhelpful."
Clinton also displayed strong public support for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. The Palestinian Authority is the "only legitimate government of the Palestinian people," she told a news conference, standing next to Abbas.
The Palestinian president has steadily lost support at home, particularly after a year of inconclusive peace talks with Israel. At the same time, his Islamic militant Hamas rivals, who seized Gaza from him in 2007, are widely seen as emerging stronger from Israel's recent military offensive against them.
On Tuesday, Clinton met with Israeli leaders, including Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu. The hardline leader opposes the creation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel and supports the expansion of Israeli settlements on war-won land claimed by the Palestinians, including the West Bank and east Jerusalem.
In recent days, Israel has issued orders for the demolition of dozens of Palestinian homes in east Jerusalem, saying the homes were built illegally.
Palestinians say they cannot receive proper building permits from Israeli authorities, and the planned demolitions are means to assert Israel's control over the disputed city.
"Clearly, this kind of activity is unhelpful," Clinton said, adding that she would raise it with the Israeli government as well as municipal officials in Jerusalem. She said such actions violate the "road map," a U.S.-backed peace plan.
Clinton spoke shortly after Israel issued a new order to demolish five residential buildings containing 55 apartments, said Hatem Abdul Qader, a Palestinian official on Jerusalem affairs.
"It's an open demographic war," he said. He said lawyers have challenged the orders, halting the demolitions until March 10.
Stephan Miller, a spokesman for city hall, said the buildings under demolition notice were empty and had been built illegally.
Israel captured east Jerusalem in the 1967 Mideast war and annexed the area. But the annexation is not internationally recognized, and the Palestinians seek east Jerusalem as capital of a future independent state.
Palestinian leaders are watching closely for signs of change in U.S. policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Palestinians were disappointed with the previous U.S. administration's failure to take Israel to task for accelerated settlement construction in 2008, at a time when the two sides were holding U.S.-backed peace talks.
Settlement expansion makes it increasingly difficult to establish an independent Palestinian state.
Abbas said Israel cannot be considered a peace partner if it keeps expanding settlements and demolishes homes in east Jerusalem. "The Israeli government has to respect its obligations under the road map and the two-state solution and completely stop all that is related to settlement and demolitions," he said.
Clinton signaled that she'd be heavily involved in the region, and said her special envoy, George Mitchell, would return soon.
"The Obama administration will be vigorously engaged in efforts to forge a lasting peace between Israel, Palestinians and all of the Arab neighbors. I will remain personally engaged," she said. "This is a commitment that I carry in my heart, not just in my portfolio."
Her predecessor, Condoleezza Rice, was also a frequent visitor, but made no headway in solving the conflict.
Clinton suggested Wednesday she is not considering imposing solutions, saying it's up to the two sides to reach an agreement. Clinton said she intends to hold "very constructive talks with the new Netanyahu government."
Netanyahu is still trying to form a coalition, and seems headed for a right-wing government, after being rebuffed by the centrist Kadima Party of outgoing Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni.
In Jerusalem on Tuesday, Clinton said that working toward the creation of a Palestinian state as part of a peace agreement with Israel "seems inescapable."
Abbas and Clinton, meanwhile, talked about the future of Hamas-ruled Gaza. After the Hamas takeover, Israel and Egypt closed the territory, a policy tacitly supported by the international community, which shuns Hamas as a terrorist group.
However, the blockade has come under renewed scrutiny following Israel's three-week military offensive against Hamas, which ended in an informal cease-fire Jan. 18. Some 15,000 homes were destroyed or damaged in the war, meant to halt Palestinian rocket fire on southern Israel, and international aid officials say Gaza's borders need to reopen to make reconstruction possible.
"We want humanitarian aid to get into Gaza in sufficient amounts to alleviate the suffering of the people in Gaza," Clinton said, but stopped short of calling for a full opening of the crossings.
Abbas called for an opening of Gaza's borders to pave the way for reconstruction.
Currently, Israel allows several dozen truckloads of aid to get into Gaza every day, but bars the entry of concrete, pipes and other materials that would be crucial for reconstruction. Israel argues that such shipments could be seized by Hamas and used for building bunkers or rockets.
Note the Arab who warns of a "demographic war." It is the Arabs who understand the meaning of such a war. It is the Arabs, and Muslims, who are waging such a war, not only in Israel, but all over the Western world, and particularly in Western Europe. Ever since Houari Boumeddienne arrived at the U.N. and, addressing the General Assembly in 1974, said that the Arabs and Muslims would "conquer Europe" through the wombs of their women, the Arabs and Muslims have noted the effects of demography. It is the Western world that seems shy about raising the matter, worrying aloud about the matter, putting in place policies designed to check or even reverse the demographic conquest of their countries and peoples by Arabs and other Muslims. It is time to shed those inhibitiions, and discuss, openly and with appropriate alarm, the "demographic conquest" of the West, just as those in Israel, an indispensable part of that West, without which the West cannot be said to fully exist -- begin to do more than throw up their hands, and think that they must keep chopping off bits of territory, in order to "remain both Jewish and democratic." Democracy isn't everything, and there are measures that can be undertaken to make life less, rather than more, welcoming for Arabs so that some, or even many, will choose to move elsewhere. It's a case of Us or Them, of Kto and Kogo. Time to see it that way.
Posted on 03/04/2009 9:19 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
That Other Senate Hearing Last Thursday
The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report describes what transpired at the meeting hastily organized by Senator Kerry in order to downplay the appearance by Geert Wilders at the U.S. Senate which occurred at the same time and was organized by Senator Kyle.
During a Senate hearing on Thursday, two leaders of the Leadership Group of the U.S.-Muslim Engagement Project, an organization whose report promotes the agenda of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood, expressed support for changing the language used to describe terrorism, a key objective of the U.S. Brotherhood. In her statement, former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright stated:
Western media are full of references to Islamic terrorism. But what does that mean? We do not portray the Oklahoma City bombing as Christian terrorism, even though Timothy MacVeigh (sic) thought of himself as a Christian. MacVeigh was guilty of mass murder – and there was nothing Christian about it. The same principle applies with Islam. When Muslims commit terrorist acts, they are not practicing their faith; they are betraying it.
Timothy McVeigh [not MacVeigh] WAS NOT A CHRISTIAN! And he certainly was not motivated to blow up the Feberal building in OKC by Christianity. Madeleine Albright has clearly put herself in the running for Dozy Bint of the Year 2009.
Dalia Mogahed, Executive Director of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies, concurred in her statement :
Our language must reflect the reality that the primary victims of violent extremism are Muslims abroad, and that they fear falling victim to political violence more than Americans do. We are, therefore, natural allies against this common threat. This will mean de-emphasizing the unquenchable demand for mainstream Muslims to condemn terrorism again and again as this assumes their co-membership in one group with the terrorists, instead of with us as fellow victims of the same crime. Use of terms like “Islamic terrorism” or “Jihadists” glorifies the terrorists with religious veneration, while fueling the very perceptions they work to exploit —that America is at war with Islam.
During her responses to questioning, Ms. Mogahed suggested using the term “Bin Ladenism” as a substitute for “Islamic Terrorism.”
Changing the language used to describe terrorism has long been one of the goals of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood. In December 1999, for example, a leader of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) stated:
‘There is no such thing as Islamic terrorism, just as there isn’t Christian terrorism or Jewish terrorism,” said Maher Hathout of the MPAC. ”There are Muslims who are terrorists, just as there are Christians who are terrorists.’
This tactic even came up at a Synagogue in Nashville.
Previous posts have extensively discussed the importance of this issue to the U.S. Brotherhood. For example, one earlier post described a Department of Homeland Security memo urging employees not to use terms including ‘jihad,’ ‘jihadist’ or ‘Islamic terrorist’ in describing Islamic terrorists. The post observed that this proposed policy was in accord with global Muslim Brotherhood strategies attempting to control the use of language used in counter-terrorism efforts. Another post discussed passages in the DHS memo further supporting the connection to the Muslim Brotherhood and noted that the memorandum was based on “recommendations from a wide variety of American Muslim leaders” and originated in a meeting with “influential Muslim Americans” As analyzed in another earlier post , the attempt by the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood to change terrorism language appears to be part of a larger strategy towards terrorism based on denial, deception, defense, and obstruction. As that post described the denial tactic:
DENIAL- Since the Brotherhood is pursuing Islamization and eventually Shariah (Islamic Law), it is necessary at all costs to deny that Islam as a religion has any connection to violence or terrorism. Of course, the Brotherhood represents Islamism as opposed to Islam in this regard but since the general audience does not understand that distinction, it is Islam which is the Brotherhood reference. They cannot afford to fail in this denial and the denial strategy is usually pursued through sophistry. That is, the Brotherhood claims that Islam is unfairly associated with terrorism while Christianity, Judaism, and other religions are not (e.g. Abortion bombers are not called Christian Terrorists) and/or that other religious terrorism is just as dangerous as Islamic terrorism.
It should be noted that with regard to Ms. Albright’s testimony, Timothy McVeigh described himself as an “agnostic” rather than a Christian shortly before his execution. In any event, the term “Islamic Terrorism” would appear to refer to the motivations and claims of the groups involved rather than their religious identity per se.
Previous posts have discussed the U.S.-Muslim Engagement Project which includes individuals associated with the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood such as Ms. Mogahed. The Leadership Group also includes other prominent former government officials such as Ms. Albright, Richard Armitage, former Deputy Secretary of State, and Dennis Ross, the former Mideast negotiator in the Clinton Administration. As one of the earlier posts discussed, a close reading of the report issued by the Leadership Group suggests that its recommendations, if adopted, would represent a significant advancement of the Muslim Brotherhood agenda in the U.S. The recommendations included:
Video of the hearing can be found here.
Posted on 03/04/2009 9:28 AM by Rebecca Bynum
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Proof of the pudding, or plumbing the depths
People don't use suet so much these days. You could say it's falling into desuetude.
Posted on 03/04/2009 11:50 AM by Mary Jackson
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Sunday, March 8, 2009 - Save Women Now Rally - in Washington DC
Jeffrey Imm sends us this news:
We will be holding a Washington DC rally on March 8 at the front of the Capitol Reflecting Pool beginning at 1 PM to address the global challenge of women oppressed and killed in the name of Islamic supremacism. We will demand that our legislators recognize the threat to women around the world by this supremacist ideology.
Sign the Save Women Now Petition demanding that U.S. government and United Nations representatives recognize the ideology of Islamic supremacism as a source of oppression and violence to women in America and around the world.
Sunday, March 8 is International Women’s Day, and we seek to make a public statement that calls for our representatives and world bodies to acknowledge that Islamic supremacism threatens women today and that its leaders and supporters use Islamic supremacism as an institution to legitimize violence and hate against women. We call for national and international action against Islamic supremacism to Save Women Now, and defy those who believe that mutilation, oppression, and murder of women is an Islamic supremacist “right.”
For directions to the March 8 Save Women Now rally, see map of the Capitol compound and nearby Washington DC metro stops. Federal Center SW and Capitol South subway stops are the closest to the Capitol reflecting pool, but the Smithsonian subway stop walking along the national mall is also a pleasant stroll. This weblink provides a 360 degree view of the area in front of the Capitol reflecting pool; you can move the image by clicking on it and dragging it with your mouse.
The rally will take place on the “Third Street” side of the Capitol reflecting pool, which is in “front” of the reflecting pool as you are facing the Capitol building. The Capitol reflecting pool is along side Maryland Avenue SW, which connects to Third Street SW. It is next to the United States Botanical Garden on Independence Avenue SW and Third Street SW....
Posted on 03/04/2009 12:16 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
England People Very Nice
In a couple of weeks, I will be going to see a "racist" play. In the mouths of the politically correct, "racist" might just as well be another word for funny or honest. Charles Spencer in The Telegraph:
I am rather surprised that Richard Bean's allegedly "racist" play hasn't caused more of a fuss, for England People Very Nice seems cheerfully hell-bent on causing maximum offence to almost everyone.
It follows four successive waves of immigration into London's East End, ranging from snooty French Huguenots and the bog Irish who sleep with their pigs, to bacon-sandwich throwing Jews and finally the Muslims from Bangladesh.
All are ruthlessly lampooned and stereotyped in a play that argues that the English have always been a mongrel race, and that racial prejudice is a natural part of human nature – and absurd. Indeed, the very fact that the piece is being performed, in an entirely colour-blind manner, by a multiracial cast, is evidence that such prejudice can be overcome.
The play's deliberately crude, Carry On-style of humour has also offended some. The shadow children's secretary, Michael Gove, described it as "dramatically appalling. I thought the humour was vulgar, raucous, obvious. It made Alf Garnett seem sophisticated."
Vulgar raucousness is very much a part of the British character, however, even if Gove does deplore it, and Bean has important things to tell us about the way we live now, even if he often adopts the style of his own former career as a stand-up comedian. But by the end, Bean is making a desperately serious point. Having shown how successive generations of immigrants to Britain have integrated into the mainstream, he comes to jihadist Muslims who want no part of British society, and actively wish it harm.
We listen to the malign ravings of inflammatory mullahs and, in one telling scene, watch as a teacher in full burka declines to shake hands with the white parents of one of her pupils.
Beyond the jokes in dubious taste, Bean is warning of a clear and present danger to British society – a danger many hand-wringing liberals prefer to pretend doesn't exist. This isn't a racist play, but it is a play that courageously attacks militant Islam at its most malign.
Vulgar, raucous, poking fun at stereotypes and showing the exception - Islam - to London's rule of rubbing along together? This sounds like my kind of play. If the Muslims are whingeing about it it can't be all bad. Well, some Muslims, anyway. Just look at this crowd. From Islamophobia Watch:
A demonstration against the play England People Very Nice was held outside the National Theatre on Friday. At one point a large banner was displayed from a balcony.
The protest, under the banner "Love Theatre Hate Racism", was organised by Bethnal Green playwright Hussain Ismail. Cllr Abjol Miah, leader of the Respect group on Tower Hamlets Council, was present with several objectors from the East End.
"I am passionate about theatre and I don't think theatre should be used to peddle racist filth under the guise of comedy and serious theatre." Hussain Ismail told the small crowd of passers-by on the riverside who stopped to listen to speeches. "We don't need to be told about multi-culturalism by an elitist institution that does not represent multi-cultural London. What we need to do is to challenge the racist rubbish."
I will report back, once I've seen the play. London is probably the most tolerant city in the world. But with Islam, tolerance is weakness.
Posted on 03/04/2009 6:43 PM by Mary Jackson
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Soon: A Judenrein Indonesia?
Richard Greene writes:
At the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, Jews from the ancient Baghdadian Jewish community (nowadays known as "Iraqi Jews") -- possibly the longest continuous Jewish community on earth -- left the anti-Jewish living hell of the Ottoman Empire (the book to read is Andrew Bostom's groundbreaking, The Legacy of Islamic Antisemitism: From Sacred Texts to Solemn History, 2008) for greener pastures in South Asia. They migrated first to Bombay, then spread out to the port cities of Rangoon (part of British India until 1948), Singapore and finally Surabaya, Java, part of the Dutch East Indies. They were mostly traders and merchants.
By the late 1930s, on the other side of the globe, in the opposite hemisphere, plans were being hatched that would one day affect the Jews who had settled on the jungle-island of Java. A man named Hitler declared that eventually (1) Nazi Germany would rule the world and (2) the Jews would be wiped off the face of the earth.
In March 1942, Hitler's ally, Imperial Japan, invaded and occupied the Dutch East Indies. The following riveting account of what transpired as to the Surabayan Jewish community is from a monograph by Prof. Jeffrey Hadler, "Translations of Antisemitism: Jews, the Chinese, and Violence in Colonial and Post-colonial Indonesia," Indonesia and the Malay World, Vol. 32, No. 94, pp. 302-303, Nov. 2004, (Hadler's account in turn is in large part based on an oral history provided by one of my relatives):
"Japanese soldiers made house-to-house searches in the European quarter of Surabaya, marking the houses of both friendly (German, French) and enemy nationals. They first went through the Armenian neighborhood, and asked the Armenians what they were. The Armenians explained that they were Armenian, that they had no country, that they had been living in the Indies for generations. The Japanese responded that they were at war with countries, and not with races. Deracinated and countryless folk fit into no wartime categories, and so the Armenians would be considered 'friends'. Immediately the Armenians telephoned the Jews and advised them to claim that they were just Jews [known as "white Arabs" by the locals], and not to reveal their true nationalities [as they were mostly British and Dutch subjects, i.e., the enemy]. The strategy worked. All the enemy Europeans were interned and placed in a cordoned-off section of town with the exception of the Armenians and Jews, who were left to roam and trade freely."
Over a year later, rumors began to spread that Gestapo officials had arrived in Surabaya. Prof. Hadler continues:
"The Nazis supposedly asked the Kempeitai [the dreaded Japanese military police]: who have you imprisoned? The Japanese answered that all enemy nationals except the two white races, Jews and Armenians, were jailed. The Gestapo was apoplectic, and ordered the immediate arrest of all Jews."
On August 31, 1943, the roundup of Jews began. Jewish homes were stormed by Japanese soldiers, bayonets fixed, to shouts of "Yudaya bakayaro!" ("damned Jews!"). The men were separated from the women and children, and eventually taken by trucks and trains to prison camps (the movie to see is the 1997 film Paradise Road). As the war dragged on and the Japanese began running out of food to feed their army, let alone civilians languishing in their concentration camps, near-starvation set in amongst the internees. In the waning days of the war, prisoners were forced to dig trenches, widely believed by them to be their own mass graves.
But everything instantly changed when the atom bomb abruptly and unexpectedly ended the war, freeing the Jewish prisoners from suffering the same fate as their European brethren. Two of those survivors were my parents, who came to America in 1950.
Flash forward to earlier this year. This is from the Jakarta Post:
Jewish synagogue in Surabaya sealed
Ridwan Max Sijabat, The Jakarta Post, Surabaya | Thu, 01/08/2009 9:39 PM | National
With anti-Israel and anti-US large-scale rallies continuing, a group of Muslim protesters has closed down a synagogue belonging to a Jewish community in Surabaya Wednesday and called for a boycott of US-linked products in the province.
The sealing of the synagogue followed demonstrations organized by local mass organizations who have condemned Israeli assaults on the Gaza Strip which have already killed more than 500 Palestinian residents in the past two weeks.
Carrying anti-Israel and anti-US banners through the main thoroughfares in front of the governor's office and crowded shopping centers, the protesters moved to the nearby synagogue.
They held a free speech forum there which ended with the burning of Israeli and US flags and the sealing of the synagogue.
Abdusshomad Buchori who coordinated the rally said the group would organize a mass effort to drive American citizens of Jewish descent out of the city and ban US-linked businesses such as Kentucky Fried Chicken and McDonald's outlets until the attacks halted.
"If Israel refuses to stop its attacks on the Palestinian people immediately, we will conduct a sweep for sympathizers, supporters and Israeli agents in the province," he said. . . . [ ]
Today all of Indonesia has only one functioning synagogue, the one closed down by the Jihadists in Surabaya. My parents were married in that tiny schul (photos of the synagogue are available online at the Jewish Virtual Library). Since the Israel-Hamas Gaza War began, I've been reliably informed that Indonesian Islamists have published the names of the approximately 20 Jews remaining in Java in a local newspaper, so as to intimidate them into leaving the country.
Indonesia has the largest Muslim population of any country in the world -- 250,000,000 -- but never has had diplomatic relations with Israel. Today, Jews comprise a more than miniscule 0.00000008% of the Indonesian population! Countrywide, Islamic supremacism is slowly winning out against traditional Indonesian religious tolerance (just ask the mostly Hindu Balinese). In 1970, you could walk the streets of the capital, Jakarta, for days with nary a "jilbab" (Indonesian version of the "hijab" or Islamic head-scarf) in sight. Today, thanks to Saudi-Wahabbist petrodollars, fundamentalist Arab-Muslim Sharia norms are starting to take hold in Indonesian society, and the jilbab is a common sight, even being forced on non-Muslim female students in some districts.
Much more ominously, according to Reuters, when Holocaust denier Ahmadinejad visited Indonesia in 2006, he was treated as a rock star, especially on college campuses.
Alas, Hitler's wish for the world may in our time become a reality for the polity known today as Indonesia.
Posted on 03/04/2009 6:52 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Gordon Brown To U.S. Congress
Extract (with thanks to "The Law"):
"And let us never forget in times of turmoil our duty to the least of these, the poorest of the world.
In the Rwandan Museum of Genocide there is a memorial to the countless children who were among those murdered in the massacres in Rwanda, and there is one portrait of a child, David. The words beneath him are brief, yet they weigh on me heavily. It says “Name David, age 10, favourite sport football, enjoyed making people laugh, dream to become a doctor, cause of death, tortured to death, last words, “the United Nations will come for us.” “
But we never did. That child believed the best of us. That he was wrong is to our eternal discredit. We tend to think of a day of judgement as a moment to come but our faith tells us, as the writer said that judgement is more than that. It’s a summary court in perpetual session.
And when I visit those bare rundown, yet teeming classrooms across Africa, they are full of children, like our children, desperate to learn.
But because we’ve been unable as a world to keep our promises to help, more and more children, I tell you, are being lured to expensively funded madrassas teaching innocent children to hate us.
So for our security, and our children’s security, and these children’s future, you know the greatest gift of our generation, the greatest gift we could give to the world, the gift of America and Britain, could be that every child in every country, should have the chance, seventy million children today do not have, the chance to go to school, to spell their names, to count their age, and perhaps learn of a great generation who are striving to make their freedom real...."
The folly, the misunderstanding, the naiveté. Where to start?
Posted on 03/04/2009 7:08 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Made My Day, Or, This Man Wants But Little Here Below
"For members, Costco offers the Proscan 32" 720p Widescreen LCD HD Television, model no. 32LC30Q, for $329.99 plus $19.99 for shipping. (Non-members pay $16 more.) That's $45 under our January mention and the lowest total price we've ever seen for a Proscan-brand 32" LCD TV. Sales tax is added where applicable. Features include 1366x768 native resolution, 1,200:1 contrast ratio, 5ms response time, two HDMI inputs, and VGA, component, and other video inputs. Deal ends March 22."
Nota Bene: "Features include 1366x768 native resolution."
Native resolution? Yes, as to the colors on the Proscan 32" 720p Widescreen LCD HD Television, model no. 32LC30Q, you should really check out the native hue of resolution. It's fantastic.
Posted on 03/04/2009 7:50 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
A Musical Interlude: It All Depends On You (Fred Rich Orch., voc. Irving Kaufman)
Posted on 03/04/2009 7:58 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Stephen Walt Off The Even Deeper End
The paranoia of Stephen Walt
Ever since he co-authored the wildly hyperbolic tome The Israel Lobby, Stephen Walt has been on his best behavior. He has authored a lot of staid hard-realist commentary about foreign policy and kept his fulminations about "The Lobby," as he liked to call it, more restrained--all the better to project his favored self-image as a thoughtful academic beset by agenda-driven ideologues.
But every once in a while, Walt lets his inner paranoid slip loose. One such moment occurred last weekend. I wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post criticizing Chas Freeman, the new director of the National Intelligence Council, who has praised Walt and shares much of his worldview. Walt promptly went bonkers on his Foreign Policy blog.
The tone of Walt's piece is reflected in the deliciously over-the-top title "The despicable smear campaign against Charles Freeman." I particularly enjoy the redundant adjectives--those readers not adequately moved to outrage by a smear campaign, he apparently calculated, will be rise to Freeman's side to learn that it's a despicable smear campaign.
The rest follows in that vein. Walt wrote:
As soon as the appointment was announced, a bevy of allegedly
"pro-Israel" pundits leapt to attack it, in what The Nation's Robert
Dreyfuss called a "thunderous, coordinated assault." Freeman's
critics were the usual suspects: Jonathan Chait of the New Republic,
Michael Goldfarb at the Weekly Standard, Jeffrey Goldberg of the
Atlantic, Gabriel Schoenfeld writing on the op-ed page of the Wall
Street Journal), Jonah Goldberg of National Review, Marty Peretz
on his New Republic blog, and former AIPAC official Steve Rosen.
A couple points here. First, I'm a little curious about this accusation that Freeman's critics "coordinated" our writings. Speaking personally, I did not coordinate with anybody. I can't speak for the others. It's possible they coordinated with each other, but I haven't seen any evidence that they have. It's certainly a strange thing to assume without evidence.
Second, Walt--in a breach of very basic internet etiquette--did not link to any of the columns by the critics he cited, which would have made it easier for his readers to see for themselves what Chait, Goldfarb, et al had to say about Freeman. Instead Walt proceeded to characterize the arguments against Freeman as purely focused on his views on Israel:
What unites this narrow band of critics is only one thing: Freeman
has dared to utter some rather mild public criticisms of Israeli
policy. That's the litmus test that Chait, Goldberg, Goldfarb, Peretz,
Schoenfeld et al want to apply to all public servants: thou shalt not
criticize Israeli policy nor question America's "special relationship"
This is even more strange. My op-ed did not argue that Freeman's views on Israel ought to disqualify him. To the contrary, I argued, "the contretemps over Freeman's view of Israel misses the broader problem, which is that he's an ideological fanatic." This was not a throwaway line. It was the last sentence of my first paragraph--the "topic sentence," which I intentionally placed there so any reader who had made it through 9th grade English would recognize it as the thesis of my column.
In fact, none of the other writers cited by Walt argued that Freeman's views on Israel alone should disqualify him. Jeffrey Goldberg and Jonah Goldberg cited Freeman's close financial ties with Saudi Arabia. Marty Peretz mostly focused on that as well, but did mention Freeman's views on Israel as well. Goldfarb and Schoenfeld gave most of their attention to Freeman's approval of the Tiananmen Square massacre (to be precise, Freeman disapproved, but on the grounds that China was too soft on the protestors) while also mentioning Freeman's Israel views and Saudi connections.
Walt's contention that these various writers applied a single-issue litmus test to Freeman's appointment is thus demonstrably untrue. It's as if he didn't even read the criticism and instead relied on an assumption. Another odd note is that he included in the list of critics National Review's Jonah Goldberg, who wrote just two very short blog posts on Freeman, both of which consisted of quoting other people, while excluding from his list Michael Rubin, Andrew McCarthy and Victor Davis Hanson, all of whom wrote much more extensive commentary about the Freeman appointment for National Review.
Anyway, that single, straw-man characterization accounts for Walt's entire substantive reply. The rest of the piece is taken up with hand-waving against the anti-Freeman conspirators. A sea of hyperbole washes over the reader: "infamous witch hunt," "lies," "innuendo," "intimidation," "attack," "remain silent," "heavy-handed," "McCarthy-like," "stifle debate," "un-American," and a creative sampling of different ways to incorporate the term "smear"--"smear campaign," "malicious smears," "smearing," and of course just plain "smear."
Doesn't Walt have any interest in addressing the serious charges made against Freeman? The comments on Tiananmen do seem, at the very least, rather nasty and illiberal, do they not? And you would think that Walt, who is known to have strong feelings on the topic of foreign influence over U.S. foreign policy, might at least acknowledge the potential complications of Freeman's Saudi ties. But he literally says nothing about these topics. The closest he comes is an ad hominem attack on the Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg (who wrote a highly critical review of Walt's book for TNR):
A journalist (Jeffrey Goldberg) whose idea of "public service"
was to enlist in the Israeli army is challenging the credentials
of a man who devoted decades of his life to service in the U.S.
So Goldberg's post-college aliyah to Israel, where he did serve in the Army (and produced a book criticizing the occupation) ought to cast aspersions on his patriotism. But Freeman's service on behalf of illiberal regimes like Saudi Arabia, whose king he called, in an interview with an official Saudi news service, "Abdullah the Great," is just as American as apple pie.
It seems to me that when you are baselessly accusing a group of people of conspiring together, wildly distorting their views, and questioning their patriotism, then you are coming pretty close to an objective definition of "smear." I think Walt has a right to express his opinion, unpersuasive though his opinion may be. The thing about Walt is that he thinks contrary opinions on matters close to his heart are inherently acts of smearing, intimidation, and conspiracy. Even his critics like to credit Walt with opening the dialogue. But opening is clearly not what he's after.
Posted on 03/04/2009 8:17 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
"after a long hiatus"
"I took a hiatus"
"He was on hiatus and missed the news"
"the touring company needed a hiatus"
Stop it, will you. Just stop it. Stop being an idiot.
I can only take so much of this.
Posted on 03/04/2009 8:24 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald