These are all the Blogs posted on Monday, 7, 2010.
Monday, 7 June 2010
Israeli troops kill four Palestinian divers on boat off Gaza
From The Telegraph
An Israeli naval patrol has killed at least four Palestinian militants in diving gear off the Gaza coast, according to Hamas security officials and the Israeli army.
The attack comes one week after Israeli commandos killed nine activists in a raid on an aid flotilla headed for the Gaza Strip, sparking international condemnation. The Israeli army said the men killed in the latest attack were terrorists
"An Israeli naval patrol spotted a boat with four men in diving suits on their way to carry out a terror attack and fired at them," an Israeli army spokesman said, adding that the patrol had confirmed hitting their targets.
The spokesman did not say what the army thought was the intended objective of the divers.
Hamas security sources said four bodies had been found and a fifth man was missing and was presumed dead. The bodies were taken to a Gaza hospital.
Posted on 06/07/2010 2:46 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Monday, 7 June 2010
Gunmen kill politician of winning Iraqi bloc
The Iraqiya bloc, although fronted by Shi'ite Ayad Allawi, is a Sunni group. The gunmen were most likely Shi'a. Note that the Sunni Iraqiya party won the most votes, but (unlike the recent election in the UK) the losing Shi'ite parties formed a coalition to create the government. It's going to be a long, hot summer in Iraq as Sunni-Shi'ite tensions play out.
By Jamal al-Badrani, Muhanad Mohammed, and Matt Robinson for Reuters.
A member of the cross-sectarian Iraqiya bloc that won Iraq's March parliamentary election was shot dead on Saturday, the second Iraqiya politician to be killed since the vote, the bloc said.
The victim, Faras al-Jubouri, was a candidate on Iraqiya's list for parliament but did not win a seat in the 325-seat assembly.
A police source, who asked not to be named, said Jubouri was shot dead by gunmen in police uniform overnight in his home near the restive northern city of Mosul.
He said the men searched several homes in Jubouri's village saying they were looking for mortars. On entering Jubouri's home, "they tied up his brother and when he came downstairs they opened fire and killed him," he said.
Iraqiya said Jubouri's killing was political.
On May 24, gunmen killed elected candidate Bashar Mohammed Hamid al-Aqidi, also in Mosul, prompting complaints from Iraqiya that the bloc was being targeted in a campaign of violence since narrowly winning the March 7 election.
"Iraqiya was targeted before the election, and the attacks are continuing," senior Iraqiya official Intisar Allawi told Reuters.
"We don't know who we will lose next. We call on the government to provide protection for winning candidates."
The Supreme Court on June 1 certified the results of the election, affirming Iraqiya's narrow victory. But Iraq is still without a government, fuelling tensions.
Iraqiya is led by former Prime Minister Iyad Allawi and was heavily backed by voters from Iraq's Sunni minority.
The alliance fell short of a majority, and the main Shi'ite blocs of incumbent Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and anti-U.S. cleric Moqtada al-Sadr are negotiating to form a coalition.
Posted on 06/07/2010 2:38 AM by Artemis Gordon Glidden
Monday, 7 June 2010
Britons link Islam with extremism, says survey
From the BBC
Most people in the UK associate Islam with extremism and the repression of women, a survey has suggested.
The online YouGov poll was conducted for moderate Muslim organization the Exploring Islam Foundation.
Some 58% of those surveyed said they linked Islam with extremism. Asked if Muslims had a positive impact on British society, four out of 10 disagreed with the statement while seven out of 10 said the religion encouraged the repression of women. Half linked Islam with terrorism, just 13% thought it was based on peace and 6% associated it with justice.
BBC home editor Mark Easton says the survey, conducted by YouGov for the foundation, paints a negative picture of British attitudes to Islam.
The foundation has been established to challenge what it calls "damaging stereotypes" and misconceptions about the religion. It represents part of an international liberal Islamic movement that has developed to challenge negative views among non-Muslims and counter those Muslims who claim Western cultural values are a threat.
Posted on 06/07/2010 3:19 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Monday, 7 June 2010
Adelman on the Rutherford Reader Controversy
The Rutherford Reader is a family-owned, family-operated weekly publication that has been in business since August 3, 2000. The Reader, as it is known, is based out of Murfreesboro, TN a city of just over 100,000 people, which is part of the Nashville, TN. metropolitan area. It is a free weekly newspaper published by Pete Doughtie.
Since The Reader is a free weekly paper they often publish articles from other sources, and lately many of my articles have been featured on the front page each week with permission.
The paper is circulated by Distributech throughout the Rutherford County, TN area to various businesses. One of the locations where Distributech has newspaper racks is Kroger, the national grocery chain.
On Monday, May 10 Pete Doughtie received a phone call from Distributech representative, Rodney Barton, informing him that as of Friday, May 14, that they were no longer going to allow The Reader to use their racks.
When Doughtie asked for what reason, Barton’s reply was “because of the hate speech stories you print about Muslims and Islam.” At that point, Barton was asked to show Doughtie one issue containing hate speech and Barton ignored the request.
While attempting to track down the source of this accusation of hate speech, Pete Doughtie discovered that one individual had made a complaint. Doughtie has yet to find out if the original complaint was made to the Kroger or Distributech. Apparently a threat of boycott was also made to a local Kentucky Fried Chicken, who also pulled the paper after having The Reader in their rack for six years.
Mr. Doughtie contacted Kroger offering them the opportunity to comment on this situation. After a brief conversation with their spokesperson, Melissa Eads, Kroger’s made the following statement:
“The free publication rack at Kroger is managed by a third party, Distributech. It was brought to their attention that the Rutherford Reader contained hateful content. After they reviewed several issues of The Reader, they determined to no longer distribute the publication. We support them in this decision as neither of us support hate rhetoric of any kind.”
While checking distribution drops in Smyrna this past week, Doughtie was told by the greeter for the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce that instructions from the office in Murfreesboro was that The Reader could no longer be placed on their counter as well. The name being used by the individual who has been contacting The Reader’s customers is Anthony Mijares.
I obtained a copy of an email, sent by this same individual to a local store in Smyrna TN:
“I reside in Smyrna Tennessee, within Rutherford County.
You distribute a local "newspaper " in your stores, titled the Rutherford Reader.
Please be aware, that The Reader contains hate speech against religion.
As of this week, the Kroger Grocery chain, and the Kentucky Fried Chicken chain, has banned The Reader from all of their stores.
Recent Reader editions include these statements:
Islam is evil, dehumanizing, defiling.
Muslim immigration should be halted.
Islam is incompatible with the U.S. Constitution.
Recent Reader front-page headlines read:
World's most dangerous Islamist in Pennsylvania.
Secretary Clinton helps Islamist terror supporter enter U.S.
Spitting in the face of everyone murdered on 9/11.
Rutherford County has Kurds, Egyptians, Jordanians, etc.,
who will be offended at seeing that paper in your stores.
They might also assume that you agree with that paper.
Please, stop distributing The Reader in your stores.
Please acknowledge your receipt of this email.
Please do not forward to this email to Mr.Doughtie;
he publishes photographs of his perceived enemies.
I asked Doughtie if the above statements were ever printed in his paper and he told me the following,
“I'd have to go out and look up my past columns. “Islam is evil, dehumanizing, defiling?" I don't recall using that. Dehumanizing could have been in something describing the treatment of women. ‘Halting immigration of Muslims and illegals’ I'd be capable of. Sharia not being compatible with the U.S. Constitution you bet, not Islam.”
Regardless, Mr. Doughtie has asked time and again for anyone from Kroger and Distributech to give him even one instance of “hate speech”. He is still waiting to be given an example. It appears to me that Anthony Mijares doesn’t like anything that is written about Islam or Muslims that portrays them in a bad light. Does he know what an editorial is?
What bothers me here is the way this whole situation has unfolded. Yes, Kroger, KFC and any other business have the right to carry whatever product they choose. This does not break any laws. However, I find it a bit unusual that a company the size of Kroger would make such a decision after only one complaint. We are talking about a newspaper here, not corn flakes. Newspapers print things daily with their own slant and agenda. This is why some people read the New York Times and others don’t. I have yet to see a paper where after reading just one story I couldn’t figure out if the paper leaned left or right. Is Kroger going to stop carrying each and every paper that has a particular slant or that might disagree with their views?
Is Kroger actually concerned that if they lose the business of this one individual or for that matter as Anthony Mijares stated in his email the business of “Kurds, Egyptians, Jordanians, etc.” it will outweigh the business of those that read the Rutherford Reader? The Reader has an online subscription base of over 43,000 people and has been receiving hundreds of letter of support. And what of The Reader’s rights such as being able to sue all parties for defamation?
I contacted the Kroger spokesperson Melissa Eads with the hopes of hearing Kroger’s position on the matter. I used a phone number that was given to me by Pete Doughtie. It was not only the same number he has used to contact her but also the number his paper had published just a few weeks ago. I left Eads a message and received a call back from a different number and a woman told me that “I had the wrong number”, when I apologized and checked the number she was insistent on knowing who I write for and what I was writing about. Funny, since I supposedly had the wrong number.
The bottom line is this, political correctness is rearing its ugly head once again, and fundamental rights of free speech are the casualties. Have we now reached the point that nothing negative can be printed against Islam either, even when it’s the truth? I thought only pictures of Mohammed were “offensive”.
When corporations both large and small start letting one individual dictate what all of us can read, we might as well be living under Communist rule and forget being able to get the truth because that just went out the window when political correctness came in. Kroger, KFC and anyone else who stops carrying newspapers based on whether someone’s feeling might be hurt is setting a dangerous precedent of censorship that will affect us all.
According to the Kroger website they have grocery stores nationwide operating under 29 different names along with 4 jewelry store chains and one financial service. I wonder what they would do if each and every one who reads this were to demand they stop carrying a newspaper that they don’t agree with or they will start shopping elsewhere. Hell, the Kroger near me had several newspapers this week calling Israel the aggressor over the Aid to Gaza Flotilla, I think I’ll demand that stop carrying all those papers since it was hate speech against Israel.
Posted on 06/07/2010 7:38 AM by Rebecca Bynum
Monday, 7 June 2010
It is alarming to read in the BBC report linked by Esmerelda that Britons are "negative" about Islam. Fortunately there are plans to put this right. From the report:
The Exploring Islam Foundation hopes to challenge the negative views of the religion with its Inspired By Muhammad project.
It will feature posters of Muslim professionals, displayed in central London locations such as bus stops and tube stations, alongside messages emphasising the ways in which Muslims balance religious tradition with contemporary human rights and social responsibility.
I think religious tradition would be weighed in the balance and found wanting, but enough of this negativity - let's explore Islam:
Society’s wellbeing was paramount to Muhammad who taught that all humans were entitled to the same rights and privileges. "People are as equal as the teeth of a comb" he said, and he practised what he preached......
The Quran states that men and women were created to be equal parts of a pair. Muhammad said that the rights of women are sacred and that they are the “twin halves of men”. Considering women in Britain received the right to vote, inherit and own property thirteen centuries later, Muhammad’s campaigns were both radical and revolutionary.....
Muhammad emphasised the Quranic decree of treating the earth as a trust, and humankind its guardians. Likening our planet to a sacred place of prayer, "All of the earth has been made to me as a mosque," ...
Ooops, went a bit too far there - we don't want any negative stuff to frighten the horses. More exploring here, including a cute picture of a kitten. Think happy thoughts.
Posted on 06/07/2010 7:58 AM by Mary Jackson
Monday, 7 June 2010
And Don't Forget The DVD Stores, And The Mercedes Cars They Smuggle In
Danish reporter Steffen Jensen Goes To Gaza To Look For The Humanitarian Crisis
Judging from the media, the situation in Gaza is desperate, everything is about to collapse, and the community is on the brink or at the level of a third world country.
The Palestinian community's immediate downfall has been prophesied numerous times in the media. People have nothing to eat, we sometimes know. The UN must from time to time to stop food distribution, either because their stocks are running low, or because they can not get diesel for their trucks, and therefore can not carry food in. And so on.
Yesterday I drove into the Gaza Strip. I don't do this as often as before [because it takes much longer to get through the checkpoints now.]
This time, I had expected to see real suffering, because with all the fuss in recent days about bringing tons of humanitarian relief in - so much that people actually sacrificed their lives for it - there certainly had to really be a deep, desperate situation in the Gaza Strip. No food. Long queues in front of UN food stocks. Hungry children with food bowls.
But this was not the picture that greeted me.
When I yesterday morning drove through Gaza City, I was immediately surprised that there are almost as many traffic jams as there always has been. Is there not a shortage of fuel? Apparently not. Gasoline is not even rationed.
Many shops were closed yesterday, Hamas has declared a general strike in protest against Israel's brutal and deadly attack on the Turkish flotilla with pro-Palestinian activists on board. So it was difficult to estimate how many products were on the shelves. Therefore I went over to the Shati refugee camp, also known as Beach Camp. Here is one of Gaza's many vegetable markets that sell much more than just fruits and vegetables.
I will not say whether, in better times has been a larger product range than there was yesterday. But there was certainly no shortage of vegetables, fruits or any other ordinary, basic foods. Tomatoes, cucumbers, corn, watermelons, potatoes - mountains of these items in the many stalls.
I must admit I was a little surprised. Because when I call down here to my Palestinian friends, they tell me about all the problems and deficiencies, so I expected that the crisis was a little more clear.
And the first woman we interviewed in the market confirms this strange, contradictory, negative mindset:
"We have nothing," she said. We need everything! Food, drinks ... everything! "
It disturbed her not at least that she stood between the mountains of vegetables, fruit, eggs, poultry and fish, while she spun this doomsday scenario.
Yousuf al-Assad Yazgy owns a fruit and vegetable outlet here in the market.
All his fruit is imported from Israel.
"Not all fruit and all vegetables come from Israel. Ours does. They come from Israel. But in the Gaza Strip there is not very much fruit cultivated. Mostly tomatoes, potatoes and vegetables. So here with me are the vegetables and watermelon were from Gaza. All the fruit comes across the border from Israel," he explains, but also says that there can be long periods when the border is closed, and which therefore fruit does not come in.
On the way out of the Shati camp we stop at a small grocery store. Not any fancy, expensive business. Just a small, humble local store. The proprietor Sun Mohammed Abu Nada says they would not be able to do business if it were not for contraband goods from Egypt.
He takes us on a brief tour of the shelves and shows everything that comes from Egypt. It turns out to be much more than half of the goods. 75-80 per cent. I would estimate. Several other products - including long-life UHT milk - comes from Israel, but is also smuggled through tunnels from Egypt.
The products are more expensive, he says. Many people cannot afford to buy them, or only to buy certain things sometimes. But all the while that even such a small, poor-looking grocery store on the outskirts of a refugee camp still has so many relatively expensive smuggled goods on the shelves shows nevertheless that many of the customers at least be able to afford to buy them. Otherwise, the merchant of course could not even afford to invest in unsold inventory.
This story I have written to postulate that there are problems in the Gaza Strip, because that would be untrue. There are problems. Many problems indeed. But it is not lack of food, which primarily concern people down here. The biggest problem is the lack of jobs and a sustainable domestic economy.
Posted on 06/07/2010 8:41 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 7 June 2010
Charles Krauthammer On Israel's Checkpoint-At-Sea
Those troublesome Jews
The world is outraged at Israel's blockade of Gaza. Turkey denounces its illegality, inhumanity, barbarity, etc. The usual U.N. suspects, Third World and European, join in. The Obama administration dithers.
But as Leslie Gelb, former president of the Council on Foreign Relations, writes, the blockade is not just perfectly rational, it is perfectly legal. Gaza under Hamas is a self-declared enemy of Israel--a declaration backed up by more than 4,000 rockets fired at Israeli civilian territory. Yet having pledged itself to unceasing belligerency, Hamas claims victimhood when Israel imposes a blockade to prevent Hamas from arming itself with still more rockets.
In World War II, with full international legality, the United States blockaded Germany and Japan. And during the October 1962 missile crisis, we blockaded ("quarantined") Cuba. Arms-bearing Russian ships headed to Cuba turned back because the Soviets knew that the U.S. Navy would either board them or sink them. Yet Israel is accused of international criminality for doing precisely what John Kennedy did: impose a naval blockade to prevent a hostile state from acquiring lethal weaponry.
Oh, but weren't the Gaza-bound ships on a mission of humanitarian relief? No. Otherwise they would have accepted Israel's offer to bring their supplies to an Israeli port, be inspected for military materiel and have the rest trucked by Israel into Gaza--as every week 10,000 tons of food, medicine and other humanitarian supplies are sent by Israel to Gaza.
Why was the offer refused? Because, as organizer Greta Berlin admitted, the flotilla was not about humanitarian relief but about breaking the blockade, i.e., ending Israel's inspection regime, which would mean unlimited shipping into Gaza and thus the unlimited arming of Hamas.
Israel has already twice intercepted ships laden with Iranian arms destined for Hezbollah and Gaza. What country would allow that?
But even more important, why did Israel even have to resort to blockade? Because, blockade is Israel's fallback as the world systematically de-legitimizes its traditional ways of defending itself--forward and active defense.
(1) Forward defense: As a small, densely populated country surrounded by hostile states, Israel had, for its first half-century, adopted forward defense--fighting wars on enemy territory (such as the Sinai and Golan Heights) rather than its own.
Where possible (Sinai, for example) Israel has traded territory for peace. But where peace offers were refused, Israel retained the territory as a protective buffer zone. Thus Israel retained a small strip of southern Lebanon to protect the villages of northern Israel. And it took many losses in Gaza, rather than expose Israeli border towns to Palestinian terror attacks. It is for the same reason America wages a grinding war in Afghanistan: You fight them there, so you don't have to fight them here.
But under overwhelming outside pressure, Israel gave it up. The Israelis were told the occupations were not just illegal but at the root of the anti-Israel insurgencies--and therefore withdrawal, by removing the cause, would bring peace.
Land for peace. Remember? Well, during the past decade, Israel gave the land--evacuating South Lebanon in 2000 and Gaza in 2005. What did it get? An intensification of belligerency, heavy militarization of the enemy side, multiple kidnappings, cross-border attacks and, from Gaza, years of unrelenting rocket attack.
(2) Active defense: Israel then had to switch to active defense--military action to disrupt, dismantle and defeat (to borrow President Obama's description of our campaign against the Taliban and al-Qaeda) the newly armed terrorist mini-states established in southern Lebanon and Gaza after Israel withdrew.
The result? The Lebanon war of 2006 and Gaza operation of 2008-09. They were met with yet another avalanche of opprobrium and calumny by the same international community that had demanded the land-for-peace Israeli withdrawals in the first place. Worse, the U.N. Goldstone report, which essentially criminalized Israel's defensive operation in Gaza while whitewashing the casus belli--the preceding and unprovoked Hamas rocket war--effectively de-legitimized any active Israeli defense against its self-declared terror enemies.
(3) Passive defense: Without forward or active defense, Israel is left with but the most passive and benign of all defenses--a blockade to simply prevent enemy rearmament. Yet, as we speak, this too is headed for international de-legitimation. Even the United States is now moving toward having it abolished.
But, if none of these is permissible, what's left?
Ah, but that's the point. It's the point understood by the blockade-busting flotilla of useful idiots and terror sympathizers, by the Turkish front organization that funded it, by the automatic anti-Israel Third World chorus at the United Nations, and by the supine Europeans who've had quite enough of the Jewish problem.
What's left? Nothing. The whole point of this relentless international campaign is to deprive Israel of any legitimate form of self-defense. Why, just last week, the Obama administration joined the jackals, and reversed four decades of U.S. practice, by signing onto a consensus document that singles out Israel's possession of nuclear weapons--thus de-legitimizing Israel's very last line of defense: deterrence.
The world is tired of these troublesome Jews, 6 million--that number again--hard by the Mediterranean, refusing every invitation to national suicide. For which they are relentlessly demonized, ghettoized and constrained from defending themselves, even as the more committed anti-Zionists--Iranian in particular--openly prepare a more final solution.
Posted on 06/07/2010 12:40 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 7 June 2010
Helen Thomas retires
...probably to spend her retirement muttering about the "vast Jewish conspiracy" that brought about her downfall. From AP:
Longtime Washington journalist Helen Thomas abruptly retired Monday as a columnist for Hearst News Service following remarks she made about Israel that were denounced by the White House and her press corps colleagues.
Hearst announced her retirement, effective immediately, shortly after White House press secretary Robert Gibbs called her remarks "offensive and reprehensible."
Posted on 06/07/2010 12:37 PM by Artemis Gordon Glidden
Monday, 7 June 2010
Our Dhimmi Leaders
MEMRI - Flotilla "We Felt Like We Were Going on an Islamic Conquest or Raid"
The leaders, political, religious, civic, community, the lot, and the media who ignore all this, and that is all of them, bar a few, are all culpable.
They are complicit in the war (jihad) against Israel and "the Jews" and are in fact collaborating with "Islamic Shari'ah" * and are in turn facillitating the war (jihad) against their own people, against themselves.
These leaders are like collective reverse Moses' leading their people into slavery, into submission, little by little, into submission to "Islamic Shar'ia."
The Two Kinds of Dhimmis by Bill Warner
Extract: "In effect, the dhimmi is halfway between freedom and slavery, a semi-slave."
The leaders should instead be seeking keep their flocks free and helping those who are struggling to remain free, succeed in so remaining, even though most don't fully appreciate the significance of the assault on everyone's freedom by Islam. These leaders should be helping those who are not free find their promised land, their freedom.
Freedom is not the freedom to submit to "Islamic Shari'ah" or die, as Islam would have it.
That is how "Islamic Shari'ah" "law" defines freedom.
PA TV broadcast kids singing anti-Israel war song to terrorist who aided suicide bomber
Those who ignore what the leaders of Islam say day in and day out are twits, dangerous twits, or much worse, they are proponents of the jihad themselves.
These leaders are in effect aiding and abetting in the commission of treason. Some may be commiting treason themselves.
* "Islamic Shari'ah." The bang up to date proclamation of the jihad intention by Islam, is there, accepted in the United Nations as large as life, proclaimed literally from the rooftops, but do you ever seen it mentioned?
It declares Islam's intention, Islam calling, Islam's mission;
To Conquer and Rule the World and all "Mankind" and not rest for one minute until everything and everybody is ruled "in accordance with the Islamic Shari'ah."
This intent is thinly disguised, however, in legal camouflage, in legalese.
This mission is the same it has been since the establishment of Islam 14 centuries ago.
It is pathetic but it is lethal. It is evil.
The methodolgy which Islam has developed in exquisite detail in order to fulfill the mission is called jihad.
The Islamic "Declaration on Human Rights" is actually a Declaration of Jihad, it is an "invitation" to Islam but does not state the "or else" that is implicit in all such Islamic "invitations."
Adopted and Issued at the Nineteenth Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers in Cairo on 5 August 1990. The Member States of the Organization of the Islamic Conference,
Reaffirming the civilizing and historical role of the Islamic Ummah which God made the best nation that has given mankind a universal and well-balanced civilization in which harmony is established between this life and the hereafter and knowledge is combined with faith; and the role that this Ummah should play to guide a humanity confused by competing trends and ideologies and to provide solutions to the chronic problems of this materialistic civilization.
Wishing to contribute to the efforts of mankind to assert human rights, to protect man from exploitation and persecution, and to affirm his freedom and right to a dignified life in accordance with the Islamic Shari’ah
Article 24 ?All the rights and freedoms stipulated in this Declaration are subject to the Islamic Shari'ah.
Article 25 ?The Islamic Shari'ah is the only source of reference for the explanation or clarification to any of the articles of this Declaration.
Read the whole Declaration.
This Declaration was condoned and accepted by the UN in 1997 (Mary Robinson, recipient last year of a Presidential Medal of Freedom Award from President Obama, was in charge at the time - I suppose "diversity" would cover it - or, rather perhaps, blind, even willful, ignorance) on the basis of the need for "a greater need for an understanding of Islam."
Well "submit or die" is the proposition when one cuts through all the detail. Now that is easy to understand and fulfills the need, the "greater need for an understanding of Islam."
There it is.
The indefatigible David Littman provides details of how the United Nations came to accept this Islamic "Declaration on Human Rights" and the implications:
JANUARY 19, 2003 2:00 P.M.
Human Rights and Human Wrongs
Sharia can’t be an exception to international human-rights norms.
Posted on 06/07/2010 1:03 PM by The Law
Monday, 7 June 2010
Grothendieck Prepares His Wife For Her TOEFL Exam
From an article on the mathematician Alexander Grothendieck:
"Before Grothendieck and Mireille [his much older wife] visited Harvard for the first time in 1958, he gave her one of his favorite novels so that she could improve her rather weak knowledge of English. The novel was Moby Dick."
Posted on 06/07/2010 2:01 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 7 June 2010
National Banana: Sands of Passion
Posted on 06/07/2010 2:28 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Monday, 7 June 2010
In Roman Pharmacies, Viagra Is Bought As Candy By Aging Latin Lovers
Now out of patent protection, the favored brand is Risorgimentos.
Posted on 06/07/2010 5:31 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 7 June 2010
Caroline Glick: In These Great Times (In dieser großen Zeit)
From the Jerusalem Post:
The plain truth about Israel June 7, 2010, 5:28 PM
In other times, Hearst Newspapers White House Correspondent Helen Thomas's demand that the Jews "get the hell out of Palestine," and go back to Poland, Germany and America would have been front page news in every newspaper in the US the day after the story broke.
In other times, had the dean of the White House Correspondents Association expressed such hatred for the Jews, the White House would have immediately removed her accreditation rather than wait three days to criticize her.
In other times, the White House Correspondents Association would have expelled her.
In other times, her employer - Hearst Newspapers - would have fired her.
But in our times, it took days for anyone other than Jews and conservatives to condemn Thomas's vile statements to Rabbi David Nesenoff. And she was not fired. She was allowed to retire.
Our times are times of Jew hatred. Our times are times where hatred breeds strategic madness. Our times are times when we need to recall basic truths about Israel and the Jewish people. Specifically, we must remember that the US is privileged to count Israel as an ally - whether Americans like Jews and our state or hate us.
This week, Anthony Cordesman from respected Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies joined the bandwagon of Israel bashers. In an article titled, "Israel as a Strategic Liability?"
Cordesman asserted that Israel "is a tertiary US strategic interest." And given its alleged insignificance, Israel must "become far more careful about the extent to which it test[s] the limits of US patience and exploits the support of American Jews."
Cordesman argued that Israel is only an asset to the US when it is giving its land away to its neighbors. He called for Israel to constrain its military actions and demanded that Israel "not conduct a high-risk attack on Iran in the face of the clear US 'red light' from both the Bush and Obama administrations."
The fact that Cordesman's article reflects an increasingly popular school of thought in the US is not testimony to its accuracy. Indeed, his arguments are completely wrong.
The plain truth is that Israel is the US's greatest strategic asset in the Middle East. Indeed, given the strategic importance of the Middle East to the US national security, Israel is arguably the US's greatest strategic asset outside the US military.
Cordesman allows that "Israel is a democracy that shares virtually all of the same values as the United States." But he fails to recognize the strategic implications of that statement. As a democracy, unlike every Arab state, the US does not need to worry a change in leadership in Jerusalem will cause Israel to abandon its alliance with the US. This of course is what happened in Iran - which until 1979, was the US's most important ally in the Persian Gulf. As Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak ages, the US faces the prospect of a post-Mubarak Egypt led by the Muslim Brotherhood similarly abandoning its alliance with America.
The fact that the US and Israel share the same foundational values also guarantees that the alliance is stable. No government in Jerusalem will ever sway the Israeli people away from America as has happened in Turkey since the Islamist Erdogan government took office in 2002.
Cordesman grudgingly allowed that Israel provides intelligence to the US. But he refused to acknowledge how important Israel's intelligence has been for the US. Since Sept. 11, 2001, US military and intelligence officials have repeatedly admitted that Israeli intelligence has been worth its weight in gold for US security operations in the region and around the world.
Cordesman also noted that Israeli technology has contributed to US defense, but again, he undervalued its significance. The very fact that pilotless aircraft - first developed by Israel - are the lead force in the US campaign in Afghanistan and Pakistan gives lie to his tepid admission of Israel's technological contribution to US security.
Like many on the Left, Cordesman ignored the fact that Israel's enemies are the US's enemies. But his failure to note that the same people who call for Israel to be destroyed also call for the US to be destroyed does not make this fact any less true. And since the US and Israel share the same foes, when Israel is called on to fight its enemies, its successes redound to the US's benefit.
In many ways, Israel - which has never asked the US to fight its wars -- has been the catalyst for the US's greatest triumphs. It was the Mossad that smuggled out Nikita Khrushchev's secret speech acknowledging Stalin's crimes at the Twentieth Communist Party Conference in 1956. The publication of Khrushchev's speech in the West was the first turning point in the Cold War.
So too, Israel's June 1982 destruction of Syria's Soviet-made anti-aircraft batteries and the Syrian air force was the first clear demonstration of the absolute superiority of US military technology over Soviet military technology. Many have argued that it was this Israeli demonstration of Soviet technological inferiority that convinced the Reagan administration it was possible to win the Cold War.
Beyond politics and ideology, beyond friendship and values, the US has three permanent national security interests in the Middle East.
• Ensuring the smooth flow of affordable petroleum products from the region.
• Preventing the most radical regimes, sub-state and non-state actors from acquiring the means to cause catastrophic harm.
• Maintaining its capacity to project its power in the region.
A strong Israel is the best guarantor of all of these interests. Indeed, the stronger Israel is, the more secure these primary American interests are. Three permanent and unique aspects to Israel's regional position dictate this state of affairs.
First, as the first target of the most radical regimes and radical sub-state actors in the region, Israel has a permanent, existential interest in preventing these regimes and sub-state actors from acquiring the means to cause catastrophic harm.
Israel's 1981 airstrike that destroyed Iraq's Osirak nuclear reactor prevented Iraq from acquiring nuclear weapons. Despite US condemnation at the time, the US later acknowledged that the strike was a necessary precondition to the success of Operation Desert Storm ten years later. As Richard Cheney has noted, if Iraq had been a nuclear power in 1991, the US would have been hard pressed to eject Saddam Hussein's army from Kuwait and so block his regime from asserting control over oil supplies in the Persian Gulf.
Second, Israel is a non-expansionist state and its neighbors know it. In its 62 year history, Israel has only controlled territory vital for its national security and territory that was legally allotted to it in the 1922 League of Nations Mandate which has never been abrogated or superseded.
Israel's strength, which it has used only in self-defense, is inherently non-threatening. Far from destabilizing the region, a strong Israel stabilizes the Middle East by deterring the most radical actors from attacking.
In 1970, Israel blocked Syria's bid to use the PLO to overthrow the Hashemite regime in Jordan. Israel's threat to attack Syria not only saved the Hashemites then, it has deterred Syria from attempting to overthrow the Jordanian regime ever since.
Similarly, Israel's neighbors understand that its purported nuclear arsenal is a weapon of national survival and hence they view it as non-threatening. This is the reason Israel's alleged nuclear arsenal has never spurred a regional nuclear arms race.
In stark contrast, if Iran acquires nuclear weapons, a regional nuclear arms race will ensue immediately. Indeed, it has already begun. Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and other states have all signed contracts to develop nuclear installations.
Although they will never admit it, Israel's non-radical neighbors feel more secure when Israel is strong. On the other hand, the region's most radical regimes and non-state actors will always seek to emasculate Israel.
Finally, since as the Jewish state Israel is the regional bogeyman, no Arab state will agree to form an open alliance with it. Hence, Israel will never be in a position to join forces with another nation against a third nation.
In contrast, the Egyptian-Syrian United Arab Republic of the 1960s was formed to attack Israel. Today, the Syrian-Iranian-Turkish alliance is an inherently aggressive alliance against Israel and the non-radical Arab states in the region. Recognizing the stabilizing force of a strong Israel, the moderate states of the region prefer for Israel to remain strong.
From the US's perspective, far from impairing its alliance-making capabilities in the region, by providing military assistance to Israel, America isn't just strengthening the most stabilizing force in the region. It is showing all states and non-state actors in the greater Middle East it is trustworthy.
But every time the US seeks to attenuate its ties with Israel, it is viewed as an untrustworthy ally by the nations of the Middle East. US hostility towards Israel causes Israel's neighbors to hedge their bets by distancing themselves from the US lest America abandon them to their neighboring adversaries.
The Obama administration's willingness to effectively back Turkey and Hamas against Israel at the UN Security Council last week forced Vice President Joseph Biden to drop everything and fly to Egypt this week. Watching the US abandon Israel and strengthen the most radical actors in the region, the Egyptians are terrified that they can no longer believe in US security guarantees.
A strong Israel empowers the relatively moderate actors in the region to stand up to the radical actors in the region because they trust Israel to keep the radicals in check. When Israel is weakened the radical forces are emboldened. Regional stability is thrown asunder. Wars become more likely. Attacks on oil resources increase. The most radical sub-state actors and regimes are encouraged to strike.
Cordesman claims that Israel only advances US strategic interest when it works towards the creation of a Palestinian state. But this is wrong. To the extent that the two-state solution assumes that Israel must contract itself to within the indefensible 1949 ceasefire lines and allow a hostile Palestinian state allied with terrorist organizations to take power in the areas it vacates, the two-state solution is predicated on making Israel weak and empowering radicals. In light of this, the two-state solution as presently constituted is antithetical to America's most vital strategic interests in the Middle East.
In our times, when Jew hatred has become acceptable and strategic blindness and madness are presented as nuanced sophistication, it is essential to maintain a firm grip on the truth. And that truth is that love the Jews or hate us, the US's alliance with Israel has been and remains America's most cost-effective national security investment since World War II.
Originally published in The Jerusalem Post.
Posted on 06/07/2010 7:08 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 7 June 2010
A Musical Interlude: A Friend, A Good Friend (Comedian Harmonists)
Posted on 06/07/2010 9:59 PM by Hugh Ftizgerald
Monday, 7 June 2010
Monsignor Luigi Padovese's Muslim Killer Was Perfectly Sane (In Italian)
AsiaNews: «Monsignor Padovese è stato vittima di un omicidio rituale islamico»
L'agenzia del Pontificio Istituto Missioni Estere: dopo averlo decapitato Murat gridò «Allah Akbar»
MILANO - Monsignor Luigi Padovese potrebbe essere stato ucciso nell'ambito di un omicidio rituale islamico. «Nuovi e agghiaccianti particolari» sull'uccisione del presidente dei vescovi cattolici turchi, sono stati rivelati da AsiaNews, agenzia del Pontificio Istituto Missioni Estere, che sostiene la tesi di un «omicidio rituale», dunque inquadrabile nella visione dell'islam fondamentalista [?] e ritiene che alla luce dei fatti siano «da rivedere le dichiarazioni del governo turco e le prime convinzioni espresse dal Vaticano, secondo cui l'uccisione non avrebbe risvolti politici e religiosi, fermo restando che, come ha detto Benedetto XVI nell'aereo in viaggio per Cipro, questo assassinio «non può essere attribuito alla Turchia e ai turchi, e non deve oscurare il dialogo».
LE TESTIMONIANZE - «Testimoni - scrive AsiaNews - affermano di aver sentito il vescovo gridare aiuto. Ma ancora più importante, è che essi hanno sentito le urla di Murat subito dopo l'assassinio». Secondo le fonti citate dall'agenzia, egli è salito sul tetto della casa è ha gridato: «Ho ammazzato il grande satana! Allah Akbar!». «Questo grido - sottolinea Asia News - coincide perfettamente con l'idea della decapitazione, facendo intuire che essa è come un sacrificio rituale contro il male. Ciò mette in relazione l'assassinio con i gruppi ultranazionalisti e apparentemente fondamentalisti islamici che vogliono eliminare i cristiani dalla Turchia». Secondo Asianews, «la presunta insanità del 26enne che da oltre quattro anni viveva a fianco del vescovo è ormai indifendibile». «Sono in pochi a credere allo squilibrio mentale dell'omicida», ha dichiarato da parte sua padre Domenico Bertogli, vicario generale di Anatolia. «La cosa non appare così semplice - ha spiegato il vice di Padovese in un'intervista diffusa dal Servizio Informazioen Religiosa - come si potrebbe pensare. Per questo abbiamo chiesto che si faccia piena luce su un omicidio che non può essere subito archiviato come opera di uno squilibrato. Un clichè che ricalca quello già visto in altri fatti analoghi». Ercan Eris, l'avvocato della Conferenza Episcopale Turca, sostiene che l'omicida non può essere diventato depresso in un giorno e che non esiste nessun rapporto sanitario che lo dichiari tale. Ormai è certo che il giovane è sano di mente. «Non c'è alcun certificato medico - riporta AsiaNews - che attesti la sua invalidità mentale. Negli ultimi tempi egli stesso diceva di essere depresso, ma ormai si pensa che questa fosse tutta una strategia per potersi difendere in seguito».
NUOVA TESI DIFENSIVA - Ercan Eris, l'avvocato della Conferenza Episcopale Turca, sostiene che l'omicida non può essere diventato depresso in un giorno e che non esiste nessun rapporto sanitario che lo dichiari tale. Ormai è certo che il giovane è sano di mente. «Non c'è alcun certificato medico - riporta AsiaNews - che attesti la sua invalidità mentale. Negli ultimi tempi egli stesso diceva di essere depresso, ma ormai si pensa che questa fosse tutta una strategia per potersi difendere in seguito». Secondo voci nella polizia inoltre, sembra che Murat ora stia offrendo una nuova giustificazione del suo gesto: monsignor Padovese sarebbe un omosessuale e lui, Murat, 26 anni, sarebbe la vittima, «costretta a subire abusi». La strategia difensiva dell'omicida è indirizzata cioè a sostenere l'ipotesi di un atto di «legittima difesa». Secondo esperti del mondo turco citati da AsiaNews, l'uccisione di monsignor Padovese mostra un'evoluzione delle organizzazioni dello «Stato profondo»: è la prima volta che essi mirano così in alto.
«TURCHIA, TERRA DI MARTIRIO» - E Ruggero Franceschini, vescovo di Smirne, che ha presieduto i funerali di monsignor Padovese oggi a Iskanderun lo ha definito «un martire». Nel corso dell'omelia, monsignor Franceschini ha affermato: «La tragica notizia della morte violenta di Monsignor Luigi Padovese ci ha lasciati sgomenti, incapaci di capire come potesse essere accaduta una cosa così orribile, soprattutto nei confronti di un Uomo di Chiesa, un Vescovo molto amico dei Turchi e della Turchia. Questa terra si conferma così, ancora una volta, luogo di martirio anche per chi la amava tanto».
CASTELLI: «IL CORAGGIO DELLA VERITA'» - Non mancano le reazioni dal mondo politico alle dichiarazioni dell'agenzia. Il viceministro della Lega Nord, Roberto Castelli sottolinea come AsiaNews sia la sola fonte di informazione ad avere «il coraggio di dire la verità» sulla morte di monsignor Padovese. «Invito a leggere attentamente il rapporto della agenzia Asianews, l'agenzia del Pontificio Istituto Missioni Estere, sulla uccisione del vescovo cattolico, monsignor Padovese. La ringrazio perché è l'unica voce che ha il coraggio di dire la verità», afferma Castelli.
Posted on 06/07/2010 11:25 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 7 June 2010
More On Liès Hebbadj And His State-Supported Polygamy
Liès Hebbadj, le 26 avril à Nantes, avait déclaré que "les maîtresses ne sont pas interdites par l'islam".
Lies Hebbadj et sa compagne, la Nantaise verbalisée pour conduite avec un niqab à Nantes, sont entendus depuis lundi matin par la section financière de la police judiciaire de Nantes, affirme Ouest-France. "Je viens de voir ma cliente, j'ai vraiment du mal à comprendre... Maintenant si on conteste une contravention on se retrouve en garde à vue ?" s'interroge, lundi matin, Me Jean-Michel Pollono, avocat de la jeune femme verbalisée qui se fait appeler "Anne".
"M. Hebbadj, son amant, est aussi en garde à vue, est-ce que ma cliente ne serait pas un dommage collatéral", a-t-il questionné avant de considérer qu'"il est injuste de s'en prendre" à elle.
Une perquisition a eu lieu au domicile de Lies Hebbadj, à Rezé, au sud de Nantes, dans la matinée. Ce dernier et sa compagne étaient convoqués ce matin à la police judiciaire dans le cadre de l'enquête qui avait été ouverte par le parquet de Nantes, à la demande de la préfecture de la Loire-Atlantique, pour faire la lumière sur "une suspicion de relations polygames" de Lies Hebbadj et des "interrogations sur la régularité des aides sociales dont bénéficieraient plusieurs personnes de sexe féminin qui seraient en relation" avec lui.
Le commerçant, qui vit à Rezé, près de Nantes, a été placé sous le feu des projecteurs en plein débat sur l'interdiction du voile intégral, quand l'une de ses concubines a décidé de contester une contravention pour avoir conduit alors qu'elle portait un niqab.
Posted on 06/07/2010 11:39 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald