Latest Analysis and Commentary

Palestinians: The Difference between Us and Them

by Bassam Tawil  •  August 4, 2015 at 5:00 am

  • We Palestinians have failed to educate our people on the principles of tolerance and peace. Instead, we condone and applaud terrorism, especially when it is directed against Jews. We want the world to condemn terrorism only when it claims the lives of Palestinians.

  • Abbas's ambiguous, half-hearted condemnations of attacks by Palestinians against Israelis are only intended for public consumption and are primarily aimed at appeasing Western donors so that they will continue channeling funds to the Palestinian Authority. In addition, his condemnations seek to blame Israel for Palestinian terror attacks.

  • Netanyahu's strong and clear condemnation left me and other Palestinians wondering when was the last time we heard similar statements from our leaders. I cannot remember Abbas or any other Palestinian leader ever expressing shock and outrage over the killing of a Jew in a Palestinian terror attack, nor the last time a Palestinian official visited the Israeli victims of a Palestinian terror attack.

  • Each time Abbas reluctantly condemns a Palestinian terror attack, he faces a wave of criticism from many Palestinians. Unlike the Israeli public, many Palestinians often rush to justify, and even welcome, terror attacks against Jews. Has there ever been a Palestinian activist who dared to hold a rally in a Palestinian city to condemn suicide bombings or the murder of an entire Jewish family? The Israeli president has good reason to feel ashamed for the murder of the baby. But when will we Palestinians ever have a sense of shame over the way we react to the murder of Jews?

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin visits 4-year-old Ahmed Dawabsha in hospital on July 31. Dawabsha was badly burned in an arson attack on his house in the village of Duma, which killed his baby brother and also injured his parents. (Image source: Mark Neyman/Israel Government Press Office)

I cannot count the number of times that I heard from Israeli Jews the phrases "I'm ashamed" and "I'm sorry" in response to the horrific crime that claimed the life of Palestinian toddler Ali Dawabsha in the West Bank village of Duma last week.

The strong response of the Israeli public and leaders to the arson attack is, truthfully, somewhat comforting. The wall-to-wall Israeli condemnation of this crime has left me and other Palestinians not only ashamed, but also embarrassed -- because this is not how we Palestinians have been reacting to terror attacks against Jews -- even the despicable murder of Jewish children.

Our response has, in fact, brought feelings of disgrace and dishonor. While the Israeli prime minister, president and other officials were quick strongly to condemn the murder of Dawabsha, our leaders rarely denounce terror attacks against Jews. And when a Palestinian leader such as Mahmoud Abbas does issue a condemnation, it is often vague and equivocal.

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Turkey: ISIS's Hostage Again

by Burak Bekdil  •  August 4, 2015 at 4:00 am

  • When the Islamic State took hostage 49 Turks at the Mosul consulate, it took hostage the entire country. The jihadists still hold Turkey hostage.

  • Interestingly, the Islamic State has so far mainly targeted President Erdogan's ideological/political foes: Alevis in the Reyhanli bombing, and the Kurdish political movement in four separate bomb attacks.

  • Note that it was the Kurdish political movement that on June 7 dashed Erdogan's dreams to introduce an executive presidential system.

  • Erdogan is hostage to the jihadists of his own making.

The scene of the suicide bombing in Suruc, Turkey. An Islamic State suicide bomber murdered 32 people and wounded more than 100 others in a July 20 attack on Kurdish humanitarian activists. (Image source: VOA video screenshot)

In March 2014, Turkey's main opposition social democratic party submitted a parliamentary motion to investigate alleged failings of safety standards at a coalmine in Soma, in western Turkey. The ruling Islamist party's parliamentary majority voted to reject it. Less than two months later the same coalmine exploded, killing more than 300 miners.

In February 2015, an opposition member of parliament, Nazmi Gur, from the pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party (HDP) filed a parliamentary motion, asking for an inquiry into the activities of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (Islamic State, ISIS, IS) inside Turkey. The next day, the motion was rejected by the same government benches, and led Gur to decry the vote as "a sign that the Turkish government still refrains from taking a clear position against ISIS." Half a year later, an IS suicide bomber murdered 32 people in an attack against a pro-Kurdish gathering, in a Turkish town bordering Syria.

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Who Is Destroying the Palestinian Dream?

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  August 3, 2015 at 5:00 am

  • Hamas's totalitarian rule over the Gaza Strip seems to be nearing its end, as the Islamist movement faces increased challenges from various militias in the area. Many Palestinians are worried that Gaza will fall into the hands of Islamic State or Al-Qaeda.

  • "By Allah's will, we will uproot the state of the Jews and you [Hamas] and others will vanish as the Gaza Strip will be ruled by sharia, whether you like it or not." — Spokesman for the Islamic State.

  • In public, Hamas leaders do not admit that their movement is being challenged by Islamic State and Al-Qaeda supporters in Gaza. It is more convenient for them to blame "Israeli occupation" for the violence, on the pretext that only Israel is interested in removing Hamas from power. This claim, however, has proven to be untrue.

  • It is time for the international community to realize that the Palestinian dream of establishing an independent state is being destroyed by none other than the Palestinians themselves.

Palestinians waving Islamic State flags attempt to storm the French Cultural Center in Gaza City, in January 2015. (Image source: ehna tv YouTube screenshot)

The Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, which Palestinians hope will one day become part of a future Palestinian state, is quickly sliding toward anarchy and chaos.

Since its violent takeover of the Gaza Strip in the summer of 2007, Hamas has maintained a tight grip on the area, home to some 1.7 million Palestinians. But now Hamas's totalitarian rule over the Gaza Strip seems to be nearing its end, as the Islamist movement faces increased challenges from various militias and groups in the area.

Some of Hamas's rivals belong to more radical terror groups such as the Islamic State and Al-Qaeda-affiliated militias created by salafi-jihadis inside the Gaza Strip. Others belong to the secular Fatah faction, whose members continue to dream of the day when they will be able to topple the Hamas regime and regain control over the Gaza Strip.

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The Islamic State's Campaign Plan

by Vijeta Uniyal  •  August 3, 2015 at 4:00 am

  • ISIS wants to trigger this final conflict by unleashing attacks on Indian soil. If the U.S. comes to India's aid, ISIS would declare a global Jihad, calling upon a billion Muslims to heed the call.

  • Despite the propaganda onslaught by ISIS, Indian authorities have apparently not yet grasped the true nature of the conflict between ISIS and India that is unfolding before their eyes. As ISIS raises an army among Indian Muslims and publicizes its apocalyptic goals for the Indian subcontinent, some in the Indian establishment still hope to lure the ISIS rank-and-file with government-funded welfare programs.

  • "Accept the fact that this caliphate will survive and prosper until it takes over the entire world and beheads every last person that rebels against Allah. ... This is the bitter truth, swallow it." — The Islamic State.

In 2014, this photo of Muslim ISIS supporters in India's Tamil Nadu state went viral on Twitter.

President Obama might not yet have a strategy to combat the Islamic State (ISIS), but the Islamic State has a strategy. It is, apparently, to bring about the "end of the world." According to a document uncovered by American Media Institute (AMI) and reviewed by U.S. intelligence officials, ISIS is preparing to attack India, in the hope of forcing the U.S. to come to India's aid and get mired in an apocalyptic conflict.

In the document, written in prophetic style and entitled, "A Brief History of the Islamic State Caliphate (ISC), The Caliphate According to the Prophet," ISIS calls upon different jihadist factions operating in Afghanistan and Pakistan to come under its banner. It urges al-Qaeda in the region to submit to the authority of the Islamic empire or "Caliphate" and recognize ISIS as the sole ruler of a billion Muslims across the world.

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Christians Burn While Pope Worries about "Worldly" Matters
Muslim Persecution of Christians, June 2015

by Raymond Ibrahim  •  August 2, 2015 at 5:00 am

  • Although the Egyptian constitution stipulates equality before the law, the judiciary refuses the testimony of Christians against Muslims in courts. Islamic law maintains that the testimony of an "infidel" cannot be accepted against a Muslim.

  • Al Azhar University in Egypt continues to incite Egypt's Muslims against Christians. Most recently, the university was exposed distributing a free booklet dedicated to discrediting Christianity. It is full of direct attacks on Christianity in general and the nation's Coptic Christians in particular. Islam is hailed as the true and superior religion. No mention of violent Islamic conquests is made.

  • More than 200 girls, mostly Christian, remain missing in Nigeria after Boko Haram kidnapped them in 2014. Escapees testify that some were told to slit the throats of Christians and to carry out suicide attacks. Girls who cannot recite the Koran are flogged.

  • The "lawyers" of a Christian man imprisoned in Pakistan on the charge of desecrating the Koran last May are actually working against him. Faisal's lawyers officially canceled the request for bail, previously submitted by other lawyers.

  • Christians and others in the southern Philippines say they fear that legislation meant to create an Islamic sub-state -- legislation meant to appease Islamists -- will only create more extremism against Christians. Critics say it would render the federal government powerless to redress human rights abuses under Islamic law. In some areas, violence has been increasing, including trademark Islamic attacks on churches and nuns.

The Syriac Orthodox Church of St. Ephrem in Mosul, Iraq, before if the captured by the Islamic State (left), and after.

In June, Pope Francis released his first independent encyclical. It merely served to highlight the indifference to the plight of persecuted Christians around the world.

The Pope warned about issues dealing with the environment, but he did not once mention the plight of persecuted Christians -- even though he is well acquainted with it, and even though previous popes mentioned it when Christians were experiencing far less persecution than they are today.

Encyclicals are formal treatises written by popes and sent to bishops around the world. In turn, bishops are meant to disseminate the encyclical's ideas to all the priests and churches in their jurisdiction, so that the pope's thoughts might reach every church-attending Catholic.

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Jihad on Non-Muslim Places of Worship in Turkey

by Uzay Bulut  •  August 2, 2015 at 4:00 am

  • "Peaceful coexistence," it seems, is a concept truly foreign to Islamic supremacists. Many pious Muslims seem to think that if Islam is the only true religion, why should one need the immoral, untrue religions or philosophies that lead people astray?

  • Turkey also has an Alevi community, estimated in the tens of millions, but the number is only approximate. Alevis in Turkey (and Catholics, Protestants and others) are legally "non-existent." And as you cannot conduct a census on a group of people who are legally "non-existent," you just count them as "Sunni Muslims."

  • "As far as the legislation is concerned, worshipping in a building that does not have legal status or calling a building a cem house, church or similar may lead to prosecution." -- Mine Yildirim.

  • One hears that "Islam is a religion of peace." But what many Westerners fail to understand is that this "peace" takes place only after everyone has converted to Islam. No other ideology has enjoyed the luxury of being praised as the "religion of peace" while providing exactly the opposite.

The Hagia Triada Church in Istanbul was recently set aflame by an arsonist.

Once upon a time, Asia Minor, now called Turkey, as well as the rest of the Middle East, was for centuries a real cradle of civilization, where many different religions and cultures flourished. But today these tiny, dwindling communities are not able to enjoy any freedom of religion or conscience.

"Peaceful coexistence," it seems, is a concept truly foreign to Islamic supremacists. It is this missing concept that keeps them in dark ages. They might still go to shopping malls, or use mobile phones, computers and other technological devices, but their minds and souls are trapped in dark ages. Ironically, most of the high technology and science they utilize was invented by the people whose places of worship they like to destroy.

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Police Warn of No-Go Zones in Germany

by Soeren Kern  •  August 1, 2015 at 5:00 am

  • "There are districts where immigrant gangs are taking over entire metro trains for themselves. Native residents and business people are being intimidated and silenced... The reasons for this: the high rate of unemployment, the lack of job prospects for immigrants without qualifications for the German labor market and ethnic tensions among migrants." — Der Spiegel.

  • "Every police commissioner and interior minister will deny it. But of course we know where we can go with the police car....[O]ur colleagues can no longer feel safe there in twos, and have to fear becoming the victim of a crime themselves. We know that these areas exist. Even worse: in these areas, crimes no longer result in charges. They are left to themselves. Only in the worst cases do we in the police learn anything about it. The power of the state is completely out of the picture." — Bernhard Witthaut, Chief Police Commissioner of Germany.

  • "The gangs traffic in heroin and cocaine, run brothels or are active in the contraband smuggling business. The brutality with which they carry out their activities has made them very powerful, the police are afraid of them. The state is passive with respect to these clans, the politicians ignore the phenomenon... This negligence has, over the years, enabled the emergence of a criminal parallel society. This would not have happened if the authorities had acted early and decisively." — Der Spiegel.

  • "When I say that steps must be taken to ensure immigrants comply with rules and regulations, I'm immediately branded as a far right extremist. But order is exactly what is needed." — Volker Mosblech, Duisburg City Councilman.

German police in riot gear, accompanied by armored vehicles and water cannons, charge into a street battle between Kurds and radical Islamists in Hamburg, Oct. 8, 2014. (Image source: N24 video screenshot)

Spiraling levels of violent crime perpetrated by immigrants from the Middle East and the Balkans are turning parts of Duisburg, a key German industrial city, into "areas of lawlessness" — areas that are becoming de facto "no-go" zones for police, according to a confidential police report that was leaked to the German newsmagazine Der Spiegel.

The report, produced by the police headquarters of North Rhine-Westphalia, the most populous state of Germany (and also the state with the largest Muslim population in Germany), warns that the government is losing control over problem neighborhoods and that the ability of police to maintain public order "cannot be guaranteed over the long term."

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The Ayatollah's Plan for Israel and Palestine

by Amir Taheri  •  July 31, 2015 at 10:30 am

  • The book has received approval from Khamenei's office and is thus the most authoritative document regarding his position on the issue.

  • Khamenei makes his position clear from the start: Israel has no right to exist as a state He claims his strategy for the destruction of Israel is not based on anti-Semitism, which he describes as a European phenomenon. His position is based on "well-established Islamic principles."

  • According to Khamenei, Israel, which he labels an "enemy" and "foe," is a special case for three reasons. The first is that it is a loyal "ally of the American Great Satan" and a key element in its "evil scheme" to dominate "the heartland of the Ummah."

  • Khamenei describes Israel as "a cancerous tumor" whose elimination would mean that "the West's hegemony and threats will be discredited" in the Middle East. In its place, he boasts," the hegemony of Iran will be promoted."

  • Khamenei's tears for "the sufferings of Palestinian Muslims" are also unconvincing. To start with, not all Palestinians are Muslims. And, if it were only Muslim sufferers who deserved sympathy, why doesn't he beat his chest about the Burmese Rohingya and the Chechens massacred and enchained by Vladimir Putin, not to mention Muslims daily killed by fellow-Muslims across the globe?

  • In the early days of his mission, the Prophet Muhammad toyed with the idea of making Jerusalem the focal point of prayers for Islam. He soon abandoned the idea and adopted his hometown of Mecca. For that reason, some classical Muslim writers refer to Jerusalem as "the discarded one," like a first wife who is replaced by a new favorite. In the 11th century the Shiite Fatimid Caliph, Al-Hakim even ordered the destruction of Jerusalem.

  • Dozens of maps circulate in the Muslim world, showing the extent of Muslim territories lost to the infidel that must be recovered. These include large parts of Russia and Europe, almost a third of China, the whole of India and parts of the Philippines and Thailand.

Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei (center), is shown meeting in May 2014 with Iran's military chief of staff and the commanders of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps. (Image source: IRNA)

"The flagbearer of Jihad to liberate Jerusalem."

This is how the blurb of "Palestine," a new book, published by Islamic Revolution Editions last week in Tehran, identifies the author.

The author is "Grand Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Husseini Khamenei," the "Supreme Guide" of the Islamic Republic in Iran, a man whose fatwa has been recognized by U.S. President Barack Obama as having the force of law.

Edited by Saeed Solh-Mirzai, the 416-page book has received approval from Khamenei's office and is thus the most authoritative document regarding his position on the issue.

Khamenei makes his position clear from the start: Israel has no right to exist as a state.

He uses three words. One is "nabudi" which means "annihilation". The other is "imha" which means "fading out," and, finally, there is "zaval" meaning "effacement."

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What Turkey Wants in Syria

by Burak Bekdil  •  July 31, 2015 at 5:00 am

  • Turkey says that it, together with the US, wants an IS-free zone in northern Syria. That is fine. But who will fill the vacuum in areas cleared of IS?

  • Turkey simply finds joining the international campaign against the Islamic State an opportunity to install pro-Sunni Islamist rule in areas now controlled by IS.

  • In all reality, Prime Minister Davutoglu wants to replace extreme Islamists with less extreme Islamists. Turkey is trying, with U.S. help, to make Syria an extension of Turkey for Muslim Brotherhood Sunni Islam.

Members of the Free Syrian Army's Al-Tawhid Brigade pose for a photo in Aleppo, in 2012. (Image source: Vice video screenshot)

After several months of reluctant negotiations, Turkey has anxiously decided to join the allied battle against the radical Islamists who fight under the flag of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (or Islamic State, ISIS, IS). Turkish jets bombed IS strongholds inside Syria, and police detained hundreds of IS supporters operating in Turkey, including two leaders. Moreover, Turkish ministers hastily signed a decree that would allow the U.S. military to use the critical Incirlik air base for strikes against IS targets. Incirlik, in southern Turkey near the Syrian border, is close to many IS strongholds and will cut response times for U.S. aircraft, increasing the efficiency of anti-militant operations.

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Hamas's Child Abuse Camps

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  July 30, 2015 at 6:00 pm

  • More than 500 Hamas members of Hamas's armed wing, Ezaddin al-Qassam, are supervising the military training and religious education in the camps to train future jihadis in the war against Israel. Hamas's religious education is aimed at teaching the children about Islam and its sharia laws. They are also being taught that making peace with the "infidels" is prohibited under the teachings of Islam.

  • It is disturbing to see how international and Palestinian human rights organizations, especially those claiming to defend children's rights, are turning a blind eye to this large-scale child abuse by Hamas. These organizations only care about children's rights when there is a way to throw all the blame on Israel.

  • The Palestinian Authority and its president, Mahmoud Abbas, are also poisoning the hearts and minds of their people by constantly inciting them against Israel. These children will never accept the two-state solution that Abbas is talking about. Nor will they ever recognize Israel's right to exist in this part of the world.

  • "Teach your children how to play, how to smile... Build for them an institution...on the love of Palestine and not how to get themselves killed." — Palestinian activist Eyad al-Atal, criticizing Hamas for "depriving an entire generation of Palestinians of their childhood."

Rashed Anwar Abu Diqqa attends one of Gaza's Hamas-run military summer camps. The teenage boy, shown holding an assault rifle, says "I go to the summer camp because it teaches young people lots of useful things. (Image source: MEMRI)

For the third running year, thousands of Palestinian children from the Gaza Strip are receiving military training as part of Hamas's summer camps.

The camps, which are being held under the banner "Vanguards of Liberation," are aimed at preparing children as young as 15 for fighting against Israel. More than 25,000 children have joined this year's Hamas camps, according to Hamas officials in the Gaza Strip.

What is most disturbing about this practice is that the families are not hesitant to send their children to be trained as future jihadis in the war against Israel. On the contrary, many of the families interviewed in the Palestinian media in the past few days said they were proud to see their children being taught how to use various types of weapons.

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Palestinians: A Rare Voice of Sanity

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  July 30, 2015 at 5:00 am

  • While many in the international community and media hold Israel fully responsible for the plight of the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, Dr. Abrash offers a completely different perspective.

  • Referring to widespread corruption under the Palestinian Authority (PA) in the West Bank, the former Palestinian minister reveals that Palestinian academic institutions, including universities and colleges, have become "commercial projects for granting certificates that have no scientific value or content."

  • This is a voice that is rarely given a platform in mainstream media outlets in the West, whose journalists continue to focus almost entirely on stories that reflect negatively on Israel. Western journalists based in the Middle East tend to ignore Palestinians who are critical of the PA or Hamas, because such criticism does not fit the narrative according to which Israel is solely responsible for all the bad things that happen to the Palestinians.

  • Abrash's criticism of Hamas and the PA -- whom he openly holds responsible for the suffering of their people -- actually reflects the widespread sentiment among Palestinians. Over the past few years, a growing number of Palestinians have come to realize that their leaders have failed them again and again and are now aware that both Hamas and the PA, as corrupt as ever, are hindering efforts to rebuild the Gaza Strip.

J'Accuse. Dr. Ibrahim Abrash, a former Palestinian Minister of Culture (left), accuses Palestinian Authority and Hamas officials of corruption, extortion, opportunism and hypocrisy. Pictured in the middle is PA President Mahmoud Abbas, and at right Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh.

It is almost unheard of for a prominent Palestinian figure to hold the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas equally responsible for corruption and abuse of power.

Dr. Ibrahim Abrash, a former Palestinian Minister of Culture from the Gaza Strip, recently surprised many Palestinians by publishing an article that included a scathing attack on both the PA and Hamas, holding them responsible for the continued suffering of their people.

In his article, Dr. Abrash also holds the two Palestinian parties responsible for the delay in rebuilding thousands of houses that were destroyed or damaged in the Gaza Strip during last year's military conflict between Israel and Hamas. He points out that Hamas and the PA have been holding each other responsible for the suffering of Palestinians. "Sometimes, they also put all the blame on Israel for all that is happening in the Gaza Strip," he said.

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Open Letter to the Archbishop of Westminster

by Denis MacEoin  •  July 30, 2015 at 4:00 am

  • With Islam, how it is possible to dialogue with a faith that denies the divinity of Christ, regards the Bible as corrupt, believes that all Christians are the inferiors of Muslims and are destined to hell fire? What is there to talk about if both sides are to be honest about their beliefs?

  • When members of ISIS murder apostates, it is hard to condemn them, as that is what the Prophet did. When they take slave girls as war booty, that is what the Prophet did. Waging jihad is an injunction in many chapters of the Qur'an.

  • I do not know what copy of the Qur'an Pope Francis has been shown, but it is clearly very different to any copy in my possession, whether the original Arabic or a translation.

  • When hate preachers in British mosques convey a violent or intolerant message to their congregants, they do so by quoting the Qur'an as the Word of God, thereby sanctioning acts of jihad. To ignore this is to hamper us in our efforts to bring Muslims into peaceful relations with the West, with all non-Muslims and especially with one another.

  • What was striking was that, instead of successive generations of Muslims becoming better integrated into British society, the younger they are, the more radical they become. Apparently the majority of Muslims do not feel particularly progressive.

  • Only 34% of British Muslims believe the Holocaust happened. 62% of Muslims here do not support freedom of speech. Only 7% of Muslims in the UK consider themselves as British first. CSP Poll this year reported that 38% of Muslim-Americans say Islamic State (ISIS) beliefs are Islamic or correct. Figures such these are indicative of a wider level of acceptance of extreme ideas than your comments and those of many politicians suggest.

Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the Archbishop of Westminster (center). Image source: Catholic Church England and Wale

On June 19, when Britain's Prime Minister, David Cameron, spoke at the 2015 Global Security Forum in Bratislava, one section (under the heading 'Clarity') drew widespread attention from the media and politicians, and from some the religious realm.

In that passage, Cameron spoke about the threat posed by the Islamic State (IS, ISIS, ISIL, or, in Arabic, Da'ish). "In ISIL," he started, "we have one of the biggest threats our world has faced." He went on to express concern about the way in which young British Muslims were being drawn into the ISIS web through the internet or within their communities:

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UK: David Cameron Declares War on Islamic Extremism

by Soeren Kern  •  July 29, 2015 at 5:00 am

  • "But you don't have to support violence to subscribe to certain intolerant ideas which create a climate in which extremists can flourish. Ideas which are hostile to basic liberal values such as democracy, freedom and sexual equality. Ideas which actively promote discrimination, sectarianism and segregation...." – UK Prime Minister David Cameron.

  • Cameron, however, has not offered a precise definition of "extremism," and it remains unclear how his government will balance efforts to silence Islamic extremists with the right to free speech. The government would "actively encourage" moderate Muslims, especially those who are working toward a "reformation" of Islam, one that would be "free from the poison of Islamist extremism."

  • "What I call the grievance justification, must be challenged.... When they say that these are wronged Muslims getting revenge on their Western wrongdoers, let's remind them: from Kosovo to Somalia, countries like Britain have stepped in to save Muslim people from massacres -- it's groups like ISIL, Al Qaeda and Boko Haram that are the ones murdering Muslims." -- UK Prime Minister David Cameron.

  • Douglas Murray also pointed out the glaring contradiction between Cameron's words and deeds: while pledging to confront Islamic extremism, he is also seeking to lift sanctions on Iran, the "most extreme, anti-Western nation-destroyer of them all."

  • "There is also a contradiction between Mr Cameron extolling British values such as free speech and then suggesting that Muslims who object to gay equality are somehow extremist and their views should not be tolerated. Everyone in this country, Muslims included, must have a right to express their views, no matter how intolerant they are." -- Mohammed Shafiq, Chief Executive of the Ramadhan Foundation.

Image source: No. 10 Downing Street.

Prime Minister David Cameron has outlined a new five-year plan to fight Islamic extremism in Britain.

The strategy — the specifics of which will be unveiled in the coming months — rests on four pillars: challenging the ideology of Islamism; confronting those who promote Islamic extremism; encouraging moderate Muslims to speak up and be heard; and improving Muslim integration.

Cameron, however, has not offered a precise definition of "extremism," and it remains unclear how his government will balance efforts to silence Islamic extremists with the right to free speech.

Muslim reaction to the plan has been mixed: some have hailed it as "brave," "bold," "overdue," and "an important first step," while others have criticized it as "confusing," "contradictory," "over-simplified," and "Islamophobic."

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Obama's Gamble with Iran's Theocratic Regime

by Robert D. Onley  •  July 28, 2015 at 5:00 am

  • Obama's Iran deal is a direct manifestation of the President's fundamentally misguided worldview, one that wishes away danger and then believes in the wishes.

  • Even more concerning is that the Iran deal may directly conflict with U.S. obligations as a signatory of the Non-Proliferation Treaty. The Iran deal may be unconstitutional, violate international law and feature commitments that President Obama could not otherwise lawfully make. By seeking approval of the deal under the UN Security Council, Obama has bound the U.S. under international law without Senate consent.

  • The gravest consequence of Obama's Iran deal is that the world bestowed ideological legitimacy on the Islamic Republic's radical theocracy, and in so doing has consigned the people of Iran to near permanent rule under the iron fist of Shi'a Islamism.

  • A total reversal of the Iranian regime's behavior should have been, and still can be, a precondition for the removal of any sanctions related to Iran's nuclear program. An end to Iran's financial and materiel support for terrorist forces such as Hezbollah and Hamas must be demanded, along with the return of the four American hostages Iran is holding.

  • There is still time for a better deal that can be had.

As President Obama and Secretary Kerry dominated the airwaves with rounds of media interviews to defend the Iran deal last week, German Vice Chancellor and Economic Minister Sigmar Gabriel flew straight to Tehran for the first of what are certain to be countless meetings by P5+1 leaders to capitalize on new business opportunities in Iran.

In Europe, it seems, there is no debate to be had over the Iran deal; rather, it is a fait accompli.

But in the United States, the domestic debate is heating up, fueled by a Presidential primary campaign and increasingly justified bipartisan anxiety over the bill.

Independent of these political realities, however, the immediacy and tenacity of the White House's defense of the Iran deal (which now has its own @TheIranDeal Twitter account, no less), betrays an acute unspoken discomfort by many Democrats with the practical flaws and global security dangers that the deal presents.

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Iran Deal: $150 Billion to Fund Obama's War

by George Phillips  •  July 28, 2015 at 4:00 am

  • The Iran deal does not prevent a nuclear Iran. At best, it only delays it a few years.

  • Under the disastrous Iran nuclear deal, $150 billion would go to a single regime that has been a state sponsor of terrorism for the entire 36 years of its existence.

  • The Iran deal, in five years, will actually lift a ban on sending Iran conventional weapons, including (in eight years) intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of hitting the United States. But Iran is already wasting no time buying weapons and producing weapons on its own.

  • When Obama leaves office, he may think that any catastrophe the Iran deal causes will not "technically" be his, but the next president's. But it is his. It's as if someone is lighting a long fuse and will then say he was not near the dynamite when it went off. Any explosions that result from this huge military and financial payday to Iran will, and should, be known as "Obama's war."

Why is Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif so happy?
Zarif is shown hugging French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius at the close of nuclear talks in Geneva, Nov. 23, 2014. (Image source: ISNA)

In 1947, U.S. President Truman made history by launching the Marshall Plan, sending $13 billion (about $140 billion in today's dollars) to help rebuild post-war Europe, in order to prevent Western Europe from falling to Communist expansion.

Today President Obama is trying to make history through an Iranian nuclear deal that will give an astounding $150 billion of sanctions relief to a regime that was in 2014 considered by the U.S. Department of State, along with Sudan and Syria, one of the world's leading sponsors of terrorism.

The Marshall Plan was spread out over 17 countries that were U.S. allies and considered critical in the long struggle that would put Soviet communism on the "ash-heap of history," in the words of President Ronald Reagan.

Under the President Obama's disastrous Iran nuclear deal, $150 billion would go to a single regime that has been a state sponsor of terrorism for the entire 36 years of its existence.

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