Latest Analysis and Commentary

France to Vote on the Great Replacement of Western Civilization

by Giulio Meotti  •  October 17, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • "It is like humidity in a house. Initially the threat is invisible...." — Boualem Sansal, Algerian novelist, L'Express.

  • Bfmtv interviewed Fewzi Benhabib, a resident of Saint-Denis. Since his arrival from Algeria 25 years ago, he found in France the ideology from which he was fleeing in his former country "For the Islamists, it is a question of Islamizing modernity, not modernizing Islam."

  • Next year, France will decide to try to save itself or continue to sink. Either way, it will unleash a tsunami that will not stop at its borders and instead flood all of Western Europe.

"It is like humidity in a house. Initially the threat is invisible...." — Boualem Sansal, Algerian novelist. (Photo by Farouk Batiche/AFP via Getty Images)

"Where Islam takes hold, it is forever. Islamism is based on Islam, which no one has the right to criticize. But in your countries it also plays a role in democracy and in the rule of law. Islamism exploits these values. Since democracy recognizes all opinions, from the far right to the far left, it is obliged to recognize Islam as well. All those who do not commit attacks or violent acts are, in principle, protected in a state of law. Islamism thus immediately finds itself in a conquered terrain. It is necessary to fight Islamism from the beginning. Because it is like humidity in a house. Initially the threat is invisible, it penetrates the walls which, little by little, crumble. When you realize it is too late, you have to destroy everything to clean up. It becomes a mission impossible. France is at the stage where it has just discovered that Islam is eroding her home".

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The General's Second Death in Baghdad

by Amir Taheri  •  October 17, 2021 at 4:00 am

  • First, last week's election, the fifth in Iraq's history since liberation in 2003, shows that despite many ups and downs caused by historic and cultural bumps on the road, the process of democratization is still well on its course.

  • The use of biometric cards also helped with ensuring the process against organized fraud.

  • We have not completed a breakdown of the results, but at first glance it is clear that a new generation of Iraqi politicians is taking shape. The fact that young activists representing pre-Covid street protesters won more than 8% of the seats may point to new directions in Iraqi politics.

  • Last week, the Tehran media labelled the Iraqi election as "the first test for Gen. Esmail Qa'ani" the lackluster bureaucrat who has replaced the bombastic Soleimani.

  • Well, Qa'ani emerges as the loser that he deserves to be. As for Soleimani, who died in Baghdad, his ghost now witnesses a second death in Iraq, this time of Soleimanism.

Last week's election, the fifth in Iraq's history since liberation in 2003, shows that despite many ups and downs caused by historic and cultural bumps on the road, the process of democratization is still well on its course. Pictured: A woman voter casts her vote at a polling station in Baghdad on October 10, 2021. (Photo by Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP via Getty Images)

Bravo Iraq!

This was the phrase that automatically came to my mind the other day as the Iraq's latest general election was completed without incident.

The kudos was deserved for several reasons.

First, last week's election, the fifth in Iraq's history since liberation in 2003, shows that despite many ups and downs caused by historic and cultural bumps on the road, the process of democratization is still well on its course.

It also reaffirmed the invaluable consensus reached among Iraqis of all political persuasions that winning and holding power is legitimate only through the free expression of the people through elections. Though nothing in history is irreversible, the traditional culture in which power was won and lost in rebellions, coups d'etat, street riots, foreign invasions or assassinations of the ruler may have had its day in Iraq.

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Iran's Mullahs and China Empowered Under Biden Administration

by Majid Rafizadeh  •  October 16, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • In another blow to the US, after many years of Iran trying to be a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), SCO members finally agreed in September to elevate Iran's status from "observer" to "full member," even though the global financial watchdog, the Financial Action Task Force, had placed the Islamic Republic on its terrorism financing blacklist.

  • The SCO is a political, military, economic and security alliance that currently includes China, Russia, Iran, Pakistan, India, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Kazakhstan. This alliance will likely... assist the mullahs of Iran to defy the West.

  • In the face of these critical developments, the Biden administration has remained silent

  • The Chinese regime is profiting as well. This [25-year deal with Iran], which appears similar to a colonial agreement, grants Communist China significant rights over the nation's resources. Leaked information reveals that one of its terms is that China will be investing nearly $400 billion in Iran's oil, gas and petrochemicals industries. In return, China will get priority to bid on any new project in Iran that is linked to these sectors. China will also receive a 12% discount and it can delay payments by up to two years. China will also be able to pay in any currency it chooses. It is also estimated that, in total, China will receive discounts of nearly 32%. Another secret element of the agreement has a military dimension: China will deploy 5,000 members of its security forces on the ground in Iran.

  • Such a strategic and economic deal is a clear win for the Chinese Communist Party.... China will have full authority over Iran's islands, gain access to Iran's oil at a highly deeply rate and increase its influence and presence in almost every sector of Iranian industry, including telecommunications, banking, energy, railways and ports.

  • For the ruling clerics of Iran, appeasement means only more weakness.

China's strategic 25-year agreement on economic and security cooperation with Iran, which appears similar to a colonial agreement, grants Communist China significant rights over Iran's resources. Leaked information reveals that one of its terms is that China will be investing nearly $400 billion in Iran's oil, gas and petrochemicals industries. Pictured: Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (right) and China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi, at the signing of the 25-year agreement in Tehran, Iran on March 27, 2021. (Photo by AFP via Getty Images)

The Chinese Communist Party has openly been helping the Iranian regime evade US sanctions -- most likely due to what reports have been referring to as the weak leadership and "top national security threat" of the US Biden administration.

This Communist Chinese salvage operation could partially explain why the ruling mullahs of Iran see no incentive to halt their nuclear program or come to the negotiating table.

When the Biden administration reached out to Chinese Communist Party to cut its oil imports from Iran, a senior U.S. official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told the Reuters news agency:

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Biden's Credibility Plummets over Purchase of Chinese-Made Drones

by Con Coughlin  •  October 15, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • Critics of DJI's systems claim they have the potential to be monitored remotely, and a review of the drones conducted by the Pentagon earlier this year concluded that they posed a potential threat to national security.

  • The Pentagon has been voicing concerns about commercial off-the-shelf drones since 2018, when it implemented a ban. The following year, Congress passed legislation banning the use of drones and components manufactured in China, and the Trump administration blacklisted DJI for national security reasons

  • "DJI drones are safe and secure for government and enterprise operations." -- spokesman for DJI rejecting claims that its drones posed a security risk, Reuters, July 23, 2021

  • Given the Chinese Communist Party's abysmal record for trustworthiness, however – as in promising not to militarise the fake islands they built in the South China Sea just before they militarised them, or claiming that their Chinese virus, COVID-19, was not transmissible human-to-human – this assessment is less than reassuring.

Nothing better illustrates the Biden administration's utter incompetence in safeguarding America's interests than the revelation that a number of federal agencies are reportedly purchasing surveillance drones from China, including those made by DJI, which are used by the U.S. Secret Service and FBI. Critics of DJI's systems claim they have the potential to be monitored remotely, and a review of the drones conducted by the Pentagon earlier this year concluded that they posed a potential threat to national security. Pictured: A DJI drone. (Photo by Hector Retamal/AFP via Getty Images)

Nothing better illustrates the Biden administration's utter incompetence in safeguarding America's interests than the revelation that a number of federal agencies are reportedly purchasing surveillance drones from China.

The Pentagon has previously advised against US agencies purchasing Chinese-made drones on the grounds that they could be used to transfer sensitive data to Beijing's communist rulers.

But now a new report by the Axios website claims that a number of federal law enforcement agencies in the Biden administration have purchased drones from China that have previously been labeled a potential national security threat by the Pentagon.

According to Axios, both the U.S. Secret Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation have recently acquired surveillance drones from the Shenzhen-based company Da Jiang Innovations (DJI).

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Germany: Cologne Mosques to Begin Outdoor Broadcasting of Muslim Call to Prayer

by Soeren Kern  •  October 14, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • The city of Cologne, once a stronghold of Christendom in Germany, has authorized mosques in the city to begin sounding Muslim calls to prayer over outdoor loudspeakers. The move, ostensibly aimed at promoting multicultural diversity and inclusion, represents a significant step toward the cultural normalization of Islam in Germany. It is taking German multiculturalism into uncharted territory.

  • Critics say that comparing Islamic prayer calls to church bells is a false equivalence because the muezzin proclaims religious slogans such as "there is no god but Allah" and "Allahu Akbar" ("Allah is the Greatest").

  • "The Muslim call to prayer is not like the ringing of church bells, which are a reminder of a scheduled worship service. Instead, it is a creed and a statement of political Islam, which has unfortunately been abused in many ways in recent years. The call 'Allahu Akbar' is not only a call to prayer, but it has also become the battle cry of jihad by Islamist terrorists." — Necla Kelek, Turkish-born German Islam expert.

  • "It's not about 'religious freedom' or 'diversity,' as Mayor Reker claims. The mosque operators want visibility. They celebrate the muezzin as a show of power over their neighborhoods." —Ahmad Mansour, Israeli-Arab and German Islam expert.

  • "The Muslim call to prayer, the muezzin call, is now permitted in Cologne. Cologne's Lord Mayor Henriette Reker calls this a 'symbol of diversity.' For me it is the opposite — a sign of discrimination.... In 2015, I had to flee from Bangladeshi Islamists because I publicly criticized Islamism. When I hear 'Allahu Akbar' from loudspeakers in Germany, I think of a lot, just not diversity.... The muezzin call reminds me of the killing of my six blogger friends by Islamists and the brutal repression of minorities.... This call from the speakers of conservative mosques is above all a show of power. The fact that the city of Cologne now allows the muezzin call with reference to tolerance is a sign of false tolerance for me." — Shammi Haque, a Bangladeshi-born journalist in exile in Germany.

The city of Cologne, once a stronghold of Christendom in Germany, has authorized mosques in the city to begin sounding Muslim calls to prayer over outdoor loudspeakers. Pictured: The Cologne Central Mosque. (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)

Acceding to demands from Islamic organizations sponsored by the Turkish government, the city of Cologne, once a stronghold of Christendom in Germany, has authorized mosques in the city to begin sounding Muslim calls to prayer over outdoor loudspeakers. The move, ostensibly aimed at promoting multicultural diversity and inclusion, represents a significant step toward the cultural normalization of Islam in Germany. It is taking German multiculturalism into uncharted territory.

Observers believe that Cologne — famous for its cathedral, the largest Gothic church in northern Europe — is establishing a national precedent, and that many of the more than 3,000 mosques in Germany will soon also begin publicly calling Muslims to prayer. They say that German towns and cities will evoke the sounds and images of the Islamic Middle East.

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Why Palestinians Prefer To Work In Israel

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  October 13, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • The fact that a large number of Palestinians are desperate to work in Israel is a sign of the failure of Hamas and the Palestinian Authority to improve the living conditions of their people despite the massive sums of money they receive from various sources, including the United States, European Union and United Nations.

  • Instead of holding Hamas responsible for what he called the "tragedy" in the Gaza Strip, al-Amsi and other Palestinians choose to blame Israel.

  • This view is in keeping with the longstanding habit of the Palestinian leadership to evade their responsibility for thievery and non-governance by blaming Israel for everything.

  • Many Palestinians and Arabs, however, are no longer buying this nonsense and know exactly who is trying to help and who has not done a thing to end their suffering.

  • "Thousands of Palestinians, including those with [academic] degrees, are fighting for a job in Israel. I guarantee you that if Israel announced that it wants workers from Algeria, they would cross the Sahara [Desert] on foot to work in Israel to escape the hell they are living in at home." — Hoda Jannat, Syrian journalist and political analyst, Twitter, October 7, 2021.

  • As has now become embarrassingly clear for all to see, Israel has become the only hope for the hungry workers in the Gaza Strip -- who have been abandoned not only by their leaders, but by the rest of their Arab brothers as well.

The fact that a large number of Palestinians are desperate to work in Israel is a sign of the failure of Hamas and the Palestinian Authority to improve the living conditions of their people despite the massive sums of money they receive from various sources, including the United States, European Union and United Nations. Pictured: Palestinian men in the northern Gaza Strip gather to apply for permits to work in Israel, on October 6, 2021. (Photo by Mahmud Hams/AFP via Getty Images)

Palestinians in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip are excited. Israeli authorities have decided to allow thousands of them to work in Israel. The news about the Israeli decision spread like wildfire, prompting tens of thousands of Palestinians to converge on the offices of the chambers of commerce throughout the Gaza Strip in the hope of obtaining a permit to work in Israel.

The scenes of Palestinian scrambling to receive permits to work in Israel have angered and embarrassed many Palestinians and Arabs, many of whom believe that Palestinian leaders are not doing enough to end the suffering of the Palestinians.

The fact that a large number of Palestinians are desperate to work in Israel is a sign of the failure of Hamas and the Palestinian Authority to improve the living conditions of their people despite the massive sums of money they receive from various sources, including the United, European Union and United Nations.

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Confronting a Financial Assault on America's Future

by Lawrence Kadish  •  October 12, 2021 at 10:00 am

  • Far more destructive that most Americans could ever imagine, the nation's multi trillion dollar deficit now being advocated by progressive socialists in Congress would place our future on a collision course with catastrophic bankruptcy.

  • Which may just be the outcome some in Congress are seeking to achieve.

  • Democratic Senator Joseph Manchin told Associated Press he won't support even half of Biden's multi-trillion dollar progressive wish list. He has been joined by fellow Democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema in seeking to avert Washington's march to become a global pauper. Theirs is a courageous stand and one that will be recorded by historians as last ditch actions taken by a literal handful to prevent America's self-directed destruction.

  • We would be wise to... recognize that America's deficit is more than a number. It is a nation-destroying weapon.

(Image source: iStock)

If the tragic day ever comes when America's global leadership is but a distant memory it will not be because of a nuclear strike, a searing pandemic, or even a crippling cyberattack.

No.

It will be from a self- inflicted mortal wound called "the deficit."

Far more destructive than most Americans could ever imagine, the nation's multi-trillion dollar deficit now being advocated by progressive socialists in Congress would place our future on a collision course with catastrophic bankruptcy. Such an event would destroy the very foundation of our financial system, the savings of every hard-working middle class family, and our country's very ability to defend democracy.

Which may just be the outcome some in Congress are seeking to achieve.

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Garland Memo on Parent Protests May Chill Free Speech

by Alan M. Dershowitz  •  October 12, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • The memo acknowledges that "spirited debate about policy matters is protected under our Constitution." .... Nothing wrong with that. But no similar memo was directed against Black Lives Matter and other far-left groups that not only threaten violence against public officials and private citizens, but also engage in a considerable amount of criminal conduct, such as arson and destruction of property.

  • As a result of this timing, context and apparent lack of concern for the Black Lives Matter type of protests, many parents are understandably worried that the Justice Department may be engaged in selective investigations and ultimately selective prosecutions.

  • The most distressing aspect of this memorandum is its apparent focus on right-wing activities, as distinguished from equally dangerous left-wing activities. The rule of law must always pass the "shoe on the other foot test."

  • In the past, the ACLU vigorously protected the rights of Klansmen, Nazis and other right-wing thugs with whom they fundamentally disagreed. They worried about the chilling effect that government threats could have.... These concerns seem to have been subordinated to partisan and ideological considerations.

  • I like Merrick Garland. I supported his nomination to the Supreme Court. And I think he was a good choice for Attorney General. It is in this spirit that I call on him to clarify his memorandum in two respects: (1) by making it clear that law enforcement will not investigate or prosecute raucous protests that fall on the protected side of the Constitutional line; and (2) that whatever standards law enforcement does apply must be applied equally to protests by left-wing agitators.

  • I disapprove of teaching captive student from the "critical legal studies" playbook, precisely because it is not critical or objective. It tends to be propaganda rather than education. But I will defend protests against both views with equal vigor, because the First Amendment does not distinguish between protected and unprotected protests based on content, and neither should the Justice Department.

In the past, the ACLU vigorously protected the rights of... thugs with whom they... disagreed.... These concerns seem to have been subordinated to partisan and ideological considerations.... [M]any parents are understandably worried that the Justice Department may be engaged in selective investigations and ultimately selective prosecutions. Pictured: Attorney General Merrick Garland. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Pool/Getty Images)

Attorney General Merrick Garland recently released a memorandum addressing "a disturbing spike in harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence against school administrators, board members, teachers, and staff...." The actual words of the memorandum – the lyrics – seem appropriate on their face, but the music is discordant with the First Amendment.

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What Does Joe Biden's Health Have to Do with the Future of Taiwan?

by Pete Hoekstra  •  October 11, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • The Chinese communists very much want to gain control of Taiwan, and the current intelligence assessment that China's leadership is probably looking at is one that spells opportunity — a weak U.S. president, wary of foreign military entanglements, whose political fortunes are crashing, and in their analysis is the real possibility of a transfer of power to an even weaker and less popular vice president in Kamala Harris, who has little foreign policy chops.

  • The bottom line — the next year will be a high-risk period between China and the United States where serious miscalculations could take place. And that is why... the Biden Administration must send a clear signal of support now for Taiwan.

The Chinese communists very much want to gain control of Taiwan, and the current intelligence assessment that China's leadership is probably looking at is one that spells opportunity — a weak U.S. president, wary of foreign military entanglements, whose political fortunes are crashing, and in their analysis is the real possibility of a transfer of power to an even weaker and less popular vice president in Kamala Harris, who has little foreign policy chops. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

What is China planning? More than 150 air incursions into Taiwan's Air Defense Identification Zone, testing Taiwanese response capabilities, strategies, timing and other military capabilities. Are these just Chinese war games or is China getting close to invading Taiwan? These are just some of the many questions that U.S. and other world leaders are grappling with as they try to determine the plans and intentions of China's President Xi Jinping and the Chinese Communist Party.

Understanding "leadership intent" is one of the key priorities for intelligence collection and analysis. It is safe to assume America's intelligence agencies are doing this with China and the Chinese are doing the same with the U.S. So, what does that have to do with U.S. President Joe Biden's health and communist China's intentions when it comes to Taiwan?

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The Jihadist Genocide of Christians in Nigeria Intensifies

by Raymond Ibrahim  •  October 10, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • What several international observers have for years characterized as a "pure genocide" of Christians in Nigeria has reached new levels.

  • "We have never seen an evil government in this country like the one of today. The government is fully in support of the bloodshed in Nigeria. We are being killed just because we are not Muslims. These evil Fulani jihadists are enjoying the backing of the government to go about killing people, destroying their houses and farmlands, yet when we try to defend ourselves, the government will go about arresting our people. What kind of justice is this?" — Rev. Jacob Kwashi, Anglican bishop, during a funeral for 17 murdered Christians, Morning Star News, August 30, 2021.

  • "[T]here is an ongoing genocide in Southern Kaduna targeted at the indigenous Christians population.... Not a single church or school is left standing. Not a single herdsman has been apprehended all these years. It is unfortunate that... the western media do not believe that our lives are worth any news." — Jonathan Asake, a former member of Nigeria's House of Representatives, The Epoch Times, August 4, 2021.

  • "Since the government and its apologists are claiming the killings have no religious undertones, why are the terrorists and herdsmen targeting the predominantly Christian communities and Christian leaders?" — The Christian Association of Nigeria, International Centre for Investigative Reporting, January 21, 2020.

  • "It's tough to tell Nigerian Christians this isn't a religious conflict since what they see are Fulani fighters clad entirely in black, chanting 'Allahu Akbar!' and screaming 'Death to Christians.'" — Sister Monica Chikwe, Crux, August 4, 2019.

Since the Islamic insurgency in Nigeria began in earnest in July 2009, more than 60,000 Christians have either been murdered or abducted during raids. The abducted Christians have never returned to their homes and their loved ones believe them to be dead. In the same time frame, approximately 20,000 churches and Christian schools have been torched and destroyed. Pictured: The burnt First African Church Mission in Jos, Nigeria on July 6, 2015. (Photo by AFP via Getty Images)

What several international observers have for years characterized as a "pure genocide" of Christians in Nigeria has reached new levels.

Since the Islamic insurgency began in earnest in July 2009 — first at the hands of Boko Haram, an Islamic terrorist organization, and later by the Fulani, who are Muslim herdsmen also radicalized and motivated by jihadist ideology — more than 60,000 Christians have either been murdered or abducted during raids. The abducted Christians have never returned to their homes and their loved ones believe them to be dead. In addition, in the same time frame, approximately 20,000 churches and Christian schools have been torched and destroyed.

Some of these findings are documented in an August 4, 2021 report by the International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law, also known as "Intersociety," a nonprofit human rights organization based in Nigeria. Although the entire report is worth reading, a few notable excerpts follow:

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Iran: When Preconditions Disappear

by Amir Taheri  •  October 10, 2021 at 4:00 am

  • The blood-curdling outburst may be caused by the fact that the usual chorus of verbal revolutionaries hasn't yet realized that their regime is in rather poor shape and can no longer afford the luxury of pseudo-revolutionary logorrhea. On the other hand, the soothing tune may be a lullaby to send real or imaginary foes into a slumber.

  • Taken as it is, this represents a huge climb-down by the Islamic Republic.

  • Biden might seize the opportunity provided by Tehran's claimed "pragmatism" to tackle the real source of tension with the Islamic Republic in the past four decades: its efforts to "export" the Islamic revolution and carve out an ideological empire in the name of its brand of Islam.

  • Some of us have always believed that the "nuclear issue" was a side show designed to divert attention from the fact that, even without a putative nuclear arsenal, the Khomeinist regime has been and remains a threat to regional peace and stability. It has always said it does not intend to make a nuclear bomb but uses the promise not to do what it says it doesn't want to do as a license for doing what it shouldn't be doing in other domains.

  • Our guess is that Tehran's new show of pragmatism does not represent a genuine change of nature by the regime.... Trust is useful only if it is coupled with stringent verification.

Pictured: Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi speaks before parliament in Tehran on August 25, 2021. (Photo by Atta Kenare/AFP via Getty Images)

Is it because they are still learning the ropes or have they understood that they can no longer afford a change of course? The question concerns President Ebrahim Raisi's new team in the Islamic Republic of Iran sending conflicting signals.

At one level, we have the usual blood-curdling outbursts, mostly coming from the few hundred mullahs and military men who provide the backbone of the Khomeinist regime for the past four decades. At another level, one hears a soothing tune designed to signal that the new team may not be the bitter-ender outfit that former President Hassan Rouhani and his team claimed.

The blood-curdling outburst may be caused by the fact that the usual chorus of verbal revolutionaries hasn't yet realized that their regime is in rather poor shape and can no longer afford the luxury of pseudo-revolutionary logorrhea. On the other hand, the soothing tune may be a lullaby to send real or imaginary foes into a slumber.

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Iran Regime's Hostage Taking: Where Are the West and the UN?

by Majid Rafizadeh  •  October 9, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • In the hope of resurrecting the disastrous Iran nuclear deal and subsequently lifting sanctions on the ruling mullahs of Iran, the Biden administration and the European Union have been silent on the fates of foreign hostages kept in Iran's notorious prisons.

  • Among the current foreign citizens currently held hostage in Iran is Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a British mother.... Amid the ongoing nuclear talks between the Iranian regime and world powers, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps court sentenced her to yet another year in prison in April 2021.

  • American citizens held as prisoners in Iran include Iranian-Americans Baquer and Siamak Namazi, Morad Tahbaz, and businessman and conservationist Emad Shargi. Shargi's family has pleaded with the Biden administration to help free him.

  • Instead of appeasing the Iranian regime and turning a blind eye to its human rights violations, the West needs to hold the ruling mullahs of Iran accountable for detaining foreign nationals as hostages, bargaining chips and as pawns with which to extract political and economic concessions.

Among the current foreign citizens currently held hostage in Iran is Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a British mother, who, along with her then-22-month-old daughter, traveled to Iran in 2016 to visit her family for Nowruz, and was arrested as she was about to board a plane to return home to the UK. Pictured: Richard and Gabriella Ratcliffe, the husband and daughter Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliff, during a news conference in London on October 11, 2019. (Photo by Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP via Getty Images)

In the hope of resurrecting the disastrous Iran nuclear deal (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) and subsequently lifting sanctions on the ruling mullahs of Iran, the Biden administration and the European Union have been silent on the fates of foreign hostages kept in Iran's notorious prisons.

Some of the foreign hostages in Iran come from Western countries, including the United States, France, Canada, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Australia.

Among the current foreign citizens currently held hostage in Iran is Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a British mother, who, along with her then-22-month-old daughter, traveled to Iran in 2016 to visit her family for Nowruz, the Iranian New Year, after the nuclear deal had been reached and sanctions against the Islamic Republic had been lifted. As she was about to board a plane to return home to the UK, she was surrounded by officials of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and arrested.

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Turkey's Airstrikes in Syria, Iraq

by Uzay Bulut  •  October 8, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • Turkey appears to be maneuvering to expand an Islamic state in Syria and Iraq.

  • The same Turkish government that claims to counter "terrorism" through its fight against the Kurdish PKK has supported ISIS in the region for years.

  • "The ability of ISIS to become a functioning state so quickly is largely due to its relationship with President Erdoğan in Turkey." — Dr. Mordechai Kedar, BESA Center, October 11, 2020.

  • The Turkish government -- a member of NATO -- clearly seems to feel itself on a jihadist roll.

On August 17, in Iraq, the Turkish military carried out an airstrike on a hospital in Sinjar Province, where the Yazidi minority had already been victim of a genocide in 2014 at the hands of ISIS. The raid, consisting of three drone strikes, "totally destroyed" the makeshift hospital in the village of Sekaina. A doctor in Sinjar said that at least three people had been killed and five others wounded. Pictured: An Anka drone in the service of the Turkish military, 8.6 meters long and with a wingspan of 17.6 meters, in a hanger in Ankara on March 5, 2021. (Photo by Adem Altan/AFP via Getty Images)

Since the Taliban's violent takeover of Afghanistan on August 15, Turkey has increased its expansionist military activities in the Middle East in a way that is significantly impacting the lives of minorities.

Turkey appears to be maneuvering to expand an Islamic state in Syria and Iraq.

Turkey has so far been using its fight against the PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) as an excuse to justify its military aggression, destruction and casualties of persecuted minorities. Among those communities affected by Turkish military actions in Iraq and Syria are Yazidis, Assyrians and Kurds -- communities previously targeted by ISIS and al-Qaeda.

On August 17, in Iraq, the Turkish military carried out an airstrike on a hospital in Sinjar Province, where the Yazidi minority had already been victim of a genocide in 2014 at the hands of ISIS.

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Communist China's Aggression in the South China Sea

by Judith Bergman  •  October 7, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • In March, a huge Chinese fishing fleet descended on Whitsun Reef, which lies within the exclusive economic zone of the Philippines. The Philippine government called on China to cease "militarizing the area". Almost eight months later, however, more than 150 Chinese vessels reportedly remain in Philippine waters.

  • China's illegal takeover of Hong Kong and Taliban's seizure of Afghanistan, where the US even failed to save all US citizens -- China could be planning to use force to capture Taiwan much sooner than that -- the opportunity looks inviting. The question is: if China attacks Taiwan, whether the US will defend the island -- or even put in place serious deterrents. It will not help anyone except the Chinese Communist Party if consequences for invading Taiwan consist of nothing more damaging than "strong letter to follow."

  • China considers almost all of the South China Sea... part of Chinese territory. The Permanent Court of Arbitration in the Hague firmly rejected China's sovereignty claim in 2016 but five years after that ruling, China continues to reject the court's authority.

  • "The term 'sea areas under the jurisdiction of the People's Republic of China' is not defined in the law and is purposely vague. Enacting ambiguous and imprecise laws allows China to alter its position on the applicability of the law based on the circumstances at the time." -- Captain Raul Pedrozo, Professor of International Law at the U.S. Naval War College, "International Law Studies", Vol. 97, 2021.

  • "China is once again testing the international community to gauge how it will react to the enactment of yet another maritime law that exceeds the permissible jurisdictional limits of international law, as reflected in UNCLOS [The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.] China will undoubtedly use the new law to engage in grey zone operations below the threshold of armed conflict to intimidate its neighbors and further erode the rule of law at sea in the Indo-Pacific region." -- Captain Raul Pedrozo, Professor of International Law at the U.S. Naval War College, "International Law Studies", Vol. 97, 2021.

  • The revised maritime law came into effect just seven months after China's new coastguard law went into force on February 1. The Chinese coast guard law gives China's coast guard authority to use lethal force on foreign ships operating in Chinese waters, including disputed areas such as the South China Sea. In January, the Philippines filed a diplomatic protest against the Chinese coast guard law saying that it is a "verbal threat of war to any country that defies the law".

In March, a huge Chinese fishing fleet descended on Whitsun Reef, which lies within the exclusive economic zone of the Philippines. The Philippine government called on China to cease "militarizing the area". Almost eight months later, however, more than 150 Chinese vessels reportedly remain in Philippine waters. Pictured: Whitsun Reef, as seen from space. (Image Source: United States Geological Survey/NASA/Wikimedia Commons)

Tensions continue to rise in the South China Sea, as China, or, rightly, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), ramps up its military activities in the region. Within only the first four days of October, China conducted a record-breaking 150 incursions into Taiwan's air defense identification zone (ADIZ) -- after China's People Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) had already, in September, set another monthly record with 117 incursions, some with nuclear-capable bombers, fighter jets and reconnaissance planes. The incursions were reportedly the highest monthly number on record since Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense began reporting Chinese aerial incursions 13 months ago. In addition, in August, the first-ever incursion of Chinese military helicopters into Taiwan's ADIZ took place, with experts suggesting that the PLA was probing Taiwanese defense capabilities by using different aircraft.

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Why Arabs Are Annoyed With the Europeans

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  October 6, 2021 at 5:00 am

  • The European Parliament... has enraged many Arabs by calling for boycotting Expo 2020 Dubai...

  • The timing of the resolution is problematic. It implies that the European Parliament is seeking to punish the UAE for signing a peace treaty with Israel. The resolution coincided with the first anniversary of the signing of the Abraham Accords, the term used to refer to peace agreements between Israel and the UAE and Bahrain.

  • By singling out the UAE, the European Parliament has chosen to side with the enemies of peace, cooperation and normalization between Israelis and Arabs.

  • Worse, the European Parliament saw no reason to call out Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad for their daily human rights violations against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

  • Resolutions such as the one taken by the European Parliament are the kind that give the enemies of peace in the Middle East -- evidently now including the European Parliament -- ammunition to keep fighting to achieve their goal of destroying Israel.

  • They are opposed to the existence of Israel. They do not want to see Israel in the Middle East. Most of them want to replace Israel....

  • "[The decision] raises a question mark about the real reasons that led to this hostility practiced by the European Parliament towards a country that has achieved a lot on human rights issues.... The European Parliament is supposed to support these issues, not the exact opposite." — Mona Ali Al Motawa, prominent writer from Bahrain, Al-Watan, September 21, 2021.

  • [T]he UAE does not need "a certificate [of honor] from malicious entities and will not be affected by desperate attempts to disrupt its achievements." — Saudi columnist Dr. Ali Al-Kheshaiban, Al-Ain, September 22, 2021.

  • Some very vocal Arabs, in short, are loudly telling the Europeans to mind their own business.

  • The Arabs are also telling the Europeans that if they have to meddle in the internal affairs of the Arab countries, they should at least support those states, such as the UAE, that have made real strides in human rights, rather than supporting and emboldening terrorists through calls for the boycott of global cooperation events.

The European Parliament has enraged many Arabs by calling for a boycott of Expo 2020 Dubai, taking place in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) between October 2021 and March 2022. The timing of the resolution is problematic. It implies that the European Parliament is seeking to punish the UAE for signing a peace treaty with Israel. Pictured: The Israel pavilion at Dubai Expo 2020, on September 27, 2021. (Photo by AFP via Getty Images)

The European Parliament, one of three legislative branches of the European Union, has enraged many Arabs by calling for a boycott of Expo 2020 Dubai, taking place in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) between October 2021 and March 2022.

The theme of this year's Expo 2020 Dubai, one of the world's biggest events, is "Connecting Minds, Creating the Future." The sub-themes are "Sustainability, Opportunity and Mobility" with a focus on industries, financial capital, governance, employment, education, and technology.

The European Parliament resolution calling on the EU member states not to participate in the Dubai event, and for international companies to withdraw their sponsorship, is based on the Gulf state's alleged human rights violations.

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