Latest Analysis and Commentary

220 Airstrikes on Palestinians; World Yawns

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  April 26, 2018 at 5:00 am

  • Dropping barrels of dynamite on houses and hospitals in a Palestinian refugee camp is apparently of no interest to those who pretend to champion Palestinians around the world. Nor does the issue seem to move the UN Security Council.

  • UNRWA said that of the estimated 438,000 Palestine refugees remaining inside Syria, more than 95% (418,000) are in critical need of sustained humanitarian assistance.

  • As for the leaders of the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip? They are otherwise occupied. Mahmoud Abbas's Palestinian Authority and Hamas are too busy lunging at each other's throats and trying to take down Israel to pay much attention to their people's suffering in Syria.

Plumes of smoke billow up from the Yarmouk refugee camp in Damascus, as the Syrian Army shells the camp on April 20, 2018. (Image source: Ruptly screenshot)

While all eyes are set on the weekly demonstrations organized by Hamas and other Palestinian factions along the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel, as part of the so-called March of Return, a Palestinian refugee camp near Damascus is facing a wide-scale military offensive and ethnic cleansing by the Syrian army and its allies.

The war crimes committed against the Palestinians in Yarmouk camp have so far failed to prompt an ounce of outrage, much less the sort of outcry emerging from the international community over the events of the past four weeks along the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel.

The international community seems to differentiate between a Palestinian shot by an Israeli soldier and a Palestinian shot by a Syrian soldier.

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Genocide in Nigeria

by Raymond Ibrahim  •  April 26, 2018 at 4:30 am

  • Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari is set to visit the White House next week, April 30.

  • "General Buhari is presiding over a low-grade genocide perpetrated by his Fulani Herdsmen tribe. He must be told to fish out the murderers of Rev Fathers Joseph and Felix and bring them to justice. The killings must stop. US should halt aircraft sales to Nigeria until these attacks are halted and the perpetrators convicted." — Emmanuel Ogebe, a leading human rights lawyer in Nigeria.

Pictured: A January 3 Facebook post by Rev. Fathers Joseph Gor. Fr. He was murdered in his church in Nigeria by Muslim herdsmen on April 24.

Two days ago in Nigeria, on April 24, around 30 Muslim herdsmen stormed a church during early morning mass and massacred nearly 20 parishioners and two clergymen.

Rev. Fathers Joseph Gor and Felix Tyolaha were slaughtered while officiating at the altar of St. Ignatius Catholic Church in Mbalom village, Benue. Worshippers were gathered in the church for the daily 5:30 a.m. service when they heard gunshots.

"People started scampering and wailing," said Terhemen Angor, a local resident. Several people were "gunned down in cold blood while many sustained injuries including bullet wounds... After attacking the church, the invaders descended on the community and razed over 60 houses. The community is on fire and deserted, people are fleeing to neighbouring villages hoping to find a safe haven for their families."

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Imams in the U.S and Canada: Which Should be Backed?

by A. Z. Mohamed  •  April 26, 2018 at 4:00 am

  • While freedom of speech is permissible in the U.S., for centuries, hateful and violent rhetoric targeting Jews has been invariable in the religious and political discourse of Muslims, and is now as common in US and Canadian mosques, as in the Middle East.

  • While many Muslims seem never to tire of complaining about "Islamophobia" against their communities, they seem to have no problem disseminating hate speech -- and sometimes hate acts -- against other groups.

  • Statistics show that blacks, gays and Jews are far more disproportionately targeted for hate crimes in both the U.S. and Canada than Muslims are. When did anyone in North America last hear of ministers in churches or rabbis in synagogues calling for the death of Muslims?

  • Progressive Muslims and their imams should be promoted, consulted, and celebrated.

Raed Saleh Al-Rousan, imam and founder of Tajweed Institute's Houston branch, quotes an Islamic hadith to kill Jews. (Image source: MEMRI video screenshot)

Since U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel on December 6, 2017, at least three U.S. imams have called for the death of Jews -- not Israelis: Jews -- in Friday sermons at mosques across the U.S., which treasures freedom of speech, no matter how distasteful -- unless it is "directed at inciting or producing imminent lawless action" or "likely to incite or produce such action."

In Canada, however, there is no freedom of speech -- meaning that "hate speech" is regarded as a crime that can be prosecuted. A few years ago, imams who did call for death of Jews in Canada resulted in some of these imams being investigated or prosecuted.

It is important to know what is being said, and by whom.

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Has Europe Even Tried to Fight Anti-Semitism?

by Yves Mamou  •  April 25, 2018 at 5:00 am

  • Each time an anti-Semitic attack in Europe receives media attention, politicians rush to condemn it. But verbal condemnations alone change nothing. Anti-Semitism just gets bigger.

  • The European Union has adopted anti-Israel policies out of fear of upsetting Muslims, but this fear of upsetting Muslims has been fueling Muslim anti-Semitism.

  • When European governments refuse to accept Jerusalem as Israel's capital, and when they urge "restraint" instead of affirming that Israel has the right to defend itself, they are indulging in appeasement. On one side, they condemn anti-Semitism but on other, they are just whipping it up.

Pictured: A young Arab man attacks two young men wearing Jewish skullcaps in a Berlin street, on April 18, 2018. The attacker whipped the victims with a belt, while shouting "Yahudi" -- Arabic for "Jew". (Image source: CGTN video screenshot)

On April 18, 2018, two young men, both wearing Jewish skullcaps, were insulted by a group of Muslims and whipped with a belt in a clearly anti-Semitic attack in Prenzlauer Berg, one Berlin's most fashionable neighborhoods. The violent assault, partly filmed by one of the victims, sparked national indignation in Germany. One of the attackers can be heard on the video clearly shouting "Yahudi" (Arabic for "Jew").

"It is intolerable for young men to be attacked here just because they are wearing a kippah," said Heiko Maas, the German Foreign Minister. "Jews must never again feel threatened here. It is our responsibility to protect Jewish life."

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Sweden's Increasingly Lawless Immigration Policy?

by Nima Gholam Ali Pour  •  April 25, 2018 at 4:00 am

  • Sweden's National Board of Forensic Medicine reported that in 83% of the cases where it had stated an opinion about the age of the asylum applicant, the applicant had not been a minor. Many asylum seekers had lied about their age simply because there is greater probability of getting a residence permit -- and more benefits -- if you are a minor. It is also easier for minors to bring their relatives to Sweden through family immigration.

  • Afghan demonstrators were saying that Afghans who returned home would die. This second report showed that the problem for Afghans returning home was not security. The problem was the economy.

  • When members of the government presented their final version of the bill, the demand that unaccompanied youths should confirm their identity or present evidence that made their age probable, had been entirely removed.

Pictured: An "unaccompanied minor" asylum seeker from Afghanistan plays soccer during a training session for migrants organized by the Sandarna BK Football team on February 11, 2016 in Gothenburg, Sweden. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

In 2015, when approximately 35,369 "unaccompanied minors" came to Sweden, 66% of them were from Afghanistan. This was a staggering number. (In 2016 and 2017, only 3,533 unaccompanied minors came to Sweden.) In 2015, the high proportion of Afghans among the unaccompanied minors made the migrant group "unaccompanied minors" virtually synonymous with Afghani youth. During the last ten years, approximately 33,000 unaccompanied minors arrived in Sweden from Afghanistan.

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Spain: Jihad Continues

by Soeren Kern  •  April 24, 2018 at 5:00 am

  • Since the March 2004 attacks on Madrid's trains, Spanish authorities have arrested more than 750 jihadis in 243 counter-terrorism operations, according to the Interior Ministry.

  • Jihadis remain undeterred. A recent Islamic State document included a list of grievances against Spain for wrongs allegedly done to Muslims since the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa on July 16, 1212.

  • "There is little doubt that the autonomous region of Catalonia has become a prime base of operations for terrorist activity. Spanish authorities tell us they fear the threat from these atomized immigrant communities prone to radicalism, but they have very little intelligence on or ability to penetrate these groups." — US diplomatic cable, October 2, 2007.

An armed, masked Islamic State jihadist appears in a propaganda video, where he warns Spain that it would "pay a very heavy price" for expelling Muslims from al-Andalus hundreds of years ago. The Spanish subtitle above reads "Oh dear Andalus! You thought we forgot about you. I swear by Allah we have never forgotten you. No Muslim can forget Córdoba, Toledo or Xàtiva."

Ten members of an Islamic State jihadi cell have been sentenced to combined prison terms of nearly 100 years for a plot to bomb landmarks and behead infidels in Barcelona.

The cell, composed of five Moroccans, four Spaniards and a Brazilian, was separate to and independent of the jihadi group that killed 16 people in Barcelona and nearby Cambrils in August 2017.

The case shows that Spain continues to be a prime target for jihadis, many of whom are striving to reconquer al-Andalus, the Arabic name given to those parts of Spain, Portugal and France occupied by Muslim conquerors (also known as the Moors) from 711 to 1492. Many jihadis believe that territories Muslims lost during the Christian Reconquest of Spain still belong to the realm of Islam, and that Sharia law requires them to re-establish Muslim rule there.

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Germany: Migrant Crisis Delusions

by Vijeta Uniyal  •  April 24, 2018 at 4:30 am

  • A report commissioned by the German government found that newly-arrived asylum seekers were behind more than 90% percent of the increase in violent crimes in the state of Lower Saxony.

  • As of December 2017, an estimated 600,000 able-bodied asylum seekers in Germany were on the welfare dole, according to Die Welt. "More than half of the able-bodied unemployment benefit receivers at present are of foreign descent," wrote Der Spiegel on April 10, 2018.

  • Meanwhile, poverty in Germany, especially among elderly pensioners, has reached a historic high.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel poses for a selfie with Anas Modamani, a migrant from Syria, outside a shelter for migrants in Berlin, on September 10, 2015. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

While the number of Salafists in Germany reaches a record high and machete-wielding gangs riot on the country's streets, the establishment media not only covers up the fallout from Chancellor Angela Merkel's open door migration policy, but continues to paint a false picture of the country's current state.

"Cool Germany," a cover story on Britain's magazine, The Economist, claims that, "Germany is becoming more open and diverse" and "[m]any of the country's defining traits" including "its ethnic and cultural homogeneity, conformist and conservative society" are "suddenly in flux."

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Should Robert Mueller Be Investigated for Violating Civil Liberties?

by Alan M. Dershowitz  •  April 24, 2018 at 3:00 am

Robert Mueller. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Just as the first casualty of war is truth, so, too, the first casualty of hyper-partisan politics is civil liberties.

Many traditional civil libertarians have allowed their strong anti-Trump sentiments to erase their long-standing commitment to neutral civil liberties. They are now so desperate to get Trump that they are prepared to compromise the most basic due process rights. They forget the lesson of history that such compromises made against one's enemy are often used as precedents against one's friends. As Robert Bolt put it in the play and movie A Man for all Seasons:

Roper: So now you would give the Devil benefit of Law!

Thomas Moore: Yes, what would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

Roper: I'd cut down every law in England to do that?

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Palestinians: New Twist on an Old Lie

by Bassam Tawil  •  April 23, 2018 at 5:00 am

  • Zomlot informed his Jewish audience, in English, what he would never dare say in Arabic -- that the Palestinians will one day recognize the Jewish connection to Jerusalem.

  • If Zomlot made such a statement in his native Arabic language, he would be denounced as a traitor -- if he were very lucky. If he were less lucky, he would end up in a hospital or morgue.

  • Zomlot knows that he can always deny (in Arabic) what he said in English.

Pictured: Jerusalem's Western Wall, and the Temple Mount above it. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)

Denial of Jewish history in Jerusalem and the existence of the Jewish Temple has always been a central component of the Palestinian narrative and ideology.

Palestinians, like members of all societies, disagree on many things. Nevertheless, when it comes to the historical connection between Jews and Jerusalem, Palestinians manage to unite in lies: Palestinian political leaders, academics and religious leaders have long promoted the false narrative that Jerusalem was, and remains, an Arab and Islamic city.

We are currently witnessing a new twist on this old lie.

It seems that some Palestinians are now trying to deceive the world into believing that they do, indeed, recognize the Jewish people's historic connection to Jerusalem.

The problem is that Palestinian officials tell their people one thing in Arabic and the rest of the world another thing in English.

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"Everyone Was Afraid to Be Branded as a Racist"
Interview with Mona Walter

by Natalia Osten-Sacken  •  April 23, 2018 at 4:30 am

  • "If I speak about Islam, they interpret it as hating Muslims. But I do not hate Muslims. I believe that this ideology is dangerous for all mankind. The Muslim community will also suffer under the Sharia." — Mona Walter, Swedish activist from Mogadishu, Somalia.

  • "Jesus said we should love our enemies, but not that we should be stupid." — Mona Walter.

  • "I always say to my Christian friends, 'What do you think, what will happen to you if Islam becomes dominant here?'" — Mona Walter.

Mona Walter. (Image source: AlfaTV video screenshot)

Mona Walter, age 45, is a Swedish activist from Mogadishu, Somalia. In the early 1990s, she fled as a refugee to Sweden. There, she abandoned Islam and converted to Christianity. The act resulted in criticism and death threats. The mainstream media consider her a person working for religious freedom. Other organizations accuse her of fueling anti-Islamic movements.

Natalia Osten-Sacken: I have heard your statements stigmatizing Islam as an intolerant and hateful culture. If it is so, why did you not notice it in Somalia?

Mona Walter: In my country, we had our own African culture. People did not deal with religion so much. There was no Sharia, we had our own secular law. We came here as young, secular people. It is worth mentioning, that we belonged to the Sufi Sunni faction.

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Turkey: Is Erdogan's "Magic Spell" Beginning to Pale?

by Pinar Tremblay  •  April 23, 2018 at 4:00 am

  • Research conducted in March by 50 teachers from the Imam Hatip schools revealed that students are moving away from Islam.

  • "[Mosques] no longer serve people, but rather serve as a source of income for certain people." – Young imam, later fired.

  • Another cause of upset on the part of many religious Muslims is the content of the Diyanet-prepared Friday sermons, which frequently advocates violent jihad.

  • What is clearly on the rise, however, is great disappointment in the Erdogan government's version of Islam, especially when accompanied by corrupt politics and a deteriorating justice system.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

For decades, prominent Islamist figures would rarely criticize Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and when they did, it would be directed at his policies, rather than his personality. That trust seems beginning to change.

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Belgium: First Islamic State in Europe?

by Giulio Meotti  •  April 22, 2018 at 5:00 am

  • The leaders of Belgium's ISLAM Party apparently want to turn Belgium into an Islamic State. They call it "Islamist democracy" and have set a target date: 2030.

  • "The program is confusingly simple: replace all the civil and penal codes with sharia law. Period". — French magazine Causeur.

  • "The European capital [Brussels] will be Muslim in twenty years". — Le Figaro.

Riot police guard a road in the Molenbeek district of Brussels, after raids in which several people, including Salah Abdeslam, one of the perpetrators of the November 2015 Paris attacks, were arrested on March 18, 2016. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

The French acronym of Belgium's ISLAM Party stands for "Integrity, Solidarity, Liberty, Authenticity, Morality". The leaders of the ISLAM Party apparently want to turn Belgium into an Islamic State. They call it "Islamist democracy" and have set a target date: 2030.

According to the French magazine Causeur, "the program is confusingly simple: replace all the civil and penal codes with sharia law. Period". Created on the eve of the 2012 municipal ballot, the ISLAM Party immediately received impressive results. Its numbers are alarming.

The effect of this new party, according to Michaël Privot, an expert on Islam, and Sebastien Boussois, a political scientist, could be the "implosion of the social body". Some Belgian politicians, such as Richard Miller, are now advocating banning the ISLAM Party.

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The Love Affair with Syria's Dictator

by Majid Rafizadeh  •  April 22, 2018 at 4:30 am

  • Finally, a world leader, President Donald Trump, took a stance against the war criminal who rules Syria. Instead of supporting that action, however, many people have been attacking Trump for the clear message he sent Bashar Assad: He cannot use illegal weapons to target civilians and enjoy immunity.

  • Whoever appeases Assad and legitimizes his actions should be aware that they are complicit in crimes against humanity.

Pictured: Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Ca.), then Speaker of the US House of Representatives, meets with Syrian President Bashar Assad in 2007. (Image source: AP video screenshot)

Many people claim to champion the pursuit of justice and the defense of human rights around the globe. If there is an opportunity for them to make promises, they will. But when a true need arises, when their voices and rallying could make a genuine difference, many of those promises prove false.

Recently, Syria's dictator, President Bashar Al Assad, attacked his own people with banned chemical weapons -- at least 50 times. The victims were mainly civilians. Innocent people -- men, women and children -- were suffocated by these attacks, but not before burning their eyes and drowning their lungs in fluid.

Finally, a world leader, US President Donald Trump, took a stance against this war criminal. Instead of supporting that action, however, many people have been attacking Trump for the clear message he sent Assad: He cannot use illegal weapons to target civilians and enjoy immunity.

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Syria: The Defining Issue of Our Generation

by Amir Taheri  •  April 22, 2018 at 4:00 am

  • How could we not understand that in the anti-war coalition's Manichaean world, the role of evil was reserved solely for the Western democracies?

  • Over the past decade or so, Russia has waged war against Georgia in Ossetia and Abkhazia, attacked Ukraine, annexed the Crimean Peninsula, turned Chechnya into a pile of rubble and driven thousands out of their villages in Ingushetia and Dagestan without the "anti-war coalition" waving a single placard.

  • So what we have is a "lukewarm war" in which Russia's assets consist mainly of the anti-West constituencies inside Western democracies plus the veto power that Russia has in the United Nations Security Council.

Pictured: Russian soldiers in Aleppo, Syria. (Image source: Russia Ministry of Defense/Wikimedia Commons)

"We are here to protest against the bombing of Syria by Donald Trump and Theresa May," said the placard-waving young man sporting a ferocious beard.

"Killing Muslims must be stopped," added the middle-aged lady dressed all in black with a demeanor of a diva.

Our interlocutors were among a handful of activists from the "anti-war coalition," spending part of their weekend venting their hatred of Trump and America, and presumably of capitalism and imperialism in general, in front of the US Embassy in London.

We asked whether they would also demonstrate in front of the Russian Embassy in Bayswater, a posher part of London?

The answer was a chagrined look all around. How could we not understand that in their Manichaean world, the role of evil was reserved solely for the Western democracies?

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A Month of Islam and Multiculturalism in Germany: March 2018

by Soeren Kern  •  April 21, 2018 at 5:00 am

  • Anti-Semitism is running rampant at German primary schools, according to Heinz-Peter Meidinger, president of the President of the German Teachers' Association (Deutschen Lehrerverbandes, DL). He also said that videos of beheadings are commonplace at German schools, and that female pupils are being threatened with murder. "In chat forums like WhatsApp, movies such as ISIS beheading videos are spreading like wildfire."

  • "It is unacceptable that non-Muslim and above all Jewish children have to be afraid of going to school in this country because they are being labeled as 'unbelievers' and even threatened with death.... Since autumn... Kuwait Airways is allowed to discriminate against Jews at Frankfurt Airport, and the Federal Government does not object. Let us not fool ourselves: it is the Federal Government, which, for inexplicable reasons, allows Jews in Germany to be treated like this." — Julian Reichelt, Editor-in-Chief of Bild.

  • "Mass gatherings that degenerate into violence are incompatible with our understanding of democracy. Humanity, tolerance, respect and dealing with each other in a democratic way are the basic values ​​on which our coexistence is oriented. We all want to live in a peaceful, open and democratic society." — Sören Link, Mayor of Duisburg.

The Spreewald Elementary School in Berlin's Schöneberg district (pictured above) hired security guards to protect teachers and students from unruly students. Around 99% of the pupils at the school have a migration background. (Image source: Fridolin Freudenfett/Wikimedia Commons)

March 1. The Spreewald Elementary School in Berlin's Schöneberg district hired security guards to protect teachers and students from unruly students. Around 99% of the pupils at the school have a migration background. "Within the past year, the violence has increased so much that we now had to take this measure," said headmaster Doris Unzeit. "The violence is widespread and we want to take countermeasures with the security service. This should improve the reputation of the school and ensure that the children can learn here again in peace."

March 2. A 41-year-old Syrian, Abu Marwan, stabbed to death his 37-year-old wife in Mühlacker. The couple's three children, a girl and two boys, witnessed the murder. It later emerged that immediately after the killing, the blood-stained man posted a video on Facebook warning women not to irritate their husbands: "This is how you'll end."

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