Latest Analysis and Commentary

Why Palestinians Owe Arabs an Apology

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  November 26, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • The Palestinian decision to renew ties with Israel comes at a time when the Palestinian media is continuing to condemn other Arabs for engaging in normalization with Israel.

  • "They [the Palestinians] were trampling on the pictures of our leaders. But we have not seen them trampling on the pictures of Abbas." — Emirati social media user BintUAE1900, Twitter, November 18, 2020.

  • Several Palestinians and Arabs took to social media to demand sarcastically that the PA withdraw its ambassador from Ramallah to protest its own decision to "normalize" relations with Israel.

  • The PA leadership's decision to restore ties with Israel and return the Palestinian ambassadors to the UAE and Bahrain is viewed by some Palestinians as an apparent attempt to cozy up to a possible new US administration under the presumptive new President-elect Joe Biden. Abbas is also likely hoping that in return, the US and some Gulf states will resume pouring money into the PA coffers -- for a start.

Will the Palestinian leadership apologize to Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates for accusing them of betraying the Palestinians and Arabs by signing peace agreements with Israel? Pictured: Palestinians in Ramallah burn pictures of UAE Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, on August 15, 2020. (Photo by Abbas Momani/AFP via Getty Images)

Will the Palestinian leadership apologize to Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for accusing them of betraying the Palestinians and Arabs by signing peace agreements with Israel?

Last week, the Palestinian Authority (PA), led by President Mahmoud Abbas, in a surprise move, announced that it has decided to restore all relations with Israel, including security coordination between the PA security forces and the Israel Defense Forces in the West Bank.

Abbas also owes Palestinians an apology because his decision to sever ties with Israel deprived Palestinian patients -- except for another prominent Palestinian leader, Saeb Erekat -- from receiving medical treatment in Israel. The decision also deprived thousands of Palestinians from receiving full salaries: Abbas had refused to accept tax revenues collected by Israel on behalf of the Palestinians.

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Bribed: Subverting American Universities

by Raymond Ibrahim  •  November 25, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • More than one-third of the nearly $20 billion in foreign donations and contracts made to American universities between just 2014 and 2020 were never disclosed as required by federal law, according to "Institutional Compliance with Section 117 of the Higher Education Act of 1965," a Department of Education report released on October 20, 2020.

  • Among those "gifts" were more than $3 billion from the Muslim Brotherhood's number one state backer, Qatar; more than $1.1 billion from the chief disseminator of "radical" Islamic ideology, Saudi Arabia; and nearly $1.5 billion from China.

  • The reason U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East has traditionally tended towards disaster may partly be -- in addition to the elixir of wishful thinking -- because policymakers and the advisors and analysts on whom they rely are products of programs in which benefactors are hostile to the United States.

(Image source: iStock)

A recent governmental report exposes the "purchased" influence foreign nations have on America's most prestigious universities and, as a result, on what America's current and upcoming generations of analysts and policymakers will think and believe.

More than one-third of the nearly $20 billion in foreign donations and contracts made to American universities between just 2014 and 2020 were never disclosed as required by federal law, according to "Institutional Compliance with Section 117 of the Higher Education Act of 1965," a Department of Education report released on October 20, 2020.

Among those "gifts" were more than $3 billion from the Muslim Brotherhood's number one state backer, Qatar; more than $1.1 billion from the chief disseminator of "radical" Islamic ideology, Saudi Arabia; and nearly $1.5 billion from China.

According to the report:

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What a Biden Administration Means for Border Security

by Chris Farrell  •  November 24, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • "Whenever Obama was in there, drug cartels were so bad that it didn't seem like anybody was fighting the drug cartels... the cartels ruled everything. They ran the dope, they trafficked the young girls, and there were so many more killings." — Border resident, US Southwest.

  • "Trump had more Customs and Border Patrol agents at the border. Cattle crossings from Mexico were checked, inspected and limited. The cartels have used cattle to move dope for years. Now they'll go back to moving cattle and laundering money back through the crossing here [Santa Teresa, NM] with less law enforcement. It will be a serious step backwards." — Border resident, US Southwest.

  • The Americans paying the very high price for Biden/Harris reckless open borders policy are in border communities. Biden's reversals spell doom for overloaded (and closed) hospitals, schools, public housing, and courts. Remember: Biden (and the rest of the Democratic presidential field) promised free healthcare to all illegal aliens.

  • U.S. Customs Service Officer Patricia Cramer, president of the Arizona chapter of the National Treasury Employees Union, revealed in an interview that persons crossing into the United States from Mexico are not health-screened in any way. No temperature taken, no cursory visual exam, nothing.

  • Remember: In "COVID-world," you cannot go to the gym, and you must "social distance" in absurd ways -- but the border is open, and no one is screened.

In "COVID-world," you cannot go to the gym, and you must "social distance" in absurd ways -- but the border is open, and no one is screened. Pictured: A fence on the border of Sunland Park, New Mexico, and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. (Photo by Paul Ratje/AFP via Getty Images)

A Biden administration means two dramatic and dangerous reversals on Trump policies that will endanger the American public: 1. Termination of President Trump's signature 2016 campaign issue -- The Wall; and 2. Loosening of immigration restrictions.

"There will not be another foot of wall constructed on my administration, No. 1," Biden told National Public Radio earlier this year. "I'm going to make sure that we have border protection, but it's going to be based on making sure that we use high-tech capacity to deal with it."

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Cooperate with China or World War 3: Kissinger

by Gordon G. Chang  •  November 23, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • [I]n a little over 14 minutes Kissinger managed to totally misinterpret Chinese history, support Beijing's most important foreign policy goal, and give deeply misguided advice to Joe Biden. Kissinger has evidently learned nothing from years of dangerous Chinese behavior, which is partly the result of his policy formulations.

  • China's troubled past, in short, is an excuse. What, after all, is it in history that justifies present-day Chinese aggression against India, Bhutan and Nepal, or its designs on Tajikistan, the Philippines and Malaysia? Moreover, what justification is there for the Communist Party's declaration of a "people's war" on the United States in May of last year?

  • Xi Jinping, the one man in China's system, is now propagating the audacious concept of tianxia, that "all under heaven" owe allegiance to Beijing.

  • There are, unfortunately, some points in history when dialogue makes matters worse because hardline leaders perceive others' desire to talk as a sign of weakness.

  • What is the best indication that Kissinger is wrong? Beijing at the moment is waging a concerted propaganda campaign to push his views as widely as possible. When your enemy wants you to do something, it is almost always not in your interest.

China is aggressive and militant at this moment because of the nature of its communist regime, which is quickly driving the country back to one-man rule and totalitarianism. Xi Jinping, the one man in China's system, is now propagating the audacious concept of tianxia, that "all under heaven" owe allegiance to Beijing. (Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

"I would think we need first of all a dialogue with the Chinese leadership in which we are defining what we're attempting to prevent and in which the two leaders agree that whatever other conflicts they have they will not resort to military conflict," Henry Kissinger told Bloomberg News Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait on November 16 at the Bloomberg New Economy Forum. "Unless there is some basis for some cooperative action, the world will slide into a catastrophe comparable to World War I."

Of course no one wants war of any type with China, but in a little over 14 minutes Kissinger managed to totally misinterpret Chinese history, support Beijing's most important foreign policy goal, and give deeply misguided advice to Joe Biden. Kissinger has evidently learned nothing from years of dangerous Chinese behavior, which is partly the result of his policy formulations.

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Are the American Media Legitimizing Terror Attacks in France?

by Giulio Meotti  •  November 22, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • "In certain districts and on the internet, groups... are teaching hatred of the republic to our children, calling on them to disregard its laws. That is what I called 'separatism' .... If you do not believe me, read the social media postings of hatred... that resulted in Paty's death. Visit the districts where small girls aged three or four are wearing a full veil, separated from boys, and, from a very young age, separated from the rest of society, raised in hatred of France's values". — French President Emmanuel Macron, Financial Times, November 1, 2020.

  • "I am for the respect of cultures, civilizations, but I am not going to change my law because it is shocking elsewhere". — Emmanuel Macron.

  • According to a US journalist, Thomas Chatterton Williams, "'knife attack' as a description of beheading is so euphemistic that it is in fact a form of violence against language itself".

  • It seems that the Anglophone media live in a world deaf to reality and based on imaginary victimization; they see racism where there is none, and they do not even know what to name it when it appears in the French streets to behead a teacher.

  • It is apparently, however, out of the fear of being called a "racist" -- not even of being murdered like Samuel Paty -- that they choose self-censorship. Not to appear as cowards, they call it "respect".... Are the American media, one wonders, expecting any reciprocity?

  • It is no coincidence that, in the name of "diversity", the American media in the last year have hunted and bullied journalists such as James Bennett and Bari Weiss, who resigned from the New York Times.

France's President Emmanuel Macron recently said in an interview: "Alignment with American multiculturalism is a form of defeatist thought... Our model is universalist and not multiculturalist... You should not care if someone is black, yellow or white; first, they are citizens...." (Photo by Ludovic Marin/AFP via Getty Images)

The Financial Times has never understood France grappling with extremist Muslim terrorism and the country's battle for freedom of expression. After the Charlie Hebdo massacre in 2015, Tony Barber wrote in the Financial Times that the massacred journalists and cartoonists had been "stupid". The article was then edited.

It recently happened again. The British newspaper removed an article on French President Emmanuel Macron's anti-Islamist policies. The article, "Macron's war on Islamic separatism only divides France further", by Mehreen Khan, appeared in the online version of the newspaper and was then also removed. The piece argued that after two beheadings in Yvelines and Nice, Macron would need six million Muslims in the country to eradicate violent extremism, but that instead, he chose to feed "moral panic". Clearly, the article postulated, if there are Islamist attacks in France, it must be because its president has been looking for them.

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Caucasus: Clash of Imperial Dreams

by Amir Taheri  •  November 22, 2020 at 4:00 am

  • To start with, the mini-victory he [Erdogan] has won against Armenia may have whetted Erdogan's appetite for further conquests. Pro-Erdogan papers in Turkey are beating the drums about "victory in the Caucasus" as the first time, since the end of the Ottoman Empire, that Turks have managed to "liberate" a chunk of Islamdom from "infidel" rule.

  • Worse still for Putin, Erdogan has already indicated he wants to involve his Foreign Legion of Jihadis in protecting "Muslim lands".

  • By mixing his Muslim Brotherhood jihadism with pan-Turkic themes that recall Enver Pasha, Erdogan hopes to replace the Ataturk narrative with a new narrative of religious nationalism.

  • It is no accident that he is also sharpening his anti-West rhetoric and tightening ties with the Grey Wolves, a pan-Turkish outfit banned by the European Union as a "terrorist organization." The "Grey Wolves" dream of a Turkic empire stretching from the Balkans to Central Asia.

The mini-victory that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has won against Armenia may have whetted his appetite for further conquests. Pro-Erdogan papers in Turkey are beating the drums about "victory in the Caucasus" as the first time, since the end of the Ottoman Empire, that Turks have managed to "liberate" a chunk of Islamdom from "infidel" rule. Pictured: Erdogan (right) with Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev on April 25, 2018 in Ankara, Turkey. (Photo by Turkish President Press Office via Getty Images)

As the dust settles after the latest fighting in Transcaucasia we may be witnessing the shaping of a bigger disaster involving more parts of the Western Asian arch of instability spanning from the Caspian Basin to the Mediterranean.

Let's briefly recall what happened.

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US Urgently Needs to Challenge China's Chokehold on Rare Earth Materials

by Lawrence A. Franklin  •  November 21, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • The Chinese Communist Party's near monopoly on most of these 17 rare earth materials (REM) is by now a US national security vulnerability of enormous strategic importance.... China's October 13 decision to curtail the export of these vitally needed rare earth materials should serve as an urgent warning to the U.S. to begin developing an independent supply chain of these materials.

  • The Defense Department has not acted with the sense of urgency demanded by the president.... Consequently, if US-China relations plummet to the point where conflict appears imminent, America's military would be disadvantaged should the Chinese decide to sever exports of REM to the US market.

  • The US would do well... by quickly decoupling its economy from dependency on China for rare earth materials -- and if possible, from everything else.

Pictured: Mined ore containing rare earth materials on display in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia, China. (Image source: Brücke-Osteuropa/Wikimedia Commons)

One of China's most significant advantages in the race to dominate future hi-tech industrial production, among just about everything else, is its chokehold on "rare earth materials" (REM). These are materials -- and the raw minerals from which they are extracted and processed -- vital to the manufacture, for instance, of advanced weapons, fossil-free alternative energy systems, communication devices, computer products, and microelectronic networks.

It is an area in which China has already established dominance . The Chinese Communist Party's near monopoly on most of these 17 rare earth materials is by now a US national security vulnerability of enormous strategic importance. China's October 13 decision to curtail the export of these vitally needed rare earth materials should serve as an urgent warning to the US to seriously begin developing an independent supply chain of these materials.

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The Cancel Culture Moves Against Trump Lawyers

by Chris Farrell  •  November 20, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • Now, the Never-Trumper "Republicans" of the Lincoln Project... have dreamed up a way to self-righteously interfere with legal due process.

  • Reminder: our system of justice guarantees citizens the presumption of innocence and the ability to access the courts to address torts and grievances.

  • The larger point to consider is that should a Biden presidency come about, these sorts of tactics -- and the general, national shift to centralized government control -- will increasingly be compulsory. It is a philosophical thing. Big Government, Big Media, Big Tech, Big Medicine, Big Solutions -- all at the expense of the individual: Individual rights, individual property, personal wealth, personal privacy, individual responsibility, personal conscience. Those will all have to be compromised supposedly for the greater good -- especially if you supported Trump.

According to civil rights attorney Harmeet Dhillon (pictured), lawyers representing Republicans have received death threats and been "doxxed" by people opposing the Trump-Pence campaign's ability to lawfully challenge contentious election results. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Thanks to The Lincoln Project, attorneys at Jones Day and Porter, Wright, Morris & Arthur LLP are on "the List." What list? The List of people to be identified, catalogued, written about and punished for cooperating with Republican election campaigns. Bloomberg News reported it a week ago and we have The Lincoln Project's own Twitter feed explaining their thinking.

In their tweet announcing their project against the law firms, The Lincoln Project stated: "Whatever you think of the Administration's legal arguments, targeting the sanctity of our elections is immoral & ineffective." One wonders if they apply the same election integrity standards to themselves.

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Arabs Warn Biden: Do Not Embrace Islamists

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  November 19, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • "These observers pointed out that, behind the Council's statement, there is a Saudi message saying that the Brotherhood's rush to welcome and embrace Biden and its attempt to win his sympathy while inciting against important countries in the region will not change Saudi Arabia's steadfast position of considering the group a terrorist organization and a real incubator for all militant groups." — The Arab Weekly, November 12, 2020.

  • Abdullatif Al-Sheikh, the Saudi Minister of Islamic Affairs, responding to the Council's statement, said .... that his warning came out of concern for "our religion, our country, our citizens, and all Muslims." — Twitter, November 10, 2020.

  • The statement of the [Saudi] Council of Senior Scholars came after a long and careful study of the methodology and thinking of the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood organization, which views non-Muslims as infidels."

  • "The group's [Muslim Brotherhood's] extremism and violence are an inherent feature of its ideology, and there is no point in reforming or changing it." — Dar-Alifta.org, November 11, 2020.

  • The analysts and experts added that the world has realized that the existence of this terrorist organization represents a real threat to the identity and stability of states, and stress that the Brotherhood group does not represent the approach of Islam.

  • Several Arab political analysts and columnists, particularly in the Gulf, have voiced similar sentiments. The message they are sending to Biden and the Democrats: We do not want to go back to the bad old days when the US administration aligned itself with Islamist terrorist groups.

  • These Arabs are determined to prevent the Islamists from returning to power in Egypt or raising their heads in other Arab countries. It remains to be seen if the future US administration will cooperate in this effort.

There is a growing fear in some Arab countries that a Biden administration may return to former President Barack Obama's policy of empowering and appeasing the Muslim Brotherhood. Pictured: Then Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi (right), a Muslim Brotherhood member, meets with then US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Cairo on July 14, 2012. (Photo by Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images)

In a clear message directed to a possible US administration under Joe Biden, Saudi Arabia and Egypt have warned against supporting the Muslim Brotherhood organization. They state that it gives birth "to extremist terrorist groups who wreak havoc on the country and the people."

On November 10, Saudi Arabia's Council of Senior Scholars, the kingdom's highest Islamic religious body, issued a warning amid growing fear in some Arab countries that a Biden administration may return to former President Barack Obama's policy of empowering and appeasing the Muslim Brotherhood.

The Saudi warning was immediately endorsed by Egypt's senior Islamic religious institute, Dar al-Ifta, and prominent Egyptian writers and political analysts.

The Muslim Brotherhood, which has congratulated Biden on his disputed victory in the US presidential election, is hoping that if and when he becomes president, he will not classify the organization as a terrorist group.

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Trump's Only Road to Victory

by Alan M. Dershowitz  •  November 18, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • I just received an email asking me to sign a petition demanding the disbarment of President Trump's lawyers for their advocacy. That is McCarthyism pure and simple. Lawyers are entitled to advocate all reasonable and ethically permissible strategies that serve the interest of their client.

  • Let us remember that as a matter of law and constitutionality, Joe Biden is not yet the president-elect. He has been coronated by the media, by politicians and by most Americans. But to officially become president-elect requires, at the very least, certification by enough states to give him the 270 required electors. That has not yet occurred.

  • Biden is the presumed president-elect, the likely president, even the probable president, but he is not officially the president-elect for legal and constitutional purposes.

On several occasions in the 19th century, no candidate received enough electoral votes to win the presidency. Pictured: The Electoral Commission, comprised of House Members, Senators, and Supreme Court Justices investigates disputed Electoral College ballots after the 1876 presidential election, on February 16, 1877. The Commission awarded all the disputed ballots to Rutherford B. Hayes, who became president by a single electoral vote. (Image source: Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper via Library of Congress)

President Trump has only one road to victory, and it would require a perfect storm that at this moment seems unlikely. The goal of the Trump legal team is not to get 270 electoral votes for their client. That seems beyond the realm of all possibility. The goal is to question Vice President Biden the 270 he needs for the Electoral College to select him as president. Since this is a zero-sum game, how is it possible for Biden to be denied the 270 without Trump reaching that number?

The answer to that question provides the clue to what the Trump legal team is trying to do. If enough electoral votes are still being contested by mid-December, and if fewer than 270 electors are certified by their respective states by that date, then Biden could -- in theory -- be denied the necessary 270. If that were to happen, then the election would be thrown into the House of Representatives, as it was on several occasions in the 19th century.

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Was the US Election Stolen?

by Soeren Kern  •  November 17, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • "We're fixing to overturn the results of the elections in multiple states. President Trump won by not hundreds of thousands of votes but by millions of votes that were shifted by this software that was designed expressly for that purpose. We have sworn witness testimony of why the software was designed — it was designed to rig elections." — Sidney Powell, a former federal prosecutor and a member of President Trump's legal team.

  • "It's the software that was the problem. Even their own manual explains how votes can be wiped away, it's like drag and drop Trump votes into a separate folder and then delete that folder." — Sidney Powell.

  • "They can stick a thumb drive in the machine or upload software to it, even from the internet, they can do it from Germany or Venezuela even. They can remote access anything, they can watch votes in real time, they can shift votes in real time. We've identified mathematically the exact algorithm they used and planned to use from the beginning to modify the votes — in this case to make sure Biden won. That's why he said he didn't need your votes now, he would need you later." — Sidney Powell.

  • "The software that they use is done by a company called Smartmatic. It's a company that was founded by Hugo Chávez, and by his two allies who still own it. It's been used to cheat in elections in South America. It was banned by the United States about a decade ago. It's come back now as a subcontractor to other companies to sort of hide in the weeds." — Rudy Giuliani, President Trump's personal attorney.

  • "Finally, if you want to get down to the votes, let's pick Pennsylvania. We have identified 632,000 illegal votes. It's enough to have the president win the state by 300,000, which is actually what he won it by, if you get that Smartmatic machine out." — Rudy Giuliani.

  • "What we're seeing is that possibly up to 2.7 million votes were simply deleted, that were for President Trump. How their voting system was able to have users that would log in and see the votes as they were coming in. If it was a Trump vote they could manually change it to a Biden vote. They could duplicate the vote if it was a Biden vote, and have a person cast not one but six votes for Biden. All of this technology, we really need a forensic audit." — Jenna Ellis, Trump Campaign lawyer.

  • "Ten years ago, I was part of the first academic team to conduct a comprehensive security analysis of a DRE [direct-recording electronic] voting machine. We examined what was at that time the most widely used touch-screen DRE in the country, and spent several months probing it for vulnerabilities. What we found was disturbing: we could reprogram the machine to invisibly cause any candidate to win. We also created malicious software — vote-stealing code — that could spread from machine-to-machine like a computer virus, and silently change the election outcome." — Alex Halderman, professor of computer science and engineering at the University of Michigan

  • "The concerns about possible ties between the owners of Smartmatic and the Chávez government have been well known to United States foreign-policy officials since before the 2004 recall election in which Mr. Chávez, a strong ally of President Fidel Castro of Cuba, won by an official margin of nearly 20 percent." — The New York Times, October 29, 2006

(Image source: iStock)

Reports are pouring in of massive corruption and fraud in the 2020 U.S. presidential elections. The allegations run the gamut from ballot harvesting to rigged software, from duplicate voting to voting by deceased people, from outdated voter rolls to failing to match signatures, and from voter intimidation to altering the vote count. Whistleblowers in several states have signed affidavits that allege criminal activity during the voting process.

Lawyers for U.S. President Donald J. Trump have filed more than 20 legal challenges in several states and have called for recounts in others. U.S. Attorney General William Barr has authorized federal prosecutors to probe alleged irregularities.

Arguably the most explosive fraud claims involve ballot tabulators manufactured by a Colorado-based company called Dominion Voting Systems that allegedly changed hundreds of thousands of votes from President Trump to Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

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Europe's Lax Security Aids Islamist Terrorists

by Con Coughlin  •  November 16, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • "I expect an end to the misconceived tolerance, and for all the nations of Europe to finally realise how dangerous the ideology of political Islam is for our freedom and the European way of life." — Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, Die Welt, November 3, 2020.

  • "We see very clearly that terrorist actions can actually be led by some people who use migratory flows to threaten our territory." — French President Emmanuel Macron, Politico, November 5, 2020.

  • For once, the sudden upsurge in terror attacks appears to have prompted European leaders to acknowledge the glaring deficiencies in their ability to protect Europe against Islamist-inspired acts of terrorism.

The belated realisation by Europe's leaders about the inadequacies of their ability to defend the continent from further acts of Islamist-inspired terrorism is as welcome as it is long overdue. Pictured: Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz (left) and French President Emmanuel Macron attend a summit addressing an EU-wide response to recent terror attacks. (Photo by Michel Euler/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)

The latest wave of Islamist-inspired terror attacks to strike Europe has yet again exposed lamentable flaws in the ability of European security agencies to provide adequate protection for their citizens.

In all three instances -- the attacks in Paris, Nice and Vienna -- it has emerged that those held responsible for carrying out the attacks had links to global jihadi networks that went undetected by European security officials.

Moreover, the ease with which some of those involved in the attacks were able to travel freely across the continent has once more raised concerns about Europe's lax border controls as defined by the European Union's Schengen Agreement, and the ability of radicalised jihadis to exploit them.

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Showdown in the Western Sahara

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  November 15, 2020 at 7:00 am

  • Presently, the Polisario Front appears to be trying to create "facts on the ground" outside of any legal framework, presumably in the hope that the international community will view them as irreversible.

  • International help would be greatly appreciated to prevent this showdown in the Sahara from escalating further.

A member of the United Nations peace mission MINURSO at a UN base in Bir-Lahlou, in the Western Sahara, on March 5, 2016. (Photo by Farouk Batiche/AFP via Getty Images)

While much of the world was looking the other way, distracted by China's coronavirus and its economic aftermath, a separatist militia group backed by Algeria, the Polisario Front, have been militarily exploiting the crisis.

For weeks, the Polisario Front have blocked the only road leading southward from Morocco to Mauritania in the buffer zone of Guerguerat. Currently, around 200 trucks find themselves stranded there, while UN peacekeepers (MINURSO), on whom Morocco relies to enforce the tense 30-year ceasefire, apparently feel overwhelmed.

Ever since Spain withdrew from its former colony in the Western Sahara in 1975, the Polisario Front have been trying to claim the territory, rich with phosphates and fishing rights, as an independent state for themselves. Since that time, however, Morocco has served as the sole sovereign, offering the Western Sahara autonomy but not independence.

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Britain: Two-Stepping Toward Totalitarianism

by Andrew Ash  •  November 15, 2020 at 5:00 am

  • It has become an almost daily occurrence to find news stories of parents being 'called out' by their newly politicised children for expressing on social media 'wrong', 'unwoke' views, or of people being fired for something they may or may not have said years ago.

  • This sense of entitlement has come to characterise a group whose younger demographic seem to have no comprehension of the horrors of a war -- or indeed, of many authentic hardships -- in their own relatively comfortable lives.

  • This lack of respect for, or understanding of, history, along with an apparent need to invent, import, or re-animate grievances from the past, then lead these protestors to advocate inflicting what they decide is the appropriate revenge for a grievance on people who have had no part in causing it.

  • Tolerance is to be expected only from others.... One man's freedom, it seems, has become another man's cause for resentment.

  • The protestors' dismissal of British heritage, a bid to 'cancel' history, appears a threat to the nation. We supposedly have nothing to be proud of. Our achievements have presumably been little more than the spoils of an evil, bigoted patriarchal system. These malcontents, by pledging allegiance to the Marxist architects of that narrative, not only insult the memory of those who have fought and died for the freedoms we now take for granted; they are also two-stepping towards totalitarianism.

When the statue of Winston Churchill in London's Parliament Square was vandalised, the police, evidently held hostage to political correctness, stood by and watched as their role was publicly undermined by open disregard for the law. (Photo by Isabel Infantes/AFP via Getty Images)

There was a time when the British were known for their stoicism, their ability to battle through hardship, no matter the odds. The so called 'blitz spirit' of eighty years ago, that saw the nation 'pull together and carry on', regardless of the Nazi bombardment of our cities, characterised a generation that had suffered two world wars yet could not be bowed.

During the Covid pandemic, however, this 'blitz spirit' has been noticeably absent. There has been certainly very little in the way of a nation pulling together; in its place, there has been just a lot of bickering, mud-slinging and name calling-among politicians, activists, and the increasingly fragmented populace.

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Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks

November 15, 2020 at 4:30 am

(Photo by Ben Stansall/AFP via Getty Images)

All of us at Gatestone Institute mourn the untimely passing of Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks. He was an intellectual and spiritual giant of our generation and beyond. His reach was global and his message was for all faiths. He believed passionately in the Dignity of Difference and was the moral voice of our time.

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