Latest Analysis and Commentary

German Election: Merkel's Pyrrhic Victory
"Ms. Merkel is in effect a lame duck."

by Soeren Kern  •  September 26, 2017 at 5:00 am

  • "Angela Merkel has ruled this country for twelve years. She has imposed a debt burden of billions on the Germans to protect the southern part of Europe from collapsing and to implement her idea of ​​a European community. She has shaken the German energy industry to save the world's climate. And she has opened the gates of the country to hundreds of thousands of refugees because she considered it a humanitarian obligation. She also changed the traditional notion of marriage, as marriage of husband and wife, just like that...." — Tagesspiegel.

  • "We will reclaim our country and our people." — Alexander Gauland, a former CDU official who is now co-chairman of the Alternative for Germany party (AfD).

  • "The reality is that as of today, September 24, Ms. Merkel is in effect a lame duck." — Handelsblatt.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaks to the media in Berlin on September 25, the day after her CDU/CSU party alliance won first place with 32.9% of the vote -- its worst electoral result in nearly 70 years. (Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images)

Chancellor Angela Merkel has won a fourth term in office, but the real winner of the German election on September 24 was the Alternative for Germany, an upstart party that harnessed widespread anger over Merkel's decision to allow into the country more than a million mostly Muslim migrants from Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

Preliminary election results show that Merkel's center-right CDU/CSU alliance won around 33% of the vote, its worst electoral result in nearly 70 years. Merkel's main challenger, Martin Schulz and his center-left SPD, won 20.5%, the party's worst-ever showing.

The nationalist Alternative for Germany (AfD) won around 13% to become the country's third-largest party, followed by the classical liberal Free Democrats (FDP) with 10.7%, the far-left Linke party with 9.2% and the environmentalist Greens with 8.9%.

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A Jewish-Catholic Partnership against Islamist Violence?

by Lawrence A. Franklin  •  September 26, 2017 at 4:00 am

  • The Pope's failure vociferously to denounce Islam-based violence concerns many among both Church hierarchy and lay people.

  • The pope's statements regarding Islam and his refusal directly to discuss mounting Christian martyrdom in Muslim lands defy credulity. Whether his words are willful blindness, innocent naiveté, or intellectual ignorance of the nature of Islam itself, it is confusing many of the faithful.

  • One moderate Muslim leader, Yahya Cholil Staquf, head of Indonesia's Nahdlatul Ulama, said that Westerners "should stop pretending that extremism and terrorism have nothing to do with Islam."

Pictured: Pope Francis visits the Great Synagogue of Rome on January 17, 2016. (Photo by Franco Origlia/Getty Images)

The Chief Rabbinates of world Jewry apparently want to partner with the Vatican to combat radical Islam. In a recent letter, they proposed a formal alliance between Judaism and Catholicism, calling "upon the [Catholic] Church to join us in deepening our combat against our generation's new barbarism, namely the radical offshoots of Islam."

This extraordinary alliance would unite Orthodox Jewry and the Holy See against their common enemy, jihadist Islam. The Rabbinates' letter identifies "the very real danger facing many Christians in the Middle East and elsewhere as they are persecuted and menaced by violence and death at the hands of those who invoke God's Name in vain through violence and terror."

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Palestinian 'Reconciliation': Jihad is Calling!

by Bassam Tawil  •  September 25, 2017 at 5:00 am

  • Leaders of Hamas maintain that under no circumstances will they agree to lay down their weapons. Hamas is, in fact, continuing full-speed-ahead digging tunnels under the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel. Hamas is planning to use the tunnels to smuggle armed terrorists into Israel.

  • The accord with Hamas requires Mahmoud Abbas to lift the sanctions he recently imposed on the Gaza Strip, such as refusing to pay Israel for the electricity it supplies to Gaza. It also requires Abbas to resume payment of salaries to thousands of Palestinians who served time in Israeli prison for terror-related offenses.

  • Above all, Hamas wants to use the agreement to be removed from the U.S. State Department List of Foreign Terror Organizations.

  • The Russians are closing their ears to what Hamas itself declares day after day: that its true goal is to eliminate Israel and that it has no intention of abandoning its murderous, genocidal agenda.

Pictured: On October 17, 2013, then U.S. Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro visited a tunnel penetrating Israel from Gaza, which had been discovered by the Israeli army. Shapiro said: "I was shocked from what I saw in the tunnel. It is clear that this tunnel has only one purpose: to carry out terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians and IDF soldiers." (Image source: Matty Stern/U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv)

The Palestinian terror group Hamas has once again made clear that its true intention is to pursue the fight against Israel until the "liberation of Palestine, from the (Jordan) river to the (Mediterranean) sea." Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, says that despite the latest "reconciliation" agreement reached with the Palestinian Authority (PA) under the auspices of the Egyptian government, it will continue to prepare for war with Israel.

While some Western analysts have misinterpreted the agreement as a sign that Hamas is moving towards moderation and pragmatism, leaders of the Islamist movement maintain that under no circumstances will they agree to lay down their weapons. Hamas is, in fact, continuing full-speed-ahead digging tunnels under the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel. Hamas is planning to use the tunnels to smuggle armed terrorists into Israel.

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Islamists Responsible for Rohingya Refugee Crisis

by Mohshin Habib  •  September 25, 2017 at 4:00 am

  • The current crisis is being depicted -- wrongly -- as the "ethnic cleansing" of an innocent Muslim minority by Burma's security forces, and the "apathy" to the plight of the Rohingyas by Aung San Suu Kyi, Burma's foreign minister and its de facto head of state.

  • "Their [the Rohingyas'] tactics are terrorism. There's no question about it. [Kyi is] not calling the entire Rohingya population terrorists, she is referring to a group of people who are going around with guns, machetes, and IEDs and killing their own people in addition to Buddhists, Hindus, and others that get in their way. They have killed a lot of security forces, and they are wreaking havoc in the region. The people who are running and fleeing out to Bangladesh... are fleeing their own radical groups.... [T]he international community has to sort out the facts before making accusations." — Patricia Clapp, Chief of the U.S. Mission to Myanmar from 1999 to 2002.

  • The origins of the Bengali Muslim jihad in Western Myanmar in the late 19th century through the World War II era, illustrates that it is "rooted in Islam's same timeless institution of expansionist jihad which eliminated Buddhist civilization in northern India." — Dr. Andrew Bostom, author and scholar of Islam.

Rohingya refugees from Burma arrive in Bangladesh, on September 17, 2017. The current crisis is being depicted -- wrongly -- as the "ethnic cleansing" of an innocent Muslim minority, but the true culprits are radical Islamists among the Rohingyas themselves, who with guns, machetes and bombs are killing their own people, in addition to Buddhists, Hindus, and others that get in their way. (Photo by Allison Joyce/Getty Images)

A surge in clashes between Islamist terrorists and the government of Burma (Myanmar) is at the root of a refugee crisis in Southeast Asia that has caused the United Nations and international media to focus attention on the Rohingyas in the northern Rakhine, an isolated province in the west of the Buddhist-majority country.

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Europe: The Great White Death?

by Drieu Godefridi  •  September 24, 2017 at 5:00 am

  • It will take only 30 to 40 years for the Muslim population to become the majority in Europe. — Charles Gave, French financier, website of the Institut des Libertés.

  • What is of concern, is that there is a sub-group of the European population which is in the process of very efficiently wiping itself out of existence.

  • That uttering this truth causes such mayhem and furious condemnations in the media reveals that in Europe, not only is the "native" population dying, but free speech as well.

(Image source: Eric Chan/Wikimedia Commons)

A riveting -- thanks to its subject -- paper was posted the September 4, 2017 on the website of "Institut des Libertés," the think tank of the great French financier Charles Gave. In it, he asks: Does the native population -- by which he means the white population -- of Europe face extinction?

His answer is "yes": "It is not good or bad. IT IS", Gave writes. His basic argument is that with a "native" rate of fertility of 1.4, a "migrant" -- by which he means Muslim -- rate of 3.4 to 4 children per woman, and taking the initial Muslim population to be 10% of the total, it will take only 30 to 40 years for the Muslim population to become the majority. Indeed, writes Gave, with a "native" rate of 1.4 for a population of 100, after only two generations you merely see 42 "native" children born.

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The Kurdish Referendum Imbroglio

by Amir Taheri  •  September 24, 2017 at 4:00 am

Massoud Barzani, president of the autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government. (Image source: U.S. Department of Defense)

What is the first thing you should do when you have dug yourself into a hole? The obvious answer is: stop digging. This is the advice that those involved in the imbroglio over the so-called independence referendum in Iraqi Kurdistan, due to be held on September 25. But still in the suspense of writing this column, would do well to heed.

The idea of holding a referendum on so contentious an issue at this time is bizarre, to say the least. There was no popular demand for it. Nor could those who proposed it show which one of Iraq's problems such a move might solve at this moment. In other words, the move was unnecessary, in the sense that Talleyrand meant when he said that, in politics, doing what is not necessary is worse than making a mistake.

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Sweden: What You Won't See in This Book...

by Bruce Bawer  •  September 23, 2017 at 5:00 am

  • What won't you see in this book? You won't see a picture of Muslim "morality police" patrolling neighborhoods and controlling women's conduct. You won't see Muslim men cutting in front of Swedish women in queues and then calling them "whores" when they protest.

  • One of Sweden's former prime ministers, Fredrik Reinfeldt, pronounced with approval in December 2014 that the future of Sweden belonged not to ethnic Swedes but to immigrants.

Riot police in Gothenburg, Sweden. (Photo by Sion Touhig/Getty Images)

Speaking at a rally in Melbourne, Florida, on February 18, President Trump mentioned recent terrorist attacks in Nice, Paris, and Brussels, and then said:

"You look at what's happening in Germany, you look at what's happening last night in Sweden. Sweden, who would believe this. Sweden. They took in large numbers. They're having problems like they never thought possible."

Nothing major had happened the night before in Sweden, except that the country has taken in armies of Muslims, and as a result is descending into social and economic disaster.

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Plame Knew What She Was Tweeting

by Alan M. Dershowitz  •  September 22, 2017 at 7:57 pm

Valerie Plame, who retweeted an anti-Semitic article and called it "thoughtful." Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Valerie Plame had to know what she was tweeting. Plame retweeted a virulently anti-Semitic article by a well-known bigot, which she characterized as "thoughtful." Now she's trying to make excuses, but they don't wash.

The article by Phillip Giraldi itself contains the usual anti-Semitic tropes: Jews are guilty of dual loyalty; they control politicians, the media and entertainment; they want the US to fight wars for the country to which they have real allegiance-- Israel; they are dangerous to America. Giraldi has been pushing this garbage for years and Plame is one of his fans.

But this particular article goes much further in its neo-Nazi imagery. It advocates that the

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Europe: Muslim Reformers Need Police Protection

by Giulio Meotti  •  September 22, 2017 at 5:00 am

  • Seyran Ates, a moderate imam, has received "300 emails per day encouraging me to carry on," but "3,000 a day full of hate," some with death threats.

  • In Germany, it is not the Muslim supremacists, such as those who preach killing homosexuals, who have to live under police protection; it is the Muslims who criticize the supremacists. The only "crime" these concerned Muslims committed was to exercise their democratic right to speak -- not in Iran or Syria or Iraq -- but in Europe.

  • These reformers try to keep alive the values of the Enlightenment -- freedom of speech, separation of religion and state, equal justice under law -- to break through the coerced silence of Islam, in which "blasphemy" is punishable by death. The price, however, has been exile, torture, ostracism, public marginalization, and too often life itself. Where are the "moderate Muslims"? In the Muslim world, they are in prison, in exile, in flight. In Europe, these genuine "moderate Muslims" have to live under police protection. Multiculturalism for them is a prison.

Berlin's Seyran Ates, an imam who preaches a genuinely "moderate Islam", needs around-the-clock police guards to protect her from fundamentalist Islamists. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

Abdelbaki Essati, the imam the authorities believe was at the center of terrorist attacks in and around Barcelona, was apparently a master of deception -- "too polite, too correct". He was apparently able to deceive European intelligence services by preaching a "moderate" version of Islam, while at the same time, orchestrating deadly jihadist attacks.

Another imam in Europe, Seyran Ates, preaches a genuinely "moderate Islam" but needs around-the-clock police protection.

Ates, training to become an imam, seems to have thought there was no better place than Berlin to inaugurate her mosque, Ibn Rushd-Goethe. It is the first Islamic religious site open to unmarried women, homosexuals, atheists, Sufis, unveiled women -- all those people that many fundamentalist Islamists have said they wish to silence or kill.

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Is Germany Heading to a "September Surprise"?

by Vijeta Uniyal  •  September 22, 2017 at 4:00 am

  • Instead of hurting the AfD's electoral prospects, the smear campaign has ended up driving more voters toward the party.

  • Questioning the AfD's legitimacy on judicial and constitutional grounds has a two-pronged effect. It not only sows doubt in the minds of the undecided voters, but also scares away state employees, law enforcement officers, business owners and even law-abiding citizens from associating themselves with the AfD out of fear of government scrutiny and reprisals.

  • "I am ashamed that I am not brave enough to support the AfD publicly. But it would be professional suicide and I will never see my grandchildren again," confessed another anonymous German voter.

An AfD campaign poster. Attempts by the German government and the media to smear the far-right party appear to be backfiring. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Stay at home instead of vote for the right-wing party, Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), is the last-minute advice Chancellor Merkel's chief of staff, Peter Altmaier, is giving to voters ahead of Sunday's election in Germany.

"Better not vote than to vote for the AfD," Merkel's powerful right-hand man told the German newspaper Bild on Tuesday. "The AfD are dividing our country. They are exploiting people's fears. Therefore, I believe that a vote for the AfD cannot be justified.

"These are just a few rabble-rousers who profit from all the reporting on them," he continued, urging the media to stop covering the AfD.

After 12 years of running the country, Chancellor Merkel and her lieutenant still do not understand real democracy. In a real democracy, the voters hold the elected representatives accountable, not the other way around.

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American Islamists Turn to Ankara

by Samantha Mandeles and Samuel Westrop  •  September 21, 2017 at 4:02 pm

  • In general, lawful Islamist movements such as the Muslim Brotherhood work to insert themselves into Western society, exploiting liberal, democratic bodies to promote their own illiberal and anti-democratic ideology.

  • Whether co-opting Western democracies to silence its critics, or funding American Islamist organizations with long histories of extremism and ties to terror, the Turkish regime is now a crucial component of the global Islamist threat.

U.S. Islamist organizations have turned to the Turkish regime for collaboration and support. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

For the past few years, the international Muslim Brotherhood has found a welcoming home in Ankara in the face of opposition from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates. Consequently, U.S. Islamist organizations have also turned to the Turkish regime for collaboration and support.

On September 18th, a Washington, D.C.- based organization, the Turkish American National Steering Committee (TASC), hosted an event in New York City with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. "US-based Muslim Brotherhood supporters have a busy week coming up," the Middle East analyst Eric Trager noted. "They're hanging with Erdogan on Monday, protesting Sisi on Wednesday."

Organizers of the TASC event included Ahmed Shehata, a lobbyist for the Muslim Brotherhood who has also worked for Islamic Relief and the Muslim American Society -- two prominent Islamist groups designated as terrorist organizations by the United Arab Emirates in 2014.

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Turkey's Erdogan Tries (and Fails) to Censor an American Think Tank

by Winfield Myers  •  September 21, 2017 at 10:52 am

  • Turkey's descent into Islamist despotism distorts the NATO alliance: how can Turkey combat a external threat from without, Daniel Pipes asked, when a member state poses the same threat from within?

  • No one tells us what we can say. We are a free people, and we will act in complete freedom. – Daniel Pipes, President, Middle East Forum (MEF)

  • The purging of 120,000 government employees following last year's failed coup means that "more police counter-terrorism experts are in prison than ISIS members." A democratic Turkey is a must for NATO, both for the alliance's success and for Turkey itself. – Emre Celik, Turkish dissident, at Middle East Forum-NATO conference in Philadelphia, September 2017

  • When Celik he began to speak, the Turks -- and the NATO bureaucrats who support them -- marched out in lockstep, thereby allowing a distant despot to control their actions in the birthplace of liberty. NATO's willingness to ignore the principles it was founded to defend reveals the moral corruption at its heart....

How can NATO combat a threat from without , Daniel Pipes asked, when a member state such as Turkey poses the same threat from within? (Photo of President Erdogan: Wikimedia Commons).

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan often seems to fancy himself a world-striding figure capable of bullying anyone, anywhere he likes. As the world saw this past May, when his security forces launched what police called a "brutal attack" against peaceful demonstrators outside the Turkish ambassador's residence in Washington, D.C., opponents of his dictatorial regime have good reason to fear for their safety, even in America.

Tuesday afternoon, however, Erdoğan saw that his self-regard was no match for liberty buttressed by resolve: The Middle East Forum (MEF), a Philadelphia think tank, rejected his demand to disinvite a Turkish dissident, Emre Çelik, from addressing a conference of thirty members of the Political Committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of NATO that MEF sponsored — at NATO's suggestion, on September 19, 2017.

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EU: Delusions without Borders

by Judith Bergman  •  September 21, 2017 at 5:00 am

  • Many migrants simply refused to leave, disappeared, or their home countries refused to receive them.

  • The European Commission published a "report card" on the EU member states' "progress" in taking the allocated quotas of migrants. Even Sweden, on the brink of societal collapse from the influx of migrants, was told that it was only "close" to reaching its quota.

  • ISIS apparently has at its disposal some 11,000 stolen blank Syrian passports that it could put to use in order to smuggle its terrorists into Europe under fake identities; at the same time, more European ISIS fighters are expected to return to Europe. Why does the EU want to make it easy for them?

Jean Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, gives his State of the Union Address to the European Parliament on September 13. (Image source: European Parliament)

On September 13, the President of the European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, Jean Claude Juncker gave his State of the Union Address to the European Parliament, saying:

"Last year... Europe was battered and bruised by a year that shook our very foundation. We only had two choices. Either come together around a positive European agenda or each retreat into our own corners... I argued for unity. I proposed a positive agenda to help create ... a Europe that protects, empowers and defends... Over the past twelve months, the European Parliament has helped bring this agenda to life. We continue to make progress with each passing day... In the last year, we saw all 27 leaders... renew their vows... to our Union. All of this leads me to believe: the wind is back in Europe's sails."

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Does the President Have the Right to Expect Loyalty from His Attorney General?

by Alan M. Dershowitz  •  September 20, 2017 at 11:00 am

  • Under our constitutional structure there is no perfect cure for the mistake made by our founders in merging the two incompatible goals of the current Attorney General: that of political advisor to the president; and that of independent chief prosecutor.

  • We are one of the few western democracies that mistakenly merged these roles into one. Our Attorney General is supposed to both advise the president politically... But at the same time, the Attorney General is supposed to be the head law enforcement officer of the United States – the chief prosecutor.

  • The system should be changed. The Justice Department should be broken up into two completely separate agencies, with two separate heads: the Minister of Justice would be a loyal political advisor to the president and a member of his cabinet; and the Director of Public Prosecution would be completely independent, and not a member of the cabinet. This separation will not be easy to achieve. But it may be possible, without a constitutional amendment, if Congress and the courts have the will to do it.

US Constitution (Image source: Jonathan Thorne/Flickr)

Recent news reports describe the President chastising his Attorney General Jeff Sessions for disloyalty. According to the New York Times, after learning that a special counsel had been appointed, President Trump accused Sessions of "disloyalty." Critics insist that the President has the right to demand loyalty of every other member of his cabinet but not of the Attorney General. The Attorney General is different, these critics insist, because he is the chief law enforcement officer of the United States. The Atlantic's David A. Graham, for example, criticized Trump's demand for unconditional "loyalty," saying that, "for Trump, there is only one loyalty: to the president himself. When his aides and staffers make the mistake of following any other principle—rule of law, standard ethics policies, U.S. alliances—that might conflict with the principle of loyalty to Trump, the president becomes enraged."

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The True Enemies of the Palestinians

by Bassam Tawil  •  September 20, 2017 at 5:00 am

  • The agreement makes no reference to Hamas's security control over the Gaza Strip. This means that Hamas and its armed wing, Ezaddin Al-Qassam, will remain the main "law-enforcers" in the Gaza Strip. The idea that Hamas would allow Mahmoud Abbas's security forces to return to the Gaza Strip is pure illusion.

  • There is no mention in the agreement of Hamas's political and ideological agenda. The agreement does not require Hamas to abandon its charter, which calls for the elimination of Israel. Nor does it require Hamas to lay down its arms and accept Israel's right to exist.

  • The agreement absolves Hamas of its financial responsibilities towards its constituents in the Gaza Strip. The resumption of Palestinian Authority (PA) funds to the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip will allow Hamas to redirect its resources and energies to building up its military capabilities in preparation for war with Israel. Hamas will no longer have to worry about salaries and electricity and medical supplies to the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip because Abbas will be taking care of that.

  • The agreement facilitates Hamas's effort to project itself as a legitimate player in the Palestinian arena and win international recognition and sympathy. Hamas will now be able to market itself as a legitimate partner in Abbas's Western-funded PA governments.

Pictured: Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas talks with then Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh on April 5, 2007 in Gaza City. Since 2007, Hamas and the Palestinian Authority have announced at least four "reconciliation" agreements to end their rivalry. (Photo by Mohamed Alostaz/PPM via Getty Images)

Since 2007, Hamas and the Palestinian Authority (PA) have announced at least four "reconciliation" agreements to end their rivalry, which began a year earlier when Hamas won the Palestinian legislative elections. This week, under the auspices of the Egyptian authorities, the two rival Palestinian parties announced yet another deal to patch up their differences and achieve "national unity."

The latest agreement between Hamas and the PA requires the Islamist movement to dismantle its shadow government in the Gaza Strip -- known as the Administrative Committee. It was this shadow government that prompted PA President Mahmoud Abbas to impose a number of punitive measures against the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, including cutting off salaries to civil servants, forcing thousands of employees into early retirement, halting payments for electricity supplied by Israel and reducing medicine supplies to hospitals in the Gaza Strip.

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