Posts Tagged ‘Obama’

WikiLeaks exposes Obama

February 25, 2011

Op-ed: Leaked documents refute US President Obama’s fundamental assumptions

Yoram Ettinger

Published: 12.09.10, 11:37 / Israel Opinion
 

Recently published Wikileaks documents expose the failure of President Obama’s counter-terrorism policy. 

While reaffirming a 1,400 years old Muslim track record, the documents refute Obama’s fundamental assumptions, which have shaped his counter-terrorism policy: that the Palestinian issue is a root cause of Middle East turbulence and anti-Western terrorism; that Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are allies of the US; that there is no Islamic terrorism since Islam promotes peace and not terrorism; that there is no Jihadist terrorism since Jihad is a process which purifies the soul; that there is no global terrorism; that Islamic terrorists represent a Muslim minority which rejects modernity and that Islam has always been part of the American story.

According to the documents, Islamic terrorism has afflicted the globe from Latin America through the US and overseas American targets, Western Europe, the former USSR, Africa, the Middle East (hitting mostly fellow-Muslims), South Asia, the Far East and Australia.

The worldwide proliferation of Islamic terrorism is orchestrated and executed, also, by multi-lingual graduates of Western universities, who proficiently use the Internet, Blackberry, iPod, Twitter and Facebook. Contrary to Obama’s assumption, modern-day Islamic terrorists do not reject modernity. In fact, they leverage modernity in order to advance Islam’s historical values and goals. They believe that Islam’s destiny of religious and territorial domination of the globe is divinely-ordained. And, they pursue their goals via violence, intolerance toward “infidels” and “apostates,” totalitarianism and “Holy Wars” (Jihad) against civilizations and entities that undermine their megalomaniac aspirations, which transcend the Palestinian issue and Israel’s policies or existence.

Irrespective of the Palestinian issue and the Arab-Israeli conflict, Muslim terrorists operate along the joint border of Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina, as well as in San Paulo, Foz do Iguacu and Parana, Brazil. Independent of Israel’s policies and existence, the Lashkar-E-Taiba, Jaish-E-Mohammed and other Islamic terrorist organizations – operating with the backing of Pakistan – target India. Moreover, Lashkar-E-Taiba expands its presence in Pakistan – where it collaborates with the Inter Services Intelligence – Sri Lanka and Nepal in order to intensify terrorism in India.

Tailwind to terrorists

According to WikiLeaks – quoting a December 2009 Secretary of State Clinton memo – Saudi Arabia (especially), Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates are the chief financial supporters of global Islamic Sunni terrorism, such as al-Qaeda, Taliban and Lashkar –E-Taiba, raising funds for terrorism through seemingly philanthropic organizations during pilgrimages to Mecca.

The May 31, 2010 edition of The Sunday Times reported that Afghanistan’s financial intelligence unit, FinTraca, documented a $1.5 billion transfer from Saudi Arabia to Afghani terrorists, mostly Taliban. The British daily asked: “One wonders how much of this money was used to buy weapons that killed 1,268 American soldiers and maimed thousands more in Afghanistan?!”

Undersecretary of the Treasury for Financial and Terrorism Intelligence, Stuart Levey, testified at an October 6, 2009 Senate Banking Committee hearing that “money is leaving Saudi Arabia to fund terrorism…Undoubtedly, some of that money is going to Iraq, to South-East Asia and to any other place where there are terrorists…”

For example, the Riyadh-based al-Rajhi Bank was implicated in funding the Islamic Chechen Mujahedeen. Saudi involvement in anti-Western Islamic terrorism was also reported in 2009 by Pakistan’s police, including a $15 million transfer to Jihadists who were involved in the murder of former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto. A November 15, 2010 report by the US Government Accountability Office (GAO), a US Congress investigative unit, maintained that Saudi Arabia made progress in curbing terror-funding within the kingdom but did not cooperate in de-funding Islamic terrorism outside the kingdom.

Saudi-funded Islamic non-profit foundations – with direct and indirect ties to terror organizations – proliferate globally. The first foundation, the Muslim World League was established in 1962, five years before the Six-Day War, before the first settlement was established, while Jordan and Egypt occupied parts of Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and Gaza and the Palestinian issue did not preoccupy Western

policymakers. More Saudi-supported foundations followed, including the USA-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), the North American Islamic Trust (NAIS), the Holy Land Foundation (HLF), etc.

However, President Obama has overlooked the fact that those who finance and incite terrorism are more culpable than the brainwashed terrorists who execute terrorism. President Obama has subordinated counter-terrorism to wishful thinking, oversimplification, misreading of the writing on the wall and a series of wrong assumptions, such as a supposed linkage between the Palestinian issue and countering-Islamic terrorism and preventing Iran’s nuclearization. Thus, wrong assumptions have produced wrong policies, which have yielded tailwind to terrorists and rogue regimes and headwind to Western democracies.

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Clinton a danger to Israel

December 27, 2010
Photo: AFP
Hillary Clinton  Photo: AFP

Clinton a danger to Israel

Op-ed: Hillary Clinton’s disregard for Arab desire to eliminate Israel delusional, evil

Moshe Dann

Published: 12.18.10, 18:03 / Israel Opinion

 

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s address to the Saban Forum should leave little doubt that she is a danger to the State of Israel and, thereby, to the Jewish people. For those who care about Israel, her words, because she expresses the position of President Obama’s administration, are alarming.

 

Clinton’s speech was praised for not demanding a further settlement freeze; this was because US policy makers realized it would accomplish nothing, and PM Netanyahu had already agreed to stop, or severely limit building de facto. Instead, she emphasized state-building, “ending the occupation,” and borders. Coupled with international recognition of Palestinian statehood, this side-steps Israeli resistance to a freeze and insistence on Palestinian acceptance of Israel, further isolating Israel. What she did not say is worse.

 

Analysis
Peace impasse: Israel at risk / Ron Ben-Yishai
Analysis: Vacuum in wake of stalled negotiations recipe for trouble; Israel must act quickly
Full Story

Not once did she mention official PA support, directly and indirectly, for incitement and terrorism. While passing on the usual gesture to America’s “commitment to Israel’s security,” her focus was elsewhere.

 

Blindly obedient to the notion of building a Palestinian state, she ignored the recent statement of Fatah, the PA’s ruling party in the West Bank: “No to Israel as a Jewish state, no to interim borders, no to land swaps.” And that’s only for openers.

 

She did mention how important it was to “ease the situation in Gaza,” and “foster legitimate economic growth.” Yet she forgot to mention the plight of Gilad Shalit.

 

Clinton’s focus was “the core issues of the conflict on borders and security; settlements, water, refugees; and on Jerusalem itself.” Her solution was “state-building work of the PA” and support for the Arab (Saudi) Peace Initiative – which grants the Palestinians a state based on the 1949 Armistice Lines, including Jerusalem’s division, and returning the Golan Heights to Syria. Israel gets “normal relations,” as long as that may last.

 

Clinton waves at “fundamental compromises,” but given her pro-Palestinian agenda, and her “two-state” axiom, this means Israel’s capitulation and surrender. Although she refers to “security arrangements” to prevent terrorism, she never spells out how that is possible; her vagueness is either lack of understanding, or ignorance. Even-handedly, she moves on to the issue of settlements: “we do not accept the legitimacy of continued settlement activity.”

 

On borders: “the occupation will be over.”

 

On Palestinian refugees: “a just and permanent solution.”

 

On Jerusalem: “the religious interests of people and all faiths around the world must be respected.”

 

“Palestinian state-building” inspires her: “The lack of peace and the occupation that began in 1967 continue to deprive the Palestinian people of dignity and self-determination. This is unacceptable, and ultimately, it too is unsustainable.”

 

She missed the fact that Jordan is a Palestinian state, carved out of the Palestine Mandate by Britain in 1922, with a population that is two-thirds Palestinian.

 

This is not, however, what makes Ms. Clinton, and those who think like her, so dangerous; it’s the notion of what the core issues really are.

 

If the dispute between Arabs and Israelis is territorial, it would have been resolved long ago. It’s not about the “occupation in 1967;” it’s about the Nakba (Catastrophe), as Arabs see it, the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948.

 

The problem is not the area that Israel occupies, but her existence. Enshrined in the charters of the PLO and Hamas, Palestinians don’t want a state alongside Israel, but one that replaces Israel. Not understanding this is delusional; not including this as a core issue is evil.

 

Evil is a harsh word, so here’s why I use it. Clinton, Obama’s Administration, and everyone else know that Israel cannot accept her agenda, since that would mean exposure to significant risks. Rejecting her efforts will create more tension, and serve to isolate and vilify Israel, while strengthening the forces of de-legitimization.

 

She chose her words carefully: “We hope to see a significant curtailment of incursions by Israeli troops into Palestinian areas.” What about the reasons for those incursions? What about the lives that will be saved by capturing terrorists before they attack? From her impressions, Israel is not only wrong, but wicked.

 

And Clinton knows – as experts have informed her – that the Palestinian security forces that “stood watchful guard” during her visits may easily turn into executioners. They have done little or nothing to protect Israelis, nor should that be expected.

 

PA “corruption and mismanagement,” billions in US funds wasted? No problem; “I was pleased to announce the transfer of an additional $150 million in direct assistance to the PA” – and to Hamas. That should soothe American workers on unemployment lines.

 

Clinton’s emphasis on “an independent, viable sovereign state,” may be misguided; but in her insistence that there is no other alternative, linking such a state with vital American interests, condemning “provocative (Israeli) announcements on east Jerusalem,” and blaming Israel for preventing peace, Madame Secretary has contributed to a global climate of anathema towards Israel.

 

She cannot say, “I was only following orders;” she gives them.

 

“I’m 63 and I’m Tired”

July 13, 2010

“I’m 63 and I’m Tired”

by Robert A. Hall

I’m 63. Except for one semester in college when jobs were scarce and a six-month period when I was between jobs, but job-hunting every day, I’ve worked, hard, since I was 18. Despite some health challenges, I still put in 50-hour weeks, and haven’t called in sick in seven or eight years. I make a good salary, but I didn’t inherit my job or my income, and I worked to get where I am. Given the economy, there’s no retirement in sight, and I’m tired. Very tired. I’m tired of being told that I have to “spread the wealth” to people who don’t have my work ethic. I’m tired of being told the government will take the money I earned, by force if necessary, and give it to people too lazy to earn it. I’m tired of being told that I have to pay more taxes to “keep people in their homes.” Sure, if they lost their jobs or got sick, I’m willing to help. But if they bought McMansions at three times the price of our paid-off, $250,000 condo, on one-third of my salary, then let the left-wing Congress-critters who passed Fannie and Freddie and the Community Reinvestment Act that created the bubble help them with their own money. I’m tired of being told how bad America is by left-wing millionaires like Michael Moore, George Soros and Hollywood Entertainers who live in luxury because of the opportunities America offers. In thirty years, if they get their way, the United States will have the economy of Zimbabwe, the freedom of the press of China, the crime and violence of Mexico, the tolerance for Christian people of Iran, and the freedom of speech of Venezuela. I’m tired of being told that Islam is a “Religion of Peace,” when every day I can read dozens of stories of Muslim men killing their sisters, wives and daughters for their family “honor”; of Muslims rioting over some slight offense; of Muslims murdering Christian and Jews because they aren’t “believers”; of Muslims burning schools for girls; of Muslims stoning teenage rape victims to death for “adultery”; of Muslims mutilating the genitals of little girls; all in the name of Allah, because the Qur’an and Shari’a law tells them to. I’m tired of being told that “race doesn’t matter” in the post-racial world of Obama, when it’s all that matters in affirmative action jobs, lower college admission and graduation standards for minorities (harming them the most), government contract set-asides, tolerance for the ghetto culture of violence and fatherless children that hurts minorities more than anyone, and in the appointment of U.S. Senators from Illinois. I think it’s very cool that we have a black president and that a black child is doing her homework at the desk where Lincoln wrote the Emancipation Proclamation. I just wish the black president was Condi Rice, or someone who believes more in freedom and the individual and less arrogantly of an all-knowing government. I’m tired of a news media that thinks Bush’s fundraising and inaugural expenses were obscene, but that think Obama’s, at triple the cost, were wonderful; that thinks Bush exercising daily was a waste of presidential time, but Obama exercising is a great example for the public to control weight and stress; that picked over every line of Bush’s military records, but never demanded that Kerry release his; that slammed Palin, with two years as governor, for being too inexperienced for VP, but touted Obama with three years as senator as potentially the best president ever. Wonder why people are dropping their subscriptions or switching to Fox News? Get a clue. I didn’t vote for Bush in 2000, but the media and Kerry drove me to his camp in 2004. I’m tired of being told that out of “tolerance for other cultures” we must let Saudi Arabia use our oil money to fund mosques and mandrassa Islamic schools to preach hate in America , while no American group is allowed to fund a church, synagogue or religious school in Saudi Arabia to teach love and tolerance. I’m tired of being told I must lower my living standard to fight global warming, which no one is allowed to debate. My wife and I live in a two-bedroom apartment and carpool together five miles to our jobs. We also own a three-bedroom condo where our daughter and granddaughter live. Our carbon footprint is about 5% of Al Gore’s, and if you’re greener than Gore, you’re green enough. I’m tired of being told that drug addicts have a disease, and I must help support and treat them, and pay for the damage they do. Did a giant germ rush out of a dark alley, grab them, and stuff white powder up their noses while they tried to fight it off? I don’t think Gay people choose to be Gay, but I damn sure think druggies chose to take drugs. And I’m tired of harassment from cool people treating me like a freak when I tell them I never tried marijuana. I’m tired of illegal aliens being called “undocumented workers,” especially the ones who aren’t working, but are living on welfare or crime. What’s next? Calling drug dealers, “Undocumented Pharmacists”? And, no, I’m not against Hispanics. Most of them are Catholic, and it’s been a few hundred years since Catholics wanted to kill me for my religion. I’m willing to fast track for citizenship any Hispanic person, who can speak English, doesn’t have a criminal record and who is self-supporting without family on welfare, or who serves honorably for three years in our military…. Those are the citizens we need. I’m tired of latte liberals and journalists, who would never wear the uniform of the Republic themselves, or let their entitlement-handicapped kids near a recruiting station, trashing our military. They and their kids can sit at home, never having to make split-second decisions under life and death circumstances, and bad mouth better people than themselves. Do bad things happen in war? You bet. Do our troops sometimes misbehave? Sure. Does this compare with the atrocities that were the policy of our enemies for the last fifty years and still are? Not even close. So here’s the deal. I’ll let myself be subjected to all the humiliation and abuse that was heaped on terrorists at Abu Ghraib or Gitmo, and the critics can let themselves be subject to captivity by the Muslims, who tortured and beheaded Daniel Pearl in Pakistan, or the Muslims who tortured and murdered Marine Lt. Col. William Higgins in Lebanon, or the Muslims who ran the blood-spattered Al Qaeda torture rooms our troops found in Iraq, or the Muslims who cut off the heads of schoolgirls in Indonesia, because the girls were Christian. Then we’ll compare notes. British and American soldiers are the only troops in history that civilians came to for help and handouts, instead of hiding from in fear. I’m tired of people telling me that their party has a corner on virtue and the other party has a corner on corruption. Read the papers; bums are bipartisan. And I’m tired of people telling me we need bipartisanship. I live in Illinois , where the “Illinois Combine” of Democrats has worked to loot the public for years. Not to mention the tax cheats in Obama’s cabinet. I’m tired of hearing wealthy athletes, entertainers and politicians of both parties talking about innocent mistakes, stupid mistakes or youthful mistakes, when we all know they think their only mistake was getting caught. I’m tired of people with a sense of entitlement, rich or poor. Speaking of poor, I’m tired of hearing people with air-conditioned homes, color TVs and two cars called poor. The majority of Americans didn’t have that in 1970, but we didn’t know we were “poor.” The poverty pimps have to keep changing the definition of poor to keep the dollars flowing. I’m real tired of people who don’t take responsibility for their lives and actions. I’m tired of hearing them blame the government, or discrimination or big-whatever for their problems. Yes, I’m damn tired. But I’m also glad to be 63. Because, mostly, I’m not going to have to see the world these people are making. I’m just sorry for my granddaughter. Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. There is no way this will be widely publicized, unless each of us sends it on! This is your chance to make a difference. “I’m 63 and I’m Tired” by Robert A. Hall I’m 63. Except for one semester in college when jobs were scarce and a six-month period when I was between jobs, but job-hunting every day, I’ve worked, hard, since I was 18. Despite some health challenges, I still put in 50-hour weeks, and haven’t called in sick in seven or eight years. I make a good salary, but I didn’t inherit my job or my income, and I worked to get where I am. Given the economy, there’s no retirement in sight, and I’m tired. Very tired. I’m tired of being told that I have to “spread the wealth” to people who don’t have my work ethic. I’m tired of being told the government will take the money I earned, by force if necessary, and give it to people too lazy to earn it. I’m tired of being told that I have to pay more taxes to “keep people in their homes.” Sure, if they lost their jobs or got sick, I’m willing to help. But if they bought McMansions at three times the price of our paid-off, $250,000 condo, on one-third of my salary, then let the left-wing Congress-critters who passed Fannie and Freddie and the Community Reinvestment Act that created the bubble help them with their own money. I’m tired of being told how bad America is by left-wing millionaires like Michael Moore, George Soros and Hollywood Entertainers who live in luxury because of the opportunities America offers. In thirty years, if they get their way, the United States will have the economy of Zimbabwe , the freedom of the press of China , the crime and violence of Mexico , the tolerance for Christian people of Iran , and the freedom of speech of Venezuela . I’m tired of being told that Islam is a “Religion of Peace,” when every day I can read dozens of stories of Muslim men killing their sisters, wives and daughters for their family “honor”; of Muslims rioting over some slight offense; of Muslims murdering Christian and Jews because they aren’t “believers”; of Muslims burning schools for girls; of Muslims stoning teenage rape victims to death for “adultery”; of Muslims mutilating the genitals of little girls; all in the name of Allah, because the Qur’an and Shari’a law tells them to. I’m tired of being told that “race doesn’t matter” in the post-racial world of Obama, when it’s all that matters in affirmative action jobs, lower college admission and graduation standards for minorities (harming them the most), government contract set-asides, tolerance for the ghetto culture of violence and fatherless children that hurts minorities more than anyone, and in the appointment of U.S. Senators from Illinois. I think it’s very cool that we have a black president and that a black child is doing her homework at the desk where Lincoln wrote the Emancipation Proclamation. I just wish the black president was Condi Rice, or someone who believes more in freedom and the individual and less arrogantly of an all-knowing government. I’m tired of a news media that thinks Bush’s fundraising and inaugural expenses were obscene, but that think Obama’s, at triple the cost, were wonderful; that thinks Bush exercising daily was a waste of presidential time, but Obama exercising is a great example for the public to control weight and stress; that picked over every line of Bush’s military records, but never demanded that Kerry release his; that slammed Palin, with two years as governor, for being too inexperienced for VP, but touted Obama with three years as senator as potentially the best president ever. Wonder why people are dropping their subscriptions or switching to Fox News? Get a clue. I didn’t vote for Bush in 2000, but the media and Kerry drove me to his camp in 2004. I’m tired of being told that out of “tolerance for other cultures” we must let Saudi Arabia use our oil money to fund mosques and mandrassa Islamic schools to preach hate in America , while no American group is allowed to fund a church, synagogue or religious school in Saudi Arabia to teach love and tolerance. I’m tired of being told I must lower my living standard to fight global warming, which no one is allowed to debate. My wife and I live in a two-bedroom apartment and carpool together five miles to our jobs. We also own a three-bedroom condo where our daughter and granddaughter live. Our carbon footprint is about 5% of Al Gore’s, and if you’re greener than Gore, you’re green enough. I’m tired of being told that drug addicts have a disease, and I must help support and treat them, and pay for the damage they do. Did a giant germ rush out of a dark alley, grab them, and stuff white powder up their noses while they tried to fight it off? I don’t think Gay people choose to be Gay, but I damn sure think druggies chose to take drugs. And I’m tired of harassment from cool people treating me like a freak when I tell them I never tried marijuana. I’m tired of illegal aliens being called “undocumented workers,” especially the ones who aren’t working, but are living on welfare or crime. What’s next? Calling drug dealers, “Undocumented Pharmacists”? And, no, I’m not against Hispanics. Most of them are Catholic, and it’s been a few hundred years since Catholics wanted to kill me for my religion. I’m willing to fast track for citizenship any Hispanic person, who can speak English, doesn’t have a criminal record and who is self-supporting without family on welfare, or who serves honorably for three years in our military…. Those are the citizens we need. I’m tired of latte liberals and journalists, who would never wear the uniform of the Republic themselves, or let their entitlement-handicapped kids near a recruiting station, trashing our military. They and their kids can sit at home, never having to make split-second decisions under life and death circumstances, and bad mouth better people than themselves. Do bad things happen in war? You bet. Do our troops sometimes misbehave? Sure. Does this compare with the atrocities that were the policy of our enemies for the last fifty years and still are? Not even close. So here’s the deal. I’ll let myself be subjected to all the humiliation and abuse that was heaped on terrorists at Abu Ghraib or Gitmo, and the critics can let themselves be subject to captivity by the Muslims, who tortured and beheaded Daniel Pearl in Pakistan, or the Muslims who tortured and murdered Marine Lt. Col. William Higgins in Lebanon, or the Muslims who ran the blood-spattered Al Qaeda torture rooms our troops found in Iraq, or the Muslims who cut off the heads of schoolgirls in Indonesia, because the girls were Christian. Then we’ll compare notes. British and American soldiers are the only troops in history that civilians came to for help and handouts, instead of hiding from in fear. I’m tired of people telling me that their party has a corner on virtue and the other party has a corner on corruption. Read the papers; bums are bipartisan. And I’m tired of people telling me we need bipartisanship. I live in Illinois , where the “Illinois Combine” of Democrats has worked to loot the public for years. Not to mention the tax cheats in Obama’s cabinet. I’m tired of hearing wealthy athletes, entertainers and politicians of both parties talking about innocent mistakes, stupid mistakes or youthful mistakes, when we all know they think their only mistake was getting caught. I’m tired of people with a sense of entitlement, rich or poor. Speaking of poor, I’m tired of hearing people with air-conditioned homes, color TVs and two cars called poor. The majority of Americans didn’t have that in 1970, but we didn’t know we were “poor.” The poverty pimps have to keep changing the definition of poor to keep the dollars flowing. I’m real tired of people who don’t take responsibility for their lives and actions. I’m tired of hearing them blame the government, or discrimination or big-whatever for their problems. Yes, I’m damn tired. But I’m also glad to be 63. Because, mostly, I’m not going to have to see the world these people are making. I’m just sorry for my granddaughter. Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. There is no way this will be widely publicized, unless each of us sends it on! This is your chance to make a difference.

Emerging Rupture in Iran-Turkey Relations

July 6, 2010

RealClearWorld – Emerging Rupture in Iran-Turkey Relations.

Emerging Rupture in Iran-Turkey Relations

By Meir Javedanfar

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has suddenly found himself reassessing his government’s burgeoning ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran – and sooner than expected.

One of the reasons Turkey agreed to Iran’s demands and voted against new UN Sanctions was because the Iranian government promised that it would continue to negotiate with the West. However, it did not take long for Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to break his promise. Soon after the UN resolution was passed, the Iranian leader declared, through Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, that all negotiations will be suspended for two months.

This has clearly angered the Turks, who may not be able to stand by Tehran for very much longer. And why should they? The U.S. government is already breathing down Erdogan’s neck, and word is that the meeting between the two sides at last month’s G20 summit in Canada was tense. Obama arrived late to the meeting, and there were no joint press statements or photographs taken together.

This, in addition to other reports that the U.S. canceled its participation at a recent regional security conference in Turkey a mere 12 hours before it started.

The Turkish government knew well in advance that its decision to back Iran in the UN would raise the ire of the Americans. However, they hoped that the merits of their relationship with Tehran would compensate for that and make such a policy worthwhile. Reality is proving otherwise. The Brazilians soon realized after sanctions passed that it wasn’t worth their while to defend Iran’s nuclear cause. The Turks, based on Washington’s reaction and the fact that Tehran broke its promise of negotiations, could very well reach the same conclusion – and sooner than many expected.

This does not mean that Turkey is going to break relations with Tehran, nor does it mean that it will distance itself from Iran altogether. What it does mean is that Erdogan and his AKP party will reduce their support for Iran’s cause in the UN. They will stop acting like Ali Khamenei’s lawyer and defender in the West, because that’s what Khamenei wanted from them all along, and he was prepared to pay handsomely for it with a cheap gas deal and lucrative contracts for Turkish companies.

Now that new sanctions are going to be imposed by the United Nations, as well as the U.S. and the EU, the Iranian government is going to find it harder to buy political support at the UN.

One major reason will be the decline in value of Iranian incentives. There are few countries in the world who would now prefer to side with Iran against the west. This means it will be more difficult for Khamenei to find heavy weight countries from the Non Aligned Movement (NAM) to back its stance. Even Hugo Chavez is not as vociferous as he once was; snubbed by Iran’s ties with Brazil, he did not attend the recent nuclear summit in Tehran.

This is just one impact of sanctions. There are also domestic implications. Some countries, including Israel, have dismissed the latest round of sanctions against Iran. The Iranian government has not. Ahmadinejad has already started a domestic PR campaign to calm nerves. In a recent interview he tried to downplay the impact of sanctions by saying that the U.S. and Iran do not have any economic relations, therefore the latest round of sanctions won’t have any impact on Iran’s economy.

This is of course wrong. Although direct economic trade between both countries is not very much, the new round of sanctions are nevertheless going to hit the economy hard. First and foremost, it is going to become more difficult for American companies who were using the United Arab Emirates to resell their products to Iran. This is partly due to the UAE’s commitment to abide by the new sanctions.

There is also the oil sector. The Iranian oil industry needs close to $140 billion of investment over the next 10 years in order to maintain its current production capacity. The new round of sanctions by the U.S. and the EU will complicate the Iranian oil industry’s abilities to attract the investment it needs to keep functioning. It will also make it far more expensive and difficult for them to buy equipment for this all important sector. This is a serious threat, one which in the long term could threaten the oil industry with a possible meltdown.

Nuclear armed or not, these are dangers which Iran’s leaders can only ignore at their own peril.

Meir Javedanfar is an Iranian-Israeli Middle East analyst and a regular contributor to RealClearWorld. He is co-author of The Nuclear Sphinx of Tehran: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the State of Iran.

Column One: Weathering the approaching storm

June 19, 2010

Column One: Weathering the approaching storm.

Column One: Weathering the approaching storm


Israel is endangered today as it has never been before.

//

The America-Israel relationship is not just fine. It is thriving.

June 15, 2010

We heard it with our own ears. First from President Obama.

Then, from Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren.

Then from policy and political staff of the White House.

The America-Israel relationship is not just fine.  It is thriving.

And the only thing that stands to threaten it is us: the Jewish Community.

Like everyone else out there in email-land, we are daily  recipients of the viral emails that go round the world with information that has great shock value and is in most cases filled with half-truths and fabrications. And if all we do is READ:DELETE or READ: FORWARD without any system of verification, we engage in the slow destruction of the bond we hold so dear – the bond of the Diaspora and Israel.

At a private dinner a few days ago at the Israeli Ambassador’s residence, held to honor Democratic Party Chairman Governor Tim Kaine for his dedication to connecting the Commonwealth of Virginia with Israel, Ambassador Oren  wasted no time opening the discussion between the 16 of us. Using  Israel as a political wedge weakens the relationship and damages  Israel, he said.

Ambassador Oren was emphatic:

“In the majority of respects, relations between the  United States and  Israel are as good as under any administration, and better than some.”

Said Ambassador Oren:

“History has taught us not to be silent and to hold our leaders accountable.  But making noise that deafens the truth endangers  Israel and our future as a strong Jewish Diaspora community. I have more access to the highest levels in the US Government, including the NSC, than any of my predecessors ~ some of them are actually jealous!”

Said Ambassador Oren:

“Prime Minister Netanyahu was NOT snubbed recently at the White House”. “I was there, he told us. “The story was invented, it was untrue, and I was there.” He went on to explain for the thousandth time what happened last month:  the non-state visit followed protocol: no photos, no media, no pomp, no circumstance.  The Netanyahu-team, that included Ambassador Oren, entered the front door of the White House.  The 2-hour meeting ended amicably. PM Netanyahu requested additional time to continue meeting with his staff INSIDE the White House.  President Obama said yes – and excused himself to go to bed.  After several hours, PM Bibi called President Obama and asked him to return.  The President re-dressed and came downstairs to meet the Israeli team again. Near-midnight.  The two allies parted on good terms. The next morning, the false story appeared in one Israeli newspaper and other media outlets picked up that story as “reported in the Israeli press” without verifying the facts.

Ambassador Oren detailed the important intellectual property rights agreement signed between  Israel and the  US eight weeks ago, and strongly emphasized President Obama’s true commitment to  Israel by maintaining QME: the Qualitative Military Edge over its neighbors. This is an inside measure of military preparedness.  Other examples the Ambassador enthusiastically cited were the lifting of legal and trade barriers thanks directly to President Obama.  And today’s news that  Israel has been unanimously voted into the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) caps direct efforts by Presidents Bush and Obama to further the integration of  Israel into the coalition of democratic nations.   These kinds of things make quality of life and safety better for Israelis but don’t make sexy headlines.

Ambassador Oren stated without hesitation that the stories of the  US siding with Palestinians at the UN were FALSE.  And that stories of the  US holding up  Israel ‘s weapon-assistance are FALSE.  He asked us, implored us, to spread the truth. Ambassador Oren pointed out that allies do not always agree on everything. But that  America and Israel agree on most.  It was nearly four hours of dinner and discussion.

Ambassador Oren said he was humbled by the courage President Obama demonstrated in his now-famous  Cairo speech, and that few have noted the fact he was the first US President to say while standing on Arab soil directly to a Muslim audience,  that “America ‘s strong bonds with  Israel are well known. The bond is unbreakable. It is based upon cultural and historical ties, and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied.  …and denying that fact is baseless, it is ignorant and it is hateful.Threatening Israel with destruction- or repeating vile stereotypes about Jews- is deeply wrong, and only serves to evoke in the minds of Israelis this most painful of memories while preventing the peace that the people of this region deserve.”

As most on our ’email list’ know, we are committed to the success of this President and this Administration. We believe deep to our core that President Obama is sincere and honest and means what he says about the commitment to  Israel and her security. We believe him when he told us two weeks ago in  Miami that he spends more time on preventing a Nuclear Iran- than on any other single issue.  We believe his top policy and political staff when they tell us the issues concerning  Israel are top priority.

Sent by: Javier Y. Perl

“STAND FOR ISRAEL, STAND FOR REASON”

May 7, 2010

With Israel, with reason: a response to JCall

Dear friends,

in recent days, a group of French Jewish intellectuals have launched a call (JCall – “Appeal to Reason”), Which is basically a call for Israel to surrender.

JCall’s appeal is part of the great wave of de-legitimization of Israel
and his policy.

We responded with the strength of the real reasons, the reasons for Israel, and we want that the number and quality of our signatories demonstrate that there is a great movement opinion that defends Israel, Europe and worldwide.

The following is our appeal “with Israel, with reason”, that you please
to sign and spread as much as possible through your contacts (the text is in Italian, English and French). For Driving instructions as soon as our goal.

SIGN APPEAL WITH ISRAEL, WITH THE REASON ”
TO THIS LINK:
http://www.petitiononline.com/israel48/petition-sign.html

The attack against Israel by the Jcall document is inspired by a short-sighted view of the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. In fact, the signatories of this appeal do not have the clear perception of the global physical and moral threat to which Israel is currently exposed. It is indeed incredible that intelligent and cultivated people like Alain Finkelkraut and Bernard-Henri Levy – instead of dealing with Iran that will soon keep the whole world under the threat of the range of its atomic bomb – play with the idea that Benjamin Netanyahu is the true hindrance to peace, that the essential obstacle to a resolution of the conflict is a reproachable attitude of Israel. The intellectuals who have signed the French document ignore history and don’t care about the help that it will give and is already giving to the unprecedented
delegitimization threatening the life of Israel.

Pushing Israel to concessions without rewards, simply means to surrender the enemy without any guarantee: the unilateral withdrawal from Gaza has produced disastrous consequences, the land Gush Katif inhabitants has been kicked out from is since then a launching pad for missiles and terrorists; Ehud Barak’s concessions in Camp David,
designed to give Arafat practically everything he was asking for, led to the horror of the second Intifada, with its two-thousand people killed by suicide attacks; the evacuation of Southern Lebanon in 2000 strengthened the Hezbollah, supplied them with 40,000 missiles and led to the 2006 war.

Finkelkraut, Henri Levy and their fellow signatories claim that they are concerned about the future and the security of Israel. But they actually ignore the basic element that has prevented success of any peace process, namely the Arab and Palestinian refusal to recognize the very existence of the State of Israel as a permanent nation-state
in the Middle East. This all-encompassing rejection of Israel’s right to exist is reflected day by day in the Palestinian and pan-Arab media.
The attack against Netanyahu aims at breaking up his right wing coalition. But it actually never mattered whether an Israeli government was right or left: anyhow the Palestinians refused any proposal of peace.

Israeli land concessions like the ones the French intellectuals advocate will never bring peace. Only a cultural revolution in the Arab world can achieve it, but nobody asks for that, not even Obama, who devotes US great strength to pressure only Israel.

This is the current fashion.

Peace will not come because Israel becomes smaller. What will bring us closer to peace is if Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas stops naming public squares after mass-murderers like Hamas bombmaker Yehiya Ayash; if the Palestinians stop passing out candies when Jewish families are murdered by suicide bombers in restaurants;
and when the Arab world accepts Netanyahu’s modest request to recognize the State of Israel as the State of the Jewish people.

This reality is ignored as well by the Israeli intellectuals who have signed a document against the Nobel Peace Prize laureate Elie Wiesel, who wrote a very noble letter to support Jerusalem spiritual core and historical homeland of the Jewish people.

This sadly politically correct epidemic is probably designed to give some oxygen to the defeated pacifist movements that is actually able only to crash against the rock of the Islamist hatred culture and to defame Israel. But in this approach there is no contribution to any better future for the Middle East: the world must find the courage to face the new Islamist frenzy that springs from Iran, Syria, Hezbollah
and Hamas and points to the destruction of Israel. Iran and its allies are of course arming themselves with lethal weapons, not with vain words, like those who signed “The Call for Reason”. But even words can kill and destroy.

The signatories of the J-Call manifesto show a blatant ignorance of the extended hand policy adopted by Netanyahu since his Bar Ilan speech in June 2009, the ten-months settlements freeze, the lifting of many check points and the adoption of important measures to ease the Palestinian economy. And you can clearly see that the “Finkelkraut
document” has an Obama flavour, a prissy and respectable trendy attitude intellectuals are often unable to say no. This makes possible nowadays to the increasing number of Israel’s enemies to delegitimize the Jewish State rejoicing “even the Jews are with us”. If this was the signatories aim, they have indeed achieved it.

SIGN THE PETITION “STAND FOR ISRAEL, STAND FOR REASON”
CLICK ON THIS LINK:
http://www.petitiononline.com/israel48/petition-sign.html

Date Thursday, May 6, 2010
Comments Leave your comment
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Cynthia, Milan
Published Thursday, May 6, 2010 at 21:50:15
I signed the appeal, Flame dear, I hope many accessions, for the sake of Israel and Peace, the real Daniel Coppin, Naples
Published Thursday, May 6, 2010 at 13:58:25
An important initiative that I joined with conviction. Thanks for having taken.
Text and images are copyright 2010
Fiamma Nirenstein – contacts:
info@fiammanirenstein.com

Fiamma Nirenstein (giornalista e deputato),
Giuliano Ferrara (direttore de Il Foglio),
Paolo Mieli (presidente Rcs Libri, ex direttore del Corriere della Sera), Angelo Pezzana (giornalista, informazionecorretta.com e Libero),
Ugo Volli (semiologo, Università di Torino),
Shmuel Trigano (professore, Universités à Paris X-Nanterre),
Giorgio Israel (Università La Sapienza),
Giulio Meotti (giornalista, Il Foglio),
Raffaele La Capria (scrittore),
Evgeny Kissin (pianist),
Gianni Vernetti (deputato, ex Sottosegretario agli Esteri),
Susanna Nirenstein (giornalista),
Peppino Caldarola (giornalista),
Alain Elkann (scrittore, consigliere Ministero Beni Culturali),
Carlo Panella (giornalista, Il Foglio),
Emanuele Ottolenghi (Senior Fellow, Foundation for the Defense of Democracies),
Daniele Scalise (giornalista),
Giancarlo Loquenzi (Direttore, l’Occidentale),
Edoardo Tabasso (professore, Università di Firenze),
Leonardo Tirabassi (presidente Circolo dei Liberi Firenze,
Fondazione Magna Carta),
Angelo Moscati (Presidente Benè Berith Giovani Italia),
Johanna Arbib (World Chairman Board of Trustees Keren Hayesod),
Giacomo Kahn (Direttore mensile Shalom),
Magdi Allam (parlamentare europeo),
Luigi Compagna (senatore),
David Cassuto (ex vicesindaco di Gerusalemme),
Riccardo Pacifici (presidente Comunità Ebraica di Roma),
Anita Friedman (Associazione Appuntamento a Gerusalemme),
Cecilia Nizza (Consigliere Comunità Ebraica Italiana, Gerusalemme),
Leone Paserman (presidente della fondazione Museo della Shoah di Roma),
Massimo Polledri (deputato),
Enrico Pianetta (deputato, Presidente Associazione parlamentare di amicizia Italia-Israele),
Alessandro Pagano (deputato),
Renato Farina (deputato),
Marco Zacchera (deputato),
Gennaro Malgieri (deputato),
Dore Gold (President, Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, former Ambassador of Israel to the UN),
Norman Podhoretz (Writer, Editor-at-Large, Commentary Magazine), Michael Ledeen (Freedom Scholar, Foundation for Defense of Democracies),
Barbara Ledeen (senior advisor, The Israel Project),
Phyllis Chesler (Emerita Professor of Psychology and Women’s Studies, City University of New York),
Nina Rosenwald (Editor-in-Chief, http://www.hudson-ny.org),
Harold Rhode (esperto di Medioriente, ex Pentagono),
Caroline Glick (editorialista, Jerusalem Post),
Rafael Bardaji (Foreign Policy director, FAES Foundation),
Raffaele Sassun (Presidente Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael Italia),
Max Singer (a founder and Senior Fellow, Hudson Institute),
George and Annabelle Weidenfeld (President, Institute for Strategic Dialogue),
Anna Borioni, (associazione Appuntamento a Gerusalemme),
Efraim Inbar (Director, Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies),
Zvi Mazel (former Ambassador of Israel to Egypt and Sweden),
George Jochnowitz (Professor emeritus of Linguistics, College of Staten Island)

The conflict between the US and Israel must end now!

April 18, 2010

JPost.com | BlogCentral | Double Standard Watch | The conflict between the US and Israel must end now!.

Thursday Apr 01, 2010

Double Standard Watch: The conflict between the US and Israel must end now!

Posted by Alan M. Dershowitz
Comments: 179
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The apparently escalating conflict between the US and Israel did not have to occur. It must be resolved now, before it does irreparable harm to prospects for peace.

The conflict was largely contrived by people with agendas. The initial impetus for the brouhaha was an ill-timed announcement that permits had been issued for building 1,600 additional residences in a part of Jerusalem that had been captured by Israel in the 1967 war. The Netanyahu government had been praised by President Obama for agreeing to a freeze on building permits on the West Bank, despite the fact that the freeze did not extend to any part of Jerusalem. Thus the announcement of new building permits did not violate any agreement by Israel. Nonetheless, the timing of the announcement embarrassed Vice President Joe Biden, who was in Israel at the time.

The timing was neither an accident nor was it purposely done by Prime Minister Netanyahu to embarrass Biden. Many believe that the announcement was purposely timed by opponents of the peace process in order to embarrass Netanyahu. Whatever the motivation, the announcement deserved a rebuke from Vice President Biden. It also warranted an apology and explanation from the Israeli government, and Netanyahu immediately issued one. That should have ended the contretemps. But some in the Obama administration apparently decided that they too had an agenda beyond responding to the ill-timed announcement, and decided to take advantage of Israel’s gaffe. They began to pile on – and on, and on. Instead of it being a one-day story, the controversy continues to escalate and harden positions on all sides to this day, and perhaps beyond. The real victim is the peace process, and the winners are those – like Iran, Hamas and extremist Israelis – who oppose the two-state solution.

The building permits themselves were for residences not in east Jerusalem, but rather in north Jerusalem, and not in an Arab section, but rather in an entirely Jewish neighborhood. This neighborhood, Ramat Shlomo, is part of the area that everybody acknowledges should and will remain part of Israel even if an agreement for a two-state solution and the division of Jerusalem is eventually reached. In that respect, it is much like the ancient Jewish quarter of Jerusalem, which was illegally captured from the Jewish residents by the Jordanian army in the 1948 war. The Jordanians then desecrated Jewish holy places during its illegal occupation, and the Israelis legally recaptured it during the defensive war of 1967. No one in their right mind believes that Israel has any obligation to give up the Jewish quarter of Jerusalem, including the Western Wall, the holiest Jewish site in the world, despite the fact that it was recaptured during the 1967 war.

Because the Palestinians understand and acknowledge that these entirely Jewish areas of Jerusalem will remain part of the Jewish state even after an agreement, the ill-timed announcement of building permits during the Biden visit generated a relatively mild and routine complaint, rather than a bellicose response, from the Palestinian Authority leadership. The bellicose response came from the American leadership, which refused to let the issue go. Once this piling-on occurred, the Palestinian leadership had no choice but to join the chorus of condemnation, lest they be perceived as being less pro-Palestinian than the Obama administration.

Now positions have hardened on both sides, due largely to the public and persistent nature of the American condemnation. This rebuke culminated in the very public dissing of Prime Minister Netanyahu by President Obama during their recent White House meeting. Obama treated Netanyahu far worse than he treated Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who is corrupt to the core and who had invited Iranian dictator Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to deliver an anti-American tirade inside Afghanistan’s presidential palace. According to a high-ranking Afghan source, Karzai “invited Ahmadinejad to spite the Americans.” Nonetheless, President Obama flew to Afghanistan and had a very public dinner with Karzai, according him the red carpet treatment, thus granting him legitimacy following his fraudulent re-election.

Prime Minister Netanyahu, on the other hand, has been treated with disrespect in what many Israelis see as an effort to delegitimize him in the eyes of Israeli voters who know how important the US-Israeli relationship is in the Jewish state.

The shabby treatment accorded Israel’s duly elected leader has also stimulated an ugly campaign by some of Israel’s enemies to delegitimize the US-Israeli strategic relationship, and indeed the Jewish nation itself, in the eyes of American voters. The newest, and most dangerous, argument being offered by those who seek to damage the US-Israel alliance is that Israeli actions, such as issuing building permits in Jerusalem, endanger the lives of American troops fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

This phony argument – originally attributed to Vice President Biden and General David Petraeus but categorically denied by both of them – has now taken on a life of its own in the media. A CNN headline on the Rick Sanchez Show blared: “Israel a danger to US Troops.” Other headlines conveyed a similar message: “US Tells Israel: ‘You’re undermining America, endangering troops.'” Variations on this dangerous and false argument have been picked up by commentators such as Joe Klein in Time Magazine, Roger Cohen in The New York Times, DeWayne Wickham in USA Today and, not surprisingly, Patrick Buchanan and Professors Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer.

It is a dangerous and false argument. It is dangerous because its goal is to reduce support for Israel among mainstream Americans who understandably worry about our troops fighting abroad. This is ironic since the major pillar of Israel’s policy with regard to US troops is that Israel never wants to endanger our troops. That’s why it has never asked US soldiers to fight for Israel, as other allies have asked our soldiers to fight for them.  By seeking to scapegoat Israel for the death of American troops at the hands of Islamic terrorists, this argument blames those who love America for deaths caused by those who hate America.

Most of all, it is an entirely false argument. There is absolutely no correlation between Israeli actions and the safety of American troops – none.

No one has ever shown any relationship between what Israel does and the rate of American casualties, because there is no such relationship – none

Consider two significant time periods. The first is the end of 2000 and the beginning of 2001, when Israel offered the Palestinians virtually everything they could have wanted: a state on 100 percent of the Gaza Strip and 97% of the West Bank, a capital in a divided Jerusalem and a $35 billion reparation package for refugees. Virtually the entire Arab world urged Arafat to accept this generous offer, but he declined it. During the very months that Israel was doing everything possible to promote peace with the Palestinians, al-Qaida was planning its devastating attack on the World Trade Center. No correlation between Israeli actions and American casualties.

Then consider the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009 when Israel was engaged in Operation Cast Lead, which caused significant Palestinian casualties. During that difficult period, there was no increase in American casualties. Again, no correlation.

Those offering up this phony empirical argument have an obligation to present evidence in support of this fallacious correlation, or else to stop making this bigoted argument.

The reason there is no correlation is because extremist Muslims who kill American troops are not outraged at what Israel does, but rather at what Israel is – a secular Jewish, democratic state. As long as Israel exists, there will be Islamic extremists who regard that fact as a provocation. The same is true of the United States: as long we continue to exist as a secular democracy with equal rights for women, Christians and Jews, the Osama Bin Ladens of the world will seek our destruction. Certainly as long as American troops remain in any part of the Arab world – whether it be Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Iraq or Afghanistan – Muslim fanatics will try to kill our soldiers. Blame for the murder of American troops should be placed on those who kill them, rather than on those who stand for the same values of democracy and equality as America does.

In considering the relationship between the United States and Israel, several points must be kept in mind. First and foremost, the US and Israel are on the same side in the continuing struggle against Islamic extremists who endanger the lives of American troops and American civilians. Second, Israel is one of America’s most important strategic allies, providing us with essential intelligence, research and development and other important assets. Third, there is nothing that Israel or the United States can do that will turn these extremist enemies into friends. It is what we are, rather than what we do, that enrages those who wish to turn the entire world into an Islamic caliphate and subject us all to Islamic sharia law. Fourth, any weakening of the alliance between the United States and Israel will make it far less likely that Israelis – who get to vote on these matters – will take significant risks for peace. Fifth, the Obama administration’s public attacks on Israel will harden Palestinian demand and make it less likely that they will accept a compromise peace. Sixth, if Israel’s enemies were to lay down their arms and stop terrorist and rocket attacks against Israel, there would be peace. Seventh, if Israel were to lay down its arms, there would be genocide. And eighth, when the Palestinian leadership and population want their own state more than they want there not to be a Jewish state, there will be a two-state solution.

It is in the best interest of the United States, of the peace process and of Israel for disagreements between allies to be resolved quietly and constructively, so that progress can be made toward achieving a two-state solution that assures Israel’s security and Palestinian statehood.

A short history lesson…

March 5, 2010

Over five thousand years ago, Moses said to the children of Israel “pick up your shovel, mount your asses and camels, and I will lead you to the promised land”.

Nearly 75 years ago, Roosevelt said, “Lay down your shovels, sit on your asses, and light up a camel, this is the promised land”.

Now Obama has stolen your shovel, taxed your asses, raised the price of camels, and mortgaged the promised land.

Furthermore, I was so depressed last night thinking about Health Care
Plans, the economy, the wars, lost jobs, Savings, Social Security,
retirement funds, etc . . . I called Lifeline, the suicide help line. Got a freakin’ call center in Pakistan . I told them I was suicidal.

They all got excited and asked if I could drive a truck…