Friday, May 31, 2013

Raymond Ibrahim: Islam's 'Rule of Numbers' Explains London Beheading

The following by Raymond Ibrahim is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

Islam's 'Rule of Numbers' Explains London Beheading

by Raymond Ibrahim
Fox News
May 28, 2013

Last week in London, two Muslim men shouting jihad's ancient war-cry, "Allahu Akbar" beheaded a British soldier with a cleaver—in a busy intersection and in broad daylight. They boasted in front of passersby and asked to be videotaped.

As surreal as this event may seem, Islamic beheadings are not uncommon in the West, including the U.S. In 2011, a Pakistani-American who helped develop "Bridges TV"—a station "designed to counter negative stereotypes of Muslims"—beheaded his wife. In Germany in 2012, another Muslim man beheaded his wife in front of their six children—again while hollering "Allahu Akbar."

"The Most Successful Christian Communities Embrace the State of Israel"

Eternity Envy

by Jonathan Rosenblum
Jerusalem Post
May 31, 2013

In response to the Church of Scotland's "An Inheritance of Abraham?," a veritable potpourri of reasons for rejecting the Jewish claim of a historical connection to the Land of Israel, the ever brilliant David Goldman offers one of his startling aperçus: "The most successful Christian communities embrace the State of Israel, while the least successful abhor it."

The Church of Scotland certainly falls into the latter category. Since 1956, the Church of Scotland has shed two-thirds of its members, and continues to lose them at a rate of 5% a year. (Ironically, in happier times for the Church of Scotland, it was a hotbed of Christian Zionism. A nineteenth century Church of Scotland cleric coined the phrase, "A land without people for a people without a land.")

Video: Latma Presents Europe Responds to its Random Violence and Shimon's World of Fun!

This week, Latma presents Europe's particular response to the violence there and why it's happening.


Here is the video:

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Video: Pat Condell -- Muslims Must Reject Jihad In Wake of Murder of Lee Rigby

One can say that Pat Condell goes over the top -- and its true that he could make the same point more delicately, more diplomatically.

But this is not a philosophical debate about some theoretical issue. Instead there are wars going on, terrorist attacks being conducted and innocent people being murdered by Islamist extremists basing themselves on the Koran, which they quote chapter and verse to support the killings.

And now in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing comes the murder of British soldier Lee Rigby in London by Michael Adebowale.

Even Condell recognizes there are moderate Muslims. His point is that Moderate Muslims need to stand up and be heard and rebut the extremists. That may be easier said than done, but is must happen.

Here is Pat Condell in action:

How The Obama Administration Aids The Spread of Al Qaeda Cells

The following by Raymond Ibrahim is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

The Calm Before the Jihadi Storm

by Raymond Ibrahim
The Blaze
May 23, 2013

On this Memorial Day, it's important to remember that the very same U.S. policies that created al-Qaeda in Afghanistan in the 1980s—leading to the horrific attacks of 9/11—are today allowing al-Qaeda to metastasize all around the Muslim world. As in the 80s, these new terrorist cells are quietly gathering strength now, and are sure to deliver future terror strikes that will make 9/11 seem like child's play.

To understand this dire prediction, we must first examine the United States' history of empowering Islamic jihadis—only to be attacked by those same jihadis many years later—and the chronic shortsightedness of American policymakers, whose policies are based on their brief tenure, not America's long-term wellbeing.

From MEQ 1998 -- "During Past Decade Arab Regimes Are More Repressive Than Before" (And Why)

The following by Hilal Khashan is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

The Arab World's Travails: History's Burden

by Hilal Khashan
Middle East Quarterly
March 1998, pp. 41-48

Stalemate in Syria Weakens Both Assad and Islamist Insurgents -- and Now Hezbollah As Well

Last month, Daniel Pipes made the case for Western support for the Assad regime in Syria. He based this on the idea of sustaining a stalemate between the tyrannical regime of Bashar Assad on the one hand and the Islamist insurgency forces on the other -- neither of whom are paragons of Western democratic values.

Pipes explains:
Evil forces pose less danger to us when they make war on each other. This (1) keeps them focused locally and it (2) prevents either one from emerging victorious (and thereby posing a yet-greater danger). Western powers should guide enemies to stalemate by helping whichever side is losing, so as to prolong their conflict.

His examples of past implementations of such a strategy are the Nazi invasion of Russia and the Iraq-Iran war.

Stalin, Hussein and Bashar Assad
Keeping dictators like Stalin, Hussein and Bashar Assad busy has benefits
Credit: Daniel Pipes

Now there appears to be an additional aspect to maintaining the stalemate in Syria.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Arlene Kushner on Kerry's Push For Peace -- And Why It Will Fail

From Arlene Kushner:
May 29, 2013


Ah that I were a mind reader.  But, alas, I am not.  So I garner as much information as I can, and rely on my analysis and my intuition.  Sometimes that's not enough.
Last time I wrote, I alluded to a statement by Strategic Affairs Minister Yuval Steinitz (Likud), who had  criticized Peres' eagerness for that "two state solution" and his fawning over Abbas.  Peres doesn't speak for the government, he said, and, "every declaration of this sort, certainly on the eve of negotiations, does not help Israel's stance." 
I caught that "on the eve of negotiations," and pointed it out with some unease, but with no certainty about what he was saying.
Yesterday, Steinitz had something else to say.  "The government’s position is very clear, and I support it: We do support two states for two peoples..."  he told Times of Israel."

Following Casualties in Syria, Revised Logo of Hezbollah Makes The Terrorist Group An Object of Derision

How bad are things going for Hezbollah in Syria?

Daniel Pipes notes Hizbullah's travails in a graphic:
The logo of Hizbullah, the Lebanese terror group, consists of a hand emerging from the Arabic spelling of the group's name ("Party of God") clutching an assault rifle, probably an AK-47.
But with the battle of Al-Qusayr underway near Homs, said to be a decisive confrontation in the Syrian civil war and the scene of significant losses of personnel by Hizbullah, a wit who goes by Aiham VAN Syria edited the organization's logo to fit the moment.

From MEQ 2000: Will Bashar Assad Rule? (Now the Question is Whether He Will Ever Stop!)

The following by Eyal Zisser is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum.

UN Human Rights Council Getting Ready To Promote Antisemitism Around The World

For Immediate Release:
May 28, 2013
Follow us on Twitter

How to Combat Antisemitism at the UN

This article by Anne Bayefsky originally appeared on The Jerusalem Post.

It is opening week of another session of the UN’s top human rights body, the UN Human Rights Council, and antisemitism will once again be promoted around the globe via an organization built on the ashes of the Jewish people and sworn to hatred’s eradication.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Is Kerry's $4 Billion Plan for Peace Between Israel and the Palestinians Already Dead in the Water?

Just this month, Secretary of State Kerry assured us he had made a breakthrough in Israel-Palestinian peace talks. Kerry claimed he had got the Arabs to agree to land swaps with Israel:
Although there is still a long way to go, Kerry said Tuesday, “I don’t think you can underestimate the significance of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Arab Emirates, the Egyptians, the Jordanians and others coming to the table and saying, ‘We are prepared to make peace now in 2013.’ ”
As it turned out, not only had he failed to get the Palestinian Arabs to support the revised Saudi Plan, but as it turned out, even among the other Arab countries there was no solid support for land swaps in conjunction with using the 1967 armistice lines as borders for a Palestinian state.

So when Kerry appeared Sunday at the World Economic Forum with a new plan, giving the Palestinian Arabs $4 billion for saving their economy in the interests of peaceful co-existence with Israel -- one would have thought that this time, Kerry would have made sure the Abbas regime was on board.

Kerry, Peres and Abbas
Kerry, Peres and Abbas -- was Abbas on board with Kerry's $4 billion plan
 before it was announced? Credit: State Department

Video: How to Lie about Israel -- and Get Away With It!

We all know that Abbas and the Palestinian Authority demand preconditions before negotiating with Israel. In fact, at any given time, there have been as many as 7 different preconditions the Palestinian Authority has placed on Israel before it will be willing to sit agree to peace talks:
  • Halt to all Israeli activity beyond the Green Line
  • 1967 lines as the basis for peace negotiations with mutually agreed land swaps
  • EU support for reconciliation talks between Hamas and Fatah
  • EU support for Palestinian UN statehood bid
  • EU acknowledgment that UN statehood bid does not contradict peace negotiations
  • Israel must release are Marwan Barghouti and Ahmad Saadat
  • Israel must end the siege on the Gaza Strip
Now HonestReporting has a video noting that Palestinian official Saeb Erekat claims that the "Palestinians" have no preconditions to sitting down and negotiating with Israel -- and the media buys this lie without question.

Here is the video:

Why Does Obama Want To Protect "Human Rights" of Islamist Terrorists -- But Not Of Christians?

The following by Raymond Ibrahim is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

Obama Administration Calls for the 'Human Rights' of Jihadi Murderers

by Raymond Ibrahim
PJ Media
May 25, 2013

It's well known that whenever jihadis attack and slaughter innocent people — especially Christians — the Obama administration tries to ignore or whitewash. Lesser known, however, is that whenever foreign governments try to subdue the jihadis, the Obama administration objects and calls for the "human rights" of the terrorists.

Will Kerry's $4 Billion Bailout of Abbas and Palestinian Authority Bring Peace To Palestinians And Israel?

In light of John Kerry's string of failures as Secretary of State thus far, one might consider Kerry's announcement at the World Economic Forum of a $4 billion plan to rescue the Abbas regime from itself might represent a breakthrough.

But putting aside the logic of pouring even more billions into the corrupt and incompetent regime headed by a man in the 9th year of a 4 year term, there are finer points that raise questions about the plan and about Kerry as well.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Arlene Kushner on Israel's Reaction to World Economic Forum in Jordan And Peres Statement

From Arlene Kushner:
May 27, 2013

What Is This?

It passes for "diplomatic" news of a sort, but consists in good part of unmitigated nonsense.
The World Economic Forum in Jordan has just ended; in attendance were Israeli President Shimon Peres, Secretary of State John Kerry and putative president of the PA Mahmoud Abbas -- all of whom spoke.
And it was the words of President Peres that caused many here in Israel to want to tear their hair out.  His statement included, first, this:
"...President Abbas, you are our partner and we are yours. You share our hopes and efforts for peace, and we share yours. We can and should make the breakthrough..."
And then, far worse:
"The 'Arab Peace Initiative' is a meaningful change and a strategic opportunity. It replaces the strategies of war with the wisdom of peace."
It is essential that I correct Peres here. 

Mideast Media Sampler 5/27/13: Nasrallah Promises Victory As Hezbollah Faces Heavy Lossed In Syria

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

1) Who shot at Hezbollah? 

Shortly after Hassan Nasrallah of Hezbollah proclaimed victory in Syria ... 
The leader of the Lebanese Shia militant Hezbollah movement, Hassan Nasrallah, has promised his supporters they will prevail in Syria, where they are backing President Bashar al-Assad. "This battle is ours... and I promise you victory," he said in a TV address. ... In the speech from an undisclosed location, Mr Hasrallah said if Sunni Islamists took over in Syria, they would pose a threat to the entire Lebanese population - Shia and Sunni Muslims, as well as Christians.
Syrian resistance is calling Nasrallah "the Dajjal". This is Arabic for: "That fat guy hiding in the basement of the Iranian embassy".
— Michael Ross (@mrossletters) May 26, 2013

From MEQ Spring 2001: Muslims on the Silver Screen -- Does Hollywood Dehumanize Them?

The following by Daniel Mandel is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Video: Jew Bashing: The New Anti-Semitism

Martin Himel has come out with a 4 part series entitled Jew Bashing: The New Anti-Semitism:
Using investigative journalism and hidden cameras, we reveal Antisemitism as it’s never been done before. We see Anti-Semitism on camera. Our goal is to experience this hatred, to understand its toxicity, instilling motivation to limit the scope of Anti-Semitism.

Some Anti-Semites believe Jews are Nazis. They even plotted the holocaust and 9-11. They control the Economy, the Government, the Media. Jews are an evil satanic cult hell-bent on destroying civilization. Oppose them at your peril.

Beliefs like these are not the deranged ranting of isolated conspiracy nuts. They are to be found in the respectable mainstream, from British politicians and from some members of the Christian and Islamic clergy. Websites that encourage Jew hatred rank in the top 1% of most popular websites worldwide.
So far 3 of the 4 episodes have aired:

Our investigative team exposes rabid Jew hatred on camera among the politicians ,clerics, columnists, and academics in Pakistan, the New Democratic Egypt , and among the Hamas dominated Gaza Strip.


In Europe we go undercover among Anti Zionist groups and show how Jews have been branded the New Nazis and how Anti Semitic bigotry is once again warning of mythical Jewish lobbies dominating and controlling Europe.


In the land of free speech Anti Semites call for Jewish extinction, so called Anti Zionists claim Jews dominate American politics, we go undercover into these groups and expose on camera virulent Anti-semitism.

Monday, May 27, 2013 at 9pm ET/6pm PT

Canada fights Anti-semitism with much tougher laws than America yet we show how militant Islamic groups, Anti-Hassidic activists, and Anti-Jewish web bloggers still pread Anti-semitism throughout the country and the world.
Here is the first episode:

At World Economic Forum, Will Kerry Add To His List of Diplomatic Blunders?

Before tackling today's news from the World Economic Forum, let's take a look at Kerry's track record so far.

Secretary of State John Kerry is nothing if not consistent as he goes gallivanting around the world exhibiting his diplomatic prowess:
Now, in his latest exhibition of his diplomatic prowess, Kerry now is telling Israel that Israeli ‘prosperity’ prevents sense of urgency about peace:

From MEQ 1996: Why Does the Muslim World Lag in Science?

And has anything happened to change this situation in the 17 years since this article was published?

The following by Aaron Segal is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

The Istanbul Process and US Support for Islamist Censorship of Free Speech

The following by Deborah Weiss is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum

U.S. Praises Sharia Censorship

by Deborah Weiss
May 24, 2013

The United States is silent as the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) passes its most recent UN Resolution that unravels global consensus to support freedom of speech.

From 1999-2010, the OIC succeeded in passing its "defamations of religionsresolutions, which ostensibly would protect Islam from all criticism, including true statements of fact. Though the name of the resolutions indicated that it would pertain to all religions equally, in the OIC's interpretation, it applied to Islam only.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

A Review of What We Know About Benghazi So Far: Issues and Sub-Scandals

The Benghazi Scorecard

by j
Yated Ne'eman
May 24, 2013

My guess is that Benghazi is about to be overshadowed by a slew of IRS-related scandals. For low-information citizens more interested in the tabloid fare served up in supermarket checkout lines, Benghazi is a long way away and its significance hard to pinpoint. Every one, however,deals with the IRS at one level or another.

But Benghazi will resurface in spades, if, as expected, Hillary Clinton decides to make a run for the presidency in 2016. Over her long public career, Hillary has been caught telling numerous lies. Remember her memory of landing under sniper fire in Bosnia. Remember the great "right-wing conspiracy" accusing her husband of improprieties.

None of her lies, however, reveal her Lady Macbeth-like ambition and ruthlessness to the same degree as her telling the father of slain Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods, as his son's coffin lay in front of them, that the U.S. government would arrest and prosecute the maker of the film that allegedly triggered the Benghazi attack, long after she knew conclusively that the video had absolutely nothing to do with that attack. (The government did, in fact, arrest the filmmaker, and he has been in jail since for probation violation.)

Because questions still remain and because the issue is so likely to resurface again it is worthwhile to review what we know at this point and what we can reasonably surmise.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Mideast Media Sampler 5/24/13: Does Current Mideast Chaos Mean Olmert's Offer To Abbas Gone Forever?

by David Gerstman, contributing blogger at Legal Insurrection

1) Missing another opportunity to miss an opportunity

Yesterday, The Tower published an exclusive story about the peace deal that Ehud Olmert offered Mahmoud Abbas in 2008 but that Abbas never accepted.

Today Isacharoff follows up with more detail in Olmert: ‘I am still waiting for Abbas to call’ – If This Offer Wasn’t Enough, How Can Anyone Believe The Palestinians Will Ever Say ‘Yes’?. Towards the end, Isacharoff quotes Olmert:

The Murder of Lee Rigby -- Typical of Other Examples of Islamist Mutilation

The following by Daniel Pipes is reposted here with permission:

Muslim Acts of Beheading in the West

by Daniel Pipes
May 23, 2013
Cross-posted from National Review Online, The Corner

Michael Adebolajo
Michael Adebolajo after murdering Lee Rigby on May 22, 2013, near London.
The gruesome murder yesterday of a soldier outside London by a Muslim convert, Michael Adebolajo, brings to mind that throat slitting and beheading are Islamically sanctioned forms of execution. Although these occur particularly often in the course of family-related crimes – think, for example, of the case of Aasiya Hassan in suburban Buffalo, N.Y., killed by her husband in 2009, stabbed with two hunting knives more than forty times in the face, back and chest, then beheaded – this monstrous form of violence is also used in non-family instances. Some of those that took place over the past decade in the West in chronological order include:

Video: Latma on Mohammed Al-Durah Muhammad and other PR victories

This week Latma takes a look at the Israel report on the Al Durah hoax -- presented 13 years after it took place. Also, a look at the questions raised over the cost of modest Netanyahu's lifestyle.

Here is the video:

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Daniel Pipes on The Obama Administration Bibliography Of Books About Islam

The following by Daniel Pipes is reposted here with permission:

The U.S. Government Compiles a Bibliography

by Daniel Pipes
The Washington Times
May 23, 2013

N.B.: WT title: An apology posing as a bibliography: An official book list discounts Islam's menacing side

At this moment of sequester and belt-tightening, the U.S. government has delivered a reading list on Islam.

My alternative bibliography.
The National Endowment for the Humanities has joined with two private foundations, Carnegie and Duke, to fund "Muslim Journeys," a project that aims to present "new and diverse perspectives on the people, places, histories, beliefs, practices, and cultures of Muslims in the United States and around the world." Its main component is the "Muslim Journeys Bookshelf," a selection of 25 books and 3 films on Islam sent to nearly 1,000 libraries as well as awebsite and some other activities. Marvin Olasky, who brought this project to public attention, estimates the whole project cost about US$1 million.

As one of the taxpayers who unwittingly contributed to this project as well as the compiler of my own bibliography on Islam and the Middle East, I take interest in the 25 books NEH selected for glory, spreading them around the country.

Arlene Kushner on Terrorist Beheading Of British Soldier in Great Britain and Implications

From Arlene Kushner:
May 23, 2013

"What Comes First?"

There are several items of news requiring attention that can, in one respect or another, knock you off balance.  

But let us start with this indisputable winner, because it will take the time required to read the rest of my post before you get your breath back. 

Most of you probably know that a UK soldier, not in uniform, was killed yesterday on the street in broad daylight by two Islamic terrorists -- both of whom are believed to be native British, and at least one reportedly a convert to Islam -- who then proceeded to behead him with a meat cleaver, while calling “Allahu akbar.”  Eye witnesses described the victim as having been hacked "like a piece of meat."  The terrorists were shot by police, taken to a hospital, and then arrested.


Many of the sites I pulled up when searching for data on this referred to a "likely terrorist event," or "what appears to be terrorism."  So tentative, so cautious.

A British security officer said it seemed to be "ideologically motivated." 
You think?


Will Calling For End to Blasphemy Laws Help Christians Persecuted By Islamists?

The following by Andrew Harrod is reposted here with permission:

Catholic Cardinal Calls for End to Blasphemy Laws

by Andrew Harrod
Frontpage Mag
May 21, 2013

Once favored to become pope
, Scola made his remarks at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart for the opening of a conference focusing on Roman Emperor Constantine's 313 Edict of Milan granting imperial toleration to Christianity.  Scola advocated a "healthy secularism" allowing religious freedom, defined by him as a "true litmus test" for a civilized society.  To Scola, this "freedom means above all encouraging religious pluralism and opening to all forms of religious expression," including "eliminating laws that criminally punish blasphemy."Speaking at a conference in Milan, Italy, on May 8, 2013, that city's archbishop, Cardinal Angelo Scola, called for the abolition of blasphemy laws worldwide.  Such a step would significantly help protect globally the freedom of speech and religion desperately needed by Christians in particular while countering Islamic fanaticism with freedom.

The Madness of Islamist Terrorism and How It Is Reflected In American Society

The following by David P. Goldman is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

Syria's Madness and Ours

by David P. Goldman
Asia Times
May 20, 2013

"Syria's Descent into Madness" is the cover story of the May 27 Time magazine, recounting the act of ritual cannibalism by a Syrian rebel commander that transfixed the West last week. The sort of atrocities viewable on YouTube - the slaughter by government troops of entire families including infants in Tartus province this month, mass rape of women in rebel-held zones, or the rebel leader Abu Sakkar eating a piece of the lung of a dead government soldier - are becoming Syria's new normal.

Westerners cannot deal with this kind of warfare. The United States does not have and cannot train soldiers capable of intervening in the Syrian civil war. Short of raising a foreign legion on the French colonial model, America should keep its military personnel at a distance from a war fought with the instruments of horror.

There is nothing new about the use of atrocities to persuade one's own forces to fight to the death because defeat would entail a dreadful retribution.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Arlene Kushner on Kerry's Visit to Israel, Parsing Lapid's Statement and Guessing Netanyahu's Intent

From Arlene Kushner
May 22, 2013

"Peace Process"

The notion that there can be a viable negotiation process that will result in peace with "two states side-by-side" persists whatever the overwhelming evidence to the contrary.  And so, no matter how weary we become of the delusion, we must continue to track efforts to make it happen, and combat it as effectively as possible.
As I wrote yesterday, Sec. of State Kerry is due here tomorrow.  And so there is a flurry of activity -- or, more accurately, perhaps, a deluge of words espousing one position or another -- in anticipation of his arrival.

Why FDR Wrote: "We the American Holy Warriors have fight the great Jihad of Freedom"

That's right: Franklin Delano Roosevelt wrote those words -- not Barack Obama.
Decades before JFK spoke to Germany in German, Roosevelt did something similar during WWII.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR)
Franklin Delano Roosevelt addressing Americans during
fireside chat. He also addressed the Muslim world in an
Arabic letter. Government photo.

Daniel Pipes writes that in October 1942, FDR Addresses the Arabs, sending an appeal in Arabic to the Muslim world in Arabic. The British forces had just succeeded in stopping Hitler's Afrika Korps, giving the Allies hope that they could successfully keep Germany out of the Middle East. In an effort to take advantage of this and win Muslim favor, Roosevelt sent the following message:

Is Egypt's Military Ready To Take Control Back From The Muslim Brotherhood?

A year ago, Dr. Jacques Neriah asked Are Egypt’s Islamists Headed for a Collision with the Military?

At the time, leading up to the presidential election, the apparent agreement between the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) led by Field Marshal Tantawi and the Muslim Brotherhood had already begun to unravel. It was becoming clear that it was the Islamists after all, and not Egypt's military, that was gaining power as the military began to lose favor.

We now see where that scenario led.

Egyptians protest
Protesters demonstrate against the arrest of Egyptian journalist
Yousef Shaaban on the steps of Cairo's journalist's syndicate. Credit: Al Jazeera

Yet today, Neriah analyzes how matters may have turned completely around, as he now poses the quesition
Is Egypt Heading toward a Military Regime?. Here is his summary of his article for The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs:

From Middle East Quarterly 1995: Does the Arabic Language Encourage Radical Islam?

The following by James Coffman is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

James Coffman is director of America-Mideast Educational and Training Services, Inc. (AMIDEAST), Tunisia.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Report: U.S. Government Funding for Mideast Political NGOs Undermines U.S. Policy

May 20, 2013 
Lenny Ben-David
NGO Monitor

Report: U.S. Government Funding for Mideast Political NGOs Undermines U.S. Policy

Jerusalem - A report presented to Members of Congress today by NGO Monitor shows that U.S. Government funding of several political NGOs in the Palestinian Authority and Israel contradicts U.S. policy, has a negative impact on the peace process, and lacks the independent oversight necessary to prevent abuses.

Professor Gerald M. Steinberg, President of NGO Monitor, a Jerusalem-based research institute, is meeting this week with Members of Congress, congressional staff, Washington think tanks, journalists and foreign policy decision-molders.

The 13-page report, The Negative Impact of U.S. Government Funding for Mideast Political NGOs, is written by Steinberg and Naftali Balanson, NGO Monitor Managing Editor. The 38-page appendicesinclude a directory of the political NGOs involved and correspondence with U.S. government agencies and officials.

Arlene Kushner on Russia Heating Up The Situation In Syria -- And Israel's Response

From Arlene Kushner:
May 21, 2013

Strong for All Things

There are multiple ways in which enormous strength is required of the Israeli government now.  In no situation is this more the case than with regard to Syria and armaments shipped there, either for use by Syria or for transfer to Hezbollah in Lebanon.
The situation is rife with threats, claims, charges, counter-charges, and rumors.
What seems to be the case is that Russia recently shipped its Yakhont anti-ship cruise missiles to Syria.  And this is bad news:

Jonathan Rosenblum: The Feminist Story the Media Missed at the Kotel

The Feminist Story the Media Missed at the Kotel

by Jonathan Rosenblum
Jerusalem Post
May 17, 2013

That the Women of the Wall's (WoW) monthly visits to the Western Wall will provoke insults, spitting, and sometimes worse from a group of haredim at the Western Wall is old news. But there was another story last Friday that the media either missed or botched entirely: the thousands of Jewish women and girls who filled the area directly in front of the Kotel and almost to the back wall of the Kotel plaza, completely dwarfing the group of one hundred or so women associated with WoW. (The figure of 400 to 500 WoW given by some media outlets is patent nonsense.)

When I arrived at the Kotel a little past 7:00 a.m., there were about 25 (not 2,000 as reported by Ha'aretz) young haredi men standing on the upper level at the far north of the Kotel Plaza shouting and ruining the prayers for all those on the men's side who had come to pray on Rosh Hodesh. (I had already heard on the radio that police had arrested one haredi man.) What surprised me, however, was that the most prominent video camera remained exclusively focused on this small group among the many thousands then at the Kotel.

Looking Back -- Both Democrats and Republicans Got The Arab Spring Wrong

The following by David P. Goldman is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

Dumb and Dumber

by David P. Goldman
Tablet Magazine
May 20, 2013

Errors by the party in power can get America into trouble; real catastrophes require consensus.

Rarely have both parties been as unanimous about a development overseas as they have in their shared enthusiasm for the so-called Arab Spring during the first months of 2011. Republicans vied with the Obama Administration in their zeal for the ouster of Egypt's dictator Hosni Mubarak and in championing the subsequent NATO intervention against Muammar Qaddafi in Libya. Both parties saw themselves as having been vindicated by events. The Obama Administration saw its actions as proof that soft power in pursuit of humanitarian goals offered a new paradigm for foreign-policy success. And the Republican establishment saw a vindication of the Bush freedom agenda.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Video: Professor Eugene Kontorovich on The Legal Case for Israel

Yesterday I posted the video of an interview with international law professor Eugene Kontorovich on the Jewish right to Israel and the double standards that are applied to it.

Here is a second, earlier, video -- this one of a lecture Professor Kontorovich gave last year on The Legal Case for Israel, featured on Torah Cafe.


Here is the video:

Nidra Poller on The Muhammad al-Dura Hoax

This Wednesday, the French Court of Appeal is expected to rule in the defamation case brought by France 2's Charles Enderlin against French media analyst Philippe Karsenty who accused Enderlin of fabricating the story of Mohammed Al-Durah.

In light of that, I am reposting the following 2011 article by Nidra Poller with permission of Middle East Media.

For more background information on the Al-Durah hoax, check out The Al-Durah Project, which gives you the opportunity to check out evidence -- including comparing raw footage of what happened with the edited version broadcast on France2.

Forget Iran -- What Are The Chances of Saudi Arabia Developing A Nuclear Capability?

The following by Naser al-Tamimi is reposted here with permission Middle East Forum:

Will Riyadh Get the Bomb?
Saudi Arabia's Atomic Ambitions

by Naser al-Tamimi
Middle East Quarterly
Spring 2013 (view PDF)

As the impasse over Tehran's nuclear program worsens, those most likely to be directly effected by an Iranian bomb are showing greater alarm. While the media fixates on Israel and its possible reaction, other regional players have no less at stake.

Despite Riyadh's long-held advocacy of making the Middle East a zone free of weapons of mass destruction, there has been much speculation in the last two decades about the possibility of its acquiring or developing nuclear weapons should Tehran obtain the bomb.[1] In the words of King Abdullah: "If Iran developed nuclear weapons … everyone in the region would do the same,"[2] a sentiment echoed by Prince Turki al-Faisal, former head of Saudi Arabia's General Intelligence Directorate.[3] Has Riyadh decided to go down the nuclear road, or is this bluster a desperate bid to stop Tehran's nuclear program dead in its tracks?

Iran Fears Growing Israel-Azerbaijan Cooperation

Iran Fears Growing Israel-Azerbaijan Cooperation

Lt.-Col. (ret.) Michael Segall
Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA)

  • The visit to Israel in April 2013 by Azeri Foreign Minister Elmar Mamadyarov intensified growing Iranian concerns over the tightening ties between Jerusalem and Baku, both of which view Iran as a threat. Iran's progress in its nuclear program and the failure of the nuclear talks with the West have raised Tehran's threshold of sensitivity about a military attack on its nuclear facilities, and it increasingly fears that Azerbaijan is turning into a base for such a strike.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Video: Eugene Kontorovich on Israeli Settlements -- Real International Law and Double Standards

Eugene Kontorovich is a Professor of Law at Northwestern and a contributor at The Volokh Conspiracy blog

In this video, Professor Kontorovich examines the actual issues of International Law as they apply to Israeli settlements and the double standards applied to them.

Also see his video on The Legal Case for Israel

Here is the video of his appearance on Shalom TV:

Obama Praises Turkey's Erdogan As Erdogan Puts A Knife in the US's Back

The situation is getting very dangerous and with a "friend" like Erdogan it is clear that Obama’s policy toward Syria, Iran, the advance of revolutionary Islamism, and the Israel-Palestinian “peace process,” is in serious trouble.
Barry Rubin

Barry Rubin writes about further signs of Obama's failed foreign policy as Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan Praised at White House as He Subverts U.S. Interests

Rubin notes 5 factors that should have mitigated against the warm reception that Obama gave Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan during his visit to the White House -- yet didn't. Here is a summary of 2 of them:

Raymond Ibrahim: Islamic Forced Conversions - Past and Present

The following by Raymond Ibrahim is reposted here with permission of Middle East Forum:

Islamic Forced Conversions - Past and Present

by Raymond Ibrahim
The Blaze
May 16, 2013

The lost history of Christians forced to convert to Islam—or die—is reemerging, figuratively and literally. According to the BBC: "Pope Francis has proclaimed the first saints of his pontificate in a ceremony [last Sunday] at the Vatican—a list which includes 800 victims of an atrocity carried out by Ottoman soldiers in 1480.They were beheaded in the southern Italian town of Otranto after refusing to convert to Islam."

The BBC adds in a sidebar: "The 'Martyrs of Otranto' were 813 Italians beheaded for defying demands by Turkish invaders to renounce Christianity. The Turks had been sent by Mohammed II, who had already captured the 'second Rome' of Constantinople."

In Germany, UN Helps Islamist Attack on Free Speech Against Thilo Sarrazin

The following by Andrew Harrod and Sam Nunberg is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

UN Pressures Germany to Bow to 'Hate Speech' Hysteria

by Andrew Harrod and Sam Nunberg
Frontpage Mag
May 16, 2013

A recent decision by the United Nation's (UN) Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) foreshadows an ominous future for free societies should Muslim entities like the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) achieve their goal of having "Islamophobia" defined internationally as a form of prejudice.

Former German central bank board member Thilo Sarrazin has got himself in trouble with the UN, as theTurkish Union in Berlin-Brandenburg (Türkischer Bund in Berlin-Brandenburg or TBB) stated with satisfaction in an April 18, 2013, German-language press release. The spokesman of this German-Turkish interest group, Hilmi Kaya Turan, praised a February 26, 2013, "historic decision" by the CERD condemning Germany for not having prosecuted Sarrazin's criticism of Arab and Turkish immigrants.

Why Is It Difficult For The West To Behave Rationally And Defend Itself Against Terrorism?

The Price of Blindness

by Jonathan Rosenblum
Jerusalem Post
May 3, 2013

In preparation for Yom Yerushalayim, I've just finished The Battle for Jerusalem: An Unintended Conquest by long-time Jerusalem Post reporter Abraham Rabinovich. (The book is an expanded e-book version of his 1972 classic.) Rabinovich interviewed over 300 combatants in the battle, and it shows. No one captures the experience of war from the fighters' perspective better than Rabinovich.

While reading The Battle for Jerusalem, it struck me that Israel's need to constantly defend itself against threats to its very existence from 1948 to the present, has prevented the most basic human instinct – the instinct for self-preservation – from atrophying here to the degree it has throughout the West.

Retiring Yale classicist Donald Kagan, 80, expressed concern in his valedictory interview with the Wall Street Journal's Matthew Kaminski that the delicate flower of democracy is threatened today. He laments the development of a culture that "makes it difficult for us [i.e., the West] to behave rationally when the rational thing is to be tough." He sums up the basic lesson of growing up in the tough Brownsville neighborhood of Brooklyn: "If you don't want trouble with someone be sure he has something to be scared of."

Kagan attributes the West's failure to absorb that lesson to culture and a lack of political leadership. Democracy, he argues, requires free, autonomous, and self-reliant population, and they are in increasingly short supply in an America of office workers and disability recipients.

Israelis, however, have been forced to be tough for wont of choice. And the experience of war has developed the qualities Kagan considers fundamental for democracy and the capacity for leadership.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

By Bungling Both Iran and Russia, Obama Continues To Empower Syria

For Immediate Release:
May 16, 2013
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Obama and Kerry's Fingerprints
All Over Syria Crisis

This article by Anne Bayefsky originally appeared on FOX News. 

In Syria, the motto for stopping the bloodshed might be summed up this way: when the going gets tough, the tough hold a conference. That’s the latest word from Secretary John Kerry and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov who are planning the event for some time in June. Neither Assad, nor the opposition, has committed to attend.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Egypt's Radical Clerics -- And What They Say About Christians, Moderate Egyptians and The US

The following by Raymond Ibrahim is reposted here with permission of the Middle East Forum:

Radical Cleric Swears to 'Pop America's Eye' if Moderate Morsi Threatened

by Raymond Ibrahim
Investigative Project on Terrorism
May 7, 2013

American Middle East analysts often claim that Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood is a moderate organization, nothing like the more radical Salafis. If true, what do we make of the fact that the most intolerant, anti-American, hate-filled Salafis and jihadis also happen to be the greatest and staunchest supporters of Morsi? Doesn't such unequivocal support indicate shared ideologies and goals?

Consider: A few weeks ago, while discussing the ongoing protests against Egypt's President Muhammad Morsi—himself a leader of the Brotherhood—Sheikh Abdullah Badr, an Al Azhar trained scholar and professor of Islamic exegesis, made the following assertion on live TV: