There are many issues that beg to be examined, but my attention has been drawn first to an alarming piece by Claire M. Lopez (with thanks to Dan F.).
The piece? "U.S. Keeps Joining the Forces of Jihad." If that title alone is not enough to get your attention you may be fast asleep. (Emphasis is added.)
"With the June 13, 2013 confirmation by senior Obama administration officials that the president has authorized sending weapons directly to Syrian rebels, there is a trend developing that can no longer be ignored. This is the third country and the third instance in which Barack Obama has leapt into the fray of revolution to the defense of al-Qa'eda and Muslim Brotherhood forces within days of an explicit call for action by Yousef al-Qaradawi, the senior jurist of the Muslim Brotherhood. While no ironclad case for linkage can be proven, even just the appearance, in and of itself, of responsiveness by the U.S. government to declared Brotherhood imperatives ought to be concerning.
"Speaking on Al-Arabiya Television on June 9, 2013, al-Qaradawi called for jihad in Syria:...
"Four days later, on June 13, Ben Rhodes, the Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications, announced that the intelligence community had arrived at an assessment 'that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons, including the nerve agent sarin, on a small scale against the opposition multiple times in the last year.' This conveniently-timed and entirely unsourced finding set the stage for the White House announcement the next day about Obama's authorization of military aid to the Syrian rebels. The Supreme Military Council, which claims leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood-dominated Free Syrian Army and is headed by BG Salim Idriss, has been selected to receive the weapons."
A clarification: In recent weeks, when other nations, including Israel, had confirmed to their leaders' satisfaction, via intelligence sources, that Assad had used chemical weapons, Obama was hemming and hawing, claiming he needed better evidence. He wasn't ready to act. How suspect, then, is this announcement that suddenly the intelligence community had arrived at an assessment regarding use of chemical weapons. Lopez's point here, which is critical, is very clear. The Obama administration fell back on assessments made in the recent past -- assessments he had labeled inadequate -- when it suddenly suited the president to act. There was no new evidence presented.
Lopez then proceeds to track the other occasions on which Obama pronouncements have followed al-Qaradawi pronouncements: First, with regard to the necessity of Mubarak departing from office. And then with regard to the situation in Libya. In the second instance, al-Qaradawi issued a fatwa (a religious ruling) calling for the murder of Qadaffi, and this was followed by Obama's signing a secret document authorizing support for the al-Qaeda dominated anti-Qadaffi forces. (What happened in Benghazi was directly related to this: Ambassador Stevens was the US liaison to those al-Qaeda dominated anti-Qadaffi forces.)
"It was the fall of rebel-held Qusayr to Syrian regime forces on June 5, 2013 that seemed to spur both the al-Qaradawi jihad fatwa and Obama's decision to follow suit and expand assistance to the al-Qa'eda and Muslim Brotherhood-led rebels.
"In each of these instances — Egypt, Libya, and now Syria — it is 'completely clear,' as Barry Rubin writes, 'that the United States is backing people who hate it.' It is also completely clear that, at least since President Obama green-lighted the Islamic Awakening in his June 2009 Cairo speech, U.S. policy has been turned upside-down: in very tangible terms, the U.S. government has joined the forces of jihad to overthrow the unfaithful Arab and Muslim rulers that the Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide Muhammad Badi so blatantly threatened (along with the U.S. and Israel) in his late September 2010 call for jihad. In so doing, U.S. leadership is deliberately and proactively enabling the self-declared forces of Islamic jihad and shariah, who make no secret of their enmity and loathing for the U.S. and Western civilization in general, to come to power in country after country of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
"The results have been disastrous...
"We have come full circle from going after al Qaeda to indirectly backing al Qaeda," said one US official, speaking about the recent decision to arm these jihadist Syrian rebels...
"The sooner U.S. senior leadership realizes that, whether Shi'ite or Sunni, jihadis fight for the same objectives — restoration of the Caliphate (or Imamate) and enforcement of Islamic Law — the better for American core national security interests..."
Are you deeply disturbed yet? Furious perhaps? In my humble opinion both reactions are appropriate. Will the American electorate continue to sit still for this, burying its collective head in the sand? Read this article in its entirety, please, and share as broadly as you can. Ask hard questions. Make your voices heard.
For the record: Currently a senior fellow at the Gatestone Institute, the Center for Security Policy and the Clarion Fund and vice president of the Intelligence Summit, Clare Lopez was formerly a career operations officer with the Central Intelligence Agency, a professor at the Centre for Counterintelligence and Security Studies, Executive Director of the Iran Policy Committee from 2005-2006, and has served as a consultant, intelligence analyst, and researcher for a variety of defense firms.
That is, she knows whereof she speaks.
An exclusive released yesterday by Steve Emerson's Investigative Project on Terrorism serves as a companion piece to the Lopez article. Written by David Martasko, it reveals the fact that a deputy of Yusuf al-Qaradawi (the very same al-Qaradawi alluded to by Lopez), Sheikh Abdallah bin Bayyah, met with staffers of the White House Security Council on June 13.
June 13? That's the very day that the Obama administration announced plans to arm Syrian rebels. How about that?
Bin Bayyah, who poses as a moderate, has referred to al-Qaradawi as "a mountain upon whose peak there is light" and as "a great reformer" who "spreads knowledge and wisdom."
According to the Investigative Project report, "Al-Qaradawi is generally considered the leading Islamic scholar affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood. He has called openly for the destruction of Israel and the deaths of all Jews, called Adolf Hitler a divine punishment for the 'misdeeds of the Jews' and claimed the Nazi Holocaust has been popularly exaggerated.
"Al-Qaradawi has also said he wants to die 'in the service of jihad' by blowing himself up in Israel and killing Jews in the process...
"The two clerics' close association has caused reputational trouble for bin Bayyah among Western governments, and the U.S. State Department has denied al-Qaradawi entry into the country since 1999. But the Obama administration welcomed bin Bayyah into the White House." (Emphasis added)
The report documents bin Bayyah's presence at a "December 2012 International Union of Muslim Scholars' board meeting in Doha, Qatar...The meeting ended with a call for the destruction of the state of Israel."
Gayle Smith, Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Development and Democracy at the National Security Council, met with bin Bayyah. According to the sheikh's website, so did National Security Adviser Tom Donilon (although that reference was erased after inquiries were made).
Read: EXCLUSIVE: Deputy of banned suicide-bomb-endorsing cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi had White House meeting with National Security Council staff
And then, a piece written by Raymond Ibrahim. Another analyst who knows what he's talking about, he is a Coptic Christian, American-born of Egyptian immigrants, and fluent in Arabic. A Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and an Associate Fellow at the Middle East Forum.
His article is entitled, "Obama to Egyptian Christians: Don't Protest the Brotherhood." In this instance, emphasis was in the original throughout.
"As Egyptians of all factions prepare to demonstrate in mass against the Muslim Brotherhood and President Morsi's rule on June 30, the latter has been trying to reduce their numbers, which some predict will be in the millions and eclipse the Tahrir protests that earlier ousted Mubarak. Accordingly, among other influential Egyptians, Morsi recently called on Coptic Christian Pope Tawadros II to urge his flock, Egypt's millions of Christians, not to join the June 30 protests.
"While that may be expected, more troubling is that the U.S. ambassador to Egypt is also trying to prevent Egyptians from protesting—including the Copts. The June 18 edition of Sadi al-Balad reports that lawyer Ramses Naggar, the Coptic Church's legal counsel, said that during [Anne] Patterson's June 17 meeting with Pope Tawadros, she "asked him to urge the Copts not to participate" in the demonstrations against Morsi and the Brotherhood.
"The Pope politely informed her that his spiritual authority over the Copts does not extend to political matters.
"Regardless, many Egyptian activists are condemning Patterson for continuously behaving like the Muslim Brotherhood's stooge. Leading opposition activist Shady el-Ghazali Harb said Patterson showed 'blatant bias' in favor of Morsi and the Brotherhood, adding that her remarks had earned the U.S. administration 'the enmity of the Egyptian people.' Coptic activists like George Ishaq openly told Patterson to 'shut up and mind your own business.'...
"Indeed, the U.S. ambassador's position as the Brotherhood's lackey is disturbing—and revealing—on several levels. First, all throughout the Middle East, the U.S. has been supporting anyone and everyone opposing their leaders—in Libya against Gaddafi, in Egypt itself against 30-year U.S. ally Mubarak, and now in Syria against Assad. In all these cases, the U.S. has presented its support in the name of the human rights and freedoms of the people against dictatorial leaders.
"So why is the Obama administration now asking Christians not to oppose their rulers—in this case, Islamists—who have daily proven themselves corrupt and worse, to the point that millions of Egyptians, most of them Muslims, are trying to oust them?
"What's worse is that the human rights abuses Egypt's Coptic Christians have been suffering under Muslim Brotherhood rule are significantly worse than the human rights abuses that the average Egyptian suffered under Mubarak—making the Copts' right to protest even more legitimate, and, if anything, more worthy of U.S support...
"Yet despite the fact that if anyone in Egypt has a legitimate human rights concern against the current Egyptian government, it most certainly is the Christian Copts, here is the U.S., in the person of Ms. Patterson, asking them not to join the planned protests.
"In other words, and consistent with Obama administration doctrine, when Islamists— including rapists and cannibals—wage jihad on secular leaders, the U.S. supports them; when Christians protest Islamist rulers who are making their lives a living hell, the administration asks them to "know their place" and behave like dhimmis, Islam's appellation for non-Muslim "infidels" who must live as third class "citizens" and never complain about their inferior status."
Shocking and shameful. What has the US become?
All other matters I had expected to write about today will keep until I write again. What is here must be digested thoroughly and used extensively.
© Arlene Kushner
. This material is produced by Arlene Kushner, functioning as an independent journalist. Permission is granted for it to be reproduced only with proper attribution.
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