Rx: Agenda for Ambassador John Bolton: Guide President Trump with Iran, N. Korea, Islamist Terror

By Jed Babbin

The Washington Times , April 9, 2018

When former U.N. ambassador John Bolton steps into the national security adviser’s job next week, the hyperventilating media would have you believe that the first thing on his “to-do” list is to start a nuclear war with North Korea and probably launch an attack on Iran just because we can. That’s nonsense.

The media are terrified of Mr. Bolton because he is a conservative hawk and has made some very aggressive statements about the North Korean and Iranian regimes. He may be aggressive, but he’s neither crazy nor stupid.

Mr. Bolton will be the president’s third national security adviser, after retired generals Mike Flynn and H. R. McMaster. Mr. Flynn’s tenure was so brief he couldn’t accomplish much, which can’t be said of Mr. McMaster. He and departing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson dissuaded the president from taking some of the most important actions necessary to repair the damage to our nation’s security done by former President Obama.

There are at least four policy matters that could comprise an initial agenda for Mr. Bolton, each of which would significantly assist the president in bolstering our national security.

The first is to begin fighting the ideological war that Islamists have constantly waged against us and which we have never tried to counter. In August 2016 Mr. Trump, probably voicing what he had learned from Mr. Flynn, said, “Just as we won the Cold War, in part, by exposing the evils of communism and the virtues of free markets, so too must we take on the ideology of Radical Islam.”

Mr. Trump was right and strategically so. Radical Islamic terrorism is motivated by a religiously-based ideology. It can only be won by the defeat of that evil ideology.

Mr. McMaster has always insisted that there is no connection between Islam and terrorism. In that he is dangerously wrong. As national security adviser, Mr. Bolton, who better understands the threat, will be uniquely-positioned to commence and manage our ideological war. He will be able to assemble the best psychological warfare team from the CIA, the Pentagon and other agencies to craft and commence the campaign. He will be able to guide the president and other government leaders, to play their critical roles in defeating the Islamist ideology.

The ideological fight will take many years, perhaps decades, to win but there is no prospect of defeating this enemy unless it is won.

The next big item on Mr. Bolton’s agenda should be Mr. Obama’s 2015 nuclear weapons deal with Iran. Since his inauguration, Mr. Trump has been pressured — by Messrs. Tillerson and McMaster, as well as our European allies — to stick with the deal. 

In January, the president gave Iran and our allies until May to fix the deal’s defects, implying that unless it is fixed he will revoke it. No changes have been made. Mr. Bolton, from the outset highly critical of the deal, can be expected to press the president to do the right thing and cancel the deal in May.

Mr. Bolton steps into his new job at an opportune moment to address a third item on his agenda. The president is supposed to meet with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un in the next few weeks. Mr. Bolton will be able to advise the president on the pitfalls of any proposed agreement with Mr. Kim. 

When the meeting ends, as it almost certainly will with no agreement other than to talk again, he will be able to convince the president to do far more than has been done to improve our defenses against ballistic missile attacks.

One of the ways to improve our ballistic missile defenses is a space-based system called “Brilliant Pebbles” first unveiled in the 1990s. It is a system of small interceptor missiles, linked to our satellite missile tracking systems, which — even with 1990s technology — would have made America almost penetration-proof against such attacks. Modern technology would make the system even more effective depriving many adversaries, not just North Korea, of a “first strike” capability.

The fourth item on Mr. Bolton’s agenda should be to recommence sending captured terrorists to the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Mr. Obama stopped the military and the CIA from sending any terrorists to Gitmo in 2008.

Gitmo, isolated and secure, is a place where terrorists can be interrogated at length. Such interrogations, which take place over months and even years, have proven to be a consistent source of actionable intelligence.

We are constantly lectured, by the left and self-proclaimed human rights advocates, that we have no right to hold prisoners indefinitely and that Gitmo is a propaganda tool used to recruit more terrorists. Under the law of war, we can hold prisoners until the conflict is over. It has never been demonstrated that Gitmo benefits terrorist recruitment, but so what if it does? Gitmo — and the fact that no prisoners are tortured there, a fact that is verified by frequent inspections by international groups — is another weapon we should use in the ideological war.

Each of these four policy matters is important, the first three overwhelmingly so. John Bolton is one of the few people who is sufficiently smart and politically-savvy to make them happen.

• Jed Babbin, a deputy undersecretary of defense in the George H.W. Bush administration, is the author of “In the Words of Our Enemies.”

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A New Realism: America and Israel in the Trump Era by John Podhoretz

COMMENTARY  MAGAZINE 

JOHN PODHORETZ / FEB. 20, 2018

(After months of constant derision in COMMENTARY, even arch-typical  ‘elite intellectual snob’, editor,  John Podhoretz, finally comes down on the side of Donald Trump. Below, he presents a most impressive discussion as to why.) jsk

Of all the surprises of the Trump era, (to Podhoretz and the like) none is more notable than the pronounced shift toward Israel. Such a shift was not predictable from Donald Trump’s conduct on the campaign trail; as he sought the Republican nomination, Trump distinguished himself by his refusal to express unqualified support for Israel and his airy conviction that his business experience gave him unique insight into how to strike “a real-estate deal” to resolve the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. In addition, his isolationist talk alarmed Israel’s friends in the United States and elsewhere if for no other reason than that isolationism, anti-Zionism, and anti-Semitism often go hand in hand in hand.

But shift he did. In the 14 months since his inauguration, the new president has announced that the United States accepts Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and has declared his intention to build a new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem, first mandated by U.S. law in 1996. 

He has installed one of his Orthodox Jewish lawyers as the U.S. ambassador and another as his key envoy on Israeli–Palestinian issues. America’s ambassador to the United Nations has not only spoken out on Israel’s behalf forcefully and repeatedly; Nikki Haley has also led the way in cutting the U.S. stipend to the refugee relief agency that is an effective front for the Palestinian terror state in Gaza. 

And, as Meir Y. Soloveichik and Michael Medved both detail elsewhere in this issue, his vice president traveled to Israel in January and delivered the most pro-Zionist speech any major American politician has ever given.

Part of this shift can also be seen in what Trump has not done. He has not signaled, in interviews or in policy formulations, that the United States views Israeli actions in and around Gaza and the West Bank as injurious to a future peace. And his administration has not complained about Israeli actions taken in self-defense in Lebanon and Syria but has, instead, supported Israel’s right to defend itself.

This marks a breathtaking contrast with the tone and spirit of the relationship between the two countries during the previous administration. The eight Obama years were characterized by what can only be called a gut hostility rooted in the president’s own ideological distaste for the Jewish state.

The intensity of that hostility ebbed and flowed depending on circumstances, but from early 2009, it kept the relationship between the United States and Israel in a condition of low-grade fever throughout Barack Obama’s tenure—never comfortable, never easy, always a bit off-kilter, always with a bit of a headache that never went away, and always in danger of spiking into a dangerous pyrexia. 

That fever spike happened no fewer than five times during the Obama presidency. Although these spikes were usually portrayed as the consequences of the personal friction between Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, that friction was itself the result of the ideas about the Middle East and the world in general Obama had brought with him to the White House. In this case, the political became the personal, not the other way around.

Given the general leftish direction of his foreign-policy views from college onward, it would have been a miracle had Obama felt kindly disposed toward the Jewish state’s own understanding of its tactical and strategic condition. And Netanyahu spoke out openly and forcefully to kindly disposed Americans—from evangelical Christians to congressional Republicans—about the threats to his country from nearby terrorism and rockets, and a developing nuclear Iran 900 miles away. 

His candor proved a perpetual irritant to a president whose opening desire was to see “daylight” (as he said in February 2009) between the two countries. Obama caused one final fever spike as he left office by refusing to veto a hostile United Nations resolution. This appeared churlish but was, in fact, Obama allowing himself the full rein of his true and long-standing convictions on his way out the door.

The things Trump both has and has not done should not seem startling. They constitute the baseline of what we ought to expect one ally would say and not say about the behavior of another ally. But as Obama’s disgraceful conduct demonstrated, Israel is not just another ally and never has been. It is a unique experiment in statehood—a Western country on Mideast soil, born from an anti-colonialist movement that is now viewed by many former colonial powers as an unjust colonial power, created by an international organization that is now largely organized as a means of expressing rage against it.

Historically, American leaders have had to reckon with these unique realities—and the fact that the hostile nations surrounding Israel and hungering for its destruction happen to sit atop the lifeblood of the industrial economy. The so-called realists who claim to view the world and the pursuit of America’s interests through cold and unsentimental eyes have experienced Israel mostly as a burden.

Through many twists and turns over the seven decades of Israel’s existence, they have felt that America’s support for Israel is mostly the result of short-sighted domestic political concerns for which they have little patience—the wishes of Jewish voters, or the religious concerns of evangelical voters, or post-Holocaust sympathy that has required (though they would never say it aloud) an unnatural suspension of our pursuit of the American national interest.

Israel created problems with oil countries, and with the United Nations, and with those who see the claims for the necessity of a Jewish state as a form of special pleading. As a result, the realists have spent the past seven decades whispering in the ears of America’s leaders that they have the right to expect Israel to do things we would not expect of another ally and to demand it behave in ways we would not demand of any other friendly country.

The realists and others have spent nearly 50 years propounding a unified-field theory of Middle East turmoil according to which many if not all of the region’s problems are the result of Israel’s existence. Were it not for Israel, there would not have been regional wars in 1956, 1967, 1973, and 1982—no matter who might have borne the greatest degree of responsibility for them. 

There would have been other conflicts, but not this one. There would have been no world-recession-inducing oil embargo in 1973 because there would have been no response to the Yom Kippur War. Were it not for Israel, for example, there would be no Israeli–Palestinian problem; there would have been some other version of the problem, but not this one.

Unhappiness about the condition of the Palestinians in a world with Israel was held to be the cause of existential unhappiness on the Arab street and therefore of instability in friendly authoritarian regimes throughout the Middle East. Meanwhile, Israel’s own pursuit of what it and its voting populace took to be their national interests was usually treated with disdain at the very least and outright fury at moments of crisis.

It was therefore axiomatic that the solution to many if not most of the region’s problems ran right though the center of Jerusalem. It would take a complex process, a peace process, that would lead to a deal—a deal no one who believed in this magical process could actually describe honestly and forthrightly or give a sense as to what its final contours would be. If you could create a peace process leading to a deal, though, that deal itself would work like a bone-marrow transplant—through a mysterious process spreading new immunities to instability in the Middle East that would heal the causes of conflict and bring about a new era.

Again, this was the view of the (so-called) realists. With Israel’s 70th anniversary coming hard upon us, the question one needs to ask is this: What if the realists were nothing but fantasists? What if their approach to the Middle East from the time of Israel’s founding was based in wildly unrealistic ideas and emotions? 

Central to their gullibility was the wild and irrational idea that peace was or ever could be the result of a process. No, peace is a condition of soul, an exhaustion from the impact of conflict, born of a desire to end hostilities.  Only after this state is achieved can there be a workable process, because both parties would already have crossed the Rubicon dividing them and would only then need to work out the details of coexistence.

There was no peace to be had. The Arab states didn’t want it. The Palestinians didn’t want it. The Israelis did and do, but not at the expense of their existence. The Arabs demanded concessions, and the Israelis have made many over the years, but they could not concede the security of the millions of Israel’s citizens who had made this miracle of a country an enduring reality. The realists fetishized “process” because it seemed the only way to compel change from the outside. And so Israel has borne the brunt of the anger that follows whenever a fantasist is forced to confront a reality he would rather close his eyes to.

That is why I think what Trump and his people have done over the past 14 months represents a new and genuine realism. They are dealing with Israel and its relationships in the region as they are, not as they would wish them to be. They are seeing how the government of Egypt under Abdel Fattah el-Sisi is making common cause with Israel against the Hamas entity in Gaza and against ISIS forces in the Suez. 

They are witness to the effort at radical reformation in Saudi Arabia under Muhammad bin-Salman—and how that seems to be going hand in hand with an astonishing new concord between Israel and the Desert Kingdom over the common threat from Iran. This is a harmonizing of interests that would have seemed positively science-fictional in living memory.

Mostly, what they are seeing is that an ally is an ally. Israel’s intelligence agencies are providing the kind of information America cannot get on its own about Syria and Iran and the threat from ISIS. Israel is a technological powerhouse whose innovations are already helping to revolutionize American military know-how. Israel’s army is the strongest in the world apart from the regional superpowers—and the only one outside Western Europe and the United States firmly locked in alliance with the West. 

Things are changing radically in the Middle East, and as the 21st century progresses it is possible that Israel will play a constructive and influential role outside its borders in helping to maintain and strengthen a Pax Americana.

Donald Trump is a flighty man. (Podhoretz was compelled to put in this schtick) All of this could change. But for now, the replacement of the false realism of the past with a new realism for the 21st century seems like a revolutionary development that needs to be taken very, very seriously.

Why do the Arabs hate the so-called “Palestinian” Arabs so?


(An erudite in-depth history and explanation of the “Palestinian” Arab Refugee Scam)

Redacted from a much more detailed article

By Dr. Mordechai Kedar

www.israel-commentary.org

The Arab world, for many reasons, is not at all interested in giving the Palestinian Arabs a state. The Palestinian Arabs don’t really want one either, because why kill the “refugee” goose that lays the golden eggs?

In Israel, and in much of the Western world, we tend to think that the Arab world is united in support of the Palestinians, that it  wants nothing so much as to solve the Palestinian problem by giving them a state, and that all the Arabs and Muslims love the Palestinians and hate Israel.

This, however, is a simplistic and partial point of view, because while It is true that many, perhaps even the majority of Arabs and Muslims hate Israel, there are a good many who hate the Palestinians just as much.

Their hatred of Israel stems from Israel’s success in surviving despite wars, terror, boycotts and the enmity aimed at the Jewish state; it stems from the fact that there is an existing Jewish state even though Judaism has been superseded by Islam, the ‘true religion.’ 

It is exacerbated by Israel’s being a democracy while they live under  dictatorships, because Israel is rich and they are poor, because Israel is Paradise compared to Arab countries, many of which resemble nothing so much as the last train stop before Hell (see Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Sudan – and the list goes on) …and most importantly, because Israel has succeeded in areas in which they have failed, and their jealousy drives them up a wall.

But why should they hate the ‘unfortunate’ Palestinian Arabs? After all, the Arab narrative says that the Palestinian Arabs’ land was stolen and they were forced to become refugees. The answer to this question is complex and is a function of  Middle Eastern culture, which we in Israel and most Westerners neither understand nor recognize.

One of the worst things in Arab eyes is being cheated, fooled or taken advantage of. When someone attempts to cheat an Arab – and even more so, if that person succeeds – an Arab is overcome by furious anger, even if the person involved is his cousin. 

He will call on his brother to take revenge on that cousin, in line with the Arab adage: “My brother and I against my cousin – and my brother, my cousin and I against a stranger.”

Regarding the Palestinian Arabs, first of all,  many are not originally Palestinians at all. They are immigrants who came to the Land of Israel from all over the Arab world during the British Mandate in order to find employment in the cities and on the farms the Jews had built.    ( a fact universally ignored especially by Jew and Israel haters)

These supposed indigent “Palestinian” Arabs are themselves immigrants who still have names such as “Al Hurani (from Huran in southern Syria)”, “Al Tzurani (from Tyre in Southern Lebanon)”, “Al  Zrakawi (from Mazraka in Jordan),” “Al Maztri (the Egyptian)” and many other names that point to their actual, geographically origin – not “Palestine” or Israel. Why, ask the other Arabs, should they get preferential treatment compared to those who remained in their original countries?

Starting with the end of the 1948 Israeli War of Independence, the politics in the Arab world began to center on Israel and the “Palestinian problem” whose solution was to be achieved only by eliminating Israel. In order to help succeed in that mission, the Arab refugees were kept in camps, with explicit instructions from the Arab League to  keep them there and not to absorb them in other  Arab countries.

UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency – whose only customers are 3 generations of Arabs that should  have been resettled by their 20 Arab brethren nations 60 plus years ago!) guarantees unlike any other genuine refugees that they were provided with food, education and medical care without charge – that is to say, the nations of the world footed the bill, while the Arab neighbors of these eternal “refugees” had to work and provide food, education and medical care for their families by the sweat of their brow.  

Refugees who were supplied with free foodstuffs, such as rice, flour, sugar and oil, for the use of their families, would often sell some  of it to their non-refugee neighbors and make a tidy profit.

Those living in the refugee camps do not pay municipal taxes, leading to a significant number of “refugees” who rent their homes to others and  collect exorbitant sums in comparison with those renting apartments in nearby cities, thanks to this tax exemption. In other  words, the world subsidizes the taxes and the refugees line their own pockets .

In Lebanon, several refugee camps were built near Beirut, but were incorporated into the expanding city, then turned into high class neighborhoods with imposing high rise apartment buildings. Someone has profited from this change, and it is not the man in the  street, who has every reason to feel cheated.

The Palestinian “refugee” camps located in Lebanon have been taken over by armed organizations, from the PLO to ISIS, including Hamas, the Popular Front, the Democratic Front and organizations of Salafist Jihadists. These organizations act viciously towards surrounding Lebanese citizens and in 1975 brought on a civil war that  lasted for 14 long  years of bloodshed, destruction and saw the emigration of hundreds of thousands of real Lebanese from their villages to lives of horrible suffering in tent camps all over the country’ Many took  refuge in Palestinian “refugee” camps, but the Lebanese refugees received less than 10 per cent of what  Palestinian Arabs received, causing much internecine jealousy  and hatred.

In Jordan, in 1970, the Palestinian Arabs, led by PLO head Yassir Arafat, attempted to take over the country by establishing autonomous regions of their own, complete with roadblocks and armed Palestinian Arabs in the country’s north that challenged the monarchy. In September 1970, known as “Black September”, King Hussein decided he had had enough and would show them who is boss in Jordan. The  war he declared against  them cost thousands of  lives on both sides.

Meanwhile, in Israel,  20% of the citizenry within the pre-1967 borders is made up of “Palestinian” Arabs who do not rebel or fight against the state. In other words, the “Palestinians” living in pre-1967 Israel enjoy life in the only democracy in the Middle East, while the Arab countries sacrifice their soldiers’ blood to liberate “Palestine.” Is there a worse case of feeling that you are being exploited than that of an Arab soldier putting his life in danger for this meaningless cause?

Worse still is what every Arab knows: Palestinian Arabs have been selling land to Jews for at least a century, profit immensely from the deals and then go wailing to their Arab brothers to come and free “Palestine” from the “Zionist occupation.”

Over the years, the Palestinian Arabs were given many billions of euros and dollars by the nations of the world, so that the yearly per capirta income in the PA is several times greater than that of the Egyptian, Sudanese or Algerian man in the street. His life is many, many times better than that of Arabs living in Syria, Iraq, Libya and Yemen over the past seven years,

On a political level, the Palestinians have managed to arouse the hatred of many of their Arab brethren: In 1990, Arafat supported Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. In revenge, Kuwait, once it was freed of Iraqi conquest, expelled tens of thousands of Palestinians, most of whom had been employed in its oil fields, leaving them destitute overnight. This led to an economic crisis for their families in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, who had been receiving regular stipends from their sons in Kuwait.

Today, Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad are supported by Iran, the country abhorred by many Arabs who remember that airplane hijacking and the ensuing blackmail were invented by the Palestinian Arabs who hijacked an El Al plane to Algiers in 1968, fifty years ago, beginning a period of travail still being endured by the entire world.

Despite the 1989 Taif agreement that ended the civil war in Lebanon and was supposed to lead to the de-weaponization and dissolution of all the Lebanese militias, Syria  allowed Hezbollah to keep its arms and to develop its military power unrestrainedly. 

The repeated excuse was that the weapons were meant to “liberate Palestine” and would not be aimed at the Lebanese. To anyone with a modicum of brains, it was clear that  the Palestine story was a fig leaf covering the sad truth that the weapons were going to be aimed at Hezbollah’s Syrian and Lebanese enemies. “Palestine” was simply an excuse for the Shiite takeover of Lebanon.

Worst of all is the Palestinian demand that Arab countries refrain from any relations with Israel until the Palestinian problem is solved to the satisfaction of the PLO and Hamas leaders. 

However, a good  portion of the Arab world cannot find any commonalities that could unite the PLO and  Hamas. They have given up on achieving an internal Palestinian reconciliation, watching the endless squabbles ruin any chances of progress regarding Israel. 

To sum up the situation, the Arab world – that part of it which sees Israel as the only hope in dealing with Iran – is not happy at the expectation that it must mortgage its future and  its very existence to the internal fighting between the PLO  and Hamas.

And let us not forget that Egypt and Jordan have signed peace agreements with Israel, have moved outside the circle of war for the “liberation of Palestine” and have  forsaken their Palestinian Arab “brothers,” leaving them to deal with the problem on their own.

Much of the Arab and Muslim world is convinced that the “Palestinians” do not want a state of their own. After all, if that state is established, the  world will cease to donate those enormous sums, there will be no more “refugees” and the Palestinian Arabs will have to work like everyone else. How can they do that when they are all addicted  to receiving handouts without any strings attacked?

One can say with assurance, that 70 years after the creation of the “Palestinian problem,” the Arab world has realized that there is no solution that  will satisfy those who have  turned “refugee-ism”  into a profession, so that the “Palestinian problem” has  become an emotional and financial scam that only serves to enrich the corrupt leaders of Ramallah and Gaza.

Translated by Rochel Sylvetsky, Senior Consultant to A7 English site, Op-ed and Judaism editor.

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Black Congressional Caucus Stands by its Man – Louis Farrahkan!

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(Note: Members of Caucus must be Black by Unwritten Rule – 49 total members  and virtually all Democrat  48 Democrat, 1 Republican (Mia Love Utah).  White guy turned down in 2006 for being white!)

Redacted from article 

By Valerie Richardson – The Washington Times

March 19, 2018

Members of the Congressional Black Caucus and Women’s March co-President, Tamika D. Mallory, have come under fire this month for failing to condemn Louis Farrakhan after revelations that they met with or appeared at events with the notorious anti-Semite.

The Republican Jewish Coalition has called on eight black lawmakers to resign over their Farrakhan association. Not all have commented, but those doing so have been careful to denounce anti-Semitism without condemning the Nation of Islam leader himself.

Is that enough? Not for the Anti-Defamation League, which called it “disturbing to see people of good conscience and character meeting with this individual whose worldview is so warped and tainted by anti-Jewish conspiracy theories.” “We hope that political leaders will reject meetings with him in the future and denounce him for the bigot he really is,” the ADL said in a statement.

For Democrats, the Farrakhan flap threatens to fray the progressive coalition in Congress by exacerbating tensions with Jewish voters already worried about the party’s direction as anti-Israel movements such as Boycott, Divest and Sanctions gain steam on the left.

Liberal Jews who have joined anti-Trump rallies sponsored by the Women’s March have been taken aback by revelations over the group’s links to Mr. Farrakhan, including social media photos showing him holding hands with Ms. Mallory and board member Carmen Perez.

“Many progressive Jews have reacted with shock to the Farrakhan adoration from leaders of the Women’s March,” said Cornell Law School professor William A. Jacobson. “That Farrakhan connection, however, has been public and unapologetic for years.”

Even before Mr. Farrakhan gave a shout-out to Ms. Mallory at his Feb. 25 Saviours’ Day speech, the Women’s March had been accused of anti-Semitism through its link to convicted Palestinian terrorist Rasmea Odeh, who has been embraced by Women’s March leader Linda Sarsour.

“Rather than treating the alignment of the Women’s March leaders with a notorious anti-Semite as an aberration, progressive Jews need to ask themselves whether it reflects a deeper anti-Semitism in the progressive world, masquerading as anti-Zionism,” said Mr. Jacobson, who runs the conservative Legal Insurrection blog.

Republican National Committee blasts ‘hateful eight’

The uproar also has touched off scrutiny of the relationship between the Nation of Islam and the black political establishment, which can be traced to 1984, when Mr. Farrakhan rushed to defend Jesse Jackson in the Democratic presidential primary after he was reamed for calling New York “Hymietown.”

Some hailed Mr. Farrakhan as a hero for leading the 1995 Million Man March, a rally on the National Mall aimed at uniting black men and promoting self-reliance against economic and social ills.

The result is that Mr. Farrakhan, 84, has apparently become politically untouchable in some pockets despite repeatedly denouncing Jews in public, including during his Feb. 25 Saviours’ Day speech in which he blasted “the Satanic Jew” and said that “powerful Jews are my enemy.”

Even the left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center has listed the Nation of Islam as a “hate group” and condemned Mr. Farrakhan’s tirades against “wicked Jews” and gays.

“In reality, Farrakhan has done almost nothing for black America,” said Mr. Magida. “The Nation of Islam, under Elijah Muhammed at least, had certain economic programs that marginally helped African-Americans. He has done nothing to help African-Americans economically, socially, educationally, intellectually.”

In politics, however, where perception is often reality, black leaders who renounce Mr. Farrakhan may pay a political price if they are seen as kowtowing to outside pressure.“If you do renounce him, are you then seen as an Uncle Tom?” asked Mr. Magida.

The Republican National Committee issued a press release Tuesday detailing the links between Mr. Farrakhan and the eight Black Caucus members, dubbing them “the hateful eight.”

A video taken at a 2006 caucus event showed Mr. Farrakhan hugging and shaking hands with several Democratic members of Congress, including Reps. Al Green of Texas, Barbara Lee of California and Maxine Waters of California. Assistant Minority Leader James E. Clyburn of South Carolina — the House’s third-ranking Democrat — shared a stage with him in 2011, and Rep. Andre Carson, Indiana Democrat, acknowledged Friday that he had met with Mr. Farrakhan.

Democratic National Committee Deputy Chairman Keith Ellison has taken heat for reports linking him to Mr. Farrakhan after 1995, despite saying he has had no relationship with him since the Million Man March.

Even President Obama was pulled into the fray after a long-suppressed 2005 photo surfaced showing him with Mr. Farrakhan at a caucus gathering. Mr. Obama has not commented publicly on the photo.

“It is not sufficient to condemn anti-Semitism without condemning the nation’s leading anti-Semite,” Mr. Siegel said. “If members of Congress met with David Duke and then refused to condemn him, they would have been forced to resign long ago. The right moral action is for the Farrakhan members to resign.”

 

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Arab Leaders Change Gear on Palestinian Distortion

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By Walter Russell Mead

Wall Street Journal, April 3, 2018

Facing threats from Iran and Turkey, they want peace—and to strangle Hamas.

On the surface it was business as usual in the Gaza Strip. Hamas bussed thousands of residents to the border with Israel to begin a six-week protest campaign ahead of the 70th anniversary of Israel’s independence—or, as the Palestinians call it, the nakba, or “catastrophe.” This protest would mark “the beginning of the Palestinians’ return to all of Palestine,” according to Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh.

It didn’t. Stones were thrown, tires were set aflame, and shots were fired. When the smoke cleared, the borders were still in place and 15 Palestinians lay dead, with three more succumbing later from injuries. While families endured their private tragedies, familiar controversies swirled. The usual people denounced Israel in the usual ways, countered by the usual defenders making the usual arguments.

But what is happening in Gaza today is not business as usual. Tectonic plates are shifting in the Middle East as the Sunni Arab world counts the cost of the failed Arab Spring and the defeat of Sunni Arabs by Iranian-backed forces in Syria.

In headier times, pan-Arab nationalists like Gamal Abdel Nasser and lesser figures like Saddam Hussein dreamed of creating a united pan-Arab state that could hold its own among the world’s great powers. 

When nationalism sputtered out, many Arabs turned to Sunni Islamist movements instead. Those, too, have for the time being failed, and today Arab states seek protection from Israel and the U.S. against an ascendant Iran and a restless, neo-Ottoman Turkey.

But the American protection on which Arabs rely cannot be taken for granted, as President Trump’s apparent determination to withdraw U.S. forces from Syria in the near term demonstrates. Under these circumstances, Israel’s unmatched access to Washington makes Jerusalem even more important to Arab calculations. Perhaps only Israel can keep the U.S. engaged in the region.

It is against this backdrop that the old Palestinian alliance with the Arab nations has frayed. Most Arab rulers now see Palestinian demands as an inconvenient obstacle to a necessary strategic alliance with Israel. 

The major Gulf states and Egypt apparently have agreed on two goals. The first is to strangle Hamas in Gaza to restore the authority of the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority. The second is to press the authority to accept the kind of peace that Israel has offered repeatedly and that Yasser Arafat and his successor have so far rejected.

Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority are playing for time. They support the first goal by refusing to pay the salaries of government employees in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip even as they resist pressure to make peace with the Jewish State. It is not yet clear what the authority’s final response to the peace pressure will be. Even if it ultimately decides to accept an Arab-sponsored compromise, making a show of resistance can improve its credibility with the Palestinian public and, perhaps, extract better terms.

Hamas is in an even more desperate plight. The Arab blockade and donor strike cripples Gaza in ways the Israelis never could. Food is growing scarce, electricity is erratic, unemployment exceeds 40%, and raw sewage runs into the sea. Many Gaza residents presumably want the only thing Hamas can’t offer: relief.

Historically Hamas has reacted to this kind of pressure by launching wars against Israel, trusting its friends abroad to force the Jewish state to cease fire before it can inflict serious damage on Hamas’ leadership. But in the 2014 war, Arab foot-dragging gave Israel time to deal a serious defeat to Hamas. Another war would be equally ruinous and for the same reason: The Arab governments want Hamas crushed, and they won’t stop Israel from doing the job.

The current demonstrations, Hamas hopes, can whip up a global wave of rage and indignation against Israel without provoking a full-on war. That might weaken the Arab coalition against it. But the prime audience for Hamas’s performance this time isn’t the Arab world; it is Turkey and Iran, whose support Hamas will need to survive if it is driven from Gaza (as Arafat was once driven from Jordan and Lebanon).

Rifts between Palestinians and other Arabs are nothing new. But the collapse of Arab nationalism and the failure of Sunni radicalism have weakened the political forces that rallied Arab support to the Palestinian cause. With millions of new Arab refugees in Syria, and growing threats to Arab independence from powerful neighbors, prioritizing Palestine is a luxury many Arabs feel they can no longer afford.

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The Greek Church and the Jews

By Jerome S. Kaufman

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Last week I decided to attend the funeral services of a friend of mine. He was a good guy, always kind to me but to be honest, I think I was simply following Yogi Berra’s advice when he declared that he attended his friends’ funerals in the hope that they would attend his!

I sat quietly listening, in the very impressive ornate Greek church, to the somber melodious  Greek chant coming from the deep voice of the huge Greek priest and I tried not to fall asleep – like I do in my own synagogue services.

Then my ears suddenly perked up when the priest lapsed into a bit of the English translation.  I heard him say something about Jesus and how he told the Jews to follow his teachings. Huh!

Excuse me, but what has Jesus and the Jews got to do with this funeral service and how did this priest know what Jesus said to the Jews? And, what could it have possibly been anyway, except the same vile anti-Semitic distribe and lies that have permeated the Roman Catholic churcn, the Eastern Orthodox  churches  and the Protestant churches of Martin Luther and John Calvin for the  past near 2000 years?

Then I told myself, please don’t get excited.  Just Google, The Greek Liturgy and the Jews,  and see what comes up.  Sure enough, at the top of the list was the article quoted below confirming my worst suspicions.

But, before we read the Greek article, please let us happily acknowledge that within the last 50 years there have been major Catholic Church changes and admonitions against the preaching of Jew-hatred by the Church and its officials.

In fact, after centuries of perpetual hatred, formal dialogue between Roman Catholics and Jews began about 50 years ago, with the Vatican’s 1965 Nostra Aetate declaration. The declaration finally and formally repudiated the charge that Jews were collectively responsible for killing Jesus and stressed the religious bond between Jews as the big brothers of the Church.

Also of note is the fact that the Jews’ dedication to monotheism pre-dated that of the Christians by over 3000 years and it was adopted by the Church as a result of the teachings of a Jewish carpenter named  Jesus Christ.

DECLARATION ON THE RELATION OF THE CHURCH TO NON-CHRISTIAN RELIGIONS, NOSTRA AETATE, PROCLAIMED BY HIS HOLINESS POPE PAUL VI ON OCTOBER 28, 1965.

Thirty five years later, Israeli Jews were treated to an official visit by the very kind, empathetic Pope John Paul II who had actually lived with and through the horrific World War II  killing of the Jews by the Poles,  the Germans and with the enthusiastic support of almost all of the rest of Europe.

Pope John Paul II arrived in Israel, March 21, 2000, for a historic five-day visit, during which he visited the holy sites of the three major religions and met with Israel’s political leaders and Chief Rabbis. His Yad Vashem speech was viewed as the inspiring  climax of John Paul’s great efforts to reconcile Christians and Jews.

There is no doubt that the Vatican Declaration of Nostra Aetate and the very personal involvement and preaching of Pope John Paul II has had a major positive effect upon most Roman Catholics. They are no longer blaming the Jews for the death of Jesus Christ nor are they heaping upon the Jews whatever other calumnies  are in fact, their own responsibility.

Finally, to the article on the Greek liturgy that had perked up my ears:

PRIESTS DEMANDED  TO REMOVE ANTI-SEMITIC LITURGY

Exclusive: Jews called ‘God-killers’ in Orthodox sects’ Easter prayer services.

BY ETGAR LEFKOVITS APRIL 20, 2007

April 20, 2007, A group of 12 Orthodox priests have called on their Eastern Orthodox  Churches to review its longstanding theological positions toward Jews and the State of Israel, and to excise anti-Semitic passages from its liturgy.

The dissident priests made their demands in a 12-point declaration adopted during a weeklong visit to Israel that is meant to spur debate in the Eastern Orthodox Christian world and to challenge centuries-old anti-Semitic views.

“Sadly, there are some Orthodox Christians who propagate disgusting anti-Semitism under the banner of Orthodoxy, which is incompatible with Christianity,” said Rev. Innokenty Pavlov, professor of theology at Moscow’s Biblical Theological Institute.

“We have to raise our voices and call on Orthodox laity and the Church leadership to formulate an official position of the Orthodox Church toward our relations with Judaism, as it was formulated a few decades ago by the Catholic Church,” he added, referring to the Second Vatican Council of 1962 to 1965.

The 10-page declaration issued Thursday calls for the renunciation of replacement theology and the removal of anti-Semitic passages from Church liturgy – particularly Easter services – and endorses the eternal connection between the Jewish people and the Land of Israel.

The passages appear in the standard Orthodox liturgy all over the world. The dozen Orthodox priests who signed the declaration – some in open defiance of directives from church leadership – represent five different Orthodox churches, including the Russian, Greek, Ukrainian, Georgian and Ecumenical Orthodox Churches. “We came to the firm belief that it is high time for the Orthodox Church to correct its attitude toward Jews and Judaism,” the declaration states.

Unlike the Catholic and Protestant churches, the Orthodox Church has never removed anti-Semitic passages from its liturgy, which still refers to Jews as Christ killers, said Dr. Dmitry Radyehsvky, director of the Jerusalem Summit, a conservative Israeli think tank that co-sponsored the visit.

He said the anti-Semitic passages were most conspicuous during Easter services, and included statements such as “the Jewish tribe which condemned you to crucifixion, repay them, Oh Lord,” which is repeated half a dozen times, and “Christ has risen but the Jewish seed has perished,” as well as references to Jews as “God-killers.”

“Orthodox Christianity lives up to its name: it’s extremely conservative – even more than Catholicism,” Radyehsvky said. “For them to even pose the question about the need to throw out Judophobic passages from the liturgy, which were there for 1,500 years, is a revolution,” he said.

Radyshevsky said that while some of the best Orthodox Christian philosophers of the 19th and 20th centuries, like Vladimir Soloviev and Sergiy Bulgakov, were philosemites, it never filtered down to the masses.

Now, however, some Orthodox Christian intellectuals feel their church needs revival and that this has to start with their roots: reconciliation with the Jews. “It is high time to start the dialogue between Orthodox Christianity and Judaism,” said Rev. Ioann Sviridov, editor-in-chief of the Russian Christian radio-station Sophia.

“In light of rising anti-Semitism and other manifestations of nationalism in Russia, our church has to respond to this ugly phenomena and review some of the aspects of its relations with Jews and Judaism,” he said.

(I love the demands above but,  from my own last week’s experience at the local Greek Church, they  seem to have fallen upon deaf ears)  jsk

One final aside — I never could really understand another indisputable  “achievement” of the  Greeks during WWII.

From: The Jewish-Greek Tragedy during the Holocaust — The Illusion of Safety.

By Curt Leviant

The first book of a four part series depicts the Greek Jews under 3 Zones of German occupation during WW II —  German, Bulgarian and Italian. “Although the Bulgarians protected their Jews, in the Greek zone this benevolence was set aside. The Greeks  deported 11,000 Jews to concentration camps and only 2200 survived!  In the Italian zone, Jews were not persecuted and racial laws were ignored.

One can’t wonder whether or not the mindless poison pouring out of the sermons of Eastern Orthodox Churches, to this very day,  had anything to do with these damning statistics?

Jerome S. Kaufman, Editor/Publisher

Israel Commentary

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Bolton’s appointment — a brilliant “America first” move by President Donald Trump

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Redacted from an article originally published at Breitbart.com.

By Carolyn Glick

President Donald Trump’s decision to appoint former UN Ambassador John Bolton to serve as his National Security Advisor is arguably the most significant single step he has taken to date toward implementing his America First foreign policy.

The news hit America’s enemies and competitors — from Pyongyang to Teheran to Moscow to Beijing — like a wall of bricks Thursday night.
Early criticisms on the political right of Bolton’s appointment have centered on two points. First, it is argued that Bolton, who has been involved in U.S. foreign policymaking since the Reagan administration, is a creature of the Washington foreign policy swamp.

While it is true that Bolton is from Washington – or Baltimore, to be precise – and although it is true that he held senior foreign policy positions in both Bush administrations, he has always been a thorn in the side of the establishment rather than a member of that establishment.

For the better part of three decades, Bolton has bravely held positions that fly in the face of the establishment’s innate preference for appeasement. He was a vocal critic, for example, of then-President Bill Clinton’s disastrous nuclear diplomacy with North Korea.

The 1994 “Agreed Framework” that Clinton concluded with Pyongyang was touted as a peaceful resolution of the nuclear crisis with North Korea. In exchange for shuttering – but not destroying — its nuclear installations, North Korea received light water reactors from the U.S. and massive economic relief.

As Bolton warned it would, North Korea pocketed the concessions and gifts and continued to develop its nuclear weapons. In other words, far from preventing North Korea from developing nuclear weapons, the Agreed Framework preserved the North Korean nuclear program and enabled the regime to develop it effectively with U.S. assistance.

For his warnings, Bolton has been reviled as a “warmonger” and a “superhawk” by the foreign policy elite, which has gone out if its way to undercut him.

President George W. Bush appointed Bolton to serve as UN ambassador in 2005 in a recess appointment. Three moderate Republicans on the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, Lincoln Chafee (RI), Chuck Hagel (ND), and George Voinovich (OH), signaledthat they would oppose Bolton’s confirmation, blocking it.

At the time, rumors surfaced that then-Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had quietly undercut Bolton’s confirmation in private conversations with senators. Those rumors were denied, and Rice publicly supported Bolton’s confirmation.

But in 2016, Rice, along with her mentor, former secretary of state James Baker, and her deputy and successor as National Security Advisor, Stephen Hadley, openly opposed President Trump’s intention to appoint Bolton Deputy Secretary of State. At the same time, all three lobbied Trump to appoint outgoing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

Bolton was a vocal opponent of Rice’s nuclear diplomacy with North Korea, undertaken after Pyongyang conducted its first nuclear test in 2006. He also opposed Rice’s pursuit of diplomatic ties with Iran through negotiations in Iraq. In both cases, as events showed, Bolton’s criticisms were all in place.

Rice’s nuclear diplomacy with North Korea emboldened the regime, and enabled its continued testing of nuclear weapons and development of ballistic missiles.

In Iran’s case, Rice’s negotiations with the Iranians in 2007 and 2008 set the stage for president Barack Obama’s nuclear talks with Tehran, which led to the 2015 nuclear deal. That deal, like the 1994 Agreed Framework with North Korea, preserves, rather than dismantles, Iran’s nuclear program while providing Iran with the financial means to expand its regional power through its terrorist proxies.

On the other hand, Bolton’s actions while in office brought extraordinary benefit to US national security. For instance, as Bush’s undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, in 2003 Bolton conceptualized and launched the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI). The purpose of the PSI was to empower nations to interdict ships suspected of carrying weapons of mass destruction, delivery systems, and related materials from states and non-state actors of proliferation concern. Originally launched with 11 state members, today the PSI has 105 state members. Its members have interdicted multiple ships suspected of transferring illicit weapons systems to other states and to non-state actors.

Like Trump, Bolton is an opponent of international treaties that bind the U.S. in a manner that may be antithetical to its national interests, and prefers bilateral agreements that are tailor-made to defend America’s national interests. Bolton was a firm opponent of the Rome Treaty, which established the International Criminal Court. He worked avidly to vacate America’s signature from the treaty.

Due largely to his cogent opposition, the Bush administration decided not to submit the treaty to the Senate for ratification. Bolton concluded 100 bilateral treaties with nations committing them never to present complaints against U.S. military personnel before the tribunal.

Bolton’s nationalist convictions, and his refusal to join the foreign policy elite in its adoration of diplomacy, whatever the substance, over a firm, fact-based pursuit of America’s national interests lies at the heart of the foreign policy establishment’s opposition to him.

Indeed, the level of hostility the foreign policy establishment has directed towards Bolton over the years has been so ferocious, it is a testament to his diplomatic skills, and success, that he has managed to persevere in Washington, in and out of office for forty years.

As to the second charge by conservative critics, that Bolton is a neoconservative interventionist, the fact is that he is neither a neoconservative nor is he a knee jerk interventionist. Rather, Bolton supports the judicious use of American power in the world to advance U.S. national security and economic interests when the use of force is the best way to achieve those interests.

It is true that Bolton supported the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003. But it is also true that he opposed the nation-building strategy that stood at the root of America’s failure to achieve its aims there.

It is also true that like many of the neoconservatives, Bolton is a firm supporter of Israel. However, Bolton is actually far more supportive of Israel than the neoconservatives are. As a nationalist, he supports U.S. allies because he understands that the stronger America’s allies are, the better able they are to defend their interests. Since American allies – particularly Israel – share America’s interests, the more powerful they are, the more secure America’s interests are, and the less the U.S. needs to assert its power abroad.

Bolton supported — indeed, urged — Israel to destroy Iran’s nuclear installations during the Obama presidency. Rather than treating Israel as what Rice referred to patronizingly as America’s “special friend,” Bolton views Israel as America’s most powerful ally in the Middle East. He opposes Palestinian statehood and an Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank.

 

Bolton’s healthy skepticism for international agreements; his support for a foreign policy that prioritizes the advancement of American national interests over multilateral diplomacy; and his belief that Obama’s signature diplomatic achievement, the nuclear deal with Iran, is a disaster, all make him the senior diplomat most aligned with President Trump’s America First agenda in Washington.

The combination of Trump and Bolton no doubt puts fear in the hearts of America’s enemies, and heartens America’s allies. Given the hatred Bolton inspires in the Washington swamp, it took great courage for Trump to appoint him. America and its allies will be the primary beneficiaries of this bold move.

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Congressional Pork Barrel Spoilage system alive and well in Florida thanks to 1.3 trillion dollar spending bill

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And, not to knock Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) and the State of Florida. I am sure the other 49 State Senators can send out a similar message to their constituency.  Never mind  the entire nation is catapulting  to the inevitable sink hole where your dollar becomes worthless and you will find yourself unable to pay your home mortgage while standing in bread lines with a bushel basket full of worthless dollars.  G-d Forbid!

Jerome S. Kaufman

From:  Florida Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL)

A big win for Florida

Dear Friends,

Early Friday morning, the Senate passed a spending bill that is great news for Florida – and our country. From increasing funding to address the opioid crisis, to making sure we have the right equipment to track hurricanes, to protecting Florida’s citrus industry, this legislation will includes funding for a number of projects I’ve been fighting for here in the Senate:

$3.3 billion to fight the opioid epidemic and mental health crises. An estimated 2.6 million Americans suffer from opioid use disorder. In Florida alone, more than 5,200 people have died from an opioid-related event in 2016 – a 35 percent increase from 2015. I requested additional funding for treatment, prevention and research.

$67.47 million in total funding for citrus greening research and the Citrus Health Research Program. As citrus greening has hurt growers across Florida, I’ve advocated for increased funding to study and address the problem to help our citrus industry.

• $895 million for Kennedy Space Center to modernize launch facilities, more than doubling what the center received last year. I requested the increased funding to bolster work on launch and processing infrastructure needed for NASA’s initiative to explore deep space.

• $121 million for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to purchase a reliable backup for its aging hurricane hunter jet. I’ve been pushing for a replacement since 2015. The funding comes in the wake of several incidents over the last two years when the jet NOAA uses to gather hurricane measurements was grounded during the hurricane season.

• $76.5 million in total funding to protect and restore the Everglades. The U.S. Army Corps budget was also increased, allowing additional funding for Everglades restoration.

• $82 million to repair the Herbert Hoover Dike. U.S. Army Corps budget was also increased, allowing for additional funding for dike repairs.

• $279.6 million, a 14-percent increase, in funding to support Historical Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The four historically black colleges and universities in Florida – Florida A&M in Tallahassee, Florida Memorial University in Miami Gardens, Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach and Edward Waters College in Jacksonville – prepare over 16,000 students for careers in STEM, aviation, law, nursing and other fields.

• $250 million in federal funding for positive train control grants. Positive train control technology will help prevent deadly crashes on our railroads. It’s critically important for those railroads that carry passengers, like Sunrail and Tri-Rail. As the ranking member on the Senate Commerce Committee, I pressed for the funding to help passenger railroads meet a federal deadline to install the lifesaving technology.

• $100 million for research and development program for automated vehicles. The SunTrax facility at Florida Polytechnic University is a qualified proving ground and will have the opportunity to benefit from the program.

• Restored and increased funds to $35 million for democracy programs in Venezuela and Cuba. I requested Congress “redouble, not eliminate support for democracy and human rights” in Venezuela. The democracy programs support civil society organizations and promote human rights.

• $60 million for the Nonprofits Security Grant Program. The program helps certain non-profits harden their facilities against attack, such as organization like the Jewish Community Centers (JCCs) in Orlando and Miami and elsewhere. I requested this funding after JCCs across Florida received a series of telephone bomb threats.

• Increased funding for the Holocaust Survivor Assistance Program to $5 million. I requested $5 million in funding to provide long-term support and services for Holocaust survivors.

In addition to this critical spending, we also moved a little closer to turning the voices of these students who are demanding action on gun violence into policy. The spending package included several provisions I co-sponsored to address gun violence in Florida and across the country, including:

• Fix NICS Act. I cosponsored this bipartisan bill, which requires federal agencies and states to develop implementation plans to upload to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) all information prohibiting a person from purchasing a firearm, rewards states who comply with these plans through federal grant preferences, and reauthorizes and improves programs that help states share information on criminal records with NICS, among other things.

• STOP School Violence Act. I co-sponsored this bipartisan bill that would allow schools to access federal funds to invest in programs, training and technology to keep students safe.

• CDC Gun Violence Research. The spending package included language to clarify that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) can conduct research on gun violence. This bill is fantastic news for our state. And while these gun violence provisions are just steps, they are steps in the right direction and show just what we can do when we work together.

(And, who could possibly argue with the justness,  political correctness and legitimacy of all of the above?  Only one very major problem — WE ARE RAPIDLY RUNNING OUT OF SPENDING OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY.)

Jerome S. Kaufman

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Explaining the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA) Fiasco

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The surveillance state is here, and to stay

Redacted from article
By Wesley Pruden – The Washington Times
February 8, 2018

The administration of Barack Obama, eager to advance the interests of Hillary Clinton, who was to be the front for his otherwise constitutionally forbidden third term, sought court approval to spy on a suspected colluder with Russians, and in doing so advanced the surveillance state that will now spy on everybody.

Everything about FISA is shady, smarmy and suspicious to the limit. The Obama administration cut corners and trashed the ethics (do not laugh) of government lawyers to get necessary warrants to pursue Carter Page, a minor Trump campaign aide and the suspected colluder.

To do that, the lawyers for Mr. Obama’s government told the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court some imaginative things about Mr. Page, none of them good and some of them more than a little naughty. But what Mr. Obama’s lawyers didn’t tell the court was that their “facts” were extracted from a dossier of unverified rumors, hearsay, gossip and street talk, put together by a British undercover man whose word and reliability the FBI would not vouch for.

Nor were the judges told that an official of the Justice Department, one Bruce Ohr, had colluded privately with the author of the dossier — and that Mr. Ohr’s wife, Nellie, had worked on the dossier. The dossier was not great literature, but it apparently was enough to keep a family together.

Most revealing of all, the dossier was originally paid for by Hillary Clinton, eager to collect campaign dirt on Donald Trump, and the Democratic National Committee, which was doing everything it could to grease the nomination for Bubba’s first lady. Mr. Obama’s lawyers were working under the mushroom theory of courtroom connivance, keep the judges in the dark and under a blanket of bovine fertilizer. Judges usually don’t like that.

But it was all in a good cause. Donald Trump had to be destroyed, lest lightning strike and he become the president of the United States. Lie, fib, fudge and make it up, and when caught at it lie some more. Everybody expects politicians to lie. Denial is the unanimous reaction on the left to “the memo” that set out some of the particulars of the chicanery uncovered by congressional committees.

“The big memo was a bust,” wrote one hyperventilating pundit in flyover country, still in a sulk that Donald Trump was elected by the Electoral College, as the Constitution provides, and not by a popular vote. The memo accomplishes “little other than prompting the preposterous second-place president to declare preposterously that somehow, amid its utter irrelevance, the memo had vindicated him.”

But what we saw, Judge Andrew Napolitano, retired from the New Jersey judiciary, observes in The Washington Times, was “a new turn as politicians engaged in cherry-picking snippets from classified raw intelligence data that support their political cases, pro-Trump and anti-Trump.”

Politicians, good ones and bad ones, are eventually deleted from the passing parade, and this, too, will pass. (So far it has no name, but only if we’re lucky will it escape being called “something-gate”). But the damage done will not pass so easily. The surveillance state, once established, is likely to be with us forever.

The implications of “something-gate” are well over the heads of the big-time mainstream legacy media, so called. Barack Obama was once a professor of constitutional law, deeply distrustful of what he agreed was a secretive “deep state,” but once in the White House he, too, recognized the usefulness of a weaponized intelligence service and even the IRS, ready to go after pesky critics. The big-time mainstream legacy media is largely dedicated now to the restoration of how it used to be, and how it must be again.

Woodward and Bernstein are footnotes now to an ancient history. There are no hungry reporters in hot pursuit of a Nixon administration or rogues in the government of Ronald Reagan. The New York Times and The Washington Post, together with the great civil libertarians, are no longer demanding accountability in inconvenient places. They oppose the disclosure of embossing public documents. The president is an inviting target and bashing him is great fun.

The watchdogs have gone to sleep, lest they see something they don’t want anybody to talk about.

• Wesley Pruden is editor in chief emeritus of The Times.

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California now a “sanctuary state” thanks to Gov. Jerry Brown & liberal Democrats in Sacramento

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WHISTLEBLOWER MAGAZINE
February 2018

And… as a ‘SANCTUARY’ FOR ILLEGALS BECOMES BLACKS’ WORST NIGHTMARE’

Reveals state-wide war brewing over health care, education and other services

By Jesse Lee Peterson

The Golden State is home to an estimated 2.3 million illegal aliens. And police are no longer permitted to ask suspects about their immigration status or assist with federal immigration-enforcement activities.

 

Yes, California voters are dumb for voting in liberal Democrats who continue to pass laws that endanger citizens. For black Americans who might not understand this – you too will be impacted! Now that California has been designated a “sanctuary state,” illegal aliens, including MS-13, will flock to the state in droves and they’ll end up in the black community.

For the past 27 years, my nonprofit organization, BOND, has been trying to educate blacks on this issue with town hall forums, media, rallies, etc. Along with groups like FAIR, California Coalition for Immigration Reform and the late Terry Anderson, we’ve been warning the state and the nation of what was coming, but most blacks refused to listen.

We couldn’t get blacks to support a border wall or to vote against liberal Democrats who are selling them out for the Hispanic vote. Most blacks are so brainwashed by their godless black leaders, they’re willing to vote against their own self-interest.

They blindly follow corrupt Democrats like Barack Obama, Maxine Waters, Karen Bass, Kamala Harris, Mark Ridley-Thomas and others who use them. All Democrats have to do is accuse anyone who opposes illegal immigration of being “racist,” and that’s enough to put blacks in a hypnotic trance and make them vote for Democrats.

The illegal immigration issue is out of control. The Hispanic population is growing rapidly, and it’s flexing its political muscle. There’s a warfare brewing between black and Hispanic gangs in Los Angeles, and it’s just a matter of time before it explodes. As a result, decent blacks are fleeing California and moving down south.

Order Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson’s book, “The Antidote: Healing America from the Poison of Hate, Blame, and Victimhood.”

Illegal aliens are draining California taxpayers. According to Fox News, Los Angeles County taxpayers paid a whopping $1.3 billion in just two years for illegal-alien benefits and programs – nearly a quarter of the amount spent on the state’s needy population.

Over the past 60 years, the black community traded in values and principles for welfare and programs. As a result, most blacks rely on government assistance. Blacks are fighting with illegals in Los Angeles for health care, public education and other services.

I know many qualified blacks who’ve applied for all types of jobs in Los Angeles County and weren’t hired because they don’t speak Spanish; blacks are upset about this. If blacks stood up and demanded that their elected officials do something about this issue, the problem could be solved. But they’re so angry and preoccupied with blaming the white man, they can’t see that they’re voting for their own self-destruction.

The NAACP has completely sold out blacks. It supports amnesty, and it has allowed illegals to hitch their plight to the civil-rights struggle of blacks. The shameless NAACP is also pushing the insidious lie that increased immigration is helpful to the black community.

Members of the corrupt Congressional Black Caucus unanimously support amnesty for Hispanics and for the more than 3 million immigrants of African descent.

Except for a handful of black conservatives like myself, Sheriff David Clarke, Larry Elder, Walter Williams, Thomas Sowell and Peter Kirsanow, there aren’t any black voices boldly speaking out about the devastating impact illegal immigration is having on black Americans.

Democrats are giving out all kinds of taxpayer funded goodies to seduce Hispanics and addict them, just like they did to blacks. They’re brainwashing, spoiling and dumbing them down to use them for votes. There are some decent Hispanics who don’t agree with rewarding illegals, but they’re too afraid to speak out.

And now that California has legalized the sale of recreational marijuana, the state will attract more criminals and the worst kind of people. What a shame!

President Trump and Congress are deliberating the future of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. Trump has reiterated that he wants to work with Democrats to find a permanent legislative solution to allow those protected by DACA to stay in the country, but only if it comes with a long-promised border wall and major changes to the immigration system.
Blacks need an advocate on this issue, and they have a friend in President Trump. But if they don’t wake up and stand for what is right, they will be permanently replaced.

For blacks to free themselves from this nightmare, they must first turn back to God and love Him with all their soul and might. Second, they must abandon group thinking and the Democratic Party. If they do this, we can make America great again overnight.

(Jesse Lee Peterson – host of “The Fallen State” TV show on WND-TV – is the most courageous, outspoken critic of the “civil rights” establishment in America today. Raised without his father on a plantation near Tuskegee, Alabama, during the Jim Crow era, Peterson has lived a part of America’s history few have experienced.)

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Winston Spencer Churchill Ha Maccabee

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BY RABBI MEIR Y. SOLOVEICHIK

COMMENTARY, FEBRUARY, 2018

In 1969, Winston Churchill’s biographer Martin Gilbert interviewed Edward Lewis Spears, a longtime friend of Gilbert’s subject. “Even Winston had a fault,” Spears reflected to Gilbert. “He was too fond of Jews.” If, as one British wag put it, an anti-Semite is one who hates the Jews more than is strictly necessary,

Churchill was believed to admire the Jews more than elite British society deemed strictly necessary. With attention now being paid to Churchill’s legacy as portrayed in the film Darkest Hour, I thought it worth exploring the little-known role that Churchill’s fondness for the Jewish people played at a critical period in the history of Western civilization.

The film highlights three addresses delivered by Churchill upon becoming prime minister in the spring of 1940, with the Nazis bestriding most of Europe. Of the three, his two speeches before Parliament—the one that promised “blood, toil, tears, and sweat,” the other that “we shall fight on the beaches”—are more famous.

The most important disquisition, however, may have been the radio remarks delivered on May 19, as they were the first words spoken by Churchill to the British people as leader of His Majesty’s Government. Britain faced, he said, “the foulest and most soul-destroying tyranny which has ever darkened and stained the pages of history.”

The Nazis had thus far destroyed every adversary that they had faced, leaving in their wake a “group of shattered states and bludgeoned races: the Czechs, the Poles, the Norwegians, the Danes, the Dutch, the Belgians—upon all of whom the long night of barbarism will descend, unbroken even by a star of hope, unless we conquer, as conquer we must; as conquer we shall.”

Noting that he was speaking on a celebratory day in the Christian calendar, Churchill then concluded with an apparent scriptural citation—a rare rhetorical choice for him—as inspiration to his country at the most perilous moment in its history.

Today is Trinity Sunday. Centuries ago words were written to be a call and a spur to the faithful servants of Truth and Justice: “Arm yourselves, and be ye men of valour, and be in readiness for the conflict; for it is better for us to perish in battle than to look upon the outrage of our nation and our altar. As the Will of God is in Heaven, even so let it be.”

Thus ended Churchill’s first radio address as prime minister to the British people, which has come to be known as the “Be Ye Men of Valour” speech. That evening, Anthony Eden told Churchill: “You have never done anything as good or as great. Thank you, and thank God for you.” The scriptural conclusion was a stunning success, stiffening the British spine and capturing the English imagination. But where in the Bible is the verse with which Churchill concluded and for which his speech is named?

In fact, the citation is from a work of Jewish apocrypha—the first book of Maccabees, which describes the triumph of the Maccabees over the Seleucid Empire, leading to the holiday known as Chanukah. Churchill would have known it from the Apocrypha portion of the King James Bible. In the book’s third chapter, Judah Maccabee exhorts his troops prior to the recapture of Jerusalem:

And Judas said, Arm yourselves, and be valiant men, and see that ye be in readiness against the morning, that ye may fight with these nations, that are assembled together against us to destroy us and our sanctuary: For it is better for us to die in battle, than to behold the calamities of our people and our sanctuary. Nevertheless, as the will of God is in heaven, so let him do.

As Hillsdale College’s Richard Langworth has noted, Churchill altered the quotation, as “the writer in him could not resist an editorial improvement.” One edit that he made is particularly interesting. In paraphrasing Judah, Churchill spoke of the outrages against “our altar,” rather than “our sanctuary.” Here Churchill combined an understanding that Judah’s victory concluded with a rebuilding of the altar (the word “Chanukah” itself refers to the chanukat ha-mizbeach, the dedication of the sacrificial altar in the Temple).

Through Churchill’s rhetoric, England was transformed into an altar for which the English must be willing to sacrifice, and ultimately rededicated.
Even more fascinating is the choice of citation itself. Why would Churchill select this verse with which to conclude his first address as prime minister?

Like traditional Judaism, Churchill’s own Anglican Church did not include the book of Maccabees in its canon, and there are any number of biblical instances, from Moses to Joshua to David, of eloquent exhortations in war.

The answer possibly lies in the fact that the Chanukah story is one of the few instances of a biblical battle waged against overwhelming odds. It is a tale, as the Jewish liturgy puts it, of rabbim be-yad me’atim, of the many falling into the hands of the few.

As the film depicts, Churchill’s own cabinet contained those who, like Lord Halifax, were so frightened by the British plight that they urged negotiation and capitulation. Churchill’s choice of quotation from Maccabees is thus understood in the context of the verses earlier in the same chapter, where Judah’s own compatriots confess themselves daunted by their situation.
Who, when they saw the host coming to meet them, said unto Judas, How shall we be able, being so few, to fight against so great a multitude and so strong, seeing we are ready to faint with fasting all this day?

Unto whom Judas answered, It is no hard matter for many to be shut up in the hands of a few; and with the God of heaven it is all one, to deliver with a great multitude, or a small company: For the victory of battle standeth not in the multitude of an host; but strength cometh from heaven.

They come against us in much pride and iniquity to destroy us, and our wives and children, and to spoil us. But we fight for our lives and our laws. Wherefore the Lord himself will overthrow them before our face: and as for you, be ye not afraid of them.

In 1960, a retired Churchill met with David Ben-Gurion, another leader who had overseen a war in which the many fell into the hands of the few. Churchill gave Ben-Gurion an essay that he had composed in 1931 titled “Moses: The Leader of a People.” In it Churchill appears to describe his own journey during the decade to follow.

“Every prophet,” he wrote, “has to come from civilization, but every prophet has to go into the wilderness. He must have a strong impression of a complex society and all that it has to give, and then he must serve periods of isolation and meditation. This is the process by which psychic dynamite is made.”

It was in the wilderness, Churchill wrote, that Moses encountered a vision of a burning bush, through which God, from the midst of an ethereal fire, informed him that “there is nothing that man cannot do, if he will it with enough resolution.” Churchill composed these words in 1932; eight years later, he returned from the political wilderness, with “psychic dynamite” that helped save civilization.

Churchill, seeking a source of inspiration in England’s darkest hour, turned to the story behind the Jewish Festival of Lights. It is a fascinating footnote in the life of a man who wrote these words in 1920: “Some people like Jews and some do not, but no thoughtful man can doubt the fact that they are beyond all question the most formidable and the most remarkable race which has ever appeared in the world.”

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The Clintons Owe Monica an Apology

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It would show that the popular former president understands humility.

Monica Lewinsky in Cannes, southern France, June 25, 2015.

PHOTO: LIONEL CIRONNEAU/ASSOCIATED PRESS
By Abby Ellin

March 5, 2018

In a new essay for Vanity Fair, Monica Lewinsky writes that although her relationship with Bill Clinton was consensual, she now realizes it was a “gross abuse of power” on his part. She’s right. And it’s time he apologized.

Yes, Mr. Clinton included her in a 1998 speech in which he asked forgiveness from “my family, my friends, my staff, my cabinet, Monica Lewinsky and her family, and the American people.” But he never apologized for letting a young woman’s life crumble, for throwing her under the bus, for being a coward.

He should, even if it wouldn’t make up for the way she was portrayed as a tramp, a bimbo, “that woman,” or, in the words of Hillary Clinton, a “narcissistic Looney Tune.” Mr. Clinton was the grownup in the room—a room that also happened to be the Oval Office.

Whether she pursued him or he pursued her, he was the president of the United States.

Had it happened today, maybe Mr. Clinton would have resigned. Or maybe he would have done as David Letterman did when he admitted on national TV that he’d had affairs with staffers and apologized to his wife, family and employees. “And that is all I’m going to say about that,” he concluded. Mr. Letterman didn’t obfuscate, backpedal or claim to be “misunderstood.” He manned up, then dealt with a private matter privately. Today, no one associates Mr. Letterman with anything other than excessive facial hair.

Imagine what kind of message it would send if Mr. Clinton apologized today. It would show that a man—a powerful, brilliant man whom many Americans still revere—understands humility. It might even make other men acknowledge, and try to correct, their own shortcomings.

Mrs. Clinton could join in, too. She’s still standing by her man, and it has hurt her. “We have a man who is accused of sexual assault sitting in the Oval Office, don’t we?” she told radio host Rita Cosby, referring to Donald Trump. She’s right. But without acknowledging her own husband’s wrongful acts, her words are meaningless.

As a woman, a feminist and an American, I’d like to hear an apology. Forget politics; it’s about human decency and righting old wrongs. It’s about redemption, for the Clintons and Ms. Lewinsky. It’s about showing the current administration how adults behave.

“Forgiveness is a way of opening up the doors again and moving forward, whether it’s a personal life or a national life,” Mrs. Clinton once said. So is apology.
Ms. Ellin is author of “Duped,” forthcoming from Public Affairs in 2019.

If you want to bring tears to your eyes. Watch UN Ambassador Nikki R. Haley address the American Israel Public Affairs Comm. March 5, 2018

If you want to bring tears to your eyes, watch UN Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki R. Haley, address the American Israel Public Affairs Committee in Washington, DC, March 5, with 18,000+ Jews in attendance!

PS   Nikki Haley for US President 2024!

Please hold your contributions for a bit.  Thank you.

Jerome S. Kaufman

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DEATH THREAT FROM IRAN — Not to be ignored or minimized

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Former Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Commander threatens to nuke Israel – and why he’s for real.

By Kenneth R. Timmerman
Frontpage Magazine
February 26, 2018

Maj. General Mohsen Rezai founded Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps in the early days of the revolution, upon the personal orders of Ayatollah Khomeini.

While he relinquished control of the IRGC in 1997, he remains one of the regime’s most influential leaders. A “principalist,” who is considered a revolutionary purist, Rezai has occasionally shown a more pragmatic bent.
He regularly boasts of the Iranian regime’s military power, and issues threats to all who would challenge the regime that seem to get dismissed in the Western media.

Last week, when he vowed to “level Tel Aviv to the ground,” was no exception. He was speaking in response to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who warned at the Munich Security Conference last week that Israel would “act against Iran itself” if Iran continued to invade Israeli air space, as they did when they sent a drone into Israel from an air base in Syria.

And yet, outside of the Israeli media, only the Daily Mail paid much attention to Rezai’s threats. But make no mistake about it: General Rezai understands the cold calculus of nuclear deterrence, and he was not making an idle threat. His message was crystal clear: Iran considers itself to be a nuclear weapons-capable state.  And he speaks from direct, personal knowledge since he was himself in charge of Iran’s nuclear weapons program for over a decade.

I know this because his son defected to the United States at the age of 23 in 1999, and wound up staying with me for several months, learning English in my basement by watching Jackie Chan movies. Many of the stories he told me about his father I related in a 2005 book, Countdown to Crisis: the Coming Nuclear Showdown with Iran.

Here is just one of them, which explains why I am confident that General Rezai was not making an idle threat to Israel last week. It involves a January 1993 trip Rezai made to China and North Korea with a 50-man military delegation, as well as his then teenage son.

For nearly an entire week, the North Koreans escorted Rezai and his delegation to military bases all over the country. They split them into two groups. Rezai and the men who had already taken the tour plunged directly into negotiations. His deputy, Mohammad Baqr Zolqadr, the dark-skinned fanatic who had just come back from training Osama bin Laden’s terrorists in Sudan, led the second group, including his boss’s son.

Young Ahmad marveled when they were taken to a top secret airbase, carved out of the rock inside a mountain. As they entered, their North Korean hosts pointed out the thickness of the special blast doors, designed to withstand a direct nuclear hit.

Deep inside the mountain they came to a huge cavern, where two dozen aircraft were parked like ducks in a row, nestled into each other’s wings. In separate store rooms carved out of the rock, the North Koreans had stockpiled missiles, fuel, and all the necessary maintenance equipment.

They managed the entire complex from a modern control room, where flight officers surveyed the buried runway through a giant glass window, a bit like the control tower on an aircraft carrier. But most amazing of all was the underground runway, pitched at a steep upward slant. As the jets cycled up their engines, the jetwash was deflected by a blast wall and vented through a series of long tunnels to the surface to reduce the heat signature.

The jets hurtled upwards using a catapult, similar to an aircraft carrier. At the end of the runway, doors opened onto the sky. The jets shot out, burner cans lit, like a missile emerging from a launch tube buried halfway up the mountainside.

At one missile test range the elder Rezai visited, Iranian engineers were working side by side with the North Koreans, preparing telemetry equipment for a test. They were working to extend the range of the missile known in the West as the No-Dong…

The original specifications called for a Circular Error Probable (CEP) from between 1,500 to 4,000 meters, an unheard of margin of error in the West. This meant that just half of the missiles would fall within 1,500 to 4,000 meters of a target area. The key was making sure the new missile could carry a warhead large enough for the Chinese bomb design Iran is believed to have purchased from Dr. A.Q. Khan. Given the density of Israel’s population, it didn’t much matter where it fell. That missile, later known as the Shahab-3, was designed to be able to hit Israel.
Toward the end of the week-long visit, the elder Rezai was summoned to meet the Great Leader himself, the grandfather of “little rocket man,” Kim Jong Il. Rezai met with Kim Il Sung alone. No aides, no note-takers, not even his own translator were allowed in the room in the Great Leader’s palace. Just the two of them, and Kim’s personal interpreter.

The aging Kim was terminally ill, although Rezai didn’t know that at the time. He still appeared robust, jovial, and keenly aware of his visitor. Look how much we have accomplished together, he said, as they reviewed work on the new joint missile project. Neither man had any doubt as to the missile’s purpose as a nuclear delivery vehicle. And that’s when Rezai told Kim about the bombs.

The stories about Iran’s attempt to purchase nuclear warheads from Kazakhstan and other Central Asian Republics were true, he said. Rafsanjani had sent buying teams a little all over the place. But there had been problems. To avoid detection, the weapons had been disassembled and transported piece by piece in separate trucks.

They had put a non-professional in charge of the operation, and the results were predictable. When the bombs arrived in Tehran in late 1991 and early 1992, key parts were missing. Iran could hardly go to the Russians and ask them for assistance, since Yeltsin’s intelligence people had raised a public stink about the missing bombs. Iran needed Kim’s help to get those weapons operational. The aging North Korean leader agreed immediately…

On the plane back to Tehran, Rezai was ecstatic. His lifelong dream of making Iran an independent nuclear power capable of defending itself against aggression—even by a superpower!—was about to come true. As he mulled over his meeting with Kim in the executive cabin of the Boeing 707, [his son] asked him how they would ever manage to ship atomic weapons from North Korea to Iran.

We don’t need to, Rezai said. We have all the parts but one. And now North Korea has agreed to supply us what we are missing….
Ahmad told me he assumed the missing bomb part was the fissile material core. But Clinton administration officials I shared this anecdote with at the time said they believed the North Koreans did not have enough fissile material or the inclination to share it, even with Iran.

Ahmad Rezai’s defection to the United States placed General Rezai in a precarious position. The young Rezai’s information proved to be so valuable to the U.S. intelligence community that they fast-tracked his application for U.S. citizenship and awarded him a passport and a new identity.
He died in Dubai on November 2011 at the age of 35, as I related in these pages. My own investigation on the ground led me to believe he was murdered by a Russian hitman, hired by Tehran. General Rezai is a cold-blooded killer, but he is also a survivor. He remains a top Godfather of the Islamic regime.

It would be unwise to sweep away as idle threats comments such as those he made last week. He knows Iran is a nuclear-weapons capable state, because he was present at the creation. With the Iran nuclear deal safely guaranteeing that Iran’s nuclear programs will not be challenged, General Rezai and other regime leaders can now brandish them as a deterrent.
These are dangerous times, indeed.
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Don’t Count Bibi Out

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 By Bret Stephens

The New York Times
Feb. 23, 2018

If you follow the news from Israel, you might surmise that Benjamin Netanyahu’s days as prime minister are numbered. The police recommend that he be charged on multiple counts of bribery, fraud and breach of trust. Fresh charges may yet be brought in additional investigations. A former top aide to Netanyahu agreed this week to serve as a witness against him. Press reports suggest a man clinging to power.

 

Don’t be so sure. If an election were held tomorrow, Bibi — as Netanyahu is universally known in Israel — and his Likud party would likely win, according to recent polls. Roughly half of Israelis think the prime minister should quit, but that’s down from 60 percent in December.

 

Netanyahu has no intention of resigning, even if the attorney general chooses to indict him. The Likud rank-and-file remain loyal to their leader. His coalition partners may detest him, but for now they see greater political advantage in a wounded prime minister than in a fresh one. Besides, Bibi has been, for Israelis, a pretty good prime minister. Some indicators:

Economy: Since Netanyahu returned to power in 2009, the economy has grown by nearly 30 percent in constant dollars — nearly twice the growth rate of Germany or the United States. Some 3.6 million tourists visited Israel in 2017, a record for the Jewish state. On Monday, Israel announced a $15 billion dollar deal to export natural gas to Egypt from its huge offshore fields.

 

Diplomacy: Netanyahu’s personal ties to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi are exceptionally close, as they are with Japan’s Shinzo Abe. Israel’s relations with African countries and the Arab world are the best they’ve been in decades; reaction in Riyadh and Cairo to the Trump administration’s decision to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem amounted to a shrug. Netanyahu’s 2015 speech to Congress opposing the Iran deal, billed as an affront to the Obama administration, turned out to be an inspiration for Israel’s neighbors. And Netanyahu’s arguments against the deal now prevail in the current White House.

Security: In 2002, at the height of the second intifada, Israelis suffered more than 400 terrorism fatalities. In 2017 there were fewer than two dozen. Two wars in and around Gaza, both initiated by Hamas, were devastating for Palestinians but resulted in relatively few Israeli casualties. The Israeli Air Force lost an F-16 after coming under heavy Syrian antiaircraft fire, but that seems to have been a fluke. For the most part, Israel has been able to strike Syrian, Iranian and Hezbollah targets at will.

And then there are the Palestinians. The central complaint of Netanyahu’s critics is that he has failed to make good on the promise of his 2009 speech at Bar-Ilan University, where he claimed to accept the principle of a Palestinian state. Subsidiary charges include his refusal to halt settlement construction or give former Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad a sufficient political boost.

It should go without saying that a Palestinian state is a terrific idea in principle — assuming, that is, that it resembles the United Arab Emirates. But Israelis have no reason to believe that it will look like anything except the way Gaza does today: militant, despotic, desperate and aggressive. Netanyahu’s foreign critics are demanding that he replicate on a large scale what has failed catastrophically on a smaller scale. It’s an absurd to ask.

It’s also strange that the same people who insist that Israel help create a Palestinian state in order to remain a democracy seem so indifferent to the views of that democracy. Israel’s political left was not destroyed by Netanyahu. It was obliterated one Palestinian suicide bombing, rocket salvo, tunnel attack and rejected statehood offer at a time. Bibi’s long tenure of office is the consequence, not the cause, of this.

Specifically, it is the consequence of Israel’s internalization of the two great lessons of the past 30 years. First, that separation from the Palestinians is essential — in the long term. Second, that peace with the Palestinians is impossible — in the short term. The result is a policy that amounts to a type of indefinite holding pattern, with Israel circling a runway it knows it cannot yet land on even as it fears running out of gas.

The risks here are obvious. But it’s hard to imagine any other sort of approach, which is why any successor to Netanyahu will have to pursue essentially identical policies — policies whose chief art will consist in fending off false promises of salvation.

There’s a long Jewish history of this. For all of his flaws, few have done it as well as Bibi, which is why he has endured, and will probably continue to do so. ☐

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