On Thanksgiving – The West under attack as US and Israel man the front trenches

The West Fights Back

http://israel-commentary.org/?p=5304

BY WILLIAM KRISTOL
Weekly Standard December 3, 2012

There are some facts so obvious that only a liberal could deny them. One of them is that, from Benghazi to Be’er Sheva, the West is under attack.

By the West I mean those nations — wherever on the globe they are — that hold aloft and carry the torch of liberal civilization, that seek to build on the achievements of modern liberalism and the older traditions of Athens and Jerusalem.

The United States stands at the head of the West, having had leadership thrust upon us several decades ago — at about the same time the state of Israel came into existence after the collapse of Western civilization in Europe. The West was saved, primarily by Britain and the United States, and its revival after the war was somehow exemplified by the founding of the state of Israel, which, as the philosopher Leo Strauss put it in 1956, “is a Western country, which educates its many immigrants from the East in the ways of the West: Israel is the only country which as a country is an outpost of the West in the East.”

To be an outpost is to be under the threat of attack. To be a leader is to be subject to attack. And so Israel and the United States bear the brunt of the attacks on Western civilization.

George W. Bush was ridiculed by the left, and criticized by some on the right, for speaking of the Global War on Terror. The left hated the notion of a global war of any sort, and the right disliked the imprecision of “terror.” But the term “war on terror” has always struck me as good enough for government work. For what the West stands against is terror — whether the terror of modern secular totalitarianism or the terror of an older, and now revitalized, religious fanaticism.

From the Great Terrors of Stalin and Hitler to the attacks on New York and Tel Aviv, and on Madrid, Bali, and Mumbai, terrorists of all stripes know who their enemies are. They attack across the world and kill Jews, Christians, and Muslims alike — but they grasp that the centers of resistance, the nations that stand most squarely in their path, are the United States and Israel.

And so these two very different nations — Christian and Jewish, large and small, new world and old (though the new world nation is older than its newly reborn old world counterpart) — find themselves allied. More than allied: They find themselves joined at the hip in a brotherhood that is more than a diplomatic or political or military alliance. Everyone senses that the ties are deeper than those of mere allies. Israelis know that if the United States fails, so shall Israel. Americans sense, in the words of Eric Hoffer, “as it goes with Israel so will it go with all of us. Should Israel perish the holocaust will be upon us.”

I write this on the eve of Thanksgiving, the most Old Testament, the most Hebraic, of our national holidays. On Thanksgiving we don’t celebrate our rights or our achievements, or honor our soldiers or great men. Rather, we thank the Almighty for our blessings here in America. We might also thank Him for restoring the homeland of the Jewish people, as Israelis might thank Him for the existence, side by side with Israel, of a loyal and steadfast America.

Obama is outclassed and outsmarted by retiring Gen. Petraeus

The Washington Times Editorial

EDITORIAL: An old soldier who wont fade away

Obama is outclassed and outsmarted by retiring Gen. Petraeus

Gen. David H. Petraeus closed his phenomenal 37-year Army career this week with a joint review at Fort Myer in Arlington . Service members from every branch were present, and flags of all 50 states fluttered in the breeze. A substantial crowd had come to hear the general’s farewell address. Many were classmates from the West Point Class of 1974, smartly attired but enthusiastic and occasionally whooping like they were cadets. Others were people with whom he had served over his storied career, whom he recognized from the dais during his speech. The morning was sunny and clear, and the general was his usual affable, ebullient self.

In his remarks, Gen. Petraeus recalled the days when he entered the military, when the Vietnam War was winding down and the armed services were being pared down to the “hollow forces” of the 1970s. “The Army I joined as a second lieutenant had suffered enormously,” he said. “In the wake of our involvement in Vietnam , our Army and much of our military were grappling with a host of very serious challenges.” The senior leaders who first wore the uniform in those dark days were not discouraged. They began their careers with a sense of mission. “I know I speak for many when I say that we came away from that period vowing to never let our forces get to such a point ever again.” Through his efforts, and those of countless other visionaries in and out of uniform, the hollow forces were transformed once again into the finest fighting force in the world. Adm. Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, presided over the ceremony with William J. Lynn, deputy secretary of defense. Notably absent were Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta, whose former position as CIA director is Gen. Petraeus’ next assignment, and President Obama. Their non-appearance did not sit well with some. “Obama should have been here,” a warrior who served under Gen. Petraeus told The Washington Times. “And he should have invited [former President George W.] Bush. The general saved their bacon. Twice.

“Everyone has forgotten that in 2007 we as a nation had said, ‘OK, we are going to lose Iraq .’ And President Bush said, ‘Well what if we win?’ Petraeus rode into town and assembled an extraordinary team. His personal drive, his charisma, his optimism, his can-do spirit, all of that is what gave us hope that we could in fact turn Iraq around,” our source explained. “And by September of ’07, the progress had been dramatic enough that it became common knowledge to the American people that things were turning around in Iraq . Eight months earlier, a lot of people, including Obama, wanted to tuck tail and have another Vietnam .”

That’s not all. “Here is the guy who saved our reputation as a nation. Seriously, who’s missing this? And then he went to [Central Command] and was doing great things. And Obama asked him to take a functional demotion and go back to Afghanistan and save our bacon again,” we were told. “To leave his family, to step down from a regional command, to take on that burden. And he said yes, and he did it. Petraeus was the right guy at the right time, he answered the call, and now he’s being yanked out before we’re ready, just like the troops are being yanked out before Afghanistan is ready.”

So what’s the reason for the White House about-face? “They are sending him to the CIA to keep him quiet during the 2012 election. It shows how small and scared they are. He is an honorable man, he has never expressed political ambition. But they saw him as a threat. He is an independent thinker, the finest military mind of his generation,” our source posits. “What he suffers from is that he is more excellent than almost anyone he meets, to include the president. The troops love him. Strong people surround themselves with the most excellent people they can find, even those brighter and more capable than themselves. Weak people don’t.”

There is a shameful indignity in how this hero was treated. “The president couldn’t find the time in his schedule, nor could the [defense secretary] find the time to look him in the eye and say thank you in person,” this warrior told The Washington Times. “It’s one thing to say ‘we support the troops’ and trot out your first lady to do that, but this is where it counts. It would have been an appropriate gesture to come here to recognize the professional and personal sacrifice of this extraordinary man. It would have been the dignified thing to do.”

The hero remained above it all. The cannons boomed and the crowd cheered and Gen. Petraeus stood smiling in the sun.

Copyright 2011 The Washington Times, LLC.

 

 

 

 

 


2002 – Newly elected Senator Barack Obama given $126,349 payola from Fannie Mae

http://israel-commentary.org/?p=2168

Wifey enthusiastically applauds (I don’t blame her)

See video below:

2008 – Barney Frank and Chuck Schumer defend and promote FNMA-FMAC

See second video below:

How did Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac get into this awful position where it is bleeding taxpayer dollars and is a huge factor in our financial demise. We seem to have completely forgotten the outspoken supporters of this fiasco. Fortunately, in this modern era of intense media coverage, we have videos at that time of exactly what happened in the US Congress – the primary culprit.

In the meantime, the financial carnage continues with no end in sight and no assumption of guilt by the Congressional perpetrators. They remain in power with no end in sight for their reign, either. Incidentally – prima facie evidence of why we desperately need term limits. How about two 2 year terms in the House, one 6 year term in the Senate?

And just now, the news item below appeared in the newspaper:  $112.6 Billion Fannie Mae loss charged to the American taxpayer.

Fannie Mae seeks additional billions  Nov 13, 2011

7.8 Billion aid for the third quarter July-Sept 2011. It lost 7.6 billion. Low mortgages rates reduced profits and declining home prices caused more defaults on loans it had guaranteed. Fannie has received 112.6 billion so far!

Then to really add salt to the wide-open wound:

Fannie, Freddie executives score $100 million payday bonus!!

Redacted from article by Chris Isidore @CNNMoney

November 15, 2011

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac received the biggest federal bailout of the financial crisis. And nearly $100 million of those tax dollars went to lucrative pay packages for top executives, filings show.

The top five executives at Fannie Mae received $33.3 million in 2009 and 2010, while the top five at Freddie Mac received $28.1 million.  And each company has set pay targets of as much as $17 million for its top managers for 2011.

That’s a total of $95.4 million, which will essentially be coming from taxpayers, who have been keeping the mortgage finance giants alive with regular quarterly cash infusions since the Federal Home Finance Agency (FHFA) took control of the companies in September 2008.

Video – Newly elected Senator Barack Obama:

http://youtu.be/usvG-s_Ssb0

Video – Congressmen Barney Frank, Senator Chas. Schumer, Alan Greenspan, Pres. GW Bush

(Compiled by Jerome S. Kaufman)