The United Nations played the Holocaust game last week so it could play another lethal game this week. The ruse consists of making a big deal about the gas chambers for Jews back then, while stoking the fires of anti-Semitism burning right now.
On January 31, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon penned a New York Times op-ed to say at one and the same time that “people will always resist occupation” and “nothing excuses terrorism.” That follows a statement he gave to the Security Council on January 26, in which he said “Palestinian frustration is growing” and “it is human nature to react to occupation, which often serves as an incubator of hate and extremism.”
Reaction to the claim that it is human nature to stab pregnant women and mothers in front of their children – as Palestinians had done the week before – has been unanimous across the Israeli political spectrum. In the words of Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu on January 26: “The secretary-general’s remarks give a tailwind to terrorism.”
Nevertheless, the spokesman of the secretary-general doubled down in a press briefing on January 27 with these words: “Absolutely nothing justifies terrorism. . . . At the same time, if we want to see an end to this violence . . . we must address the root causes, the underlying frustrations.”
In short, for the United Nations, nothing justifies terrorism except Palestinian frustration.
It is hardly a secret that the UN agenda is to find reasons for treating the Jewish state differently – notwithstanding the UN Charter’s promise of equality for nations large and small. The settlements bandwagon is one of many.
Politico reports that Speaker Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) has given the go-ahead to House Oversight Committee chairman Jason Chaffetz (R., Utah) to investigate the lack of executive branch compliance with the recordkeeping and records-production provisions of the Federal Records Act (FRA) and Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The investigation would include — though purportedly not center on — violations caused by former secretary of state Hillary Clinton’s maintenance of a private e-mail system that resulted in massive misplacement (and likely destruction) of government records, as well as the State Department’s willful flouting of FOIA production requirements.
The Chaffetz gambit could seriously interfere with the FBI’s ongoing investigation of the Clinton homebrew-server arrangement, which appears to have resulted in serious violations of laws protecting classified information. From a legal standpoint, that would make the congressional probe pointlessly problematic. Politically, it would be an astonishing unforced error by Republican leadership.
Ryan and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy are apparently telling Chaffetz all the right things about the need to proceed cautiously and stay out of the FBI’s way. But what they should be telling him is, “No, now is not the time.”
No one should know this better than Representative McCarthy. He would have Ryan’s job today if a monumental gaffe had not doomed his speakership bid: his brag that the House Benghazi Committee investigation had succeeded in damaging Mrs. Clinton’s presidential campaign. This gifted the Clinton campaign with the powerful claim that the Benghazi investigation is nothing more than a partisan witch hunt — a talking-point Mrs. Clinton repeats, and the press dutifully echoes, whenever damaging evidence of her derelictions arises.
The Iowa caucuses served their usual function in winnowing down the field of candidates to a more manageable number, and a smaller number of realistic possibilities for the nomination. On the Democratic side, barring an indictment for her private server issues with classified information sent and received, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton remains the overwhelming favorite to be nominated. It is not, however, a sign of strength that she could only win half the vote in Iowa against Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, a 74-year-old curmudgeonly socialist, who was not even a Democratic Party member until 2015. Clinton appears to lack pretty much all the political skills of her husband and is running a campaign reminiscent of 2008 when she campaigned as if she were entitled to the nomination, and greatly underestimated the threat of Barack Obama. More than half of Americans do not trust her, and she has provided plenty of ammunition to the doubters.
The Republican race has settled into a contest between three leading contenders — Texas Senator Ted Cruz, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, businessman/reality TV star Donald Trump and a few pretenders — former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, Ohio Governor John Kasich, businesswoman Carly Fiorina and former pediatric neurosurgeon Ben Carson. Christie and Kasich have been living in New Hampshire the past few months, much as Ted Cruz did in Iowa, but without gaining the same traction. A Bush super PAC has been blasting Rubio for months, with some damage done to Rubio but no noticeable gain for Bush. The results in Iowa — a win for Cruz, with Trump second and Rubio a closer-than-expected third, has shaken up both the state and national polls. A new national poll has Trump at 25%, and Cruz and Rubio at 21% each.
In a week, Cruz has stayed where he was, despite the Iowa victory, and Rubio has doubled his share, almost all at Trump’s expense. Trump’s campaign has been largely based on the fact that he is a winner, will make America win again and he is winning in all the polls. When the first actual votes did not deliver a win for Trump, a good bit of the bubble was burst.
Since 2010, members of the anti-Israel left have denounced any mention of the Jewish state’s open-minded attitude toward homosexuals as “pinkwashing”: i.e., a cover for Israel’s alleged crimes against the Palestinians. To make sense of this bizarre accusation, Jamie Palmer cites George Orwell’s analysis of the leftist intellectuals of his own day whose blind devotion to Communism led them to defend Joseph Stalin:
“Last week, the neologism ‘pinkwashing’ made an unwelcome return to news headlines. On Friday January 22, protesters bearing placards denouncing Israel disrupted an event organized by the National LGBTQ Task Force as part of its Creating Change conference in Chicago. The protesters, it seems, were upset by the involvement of an Israeli LGBT organisation called Jerusalem Open House and a Jewish LGBT organization called A Wider Bridge that, the JTA reported, “seeks to build ties between gay communities in North America and Israel”.
Over at the Washington Post’s Volokh Conspiracy blog, law professor David Bernstein was flabbergasted. “Many participants,” he wrote, “describe the demonstration as both anti-Semitic and physically threatening (and the hotel felt obliged to call the police), but we can limit ourselves to the sheer craziness of radical LGBT activists shouting “free Palestine” and anti-Israel slogans to shut down an event involving an Israeli LGBT organization when Israel is a gay rights haven and the Palestinian territories, to say the least, are not.”
This was, as I hope to explain, to miss the point about what really irritates these people. And while I share Bernstein’s dismay, he needn’t have been shocked by their apparent perversity. It is only the most recent manifestation of a peculiar malady that has disproportionately afflicted the Left for decades.
On Wednesday the U.S. media interrupted its saturation coverage of the presidential primaries to report on President Barack Obama’s visit to a mosque in Maryland. The visit was Obama’s first public one to a mosque in the US since entering the White House seven years ago. The mosque Obama chose to visit demonstrated once again that his views of radical Islam are deeply problematic.
Obama visited the Islamic Society of Baltimore, a mosque with longstanding ties to the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas. During Operation Protective Edge, the leaders of the mosque accused Israel of genocide and demanded that the administration end US support for the Jewish state.
According to The Daily Caller, the mosque’s former imam Mohammad Adam el-Sheikh was active in the Islamic American Relief Agency, a charity deemed a terror group in 2004 after the US Treasury Department determined it had transferred funds to Osama bin Laden, Hamas, al-Qaida and other terrorist groups.
El-Sheikh left the Baltimore mosque to take over the Dar el-Hijra mosque in northern Virginia. He replaced Anwar al-Awlaki as imam after Awlaki moved to Yemen in 2003. In Yemen Awlaki rose to become a senior al-Qaida commander.
Awlaki radicalized many American jihadists both through direct contact and online. He radicalized US Army major Nidal Malik Hasan, and inspired him to carry out the 2009 massacre of 13 US soldiers and civilians at Fort Hood in Texas. Awlaki was killed by a US drone strike in 2011.
“The central mitzvah or commandment for our era is the mitzvah of Tikkun Olam. It is the defining mission of Jews to strive for the repair of the world by making society more just, fair, egalitarian, and sensitive. Judaism demands that we repair the world by striving for social justice. It is the mission of Jews in the Divine Plan for the universe to repair the world by repairing man, by improving and advancing mankind.”
The above paragraph is a fair representation of what has become the defining raison d’etre of Judaism as conveyed by non-Orthodox liberal Jewish organizations and synagogues in America. It is not a direct citation from any of them, but is an accurate paraphrase of what has become the canon of non-Orthodox Jewish liberalism in our time.
It is the “modernized” and contemporary “reinterpretation” of “Jewish ethics” as defined and inculcated by much of the Reform and Conservative movements. It is also the “theology” of Jewish radical leftist groups operating at the fringes of the Jewish community, including the “Renewal/ALEPH” movement, the “Eco-Judaism” groups, the “Tikkun community” of people and groups that are satellites to the magazine by that same name published by tikkun-activist Michael Lerner, and what remains of the “Reconstructionists.” Lerner, it should be added, discovers “repair of the world” even in LSD consumption.
What are we to make of “Tikkun Olam” proclamations?
Hillary Clinton has tried to portray herself as a steadfast friend of Israel. “I have stood with Israel my entire career,” she wrote in an article appearing last November in The Forward. “As president, I will continue this fight.” She promised that she would “invite the Israeli prime minister to the White House in my first month in office.”
Hillary Clinton’s steadfast support for the disastrous nuclear deal with Iran calls into question her stated “personal commitment” to “fighting for Israel.” Peace and security in the region are not enhanced by a loophole ridden deal with a fanatical Islamist regime sworn to Israel’s destruction and to exporting its self-described “Islamic revolution” around the world.
Perhaps even more disturbing is what we have learned so far from the disclosure of Hillary Clinton’s private e-mail system, which she recklessly used while serving as Secretary of State. Certain e-mails from her closest advisers that have been made public reveal the barrage of anti-Israel counsel she was receiving.
“These emails seem to demonstrate that a huge segment of her close advisers and confidantes were attacking Israel, condemning Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and strategizing how to force Israel to withdraw from Judea and Samaria at all costs,” the Jerusalem Post concluded after reviewing the e-mails.
The future of the Democratic Party was two angry old leftists screaming at each other for two hours to decide who hates capitalism more.
With the MSNBC and the Democratic Party’s logos on a red background, the stage was set for a redder than red debate. Red was everywhere, reflected in the thick glasses of Bernie Sanders and in the garish red lipstick around Hillary Clinton’s orifice of lies, and in their clamorous rants about Wall Street and the evils of capitalism that could have come from a back alley Communist pamphleteer in the 50s.
Bernie Sanders promised to end “a rigged economy” with Socialism, which is the very definition of a rigged economy. Both candidates showed their Socialist bona fides by rattling off the names of the corporations they hated the most. Bernie Sanders cheered normalizing relations with Cuba, ridiculing the idea that being Communist is objectionable. But he did express some concerns about the nuclear weapons being held by his fellow Socialists in the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea.
If you’re a white male looking for a job, your search just got harder.
Claiming women aren’t getting paid enough, President Obama wants to make it easier to accuse employers of gender discrimination and hit them with class-action lawsuits. A new regulation proposed on Friday will require all employers with 100 or more workers to report how much their workforce is paid, broken down by race and gender.
The rule, slated to go into effect in September 2017, will cause headaches for employers and anyone – man or woman – who works hard and expects to get ahead based on merit. The winners are federal bean counters, class-action lawyers and the Democratic Party, which is playing up the gender “wage gap” as usual during this election year.
Never mind that the gap is largely fiction. Or that Uncle Sam’s social engineers are foisting their cookie-cutter vision of a politically correct workplace on employers, denying them the freedom to hire and promote based on merit.
Race and gender discrimination is already against the law. As it should be. But seniority, education and merit often explain salary differences.
Thank God that’s over. You don’t have to be an Amtrak conductor to want to punch the next guy who says, “There are three tickets out of Iowa.” In the end, Ted Cruz won eight delegates and Donald Trump seven. Which doesn’t sound so bad for Trump. Except that Marco Rubio also won seven delegates. Had the caucus been held 24 hours later, Rubementum might have pushed Trump to third place.
There’s no point pretending it wasn’t a setback for the billionaire party-crasher. Who knows why it happened? Perhaps he should have taken his own advice and shot a guy on Fifth Avenue: That’s gotta be worth a couple of points in Polk County. For over six months, each supposedly fatal misstep – from McCain to Muslims – only made him stronger. Now the first actual votes of this interminable process have made him weaker. For a candidate running on the platform that he’s a winner and the other guys are losers, the aura of invincibility depended on the perception of invincibility. So it’s not helpful to let five thousand hayseeds shuck Trump Tower like a corncob. Doing without consultants, doing without ads, doing without Fox News, doing without National Review, doing without debates …great, great, love it. But doing without voters is a trickier proposition. This week the Trump campaign sent my 15-year-old kid, who lives in New Hampshire, a reminder to make sure he caucuses in Iowa.
Rubio did the usual caucus-night thing. He came third so he hailed himself as the most stunning victor since Wellington at Waterloo and then segued into the stump-speech bollocks about being the son of a bartender and promising a new American century. Ted Cruz followed with a victory speech that lasted most of the new American century. It was the kind of ruthless Canadian triumphalism older Americans haven’t seen since the War of 1812, which, like Cruz’s speech, went on into the following year. If he wins again next Tuesday, let’s hope he cuts to the chase and burns down the White House.