http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/ I’M GOING TO DISNEY WORLD It used to be that you were supposed to win a Super Bowl before celebrating with a trip to Disney World as a public figure, but Obama can’t stop doing his touchdown dances even as the country sinks faster. The similarities between Obama and Captain Francesco Schettino are a [...]
Advance of the Zealots The Growing Influence of the Ultra-Orthodox in Israel By Juliane von Mittelstaedt
Veiled women, radical rabbis and gender segregation: Israel is facing a rise in the influence of ultra-Orthodox Jews. Their efforts to impose a strictly conservative worldview have led to growing tensions with the country’s secular society. A resolution to the conflict is vital for Israel’s future.
AND THIS IS THE PICTURE FOR THIS COLUMN:
Photo Gallery: Battle for the Soul of Israel
Outside is the Judean Wilderness, the Dead Sea shimmers in the distance. Naomi Machfud is sitting inside the self-built house, dreaming about making the world disappear. She wants to cover up her face with a veil, she says, her mouth, her nose and her eyes. A black veil, without even a vision slit, one that swallows every glance and submerges the world in darkness. The veil is the pinnacle of zniut, or modesty, the closest a person can get to God. But, she says with a sigh, “unfortunately I’m not that far yet.”
But Machfud, a 30-year-old woman with six children, has already created an insulating layer of material between herself and the outside world. She is wearing a wool robe, an apron, a blouse, three floor-length corduroy skirts, a black skirt and trousers. She has a piece of black wool material wrapped loosely around her head. Underneath it is a tight, black veil, and underneath that is a pale pink veil. Not a single hair is visible. She is wearing a pair of earrings, but she takes them off when she leaves the house.
Machfud is a Jewish woman married to a Jewish man. They live in a settlement in the West Bank, but she dresses as if she lived in Afghanistan. In Israel, the veiled women are referred to as the “Taliban,” while they refer to themselves as women of the shawl. Machfud claims that there are thousands of women like her, but it is more likely that they number in the hundreds. They are usually seen in Jerusalem’s ultra-orthodox Me’ah She’arim neighborhood, black, shapeless figures, holding the hands of their daughters, who look like miniature versions of their mothers.
One could call these women crazy. Or one could see them as the product of a religious community that is becoming more and more extremist.
Willard Mitt Romney these days could not be more explicit about abandoning President Obama’s carbon dioxide restrictions.
“Irresponsibly,” Romney wrote in an August 28 op-ed for the Foster’s Daily Democrat in New Hampshire, “the EPA declared carbon dioxide, the same carbon dioxide that humans exhale, to be a ‘pollutant’ that poses risks to human health.” He also observed: “Congress had the good sense not to compound our economic challenges by imposing cap-and-trade’s extraordinary costs on the American people.”
Romney’s website offers this carbon-friendly promise: “Mitt Romney will eliminate the regulations promulgated in pursuit of the Obama administration’s costly and ineffective anti-carbon agenda.”
Well — surprise, surprise! Unlike this conservative cantata, Romney sang a totally different tune as Massachusetts’s liberal-Republican governor.
Abe Greenwald of Commentary magazine tweets:
Is there any chance that Mark Steyn won’t use the Italian captain fleeing the sinking ship as the lead metaphor in a column on EU collapse?
Oh, dear. You’ve got to get up early in the morning to beat me to civilizational-collapse metaphors. Been there, done that. See page 185 of my most recent book, where I contrast the orderly, dignified, and moving behavior of those on the Titanic (the ship, not the mendacious Hollywood blockbuster) with that manifested in more recent disasters. There was no orderly evacuation from the Costa Concordia, just chaos punctuated by individual acts of courage from, for example, an Hungarian violinist in the orchestra and a ship’s entertainer in a Spiderman costume, both of whom helped children to safety, the former paying with his life.
The miserable Captain Schettino, by contrast, is presently under house arrest, charged with manslaughter and abandoning ship. His explanation is that, when the vessel listed suddenly, he fell into a lifeboat and was unable to climb out. Seriously. Could happen to anyone, slippery decks and all that. Next thing you know, he was safe on shore, leaving his passengers all at sea. On the other hand, the audio of him being ordered by Coast Guard officers to return to his ship and refusing to do so is not helpful to this version of events.
Clenched On Assad’s Side, Supplying Him With Weapons
Posted on January 19, 2012
Iran supplying weapons to Syria crackdown: US officials: The United States believes Iran is supplying munitions to aid Syria’s bloody protest crackdown in an initiative spearheaded by Tehran’s revolutionary guard supremo, according to senior US officials. Qasem Soleimani, head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps elite Quds force, was in…
Clenched Against The EU For Being A “US Client”
Posted on January 19, 2012
Iran cautions EU on acting as US client: Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast describes the European Union (EU) as a major rival of the US, cautioning the bloc against the consequences of acting as a Washington client. The US seeks to beat out its rival, Mehmanparast told reporters during…
Clenched And Pouring Billions Into Anti-US Latin American Alliances
Posted on January 19, 2012
Iran seeking to expand influence in Latin America: Iran is quietly seeking to expand its ties with Latin America in what U.S. officials and regional experts say is an effort to circumvent economic sanctions and gain access to much-needed markets and raw materials. The new diplomatic offensive, which comes amid…
Clenched Confidently Thanks To Obama’s “Pathetically Weak” Response To Provocations – Elliott Abrams
Posted on January 19, 2012
Iran’s Obligations, and Ours: President Obama’s reaction to the looting of the Embassy is pathetically weak. He said today that “for rioters, essentially, to be able to overrun the embassy and set it on fire is an indication that the Iranian government is not taking its international obligations seriously.” Not…
Clenched And Openly Mocking Obama With Offers Of A Toy Drone
Posted on January 19, 2012
Iran: State radio says Iranian company will give US a toy model of downed American drone: State radio says an Iranian company is sending the United States a model of the American surveillance drone captured by the Islamic Republic. Tuesday’s report said the company will send the miniature of the…
Clenched Against The Imprisoned Christians They Attacked Over Christmas
Posted on January 18, 2012
Concern over condition of four detainees arrested in AOG church of Ahwaz : Following an attack on the Assemblies of God Church of Ahwaz which resulted in the arrest of a number of Christians and their children, concerns are growing over the conditions of four of these detainees. According to…
Pleading the Fifth: Gunwalker Witness Refuses to Testify Posted By Bob Owens
Patrick J. Cunningham, chief of the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Arizona, is invoking his Fifth Amendment rights and declining to testify about Operation Fast and Furious in front of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
Fast and Furious is one of ten suspect “gunwalking” operations carried out by the Department of Justice — this operation armed the Sinaloa drug cartel with more than 2,000 weapons. Those firearms have been blamed in the deaths of at least 300 Mexican civilians, and two of those firearms were recovered at the scene of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry’s murder in Peck Canyon, AZ.
Cunningham’s attorney Tobin Romero suggests his client is being scapegoated:
“Department of Justice officials have reported to the Committee that my client relayed inaccurate information to the Department upon which it relied in preparing its initial response to Congress. If, as you claim, Department officials have blamed my client, they have blamed him unfairly.”
Contact: Helen Freedman, Executive Director
Today marks the day seventy years ago, Jan. 20, 1942, when the Wannsee Conference in Berlin, Germany resulted in the “final solution of the Jewish question,” – the genocide of six million Jews.
Lawrence Kadish writes in today’s Jan. 20, 2012 NY Post article, Planning genocide in plain sight, “Let us contemplate how a disbelieving world can stand idly by as evil regimes coolly harness their bureaucracies to methodically achieve horrendous goals.” He concludes that, “History consistently reminds us that indifference in the face of an implacable enemy invariably leads to disaster. Further, more often than not, our enemies tell us exactly what they mean to do before they do it. Acting on their warning requires our collective insight, personal courage and national will.”
Sadly, today, we are watching the Obama regime demonstrate its total failure to act on warnings from implacable enemies, and to divert Americans from heeding these warnings, and from using their collective will to prevent the disasters that are looming before us.
Newt Gingrich’s ardent admiration for Franklin Delano Roosevelt owes more to the latter’s unflinching wartime leadership than his welfare-state policy prescriptions. This week, though, the former Speaker is also undoubtedly in accord with FDR’s aphorism, “I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made.” To his great credit, Newt has made an enemy of CAIR.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, that is. The nation’s best known cheerleader for radical Islam — or, as Fox News compliantly puts it, “the largest Muslim civil liberties group in the United States” — has issued a blistering press release that labels Gingrich “one of the nation’s worst promoters of anti-Muslim bigotry.” The occasion for this outburst is the imminent Republican primary in South Carolina.
Asked at a campaign appearance whether he’d ever consider endorsing a Muslim for president, Gingrich sensibly answered that he would not rule it out — “it would depend on whether [the hypothetical Muslim candidate] would commit in public to give up sharia.” Naturally, the usual suspects are in full fury, with CAIR the loudest among them. They’ve trotted out the rote response, dutifully echoed by Fox, that sharia, Islam’s legal code, is simply a set of spiritual guidelines — one that, in CAIR’s portrayal, “teaches marital fidelity, generous charity, and a thirst for knowledge.”
The ideal of an ‘American way of life’ is fading as the working class falls further away from institutions like marriage and religion and the upper class becomes more isolated.
Charles Murray on what’s cleaving America, and why.
America is coming apart. For most of our nation’s history, whatever the inequality in wealth between the richest and poorest citizens, we maintained a cultural equality known nowhere else in the world—for whites, anyway. “The more opulent citizens take great care not to stand aloof from the people,” wrote Alexis de Tocqueville, the great chronicler of American democracy, in the 1830s. “On the contrary, they constantly keep on easy terms with the lower classes: They listen to them, they speak to them every day.”
Americans love to see themselves this way. But there’s a problem: It’s not true anymore, and it has been progressively less true since the 1960s.
People are starting to notice the great divide. The tea party sees the aloofness in a political elite that thinks it knows best and orders the rest of America to fall in line. The Occupy movement sees it in an economic elite that lives in mansions and flies on private jets. Each is right about an aspect of the problem, but that problem is more pervasive than either political or economic inequality. What we now face is a problem of cultural inequality.