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January 2013



From Sunday’s 60 Minutes joint-interview of President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton:

Steve Krofts: When we come back, the president and Secretary Clinton discuss the disaster in Benghazi and the state of her health.

I didn’t watch this live, but if I had I would have spent the commercial break parsing the duality of the question. Why “disaster in Benghazi” and “state of her health” together? Mind you, the interview has been going on for sometime at this point, and Clinton’s health would seem to be something better addressed in the opening niceties. But no. Will “disaster” be cushioned by “health”?

See how it worked out:

Steve Krofts: Hillary Clinton’s final days as secretary of state included one of her most difficult. On Wednesday, she spent more than five hours being grilled on Capitol Hill for the security failures in Benghazi that led to the deaths of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans; the biggest diplomatic disaster of this administration. The Accountability Review led by Admiral Mike Mullen and Ambassador Thomas Pickering found, among many failures, that Stevens’ repeated requests for better security never made it to Clinton’s desk. And representatives and senators pressed her on whether the administration covered up the nature of the terrorist attack.

[Secretary Clinton: We have four dead Americans, was it because of a protest or was it because of guys going out for a walk and deciding they’ll go kill some Americans. What difference– at this point, what difference does it make? It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from happening again, senator.]

Steve Kroft: I want to talk about the hearings this week. You had a very long day. Also, how is your health?

Once again, Steve Kroft enters the annals of journalist shilling for the Left. Remember, Kroft is the same “journalist” who sat on Obama’s own admission that he, Obama, did not call Benghazi a terrorist attack in the Rose Garden on September 12 until two days before the election. Even at that point, Kroft’s scoop appeared like mist in the morn, unobtrusively posted sans fanfare on the CBS website seven or eight weeks after the fact — and after the presidential campaign.

FLASHBACK: KROFT: Mr. President, this morning [September 12] you went out of your way to avoid the use of the word terrorism in connection with the Libya Attack.

OBAMA: Right.

KROFT: Do you believe that this was a terrorism attack?

OBAMA: Well it’s too early to tell exactly how this came about, what group was involved, but obviously it was an attack on Americans. And we are going to be working with the Libyan government to make sure that we bring these folks to justice, one way or the other.

Now, Kroft has done it again, cushioning Hill’s potentially bad news as plushly as possible. You had a very long day and how is your health? Health, not “long day,” becomes the emphasis of the question.

Sure enough:

Secretary Clinton: Oh, it’s great. It’s great. Now, you know, I still have some lingering effects from falling on my head and having the blood clot. But, you know, the doctors tell me that that will all recede. And so thankfully I’m, you know, looking forward to being at full speed.

Steve Kroft: Right, I noticed your glasses are–

Secretary Clinton: Yeah, I have some lingering effects from the concussion that are decreasing and will disappear. But I have a lot of sympathy now when I pick up the paper and read about an athlete or one of our soldiers whose had traumatic brain injury. I’d never had anything like that in my family. And so, you know, I’m very conscious of how lucky I was.

Steve Kroft: You said during the hearings, I mean, you’ve accepted responsibility. You’ve accepted the very critical findings of Admiral Mullen and Ambassador Pickering.

See, there’s nothing even to talk about!

As the New York Times put it, you accepted responsibility, but not blame.

Do I detect a pivot?

Do you feel guilty in any way, in– at a personal level?

The woman is secretary of state. This is an affair of state. But far be it for a reporter to treat the matter with any sense of history let alone veracity. Before she can even answer, Kroft further files down any sharp edges that might still be left on his line of questioning.

Do you blame yourself that you didn’t know or that you should have known?

Life vest of personal agony tossed (and, after all, she’s not a well woman), life vest of “personal agony” seized:

Secretary Clinton: Well, Steve, obviously, I deeply regret what happened, as I’ve said many times. I knew Chris Stevens. I sent him there originally. It was a great personal loss to lose him and three other brave Americans. But I also have looked back and tried to figure out what we could do so that nobody, insofar is possible, would be in this position again. And as the Accountability Review Board pointed out, we did fix responsibility appropriately. And we’re taking steps to implement that. But we also live in a dangerous world. And, you know, the people I’m proud to serve and work with in our diplomatic and development personnel ranks, they know it’s a dangerous and risky world. We just have to do everything we can to try to make it as secure as possible for them.

This counts for journalism and diplomacy at its best.

Obama wants some, too.

President Obama: I think, you know, one of the things that humbles you as president, I’m sure Hillary feels the same way as secretary of state, is that you realize that all you can do every single day is to figure out a direction, make sure that you are working as hard as you can to put people in place where they can succeed, ask the right questions, shape the right strategy. But it’s going to be a team that both succeeds and fails. And it’s a process of constant improvement, because the world is big and it is chaotic. You know, I remember Bob Gates, you know, first thing he said to me, I think maybe first week or two that I was there and we were meeting in the Oval Office and he, obviously, been through seven presidents or something. And he says, “Mr. President, one thing I can guarantee you is that at this moment, somewhere, somehow, somebody in the federal government is screwing up.” And, you know you’re– and so part of what you’re trying to do is to constantly improve systems and accountability and transparency to minimize those mistakes and ensure success. It is a dangerous world. And that’s part of the reason why we have to continue to get better.

Hard to know what is more staggering: the banality or the mendacity. And Kroft, gentleman of the Fourth Estate, has No Follow-Up.

He moves on.

Steve Kroft: The biggest criticism of this team in the U.S. foreign policy from your political opposition has been what they say is an abdication of the United States on the world stage, sort of a reluctance to become involved in another entanglement, an unwillingness or what seems/appears to be an unwillingness to gauge big issues. Syria, for example.

Who is he talking about? The Weekly Standard e-board? Certainly not Sen. Rand Paul, at this point showing potential to lead such political opposition. In his questioning of Clinton’s replacement, Sen. John Kerry, Paul showed a clear opposition to continued US interventionism.

Back to 60 Puff:

President Obama: Yeah, well–

Steve Kroft: I mean, that–

President Obama: Well, Muammar Qaddafi probably does not agree with that assessment, or at least if he was around, he wouldn’t agree with that assessment.

“Mission Accomplished,” Mr. President?

Obviously, you know, we helped to put together and lay the groundwork for liberating Libya. You know, when it comes to Egypt, I think, had it not been for the leadership we showed, you might have seen a different outcome there.

You mean without your “leadership” there might be MB “apes and pigs” government and violence and rape on the Cairo streets?

But also understanding that we do nobody a service when we leap before we look. Where we, you know, take on things without having thought through all the consequences of it. And Syria’s a classic example of where our involvement, we want to make sure that not only does it enhance U.S. security, but also that it is doing right by the people of Syria and neighbors like Israel that are going to be profoundly affected by it. And so it’s true sometimes that we don’t just shoot from the hip.

(The president’s teleprompter was at the repair shop.)

Secretary Clinton: We live not only in a dangerous, but an incredibly complicated world right now with many different forces at work, both state-based and non-state, technology, and communications. And, you know, I’m older than the president. I don’t want to surprise anybody by saying that.

President Obama: But not by much.

Secretary Clinton: But, you know, I remember, you know, some of the speeches of Eisenhower as a young girl, you know?

Let’s see. Was that before or after Hillary, b. 1947, was named, as she has claimed, for Sir Edmund Hillary (who climbed Mt. Everest in 1953)?

You’ve got to be careful. You have to be thoughtful. You can’t rush in, especially now, where it’s more complex than it’s been in decades.

I wonder why Clinton is invoking Eisenhower? Nothing she or her husband ever do is without calculation. Is she thinking of styling herself as the “New Ike” — liberal socially but supposedly security-minded — in 2016?

So yes, are there what we call wicked problems like Syria, which is the one you named? Absolutely. And we are on the side of American values. We’re on the side of freedom. We’re on the side of the aspirations of all people, to have a better life, have the opportunities that we are fortunate to have here.

Makes my teeth hurt.

But it’s not always easy to perceive exactly what must be done in order to get to that outcome. So you know, I certainly am grateful for the president’s steady hand and hard questions and thoughtful analysis as to what we should and shouldn’t do.

President Obama: You know, there are transitions and transformations taking place all around the world. We are not going to be able to control every aspect of every transition and transformation. Sometimes they’re going to go sideways. Sometimes, you know, there’ll be unintended consequences. And our job is to, number one, look after America’s security and national interest.

What are America’s security and national interest to Obama besides words?

But number two, find where are those opportunities where our intervention, our engagement can really make a difference? And to be opportunistic about that. And that’s something that I think Hillary has done consistently.

Nice of him to refer to the Clinton crest: Semper opportunistic.

I think the team at the State Department’s done consistently. And that’s what I intend to continue to do over the next four years.

Steve Kroft: Thank you very much.

For what?







http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/holocaust-remembrance-day-commemorated-with-hate/2013/01/28/0/ January 27, the date in 1945 on which Auschwitz was liberated by the Allies, is the day designated by the United Nations to officially commemorate the Shoah. But there are some who cannot permit a mention of the Holocaust without insisting, sometimes in lurid pictures, that Israel is a modern day version of the […]


Women sexually assaulted during anniversary of Egypt’s uprising
London: At least 25 women were sexually assaulted during clashes in Tahrir Square amid ongoing civil unrest in Egypt, local women’s rights campaigners have said.
In a typical attack, crowds of men quickly surround isolated women, groping them and attempting to remove their clothes. According to the Guardian, the campaigners said that some women were stripped naked and one was even raped.

Since Thursday, hundreds of thousands of Egyptians have taken to the streets in 12 of the country’s 21 provinces to protest against President Mohamed Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood, and police brutality – two years after the start of the revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak, the report said.
Last night Morsi declared a 30-day state of emergency and curfew in the three Suez canal provinces – Port Said, Ismailiya and Suez – which are hit hardest by the latest wave of political violence.
According to the report, the president vowed in a televised address on Sunday last night that he would not hesitate to take more action to stem the latest eruption of violence across much of the country.

But at the same time, he sought to reassure Egyptians that his latest moves would not plunge the country back into authoritarianism.More than 40 people have died and more than 500 have been injured in clashes in cities including Alexandra, Suez and Mahalla in the past four days.

For four days in Cairo, police armed with teargas have clashed with stone-throwing protesters in and around the crowded Tahrir Square, where the sexual assaults are reported to have taken place.
This week, a woman raped near Tahrir Square in November published a harrowing online account of her experience.

According to a 2008 report by the Egyptian Centre for Women”s Rights, 83 percent of Egyptian women have experienced some form of sexual harassment, and the problem is exacerbated by a failure to prosecute the perpetrators, the report added.


Boehner says the president is out to destroy the Republican Party. But can Obama do it before he does?


Making sense of endless streams of ugly nonsense.

While John McCain was playing kissy face with John Kerry in Kerry’s confirmation hearing, Dianne Feinstein was pushing gun control, Obama was planning immigration legislation, and Leon Panetta was lifting the ban on women serving in combat. There was so much SGO in Obama’s full court oppress last week, we need to take some time and sort it all out.

(For those just joining us, “SGO” is an acronym for “s*** going on,” a comprehensively useful term coined by former SEAL Al Clark.)

If John Kerry were Barry Obama, he’d spend the next four years blaming his predecessor for the sorry mess the world is in that he’s inheriting from Hillary Clinton. But after Hillary’s bravura performance in last week’s Benghazi hearing, Kerry should ask her for a tutoring session. Clinton, claiming responsibility for the Benghazi disaster, then denied knowledge of or involvement in any aspect of the attack, saying that someone else had knowledge of and responsibility for the long list of errors that ended with four dead Americans. It was the best performance since her best pupil claimed he “didn’t have sexual relations with that woman, Ms. Lewinsky.”

Kerry will also find the double Islamic play combo — from Afghanistan to Libya to Mali — somewhat difficult to deal with. Kerry said that he wanted to focus on global warming so he’ll try to ignore the effects of Obama’s ill-advised intervention in Libya which has so far resulted in terrorists being armed all across northern Africa with arms flowing from Libya’s arms caches. Vichy John Kerry may again find common cause with the French intervention in Mali, another comprehensively bad idea. He and Chuckie Hagel will get along just fine, giving gifts to our Islamic enemies such as the twenty F-16s we’re giving to Egypt’s president Muslim Brotherhoodlum Mohammed Morsi.

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.) was brave enough to ask Hillary about the abject lies she, Obama, and UN Ambassador Rice spread by insisting for weeks that the attack on the Benghazi consulate was a spontaneous demonstration against an obscure anti-Islamic video. But Hillary was prepared with righteous indignation and even tears. She shouted back at him, “What difference at this point does it make?”

None whatever, except that another chance was lost to hold Team Obama responsible for its manifest errors. But, as usual, Johnson and the rest of the Republican senators were less tough and resolute than Clinton. Part of their irresolution may reflect the fact that they came to the hearing fresh from their party’s annual“retreat” in Williamsburg, Va. Subsequent to the retreat, Speaker Boehner’s statement that Obama was trying to annihilate the Republican Party resulted in the RNC’s decision to decamp from his D.C. headquarters to permanent positions in Lord Cornwallis’s former entrenchments in Yorktown, Virginia. The RNC is rumored to be asking the French government for the architectural drawings for the Maginot Line.

Meanwhile, Beyoncé apparently lip-synched the national anthem at Obama’s inauguration, to the dismay of the Marine Band. Later in the week, while announcing an appointment, a housefly buzzed persistently around the president’s head apparently detecting food content in Obama’s words.

The White House flies were apparently dealt with before Obama’s interview aired last night, side-by-side with Hillary, to praise her performance as secretary of state. The only fly buzzing around was Joey Biden, kept outside the room, who may have lost his shot at the 2016 presidential nomination with Obama’s praise of Clinton.

Late in the week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit threw out Obama’s “recess” appointments to the National Labor Relations Board because they were made when the Senate wasn’t in recess. The court’s action invalidates about 300 NLRB rulings over the past year as well as rulings by the Consumer Finance Protection Board which is chaired by another Obama “recess” appointee, Rich Cordray. This will rein in Obama’s appointments because he — and future presidents — can’t decide for themselves when the Senate is in session or not. (Just for laughs, constitutional law expert Obama might want to re-read Article 1, Section 5 of the Constitution which says that the House and Senate make their own rules and procedures, which means they decide when they’re in session or not.)

The courts will be busy sorting out what the NLRB and CFPB did while the illegal appointees ruled the day. In the meantime, companies that suffered from the rulings by illegal appointees would be well advised to ignore them.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Cal.) led her gun controllers to the podium to push her new version of the “assault weapons” ban. Her bill, as I pointed out a few weeks ago, is probably unconstitutional as Justice Scalia’s opinion says in the Supreme Court’s D.C. v. Heller decision.

DIANA WEST: Black Flags over “Arab Spring”

http://www.dianawest.net/Home/tabid/36/EntryId/2392/Black-Flags-over-Arab-Spring.aspx Libya Shield — a security provider to USA in Benghazi — and the AQ flag of jihad. As Hillary Cinton testified last week: The United States has to be “effective in partnering with the non-jihadists, whether they fly a black flag or any other color flag.” –At Hillary Clinton’s House “Benghazi” hearing last week, […]

American Terrorist Gets 35 Years in Prison….Helped Plan Mumbai Massacre In 2008


An American who helped plan a terror attack that killed more than 160 people, including six Americans, has been sentenced to 35 years in federal prison.

David Headley, an American citizen of half-Pakistani descent, was convicted of conducting scouting missions that helped 10 men from Pakistan’s Lashkar-e-Taiba terror group armed with grenades and automatic rifles mount a multi-day assault in Mumbai, India in November 2008. The terrorists attacked a train station, a luxury hotel and a Jewish center, killing 164 people and wounding hundreds more.

“Mr. Headley is a terrorist,” said Judge Harry Leinenweber in imposing the sentence in a Chicago courtroom Thursday. “I don’t have any faith in Mr. Headly when he says he’s a changed person and believes in the American way of life.”

Headley faced life imprisonment for his role but in a plea deal prosecutors agreed to seek a lesser sentence because of Headley’s cooperation with their investigation. The government also agreed not to extradite him to India.



Except for rockets from Gaza—which, meanwhile, have stopped since Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense in November—you haven’t been hearing much about Palestinian terrorism. But it’s not for lack of trying.

Israel’s Shin Bet (domestic security agency) has released its figures for 2012. It says it thwarted 100 “serious” terror attacks over the year, a third of them planned kidnappings, four of them attempted suicide bombings. The Shin Bet also arrested 2,300 terror suspects in 2012, leading to 2,170 indictments.

For the first time in four decades, no Israelis were killed in terror attacks in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) in 2012. But the number of attacks there rose sharply, from 320 in 2011 to 578 in 2012. That included a steep, 68% rise in Molotov cocktail attacks, which are intended to burn victims to death.

These are big numbers—100 attempted serious attacks, over 2,000 suspects arrested, 578 attacks in one year in the West Bank. Considering that perhaps two million (the figure is disputed) Palestinians live in the West Bank, it would justify calling it a terror entity. As for Gaza, it numbers about 1.5 million Palestinians and fired 2,327 rockets into Israel during the year, finally necessitating Pillar of Defense.

Meanwhile, as Evelyn Gordon details, the Palestinian Authority is in dire financial straits. When PA president Mahmoud Abbas went to the UN General Assembly last November to seek—and obtain—recognition for the PA as a nonmember observer state, he was warned of consequences by both Israel and the U.S., since his move was a direct flouting of Israeli-Palestinian agreements—signed under U.S. auspices—requiring issues to be settled solely through negotiations.

Two months later the PA, says Gordon, “faces the worst financial crisis of its crisis-filled history.” Israel has been withholding about $100 million a month in tax revenues it collects for the PA. Salam Fayyad, the PA prime minister, calls this “piracy,” but actually Israel is using the funds to pay off the PA’s enormous debt to the Israel Electric Corporation.


http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/ There have been suggestions floating around that some of the bigger donors should buy a newspaper, a television network or a women’s magazine to counter the media’s grip. There was a time when a powerful media outlet could be bought or created by conservative owners and function and wield influence over national policy. Time […]


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/24/chiune-sugihara-japanese–jews-holocaust_n_2528666.html?icid=maing-grid10%7Chtmlws-main-bb%7Cdl22%7Csec1_lnk2%26pLid%3D262198 But fewer know about Chiune Sugihara, the Japanese diplomat who disobeyed his government’s orders and issued visas that allowed 6,000 Jews to escape from Nazi-occupied territories via Japan. On Sunday, as Holocaust survivors and descendants of survivors observe International Holocaust Remembrance Day, a growing and widespread community of Jews — linked by their gratitude […]