Displaying posts published in

January 2017


TO: President-elect Donald Trump
Secretary of Defense (nominee) Gen. James Mattis
National Security Advisor (designee) Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn
CC: Director of Central Intelligence (nominee) Cong. Mike Pompeo
Director of National Intelligence (nominee) Sen. Dan Coates
SUBJECT: Restoring America’s Defenses

Americans pay little attention to the war in which we are engaged for several reasons, first among which is that only about one percent of America fights, lives and dies in it. The war was brought to our homes, cities and streets by the 9/11 attacks, but you already understand that it began long before. It began with the 1979 Tehran hostage crisis and took many lives in the 1983 Beirut barracks bombing. The war was only later declared in Osama bin Laden’s 1996 fatwa against America.

Though Congress authorized military action against al-Qaeda and other 9/11 terrorist participants in those attacks, we have never declared war against them or the nations that sponsor them.

Some of you understand that the principal lesson of Vietnam is that if you don’t fight a war in a manner intended to win it decisively you will lose it inevitably. That is why we are losing the war being waged against us by the terrorist networks and the nations that support them.

We were deflected from victory by President Bush’s nation-building strategy which gave the enemy control of the pace and direction of the war. Our forces have been further hobbled by the politically correct means in which we have fought the war.

The war against Islamic terrorists and terrorist powers is not the only conflict in which we are engaged. Cold wars are going on with Russia, China and Iran (which, of course, is also the world’s principal sponsor of terrorist networks). Americans aren’t thinking about those wars either. The media, the Democrats, and the Republican establishment all share responsibility for that fact.

It’s your collective job to win these wars and to deter or defeat the other threats. To do so will require you to do at least three things simultaneously and which you should begin immediately: (1) derive a national military strategy and budget to win these conflicts from an intensive analysis of intelligence on our enemies’ intentions and capabilities; (2) conduct the kind of intense ideological war that President Bush shied away from and Mr. Obama surrendered preemptively; and (3) act on the “personnel is policy” lesson we learned during the Reagan era.

Each will require months or years to accomplish. But every one of these tasks must be done if we are going to restore our nation’s security.

Even some die-hard Democrats will admit that rebuilding our military and intelligence capabilities is necessary. But how?

We really don’t know how many or what types of ships, aircraft, satellites and people we need. The Quadrennial Defense Review, or QDR, is supposed to be based on the analysis and required to be the foundation of our national defense strategy as well as the defense budget. But the QDR has become a bloated bureaucratic exercise diverted from facts by politics. The 2012 QDR was used by the Obama administration to justify defense cuts that had already been decided in disregard of actual requirements.

Sydney M. Williams Thought of the Day “Aleppo”

There is, perhaps, no better metaphor to describe the failure of the West in terms of a Middle East foreign policy than the tragedy that is Aleppo, its consequence for the people of Syria, and the refuge crisis it unleashed on Jordan, Turkey and Europe. It opened the door for Russia, emboldened Iran and further divided and already divided Middle East between Sunnis led by Saudi Arabia and Shiites by Iran.

The bombing ceased in mid-December, but atrocities continued as Bashar al-Assad’s forces swept through former rebel strongholds in the eastern part of Aleppo. The battle for the city began a month before President Obama proclaimed on August 20, 2012: “…that a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized.” Thirteen hundred tons of chemicals were subsequently removed, but not before Syrian helicopters launched at least two attacks using Chlorine gas, a chemical first used as a weapon by the German army in the First World War during the Second Battle of Ypres. We allowed that “red line” to become a sea of blood.

Syria’s civil war masked the arrival of ISIS. Distinguishing between rebels who wanted out from the oppression of Bashar al-Assad’s dictatorial control and ISIS fighters whose aim is a despotic caliphate is difficult. That confusion aids ISIS. The year 2011 gave rise to the “Arab Spring.” Democratic-leaning forces (or, rather, different totalitarian forces) toppled the heads of Libya, Yemen, Tunisia and Egypt that spring. In March of that year, peaceful protests began in Syria. President al-Assad responded by imprisoning thousands and killing hundreds of demonstrators. Nevertheless, by July military defectors had formed the Free Syrian Army, whose aim was to overthrow the Syrian government. Civil war had come to Syria.

Aleppo is an ancient city, located in northwest Syria near the Turkish border. Before the First World War, it was the capital of Aleppo Province, which then bordered the Mediterranean. Prior to the current civil war, it was Syria’s largest city, with 2.3 million people (more than 10% of Syria’s pre-war population), and it was the country’s commercial hub. It is one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world, dating back thousands of years. Excavations at Tell as-Sawda show the area was occupied 3000 years before the birth of Christ. The city was a strategic trading center between Mesopotamia (Iraq) and the Mediterranean, which lies 75 miles to the west. The Province was the western terminus of the Silk Road, which passed through central Asia and Mesopotamia, on its way to the Mediterranean. With the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869, trade was diverted to the sea and Aleppo began a long decline in terms of its commercial significance.

Cut to the (Russian) Chase by Diana West

“Russian hacking” is the Left/Never-Trumpers’ explanation for Donald Trump’s election.

In their furrowed-brow-telling, they have recently discovered something called “Russian interference” and “Russian influence.” Don’t ask where so many of them have been all of our lives, because they’ve spent about the past century telling us there was no such thing.

That was then. Today, they insist that this newfound “Russian interference” and “Russian influence” secretly drove nearly 63 million American deplorables to reach for that GOP lever again and again to vote for Donald Trump, not Hillary Clinton.

Let me squeeze in a little historical context. The late, great Sen. Joseph McCarthy himself was not wont to make such sweeping, conspiratorial charges without offering well-documented evidence, as we might see in his remarkable peroration on the still strange and perplexing career of George C. Marshall (pdf here; get over the Birch imprint; this is a reissue of the original 1952 Devin-Adair book publication).

Back to postmodern times.

Russia exerted this influence and interference, anonymous “officials” say — also political appointees James Clapper (he who prevented a mandatory damage assessment regarding national security breaches related to the Hillary Clinton server!), and alleged Muslim convert John Brennan (he who voted Communist before entering the CIA!) — by its alleged hacking of the email accounts of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta and the DNC, and subsequent alleged passing of these tens of thousands of emails to Wikileaks. That would be Julian Assange’s “radical transparency group,” as the Washington Post calls the phenomenal, Internet-based publisher of government documents, which, hosannas to the gods, now performs a watchdog-role by default that most media, including the Post, have rejected, making themselves noxious and obsolete.

It is hard to imagine Jeff Bezos’ sheet today publishing that massive, pre-hacking-era document “theft,” the Pentagon Papers. Fie! That would be “stealing,” according to our brave, new, uniparty-state-submissive stenographers. Better for all good media to ensure that government “secret” documents never, ever get to those of us who just elect and employ the government.

Thus, due to Russia — and not due to the globe-spanning criminality and corruption (and the open borders, forked-tongue Alinskyism and co-dependend-sex-crimes) of Hillary Clinton; and not due to one bit of Donald Trump’s revolutionary America First political program — Trump won the presidency. Ergo, Trump = Putin puppet. That makes the Clinton crime syndicate, its degenerate Podestas, the Left, Never-Trumpers such Amnesty McCain (and that bizarre pop-up candidate, Evan McMullin) the Second Coming of … Joe McCarthy? (Now, just a minute, stop, we don’t mean to suggest anything like that, witch-hunt, witch-hunt, Red Scare, glug, glug….)

Piers Morgan Sorry, Meryl but that hypocritical anti-Trump rant was easily the worst performance of your career (apart from that time you gave a child rapist a standing ovation)

Oh, Meryl.

Not you, too?

Just when I thought we’d exhausted the reservoir of Trump-hating luvvies, up pops the biggest star in Hollywood to join the bandwagon and stick one more stiletto-heeled boot into the President-elect ten days before his inauguration.

Let me make one thing clear before I continue: I love Meryl Streep.

She’s the greatest actress in history (and not, as Trump disingenuously tweeted today, ‘one of the most overrated in Hollywood’!). She’s also, and I speak from personal experience, a delightful woman – incredibly smart, warm, funny and decent.

In fact, there’s no better role model for any budding actor, or finer example of true feminist power at its very best.

So when she speaks, the world listens.

Last night, Streep received a Lifetime Achievement award at the Golden Globes, and chose the moment to launch a very personal attack on Donald Trump.

She began by saying that Hollywood, foreigners and the press are ‘the most vilified segments of American society right now’.

At which point the cameras panned out to hundreds of the richest, most privileged people in American society sitting in the audience in their $10,000 tuxedos and $20,000 dresses, loudly cheering this acknowledgement of their dreadful victimhood.

She then said that if all the ‘outsiders and foreigners’ were kicked out of Hollywood, ‘you’ll have nothing to watch but football and mixed martial arts, which are not the arts.’


I haven’t heard such elitist snobbery since Hillary Clinton branded Trump supporters ‘a basket of deplorables’.

For your information, Ms Streep, tens of millions of ordinary Americans love football and the MMA and would be quite happy watching their favourite sports at the expense of the next Woody Allen film.

Her real target, though, was Trump. She’d come to take him down, and that is exactly what she proceeded to do.

‘There were many powerful performances this year that did breathtaking, compassionate work,’ she said. ‘But there was one performance that stunned me. It sank it hooks in my heart, not because it was good – there’s nothing good about it. But it was effective and it did its job. It was that moment when the person asking to sit in the most respected seat in our country imitated a disabled reporter. Someone he outranked in privilege and power and the capacity to fight back.’

Meryl’s bottom lip began to tremble.

‘It kind of broke my heart when I saw it,’ she cried, ‘and I still can’t get it out of my head. This instinct to humiliate when it’s modelled by someone in the public platform, by someone powerful, filters down into everybody’s life because it kind of gives permission for other people to do the same thing.’


Really, Meryl?

For starters, the incident to which she referred didn’t happen last year, it happened in 2015. There’s even been another Golden Globes in between then and now, at which it was never mentioned.

Second, Trump has always furiously denied – and has again today on Twitter – he was mocking the reporter’s disability and a Conservative website produced video evidence of numerous other instances where he made the exact same gesture to fully able-bodied people when attacking them. (See here and decide for yourself)

As Americans’ Life Expectancy Drops, We Need More Medical Innovation Americans’ life expectancy has dropped, but technology and laws to encourage innovation can help. By Henry I. Miller —

Henry Miller, a physician and molecular biologist, is the Robert Wesson Fellow in Scientific Philosophy and Public Policy at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. He was the founding director of the Office of Biotechnology at the FDA.

One of the ways that scientists traditionally measure the well-being of a nation is to track the rate at which its citizens die, and how long they can be expected to live. So the news out of the National Center for Health Statistics earlier last month was disturbing: The overall U.S. death rate has increased for the first time in a decade, and that led to a drop in overall life expectancy for the first time since 1993.

The finding is thought to be due to a confluence of issues, including more obesity in the population, increasing long-term unemployment, more patients with chronic diseases, and a lack of breakthrough innovations to reduce the costs of care while increasing the quality of life. But the new data certainly highlight the critical need to provide better life-saving and life-prolonging therapies for patients.

While policymakers and stakeholders continue to debate how to solve these problems, there are some things that we know Congress can do to address them: enact smart, evidence-based policies, invest in private-public partnerships that enhance innovation, and eliminate roadblocks to America’s innovators.

The 21st Century Cures Act is an example of smart policies spurring solutions to the nation’s problems. This commonsense legislation, signed into law last month, is the result of years of negotiations, compromises, and passionate advocacy among countless stakeholders, including patient groups, health-care providers, hospitals, the life-science community, regulators, and more. Although not perfect, the legislation will boost research into some of the most vexing medical challenges our health-care system faces, while making sure that there are expedited pathways coupled with new resources for medical innovators and regulators to get breakthrough therapies to patients without delay.

Many roadblocks limit our nation’s innovators and entrepreneurs, some of which could be removed rapidly by Congress, especially when there is already broad, bipartisan agreement to do so. Perhaps no better example of this would be the permanent repeal of the disastrous medical-device excise tax. This monstrosity, a provision of the Affordable Care Act, was a dark cloud over medical-technology innovation during the years it was in place and led to drastic cuts in R&D, job losses, and lost opportunities to improve patient care. Congress recognized how detrimental this policy was to innovation and suspended the tax for two years, but if nothing is done, it will resume in 2018. Fully repealing the medical-device tax once and for all — which has been spearheaded by Representative Erik Paulsen (R., Minn.) — is a commonsense approach that would remove a massive obstacle to improving patient outcomes and the creation of high-tech manufacturing jobs.

Missing from the Intelligence Report: The Word ‘Podesta’ Disclosure of embarrassing information should not be confused with disinformation. By Andrew C. McCarthy

There is a word missing from the non-classified report issued Friday, in which three intelligence agencies assess “Russia’s Influence Campaign Targeting the 2016 US Presidential Election.” The FBI, CIA, and NSA elide any mention of . . . “Podesta.”

Seems like a pretty significant omission — not just because of how the 2016 campaign played out but also in light of the intelligence community’s recent history of politicizing its analyses.

The report is replete with references to Russian “cyber espionage,” “covert intelligence,” “false-flag,” “propaganda,” and “influence” operations by which Vladimir Putin is alleged to have tried to put his thumb on the electoral scale. Very sinister stuff, to be sure. But when the public hears these terms, it thinks of spies, misdirection, disinformation campaigns — i.e., schemes intended to deceive the target audience. People don’t instantly think, “Oh, you mean an effort to publicize true but embarrassing information”; they don’t read “covert operation” and say to themselves, “That must mean they subjected only one side of a political contest to a high level of scrutiny.” That’s the kind of behavior people associate with the American media, not the Kremlin.

The three intelligence agencies’ report pointedly declines to tell us what specific information gives them such “high confidence” that they know the operation of Vladimir Putin’s mind. They plead that the nature of their work does not allow for that: To tell us how they know what they purport to know would compromise intelligence methods and sources.

Fair enough. The problem, though, is that if you’re essentially going to say, “Trust us,” you have to have proven yourself trustworthy over time.

Here, we are talking about a community whose own analysts have complained that their superiors distort their reports for political purposes. In just the past few years, they have told us that they had “high confidence” that Iran suspended its nuclear weapons programs in 2003; that the NSA was not collecting metadata on millions of Americans; and that the Muslim Brotherhood is a moderate, “largely secular” organization. We have learned that the Obama administration intentionally perpetrated a disinformation campaign — complete with a compliant media “echo chamber” — to sell the public on the Iran nuclear deal (and the fiction that Iran’s regime was moderating). We have seen U.S. intelligence and law enforcement complicit in the Obama administration’s schemes to convince the public that “violent extremism,” not radical Islam, is the explanation for terrorist attacks; that a jihadist mass-murder attack targeting soldiers about to deploy to Afghanistan was “workplace violence”; that al-Qaeda had been “decimated”; that the threat of the ISIS “jayvee” team was exaggerated; and that the Benghazi massacre was not really a terrorist attack but a “protest” gone awry over an anti-Muslim video.

I can attest that the intelligence agencies overflow with patriotic Americans who do the quiet, perilous, thankless work that saves American lives. We can acknowledge this incontestable fact and still observe that, on this record, the intelligence community as an institution cannot very well expect that “Trust us” is going to get them very far.

Which brings us back to what the new report studiously avoids mentioning.

Congressman Lou Barletta’s Bill To Defund Sanctuary Cities Getting the new year off to a great start. Michael Cutler

Time and again our elected political “representatives” on all levels of government have acted in ways that failed to truly represent the best interests of America and Americans.

Time and again my articles have focused on my frustration and anger over how all too many politicians have obstructed the effective enforcement of our nation’s immigration laws.

I have written extensively about how members of Congress who supported so-called, “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” blithely ignored the findings and, indeed, warnings about the 9/11 Commission by concocting legislation that would provide unknown millions of illegal aliens with official identity documents and lawful status even though there would be no way to conduct interviews or field investigations to screen to combat immigration fraud. Visa fraud and immigration benefit fraud were identified as key entry and embedding tactics of international terrorists.

“Sanctuary Cities” created by rogue mayors operate in direct opposition of Title 8 U.S. Code § 1324 – (Bringing in and harboring certain aliens), an immigration criminal statute that address harboring, shielding, aiding and abetting, encouraging and inducing aliens to enter the United States illegally and/or remain in the United States illegally after entry.

Today, however, we have cause to be optimistic. Congressman Lou Barletta who truly represents the citizens of his home town of Hazleton, Pennsylvania and, in so doing, all Americans from coast to coast and border to border has, for the third time, introduced legislation that would strip all federal funding from cities that fail to cooperate fully with immigration law enforcement activities.

I am proud that Lou has become a personal friend.

Prior to his election to Congress he was the mayor of Hazleton. He was shocked when his peaceful town was, for lack of a better term, invaded by a violent Dominican narcotics-trafficking gang that engaged in drug dealing and violent crimes including murder.

Although he approached the administration of President George W. Bush and asked for federal assistance in confronting these illegal criminal aliens, the administration refused to help. As a consequence he promulgated the first ordinances that penalized employers who knowingly hired illegal aliens and landlords who would knowingly provide housing to illegal aliens.

He was promptly sued in federal court by advocates for illegal aliens. I was his final witness at the trial that ensued.

‘Trust Me’ Doesn’t Cut it on Russian Hacking This one-sided report smells like a political hatchet job. Kenneth R. Timmerman

Here’s the real problem with the joint intelligence report on alleged Russian hacking: without the classified details, we ordinary citizens are supposed to take the breathless allegations, presented as “high confidence” intelligence judgments, on faith.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and CIA Director John Brennan are crossing their fingers and saying, “Trust us.”

Since both are political appointees – Brennan in particular came directly out of the Obama White House, where he is believed to have orchestrated secret arms smuggling through Libya to Syrian rebels that led directly to the Benghazi disaster – excuse me if I remain skeptical.

Has Russia been engaged in sophisticated disinformation operations in the United States? Well, duh. That’s been going on for decades. During the Cold War, as General Clapper reminded the Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday, we had a separate United States Information Agency (USIA) at the State Department to combat Soviet intelligence desinformatziya and, to a lesser degree, maskirovka.

The USIA regularly issued bulletins on Soviet deception operations, and traced how they were laundered through predominantly Third World media (India was a big favorite in the 1980s) until they made it into the United States, generally as part of left-wing conspiracy outlets.

A few examples were fabricated stories that the CIA had invented AIDS, or that Korean Air Lines Flight 007, which was shot down by Soviet fighters in 1983, had been flying a covert U.S. intelligence mission. The KGB also planted forged documents to smear American politicians and then “leaked” them to (usually) unwitting journalists.

But that’s not what happened here. If we are to believe the unclassified Russian hacking report, released on Friday, Russian intelligence agents hacked into the DNC and into the Hillary Clinton campaign servers and then turned over emails it exfiltrated to DCleaks.com and to Wikileaks.

“Moscow most likely chose WikiLeaks because of its self- proclaimed reputation for authenticity. Disclosures through WikiLeaks did not contain any evident forgeries,” the report stated.

A Muslim Murder Spree in Canada’s Capital Muslim migration carries a heavy price. Daniel Greenfield

Canada’s capital is a small sleepy city of less than a million. Its average annual murder rate is only 10. That’s a weekend in Chicago. But last year something strange happened to Ottawa’s murder rate.

It shot up to 24 homicides.

The last two murders were of Somali Muslim sisters Asma and Nasiba. Their murderer was their brother, Musab A-Noor. Despite the obvious history of Muslim honor killings of women, often carried out by brothers against their sisters, Musab was found “unfit” to stand trial. A director at the Somali Centre for Family Services insisted that Somali settlers in the city need more mental health funding.

Something certainly seems to be needed.

There were an estimated 66,000 Muslim settlers in the Ottawa – Gatineau metropolitan area. Despite forming some 5 percent of the population, they are startlingly overrepresented in Ottawa’s murders.

2016 in Ottawa ended with a Muslim murder in December and it began with a Muslim murder in January. Mohamed Najdi was killed by five other Muslim men. Mohamed had probably been shot in connection with the 2015 shooting of yet another Muslim man by an accused killer named Mohammad.

And we mustn’t confuse Mohamed with Mohammad.

The other Mohammad, a Kuwaiti immigrant, had been a suspect in multiple shootings the previous year and had spent two years in prison for sexual assault.

At January’s end, Marwan Arab, Ottawa’s second homicide victim, was shot, along with his cousin. Both men were members of the Algonquin Muslim Students Association. One of the Arab cousins allegedly had links to a terror suspect. The shooting led to more arrests of Muslims for plotting another attack.

In March, Christina Voelzing became Ottawa’s sixth murder victim. The 24-year-old Algonquin college student was murdered by her ex-boyfriend Behnam Yaali. Yaali, a drug smuggler, was represented by a lawyer who also specializes in refugee law.

Twenty-four hours after almost being allowed to walk free after pleading guilty to robbery, Idris Abdulgani was arrested for murdering Lonnie Leafloor, a 56-yearold former truck driver, by stabbing him in the back of the neck.

And that was Ottawa’s seventh murder.

The Hate Group That Tracks Down ‘Hate Groups’ The despicable Southern Poverty Law Center. John Perazzo

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) was founded in 1971 by two Alabama attorneys, Morris Dees and Joseph Levin Jr. The latter served as the Center’s legal director from 1971-76, but it was Dees, who views the U.S. as an irredeemably racist nation, who would emerge as the long-term “face” of the organization.

Identifying itself as a “nonprofit civil rights organization” committed to “fighting hate and bigotry” while “seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of society,” SPLC describes the United States as a country “seething with racial violence” and “intolerance against those who are different.” “Hate in America is a dreadful, daily constant,” says the Center, and violent crimes against members of minority groups like blacks, Latinos, homosexuals, and Arabs/Muslims “are not ‘isolated incidents,’” but rather, commonplace. To combat this ugly state of affairs, SPLC dedicates itself to “tracking and exposing the activities of “hate groups and other domestic extremists” throughout the United States. Specifically, the Center’s “Hate & Extremism” initiative publishes its findings in SPLC’s Hatewatch Blog and in its quarterly journal, the Intelligence Report.

SPLC first gained widespread national recognition in 1987, when it won a $7 million verdict in a high-profile civil lawsuit against the United Klans of America (UKA). By the time that lawsuit was filed, UKA was already a destitute, impotent, disintegrating entity that virtually all white Americans emphatically rejected; the SPLC lawsuit merely drove the final nail into the UKA coffin. SPLC boasts that it has likewise won “crushing jury verdicts” that effectively shut down groups like the White Aryan Resistance, the White Patriot Party militia, and the Aryan Nations.

This has been SPLC’s modus operandi since its inception: to initiate lawsuits against prominent hate groups for crimes that their individual members commit. In these suits, declares Morris Dees proudly: “We absolutely take no prisoners. When we get into a legal fight we go all the way.” The leftist writer Ken Silverstein, who in 2000 wrote a penetrating exposé of SPLC for Harper’s magazine, has noted that the targets of these lawsuits tend to be “mediagenic villains” who are “eager to show off their swastikas for the news cameras.” As Dees and SPLC well understand, such figures stand the best chance of triggering an emotional public response that translates, in turn, into financial contributions from donors eager to combat the perceived threat.

SPLC claims that there are currently 892 active “hate groups” in the U.S. Asserting that the vast majority of such organizations are “right wing,” the Center says they include “the Ku Klux Klan,” “the neo-Nazi movement,” “neo-Confederates,” “racist skinheads,” “antigovernment militias,” “Christian Identity adherents,” and a variety of “anti-immigrant,” “anti-LGBT,” “anti-Muslim,” and “alternative Right” organizations. While also identifying a tiny smattering of black separatist entities as hate groups, SPLC takes pains to point out that black organizations must be judged by a different standard than their white counterparts, because “much black racism in America is, at least in part, a response to centuries of white racism.”