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September 2017

Establishment GOP Puts Cronies over Country on Missile Defense By Angelo Codevilla

As North Korea demonstrates America’s vulnerability to ballistic missiles, and as President Trump pledges “many billions of dollars” for “the anti-missile,” establishment Republicans are poised to use missile defense talk today in the same way they did in the wake of Ronald Reagan’s commitment to it: profit politically from rhetoric, funnel money to the best-connected contractors, and accomplish nothing. https://amgreatness.com/2017/09/12/establishment-gop-puts-cronies-over-country-on-missile-defense2/

Since Reagan restored missile defense to the nation’s agenda 34 years ago, Republicans have led the spending of some 80 billion dollars on its behalf. But they have acquiesced as the U.S government has crafted each and every program according to one overarching policy: to put no barrier to missiles from China or Russia reaching Americans.

Accordingly, our so-called National Missile Defense is but a hamstrung token. Using the same logic with respect to technology, we are depriving the equipment we build for defense against threats such as North Korea and Iran from all capacity defend against China and Russia. In practice, this means that it is less capable of doing anything. Today, malnourished North Korea is on the cusp of overwhelming every defense we’ve got, in Alaska and California, as well as in the Western Pacific.

Republicans banked votes, contractors banked the money, and America’s vulnerabilities deepened. Unless President Trump changes basic policy, the cycle repeats.

A $30 Billion Boondoggle
The Establishment Republicans’ intellectual guide, the Wall Street Journal, has just pointed the way. In an obituary (September 2-3) and an editorial (September 6), it celebrated George A. Keyworth, the White House science adviser from 1981 until 1984, as “the Godfather of Missile defense.” In fact, no one was more responsible than Keyworth for turning President Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative into a research program that produced zero anti-missile weapons—by design. The so-called Fletcher Panel that he created defined SDI by precluding building defensive devices, restricting its mandate to long-term research. He staffed it exclusively with delegates from the national labs and their contractors. They divvied up some $30 billion to fund their favorite hobby horses.

Some—Edward Teller’s and Lowell Wood’s X-ray laser and free-electron laser—were patent scientific frauds that discredited the initiative. But steering programs to the right people got Keyworth a seat on Hewlett-Packard’s board of directors. Hence from the very first, SDI was a typical U.S-government program: soaring rhetoric that covered a feeding trough for well-connected interest groups. One of its former directors, asked what SDI had produced, waved a report titled, “What We Got for $30 Billion.” An expensive missile-swatter.

The Journal also says, “to the extent that the North Korean nuclear threat is at all containable,” it is because SDI “eventually gave us systems like THAAD.” Thus does the Journal show the Republican Establishment’s nonchalant ignorance. The combination of interceptor missile and radar called Theater High Altitude Defense was a U.S. Army program. All it owes to SDI and its Missile Defense Agency successor are limitations, such as depriving the interceptor of a warhead and requiring it to crash directly onto the oncoming warhead. This added layers of technical complexity—e.g. exquisite reductions in vibrations—and added to the cost of nearly $1 billion per battery. Expense, and hence scarcity, is one reason why even North Korea can overwhelm it quantitatively.

THAAD’s effective range is set by how soon after the offensive missile takes off the interceptor may be launched. The reason why the interceptor, whose physical range is just over 500 miles, has an effective range of only 120 miles is the policy (in the spirit of the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty) that requires our interceptors to be programmed and launched only by radar/fire control systems co-located with the interceptor. The THAAD warning radar is not equipped to program and fire interceptors. (Just now, Navy Aegis ships networked with one another are being given a partial exemption).

Blinded By Partisanship
More fundamentally, all U.S interceptors continue to be hampered by their radars’ inability to look over the earth’s curvature to see missiles being launched by China and Russia (or Iran, or North Korea’s interior). Already a generation ago a network of infrared satellites was being designed that would have made it possible see all such launches as they happened and to launch interceptors with plenty of time to stop them at maximum range. But the SDI office and its successor canceled that. It would have displeased Russia and China. Thanks, SDI!


Western media have been having a field day with the story of the eviction of the Arab Shamasneh family from a house in east Jerusalem. The case has been presented as an example of cruel and callous Israelis throwing an elderly Arab couple onto the street in order to “Judaise” the Shimon HaTzadik area of east Jerusalem.http://www.melaniephillips.com/wicked-media-distortion-shamasne-eviction-fancy/

On her Times of Israel blog, however, Lyn Julius puts this story into a rather different perspective with facts that the western media failed to report (well, just fancy that!). She writes:

Sixty-nine years ago, the Hubara family, a Jewish family living in Shimonº Hatzaddik, were expelled when the British-led Arab legion invaded and occupied the city during the early stages of Israel’s War of Independence.

Called ‘Sheikh Jarrah’ by the city’s Arab population, Shimon Hatzaddik, the site of Simon the Just’s tomb and surrounding pilgrims’ residences, was owned by the Ashkenazi and Sephardi communities. It was emptied of its Jews in 1948, the Jews being the first refugees of the war. Their homes came under the jurisdiction of the Jordanian Custodian for Absentee Property who proceeded to rent the properties to local Arabs.

When the Israelis recaptured East Jerusalem in 1967, the former Jewish owners found themselves in a position to reclaim what had been theirs. Dozens of former owners have embarked on protracted legal struggles to recover their homes.

However, the Israeli courts have protected the Arab tenants’ rights. Only where they have failed to pay rent have the courts’ judgements gone against the Arab residents.

Of all the press reports of the Shamasneh case, only Ynet News and Arutz Sheva (and an early report in Haaretz) have reported that the Shamasnehs failed to pay rent. Few press have bothered even to mention the historical context of the Jewish expulsion from east Jerusalem in 1948. The motive attributed to the Jewish claimants has been to ‘Judaise’ Jerusalem – ‘to throw out the Arabs and expand Jewish settlement.’

Ten years ago, the Hubaras sold their property rights on to Aryeh King of the Israel Land Fund. King declared that the Arab family ceased paying rent five years ago. “I don’t trust them anymore because they have a debt of 180,000 shekels [about $50,000] for rent, and damage of another 160,000 shekels.” King says he told them if they provide a cheque from a guarantor he could trust, he would consider letting them stay longer, but they refused. It’s unpleasant, he said, but “they did everything possible so [the eviction] would happen.”

As for reports that the elderly Arab parents are being turned out on the street, King told Haaretz: “The elderly parents have no reason whatsoever to remain in the street because their daughter lives right next door, and there is evidence they will receive housing aid from the European Union.”

The Israeli courts have been known not to enforce an eviction order against Arab squatters where they have no other home to go to.

A second falsehood propagated by the media has been that ‘the law allows Jews to reclaim their property but “no such law exists for Palestinians”.

According to the Israel Lands Administration, as of 1993, 14,692 Arabs claimed compensation under the Absentee Property Law and the Validation and Compensation Law. Claims were settled with respect to 200,905 dunams of land, a total of NIS 9,956,828 had been paid as compensation, and 54,481 dunams of land had been given in compensation (Israel Lands Administration Report for 1993).

As recently as 21 March 2016, Gulf News Palestine reported: “Increasing numbers of Palestinian landowners are accepting monetary compensation for land and properties they owned inside the Green Line….Active groups of land dealers and lawyers have been implementing the Israeli regime’s plan to convince the displaced Palestinian landowners to accept compensation deals and give up their rights to their lands and properties.’

The landlords are warned not to accept compensation lest it jeopardise the Palestinian ‘Right of Return’.


There are many things that could be said about Tony Blair’s suggestion that the UK should toughen its immigration policy to reduce the numbers coming in from Europe. He claims this can be done “by measures within our own law or by negotiation with Europe”. Hey presto! – the British will then suddenly come to their senses, demand a second referendum and vote to stay in the EU after all.

I don’t know which is the most startling here – the fantastic magical thinking, the fathomless hypocrisy or the deep contempt Blair displays for democracy and the British people.

“We can curtail the things that people feel are damaging about European immigration,” he writes on today’s Sunday Times website (£), “both by domestic policy change and by agreeing change within Europe to the freedom of movement principle, including supporting the campaign of President Emmanuel Macron on the ‘posted workers directive’”.

An allied report by the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change recommends forcing EU migrants to register on arrival in the UK, restricting access to free healthcare for unemployed EU migrants, letting universities and businesses discriminate against them in favour of British citizens and banning those EU migrants with no permission to reside in Britain from renting or opening bank accounts.

In the Observer, the former Labour minister Lord Adonis makes a similar pitch, arguing that the British could reverse their referendum decision if France and Germany agree the UK can take control of immigration while staying in the EU single market.

The first thing to say is the the EU will not change its free movement principle for anyone. Why should it? If it were to do so for the UK, the pressure to do the same for other member states would become a stampede.

Secondly, if anyone believes that mandatory checks will stop the flow of EU migrants they must be living in cloud cuckoo-land. UK border controls have been in chaos for years. Why should that change just because Blair and Adonis want the British people to change their minds on the EU? This is pie in an anti-democratic sky.

Third, Blair’s hypocrisy is truly jaw-dropping. Who was it who relaxed immigration policy in order to import hundreds of thousands of people from abroad in order to transform Britain into a multicultural society? Step forward Tony Blair and his Labour successor, Gordon Brown. Who was it who introduced the Human Rights Act, thus embedding human rights dogma with its inbuilt bias against majority cultural norms and stimulating judicial overreach so that the courts made it almost impossible to deport anyone – and almost impossible, for that matter, to discriminate against groups of people in precisely the way Blair is now openly suggesting EU citizens should be discriminated against? Why, none other than Tony Blair.

Blithely, he now says his encouragement of mass immigration belonged to another era. Well, I saw how bitterly it was opposed by the public when they finally realised how the country was being transformed, and how they were (and still are) demonised as a result for racism and xenophobia. With cavalier insouciance, Blair also claims that other EU member states find it perfectly simple to deport people. That’s untrue too: across the EU, deportation has been managed in relatively few cases.

Not only is this proposal hypocritical and unworkable but it also misses the most important point. People in the UK voted to leave the EU not just because of their significant concerns over immigration. More important than that, as they have repeatedly confirmed, they wanted the UK once again to have sovereign power over its own laws and policies.

Even if France and Germany were to cook up a supposed exemption to allow the UK to control its own immigration rules, the overarching loss of sovereignty entailed by remaining in the single market – with the “intersectionality” of the EU’s internal rules – would mean that the UK would still be caught one way or another, not least because it would still be subject to the rulings of the European Court of Justice. And what the British wanted most of all when they voted Leave was that the UK should once again be a sovereign nation, with a democratically elected parliament making its own laws which would no longer be subject to the superior authority of a foreign court.

Neither Blair nor Adonis can ever understand this supremely important fact – that the issue, above all, was and is democracy. They don’t believe this was the issue. They dismiss sovereignty as of no concern to the vast majority of people.

And that’s for one very simple reason. It’s of no concern to them. And that’s because, as fanatics in the EU cause, they actually think that the loss of democratic sovereignty advances the welfare of the world. They don’t believe in the sovereign European nation. They believe in the supranational EU project because they have no faith in their nation. They believe their country can only prosper if it negates its own sovereign power.

And that, after all, is the core belief that animates the EU.

Iran: See a Pattern? by Shoshana Bryen

Israel has conducted approximately 100 strikes inside Syria in the six years of civil war, not to change the course of battle or support one side over the other, but to eliminate weapons and facilities deemed unacceptable threats to Israel — including missile factories, a nuclear reactor and now a chemical weapons factory.

Guterres, Kushner and Greenblatt focused on the narrowest threat in the Middle East — the possibility that the Palestinians will continue to make low-level warfare against Israel. They ignored the role of Iran and its proxies. In effect, they performed the role of Nero with his fiddle.

If you have not been paying attention, the last thing you heard was that Syria had used sarin gas attack on civilians in 2013. President Obama’s “red line” was washed pink in an agreement with Russia to remove the weapons and destroy them at sea. The U.N. Organization for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) special coordinator Sigrid Kaang, in a remarkably precise statement, said 96% percent of Syria’s declared chemical weapons were destroyed. Not 95% or 87% or 43.5%, but 96% on the nose. Secretary of State Kerry said: “In record time, even amid a civil war, we removed and have now destroyed the most dangerous chemicals in the regime’s declared stockpiles.”

It was good PR, but as a solution to a deadly violation of international law, it was a huge, gaping failure. The word “declared” is the giveaway — Syria was allowed to tell inspectors what it had and where, and the inspectors were allowed only to touch those sites. It you think they cheated, you are right.

This week, the Israel Air Force destroyed a “research center” in Syria, one that “researched” chemical weapons. The attack came the morning after U.N. investigators said the Syrian government was responsible for a sarin gas attack in April 2017. Israel has conducted approximately 100 strikes inside Syria in the six years of civil war, not to change the course of battle or support one side over the other, but to eliminate weapons and facilities deemed unacceptable threats to Israel — including missile factories, a nuclear reactor and now a chemical weapons factory.

Here is the lesson. Focus on the real regional threats and push off peripheral issues.

Iran and its proxies Hezbollah and Hamas — oddly enough, Shiite Iran is Sunni Hamas’s biggest backer both militarily and financially. There are more than 100,000 rockets and missiles in southern Lebanon, controlled by Hezbollah and aimed at Israel.

Iran and its occupation of Syria, as the Russians seek to nail down their bases but prefer to exercise influence from Moscow without a large military presence in the country. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said last week that Israel’s interests in Syria “would be taken into account,” but with Russia hoping to leave and Iran planning to stay, Russia’s leverage is questionable.

Iran and its unconventional weapons – it was Iran that facilitated the Syrian chemical weapons program, and Iran and North Korea that built the nuclear facility in Syria that Israel destroyed in 2007.

Iran’s physical presence in the Sunni areas of Iraq in pursuit of a land-bridge from Iran to the Mediterranean Sea. Iran’s harassment of U.S. and other ships in the Persian Gulf and the Red Sea, encircling Saudi Arabia in the south and potentially cutting off Israel and Jordan’s access through the Bab el-Mandeb Straits to the Indian Ocean. The “Shiite Crescent” is a “Shiite Encirclement.”

See a pattern?

Germany Redefines Most Anti-Semitism Out of Existence Evelyn Gordon

A debate rages among American Jews as to whether right-wing or left-wing anti-Semitism poses the greater danger. Germany has come up with a novel solution to this dilemma that will undoubtedly delight denialists of the left-wing version: Simply redefine Jew-hatred as a “politically motivated right-wing extremist crime,” and by definition, you’ve eliminated all other kinds of anti-Semitism. https://www.commentarymagazine.com/anti-semitism/germany-redefines-anti-semitism-existence/

Last week, the German Interior Ministry released a report on anti-Semitism which stated that during the first eight months of this year, a whopping 92 percent of anti-Semitic incidents were committed by right-wing extremists. That sounded suspicious for two reasons, which I’ll get to later, but since I don’t speak German, I couldn’t scrutinize the report for myself. Fortunately, the German dailyDie Welt found the results equally suspicious, and this week, Benjamin Weinthal of the Jerusalem Post reported on some of the problems it flagged.

Weinthal explained that in a federal report on anti-Semitism issued by the German government earlier this year, “the crime of ‘Jew-hatred’ is classified in the category of ‘politically motivated right-wing extremist crime.’” But once Jew-hatred has been declared a right-wing crime by definition, most of its perpetrators will inevitably be classified as far-right extremists, even if they shouldn’t be.

Die Welt cited one particularly blatant example from summer 2014 when Israel was at war with Hamas in Gaza. The war sparked numerous anti-Israel protests, and during one, 20 Hezbollah supporters shouted the Nazi slogan “Sieg Heil” at pro-Israel demonstrators in Berlin. Hezbollah supporters are Islamic extremists, not neo-Nazis, even if they chose to taunt German Jews by hurling Nazi slogans at them. Nevertheless, the incident was classified as a far-right extremist crime, thereby neatly removing a case of Islamic anti-Semitism from the statistics.

There are two good reasons for thinking the linguistic acrobatics, in this case, represents the rule rather than the exception. First, a 2014 study of 14,000 pieces of hate mail sent over a 10-year period to the Central Council of Jews in Germany and the Israeli embassy in Berlin found that only three percent came from far-right extremists. Over 60 percent came from the educated mainstream–professors, PhDs, lawyers, priests, university and high-school students. And these letters were definitely anti-Semitic rather than merely anti-Israel; they included comments such as “It is possible that the murder of innocent children suits your long tradition?” and “For the last 2,000 years, you’ve been stealing land and committing genocide.”

Sending hate mail is an anti-Semitic incident in its own right, even if it’s not reported to the police (as most of these letters undoubtedly weren’t). Thus unless you want to make the dubious claim that Germany’s educated mainstream–unlike that of other Western countries–consists largely of far-right extremists, it’s clear that far-right extremists aren’t the only people actively committing anti-Semitic acts.

Hillary’s Climate of Hate She’s an evil, crooked, self-centered, corrupt heap of incompetence. By Michelle Malkin see note

Since Hillary is setting records as a sore loser harridan with he book tour, I thought this column from 2016 says it best….rsk

Who are the haters? Who are the autocrats? Who are the serial abusers of power?

Only one presidential candidate has wielded the sledgehammer of government against personal enemies.

Only one presidential candidate has exploited a spouse’s public office to exact revenge on political dissenters.

Only one presidential candidate has a quarter-century track record of taxpayer-subsidized demagoguery and class warfare.

And, as the most recent undercover investigation by James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas revealed this past week, only one presidential candidate has been directly linked to a scheme to foment chaos and violence at her opponent’s rallies.

Ignore the kindly grandma with the “Stronger Together” backdrop warbling about her happy family and singing the praises of diversity and inclusion. Look beyond the carefully manufactured semblance of bipartisanship and moderation.

Remember history — or rather, “herstory.”

Hillary Clinton isn’t just a nasty woman. She’s a ruthless hatemonger devoted wholly to two corrupt pursuits while on the federal teat: tearing down and cashing in.

To clueless millennials, “bimbo eruptions” might sound like a Trumpism. But it was vintage Team Hillary’s misogynistic moniker for horndog Slick Willie’s accuser outbreaks in the 1990s.

Respect for women? This is the snarling elitist who attacked Gennifer Flowers, a paramour of her cheating husband, as a “failed cabaret singer” whom she would verbally “crucify” if she had the chance.

Just how vindictive can Crooked Grandma be? Ask the people who know her best. David Watkins, a former top administrative aide from Arkansas in the Clinton administration, laid out the then-first-lady’s central role in the crony-motivated White House travel-office firings.

The Clintons’ old pal, Hollywood producer Harry Thomason, had pushed for wholesale dismissal of travel-office staff in favor of their connected friends.

“We both know that there would be hell to pay,” Watkins informed chief of staff Thomas McLarty, if “we failed to take swift and decisive action in conformity with the First Lady’s wishes.”

Indeed, Hill unleashed hell. Watkins was sacked under the guise of punishment for using a government helicopter as transportation to a golfing event — something that’s a privilege for presidents, not peons.

He was far from alone. Bill and Hill’s IRS (two for the price of one, don’t forget) targeted conservative think tanks and nonprofits. Bill and Hill’s FBI improperly and illegally accessed the files of countless citizens who inconveniently ruined the Clinton narrative.

And the woman who just weeks ago mauled millions of Trump supporters nationwide as “irredeemable” and “deplorable” is a pro at sweeping demonizations.

Hillary Lies Again The loser of 2016 slanders President Trump’s inaugural address. By Deroy Murdock

What a way to peddle books.

Hillary Clinton, the woman who lost the White House to a candidate who never competed seriously for so much as a school-board seat, took to the airwaves to slander the man who crushed her political dreams.

President Donald J. Trump’s inaugural address was “a cry from the white-nationalist gut,” the Duchess of Chappaqua proclaimed on Sunday while pitching What Happened, her brand-new, blame-all extravaganza about why her Oval Office bid crashed and burned. As she further pronounced in an audience that she granted to CBS News: “What an opportunity to say, ‘Okay, I’m proud of my supporters, but I’m president of all Americans.’ That’s not what we heard at all.”


In a case of he said/she said “he didn’t say,” President Trump uttered nearly verbatim the very words that Hillary accused him of not expressing. Consider these direct quotes excerpted from President Trump’s remarks, immediately after taking the Oath of Office:

We, the citizens of America, are now joined in a great national effort to rebuild our country and to restore its promise for all of our people. . . .

The oath of office I take today is an oath of allegiance to all Americans. . . .

So to all Americans, in every city near and far, small and large, from mountain to mountain, and from ocean to ocean, hear these words:

You will never be ignored again.

Your voice, your hopes, and your dreams, will define our American destiny. And your courage and goodness and love will forever guide us along the way.

Together, We Will Make America Strong Again.

We Will Make America Wealthy Again.

We Will Make America Proud Again.

We Will Make America Safe Again.

And, Yes, Together, We Will Make America Great Again.

Funny, President Trump’s inclusive, unifying inaugural address contains the words “we” 49 times, “I” thrice, and “white” exactly once: “It is time to remember that old wisdom our soldiers will never forget: that whether we are black or brown or white, we all bleed the same red blood of patriots, we all enjoy the same glorious freedoms, and we all salute the same great American Flag.”


Sixteen years ago, nineteen members of al Qaeda, an Islamic terrorist group, boarded four planes in three cities. Within minutes, three thousand people were dead. It was the first act of war by a foreign group on continental U.S. since the burning of Washington, D.C. in August 1814. More people died that bright sunny morning than American servicemen at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, or American soldiers on June 6, 1944.

The war against Islamic militants continues to this day. For anyone who does not believe they pose a threat to western civilization, your naivete is only exceeded by your ignorance. Since 9/11, tens of thousands lie dead in dozens of countries, on every continent except Antarctica, victims of the murderous rampage of Islamic extremists from numerous groups, like ISIS and Boko Haram. Make no mistake; it is religion that drives them. They believe they are serving God. Osama bin Laden is dead, thank goodness, but al Qaeda has quietly rebuilt. It is estimated that they have 20,000 fighters in Syria, 7,000 in Somalia and 4,000 in Yemen.

The end can only come when millions of moderate Muslims rise-up, against those who have hi-jacked their religion.

But this day is also one my family celebrates, for it was on this day 51 years ago that our first child was born – a son and now husband to a beautiful and talented wife and father to four wonderful grandchildren.

These two events are reminders that in death there is birth, that life moves on. They are reminders that, while the past is all of ours, the future belongs to the young. And the greatest legacy we can leave is a knowledge of history, the willingness to face facts unafraid, and to love all those we hold dear.


Who are the Rohingya?

The Rohingya are a minority living in Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, where they are not recognized by the government as an official group and are denied citizenship. An estimated 1 million Rohingya are stateless Muslims in an overwhelmingly Buddhist country that has long been hostile to their presence.
Why did the Rohingya exodus from Myanmar begin?

The mass evacuation from Myanmar’s northern Rakhine state began Aug. 25 after a group of Rohingya militants attacked police outposts and a military base, killing a dozen officers. The military responded with what it deemed “clearance operations” to root out fighters it said might be hiding in villages. As a result, hundreds of thousands of Rohingya have escaped the military crackdown and vigilante attacks that have burned villages and killed hundreds.
What is the U.S. saying?

The United States said it is “deeply troubled” by the Myanmar crisis. White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the Trump administration continues to condemn the violence between Rohingya Muslims and Myanmar security forces.
What is Iran saying?

Iran’s Supreme Leader strongly denounced the killing of Muslims in Myanmar. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said the deaths of Rohingya Muslims is a political disaster for Myanmar because it is being carried out by a government led by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi. He called her a “brutal woman.”

‘Burma Calling’: Al-Qaeda Orders Jihadists to Rescue Rohingya ‘by Force’ By Bridget Johnson

Al-Qaeda has called for jihadists to report to Burma to fight for the Rohingya minority as they fall victim to “a conspiracy hatched by the forces of International Disbelief against Islam and Muslims.”

In a statement issued by al-Qaeda’s general leadership, the terror group said the “conspiracy” is “marked by the usurpation of the rights of Muslims, occupation of their lands, defilement of their holy places, all under the guise of fighting terrorism!”

“The usage and espousal of the term ‘the fight against terrorism’ has become the latest trend which every ruler must keep up with as a pledge of allegiance and devotion to the powerful in the system – a sacrament of penance to secure remission of all his crimes and failings and to be rewarded perhaps with a Nobel Prize for Peace – a badge worn by every professional criminal and murderer,” the statement added.

That’s a reference to Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, who was awarded the prize during her opposition to the junta and has been called out by the United States and others for not acting on the violent pushback against Rohingya people — largely Sunni, with a Hindu minority — after the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army attacked an army base Aug. 25. That has resulted in a flood of refugees — some 300,000, according to the White House — heading for safety in Bangladesh.

“In Rakhine State, the plight of the Rohingya in particular is one of the greatest human tragedies anywhere in the region,” Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Southeast Asia Patrick Murphy told reporters Friday. “They’re not the only ethnic minority facing challenges even in that area. I mentioned earlier the ethnic Rakhine, themselves a minority population, suffering from underdevelopment and limited rights over many, many years. But the Rohingya certainly stand out, and the fact that over a million of them inside the country have been devoid of basic rights for generations has been a longstanding issue and a longstanding concern for us in the United States. It needs to be addressed.”

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement Monday evening that “the massive displacement and victimization of people, including large numbers of the ethnic Rohingya community and other minorities, shows that Burmese security forces are not protecting civilians.”

“We are alarmed by the allegations of human rights abuses, including extrajudicial killings, burning of villages, massacres, and rape, by security forces and by civilians acting with these forces’ consent,” she said.

UN High Commissioner on Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein told the Human Rights Council on Monday that the United Nations has “received multiple reports and satellite imagery of security forces and local militia burning Rohingya villages, and consistent accounts of extrajudicial killings, including shooting fleeing civilians.” The government claims that villagers have been burning their own homes. CONTINUE AT SITE