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Ruth King

Let It Be The best thing to do about Confederate statues is . . . nothing. By Kevin D. Williamson

I am never quite sure whether I am really a Southerner. Texas was in the Confederacy, but West Texas is a lot more Albuquerque than Birmingham. I have never felt any sympathy for the Lost Cause. If I were building monuments to figures from that era, I’d choose Frederick Douglass, Thaddeus Stevens, or, if I’m in a mood, John Brown.

Southerners — and some conservative sentimentalists — tell themselves two convenient lies about the Civil War. One is that the Confederate cause was an honorable one, the other is that the war wasn’t really about slavery. Neither of those stands up to very much scrutiny, and the former is mostly false in no small part because the latter is almost entirely false.

There were honorable men fighting on the Southern side, to be sure, and their fight was an honorable one to the extent that risking life and limb on behalf of one’s home and people is generally honorable. General Lee is widely considered to have been an honorable military man, and so was Field Marshal Rommel. But General Lee’s cause was destroying the United States of America to facilitate slavery. The historical record, including practically every Confederate document explaining Southern separation, makes that clear enough. That the abolitionists were imperfect in their commitment to the liberation of the slaves and that there were Southern men of conscience who detested slavery and yet fought on behalf of its preserver does not change any of that. The War Between the States wasn’t about cotton tariffs.

Many of the monuments and statues now being abominated and disassembled were not erected in the immediate aftermath of the Civil War but some years after, often in reaction to such modest advances in the political and social condition of African Americans as the early 20th century produced. Some were nothing short of consecrated shrines to white supremacy erected to Southern political powers in league with such miscreants as the Ku Klux Klan. To the extent that today’s reaction against these monuments is in essence Democrats cleaning up their own mess, there is some justice to it.

But there would have been some justice to it in 1938 or 1964 as well. The current attack on Confederate monuments is only another front in the Left’s endless kulturkampf. The Left is committed to always being on the offense in the culture wars, and, with Donald Trump and his white-resentment politics installed in the White House and Republicans lined up queasily behind him, the choice of going after Confederate totems is clever. It brings out the kooks and the cranks, and some respectable conservatives feel obliged to defend them. Getting Republicans to re-litigate the Civil War is a great victory for the Democrats, who were, after all, on the wrong side of it as a matter of historical fact. Rather than embrace their party’s proudest and finest legacy, Republicans are now trying to explain away President Trump’s insistence that there were some very fine gentlemen among the tiki-Nazis in Charlottesville. President Trump’s schoolboy forensics is here particularly embarrassing. From Abraham Lincoln to Donald Trump: Evolution runs backward for American political parties.

We should not, in any case, accept the fiction that what is transpiring at the moment is a moral crusade rather than political opportunism.

Monuments have a way of being repurposed: Rome is an overwhelmingly Christian city, and its most famous monument is the Colosseum, where Christians were put to death for sport and for political gain. (It was, however, more common for martyrs to meet their fate at the Circus Maximus.) A famous Roman obelisk, originally brought from Egypt by Caligula as a symbol of imperial power, today stands in St. Peter’s Square, crowned by a small reliquary believed to contain fragments of the True Cross. The Roman Catholics might have proceeded in the same way as the Taliban with Buddhist monuments, smashing every relic of their pagan forebears. The Christian world has undergone such paroxysms from time to time: Iconoclasm is puritanism in vandalism.

Silicon Valley Billionaires Are the New Robber Barons Progressives forget their history of breaking up mega-corporations as they lionize tech giants such as Apple, Google, and Facebook. By Victor Davis Hanson

Progressives used to pressure U.S. corporations to cut back on outsourcing and on the tactic of building their products abroad to take advantage of inexpensive foreign workers.

During the 2012 election, President Obama attacked Mitt Romney as a potential illiberal “outsourcer-in-chief” for investing in companies that went overseas in search of cheap labor.

Yet most of the computers and smartphones sold by Silicon Valley companies are still being built abroad — to mostly silence from progressive watchdogs.

In the case of the cobalt mining that is necessary for the production of lithium-ion batteries in electric cars, thousands of child laborers in southern Africa are worked to exhaustion.

In the 1960s, campuses boycotted grapes to support Cesar Chavez’s unionization of farm workers. Yet it is unlikely that there will be any effort to boycott tech companies that use lithium-ion batteries produced from African-mined cobalt.

Progressives demand higher taxes on the wealthy. They traditionally argue that tax gimmicks and loopholes are threats to the republic.

Yet few seem to care that West Coast conglomerates such as Amazon, Apple, Google, and Starbucks filtered hundreds of billions in global profits through tax havens such as Bermuda, shorting the United States billions of dollars in income taxes.

The progressive movement took hold in the late 19th century to “trust-bust,” or break up corporations that had cornered the markets in banking, oil, steel, and railroads. Such supposedly foul play had inordinately enriched “robber baron” buccaneers such as John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Mellon, Andrew Carnegie, and J. P. Morgan.

Yet today, the riches of multibillionaires dwarf the wealth of their 19th-century predecessors. Most West Coast corporate wealth was accumulated by good old-fashioned American efforts to achieve monopolies and stifle competition.

Facebook, with 2 billion monthly global users, has now effectively cornered social media.

Google has monopolized internet searches — and modulates users’ search results to accommodate its own business profiteering.

Amazon is America’s new octopus. Its growing tentacles incorporate not just online sales but also media and food retailing.

Yet there are no modern-day progressive muckrakers in the spirit of Upton Sinclair, Frank Norris, and Lincoln Steffens, warning of the dangers of techie monopolies or the astronomical accumulation of wealth. Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, and Facebook are worth nearly $1 trillion each.

NETANYAHU’S GREAT CHALLENGE : CAROLINE GLICK

What can Netanyahu do to mitigate the impact of the probes on his ability to do his job?

Over the weekend, it was reported that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu supports legislation that would change the procedure for declaring war. The bill, supported by the government as well as by Netanyahu’s opponent and former finance minister Yair Lapid, involves implementing lessons learned from past experiences.

Under the suggested law, the government will provide the security cabinet with blanket authority to authorize military operations at the beginning of its tenure. By limiting the number of people involved in decision making regarding actual operations, leaks can be minimized and the element of surprise can be protected.

Given the wide support the bill enjoys, and its substance, the media could have been expected to cover the move in a sober-minded way.

But alas, there was no chance of that happening amid the media circus surrounding the criminal probes of Netanyahu. The desultory probes were recently fortified by the deal Netanyahu’s former chief of staff Ari Harow cut with the prosecution to incriminate his former boss in exchange for leniency in the ongoing corruption probe of Harow’s alleged influence peddling.

Now, with Netanyahu’s sworn enemies in the media and the political Left braying for his immediate resignation, the war powers bill, like everything else he is likely to initiate in the coming months and years, is being reported as nothing more than an attempt to change the subject.

None of the probes are expected to conclude any time soon. Legal experts assess they will stretch well into 2019. This means Netanyahu will be under a cloud of suspicion at least until the end of his current term of office. And that is not good for the country.

So what can Netanyahu do to mitigate the impact of the probes on his ability to do his job? The answer is complicated. On the one hand, it is fairly clear that he won’t be able to do anything to end the probes and not because he is accused of doing terrible things. To the contrary, he is accused of doing ridiculously stupid and harmless things.

The police are conducting two investigations of the prime minister. In the first, they are investigating whether he received too many gifts from his friends. Specifically, they want to know if he received too many cigars from his friend Arnon Milchen and whether he received other presents from other friends.

The second probe relates to a deal he discussed but never made with his arch-nemesis Yediot Aharonot publisher Arnon Mozes under which Mozes would give less hostile coverage of Netanyahu and in exchange, Netanyahu would get Yediot’s pro-Netanyahu competitor Israel Hayom to cut back its circulation. In the event, the talks went nowhere. In 2014 Netanyahu broke up his government and went to early elections in 2015 to prevent a bill – supported by 24 lawmakers in a preliminary vote – which would have bankrupted Israel Hayom from moving forward.

The 24 lawmakers that supported the bill received terrific coverage in Yediot. But none of them – including former justice minister Tzipi Livni – are under investigation. The police’s lack of interest in Livni is particularly notable. She advanced the bill despite the fact that then attorney general Yehuda Weinstein determined it was unconstitutional. She based her decision on a legal opinion produced for her by Yediot’s attorney.

FINALLY, THE third investigation doesn’t involve Netanyahu at all. Instead his attorney, confidante and cousin David Shimron is under investigation. And according to investigative reporter Yoav Yitzhak, the probe unraveled this week when the state’s witness was shown to have lied either to police investigators or to his own attorneys about Shimron’s role in brokering a deal for Israel to buy new submarines from Germany.

Netanyahu supported the purchase, indeed, he touted it. His media foes allege that he only supported the purchase, which was opposed by the Defense Ministry, because Shimron was involved.

This allegation itself makes clear the absurdity of the probe.

WHEN LIBERALS CLUB PEOPLE, IT’S WITH LOVE IN THEIR HEARTS The violence that the Left refuses to condemn. Ann Coulter

Apparently, as long as violent leftists label their victims “fascists,” they are free to set fires, smash windows and beat civilians bloody. No police officer will stop them. They have carte blanche to physically assault anyone they disapprove of, including Charles Murray, Heather Mac Donald, Ben Shapiro, me and Milo Yiannopoulos, as well as anyone who wanted to hear us speak.

Even far-left liberals like Evergreen State professor Bret Weinstein will be stripped of police protection solely because the mob called him a “racist.”

If the liberal shock troops deem local Republicans “Nazis” — because some of them support the duly elected Republican president — Portland will cancel the annual Rose Festival parade rather than allow any Trump supporters to march.

They’re all “fascists”! Ipso facto, the people cracking their skulls and smashing store windows are “anti-fascists,” or as they call themselves, “antifa.”

We have no way of knowing if the speakers at the Charlottesville “Unite the Right” rally last weekend were “Nazis,” “white supremacists” or passionate Civil War buffs, inasmuch as they weren’t allowed to speak. The Democratic governor shut the event down, despite a court order to let it proceed.

We have only visuals presented to us by the activist media, showing some participants with Nazi paraphernalia. But for all we know, the Nazi photos are as unrepresentative of the rally as that photo of the drowned Syrian child is of Europe’s migrant crisis. Was it 1 percent Nazi or 99 percent Nazi?

As the “Unite the Right” crowd was dispersing, they were forced by the police into the path of the peace-loving, rock-throwing, fire-spraying antifa. A far-left reporter for The New York Times, Sheryl Gay Stolberg, tweeted live from the event: “The hard left seemed as hate-filled as alt-right. I saw club-wielding ‘antifa’ beating white nationalists being led out of the park.”

That’s when protestor James Fields sped his car into a crowd of the counter-protesters, then immediately hit reverse, injuring dozens of people, and killing one woman, Heather Heyer.

This has been universally labeled “terrorism,” but we still don’t know whether Fields hit the gas accidentally, was in fear for his life or if he rammed the group intentionally and maliciously.

With any luck, we’ll unravel Fields’ motives faster than it took the Obama administration to discern the motives of a Muslim shouting “Allahu Akbar!” while gunning down soldiers at Fort Hood. (Six years.)

But so far, all we know is that Fields said he was “upset about black people” and wanted to kill as many as possible. On his Facebook page, he displayed a “White Power” poster and “liked” three organizations deemed “white separatist hate groups” by the Southern Poverty Law Center. A subsequent search of his home turned up bomb-making materials, ballistic vests, rifles, ammunition and a personal journal of combat tactics.

Putrid Waters Maxine Waters, the most vicious racist and socialist in the U.S. Congress. John Perazzo

There are many worthless deceivers from both major parties in the U.S. Congress ⸺ individuals whose principal talent is to screw over the American public while enriching themselves and basking obscenely in the glow of the political limelight they crave even more than life itself. But no one better fits this description than Los Angeles-based Congresswoman Maxine Waters, who has been secreting her special brand of racist, anti-American bile into the House of Representatives for more than a quarter of a century.

In recent months, Waters has experienced something of a resurgence in her popularity among leftists. In honor of her 79th birthday this Tuesday, for instance, Elle magazine lauded Waters not only as “a beacon of hope” in “these dark times,” but also as “a pop culture icon” who is “telling it like it is to anyone who has sense enough to listen.” MSN.com crowed: “It’s Rep. Maxine Waters’ birthday and the whole Internet is celebrating.” And TheRoot.com ran a puff piece titled “The Making of Auntie Maxine,” stating that “we love her” because she “says what many black women are thinking,” she “will not bow down to anyone,” and “time and time again she has fought against racism, white supremacy, white mediocrity, and misogyny.”

What the Left particularly loves about Maxine Waters lately, are her relentless, seething, theatrical professions of hatred for President Trump. Indeed, destroying Donald Trump’s presidency and having him removed from office in disgrace is mostly what she lives for nowadays. When Waters boycotted Trump’s inauguration on January 21, 2017, she explained her reasoning as follows: “I don’t honor him, I don’t respect him, and I don’t want to be involved with him.” In an appearance on MSNBC the following month, Waters called President Trump and his associates “a bunch of scumbags.” At a large rally two months ago in Los Angeles, she called for Trump’s impeachment: “He is not my president. He is not your president…. I’m saying, impeach 45. Impeach 45!” (Trump is the 45th U.S. President.) And at the annual ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans in early July, Waters revisited this same theme: “I am taking off the gloves. I don’t honor him, I don’t respect him, and I am not going to tolerate him. I am going to do everything I can do to get him impeached.”

Then, very recently, in a discussion about the multiple felonious leaks that have surfaced in recent months about President Trump and his associates ⸺ including transcripts of Trump’s private phone conversations with other world leaders ⸺ Waters proudly affirmed that she is “so glad” that the leakers are “telling us what’s going on,” adding: “I welcome the leaks. I welcome the information. That keeps us focused on him [Trump] and talking about what is wrong with him.” And for good measure, Waters vowed that “when we finish with [the impeachment of] Trump, we have to go and get” Vice President Mike Pence as well. “He’s next.”

Fidel and the Many Other Communists in Maxine’s Life

In stark contrast to her undiluted contempt for President Trump, Waters had a remarkable affinity for the late Fidel Castro, the longtime Communist dictator, mass murderer, and overseer of the island gulag known as Cuba. That would be the same Fidel Castro who tried very hard to provoke an intercontinental nuclear war between the U.S. and the Soviet Union; the same Fidel Castro who, according to Humberto Fontova, “jailed and tortured political prisoners at a higher rate than Stalin during the Great Terror” and “murdered more Cubans in his first three years in power than Hitler murdered Germans during his first six”; and the same Fidel Castro whose most infamous ally, Che Guevara, once boasted that if he and Castro would have had the opportunity, “we would have fired [nuclear missiles] against the very heart of the U.S., including New York,” because “the victory of socialism is well worth millions of atomic victims.”

But none of these things ever bothered Maxine Waters nearly as much as Donald Trump’s character flaws and political agendas bother her today. How do we know this? Because on September 9, 2000, Waters was among the throng of starstruck leftists who greeted and honored Fidel Castro during his visit to Harlem’s Riverside Church. “Viva Fidel!” the congresswoman shouted jubilantly as the dictator soaked up the adoration. As Castro himself put it: “I came to Harlem because I knew it was here that I would find my best friends.” Best friends like Maxine Waters.

Hong Kong Protest Leader Joshua Wong Sentenced to Six Months in Jail Sentence effectively disqualifies activist from running for office in the next five yearsh By Natasha Khan

HONG KONG—A student icon of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement was effectively disqualified from running for political office for five years after being jailed over protests in 2014 that drew world-wide attention.

The imprisonment of Joshua Wong, who became the skinny, bespectacled teenage face of the 79-day demonstrations demanding freer elections, is the latest move by authorities here to sweep away opponents of Beijing’s tightening control over the city. Since the protests, Mr. Wong has co-founded a new political party and has become a focal point for democracy campaigners, especially among the city’s youth.

The Court of Appeal sentenced Mr. Wong to six months in prison for taking part in an unlawful assembly in 2014, when protesters scaled security gates to access a square outside government headquarters, sparking what became known as the Occupy protests. Mr. Wong was originally sentenced to community service, which he completed, before the city’s Department of Justice filed a rare appeal, arguing that the sentence was too lenient. The harsher sentence means Mr. Wong is barred from running in local government elections until at least 2022.

Two other student leaders, Nathan Law and Alex Chow, were sentenced to eight months and seven months in prison, respectively.

Hong Kong authorities are increasingly using the legal system to silence dissent, having successfully disqualified six other pro-democracy legislators in a separate case over oath-taking, damaging the bloc’s ability to veto legislation.

The moves pave the way for controversial laws to be enacted on national security, compulsory patriotic education for schoolchildren, and, for the first time, allowing mainland Chinese laws to be enforced in a new train station for a high-speed rail line connecting Hong Kong to the mainland.

“Beijing and the Hong Kong Secretary for Justice are licking their chops at the moment,’’ said Jerome A. Cohen, director of the U.S.-Asia Law Institute at New York University. “Of course they will be “political prisoners … Their actions were political, and so was the government’s prosecution.’’

Mr. Wong and his two fellow student protest leaders “were convicted not because they exercised their civil liberties but because their relevant conduct in the protest broke the law,’’ a spokeswoman for the Department of Justice said in an email. “There is absolutely no basis to imply any political motive on the part of the Department of Justice in this case.’’

Mr. Wong, who turns 21 in October, rocketed to fame in his teens by organizing a 2012 rally that led the government to shelve plans to introduce a pro-China curriculum in Hong Kong schools.

During protests that paralyzed city streets in 2014, Mr. Wong was one of the first to camp out on highways and was a fiery voice at nightly rallies. That year, he was also on the cover of Time Magazine—the week he turned 18—as “The Face of Protest.”

The Palestinian Authority is a Genocidal Terrorist Entity and Should be Treated as Such by Guy Millière

The PLO became the first terrorist organization to have a seat at the UN and diplomatic representation in a Western country.

Daniel Pipes suggested measures to move the conflict in a constructive direction without causing major conflagration: require the Palestinian Authority (PA) pay for all damages inflicted by terrorists, including a very high price for each stolen life; burying the dead terrorists without returning them to their families; severely limiting access to West Bank territories ruled by the PA; banning PA leaders from entering Israeli airports if they make inflammatory remarks and each time there is anti-Israeli violence, or even asking them to use Jordanian airports from now on.

Why not tell European leaders that the Palestinian Authority is still a genocidal terrorist organization? Why not ask them how they can agree to finance in the Middle East what they claim to reject with horror in Europe?

The latest slaughter in the land of Israel took place in Halamish, Samaria, on July 21. A Palestinian stabbed to death a Jewish grandfather and two of his children. The grandmother was injured seriously. Countless similar attacks occurred in Israel in the recent and not-so-recent past.

Once again, thousands of Palestinian Arabs joyfully celebrated the murders. Some handed out candy.

The murderer was praised by the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas. If he had been shot to death, he would have instantly become a martyr of Islam. A street in Ramallah would be named after him. His picture would be posted in storefronts in the territories occupied by the Palestinian Authority and Hamas, and his family would be rewarded with a high “salary” for life.

The killer explained his crime by his willingness to “defend the al-Aqsa mosque” — which in fact was never attacked or even threatened by Israel. He did not hide his hatred for Jews. In his last Facebook post, he described them as monkeys and pigs.

His mother showed her pride for her son and his actions.

The murders followed Muslim riots after Israel installed metal detectors at the Temple Mount entrances, as exist in other mosques worldwide — in response to the murder of two Israeli policemen by Muslim terrorists who succeeded in bringing weapons to the site. The Israeli government did not prohibit access to the al-Aqsa mosque; it only wished to prevent further attacks. That a mosque could be used as a base for terrorist attacks seems to have been considered normal by the rioters.

Since then, the Israeli government decided to remove the metal detectors, as well as surveillance cameras that had been added later.

CAROLINE GLICK: PREPARING FOR THE POST ABBAS ERA

PLO chief and Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas scored a victory against Israel at the Temple Mount. But it was a Pyrrhic one.http://www.jpost.com/printarticle.aspx?id=501928

Days after the government bowed to his demand and voted to remove the metal detectors from the Temple Mount, Abbas checked into the hospital for tests. The 82-year-old dictator has heart disease and a series of other serious health issues. And he has refused to appoint a successor.

It is widely assumed that once he exits the stage, the situation in the PA-ruled areas in Judea and Samaria – otherwise known as Areas A and B – will change in fundamental ways.

This week, two prominent Palestinian advocates, Hussein Agha and Ahmad Samih Khalidi, published an article in The New Yorker entitled “The end of this road: The decline of the Palestinian national movement.”

Among other things, they explained that Abbas’s death will mark the dissolution of the Palestinian national identity. That identity has already been supplanted in Judea and Samaria by local, tribal identities. In their words, “The powerful local ties made it impossible for a Hebronite to have a genuine popular base in Ramallah, or for a Gazan to have a credible say in the West Bank.”

It will also be the end of the PLO and its largest faction, Fatah, founded by Yasser Arafat in 1958 and led by Abbas since Arafat’s death in 2004.

Fatah, they explain, has “no new leaders, no convincing evidence of validation, no marked success in government, no progress toward peace, fragile links to its original setting abroad and a local environment buffeted by the crosswinds of petty quarrels and regional antagonisms.”

One of the reasons the Palestinians have lost interest in being Palestinians is because they have lost their traditional political and financial supporters in the Arab world and the developing world. The Sunni Arab world, led by Saudi Arabia and Egypt, is now willing to publicly extol Israel as a vital ally in its struggle against Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood. The so-called Arab street is increasingly incensed at the Palestinians for monopolizing the world’s attention with their never ending list of grievances against Israel even as millions in the Arab world suffer from war, genocide, starvation and other forms of oppression and millions more have been forced to flee their homes.

As for the developing world, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s refusal to visit with Abbas during his recent visit to Israel marked the official end of the Third World’s alliance with the PLO.

After Abbas departs, Agha and Khalidi identify three key actors that will seek to fill the military and political void. First and foremost, the Palestinian security services (PSF) will raise its head. The PSF is heavily armed and has been trained by the US military. Agha and Khalidi argue reasonably that as the best armed and best organized group in the area aside from the IDF, the PSF will likely seize power in one form or another.

Turkish Education: Jihad In, Evolution Out by Burak Bekdil

Turkey has now become the first and only NATO member state that teaches “jihad” in its schools. Although the Turkish government claims that “jihad” means a “spiritual inner struggle for salvation,” the official Turkish dictionary defines it as a “war fought in the name of religion.”

“Why would a young man, indeed a young woman, would want to return to a country where there are 50,000 people in prison, including 200 journalists, opposition media is gagged, women are second class citizens, and where Darwin’s theory of evolution has been taken off academic curriculum because it contradicts teachings of Islam? To these bright young kids, returning to Turkey must appear like hopping on H. G. Wells’s ‘Time Machine’ and travelling back a few centuries.” — Fuad Kavur, London-based Turkish-British film producer.

Turkey’s Islamist strongman, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, draws such a rosy picture of his war-torn country that his audiences might think the world’s youth, in envy, should be flocking to Turkey to breathe an air of academic excellence and freedoms. On the other hand, however, he complains of a massive brain drain in the Muslim world, including Turkey, heading to the Western countries, which he explicitly despises. A gross contradiction? Just an Islamist’s usual ideological impasse.

In a recent speech, Erdogan said that the Muslim world has been losing students to the West in a brain drain, and that this intellectual emigration must be prevented:

“On top of that, we are transferring very serious amounts of money to Western countries for this. After these students complete their academic studies, we naturally expect them to return to their countries and serve their own people. But most of the time, those finishing their schools do not return to their homelands, but stay where they received education”.

Erdogan’s diagnosis is correct. According to Cumhuriyet, an independent Turkish daily newspaper, the number of Turkish students seeking study abroad has doubled every year since 2009. At Robert College in Istanbul, a private high school, 151 of 196 seniors recently applied to study abroad. And according to the state-run news agency Anadolu, some 90,000 Turkish students go abroad annually, and spend about $1.5 billion for education. Turkey ranks 11th among countries with students getting an education abroad, according to the World Bank. Top preferred education destinations include Britain, the United States, Malta, Canada, Australia and Germany — ironically, all of them non-Muslim countries. Turkey sends more students to the United States than any other European country.

At Robert College in Istanbul, a private high school, 151 of 196 seniors recently applied to study abroad. (Image source: Wikipedia)

That is hardly surprising in a country where average schooling is a mere 6.5 years. Qualitatively, too, education standards are extremely poor in Turkey. The results of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) education test have revealed some of the most pressing problems in Turkish education. According to the PISA findings in 2016, Turkey dropped from 44th place to 49th (out of 72 countries surveyed), compared to the last test in 2012.

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) found that the number of Turkish 15-year-olds who scored below average on the triennial PISA test is three times higher than the number of students who scored below average in more successful countries. Some 31.2% of Turkish students below 15 years of age underperformed in mathematics, sciences and reading. In contrast, only 10% of students in countries that neared the top of the list underperformed on math, sciences and reading. Between 2012 and 2016, Turkey’s ranking dropped from 43rd in science to 52nd, and from 41st in reading to 50th.

For Erdogan, however, education has hardly anything to do with science. In a 2015 speech, he boasted that since his government came to power in 2002, the number of “imam school” students had risen sharply from a mere 60,000 to 1.2 million.

Minimize Islamic Terrorism in America? Just Manipulate Statistics by A.Z. Mohamed

While Islamist terrorists have committed fewer attacks in America since 9/11 than “far-right-wing violent extremists,” they have killed more victims. — United States Government Accountability Office report, released on April 6, 2017. Titled “Countering Violent Extremism: Actions Needed to Define Strategy and Assess Progress of Federal Efforts”.

Both right-wing and Islamic extremists are the enemies of Western civilization; all must be investigated and penalized. The attempt by the Left to minimize the dangers of the jihadists among us is not only counter-productive; it is immoral.

Well before Donald J. Trump was elected to the U.S. presidency, many have been claiming that more Americans have been killed by “right-wing extremists” than by Islamic terrorists.

A study released in June 2015 by the New America Foundation on “Terrorism in America After 9/11” ostensibly gave credence to this assertion. Focusing on one graph in the study and the authors’ summary of the statistics – that the “death toll [from attacks since September 11, 2001] has been quite similar to other forms of political, and even non-political, violence that Americans face today” — a number of media outlets and progressive groups pounced on the data.

Referring to the New America Foundation findings, Time magazine’s Joanna Plucinska reported:

“Since 9/11, white right-wing terrorists have killed almost twice as many Americans in homegrown attacks than radical Islamists have… [During this period], 48 people were killed by white terrorists, while 26 were killed by radical Islamists.”

In March 2017, the self-described “multi-media network for the latest Progressive news, commentary and analysis,” The Ring of Fire, also referred to the New America Foundation study. In a program titled “Right Wing Extremist Have Killed More Americans than Terrorists,” broadcaster Farron Cousins said:

“In terms of people from Muslim countries coming to the United States committing any kind of act of terror, 50 people have died in the United States since 9/11 attacks. 254 have died since the 9/11 attack from right-wing extremists violence and acts of terror here in the United States.”

He went on to state that right-wing extremists “are killing five times more American citizens than anyone from any Muslim country… coming into the United States.”

More recently, on August 14, 2017 — two days after a deranged white supremacist killed a woman and wounded 19 other demonstrators in Charlottesville, Virginia — MSNBC also pointed to the New American Foundation study. The network’s Stephanie Ruhle announced, “Between 2001 and now, we have seen three times more deaths caused by right-wing extremists than Islamic terrorists.”

This repeated assertion is both disingenuous and politically motivated. Far more reliable is the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, released on April 6, 2017. Titled “Countering Violent Extremism: Actions Needed to Define Strategy and Assess Progress of Federal Efforts,” the report illustrates that while Islamist terrorists have committed fewer attacks in America since 9/11 than “far-right-wing violent extremists,” they have killed more victims.

Both right-wing and Islamic extremists are the enemies of Western civilization; all must be investigated and penalized. The attempt by the Left to minimize the dangers of the jihadists among us is not only counter-productive; it is immoral.