Islam, Not Christianity, is Saturating Europe by Giulio Meotti

Jihadists seem to be leading an assault against freedom and against secular democracies.

Sunni Islam’s most prominent preacher, Yusuf al Qaradawi, declared that the day will come when, like Constantinople, Rome will be Islamized.

It is Islam, not Christianity, that now saturates Europe’s landscape and imagination.

According to US President Trump’s strategic advisor Steve Bannon, the “Judeo-Christian West is collapsing, it is imploding. And it’s imploding on our watch. And the blowback of that is going to be tremendous”.

The impotence and the fragility of our civilization is haunting many Europeans as well.

Europe, according to the historian David Engels will face the fate of the ancient Roman Republic: a civil war. Everywhere, Europeans see signs of fracture. Jihadists seem to be leading an assault against freedom and against secular democracies. Fears occupy the collective imagination of Europeans. A survey of more than 10,000 people from ten different European countries has revealed increasing public opposition to Muslim immigration. The Chatham House Royal Institute of International Affairs carried out a survey, asking online respondents their views on the statement that “all further migration from mainly Muslim countries should be stopped”. In the 10 European countries surveyed, an average of 55% agreed with the statement.

Mainstream media are now questioning if “Europe fears Muslims more than the United States”. The photograph used in the article was a recent Muslim mass prayer in front of Italy’s monument, the Coliseum. In echoes of the capture of the great Christian civilization of Byzantium in Constantinople, Sunni Islam’s most prominent preacher, Yusuf al Qaradawi, declared that the day will come when Rome will be Islamized.

Hundreds of Muslims engage in a mass prayer service next to the Coliseum in Rome, on October 21, 2016. (Image source: Ruptly video screenshot)

Do civilizations die from outside or inside? Is their disappearance the result of external aggression (war, natural disasters, epidemics) or of an internal erosion (decay, incompetence, disastrous choices)? Arnold Toynbee, in the last century, was adamant: “Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder”.

“The contemporary historian of ancient Greece and ancient Rome saw their civilisations begin their decline and fall, both the Greeks and the Romans attributed it to falling birth rates because nobody wanted the responsibilities of bringing up children,” said Britain’s former chief rabbi, Lord Sacks.

Thousands Protest Corruption in Russia in Challenge to President Vladimir Putin Opposition activist Alexei Navalny detained in Moscow By Nathan Hodge

MOSCOW—Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of cities across Russia on Sunday to protest official corruption in the most significant challenge to President Vladimir Putin in years.

Sunday’s marches were called by leading opposition figure Alexei Navalny, who was detained during the protest in Moscow, according to supporters and local media.

“There are things in life worth being detained for,” Mr. Navalny said on Twitter.

Crowds chanting “Russia without Putin” and carrying placards decrying official corruption converged on Pushkin Square in the Russian capital, where they faced off with ranks of Interior Ministry police in riot gear.

Police officials told news agency Interfax that 7,000 to 8,000 people participated and around 500 were arrested. The radio station Echo of Moscow, drawing on unofficial estimates, put the number of participants in Moscow much higher.

The demonstrations are a sign of public dissatisfaction in Russia despite the consistently high approval ratings Mr. Putin receives in opinion surveys.

In Washington, the State Department sharply condemned the Russian crackdown, including the arrest of Mr. Navalny, other protesters, human rights observers and journalists.

“The Russian people, like people everywhere, deserve a government that supports an open marketplace of ideas, transparent and accountable governance, equal treatment under the law, and the ability to exercise their rights without fear of retribution,” State Department spokesman Mark Toner said. CONTINUE AT SITE

Is the Palestinian issue a core cause of Mideast turbulence? Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger

Video#38:; Entire online seminar:

Irrespective of – and unrelated to – the Palestinian issue, the Middle East is boiling, firing the 14-century-old Sunni-Shia intra-Muslim confrontation, exacerbating intra-Arab violence in Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia, Bahrain and threatening to explode in every Arab country. The Arab Tsunami, which has erupted independent of the Palestinian issue, has been leveraged by Iran’s Ayatollahs, in order to advance their supremacist, megalomaniacal goal of dominating the Persian Gulf, the Middle East and beyond, notwithstanding the Palestinian issue, which has never played a substantial role in shaping the stormy intra-Arab and intra-Muslim relations and the Middle East agenda.

2. Contrary to Western preoccupation with the Palestinian issue, the Middle Eastern agenda dramatically transcends the Palestinian issue, which is neither the cruxof the Arab-Israeli conflict, nor a crown-jewel of Arab policy-making and nor a core cause of the 1,400-year-old turbulence, violent intolerance, instability, unpredictability, subversion and terrorism in the Middle East. The Palestinian issue is completely irrelevant to the tectonic Arab Tsunami, which has engulfed the Middle East from the Persian Gulf to Northwestern Africa.

3. The intensifying Arab Tsunami, which erupted in 2010, causing the deaths of hundreds of thousands people, the dislocation of millions, and threatens to topple every sitting Arab regime, has exposed the myth of the supposed centrality of the Arab-Israeli conflict, in general, and the Palestinian issue, in particular. None of the recent – as well as past – domestic and regional upheavals in the Middle East has been directly, or indirectly, related to the Arab-Israeli conflict or the Palestinian issue. Contrary to conventional “wisdom,” the Palestinian issue has always been a side – and not a main – dish on the tectonic Middle East menu, which has been dominated by intra-Muslim and intra-Arab explosive ingredients.

4. No Arab country has ever considered the Palestinian issue a top priority, warranting shedding blood, sweat or tears. Arab policy-makers have always talked the talk on behalf the Palestinian issue – in order to divert attention away from critical domestic and regional failures – but have never walked the walk, financially or militarily. They adhere to the Arab saying: “On words one does not pay custom.”

5. The top priority for Arab leaders, personally and nationally, is homeland security and countering-terrorism, in the face of intensifying, clear and present domestic and regional lethal threats. Therefore, they are preoccupied with the Muslim Brotherhood – the largest transnational Islamic terror organization – and additional Islamic terror organizations. The Muslim Brotherhood – not the Palestinian issue – has plagued Egypt since 1928. The Muslim Brotherhood, and its ideology, nurtured the Taliban, Al Qaeda, ISIS and other Islamic terror organizations.

6. Therefore, President Al-Sisi has followed in the footsteps of President Sadat, who resisted President Carter’s pressure to place the Palestinian issue at the center of the 1977-79 Israel-Egypt peace process. Sadat was concerned about the destabilizing impact of a Palestinian entity, as evidenced by the subversive track record of Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas in Egypt (1950s), Syria (1966), Jordan (1970), Lebanon (1970-1983) and, worst of all, in Kuwait (1990).

7. Moreover, in 2016, President Al-Sisi – just like all pro-US Arab leaders in Jordan, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States – expands intelligence, counter-terrorism and overall geo-strategic cooperation, operationally and technologically with Israel, a global role-model of counter-terrorism, in defiance of Palestinian opposition. They believe that when smothered by the lethal sandstorms of Islamic terrorism and Iran, one must leverage the mutually-beneficial ties with Israel, rather than be preoccupied with the Palestinian tumbleweed.

8. Iran’s policy of megalomaniacal supremacy, terrorism, subversion and hate-education, and its determination to become a nuclear power, are driven by the 2,000-year-old ambition to dominate the Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean, Middle East and beyond, and not by the Palestinian issue.

9. The disintegration of the Arab Middle East, especially Iraq, Syria, Libya and Yemen, is a derivative of the endemic, tribal, religious, ethnic, geographic and ideological intra-Muslim fragmentation, not the Palestinian issue.

10. The next video will connect the Middle East dots.

After the Storm – A Review By Marilyn Penn

The first thing you’ll notice about After the Storm is the height of its star, Hiroshi Abe; in a country where the average male is 5′7″ this man is a towering 6′2″ and looks like Gregory Peck – both wonderful attributes. Except that this casting interferes with the plot. We’re asked to accept this character as a down and out writer, unable to summon the money he owes his short ex-wife for child support and reduced to borrowing from his short sister and stealing from his shorter mother. But all we can think is – are you kidding me? this guy could get a job in a minute as a model or movie star earning way more money than he did with his novel. He’d be plucked right off the sidewalk by ten different modeling or movie agents before he walked three blocks in downtown Tokyo. Imagine casting George Clooney as Willy Loman and you’ll understand the problem.

As I tried to overcome this stumbling block, I looked around the theater and saw the man next to me fast asleep, two women chatting, several others having the need to organize their handbags. It was then that I realized that I too must have nodded off as I couldn’t recollect seeing something that was clearly a prior occurrence. This is a very quiet film about some very dull people with very ordinary life problems. You need a Chekhov to make something out of soporific material and writer/director Hirokazu Kore-eda is not that man. In a year in which LION featured a spectacular screen debut for irresistible young Sunny Pawar, you can’t interest audiences in a reticent boy of similar age (short) who has no screen personality As he and his father decide to weather the eponymous typhoon in a playground, we are forced to acknowledge that this is too misguided to be a good bonding moment What if a tree branch came whirling towards them to smack the very tall man in the head? The old mother comes across best of the bunch but since that’s saying so little, I can’t praise her performance either. Miss this unless you’re having serious trouble napping………………

Gorsuch’s Foes Embarrass the Senate Democrats’ attacks on his past decisions are so formulaic that they read like a recipe. By Orrin G. Hatch

During last week’s confirmation hearing for Judge Neil Gorsuch, some of my Senate colleagues heard from teachers who were using the occasion as an educational tool. Indeed, Supreme Court confirmation hearings can be a civics lesson for the nation. They offer unparalleled insight into the Constitution and the proper role of judges in our system of government.

I have participated in 14 of these hearings during my four decades on the Senate Judiciary Committee. The nominees are typically highly talented lawyers and judges. The Senate’s role is to probe their qualifications and judicial philosophies. At its best, the process is removed from the pettiness of partisan politics.

I take this duty seriously. Although I am a committed conservative, I have voted for the Supreme Court nominees of both parties—even those I might not have chosen myself—as long as I have been assured of their fitness for office. I helped shepherd through President Clinton’s nominees, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer. Both had shown themselves to be honorable, capable jurists with reputations for careful, nonideological work on federal appeals courts.

What sort of civics lesson were the American people treated to last week? Judge Gorsuch’s performance was outstanding. Enduring more than 20 hours of questioning over two days, he displayed an impressive command of the law and an intellect befitting someone with his stellar credentials. He showed that he understands the proper role of a judge in our system: to apply, not make, the law. Throughout, his demeanor was serious, thoughtful and humble. These qualities have defined his judicial service for the past decade and will serve him well on the Supreme Court.

In stark contrast was the astonishing treatment Judge Gorsuch received from many of my Democratic colleagues. Whatever their motivation—be it the outcome of President Obama’s lame-duck nomination during last year’s election, an unwillingness to accept the November results, or the desire for judges to push a liberal political agenda—they have apparently decided to wage a desperate, scorched-earth campaign to derail this nomination, no matter the damage they inflict along the way. We are now watching the confirmation process through the funhouse mirror.

Consider the Democrats’ demand that Judge Gorsuch answer politically charged hypotheticals about future cases. For decades, Supreme Court nominees of both parties have rightly refused to comply with such demands. To offer an advisory opinion is inconsistent with the Constitution, which gives judges the authority to make a decision only within the legal and factual context of an actual case. Judges should be neutral arbiters, and asking them to prejudice themselves raises serious due-process concerns for future litigants, who deserve the opportunity to make their arguments in full.

When Judge Gorsuch politely explained his inability to answer such questions—often while giving an extensive rationale for demurring—he was lambasted by some of my Democratic colleagues. Yet these senators have gladly embraced the very same answer from nominees in the past. It is hard not to interpret their attacks as hypocrisy.

Consider also the way some of my colleagues misrepresented Judge Gorsuch’s record. Their attempts were so formulaic that they read like a recipe: First, cherry-pick one of the judge’s opinions in which a sympathetic victim lost. Next, gloss over the legal issues that informed his decision in the case. Then fail to mention that his opinions were often joined by colleagues appointed by Presidents Clinton and Obama. After that, ignore the many times that Judge Gorsuch ruled in favor of similar litigants. End with a wild assertion about how Judge Gorsuch must be biased against “the little guy.”

The Tax Reform Damage The GOP health debacle makes pro-growth reform more important but also much harder.

Republicans are consoling themselves that after their health-care failure they can move on to tax reform, and they have little choice. The large complication is that the Freedom Caucus’s ObamaCare preservation act has also made a tax bill much harder politically even as it makes reform more essential to salvaging the Trump Presidency and GOP majorities in 2018.

President Trump campaigned on breaking Washington gridlock, increasing economic growth and lifting American incomes. The health collapse undermines those pledges. The legislative failure is obvious, but less appreciated is that House Speaker Paul Ryan’s reform included a pro-growth tax cut and major improvements in work incentives. The 3.8-percentage-point cut in taxes on capital income would have been a substantial increase in after-tax return on investment, nearly half of the eight-point cut in the capital-gains tax rate that helped propel growth after 1997.
Now that’s dead, and so is the replacement for the especially high marginal-tax-rate cliff built into ObamaCare’s subsidies. These steep tax cliffs as subsidies phase out are a major hindrance to work, as University of Chicago economist Casey Mulligan has shown. The Ryan bill would have been a significant boost to economic growth and labor participation. The critique that it would not have helped “Trump voters” was willfully false coming from the left and uninformed on the right.

This lost opportunity now makes tax reform even more important as a growth driver, but the health-reform failure also hurt tax reform in another major way. The Ryan bill would have reduced the budget baseline for tax reform by some $1 trillion over 10 years. This means that suddenly Republicans will have to find $1 trillion more in loopholes to close or taxes to raise if they want their reduction in tax rates to be budget neutral.

That means picking more fights with industries that fear they’ll be tax-reform losers. Take the irony of Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas. He trashed the House health bill far and wide, but he also represents Wal-Mart, which hates the House GOP’s border-adjustment tax proposal that would raise some $1 trillion in revenue to pay for lower tax rates. By helping to kill the Ryan health bill, Mr. Cotton has now killed $1 trillion in tax and spending cuts that would have made it easier to pass a tax reform without the border-adjustment fee. We look forward to seeing the Senator’s revenue substitute.

Law Takes a Holiday And anarchy follows. By Victor Davis Hanson *****

In the 1934 romantic movie Death Takes a Holiday, Death assumes human form for three days, and the world turns chaotic.

The same thing happens when the law goes on a vacation. Rules are unenforced or politicized. Citizens quickly lose faith in the legal system. Anarchy follows — ensuring that there can be neither prosperity nor security.

The United States is descending into such an abyss, as politics now seem to govern whether existing laws are enforced.

Sociologists in the 1980s found out that when even minor infractions were ignored — such as the breaking of windows, or vendors walking into the street to hawk wares to motorists in a traffic jam — misdemeanors then spiraled into felonies as lawbreakers become emboldened.

A federal law states that the president can by proclamation “suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.” Yet a federal judge ruled that President Trump cannot do what the law allows in temporarily suspending immigration from countries previously singled out by the Obama administration for their laxity in vetting their emigrants.

In the logic of his 43-page ruling, U.S. District Court Judge Derrick Watson seemed to strike down the travel ban based on his own subjective opinion of a president’s supposedly incorrect attitudes and past statements.

Some 500 “sanctuary” cities and counties have decided for political reasons that federal immigration law does not fully apply within their jurisdictions. They have done so with impunity, believing that illegal immigration is a winning political issue given changing demography. In a way, they have already legally seceded from the union and provided other cities with a model of how to ignore any federal law they do not like.

The law states that foreign nationals cannot enter and permanently reside in the United States without going through a checkpoint and in most cases obtaining a legal visa or green card. But immigration law has been all but ignored. Or it was redefined as not committing additional crimes while otherwise violating immigration law. Then the law was effectively watered down further to allow entering and residing illegally if not committing “serious” crimes. Now, the adjective “serious” is being redefined as something that does not lead to too many deportations.

The logical end is no immigration law at all — and open borders.

There is a federal law that forbids the IRS from unfairly targeting private groups or individuals on the basis of their politics. Lois Lerner, an IRS director, did just that but faced no legal consequences.

Perhaps Lerner’s exemption emboldened New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof to invite IRS employees via social media to unlawfully leak Donald Trump’s tax returns. Later, someone leaked Trump’s 2005 tax return to MSNBC.

There are statutes that prevent federal intelligence and investigatory agencies from leaking classified documents. No matter. For the last six months, the media have trafficked in reports that Trump is under some sort of investigation by government agencies for allegedly colluding with the Russians. That narrative is usually based on information from “unnamed sources” affiliated with the FBI, NSA, or CIA. No one has been punished for such leaking.

Trump Haters Call for Presidential Assassination No facet of the First Amendment shields those who promote the murder of the president of the United States. By Deroy Murdock

Never in my 53 years have I seen people so casually and cavalierly advocate the murder of the president of the United States. Trump haters are eager to make assassination great again.

Such comments are not just muttered by demented vagrants as they relax on subway grates. Those who say such things too often are prominent, powerful people with platforms from which they publically spew their potentially lethal venom.

Calvin Broadus, Jr., alias Snoop Dogg, recently released a music video for a rap song called “Lavender” in which he aims a handgun right at the skull of a clown dressed as President Donald J. Trump. Mr. Dogg — who pled no contest to felony gun possession in April 2007 — pulls the revolver’s trigger. Out pops a red and white flag that reads: “Bang.”


Imagine the national collapse that would have ensued if, say, a country-music star released a video in which he leveled a shotgun at an Obama-like clown, only to have sawdust fly from the barrel.

In response to muted criticism of Mr. Dogg’s video, rapper Clifford Joseph Harris Jr., a.k.a. T.I., called Trump a “F***ing Tangerine Tanned Muskrat scrotum skin, Lacefront Possum fur Wig wearing, Alternative fact, Atomic Dog diarrhea face a** man!!!!”

Also from the relentlessly tasteful world of rap “music,” Big Sean’s freestyle number contributes this to the national debate:

I know Jay proud of me, he put this ’round my neck/ And I might just kill ISIS with the same icepick/ That I murder Donald Trump in the same night with.

Madonna, the global pop star whose albums have sold 306 million copies, erupted at the January 21 Women’s March in Washington, D.C.: “Yes, I’m angry. Yes, I am outraged. Yes, I have thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House.”

Meanwhile, Adam Pally, star of Fox TV’s Making History, told TMZ that if he could travel through time and spend an hour with anyone, “I’d have to kill Trump or Hitler.”

Soon after Trump was elected, British journalist Monisha Rajesh remarked, “It’s about time for a presidential assassination.”

Matt Harrigan former CEO of PacketSled, a San Diego-based cybersecurity company, was eerily specific about his desire to whack Trump.

“I’m going to kill the president. Elect,” Harrigan posted on Facebook last November. He added that he was “getting a sniper rifle and perching myself where it counts. Find a bedroom in the whitehouse that suits you m*****fucker. I’ll find you.”

FISAgate: The Question Is Not Whether Trump Associates Were Monitored It’s whether it was done abusively. By Andrew C. McCarthy —

In light of how controversial the matter has become, it’s unfortunate to find so much uniformed commentary, especially in cable-TV land, about foreign intelligence collection and its so-called minimization protocols — particularly, the guidelines about revealing, or “unmasking,” the identities of Americans whose communications are “incidentally” intercepted.

The question arises because of reporting — most recently, the coverage of disclosures last week by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes — that the communications of figures associated with the Trump campaign were intercepted “incidentally” by U.S. intelligence agencies because they had some interaction with people connected in some way to foreign powers, principally Russia. The Trump associates subjected to such intelligence-agency monitoring certainly include former national-security adviser Michael Flynn, who was intercepted when speaking with Russia’s ambassador to the United States. In addition, the intercepted individuals probably include at least three others: Paul Manafort, who ran the Trump campaign until being ousted in July (when reports surfaced of payments to him by the former government of Ukraine — a Putin puppet regime); and two others, Roger Stone and Carter Page, who had informal connections to the campaign (but longstanding ties of varying degree to Trump and Manafort).

Nunes’s disclosures further suggest that the communications of others associated with Trump’s campaign (perhaps even Trump himself) were also intercepted. During the press conference, a reporter asked, Nunes, “Was the president [i.e., Trump] included in that incidental collection — his communication?” Nunes responded, “Yes.” Based on the little that has been reported, the interception and handling of these communications seems more disturbing because, according to Nunes, they have nothing to do with any known government intelligence investigations of Russia. Unless there is some legitimate connection to foreign activities, the specter of political spying hovers.

The reported intelligence collection efforts raise four separate questions that are too often conflated in the commentary:

1) Should the communications of Trump associates (all of whom are U.S. citizens, so far as we know) have been intercepted in the first place?

2) Regardless of whether the interception was proper, should the identities of the American citizens have been “masked” in order to protect them from, among other things, being smeared as subjects of government investigations?

3) Regardless of whether masking was called for, should the fact that the American citizens’ communications had been collected and reviewed in connection with investigations — presumably, intelligence investigations, not criminal probes — have been disclosed throughout the “community” of U.S. intelligence agencies?

4) Should that fact have been publicly disclosed, including in leaks to the media? (Spoiler alert: As my use of “leaked” indicates, public disclosure is a major no-no. In fact, it’s a felony no-no.)

Islam and the Jihad in London It’s not non-Western. It’s anti-Western. By Andrew C. McCarthy

It was a careful choice of words, Bernard Lewis being nothing if not careful. In 2004, the West audibly gasped when its preeminent scholar of Islam famously told the German newspaper Die Welt,“Europe will be Islamic by the end of the century,” if not sooner.

Listen carefully. He did not say that Muslims will be the majority population in what is still recognizably Europe. No, Professor Lewis said “Europe will be Islamic.”

We are not talking about Muslims here. We are talking about Islam. Lots of individual Muslims desire peaceful coexistence, even assimilation. But Islam’s aim is to prevail. So, yet again this week, Lewis’s foreboding has been brought to the fore by a jihadist mass-murder attack, this time in London.

As we go to press, five innocent people are dead after Khalid Masood, a terrorist acting on unambiguous scriptural commands to war against non-Muslims, rammed his rental Hyundai SUV into dozens of pedestrians on Westminster Bridge, many of them tourists taking in the iconic views of Parliament. About 50 people suffered injuries, some of them grave, so the death toll may yet rise.

Masood, a burly 52-year-old weightlifter with a long criminal record that included vicious stabbings, then crashed the car through the gate at Westminster Palace, home of the West’s most venerable democratic legislature. He alighted brandishing two long knives, which he used to kill Keith Palmer, a police officer who, pursuant to British policy, was unarmed despite being assigned to provide security at one of the world’s foremost terror targets. Masood was finally shot dead by a protection officer attached to England’s defense minister.

There immediately began the ritual media pondering over Masood’s motive. Yes, what could it possibly have been?

I’m going to stick with the patently obvious.

Masood was born as Adrian Russell Ajao on Christmas Day, 1964, in Kent county, just outside London. His 17-year-old single mother remarried two years later, and he was known as Adrian Elms (his stepfather’s surname) until converting to Islam when he was about 40. Prior to that point, while fathering three children with his wife, he had several arrests, some for violent attacks. During at least one of the resulting stints in prison, like many inmates, he began indoctrination into Islam.