‘Barack Obama is really the president Richard Nixon always wanted to be. He’s been allowed to act unilaterally in a way that we fought for so many decades.”

So said George Washington University Law School professor Jonathan Turley on Fox News Channel’s Hannity program Tuesday night. Turley is no Clarence Thomas conservative. He is an avowed liberal, yet one who believes that government should obey the rule of law. That law is, supremely, the United States Constitution — which Turley both studies and teaches.

Turley is disturbed that Obama repeatedly speeds past federal law (narrowly) and the constitutional separation of powers (broadly) as he drives his agenda. This is frightfully clear, yet again, in the rapidly exploding controversy surrounding the Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl/Taliban-high-command swap.

“Even though one could agree with many of the policies — as I do — that this administration holds, the means that it is selecting are very troubling,” Turley lamented. “This president, once again, has said that he simply chose not to comply with federal law.”

Turley referred to Obama’s violation of Section 1035(d) of the 2014 National Defense Authorization Act — a federal statute that Obama signed. This law requires Obama to give Congress 30 days’ notice before releasing anyone from Guantanamo. Obama argues that he emancipated the “Taliban Dream Team” — as Senator Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) calls them — due to Bergdahl’s declining health. The 28-year-old soldier, however, departed Afghanistan in apparently decent shape and arrived at America’s military hospital in Landstuhl, Germany, in “stable condition.”


America’s Medieval Universities

Employment rates for college graduates are dismal. Aggregate student debt is staggering. But university administrative salaries are soaring. The campus climate of tolerance has utterly disappeared. Only the hard sciences and graduate schools have salvaged American universities’ international reputations.

For over two centuries, our superb system of American public and private higher education kept pace with radically changing times and so ensured our prosperity and reinforced democratic pluralism.

But a funny thing has happened on the way to the 21st century. Colleges that were once our most enlightened and tolerant institutions became America’s dinosaurs.

Start with ossified institutions. Tenure may have been a good idea in the last century to ensure faculty members free expression. But such a spoils system now encourages the opposite result of protecting monotonies of thought. In a globalized world where jobs disappear in an eye blink and professionals must be attuned to the slightest changes in the global marketplace, academics insist that after six years they still deserve lifetime guarantees of employment.

In the age of the Internet and global readerships, faculty promotion is still based largely on narrow publication in little-read, peer-reviewed journals. Many are often incestuous and have no bearing on enhancing faculty teaching skills.

Post-tenure review and peer evaluations have become pro forma quid pro quos among guild members. The result is a calcified professoriate that demands it alone can still live in the protected world of the 1950s.

Part-time teachers and graduate students are not so lucky. They are often paid less than half for the same work done by full-time faculty, in illiberal fashion that would be unacceptable at Walmart or Target.

Universities are the least transparent of U.S. institutions, defending protocols more secretive than those of the Swiss banking system. Few colleges publish the profile of students who were favored in the admission process through legacies, athletic prowess, or race and gender preferences. The result is that almost no one knows why one student gets into Yale or Stanford and another with a far more impressive academic record does not.


The president is recklessly derelict as commander-in-chief and studiously duplicitous in dealing with Congress.

Pardon me if I couldn’t care less whether Jeffrey Toobinthinks President Obama “clearly broke the law.” It is not at all clear that he did. Yes, it is clear that he ignored a statute that purports to trim his plenary commander-in-chief powers over the disposition of enemy combatants and his Article II supremacy over the conduct of foreign relations. But since a statute cannot amend the Constitution, it is not clear that the statute in question is constitutional.

But this is entirely beside the point.

The president has knowingly provided material support to terrorists. More importantly, he has replenished the enemy in wartime by giving the Taliban and Haqqanis back five senior, capable, rabidly anti-American commanders at a time when, as the president well knows, the Taliban and Haqqanis are still conducting violent jihadist operations to kill our troops. This is a shocking dereliction of duty.

Moreover, as I have been arguing, the Obama administration also flatly lied to Congress in representing last year that it would comply with the statute Obama has now flouted. A president has every right not to enforce a statute he believes in good faith is unconstitutional. He commits a profound breach of faith, however, when he announces he will comply with the statute and consult with Congress and then refuses to do so—precisely to deprive Congress and the public of the ability to mobilize against his objectionable policy of empowering our enemies.

In the IRS scandal, for nearly a year, the Obama administration was able to distract attention from its appalling abuse of power in harassing the president’s political opponents by encouraging an abstruse legal debate over whether Lois Lerner said enough in her opening statement to waive her Fifth Amendment privilege.

We’re now heading into the same feint. The president is recklessly derelict as commander-in-chief and studiously duplicitous in dealing with Congress. And we’re talking about a dubious 30-day notification statute? If you think Jeffrey Toobin has diagnosed to heart of the problem here, good luck.

Austria: Muslim Brotherhood’s New European Headquarters by Valentina Colombo

What is clear is that Austria’s “Law of Islam” of 1812 represents protection for Islamic organizations that no other European country has to offer.

Many Egyptian communities in Austria, however, do not define themselves as Muslim. They are completely opposed to political Islam, and are enormously worried about the presence of the Muslim Brotherhood.

The 1912 law might be delivering the most potent weapon of Islamic extremism at the expense of the majority of Austria’s Muslims — most of whom practice their religion as a part of life not as an instrument of power.

One reason for the possible relocation of the Muslim Brotherhood’s European headquarters from London to Graz, Austria, mentioned by The Daily Mail on April 12, might well be the inquiry, started by the British government in March, into the activities of the Brotherhood.

Ibrahim Munir, Secretary General of the Muslim Brotherhood and often referred to as the head of the Brotherhood in Europe, had said to the Anadolu news agency that he could not “imagine or accept leaving Britain for any other country.”

However, the satellite channel Al Arabiya reported, from a source linked to the Brotherhood, that in London a meeting had taken place in the presence of Mahmoud Hussein, the secretary general of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, during which those present had discussed not only the situation in Egypt and the appointment of 17 new leaders, but had also endorsed the decision to move their headquarters from London to Austria and three other European countries.

Even Khalid Sham’a, Egypt’s ambassador to Austria, confirmed to Al Arabiya that many leaders and members of the Brotherhood had moved to Austria, and noted that the main Egyptian community in Austria is located in Graz.

It appears that the European Muslim Brotherhood, in keeping with its pragmatic strategy of adjusting to contingencies, might be thinking of decentralizating.[1]

The enticement, however, that might really make Austria attractive to the Muslim Brotherhood, is its legislation. In 1912, Emperor Franz Joseph, as a result of the annexation of Bosnia-Herzegovina, as well as an attempt to integrate Bosnian soldiers in Imperial army, issued the so-called Islamgesetz [Law of Islam].


Why I am a Zionist
Because I am a Christian, many people assume it is my religious faith that is the primary motivation for my advocacy for Israel. But that is not the case.
Because I am a Christian, many people assume it is my religious faith that is the primary motivation for my advocacy for Israel. But that is not the case. Like all true Zionists, my strongest motives are more visceral, more mysterious than any creed or pledge. I am a Zionist because of my son, Taylor. His spirit and his struggle led me to the only people, the only nation on earth, that share the essence of both.

When Taylor was nine years old, a huge tumor was discovered in his pelvic dish. It was an especially insidious cancer, one in which tumors calcify, turning into bone, stabbing from the inside out. My immediate concern was not only for Taylor’s body but also for his spirit. Witty, curious and charismatic, he loved people and life. What good, I wrote to friends and family, if his body is healed but his spirit is crippled? Please, pray for both.

In the two years that followed, everyone prayed and fought and fixed their hopes on physical recovery. Almost no one did the same things for his spirit. And so Taylor and I became a team, fighting for each other’s inner man. Early on, I shaved my head. When he first saw the new look, Taylor deadpanned and said, “Now both of us are MIB’s. Kinda like the movie, Men In Black. Except we are Men In Baldness. You are Agent B and I am Agent T.”

Three months after diagnosis and initial treatment, his case was transferred to Herbert Schwartz, Vanderbilt’s chief of orthopedic oncology. When Taylor and I went for a consultation, Herb’s kindness was expected. It was, however, a kindness that did not preclude breathtaking clarity. I was warned about this. “It is because he’s Jewish,” several whispered. After months of patronizing prevarication, plain-speaking clarity was sunshine and fresh air. But the news we heard was dark. “The tumor has grown,” he said. “In order to remove it, I probably will have to remove the left of side of your pelvis and so, of course, your leg as well.”

When Schwartz left the room, we cried and prayed, then headed out the door. Passing by the surgeon and his retinue of residents looking up at scans upon a lighted wall, Taylor stopped them all and said, “Dr. Schwartz?” Every head turned. “If you do have to amputate my leg,” he continued, pausing for effect, “do you think you could get it stuffed so that I can hang it over my fireplace at home?” Turning with a grin, Taylor walked away.

Four days later I walked into surgical recovery. Vastly diminished but with the tumor removed, I did not know if Taylor knew the leg was gone. His eyes were shut. An oxygen mask blew on his face. Leaning down, I said, “Honey, I’m here; I love you.” He responded with a halting rasp, “Now… I should… be able… to get… a really… good deal… on shoes. At least 50 percent off.” Just a few days later, he accepted an invitation to speak to first year medical students. That afternoon he hopped up on a treadmill and using armrests, walked. In less than six weeks he was climbing trees. “It’s easier on one leg,” he explained. “I can get places where I could not get with two.”

Taylor’s body was diminished but his spirit was enhanced, radically enhanced. In spite of heartbreaking pain, shocking loss and eventually death itself, Taylor always rejected despair, always chose life. For my part and more often than not, I fought. I challenged our doctors, our culture, our religion and our God.

One Fall day, eighteen months into Taylor’s war with cancer, a war his body was losing, my Christian congregation held a prayer meeting. It began with at least thirty minutes of “praise and worship” music. I did not sing along. When asked to speak, I stood and said, “Right now, God is my Opponent. Like Jacob, He insists I wrestle with Him. And so I do, I do.” Everybody squirmed. Almost everybody; one man smiled. Taylor’s Jewish surgeon, Herb Schwartz, was there. Afterward, he shook my hand, looked me in the eye and with a sympathetic twinkle said, “Nice speech.” He was the only one who understood.

LOUIS RENE BERES: From Athens to Jerusalem: A Journey in Strategic Wisdom

For Israel, nuclear weapons and doctrine are absolutely necessary, but they are not sufficient.

When Pericles delivered his Funeral Oration in 431 BCE, the same year as the start of the Peloponnesian War, his oratorical perspective was plainly strategic. As recorded by Thucydides, an early Greek historian whose dominant focus was on a better understanding of military power, Pericles’ speech acknowledged that Athenian security must forever remain uncertain.

“What I fear more than the strategies of our enemies,” lamented the wise Athenian wartime leader Pericles, “is our own mistakes.”
More precisely, his oft-quoted words expressed a determinedly timeless apprehension: “What I fear more than the strategies of our enemies,” lamented the wise wartime leader, “is our own mistakes.”

Contemporary Jerusalem is not ancient Athens. Nonetheless, history is often kaleidoscopic, and despite unimaginable changes in science and technology, the most primal inclinations toward war and peace continue largely unaltered. On complex matters of military strategy, there is always considerable reshuffling and recombination of doctrine, but still no genuinely basic transformation of constituent “parts.”

To be sure, Pericles didn’t have to concern himself with nuclear weapons and nuclear war. Still, the core principles of offense and defense in warfare have remained pretty much unchanged. Later, Machiavelli said as much, when, in the Discourses, he reminded his early sixteenth-century readers that both strategic dilemmas and strategic solutions are endlessly repeating themselves: “We ought to consider,” commented Machiavelli, that “there is nothing in this world at present, or at any other time, but has and will have its counterpart in antiquity.”


On 6 June 1944 the Western Allies landed in northern France, opening the long-awaited “Second Front” against Adolf Hitler’s Germany.

Commanded by U.S. Army General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Normandy assault phase, code-named “Neptune” (the entire operation was “Overlord”), was launched when weather reports predicted satisfactory conditions on 6 June. Hundreds of amphibious ships and craft, supported by combatant warships, crossed the English Channel behind dozens of minesweepers. They arrived off the beaches before dawn. Three divisions of paratroopers (two American, one British) had already been dropped inland. Following a brief bombardment by ships’ guns, Soldiers of six divisions (three American, two British and one Canadian) stormed ashore in five main landing areas, named “Utah”, “Omaha”, “Gold”, “Juno” and “Sword”. After hard fighting, especially on “Omaha” Beach, by day’s end a foothold was well established.


Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force! You are about to embark upon a great crusade, toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty loving people everywhere march with you. In company with our brave Allies and brothers in arms on other fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.

Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped and battle hardened, he will fight savagely.

But this is the year 1944! Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of 1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats, in open battle, man to man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our home fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men. The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to victory!

I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full victory!

Good Luck! And let us all beseech the blessings of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.

— Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower

Time To Reward Poland For Its Friendship: Let Them Join The Visa Waiver Program by Fred Gedrich

President Barack Obama’s visit to Poland tomorrow is expected to demonstrate U.S. support for this strategically important and historical ally, in the wake of Russia’s aggressive actions against neighboring Ukraine. While Poles will certainly welcome the president’s visit, they will do so with some trepidation.

Obama has upset many Poles by, among other things, unilaterally canceling a negotiated missile defense deal – an action that pleased Russia but jeopardized Poland’s security; publicly referring to Nazi death camps in Poland as “Polish death camps” (for which he later apologized) during a White House ceremony intended to honor a Polish World War II resistance hero; and shunning Poland’s heroic Nobel Laureate and former president Lech Walesa for what his White House describes as him, “being too political.”

It won’t stop Russian regional aggression, but one thing President Obama can do to win the hearts of skeptical Poles is to fully commit the U.S. to getting Poland into the U.S. Visa Waiver Program. The program began in 1986 as a way to foster better relations with friendly countries by allowing their citizens to travel visa-free to the U.S. as tourists or on business for up to 90 days. 29 of 38 countries in this program are European, and there is a strong case for adding Poland.

National wealth, a high Human Development Index, and a low security risk are three important ingredients for gaining VWP status, and Poland scores well on each count. Since shedding communism 25 years ago, Poland has seen its economy dramatically grow to 22nd in the world at $814 billion. The 2013 United Nations Development Report classified Poland as a “very high” HDI country with its 76 years average life expectancy, 99 percent literacy rate for males and females, and $21,000 plus average annual income. And with its strong American ties, NATO membership, and participation in the Afghanistan and Iraq military coalitions, Poland clearly isn’t a security threat. Moreover, it has implemented and adopted all VWP-related security measures and information-sharing protocols asked of them by the U.S. government.

One would be hard-pressed to find a better U.S. ally and friend than Poland and its people. As America fought for its independence, it did so with major contributions from Polish generals Thaddeus Kosciusko and Casimir Pulaski. As the world faced the Cold War’s darkest days, it was two Poles, Pope John Paul II and Solidarity’s Lech Walesa, along with U.S. President Ronald Reagan and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, who served as the principal catalysts for leading tens of millions out of their communist enslavement and into the sunshine of freedom. Poles continued their tradition of standing beside their American friends in the 21st century by fighting and dying in Afghanistan and Iraq.


GOP candidates should be running for president, not just for greater celebrity.
Good for Rick Perry.

After a fairly disastrous first go at the White House, he’s gearing up for a second try. Over the weekend, he told Kasie Hunt of NBC News: “I was not prepared properly.” In 2012, he told CNN that the “idea you can just stroll in there and be in the mix and be successful, I think is a bit of a stretch. But, anyway, you live and learn.”

That’s a bit of an understatement. The last time around, Perry parachuted into the Republican primary right after the Iowa straw poll, effectively landing on the winner, Representative Michele Bachmann. She may have been the shortest-lived front-runner ever.

Things only went downhill from there. His recovery from back surgery clearly played a role — he was on pain medication and had trouble sleeping — but even so, he was a hot mess. He campaigned as if he was running for the job of president of Texas — and that’s when things were going well.

“It’s three agencies of government when I get there that are gone — Commerce, Education and the, um, what’s the third one there? Let’s see. Oh five — Commerce, Education and the um, um,” Perry rambled during a primary debate.

He’s lucky he’s not a horse, because they shoot them after stumbles like that.

I don’t say good for Perry because I’m endorsing him; I say good for him because he’s doing what he should have done the first time: his homework.

The Berlin Wall’s Shadow, Falling on China : Amity Shlaes

The fate of nations can turn faster than we anticipate — and experts are often the last to know.
The worst part of the zeitgeist is the sense of inevitability. We just have that feeling that it will all go along the same or get worse. As in some combo of Friedrich vs. Hayek and Peter Rabbit: “Lippity, lippity, not very fast, down the road to serfdom.” After President Obama comes President Clinton. After “Race to the Top” or “No Child Left Behind” comes “Common Core.” After Chinese autocracy at home comes the expansion of Chinese autocracy into obscure corners of Africa.

But the political direction of nations can turn faster than we anticipate. To recall that, look not at Tiananmen Square, whose anniversary is marked this month, but rather at another country where something happened 25 years ago: Germany. The toppling of the Berlin Wall was a greater event even than Tiananmen. Tiananmen, after all, left the “one child” policy and most of the rest of the apparatus of China’s government in place. The opening of the Brandenburg Gate and Checkpoint Charlie forever changed the political configuration of a continent. A big Communist country became un-Communist and disappeared into another country. One of the globe’s most feared powers, Germany, was restored to its old imposing scale. The rest of Europe rearranged itself as well. Yet if you scrutinize reports of Germany from the seasons and months before November 9, and the evening when the guards let the East Berliners through, you’ll find scant portent of the transformation.

Indeed, many articles in the papers argued that it was all going the other way, away from reunification. “Despite New Stirrings, Dream of One Germany Fades,” read the May 14, 1989, headline in the New York Times story by Serge Schmemann. Schmemann allowed that the conservative Bild Zeitung, a West Berlin paper, had polled East Germans and found that 80 percent of them desired reunification of East and West. But Schmemann simultaneously noted that the Western newspaper’s poll of voters in Communist East Germany was “unofficial,” and he commented, snidely, that East Germans’ desire for change might rest on the rather suspicious fact they were “constantly reminded how much better and freer life is in the West.” (Yes.) The Times author laid more weight on a poll by the much-respected West German firm Wickert, which showed that 70 percent of West Germans believed the Wall would still stand in 2000.

Also in the Times, a month later, in June, West German author Peter Schneider suggested that West Germans, especially, had grown used to the Wall and might take comfort in having it around forever. “I have a hard time understanding why our neighbors are so afraid that we West Germans will seize the first opportunity to sell out the Western alliance in exchange for ‘reunification,’” Schneider wrote, placing reunification inside sneer quotes. Germans had no interest in the German question, Schneider insisted. That was June 25. Other reporters deployed elaborate metaphors to depict some kind of complicated and unfathomable Euro-architecture that necessitated near-forever German division. Other writers simply proffered opinion: “Go Slow on Germany,” admonished the senior pundit of the Herald Tribune, Flora Lewis, in September 1989, a time when the anti-regime protesters were already coming together weekly at the Nikolaikirche in Leipzig. A cultural report in the Times featured photos of the Berlin Wall that made it look as monumental and timeless as the Parthenon.