Some of those now criticizing the program as illegal seem oddly uninterested in the laws they themselves helped write.

Considering that the now-abolished Central Intelligence Agency interrogation program adopted in the wake of 9/11 was intended to protect the U.S. from another deadly attack, it is stunning to hear those now criticizing the program issue the solemn reminder that “we are a nation of laws”—while devoting little attention to what was actually in those laws. Odder still, among the critics those who wrote the laws seem to devote the least attention to them.

Take, for example, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the prime mover behind last week’s release of a more than 500-page “ Executive Summary ” of the report by Democrats on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. She attaches her own six-page foreword, beginning with the dutiful assurance on the first page that the “horror” of the television footage of the 9/11 attacks “will remain with me for the rest of my life.” Thus credentialed, Sen. Feinstein proceeds to the task at hand: CIA personnel “decided to initiate a program” of “brutal interrogation techniques in violation of U.S. law, treaty obligations, and our values.” Setting aside for a moment the reference to “our values,” that statement is demonstrably false.

Laws are a technical business in which both terminology and chronology play a part. So if the law that criminalizes torture defines it in a certain way, that definition—and no more—is what it is, punditry and cocktail-party figures of speech notwithstanding.

In September 2001, there was but one law that defined torture, making it a crime to act with the intent to cause “severe physical or mental pain or suffering.” Severe physical pain or suffering is not defined. Severe mental pain or suffering is defined as “prolonged mental harm” resulting from any of four causes, including causing severe physical pain or suffering.


#ChanukahAction to End Police Violence is a national day of Jewish action in support of criminal justice reform and police accountability. So far actions have been planned in 15 cities, from Brooklyn to San Francisco, where Jews will come together to light the first Chanukah candle and proclaim their commitment to ending police violence against the Black community. I implore you to lend your voice and your feet to the new struggle for Black civil rights by standing up with the Jewish community to proclaim that Black Lives Matter.

Visit http://chanukahaction.org to find an event in your city or to find resources to help you plan your own action.
I am a serious guy and I am an activist. I suggest that you google Jan Poller MoveOn.

Do you support Abu Jamal?.

Did you like the new York protestors who yelled:

What Do we want? Dead Cops!
When do we want then? NOW!

Do you think cops get up in the morning and say to themselves “Where can I find a Black or Hispanic” to shoot?

Are you concerned about ISIS/ISIL/IS? How about the Taliban and Boko Haram? How about Nusrah and al Qaeda?

Are you in the least concerned about Hezbollah having 100,000 rockets in contravention to UN Resolution 1701 that ended one of the Lebanese wars? Do you, like Hillary Clinton, have empathy and understanding of Hamas?


Michael Doran, Douglas Feith, Daniel Gordis, Hillel Halkin, Meir Soloveichik and Ruth Wisse
This collection of brilliant and never-before-published essays by six of the most perceptive observers of Jewish and American life gives fresh insight into the personal, political, and religious character of one of Israel’s most remarkable and controversial figures.

Menachem Begin’s Zionist Legacy explains Begin’s “unabashed and unapologetic commitment to his people before any others”; the misunderstood relationship between Begin and his mentor Ze’ev Jabotinsky; why Begin was detested by his rival David Ben-Gurion; and the true role of Jimmy Carter in the process leading up to the Camp David Accords. And there’s lots more.

Available now from Mosaic Books in all major ebook formats. Forthcoming in hard-cover from the Toby Press in 2015. Published in collaboration with the Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought at Yeshiva University.
Release date

December 2014



Mornings at the Pentagon By JOSEPH L. GALLOWAY
Over the last 12 months, 1,042 soldiers, Marines, sailors and Air Force personnel have given their lives in the terrible duty that is war. Thousands more have come home on stretchers, horribly wounded and facing months or years in military hospitals. This week, I’m turning my space over to a good friend and former roommate, Army Lt. Col. Robert Bateman, who recently completed a year long tour of duty and is now back at the Pentagon. Here’s Lt. Col. Bateman’s account of a little-known ceremony that fills the halls of the Army corridor of the Pentagon with cheers, applause and many tears every Friday morning. It first appeared on May 17 on the Weblog of media critic and pundit Eric Altermanat the Media Matters for America Website.

“It is 110 yards from the “E” ring to the “A” ring of the Pentagon. This section of the Pentagon is newly renovated; the floors shine, the hallway is broad, and the lighting is bright. At this instant the entire length of the corridor is packed with officers, a few sergeants and some civilians, all crammed tightly three and four deep against the walls. There are thousands here.

This hallway, more than any other, is the `Army’ hallway. The G3 offices line one side, G2 the other, G8 is around the corner. All Army. Moderate conversations flow in a low buzz. Friends who may not have seen each other for a few weeks, or a few years, spot each other, cross the way and renew.

Everyone shifts to ensure an open path remains down the center. The air conditioning system was not designed for this press of bodies in this area.

The temperature is rising already. Nobody cares. “10:36 hours: The clapping starts at the E-Ring. That is the outermost of the five rings of the Pentagon and it is closest to the entrance to the building. This clapping is low, sustained, hearty. It is applause with a deep emotion behind it as it moves forward in a wave down the length of the hallway.

A steady rolling wave of sound it is, moving at the pace of the soldier in the wheelchair who marks the forward edge with his presence. He is the first. He is missing the greater part of one leg, and some of his wounds are still suppurating. By his age I expect that he is a private, or perhaps a private first class.

Captains, majors, lieutenant colonels and colonels meet his gaze and nod as they applaud, soldier to soldier. Three years ago when I described one of these events, those lining the hallways were somewhat different. The applause a little wilder, perhaps in private guilt for not having shared in the burden … Yet.

Now almost everyone lining the hallway is, like the man in the wheelchair, also a combat veteran. This steadies the applause, but I think deepens the sentiment. We have all been there now. The soldier’s chair is pushed by, I believe, a full colonel.

“Behind him, and stretching the length from Rings E to A, come more of his peers, each private, corporal, or sergeant assisted as need be by a field grade officer.


1. The first Jews to set foot in North America arrived in New York as a
group of 23 in 1654.
2. Congregation Shearith Israel, founded in New York in 1654, was the first
synagogue in the colonies. It was the sole purveyor of kosher meat until
3. By the late 19th century, there were over 5,000 kosher butchers and
1,000 slaughterers in New York.
4. In 1902, the Beef Trust raised the price of kosher meat on the Lower
East Side from 12 to 18 cents per pound. After butchers’ boycotts proved
ineffectual, 20,000 Lower East Side women stole meat from kosher butcher
shops and set it on fire on the streets in protest. The Forward supported
their efforts, running the headline “Bravo, Bravo, Bravo, Jewish women!”
5. On March 25, 1911, the Triangle Shirtwaist fire claimed the lives of 146
garment workers, the majority of whom were Jewish immigrants. Reporting on
the tragedy, the Forverts wrote that ‘the disaster is too great, too
dreadful, to be able to express one’s feelings.”
6. When entertainer Al Jolson came to New York City at age 14, he held jobs
in the circus and as a singing waiter. Born to a cantor, Jolson’s career
took off when he began performing in blackface.
7. In 1903, the Lower East Side Chinese and Jewish communities formed an
unlikely partnership when Chinese organizers put on a benefit for Jewish
victims of the Kishinev pogrom, raising $280.

Technologies for Biometrics and Wearables are Accelerating Change By Chuck Brooks


This is a guest post by Chuck Brooks, Vice President/Client Executive for DHS at Xerox

Our increasingly hyper-connected world is becoming even more connected and personal with the emerging generation of technologies for “wearables.” Advanced sensor technologies are being miniaturized, made flexible, and attachable to our bodies. These new technologies and their biometric components will have significant implications on the future of health, security, and how we conduct commerce.

Most of us are familiar with Google Glass, Samsung Galaxy Gear and Apple’s iWatch and the impact these technologies have already made on the wearable market. The factor forms for wearables extend beyond glasses and now include wrist bands, rings, contact lenses, ear pods, and clothing. Embedded chips are a possibility (perhaps a frightening one from a privacy perspective as we will be our own personal tracking device) in the not so distant future.

Human/computer interaction started more than forty years ago when Xerox’s PARC (Palo Alto Research Center) created the mouse driven Alto computer. Now it is estimated that will be over 604 million users of wearable biometrics by 2019 according to Goode Intelligence. Combined with the booming smartphone market (that is already reaching billions of people), networked mobility take on a new meaning from a data analytical perspective. Computers, data and sensors will be everywhere and be the internet of everything…..read more at site


Yesterday it was Sydney. Today it is Peshawar. Yesterday a coffee shop. Today a school. Yesterday a lone gunman. Today a gang of them. If anybody wondered about the global and diffuse nature of the challenge that Islamic fundamentalism poses, the last 24 hours have given another demonstration of the problem.

Yet what is amazing, after all these years, is how unconcerned many people remain with working out what is going on. How could the Taliban have chosen to attack a school in Peshawar? Why did Boko Haram steal the Nigerian schoolgirls? Why did the Sydney attacker fly that flag? Why do Isis fly theirs? The Western world in particular seems to be made up of not only exceptionally slow, but actually reluctant, learners.

This week there is a new book out by the renowned scholar of Islam, Patrick Sookdeo (I have had the honour of writing the introduction). It is called ‘Dawa: the Islamic strategy for reshaping the modern world’. It not only lays out what Islamic fundamentalists around the world are trying to do, but how a coalition of Muslims and non-Muslims can come together to defeat them. It is, I would suggest, fairly vital reading to educate people about what is going on. But that brings me to one other point.

A considerable – and growing – number of people worldwide now recognise that Muslims and non-Muslims are involved in a war against the literalists and fundamentalists within the Muslim religion. It is a war that is likely to continue for many decades to come, and the propaganda war, as much as the actual war, matters.

Which brings me to this morning’s Daily Mail front page. Last week the Democrat party in the US issued a deeply uninformed and damaging report which they appear to have hoped would damage the previous Republican administration. In fact this wildly misjudged report turns out simply to have done what anybody outside the Democrat high command could have predicted it would do – and done incalculable damage to the United States.

Jihadist Child-Sacrifice – on The Glazov Gang

Jihadist Child-Sacrifice – on The Glazov Gang
Unveiling the mindset of the Islamic terrorists who killed over 130 children in Peshawar.


BY Moshe Phillips, president and Benyamin Korn , chairman of the Religious Zionists of America, Philadelphia.

During an old controversy involving Martin Indyk, then the U.S. ambassador to Israel, one Israeli political official invoked a particularly nasty historical analogy. Indyk reportedly had been contacting individual Israel cabinet ministers to demand they support making more concessions to the Arabs. “Ambassador Indyk needs to be reminded that he is not the British High Commissioner,” said the chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

Not many Israelis today remember when a foreign power ruled Eretz Yisrael through the proclamations of an absolute dictator, nor how oppressive it was to live under his rule. But prior to Israel’s independence in1948, Jews living in the Holy Land could not shape their own fate. Outside powers – in this case, the British ruling authorities – called the shots, with their High Commissioner deciding what was best for the Jews.

Martin Indyk also acts as if he knows what’s best for the Jews. As President Obama’s special envoy, he declared in an August 2010 New York Times op-ed that Israel should “withdraw from at least 95 percent of the West Bank and accept a Palestinian capital in Arab East Jerusalem.”

In one job or another, Indyk has spent the last two decades trying to bring this about. First as part of the State Department’s Middle East team under President Bill Clinton, then as ambassador to Israel (twice), and more recently as President Obama’s envoy to the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, Indyk has always pursued his goal of forcing Israel to make concessions to the Palestinians.

Indyk’s passion for his imposed solution is so strong that he has at times even come close to justifying Palestinian violence against Israel. On May 2 of this year, an unnamed “senior U.S. official” told the Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronot: “The Palestinians are tired of the status quo. They will get their state in the end – whether through violence or by turning to international organizations.” Three days later, the Israeli daily Haaretz reported that Indyk was the official who said it.

That remark recalled a statement made by “a senior U.S. official” to the Jerusalem Post on June 22, 1997, that recent Palestinian rioting against Jews was “a plausible safety valve” which “lets the Palestinians vent their anger.” At the time, Indyk was the U.S. ambassador in Israel.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus: Report Determines That November Mosque Fire was Caused by Electrical Malfunction- Not “Jewish Settlers”

A mosque in the disputed territories town of Mughayer near Ramallah suffered severe fire damage back in November. The word out immediately was that Jews were responsible. Not just any Jews, of course, but those evil extremist “settlers.”

The mayor of Mughayer, Faraj al-Nassan, told the Associated Press that the Jews were to blame for the fire.

“Only Jewish settlers would do this,” he said.

He neglected to mention any other possibility, including the actual one, the electrical malfunction of a space heater.

Nassan made the statement to the AP, which dutifully reported it, and then the unverified rumor ossified firmly into fact, showing up in dozens of media sources throughout the world.

Yahoo! News posted an AP photograph of an Arab man holding a heavily burned Quran, describing the fire as having resulted from “an attack” against the mosque which “ignited a fire that destroyed its first floor.” The Yahoo! caption included the village’s mayor “blaming Jewish settlers for the attack.”

It wasn’t only an understandably distraught town mayor who blamed the Jews. Reports from villagers blaming Jews were not mere suppositions, they were stated as fact.

The fire in Mughayer took place during a spate of terrorist attacks against Israelis. Many media outlets happily invoked a standard trope known as the “cycle of violence,” where harm to anyone or anything on both sides are presented as similarly motivated acts of hatred.

But as the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) revealed on Tuesday, Dec. 16, an investigation of the Mughayer mosque fire conducted by Israeli firefighters determined that “the cause was actually an electrical malfunction.”