When it involves Israel, the international community’s hearing is notoriously selective yet never capricious or random. There is method in the apparent arbitrariness of what does and does not compellingly impress the self-appointed adjudicators of all that’s virtuous and/or villainous in our setting.

Israel’s own largely left-dominated media – forever engaged in advocacy journalism and tendentiously promoting hyped humbug – isn’t remarkably better.

The obliging etiquette of de rigueur enlightenment demands that Israel’s culpability be accentuated and amplified in all circumstances. Simultaneously, any Arab belligerence must by the niceties of politically correct protocol be disguised, discounted and ultimately denied. Stonewalling must be ascribed exclusively to the uncool Jewish state.

The hardly unforeseeable upshot is that nowhere was much interest shown in Ramallah figurehead Mahmoud Abbas’s latest song and dance. Deprived of resonance, the story of his two recent meetings in Paris with US Secretary of State John Kerry expired virtually unnoticed.

This means that few news-consumers, either at home or abroad, can conceivably be expected to realize that Abbas has just delivered three major no’s to Kerry, who is gung-ho on imposing an instant all-encompassing final solution to the Mideast problem – one that has eluded lesser minds than his for the past century-and-a-half.

Since his own ambitious nine-month deadline is fast nearing, Kerry wishes to wow the benighted natives with at least a fuzzy outline of a deal. Abbas has, nonetheless, inconsiderately demolished key components of Kerry’s fragile framework but he’s unlikely to get much flak for his intransigence.

Essentially this arises from the trendy predisposition to blame Israel for anything and absolve the Arab side of everything. This means that few pro forma informed individuals anywhere would at all discover that Abbas has walloped Kerry with the following three strident rebuffs:

Britain: Islamists Create Climate of Fear to Curb Free Speech by Soeren Kern

“My intention was to carve out a space to be heard without constantly fearing the blasphemy charge, on pain of death.” — Maajid Nawaz, Liberal Democratic Party candidate for Britain’s Parliament.

“The media’s vaunted concern for minority welfare is at direct odds with its indifference to the minority within Islam that is trying to reform its orthodoxy’s disgraceful attitude to blasphemy—a minority that is gravely endangered and in need of friends.” — Abhishek Phadnis, free speech activist, London School of Economics.

Muslim fundamentalists in London have threatened to behead a fellow British Muslim after he posted an innocuous image of Mohammed and Jesus on his Twitter account.

The death threats against Maajid Nawaz, a Liberal Democrat Party candidate for British Parliament, add to a growing number of cases in which Islamists are using intimidation tactics to restrict the free speech rights of fellow Muslims in Europe. (Efforts to silence non-Muslims are well documented.)

Nawaz—a former member of the Islamist revolutionary group Hizb ut-Tahrir and co-founder of the Quilliam Foundation, a London-based counter-extremism think-tank—on January 12 posted on Twitter a cartoon of Mohammed and Jesus greeting one another (“Hey” and “How ya doin’?”) with the caption: “This Jesus & Mo @JandMo cartoon is not offensive&I’m sure God is greater than to feel threatened by it الله أكبر منه”.


Watching time run out at a dangerous pace, U.S. President Barack Obama has decided to take a more hands-on role in foreign policy. The impending peril he fears is not an Iranian atom bomb, however.

No, in spite of the Islamic Republic’s refusal to halt its nuclear program, Obama is as hopeful about the latest round of talks in Vienna as is European Union negotiator Catherine Ashton.

“We had three very productive days during which we have identified all the issues we need to address to reach a comprehensive and final agreement,” Ashton said last week.

This was music to White House ears. Now it could ignore Iran’s about-face following its signing of an interim agreement with the West in November. Indeed, before the ink had dried on the document, Iran was denouncing Obama’s interpretation of it.

Imagine the U.S. president’s relief, then, that he had not caved to pressure from Congress to step up sanctions against Tehran, and that a whole new series of talks — the first of which will take place on March 17 — was in the cards.

What, then, is causing the American president to grab the reins out of Secretary of State John Kerry’s hands with such urgency?

The Demons Unleashed: WWI as the Seedbed of the 20th Century : Robert Wistrich

WWI shattered what was an orderly and stable world order • The Holocaust, the Bolshevik Revolution and the rise of Fascism would have been almost impossible before the slaughter on the Somme, Isonzo and in the East • Reflections on the reverberations of the Great War which still resonate today

Almost exactly a century ago with the outbreak of the First World War, a chain of destruction, revolutionary upheavals, political chaos, and mass deaths was set in motion which permanently changed the face of Europe and of the wider world. At the end of the bloodiest conflict hitherto known in world history, four empires had collapsed: the Hohenzollern Reich in Germany, the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy which then ruled much of East-Central Europe, the Ottoman Empire in the Middle East, and the multi-national Tsarist state in Russia. By 1918, new states like Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, and the Baltic countries had achieved independence in their place, while Poland had been restored.

Imperial Germany, Austria, and Hungary were severely amputated, while Romania expanded. In the Near East, Great Britain and France carved up the spoils of war, while the seeds of future Arab-Jewish confrontations in Palestine were being sown. On the ruins of Tsarism, the Bolsheviks swiftly conquered power in what would become the Soviet Union, while militant fellow-Communists sought to emulate their revolutionary coup elsewhere. Meanwhile, the United States, having tilted the balance of forces in 1917 in Europe, established itself for the first time as a major player in international affairs


Thus far the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan has weathered the storm that has swept across the Middle East since the beginning of the year. But the relative calm in Amman is an illusion. The unspoken truth is that the Palestinians, the country’s largest ethnic group, have developed a profound hatred of the regime and view the Hashemites as occupiers of eastern Palestine—intruders rather than legitimate rulers. This, in turn, makes a regime change in Jordan more likely than ever. Such a change, however, would not only be confined to the toppling of yet another Arab despot but would also open the door to the only viable peace solution—and one that has effectively existed for quite some time: a Palestinian state in Jordan.
Abdullah’s Apartheid Policies

The majority Palestinian population of Jordan bridles at the advantages and benefits bestowed on the minority Bedouins. Advancement in the civil service, as well as in the military, is almost entirely a Bedouin prerogative with the added insult that Palestinians pay the lion’s share of the country’s taxes.
Despite having held a comprehensive national census in 2004, the Jordanian government would not divulge the exact percentage of Palestinians in the kingdom. Nonetheless, the secret that everyone seems to know but which is never openly admitted is that Palestinians make up the vast majority of the population.

In his 2011 book, Our Last Best Chance, King Abdullah claimed that the Palestinians make up a mere 43 percent. The U.S. State Department estimates that Palestinians make up “more than half” of Jordanians[1] while in a 2007 report, written in cooperation with several Jordanian government bodies, the London-based Oxford Business Group stated that at least two thirds of Jordan’s population were of Palestinian origin.[2] Palestinians make up the majority of the population of Jordan’s two largest cities, Amman and Zarqa, which were small, rural towns before the influx of Palestinians arrived in 1967 after Jordan’s defeat in the Six-Day War.

In most countries with a record of human rights violations, vulnerable minorities are the typical victims. This has not been the case in Jordan where a Palestinian majority has been discriminated against by the ruling Hashemite dynasty, propped up by a minority Bedouin population, from the moment it occupied Judea and Samaria during the 1948 war (these territories were annexed to Jordan in April 1950 to become the kingdom’s West Bank).

The Palestinians’ Real Enemies by Efraim Karsh

Middle East Quarterly

For most of the twentieth century, inter-Arab politics were dominated by the doctrine of pan-Arabism, postulating the existence of “a single nation bound by the common ties of language, religion and history. … behind the facade of a multiplicity of sovereign states”;[1] and no single issue dominated this doctrine more than the “Palestine question” with anti-Zionism forming the main common denominator of pan-Arab solidarity and its most effective rallying cry. But the actual policies of the Arab states have shown far less concern for pan-Arab ideals, let alone for the well-being of the Palestinians, than for their own self-serving interests. Indeed, nothing has done more to expose the hollowness of pan-Arabism than its most celebrated cause.
Denying Palestinian Nationalism

Emir Faisal ibn Hussein of Mecca became the effective leader of the nascent pan-Arab movement. He placed Palestine on the pan-Arab agenda by falsely claiming that he and his father and brother had been promised the country in return for their anti-Ottoman uprising.

Consider, for instance, Emir Faisal ibn Hussein of Mecca, the celebrated hero of the “Great Arab Revolt” against the Ottoman Empire and the effective leader of the nascent pan-Arab movement. Together with his father and his older brother Abdullah, Faisal placed Palestine on the pan-Arab agenda by (falsely) claiming that they had been promised the country in return for their anti-Ottoman rising. In January 1919, he signed an agreement with Chaim Weizmann, head of the Zionists, supporting the November 1917 Balfour Declaration on the establishment of a Jewish national home in Palestine and the adoption of “all necessary measures … to encourage and stimulate immigration of Jews into Palestine on a large scale.”[2] Yet when the opportunity for self-aggrandizement arose, in March 1920, he had himself crowned king of Syria “within its natural boundaries, including Palestine.” Had either option been realized, Palestine would have disappeared from the international scene at that time.


“I hate you!” is an epithet that has been uttered by virtually every child, at some point, toward their parent, especially towards those who are rigorous when it comes to discipline. Parents who enforce rules do not do so because they want to punish their child; they do so to teach him or her right from wrong, and to point out that such rules allow households to operate more smoothly. Teachers do not discipline students because it makes them feel good, but for the betterment of the student. Rules are to be obeyed. Police in New York did not “stop and frisk” because they were targeting specific groups; they did so because they were trying to lower incidences of crime. Obviously, at all levels there are exceptions – bad parents, bad teachers and bad police – but the majority has the interests of their charges in mind. The role of a disciplinarian is not to be popular, but to allow society to function. If they do their job well, they will be respected.

We establish governments so that civilized people can live in harmony, to bring order to what otherwise would be chaos. It is why free people choose to live under a code of laws. When rules are known, understood to be fair and unbiased and enforced we feel safe, and freedom can flourish. While we don’t always like to admit it, dishonesty and corruption are common characteristics, perhaps not of most people, but certainly of a sizable minority. Why else lock our offices and stores at night, our homes when we are away and our cars when we leave them even for a few minutes? As disillusioning as it might be, there is no Eden beyond the garden gate.

The world is like the family, the school, the village or the nation only on a larger scale. Our mutual interests are global. Commerce requires that ship lines be secured, that airspace be protected, that truck load-factors be adhered, that cyberspace be secure, and that international laws be obeyed. The desire to do harm is omnipresent. Someone, or some entity, must assure that goods and people can move freely. For forty-five years following World War II, that role fell to two nations, the United States and the Soviet Union – in an unwritten “balance” of power. Threats of mutual destruction kept the fingers of leaders of both nations off the button that would have led to total annihilation. However, one country represented totalitarianism and darkness; the other, democracy and freedom. When the Soviet Union collapsed, some, like Francis Fukuama, predicted “the end of history.” While Professor Fukuama was wrong and history did not end, the world was fortunate that the United States won.

“If wishes were horses, beggars would ride” is an old English proverb that it is useless to wish for something impossible. Man has never lived in peace. All men are not good. Many are evil. The world has changed from the Cold War days when we knew who the enemy was. Threats now come from smaller rogue nations, governed by heartless dictators whose only desire is power, and from stateless terrorists aided by rogue nations. Some of the former now have nuclear weapons. The assuredness of mutual destruction is not meaningful to them as their stake in the current global economy is small. The latter have no stake in the world as it is, so the death of a suicide bomber is considered an honor. They believe that the giving of their life to their cause is noble – that forty virgins await them. Thus threats are more difficult to discover and stop, making them more lethal, and more probable.


Revelations about North Korea’s systematic oppression, abuse and terror assault decency. Has anyone considered what the American role was in leaving the brutal Kim dynasty in charge of the hapless North? Please read this column from 2008.

Ruth King: The Legacy of an Unfinished War

When President Franklin Delano Roosevelt wrote to the survivors of fallen soldiers in Word War II, these were his words:

“He stands in the unbroken line of patriots who have dared to die so that freedom might live, and grow and increase its blessings. Freedom lives and through it he lives in a way that humbles the undertakings of most men.”

This past Memorial Day, in a leafy town in Connecticut, where soldiers, sailors, veterans and their families and many townspeople gathered for a tribute to the town’s fallen heroes, I was struck by the number of octogenarians who were veterans of the largely forgotten and unfinished Korean War which cost so many lives and accomplished so little in bringing freedom and its blessings.

Korea, a unified and independent nation since the seventh century, was occupied and annexed by Imperial Japan in 1910 after a succession of wars with China (1894-95) and Russia (1904-05). In the aftermath of World War ll, Korea was freed from the Japanese who surrendered in Seoul in 1945. However, acceding to Stalin’s demands for “buffer zones” in Asia, the nation was divided by the 38th parallel into the People’s Republic of (North)Korea and the Republic of (South)Korea, to be administered by the Russians and the Americans respectively.

There were continuous simmering conflicts between both Koreas caused by South Korea’s resistance to the enforced Communism of the northern regime run by then 33-year-old Kim Il Sung (the father of North Korea’s present dictator) whose patrons were Stalin and Mao Tse-Tung. In fact, thousands of North Korean troops fought on Mao’s side in the Chinese Civil War. When those battle hardened troops returned to North Korea, Kim Il Sung “volunteered” them along the 38th parallel, and escalated provocations from border skirmishes to combat and ultimate invasion of the Republic of South Korea on June 25, 1950.

Secretary of State Dean Acheson persuaded President Truman to defend South Korea, reversing earlier reluctance to enter into another conflict so soon after World War II. The United States prepared to deploy the Seventh Fleet of the U.S. Navy in the Taiwan Strait and send massive air and naval power to the area. Ground troops were committed on June 30th, despite the reluctance of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who were concerned about stretching American defenses. The draft, still in place, increased the numbers of active duty troops to roughly 700,000 Army and 90,000 battle-ready Marines.

Only two days after the invasion, on June 27th, at the urging of the United States, the UN Security Council voted in favor of armed resistance to North Korea. UN support for the defense of South Korea enabled Truman and Acheson to gain public support for U.S. intervention. Although the United States commenced the war under the auspices of the United Nations with contingents of troops from Turkey, England Canada and Australia it was really America’s war.

In July 1950, World War II hero General Douglas MacArthur was given command of U.S. troops in Korea. Despite his initial assessment of an easy victory, the North Korean Army delivered a series of humiliating losses and retreats to the United States Army and drove south to the nation’s capital Seoul.


Soros and Saudi Arabia Finance a Non-Profit War in Israel Posted By Daniel Greenfield

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[Edwin Black will be speaking about his new book, Financing the Flames, to the Wednesday Morning Club in Beverly Hills on March 11, 2014. For more info, click here.]

Many books have been written about the financing of war, but Edwin Black’s latest book is about the financing of peace. That would seem like a positive theme, except that Black reveals that the financing of peace is really the financing of war.

Edwin Black has a history of writing investigative reports about the financing of conflict and Financing the Flames: How Tax-Exempt and Public Money Fuel a Culture of Confrontation and Terror in Israel is firmly in that tradition. Black picks up where he left off with his investigation of the Ford Foundation’s bigoted Anti-Israel shenanigans at Durban to look at the left’s financing of the conflict in Israel.

Israel is a small country and most Israeli Jews and Arabs already know that the conflict is stirred up by interested parties. They know that rocks don’t just get thrown randomly at soldiers and confrontations between Jewish and Arab villages are often staged by interested parties who don’t even live there.

The conflict was always externally encouraged, whether it was the British and the Nazis playing spy games or Iran and the Soviet Union funneling money and instructions to terrorists, but the perpetuation of the conflict has interwoven a mesh of conflict profiteers into the country, from hordes of stringers and journalists looking for a conflict photo or terror interview to sell, and over to the networks of non-profit organizations stirring up violence on an even larger scale and for even uglier motives.

In Defense of the Elastic Clause of the Constitution Posted By J. Christian Adams

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Reprinted from PJ Media.

If college students listened to Mark Levin or Rush Limbaugh, they would receive a better American history education than they are getting from their professors. I recently spoke at Emory University, where one student defended all of President Obama’s unconstitutional actions by invoking the Elastic Clause of the Constitution.

Citing the Elastic Clause could indeed justify a wide range of administration actions, except for one problem – it doesn’t exist.

But you couldn’t tell that to the student at Emory University who came to my speech last week on Obama’s abuses of power. He persisted in defending the actions through the Elastic Clause, as if the be-all, end-all provision was common knowledge.

From the sound of it, the Elastic Clause must be common knowledge in faculty lounges.