BasicsProject.org Well, bravo to the mainstream media – at least the Conservative mainstream media – for finally putting two-and-two together in understanding the role that political correctness plays in the ongoing conflict with violent jihadists and fundamentalist Islam. To say that they showed up “fashionably late” to the party is borderline sarcastic. Nevertheless, the subject […]
The administration’s Boston explanations don’t add up.
Unlike you, federal government officials are immune from charges of fraud. The executive branch, vested with all of the government’s prosecutorial authority and discretion, is not going to investigate its own operatives for carrying out its own mendacious policies.
That is the story of last week’s Boston Marathon bombing and the frantic efforts of the bombers, the brothers Tsarnaev, to evade capture, shoot it out with police (two of whom they killed), and — we’re now told — detonate more bombs in Times Square.
The Times Square non-attack is quite interesting. The specter of it, projected in the immediate wake of the Marathon murders and maimings, is horrific . . . so horrific that the government, in leaking this tidbit from its botched interrogation of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, knew that news media were certain to lead their broadcasts with it. The press would never wonder why they, and thus we, were being told about it.
But why were they told? Remember, the Times Square bombing not only never happened, it never came close to happening. It was, at most, a passing jihadist fantasy, one that the jihadists in question peremptorily dismissed as implausible. The threat was no more real than those that regularly stream out of Islamic-supremacist mosques and, just as regularly, go studiously unreported.
Mind you, there is nothing inappropriate about government officials’ speaking about matters on the public record — such as the allegations lodged in criminal complaints. But the Times Square non-attack is not mentioned in the complaint filed against Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. In fact, the complaint includes no information from Tsarnaev’s interrogation.
Yet somehow the airwaves are now full of startling revelations from his Miranda-aborted 16-hour post-arrest interview, including not least his confession, and, of course, his assurance, as Allah is his witness, that no one other than he and his Svengali older brother — and certainly no foreign Islamic terrorist organization — had anything to do with their terror spree.
Strange, isn’t it? We are governed by leftists given to finger-wagging about their commitment to due process and the rule of law — they’re not like those bad old warmongering Bushies. Still, here we are in the post-arrest phase of the civilian prosecution the administration was hell-bent on commencing — the phase when due process obliges government officials to remain mum about non-public investigative information that could taint the jury pool and undermine the defendant’s right to a fair trial — and we’re being inundated with stunning confession evidence.
Remember, this is the same crowd that labels the Fort Hood massacre “workplace violence” and won’t honor its victims with Purple Heart medals. To do so, they sniff, might prejudice the objectivity of the trial of a jihadist mass murderer who has publicly announced he’d like to plead guilty. Now, though, in Tsarnaev’s case, government agencies are leaking like sieves.
Because you are being softened up. Steered by its Gitmo Bar veterans and Lawyer Left compass, the Obama administration is executing a massive national-security fraud: the farce that the jihad against America can be judicialized, that civilian-court processes are a better answer to enemy warfare than are combat protocols.
The central subject of this issue of the Faculty Forum is an event which recently took place in the United Kingdom. Ronnie Fraser, a freelance mathematics lecturer, brought a claim of harassment before the Employment Tribunal against the University and College Union, the UCU. As he wrote in his personal statement of March 28, 2013, the issue was one of antisemitism and discrimination. “I believe,” he wrote “that the many witnesses we called were able to provide evidence to the tribunal of an intolerable atmosphere over a number of years and that the UCU did nothing to stop these intellectually anti-Semitic acts taking place.” (It should be noted that according to the thinking of modern peace studies, the integration of this type of hostility into a society’s institutions is a form of structural or indirect violence, which paves the way for open violence.) The distinguished advocate, Anthony Julius of the law firm Mishcon de Reya, represented Mr. Fraser.
In its judgment of March 22, the Employment Tribunal found that “the Claimant’s complaints of unlawful harassment are not well-founded … the Claimant’s complaints of unlawful harassment are … outside of the Tribunal’s jurisdiction … [and] accordingly, the proceedings are dismissed.” This outcome was a setback for Ronnie Fraser and for the Jewish community of the UK. Further, this judgment has international implications which are of great concern.
The tribunal had rejected Fraser’s case “as an attempt to shut down debate on Israel.” Although it is not immediately apparent, the core issue here is one of definition, the definition of the word: “antisemitism.” It should be noted, for example, that the UCU had posted the claim on a private listserv that millions of dollars from the failed Lehman Brother’s Bank were transferred to Israel. Effectively, by defining antisemitism down, the Tribunal did not have a problem with this type of statement and took issue with Fraser for even raising it.
For his part, Ronnie Fraser based his position on the “EUMC working Definition of Antisemitism” [Europ
Into the fray: The unilateral two-state initiative endorsed by INSS this week is clearly not a ‘creative’ pro-peace measure but a demonstrably anti-settler one.
The uncontested absurdities of today are the accepted slogans of tomorrow. They come to be accepted by degrees… by dint of constant pressure on one side and constant retreat on the other – until one day when they are suddenly declared to be the country’s official ideology.
– Ayn Rand, 1965
O, who can hold a fire in his hand; By thinking on the frosty Caucasus? Or cloy the hungry edge of appetite; By bare imagination of a feast? Or wallow naked in December snow; By thinking on fantastic summer’s heat?
– From William Shakespeare’s Richard II
I am appalled. Just how long will politically biased claptrap be allowed to masquerade as serious policy research?
When I wrote last week’s column, “The coming canard: “Constructive unilateralism,” I was unaware that, this week, the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) would hold its sixth annual conference in Tel Aviv. Traditionally titled “Security Challenges of the 21st Century,” the focus this year was billed as “Creative Ideas for Israel’s Changing Strategic Environment.”
The speaker line-up was undeniably impressive, with an array of well-known figures from Israel and abroad – politicians, senior military officers and government officials, media personalities, academics and policy analysts.
The program spanned a range of worthy topics that extended beyond purely military and security spheres, including social, economic and diplomatic matters as well.
On some issues the recommendations made, and conclusions drawn, seemed sensible and well-grounded – although I did puzzle over why they may merit the description “creative.”
Thus for example, I found myself endorsing the findings of the team dealing with the question of how to contend with the threat of a nuclear Iran, which urged the US to opt for “strengthening the credibility of the military alternative,” remarking that “the Iranian leadership does not really feel threatened. This impairs the effectiveness of the diplomatic alternative.”
Likewise I tend to concur with the policy prescription for Israeli decision-makers: “…
if all options have failed, and the government of Israel has to choose between an Iranian bomb and the bombing of Iran, it should choose the option of bombing Iran….”
But when it comes to the Palestinian issue, things differ dramatically. Indeed, here the only “creative” suggestion is complete – and completely counterproductive – capitulation.
Poor political science
Readers will recall that last week I warned that comprehensive, coordinated and concerted efforts are being initiated to promote a nonsensical notion, perversely dubbed “constructive unilateralism” (hereinunder CU).
In broad strokes, CU advocates declare a priori – and independently of any reciprocal measure from the Palestinians – that Israel should:
• Renounce any claims to sovereignty beyond a pre-determined line (roughly the present route of the separation barrier, i.e.virtually the entire area of Judea-Samaria);
• Remove all Jewish civil presence across this line either by financial inducements (by offering monetary compensation for evacuation), economic strangulation (by ceasing any development
of Jewish communities in the area) or physical abandonment (by transferring control to the Palestinian Authority); and
• Leave the IDF deployed in areas evacuated, and in territory over which Israel concedes it has no claims to sovereignty.
Clearly, were these measures to be implemented, the political reality that would prevail in the evacuated territories would be largely similar to that which prevailed in pre-2000 South Lebanon, and we all remember how that ended – with the hasty retreat of the IDF and the empowerment of Hezbollah.
Thus, any suggestion to replicate those realities – only this time on a much a larger scale and closer to Israel’s coastal megatropolis – is based on atrociously poor political science and grievous political amnesia. Or worse, a surreptitious and sinister hidden agenda. Read on…
Seamless symbiosis – a reminder
I pointed out that the entity publicly promoting the CU-initiative is an organization called Blue and White Future (B&WF), which describes itself as “a nonpartisan political movement… funded by private donors in Israel… and elsewhere.”
There is, however, an extensive overlap between individuals involved in, the ideas promoted and the vehicles of publication employed by B&WF and INSS, that reveal an almost seamless symbiosis between the two entities, with the former tasked with public activism and the latter with providing the intellectual bona fides.
My diagnosis was dramatically validated this week, at the INSS conference, when the major elements of the CU-concept were given extensive exposure and emphatic endorsement. In a session titled “The Palestinian Issue: Towards a Reality of Two States,” the INSS findings/recommendations were presented by Gilead Sher, co-founder/ chairman of B&WF and a senior research fellow at INSS, who headed the institute’s team that dealt with the study of the topic.
I wish I could find a way to say this more diplomatically, as I have no personal animosity for anyone involved in the compilation of the almost seven-page document produced by the team. Indeed, in some cases quite the opposite. But, sadly I cannot.
Obama’s scrub of Muslim terms under question; common links in attacks http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/apr/25/obamas-cleansing-of-islamic-terms-suppresses-commo/?page=all#pagebreak Before the Boston Marathon bombings, the Obama administration argued for years that there is a big difference between terrorists and the tenets of Islam. A senior White House aide in 2009 publicly urged Washington to cease using the term “jihadist” — asserting that […]
http://frontpagemag.com/2013/bosch-fawstin/calling-islam-islam/ I wrote this a few years ago, and I think it’s worth posting again, particularly after the latest jihadist attack in Boston. I noticed, after the attack this week, that a number of people are using more proper terminology to identify this enemy, which is very important in taking on the enemy. I recall […]
Obama’s smear misfires at GOP ‘deniers’: ‘The inconvenient truth is Obama & the Democrats have made many utterly ignorant & often times comical climate science claims’ — A Climate Depot Rebuttal
Climate Depot Responds to Obama campaign’s climate smear of skeptics — Morano: ‘Bluntly stated, a man — President Obama — who declared his presidency would result in ‘the rise of the oceans beginning to slow’, has no business whatsoever claiming he understands, let alone champions science in any way’ — ‘A president who claims Americans can ‘do something’ about floods, hurricanes, droughts tornadoes is not pro-science’
By Marc Morano – Climate DepotApril 25, 2013 11:55 PM
Climate Depot Editorial
President Barack Obama’s campaign to smear and intimidate global warming skeptics in Congress is now in full swing. See: Obama campaign launches plan to shame climate skeptics in Congress: ‘It is time to call out U.S. politicians who deny the science behind climate change’ & Obama Tweets about global warming: ‘Climate deniers in Congress refuse to even debate the issue. Make sure they don’t get away with it’
Obama’s new campaign hopes to silence skepticism, despite the fact that the GOP is the party taking a pro-science stand when it comes to man-made global warming fears. See: Lord Christopher Monckton defends GOP from Obama campaign attack: ‘Obama climate video stars GOP truthsayers’ — Monckton says GOP ‘talking common sense about climate’
The inconvenient truth for Obama is that he and his fellow Democrats have made many utterly ignorant and often times comical climate science claims. Bluntly stated, a man — President Obama — who declared his presidency would result in ‘the rise of the oceans beginning to slow’, has no business whatsoever claiming he understands, let alone champions science in any way.
Earlier this year, I wrote a series of posts on “The Fox Effect,” which analyzed Fox coverage of Islamic stories through the Saudi scrim — in other words, keeping in mind the part-ownership (7 percent) of News Corp. by ranking Saudi scion Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, and the part-ownership (nearly 20 percent) of Rotana (Alwaleed’s media company) by Rupert Murdoch. (More coverage here.) The series culminated with a lengthy Q & A with Ryan Lauro here.
In this week’s syndicated column, I note that Fox — where Steve Emerson first broke the news that Saudi 3B-terrorist and ex-“person of interest” in the Boston bombing, Abdul Rahman Ali Alharbi, was slated for deportation on “national security grounds” — appears to have “dropped” the story. That is too tepid a term. While Glenn Beck appeared on O’Reilly last night to present his team’s ground-breaking work on the MSM-ignored story, Fox hasn’t just dropped the story. The network is censoring it.
A search of the Fox News website reveals zero entries on Alharbi. To date, the Emerson video discussing Alharbi’s scheduled deportation remains available; so does Beck’s O’Reilly video. There are no news stories, however, on the Saudi national who was detained, becoming a “person of interest,” a 3-B terrorism-designee, a “witness,” and then a bone of contention between House members and DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano. The whole event is non-news.
More aggressively sinister, a report by Todd Starnes, radio host of “Fox News and Commentary” and a regular on “Fox & Friends,” was taken down from the site — even after it was a Drudge selection (i.e., widely publicized), twice!
Dated April 22, the Starnes story broke news. It was headlined: “Saudi National Was on Terror Watch List” — a claim that Janet Napolitano would confirm before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Starnes’ tweet on the topic remains in place.
Richard Falk and radical Islam
U.N. special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories Richard Falk caused a major brouhaha over a piece he published in Foreign Policy Journal last week.
“A Commentary on the Marathon Murders,” which appeared on April 19, suggested that the Boston bombings were linked to America’s Middle East policy, particularly as it relates to Israel.
“… [A]s long as Tel Aviv has the compliant ear of the American political establishment, those who wish for peace and justice in the world should not rest easy,” he wrote, adding, “Some of us naively hoped that Obama’s Cairo speech of 2009 was to be the beginning of … a process of renewal… acknowledg[ing] that relations with the Islamic world needed fundamental moves by the U.S. government for the sake of reconciliation, including the adoption of a far more balanced approach to the Palestine/Israel impasse. But as the months passed, what became evident, especially given the strong pushback by Israel and its belligerent leader, Bibi Netanyahu, were a series of disappointing reactions by Obama … Now at the start of his second presidential term, it seems that Obama has given up altogether, succumbing to the Beltway ethos of Israel First.”
Yes, asserted Falk, the United States needs to engage in “self-scrutiny,” because until “this process of reassessment occurs … America’s military prowess and the abiding confidence of its leaders in hard power diplomacy makes the United States a menace to the world and to itself.”
This is merely a morsel from the radical feast laid out by Falk in his piece, which is why it elicited so much criticism, both in the Jewish community and in the Obama administration. Even U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice on Tuesday tweeted her outrage: “Someone who spews such vitriol has no place at the U.N. Past time for him to go.”
Falk’s response to the outcry was to publish a “Clarifying Boston Marathon Post” on his blog.
“… I had no intention whatsoever to connect any dots as to whether there was a causal linkage between what the U.S. or Israel have done in the world and what happened in Boston,” he wrote on Thursday. “My only effort was to suggest that in addition to grieving and bringing the perpetrators to justice, this could also become an occasion for collective self-scrutiny as a nation and as a people.”
This is not a retraction. Nor does it suffice to let its author off the hook.
But let’s not kid ourselves: Falk’s positions, and his anti-American and pro-radical Islam activism, have been an open book throughout his career.
In various official capacities, he has called Israel an “apartheid state;” compared Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians to Nazism; accused Israel of “ethnic cleansing;” and justified Islamic suicide bombings as a legitimate method of resistance.
These constitute but a tiny fraction of the egregious misrepresentations, outright lies and extremist views that Falk has disseminated over the past several decades. That the United Nations Human Rights Council appointed him in 2008 to a six-year term as a “special rapporteur” on behalf of the Palestinians is therefore as fitting as it is no surprise.
What bears reminding anyone who has forgotten, however, is Falk’s track record on the Islamic Republic.
In January 1979, Falk — a professor of international law at Princeton — accompanied former Attorney-General Ramsey Clark and Don Luce, a prominent member of “Clergy and Laity Concerned” (established in 1965 by the National Council of Churches to “struggle against American imperialism and exploitation in just about every corner of the world”) on a private, eight-day fact-finding mission to Iran. At the end of the trip, the trio stopped over in France to meet Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, who had been living in exile for 14 years.
Right around this time, the ousted, cancer-ridden Shah of Iran Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, fled the country. Two weeks later, Khomeini returned to take over the country. When asked by reporters on his flight how he felt about coming home to his native land, Khomeini said that he “felt nothing,” indicating that the spread of Islam was what mattered to him, not the borders of his birthplace.
That was on February 1.
On February 16, Falk published an op-ed in The New York Times called “Trusting Khomeini.” In the piece, Falk waxed poetic about the Muslim cleric, disabusing readers of the notion that the oft-regarded “mystery man” was someone to be feared either by Iranians or by the West. “The depiction of him as fanatical, reactionary, and the bearer of crude prejudices seems certainly and happily false.”
Falk went on to laud the progressive and benevolent nature of Shiite Islam. “What is distinctive, perhaps, about this religious orientation,” he wrote, “is its concern with resisting oppression and promoting social justice.”
He concluded that, “Having created a new model of popular revolution based, for the most part, on non-violent tactics, Iran may provide us with a desperately needed model of humane governance for a third world country.”
Well, we saw what the Islamic Republic of Iran’s “humane governance” looked like. We watched as Khomeini backed the “students” — among them Mahmoud Ahmadinejad — who took over the U.S. Embassy and held dozens of its staff hostage for 444 days. And we witnessed President Carter trying to negotiate their release by “understanding the grievances” of the Iranian regime.
Indeed, no matter what the circumstances, some things, as some people, never change. Falk is one such person. That neither he nor his false prophecies have been totally discredited by any and all American and international bodies connected with education or human rights is what beggars belief — not Falk’s predictable blog posts.
Ruthie Blum is the author of “To Hell in a Handbasket: Carter, Obama, and the ‘Arab Spring.’”
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Feds Further Investigating Role of Bomber’s Wife
Katherine Russell Tsarnaeva notified husband that the FBI had released his picture.
Stephen F. Hayes
Law enforcement officials are carefully reexamining any possible role that Katherine Russell Tsarnaeva, the wife of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, played in the Boston Marathon bombings on April 15, according to three federal officials with knowledge of the investigation. The intense scrutiny comes as a result of information provided by Dzokhar Tsarnaev in his on-again, off-again interrogation by FBI officials before he was read his rights by a federal magistrate.
According to those officials, Dzokhar Tsarnaev told interrogators that the information that set in motion the series of events leading to Tamerlan’s death and Dzokhar’s apprehension came in a phone call from Katherine Russell Tsarnaeva to her husband. “She notified him and there certainly didn’t seem to be any notion of surprise – just a report that ‘you’re being watched,’” said one official with knowledge of the investigation. Tsarnaev had seen the photographs and videos distributed by the FBI on television and called her husband to give him a heads up.
After receiving that phone call, authorities believe, Tamerlan decided he could not continue to hide from law enforcement and triggered the brothers’ bizarre flight from authorities – a wild chase that included the murder of an MIT police officer, a convenience-store robbery, a carjacking, shootouts with police officers, the death of Tamerlan and the capture of Dzokhar.
An attorney for Katherine Russell Tsarnaeva said earlier this week that her client knew nothing about her husband’s plans and wanted to help authorities conducting the investigation. “She is doing everything she can to assist with the investigation,” said Amato DeLuca, her attorney, in a statement. “The report of involvement by her husband and brother-in-law came as an absolute shock to them all.”
Tsarnaeva, 24, grew up in Rhode Island and converted to Islam after meeting Tamerlan Tsarnaev. She has been staying with her parents in Rhode Island.