LT. COLONEL JAMES G. ZUMWALT, USMC (RET) : NORTH KOREA’S “I SHRUNK THE KIDS POLICY” Undoubtedly, North Korea’s new 20-something leader, Kim Jong Un, was thrilled by the Olympic weightlifting competition in which the country was represented by Om Yum Chol, 20. Om won a gold medal, setting a record by lifting three times his body weight. Most of Om’s life was spent growing up under Kim’s late father, […]



Daniel Hannan is a writer and journalist, and has been Conservative MEP for South East England since 1999. He speaks French and Spanish and loves Europe, but believes that the European Union is making its constituent nations poorer, less democratic and less free.

In one of his Cicero novels, Robert Harris has the slave narrator, Tiro, wonder why anyone wants to build empires or raze cities when they might instead be sitting in the sunshine with a good book.

I can’t remember when I last sat in the sunshine with such a pleasant feeling of anticipation as when carrying Roger Kimball’s wonderful book,The Fortunes of Permanence.

Kimball is one of the cleverest men alive, and has interesting things to say about almost everything: art, architecture, rhetoric, statecraft, theology, music, poetry, history. His prose style is a joy: erudite but never recondite, witty but never precious. He carries large chunks of the Western canon in his head, and can find an apt quotation for every situation without coming across as contrived. He is a master of the art (so clumsy in the wrong hands) of parenthesis.

The only reason that Kimball, editor of the cultural review The New Criterion, and publisher of Encounter Books, is not acknowledged as one of the great intellectuals of our age is that he is on the Right, and so occupies a place beyond the mental horizons of the commissioning editors who set the tone of our public discourse. Since there are as yet few signs of the cultural shift he would like to see, I’m afraid his recognition will be largely posthumous. Something similar might be said of his British equivalent, Roger Scruton, but that’s another story.

The Fortunes of Permanence is a collation of linked essays. Some centre on literary and philosophical figures: William Godwin, Rudyard Kipling, G.K. Chesterton, Malcolm Muggeridge. (Kimball, educated in Maine and at Yale, is the most penetrating Anglophile I know: he sees us as we are, with all our faults, and likes us anyway.) Others look at the major political currents of the past hundred years.

BYRON YORK: 1099 FELONS VOTE IN A RACE WON BY 312 BALLOTS “Wasserman Shultz and her fellow Democrats are doing everything they can to stop reasonable anti-fraud measures, like removing ineligible voters from the rolls and voter ID. Through it all, they maintain they are simply defending our most fundamental right, the right to vote.” In the eyes of the Obama administration, most Democratic lawmakers, and […]


Chinese ‘very impressed’ with Israeli economy

Major Beijing university to offer courses on Israel’s high-tech, business culture; another school teaches Hebrew language, culture
Itamar Eichner
One of Beijing’s largest universities is set to establish an Israeli economics and Judaism department, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Wednesday.

DAVID GOLDMAN: SAUDIS TO MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD….”DROP DEAD” “The uneasy modus vivendi between the Muslim Brotherhood and the military most likely will fail, and probably sooner than later,” I argued July 9, and the aftermath of the terrorist execution of sixteen Egyptian soldiers in the Sinai peninsula supports this conclusion. The funeral service for the dead soldiers erupted in rage against the […]


It wasn’t a gloved-fist salute from the medal stand, but Jewish-American gymnast Aly Raisman made quite a statement yesterday by winning a gold medal and invoking the memory of the Israeli athletes killed 40 years ago in Munich.

Raisman finished first in the women’s floor exercise, but she deserves to have another medal draped around her neck for having the chutzpah to face the world and do what needed to be done and say what needed to be said.

At the same Olympic Games where bigoted organizers stubbornly refuse to honor the slain athletes with a moment of silence, 18-year-old Raisman loudly shocked observers first by winning, then by paying her own tribute to 11 sportsmen who died long before she was born.
GYM DANDY: Jewish-American gymnast Aly Raisman dazzles the London Games yesterday with her Olympic gold-medal floor routine set to the crowd-pleasing “Hava Nagila.”
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And if that weren’t enough, she won her event with the Hebrew folk song “Hava Nagila” playing in the background.

“Having that floor music wasn’t intentional,” an emotional but poised Raisman told reporters after her performance.

“But the fact it was on the 40th anniversary is special, and winning the gold today means a lot to me.”

Then Raisman stuck the landing.

“If there had been a moment’s silence,” the 18-year-old woman told the world, “I would have supported it and respected it.”

ISRAEL’S SINAI DILEMMA: P. DAVID HORNIK On Sunday night, terrorists at the Egyptian-Israeli border stormed a checkpoint and massacred 16 Egyptian border guards there. They then drove two vehicles toward Israel with the aim of perpetrating a mass-casualty attack against Israeli civilians—thwarted by the combined efforts of the Israeli ground forces and air force. Yet, according to official statements of […]


In the Robert Redford production The Motorcycle Diaries, Mexican-born actor Gael Garcia Bernal reveled in the role of Ernesto Guevara. “I cannot remember when I didn’t know about Che,” he sighed during an interview in 2004:

“Che has so much to do with your ideals as a young man. His mythification, Che the icon, is not three-dimensional. To have the T-shirt doesn’t mean much. With the film, we wanted to bring that character closer to ourselves.”

Now, in the movie “No,” Bernal is playing the role of Rene Saavedra, a Chilean PR man mounting a press campaign against Chilean President Augusto Pinochet during a 1988 referendum. The movie’s title “No” refers to how the Bernal character wants Chileans to vote regarding Pinochet’s continuation as Chilean President.

“This made me realize the profound pain caused by the (Pinochet) dictatorship and it hit me hard,” he told The Associated Press this week in Santiago Chile. “The director wanted to make a movie about the history of what went on in 1988, as well as an introspection and reflection on democracy.”

While prepping for his role as Che in The Motorcycle Diaries, Bernal admits to often visiting Cuba for coaching by the Stalinist regime’s KGB-founded propaganda ministry. The regime co-founded by Che Guevara has banned voting under penalty of firing squad and prison for half a century.

After 14 years in power, Pinochet allowed a vote that ousted him. After 53 years, the regime co-founded by Che Guevara still outlaws it.

But we search in utter vain for any expression of “pain” felt by Bernal on behalf of Cubans, or any “reflection” by him (on the extinction of) Cuban democracy for a period over three times as long as its absence in Chile.

But why pick on Gael Garcia Bernal?

Back in 2006, Fidel Castro got sick and seemed on his deathbed shortly before Augusto Pinochet passed away. So both names were much in the news. This provided a controlled setting, a veritable laboratory, for testing media bias.

The terms “human rights abuses,” along with “murders and tortures” appeared consistently in the articles on one Latin American leader, while being almost completely absent from stories about the other.

One leader jailed more political prisoners as a percentage of population than Stalin—and for three times as long. Modern history’s longest-suffering political prisoners languished in the prisons and forced-labor camps established by his regime. According to the Harvard-published “Black Book of Communism,” he executed 16,000 subjects by firing squad. These ranged in age from 16 to 68 and included women, at least one of them pregnant. According to the scholars and researchers at the Cuba Archive, his regime’s total death toll—from torture, prison beatings, machine gunning of escapees, drownings, etc.—comes to more than 100,000. According to Freedom House, 500,000 Cubans have suffered in his gulag and torture chambers. Today, 53 years after the establishment of the totalitarian police state, political prisoners still languish in his regime’s prisons for quoting Martin Luther King and Gandhi.

He is the one where the news articles omitted the terms “human rights abuses, torture and murders” and where “gains in health care and literacy” predominated

One led a coup to oust a Marxist regime that had been declared unconstitutional by his nation’s legislature and Supreme Court. In the “dirty war” immediately following the coup, 3,000 people were killed and 30,000 arrested. Within a few years, all had been released or exiled.

J. CHRISTIAN ADAMS: A REVIEW OF Fund and von Spakovsky’s Who’s Counting, Your User’s Manual to Election 2012

Some are concerned that voting machines will alter the results of the 2012 election. A new book by John Fund and PJ Media’s Hans von Spakovsky demonstrates that all of us should be concerned about the machinery of American elections, not the machines themselves.

Who’s Counting: How Fraudsters and Bureaucrats Put Your Vote at Risk (Encounter Books, 2012) is essential to understanding the electoral mechanisms that will decide the November elections. The authors debunk voter fraud deniers with case after case of fraud, and explain how the fraud affects public policy.

Consider the clown who went to Congress, Al Franken. Who’s Counting asks and answers the question “Would Obamacare have passed without voter fraud?” The answer, according to the authors, is no.

They document how felons like Sabrina Ruth Hall illegally voted for Franken. When she was asked on camera if her vote might have helped Franken, she unashamedly replied, “I don’t know, but I hope it did.” Naturally, Eric Holder has failed to prosecute Hall under 42 U.S.C. § 1973gg-10(2), a statute which criminalizes casting an illegitimate ballot in a federal election.

But Holder isn’t alone in failing to uphold the rule of law. The authors also call out John Kingrey, the head of the Minnesota County Attorneys Association. Minnesota actually makes it a crime for a prosecutor to fail to investigate when presented with sworn evidence of voter fraud. Why didn’t Kingrey advocate investigations into the rampant election fraud in 2008? According to Kingrey, that course of action “diverted resources from the job that we want to do.” Kingrey was more interested in engagement on legislation related to bong water.

Von Spakovsky and Fund document how the left is outgunning conservatives on election process weaponry. While the Minnesota recount was occurring, GOP lawyers were armed with clipboards and pens. In contrast, for Franken’s “scanners, laptops, and other mobile devices were used to keep track of every single disputed ballot in every county in Minnesota. Decisions made by local election boards were immediately uploaded to a cloud database set up by the campaign so that [Franken’s team] knew exactly what vote totals were for each candidate … at every point in time.”

The authors also describe the vast and well-funded apparatus of vote fraud deniers and their litigation counterparts like the NAACP LDF, Brennan Center for Justice, and the wholly partisan League of Women Voters.

Sometimes the activities of the partisans take comic turns, as happened to the League of Women Voters in a challenge to the Indiana voter ID law. The LWV had produced a “victim” who could not vote because she purportedly lacked photo ID. It turns out that she couldn’t vote in Indiana because she had produced a Florida driver’s license, was registered to vote in Florida, and declared a Florida homestead exemption. Such is the stuff that partisans like the League of Women Voters will use to attack election integrity measures, as documented in Who’s Counting.


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The Legacy of Islamic Antisemitism: From Sacred Texts to Solemn History by Andrew G. Bostom and Ibn Warraq (Jun 5, 2008

“Anyone who loves freedom and justice must strive for the annihilation of the Zionist regime in order to pave the way for world justice and freedom.” So said Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad [1] to an audience of ambassadors from Muslim countries last Thursday. The ambassadors had convened in Tehran for Quds Day — Jerusalem Day — an annual airing of Islamic supremacist Jew-hatred and Zionist conspiracy-mongering begun by the Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979.

The world has grown used to the spectacle of a head of government, Ahmadinejad, calling for the destruction of a nation-state that poses no threat to his regime — after all, he has done it so many times before. But Islamic anti-Semitism is also on the rise around the world. Indeed, so many Muslim leaders around the world so routinely call for the destruction of Israel and a new genocide of the Jews (which would almost certainly go hand-in-hand with that destruction, if it ever actually came about), that such calls are becoming as dull with familiarity as Ahmadinejad’s repeated predictions of Israel’s imminent demise.

Last June, a Pakistani Muslim cleric named Pirzada Muhammad Raza Saqib Mustafai said [2] the following in a YouTube video titled “Jews Are the Real Enemy of Islam and Peace”: “And all the troubles that exist around the world are because of the Jews. When the Jews are wiped out, then the world would be purified and the sun of peace would begin to rise on the entire world.”

Such clerics are not obscure eccentrics enunciating a twisted, hijacked version of Islam. In January 2009, the most popular Islamic preacher in the world, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, said on al-Jazeera [3]: “Throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the [Jews] people who would punish them for their corruption. The last punishment was carried out by Hitler. By means of all the things he did to them – even though they exaggerated this issue – he managed to put them in their place. This was divine punishment for them. Allah willing, the next time will be at the hand of the believers….”

Qaradawi continued: “I’d like to say that the only thing I hope for is that as my life approaches its end, Allah will give me an opportunity to go to the land of Jihad and resistance, even if in a wheelchair. I will shoot Allah’s enemies, the Jews, and they will throw a bomb at me, and thus, I will seal my life with martyrdom.”