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Questions for the New York Times After Its Latest Blood Libel of Israel

The New York Times recently carried on its front page photographs of 67 children, Arab and Jewish, who died during the recent conflict between Hamas and Israel, over the caption “They Were Just Children.” Under each child’s photo, the Times had provided the name of the party responsible for the child’s death; for 64 of the photos, “Israel” was declared responsible. More on this atrocious story is here: “‘The New York Times’ Repackages a Classic Blood Libel,” by James Sinkinson, JNS.org, June 16, 2021:

Though most New York Times readers would not likely have realized it, the dramatic, front-page, full-color photo collage of children killed in the recent Hamas-Israel war was a crudely repackaged version of a classic blood libel against the Jewish people.

On May 28, after Israel ceased its defensive operations to stop Hamas rocket fire and ensure security for Israel’s citizens, The New York Time plastered on its front page a collage of 67 faces of children killed in the conflict, under the title, “They Were Only [sic] Children.”

A caption under each photo in the associated article described how each child died. The captions under 64 of the children perversely named Israel as the cause of death. The truth, of course, is quite the contrary.

Gaza’s terrorist-designated Hamas dictatorship, which started the fighting unprovoked by attacking Israeli citizens with thousands of rockets, determined the pace and intensity of the war, as well as the targets of Israeli retaliation.

While the Times insinuated that Israel chose to kill these children—and that Israel’s actions were unjustified at best and malicious at worst—in fact, every one of those 67 children died at Hamas’s hands.

Hamas was responsible for the deaths of Palestinian children whom the terror group deliberately put in harm’s way by placing its rockets, and launching them, from inside or near civilian structures – kindergartens, schools, hospitals, apartment buildings, and other places where children would naturally be found. Hamas wanted Palestinian children to die; they would then serve usefully for propaganda purposes – as they did when the photographs of dead Arab children appeared on the front page of the New York Times. Israel, of course, tries as hard as it can to avoid civilian casualties, including children, by telephoning, leafletting, emailing warnings about an impending attack on a target, practicing its “knock-on-the-roof” technique, all in order to get everyone in those buildings to flee. Israel has no desire to kill children or other civilians.

Ever since the Middle Ages, Jews and Jewish communities around the world have been regularly accused of killing innocent non-Jewish children, in bloodlust or in the service of fantastical religious services. Over hundreds of years, such false accusations of murder have come to be known as “blood libel.”…

Despite the Times’ almost daily criticism of the Jewish state—and its decades-long tradition of siding with Israel’s enemies—the front-page photo collage reinvigorated an antisemitic canard, and clearly crossed a line….

There is a straight line from the medieval blood libel of Jews killing Christian children to use their blood in making Passover wafers, and the New York Times blaming “Jews” (Zionists) for the presumably deliberate killing of more than 60 Palestinian children.

Fair-minded people need to ask why, of all the bloody conflicts raging around the world, only the operation involving self-defense for the national homeland of the Jewish people was singled out for this graphically disturbing treatment.

Hundreds of thousands of people die in violent conflict and war around the world every year — 19,444 died in Afghanistan and 19,044 in Yemen in 2020, to say nothing of tens of thousands more in Syria, Somalia and Iraq. Not one of these conflicts was deserving of a front-page photo collage in the Times.

There were many more children who were killed in the continuing wars in Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Iraq, and, Ethiopia than in the recent Hamas-Israel war. Why was it that the Times has never seen fit to print a similar front-page collage of the dead children in any of those conflicts? Were those children less important than the Palestinian Arab children? Or were the Palestinian Arab children worthy of heightened attention only because Israel could be, and was, blamed by the Times for their deaths?

Moreover, the Times collage project deceptively hid the context of the children’s deaths. It did not mention the [real] reason these children died.

According to HonestReporting, the context was buried: “Just minutes after the war between Israel and Hamas broke out, a 5-year-old boy named Baraa al-Gharabli was killed in Jabaliya, Gaza,” the opening sentence of “They Were Only Children” dramatically asserts. Only 20 paragraphs later do readers find out that al-Gharabli’s tragic death “may have been” caused by a Hamas rocket that fell short.

Israel Defense Forces’ radar images show that some 15 percent of all rockets launched by Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) fell inside Gaza, unquestionably killing and injuring many Palestinians. Initial research indicates that failed Palestinian rocket launches killed at least nine of the children pictured in the Times piece. Still, the Times absolves Hamas of the responsibility for their deaths.

The IDF had made public radar images that showed nearly 680 Hamas rockets that had been launched against Israel, but fell instead inside Gaza, where they injured and killed Palestinians, including children. It appears that at least nine of the children who died in Gaza had been hit by Hamas’ own rockets. There is no mention of this under their photos, which attributes their deaths to Israel alone. Nor did the Times mention in the body of its article that accompanied the photos that 680 Hamas rockets fell short in Gaza itself, injuring and killing children and other civilians. Why not? Who at the Times decided that information should be left out?

Furthermore, in an embarrassment to those who put the collage together, some of the photos were of children alive and well, while others were of those who Hamas claimed as members, even if they were only 17 years old. One of them, Khaled Qanou, was a member of the Mujahideen Brigades, the armed wing of the Palestinian Mujahideen Movement. This vital information was not mentioned anywhere in the Times’ disingenuous diatribe.

Of the 67 Palestinian children who were reported as killed by Israel, we know of at least nine who die from Hamas rockets, not because Hamas admitted it, but because Israeli photos show where a Hamas rocket fell short in Gaza exactly where those children were then reported to have died. Other Palestinian “children” turn out to have been in their late teens, and members of terrorist groups, including the Palestinian Mujahideen Movement, and Hamas itself. But that information was kept from its readers by the New York Times; it would only muddy the tear-jerking message that “They Were Only Children.”

Finally, the images provide no clarification as to the remarkably low ratio of civilian deaths in Israel’s wars with Hamas. Col. Richard Kemp, former commander of British forces in Afghanistan, notes that a United Nations study showed “that the ratio of civilian to combatant deaths in Gaza was by far the lowest in any asymmetric conflict in the history of warfare.”

Kemp states that this ratio was less than 1:1 and compared it favorably to the estimated ratios of NATO operations in Afghanistan (3:1), western campaigns in Iraq and Kosovo (believed to be 4:1), and the conflicts in Chechnya and Serbia (much higher than 4:1).

Kemp argues that the low ratio was achieved through unprecedented measures taken by the IDF to minimize civilian casualties, including warnings to the population via telephone calls, radio broadcasts and leaflets, as well as granting pilots the discretion to abort a strike if they perceived too great a risk of civilian casualties.

And as we know, Israel invented the “knock-on-the-roof” technique, the practice of dropping non-explosive or low-yield devices on the roofs of targeted civilian homes as a prior warning of imminent bombing attacks to give the inhabitants time to flee the attack. The practice was first employed by the Israelis in the 2008-2009 Gaza war, and along with telephoning, radio broadcasts, and leafletting, was used again in this latest war with Hamas. We have also learned of Israeli pilots aborting a mission when they detected the presence of children at a targeted site. Here is one example.

The astonishingly low ratio – 1:3 — of civilian-to-fighter casualties in Gaza is based on figures from the IDF, which believes it killed 225 Hamas fighters, with about 75 civilians killed. That is an amazing figure; in modern warfare the ratio of civilians-to-fighters killed is ordinarily at least 3:1. But because of the enormous efforts Israel makes to warn civilians away from its targets, sometimes giving them as much as two hours warning to flee, civilian casualties were kept very low, despite Hamas’ deliberate efforts to increase them. That two-hours warning was what Israel provided to the residents of the media tower, the Al-Jalaa Building, that received so much attention because the AP offices were located there, along with the actual target of the IAF, Hamas weapons development and intelligence facilities.

He [Colonel Richard Kemp] also states that the civilian casualties that did occur could be seen in light of Hamas’s tactical use of Gazan civilians “as human shields, to hide behind, to stand between Israeli forces and their own fighters,” and strategic exploitation of their deaths in the media….

Questions for the Grey Lady:

Why have you never published a front-page collage, or even one on an inside page, of children killed in any of two dozen recent conflicts, such continuing wars as those in Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Iraq, and Ethiopia?

Why, in your coverage of the children who died in the latest Gaza war, did you make no mention of Hamas’ deliberate use of human shields, including children, by hiding its rockets in, and launching them from, civilian buildings such as kindergartens, schools, hospitals, and apartment buildings?

Why, in your coverage of the children who died in the Gaza war, did you make no mention of the fact that some were known to have been killed by the 680 Hamas rockets aimed at Israel but fell short, and struck people inside Gaza?

Why, in your coverage of the children killed in Gaza, did you not subsequently let your readers know that several of those “children” whose photographs appeared were in their late teens, and were members of Hamas and the Palestinian Muhajideen Movement?

Why did The New York Times publish in its “They Were Only Children” collage a 2015 stock photo of a young girl, claiming Israeli forces killed her during the May 2021 war with Hamas? Why did it never apologize for that error?

Why did you not make any mention in the text that accompanies the photos of 67 dead children that Israeli pilots aborted missions when they detected children too close to the target?

Why do you nowhere mention, in the text accompanying the collage of photos of children killed in the war, Israel’s various methods to minimize civilian casualties? These include warning the inhabitants of impending targets through phone calls, leafletting, emails, and the “knock-on-the-roof technique,” giving them time – sometimes as much as two hours — to flee. Wasn’t all that worth mentioning?

Why do you trust the figures released by Hamas of “67 children” killed when, from the three previous Hamas-Israel wars, the numbers put out by Hamas proved, upon further investigation, to have been grossly inflated? Given that history, shouldn’t we be skeptical of Hamas this time?

Do we have any reason, on the other hand, to think that the figures about casualties provided by the IDF are to be trusted? Doesn’t the IDF have a long track record of putting out reliable figures?

That’s enough questions for now. I’m sure your continued skewed coverage of the Hamas-Israel conflict will prompt still others.

COLUMN BY

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EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. All rights reserved.

New York Times Details Horrors of Trump’s ‘Muslim Ban,’ Ignores Victims of Jihad Attacks

The New York Times story opens with a scene of unmitigated horror: “On May 30, 2019, Mohamed Abdulrahman Ahmed should have been in class preparing for exams. Instead, neighbors found the gifted high school senior hanging lifeless from a beam in his home in the Dadaab refugee camp in northeastern Kenya. He had taken his own life.” Since this is the New York Times, it comes as no surprise that the ultimate culprit is none other than Donald J. Trump, and his nefarious “Muslim Ban” that his wise successor’s handlers have now consigned to the dustbin of history.

Times author Ty McCormick does his best to tug at our heartstrings as he describes Dadaab, “a sea of sand and thorn scrub and makeshift tarpaulin dwellings” that is “home to more than 200,000 people — a city the size of Richmond, Va., or Spokane, Wash., except without electricity or running water.”

It’s a place absolutely mired in despair, but “over the years, refugees in Dadaab have clung to one hope: resettlement overseas, sometimes in Europe or Canada but mostly in the United States. Tens of thousands of Dadaab’s residents have come to the United States; in 2015, for instance, more than 3,000 people from the camp were resettled there.”

But then came the reign of the Evil One: “Those hopes of a better life were dashed on Jan. 27, 2017, when on his eighth day as president, Donald Trump suspended all refugee admissions and banned entry to citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries, including Somalia. (Restrictions were eventually applied to 13 countries in all.)”

It’s a predictable sob story about how hard the residents of Dadaab have had it since they have been unable to come to America. One is moved to tears, but when one begins to consider the issue rationally, other considerations inevitably intrude: there are people who are having hard times all over the world. In fact, there are even people who are having hard times in the United States of America. There are people who are suffering economically, like the people in Dadaab. There are people who are suffering physically, emotionally, mentally, and in other ways. All over the world, there is suffering and pain. Why, then, is it the moral responsibility of the United States of America to alleviate the suffering of the people of Dadaab? No one in Kenya or Somalia or France or China or Australia or anywhere else is doing a thing to alleviate the sufferings of Americans; why is it up to Americans, all of whom are suffering in various ways themselves, to alleviate the suffering of everyone else?

Meanwhile, what about the suffering of those whose lives were destroyed by Somali migrants who came into the country before Trump’s travel ban came into effect? Can we get a New York Times article on them? Somali Muslim migrant Mohammad Barry in February 2016 stabbed multiple patrons at a restaurant owned by an Israeli Arab Christian. When is the New York Times going to interview the people whom Barry stabbed, and publish a piece about how they have suffered, and how their lives forever changed that day? When is the New York Times going to write a piece about the other people who were in the restaurant that day, and explore their trauma, their horror, their terror, and the nightmares and anxiety they have experienced since then?

When does the New York Times plan to profile the victims of Dahir Adan, another Somali Muslim migrant, who in October 2016 stabbed mall shoppers in St. Cloud while screaming “Allahu akbar”? Do Adan’s victims get a New York Times article about their injuries, their healing processes, any operations they may have had to undergo, and their own ongoing trauma and fear?

How about the victims of Abdul Razak Artan, yet another Somali Muslim migrant, who in November 2016 injured nine people with car and knife attacks at Ohio State University? Does the New York Times plan to explain to us how the victims whom Artan tried to run down with his car (in an instance of the common phenomenon of vehicular jihad) now find their hearts racing at the prospect of having to cross the street?

Of course, the New York Times is not going to publish even a single line about the suffering of those people and others like them, or even consider the possibility that Trump’s travel bans did anything but harm. Only the suffering of the people of Dadaab and others like them, not the suffering of victims of jihad attacks, matters to the Times. The suffering of the people of Dadaab is very real, and should be addressed, but is the only solution, or the best solution, really the resettlement in the United States of large numbers of people among whom is an unknowable number of jihad terrorists, who will enter undetected since any vetting to try to discover them will be deemed “Islamophobic”?

There will soon be new victims of Biden’s handlers’ marvelous, multicultural discarding of the “Muslim Ban.” The New York Times will ignore them, while congratulating themselves on how they helped install a president who strikes back against “racism” and “xenophobia.”

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EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Biden is Wrong: US Didn’t Have Good Relationship With Hitler — But the New York Times Did

Did the United States really have a good relationship with Adolf Hitler before he started World War II? Joe Biden made this bizarre claim during Thursday’s debate with President Trump. Trump said of North Korea’s Kim Jong Un: “North Korea, we’re not in a war. We have a good relationship. People don’t understand. Having a good relationship with leaders of other countries is a good thing.”

Biden shot back: “We had a good relationship with Hitler before he, in fact, invaded Europe, the rest of Europe. Come on.”

Come on, Joe! The U.S. didn’t have a good relationship with Hitler before he “invaded Europe. The German dictator was, however, beloved in certain quarters, including the editorial offices of the New York Times.

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt didn’t attack Hitler directly before the war began, but relations between the U.S. and Nazi Germany were by no means good. In September 1938, Roosevelt sent a telegram to Hitler lecturing him about the importance of keeping the peace and stating: “The conscience and the impelling desire of the people of my country demand that the voice of their government be raised again and yet again to avert and to avoid war.” Implying that Hitler was a warmonger was hardly a hallmark of cordial relations between the two countries.

Failing to get a satisfactory response from Hitler, on October 11, 1938, Roosevelt announced that he was increasing national defense spending by $300 million (over $5 billion in today’s dollars). No one thought that money was going to build up our defenses against Britain and France.

Some in America, however, loved the Führer.

The historian Rafael Medoff recently noted that on July 9, 1933, just over five months after he became Chancellor of Germany and years after his virulent anti-Semitism and propensity for violence had become notorious worldwide, the New York Times published a fawning puff piece on Hitler that rivals even today’s media adulation of Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and Nancy Pelosi in its one-sidedness, myopia, and disdain for essential facts.

Pulitzer Prize-winning “journalist” Anne O’Hare McCormick traveled to Berlin to become the first reporter from an American news outlet to interview the new chancellor, and she was an intriguing choice for the Times editors to make to conduct this interview, as in the presence of this man whose name has become justly synonymous with evil, she was decidedly starry-eyed: “At first sight,” McCormick gushed, “the dictator of Germany seems a rather shy and simple man, younger than one expects, more robust, taller. His sun-browned face is full and is the mobile face of an orator.”

As if that weren’t enough, she continues with a description of the Führer as outlandish and adulatory as likening the supremely zaftig Stacy Abrams to a supermodel: “His eyes are almost the color of the blue larkspur in a vase behind him, curiously childlike and candid. He appears untired and unworried. His voice is as quiet as his black tie and his double-breasted black suit.”

McCormick labored to portray Hitler as more modest than his public persona might suggest: “In the country he has plastered with banners and insignia he wears only a small gold eagle in his buttonhole. No flag or swastika is in sight.” He is also, she signaled to her readers, reasonable and genuine: “He begins to speak slowly and solemnly but when he smiles — and he smiled frequently in the course of the interview — and especially when he loses himself and forgets his listener in a flood of speech, it is easy to see how he sways multitudes. Then he talks like a man possessed, indubitably sincere.” What’s more, “Herr Hitler has the sensitive hand of the artist.

The intrepid New York Times reporter doesn’t seem to have asked Hitler if he had a significant other, but no one would have been surprised after reading all this if the two of them had become an item.

However, McCormick’s interview was not all about Hitler’s sun-browned face and blue larkspur eyes. In the 29th paragraph of a 41-paragraph article, she recounts that she asked him: “How about the Jews? At this stage how do you measure the gains and losses of your anti-Semetic [sic] policies?” Hitler answered, she said, with “extraordinary fluency,” and she records his answer – a tissue of victim-blaming and excuse-making – at considerable length.

Then, McCormick recounts, “seeing the second part of the question was not going to be answered, your correspondent referred to the position of women.” Ah, yes: when the interviewee doesn’t want to answer the tough question, go on to something easier. The Times and its allies today always keep this in mind when interviewing Democrats. This surrender mollified Hitler as well: “Herr Hitler’s tension relaxed. He smiled his disarming smile.”

Little did Anne O’Hare McCormick realize, as Hitler’s blue larkspur eyes twinkled in her direction and his disarming smile made her heart flutter, that all these years later, the New York Times would still be publishing puff pieces about authoritarian thugs. And old Joe Biden, as he contemplates the approaching end of the presidential race from his Delaware basement, can rest secure in the certainty that no matter what outrageously false or crazy thing he says, that same New York Times will cover for him, too.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

‘Nice White Parents’ Responsible for Failing Public Schools, New York Times Says

Why does the public education system continue to fail America’s children? Policy experts have pondered this question for decades.

Most say the answer is complicated, requiring a nuanced, collaborative approach.

But not The New York Times. It found the problem, and it’s simple: white parents.

The solution? “Try, whenever possible, to suppress the power of white parents.”


How are socialists deluding a whole generation? Learn more now >>


That quote comes from the Times’ podcast “Nice White Parents,” which chronicles the history of a single public school in New York. Specifically, the host, Chana Joffe-Walt, decides to look into the racial history of this school.

Her first finding: Many parents who advocated for the integration of public schools, specifically this public school, did not end up enrolling their children. Instead, they chose to send their children to established schools with a history of success. This choice—made predominantly by white families—is why the school has struggled, Joffe-Walt says.

She contacts several of these parents to scold them for not sending their children to a worse school to serve the larger cause of public education. Some parents note that although they believed in advancing school integration, they perceived this particular school to struggle academically, noting that many students could not read at grade level.

Joffe-Walt chalks up these criticisms to racism, rather than a genuine observation that the school would be a step backward academically for a student functioning at grade level.

Does she offer concrete policy solutions to fix the underlying academic issues plaguing the school? Of course not. Instead, she perpetuates the myth that parents choosing to exit the public school system leads to underfunded schools.

In reality, schools are not underfunded. Not even close. In fact, since the creation of the Department of Education in 1979, education spending has gone only in one direction: up. Test scores, by contrast, have remained entirely stagnant.

New York spends almost $23,000 per student per year in the public school system—a close second to Washington, D.C., for the highest per-pupil expenditure in the country. That figure also is significantly higher than most private school tuitions. So why are so many schools still failing?

One reason: The public school system is drowning in bureaucracy. And bureaucrats get paid before teachers—and before students get new textbooks.

Ben Scafidi at Kennesaw State University has studied the concept of administrative bloat in the K-12 public education system extensively. He found that between 1950 and 2015, the student population at public schools had grown roughly 100%. During that same time period, teaching staff had grown 243%.

Although that disproportionate growth in the number of teachers compared to the growth in student population is shocking enough, that is hardly his biggest finding. During that same time period, “administrators and other staff” in the public school system grew 709%.

An increase in administrative staff exceeding 700% compared to just a 100% increase in students seems to be a far more likely answer to why heavily funded public schools appear to lack resources than the choices of some parents to seek out the best education options available for their children.

Throughout “Nice White Parents,” Joffe-Walt details examples of parents’ getting involved in the day-to-day operation of the school, and paints this involvement as affront to public schooling.

In Episode 1, for example, she describes how when “white parents” came into the school, many wanted their children to learn French, yet no French classes were offered. The parents formed a committee, held fundraisers, collaborated with administrators, and got their French program.

This is problematic, according to “Nice White Parents,” because a French program strays from the cultural needs of the majority-minority population of the school.

This scenario is exactly why every family needs school choice. There never will be a one-size-fits-all public school system that will offer the foreign language needs and wants of every family, nor other such demands.

The New York Times and the makers of “Nice White Parents” argue that the solution to the different wants and needs of families is to ignore the wishes of parents altogether and let education bureaucrats decide what is best for their children.

School choice proponents, by contrast, believe that every family in America should be empowered to choose an education option that is custom fit for their child’s needs. Through programs such as vouchers or education savings accounts, every family would be financially empowered to make that decision. Students do better when their parents are actively engaged in their education.

A podcast attacking parental autonomy is bad enough. But the fact that The New York Times attacks parents of a particular race for executing their autonomy is worse. “Nice White Parents” isn’t just troubling, it’s wrong, and an affront to American ideals.

Ultimately, this hurts all children because “Nice White Parents” racializes the failure of the public schools, hurting the students who are trapped there and don’t have the resources to flee the public system.

There has got to be some accountability for the failure of the public system. The New York Times’ use of a racist canard to avoid systemic culpability for failing these kids isn’t going to cut it.

COMMENTARY BY

Mary Clare Amselem is a policy analyst in education policy at The Heritage Foundation. Twitter: .


A Note for our Readers:

Democratic Socialists say, “America should be more like socialist countries such as Sweden and Denmark.” And millions of young people believe them…

For years, “Democratic Socialists” have been growing a crop of followers that include students and young professionals. America’s future will be in their hands.

How are socialists deluding a whole generation? One of their most effective arguments is that “democratic socialism” is working in Scandinavian countries like Sweden and Norway. They claim these countries are “proof” that socialism will work for America. But they’re wrong. And it’s easy to explain why.

Our friends at The Heritage Foundation just published a new guide that provides three irrefutable facts that debunks these myths. For a limited time, they’re offering it to readers of The Daily Signal for free.

Get your free copy of “Why Democratic Socialists Can’t Legitimately Claim Sweden and Denmark as Success Stories” today and equip yourself with the facts you need to debunk these myths once and for all.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Signal column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

VIDEO: When the New York Times covered up one of communism’s worst atrocities

A drama about the Holodomor, the 1930s genocide in Ukraine, is also a warning about fake news.


One of the great, universal truths is that everybody lies. From tiny white lies to great big whoppers, everyone does it, even babies. Don’t believe me?

“Sorry I’m late, traffic was terrible.”

“It’s so great to see you!”

“Doing well, thanks for asking!”

“I have read and agree to the above terms and conditions.”

These are just a handful of the easy, casual lies that we all offer up on an everyday basis. And much of the time, these kinds of lies are fairly harmless. These tiny deceptions are baked into most of our social interactions and, in many ways, grease the wheels of polite society. After all, how awkward and uncomfortable would our conversations be if we actually told the truth every time someone asked how we’re doing?

These are the lies we expect to be told and are expected to tell. And while I would personally like to see more honesty in everyone’s day-to-day interactions, I understand the purpose of these kinds of deceptions.

That said, the truth always matters. We may expect some level of insincerity in certain situations, but in others, honesty is more than simply suggested—it’s required.

When it comes to reporting news, telling the truth is vitally important.

The term “fake news” has been abused to the point of uselessness, but false reporting does exist and has for a long time. The information we receive through various media outlets and platforms is frequently critical for how we plan our days and how we plan our lives. When that information is false, intentionally or not, it can cause us very real problems.

Sometimes, the consequences are as simple and relatively benign as getting caught in the rain without an umbrella. Sometimes, though—and especially with intentionally misleading or false information—the results can be devastating to livelihoods and lives.

One of the most egregious examples of this was the coordinated cover-up of the Holodomor—a famine in the Ukraine deliberately created by the Soviet Union in 1932 and ’33.

In the span of a year, decreased output due to the forced collectivization of farms and the confiscation of foodstuffs by the Soviet army led to the deaths of between seven and ten million people, mostly ethnic Ukrainians. It was, in short, a genocide by means of starvation.

Freelance reporter Gareth Jones broke the story. He did what he was supposed to do as a journalist. He told the truth.

Unfortunately, Jones’s reporting shined an incredibly unflattering light on the fact that the news reports coming out of Moscow regarding the impressive successes of Soviet agriculture were false. Walter Duranty, the Moscow Bureau Chief for the New York Times, and the rest of the foreign press corps in Moscow promptly launched a coordinated campaign to discredit Jones’s reporting, despite the fact they all knew Jones was telling the truth.

Eugene Lyons, who was the Moscow correspondent for United Press at the time, even wrote in his 1937 book Assignment in Utopia:

Throwing down Jones was as unpleasant a chore as fell to any of us in years of juggling facts to please dictatorial regimes—but throw him down we did, unanimously and in almost identical formulations of equivocation. Poor Gareth Jones must have been the most surprised human being alive when the facts he so painstakingly garnered from our mouths were snowed under by our denials. … There was much bargaining in a spirit of gentlemanly give-and-take, under the effulgence of [Foreign Press Corps Soviet Official Konstantin] Umansky’s gilded smile, before a formal denial was worked out. We admitted enough to soothe our consciences, but in roundabout phrases that damned Jones as a liar. The filthy business having been disposed of, someone ordered vodka and zakuski.

It should be noted that both Duranty and Lyons were true believers in the communist cause and didn’t hesitate to use their positions as arbiters of truth to deceive the western world regarding the actual situation in the Soviet Union. As a result, around ten million people were starved to death during the Holodomor, and yet the Soviet Union continued to be propped up by Western governments and their investments. Furthermore, in total, approximately 100 million people have been killed by communist states since the Bolshevik Revolution which was allowed, in part, by the deceptions of professional “truth-tellers.”

This is not to say that bias, in and of itself, is to blame. Another great, universal truth is that everyone has some kind of bias. No matter how hard we try to be objective and relate only the facts, at least a little bit of that bias is going to show through. But there isn’t anything inherently wrong with having a bias, especially when it’s acknowledged.

The problems come when the bias in people we rely on to report the actual facts internally absolves them of telling outright lies to further their ideological goals.

This is not a problem of the past, either. Whether it’s an incident of claiming to have COVID-19 when they don’t or building an entire career out of fabricated “news” articles, the long and sordid story of falsified reports continues to this day.

This kind of “reporting” isn’t limited to simply lying, either. Blithely passing along uninvestigated press releases or unconfirmed allegations as fact also damages our trust in news media. Given how common such reporting is, it’s no wonder trust in news media in the US is only about 29 percent.

And then we wonder why so few people comply with suggestions and warnings given by the news media.

A commonly-offered solution to this problem with news media trust is fact-checking by a small handful of officially approved arbiters. However, the reason that Duranty and the New York Times, Lyons and the United Press, and the other members of the foreign press corps in Moscow were able to cover up the horrors of the Holodomor is precisely because only a handful of media outlets were considered legitimate.

Policies, regardless of who institute them, that centralize the distribution and judgment of truth would end up doing the opposite of what they intend. We would be right back to the bad old days of journalism where media monopolies could spread misinformation largely unchallenged.

It’s not hard to find some pretty spectacular fact-checking failures, and this is beside the fact that people tend to reject fact-checks that contradict their core beliefs regardless.

We in the US enjoy fairly robust legal protections for free speech and a free press, which, to be clear, is good thing. But what can we do when reporters don’t do their jobs correctly?

The solution is not to curb or restrict speech that doesn’t meet certain criteria. And it’s certainly not to limit the sources of various kinds of information. The only way to improve speech is to encourage more speech. We need an actual marketplace of ideas where consumers of information are able to judge for themselves what sources of that information meet their quality requirements and which do not.

The solution isn’t a single, official voice of truth. It’s billions of voices. It’s the competition of different ideas and their purveyors. It’s individuals thinking for themselves and accepting the responsibility that comes with that.

The reason the true believers of the Moscow foreign press corps faked their stories was that they feared the truth would hinder the cause they’d placed their faith in. But if a cause can be crushed by the simple telling of truth, it’s not much of a cause at all.

The truth matters and the truth will out, even in our world of “fake news” and clickbait.

But only if we let it and only if we demand it.

This article is republished from The Foundation for Economic Freedom under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Jen Maffessanti

Jen Maffessanti is a Senior Writer at FEE and mother of two. When she’s not advocating for liberty or chasing kids, she can usually be found cooking or maybe racing cars. Check out her website

EDITORS NOTE: This MercatorNet column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

NYT Publishes Radical Economic Manifesto Calling for Reparations

The New York Times devoted its entire “Sunday Review” section last weekend to an economic manifesto calling for banks to apologize for “structural racism,” for an Amendment enshrining “voter equality,” and for wealthy Americans to “give up your privilege.”

The manifesto, “The Economy We Need,” focuses on redressing economic inequality — not growth or job creation — as America’s main economic challenge. Toward that end, the lead editorial calls for the Federal Reserve to target black unemployment instead of overall unemployment, and for banks to pay reparations. It also demands banks “apologize for their culpability for and complicity in structural racism” and “commit to serving black people as they do whites.”

Other demands: cancel consumer debt and eliminate banking fees for black customers, and give interest-free mortgages to black homebuyers and interest-free loans to black-owned businesses.

The New York Times is now a propaganda megaphone for the Black Lives Matter racial extortion racket.


New York Times (NYT)

88 Known Connections

A staff writer at The New York Times Magazine wrote on June 5th that Black Lives Matter is “America’s current incarnation of a civil rights movement.” The author, Jenna Wortham, rhapsodized, “This is the biggest collective demonstration of civil unrest around state violence in our generation’s memory. The unifying theme, for the first time in America’s history, is at last: Black Lives Matter.” Her article was entitled “A ‘Glorious Poetic Rage.’”  This was the phrase an activist involved with Black Lives Matter in Minnesota used to describe how the third day of protests in that city felt “when a police station house was lit on fire.”

To learn more about the New York Times, click here for the profile link.

©All rights reserved.

New York Times Editor Quits Over Newspaper’s Internal ‘Orthodoxy’

The New York Times hired Bari Weiss as an opinion editor to help readers gain a wider perspective after President Donald Trump’s surprise election in 2016.

Now, Weiss has resigned her position as an op-ed editor and writer. In a lengthy letter to the Times’ publisher, posted on her personal website, she says she was bullied and run out of her job because of her personal views.

Weiss is a self-described centrist—hardly a conservative or Trump supporter—but she has drawn the ire of the hard left and seemingly a vocal portion of the Times’ readership and staff over her breaks from progressive orthodoxy.

In her resignation letter Tuesday to Publisher A.G. Sulzberger, Weiss writes that since hiring her, the Times has become more ruthlessly ideological.


Two regimes are fighting an ideological war in America today. But what side are you on? And how can you sharpen up on how to defend your position? Learn more now >>


“[A] new consensus has emerged in the press, but perhaps especially at this paper: that truth isn’t a process of collective discovery, but an orthodoxy already known to an enlightened few whose job is to inform everyone else,” Weiss writes in the letter dated July 14.

Weiss then explains how radicals now drive The New York Times’ editorial decisions. Specifically, radicals on the social media site Twitter:

As the ethics and mores of that platform have become those of the paper, the paper itself has increasingly become a kind of performance space. Stories are chosen and told in a way to satisfy the narrowest of audiences, rather than to allow a curious public to read about the world and then draw their own conclusions. I was always taught that journalists were charged with writing the first rough draft of history. Now, history itself is one more ephemeral thing molded to fit the needs of a predetermined narrative.

It’s clear that was the case after a controversy at the Times just a few weeks ago, when staffers publicly revolted after the newspaper printed an op-ed by Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark.

Cotton defended the potential use of the National Guard to quell riots, a position held by just over half of Americans, according to polls.

The Times backed down to the mob and attached a ridiculous, 317-word editor’s note atop Cotton’s June 3 op-ed, explaining how the published piece didn’t meet its standards.

Two editors were forced to resign over the decision to publish the op-ed by Cotton, a former Army Ranger who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

It’s clear that the real standard that was violated was the judgment of angry, left-wing opinionators.

In her resignation letter, Weiss writes:

The paper of record is, more and more, the record of those living in a distant galaxy, one whose concerns are profoundly removed from the lives of most people. This is a galaxy in which, to choose just a few recent examples, the Soviet space program is lauded for its ‘diversity’; the doxxing of teenagers in the name of justice is condoned; and the worst caste systems in human history include the United States alongside Nazi Germany.

On top of that, Weiss writes, the Times became a hostile work environment.

She says she had become a target of hate from co-workers behind the scenes and that “other New York Times employees publicly smear me as a liar and a bigot on Twitter with no fear that harassing me will be met with appropriate action. They never are.”

Weiss then offers a warning, and advice for young people who want a career in journalism:

Rule One: Speak your mind at your own peril. Rule Two: Never risk commissioning a story that goes against the narrative. Rule Three: Never believe an editor or publisher who urges you to go against the grain. Eventually, the publisher will cave to the mob, the editor will get fired or reassigned, and you’ll be hung out to dry.

Weiss’ resignation letter highlights the problems consuming not just The New York Times—which has slid deep into the camp of promoting activism over journalism in the past few years—but the media landscape as a whole.

Social justice warriors have taken over newsrooms.

The Times, for anyone paying attention, has been biased for generations. It’s a newspaper of record, as Weiss notes, and an incredibly powerful one. It also has been quite liberal and certainly has showed its bias in the past.

And it’s published its share of fake news.

The dispatches of Walter Duranty, who lied about the Soviet-created Ukrainian famine that killed millions in the 1930s, is perhaps one of the worst “fake news” scandals in modern history.

Nevertheless, The New York Times has had its share of high-quality journalism and accurate reporting, and has attempted to inject at least some ideas in its opinion section that aren’t left wing.

We are now entering a new era. The mask of objectivity is slipping off.

It’s clear that those running America’s premier journalistic institutions are dropping  any pretense of searching for the truth in favor of declaring they know the “truth.”

Just look at The New York Times’ deeply flawed and highly criticized 1619 Project, which, despite noted and half-heartedly acknowledged inaccuracies, won the Pulitzer Prize and is now being force-fed to students in schools around the country.

The slide of the Times mirrors the abandonment of the culture of free speech, debate, and inquiry in Western society. In its place is the elevation of “lived experience,” militant political correctness, and cancel culture—ideas once confined to academia that the left has poured into the mainstream.

Genuine debate is becoming difficult in America.

Conservatives and centrist or right-leaning Americans are canceled and siloed off from the mainstream; liberals who deviate even moderately from left-wing consensus are subjected to “struggle sessions.”

Weiss’ entire letter is well worth a read, if only because it demonstrates where our cultural revolution is going. And how the left increasingly tolerates no dissent whatsoever.

COMMENTARY BY

Jarrett Stepman is a contributor to The Daily Signal and co-host of The Right Side of History podcast. Send an email to Jarrett. He is also the author of the new book, “The War on History: The Conspiracy to Rewrite America’s Past.” Twitter: .

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Resignation letter to the New York Times of Bari Weiss


A Note for our Readers:

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Signal column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Fake News Field Day in Story about Texas Shooting

Sometimes our criminals at Fraud, Crooks and Criminals will be Americans like the man who allegedly killed little Jazmine Barnes in a drive-by shooting ten days ago.

barnes case white guy
This is the man the New York Times and CNN were already lynching!

The black child was killed by a black thug, but the New York TimesCNN and all the rest had already lynched a “white man with blue eyes” whose likeness had been sent out around the world after other children in the car where Jazmine died told authorities this is what the shooter looked like.

I’ve told some of you previously that I watch CNN the first thing in the morning so that I can get a feel for where they are steering the Leftwing segment of America on any given day.

Oh boy, here they go I thought when that drawing went out and the race hucksters headed to Houston.

CNN actually led one segment of their morning news with the shooting “hate crime” story, even before they launched in to their daily hate fest against the President.

eric black jr
Eric Black Jr arrested in killing of black child

That was until two days ago when, oopsy! turns out the man arrested in the case looks like this.

A second black man has been arrested.

And, guess what! No updates during my early a.m. review of CNN today.

But it wasn’t just CNN, the New York Times had gone on a ‘it has to be a hate crime’ frenzy.

Here is just one segment of a New York Times story (before the arrest of the black thug):

The Harris County Sheriff’s Office believes the gunman fired at random into the car in which Jazmine was riding with her mother and three sisters, a 6-year-old and two teenagers. A bullet struck Jazmine in the head, her mother said.

The police said Wednesday that they still had not identified the gunman. But the case has drawn the attention of national civil rights activists and fueled speculation that the shooting was racially motivated. The gunman is white, the police said, and Jazmine was black.  [Note how the reporter phrases that, I doubt the police said the gunman is white!—ed]

[….]

In another effort to garner the public’s help, Mr. Merritt [family attorney] and Shaun King, a prominent racial justice activist and a columnist at The Intercept, have offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to the gunman’s arrest.

Maybe the New York Times has apologized, but I don’t see it.

Even in a story where the NYT has to admit the truth, they keep ginning up the “hate crime” meme by quoting Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, here:

“Do not be afraid to call this what it seems to be — a hate crime,” Representative Sheila Jackson Lee, a Houston Democrat, told hundreds of people at a rally last week near the site of the killing.

Now, this is the story they are pushing widely. It is about how the poor family got confused.

Meanwhile, speaking of poor families, the family of the white man who may have witnessed the shooting is getting bullied and threatened.  This is from local ABC news:

Family of man wrongfully accused by activist Shaun King in Jazmine Barnes’ shooting speaks out

Will the NYT and CNN follow-up and report that news?  I’m not holding my breath!

Maybe the “white man with blue eyes” should sue the whole bunch of them!

I haven’t done this story (“Justice for Jazmine”) justice. Some feature writer should go through the media coverage of the case and expose in exquisite detail how the frauds in the Leftwing media spin the news.

You know they couldn’t wait to blame this on Donald Trump’s America!

New category at Frauds and Crooks: Media fraud!

Would someone keep an eye on this case and see if major media outlets ever mention it again after this week?

EDITORS NOTE: This column with images from Frauds, Crooks and Criminals is republished with permission. The featured photo is by rawpixel on Unsplash.

NYT allows wealthy British subject to lecture U.S. about ‘fundamental American values’

david-miliband-and-hillar-001

David Miliband with Hillary Clinton.

I want to scream!  I missed this op-ed from January 27th, but the International Rescue Committee is re-tweeting it this morning and it caught my eye.

Here we have David Miliband, the former Labour Party British Foreign Secretary lecturing Donald Trump about “fundamental American values” after Trump announced his Executive Order to keep America safe by temporarily halting immigration from known terrorist hotspots.

And, to make matters worse Miliband’s organization pulls in over $450 million in government grants every year (click here). Some of that money is used to quietly place refugees in American towns and cities and give George Soros Freedom Awards!

Miliband’s annual salary as CEO of the IRC is a whopping $591,846!  But, Leftist media like the NYT never reports any of this!

Here is Miliband’s NYT Op-ed:

President Trump’s executive order suspending the entire resettlement program for 120 days and banning indefinitely the arrival of Syrian refugees is a repudiation of fundamental American values, an abandonment of the United States’ role as a humanitarian leader and, far from protecting the country from extremism, a propaganda gift to those who would plot harm to America.

The next paragraph of Miliband’s Op-ed is a prime example of the selective information people like Miliband put out in their propaganda.

Yes, he is right that most of the refugees entering the U.S. from Iran are non-Muslims (I say most because we do admit some Muslims, why from Iran?). However, he doesn’t tell you that almost 100% of the Syrians admitted to the US are Muslims of both Islamic sects, and only a tiny handful of the persecuted Christians are admitted.

In my data report, here yesterday, I told you that of a recent group of 402 Syrians admitted only 2 are Christians! 

Miliband continues…

The order also suggests that the resettlement program should make persecuted religious minorities a higher priority, implying that they have been neglected in the past. This is incorrect; existing law already places strong emphasis on religious persecution among the criteria for resettlement. For example, most of the refugees from Iran — a Muslim-majority country — who are resettled by my organization are not Muslim.

And, here we go again with this 36 month c***!  18-24 months was the number they previously used and now they are talking about 36 months for refugees waiting (not being screened for 18, 24, or 36 months).  And, in fact, in April 2016, the Obama Administration reduced the Syrian screening down to 3 months, see here.

They never mention that in October 2015 FBI Director Comey said here that there is no way to thoroughly screen the Syrians (and I maintain the Somalis either!) because they come from a failed state with NO RECORDS!

And, here, in September 2016, Senator Sessions and Cruz pulled testimony out of the Obama USCIS head that they must often RELY ON THE STRENGTH OF PERSONAL STORIES because they have no data on the refugee.

Nevertheless, Miliband continues to spin his propaganda!

Compared with other types of immigrants, refugees are the most thoroughly vetted group to enter the United States. The resettlement process can take up to 36 months and involves screenings by the Department of Homeland Security, the F.B.I., the Department of Defense, the State Department and the National Counterterrorism Center and United States intelligence community.

There is more, continue reading here if you want to get fired up for the day!

See our growing archive on Miliband here.

“We will bring this plane down”: Flight 804 Downing Raises Airport Security Questions

Yesterday, we posted on the NatSecDailyBrief about the ACARS-Inmarsat data reports on smoke detected aboard the ill-fated EgyptAir  MSFlight 804.  We noted comments by a commercial pilot on an Aviation Herald article speculating  that there could have been an internal explosion in the nose of aircraft possibly affecting the avionics and fly by wire computer system. That might have caused the downing.

Watch this U.K. Telegraph of Debris recovered from MSFlight 804.

Note what the U.K. Telegraph reported in its blog on the downing  of  MSFlight 804:

Data from the final moments before EgyptAir flight MS804 crashed into the Mediterranean suggest an “internal explosion” tore through the right side of the aircraft, a pilot said last night.

Investigators trying to determine whether the A320 was brought down by terrorism or a technical fault are poring over a series of warnings indicating smoke filled the cabin shortly before it disappeared from radar.

French authorities confirmed that smoke detectors went off aboard the flight a few minutes before it crashed but said it was not clear what caused the smoke or fire.

A commercial pilot with a major European airline told The Telegraph that other parts of the data log suggested that windows in the right side of the cockpit were blown out by an explosion inside the aircraft.

“It looks like the right front and side window were blown out, most probably from inside out,” said the pilot, who flies an A330 similar to the crashed A320 and spoke on condition of anonymity.

[…]

Until investigators find the aircraft’s black boxes, which are still missing in the Mediterranean, the ACARS offers the best sense on what was happening aboard.

Three different warnings showed there were faults in the windows next to the co-pilot, suggesting they could have been blasted outwards by an onboard bomb. That does not mean the explosion came from the cockpit but indicates the right side of the plane was more badly damaged than the left.

The pilot suggested the smoke detectors may have been triggered not fire but by fog which filled the cabin as it lost air pressure in the moments after the explosion.

[…]

According to the Wall Street Journal, people “familiar with the matter” say that the alerts could be an indication of a problem with the flight control system.

While not ruling out a bomb, Bob Mann, a US aviation expert, says the latest data indicate a number of possibilities. “The data could indicate rapid decompression or smoke and a progressive loss of flight control systems.

Note how difficult the French security investigations are looking into the backgrounds of the more than 85,000 workers at the Paris airports and the short interval of conducting the security  sweep on Flight 804:

Although no terrorist group has claimed responsibility, French detectives are examining a pool of around 85,000 people with “red badge” security clearance that gives them access to restricted areas of Charles de Gaulle airport.

The task is complicated by the fact that many work for sub-contractors and turnover is high. Screenings are often limited to checking an employee has no criminal convictions and does not appear on a terror watch list.

Last December around 70 red badges were withdrawn from staff at Charles de Gaulle who were found to have praised the attacks in Paris, prayed at mosques linked to radicalism or showing signs of growing religiosity like refusing to shake hands with women.

A French trade union also warned that short stopovers like that made by Flight 804, which was on the ground a little over an hour, gave little time for security staff to carry out thorough security checks.

Then there were the New York Times reports about graffiti daubed on the aircraft in Cairo back in 2013 saying, “We will bring this plane down”:

It has emerged that the crashed aircraft had once been daubed with graffiti by vandals who wrote: “We will bring this plane down”.

The New York Times reported that the vandalism was done two years ago and was a protest against Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, the Egyptian president who seized power in a coup, rather than a jihadist threat.

The airline went on to fire a number of staff with alleged Muslim Brotherhood sympathies in 2013 as part of a general purge of suspected Islamists after the military takeover.

And in the weeks following the Paris attacks in November, French police said Arabic graffiti such as “Allahu Akbar” (God is great) were found daubed on EasyJet and Vueling planes at Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris and at Lyon airport.

It also emerges that EgyptAir was exempted from a trial of the new French security system for vetting passengers:

Charles de Gaulle airport will begin testing a passenger screening tool known as the passenger name record (PNR) next week. The system, already in use in Britain, identifies passengers whose profiles indicate a potential risk. It cross-references names, addresses and means of payment with police crime and terrorism files.

However, EgyptAir will not be among the eight airlines that will take part in the trial, which the interior minister, Bernard Cazeneuve, says is long overdue.

The system is to become fully operational by the end of the year in France, which has received nearly £14 million in EU aid to finance its introduction.  It can detect passengers who have travelled to countries such as Syria and Yemen, with their return dates.

The evidence keeps piling up that supports the  comments of ex-CIA director Ambassador Woolsey and  investigations by the Lisa Benson Show National Task Force for America that international airports, including those in the US,  are not secure.  That is particularly acute given the difficulty of profiling airport workers with security access to aircraft on the tarmac and now we learn vetting passengers from terrorist hot spots.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in NatSecDailyBrief.

NY Times reports on serious concerns with Muslim refugee terrorists in U.S.

I wonder how many of you saw this story?  It was in the New York Times on Friday (LOL! how many of us bother to read the NYT?), and is actually very useful and informative.

Fourteen refugees, who came in through the UN/U.S. State Dept. Refugee Admissions Program, have been arrested in the last two years on terror charges!

kid next door

Aws Mohammed Younis Al-Jayab

We learned a lot about the alleged terrorist at the heart of the NYT story, Aws Mohammed Younis Al-Jayab, last month at the UK Daily Mail.  He is an Iraqi-born Palestinian who came here as a refugee via Syria.

Longtime readers may remember that Saddam Hussein had invited Palestinians to Iraq and when his government fell, many moved to Syria and the US kindlybegan admitting them to the US as refugees.

This story back in 2009 was big news at the time because we don’t take Palestinians in any large numbers in the Refugee Admissions Program.

Here is what the New York Times said on Friday:

WASHINGTON — The arrest of a California man on charges that he traveled to Syria to fight with terrorist groups, then lied about it to the Department of Homeland Security, offers new ammunition for both sides in the fierce debate over the refugee policy of the Obama administration.

Conservatives and some federal law enforcement officials say the case of the Californian, Aws Mohammed Younis al-Jayab, 23, shows that the refugee program leaves the nation vulnerable to terrorism. But Homeland Security officials and Democrats in Congress contend that his arrest demonstrates that the system works.

The system worked for this guy, but how many more Mohammeds are out there?

Before his arrest, Mr. Jayab seemed like a typical young adult: He liked sports cars, studied computer programming at a community college in Sacramento and worked nights as a security guard.

Farmer015

John J. Farmer Jr.

But the federal authorities have charged that Mr. Jayab, who was born in Iraq and came to the United States as a refugee from Syria, traveled to that war-torn country from late 2013 to early 2014 to fight on the side of terrorist groups and then lied about it to the authorities.

[….]

Still, some members of Congress and security experts say the arrest of Mr. Jayab has forced them to question the screening process. Federal court documents show that at least 14 people who came to the United States as refugees have been arrested on terrorism charges in the last two years, including Mr. Jayab.

“I thought that it was very secure until I saw the arrest in California and Texas,” said John J. Farmer Jr., former senior counsel to the federal commission that investigated the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, who is now a professor at Rutgers. “Now, I have my concerns.”

Continue reading here.

P.S. Rural Montanans do have something to worry about!

EDITORS NOTE: John J. Farmer Jr. bio and photo here: https://law.newark.rutgers.edu/faculty/faculty-profiles/john-j-farmer-jr

Obama Addresses Terror Linked Baltimore Mosque which Practices ‘Gender Apartheid’

President  Obama went to Baltimore for a friendly gathering at the Islamic Center of Baltimore Mosque in Catonsville, Maryland. He was there  to convey a message that Muslims are as American as apple pie. Problem is that he chose a Mosque deep into political Islam, affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood affiliate, the Islamic Society of North America , supporting suicide bombers  and professing  hate  for U.S. ally Israel.  All despite the FBI file sent to the White House confirming this information. No matter. It was a photo op moment to show support for embattled American Muslims  given statements from Republican  hopeful, Donald Trump that he would stop immigration of Muslims.

The scene was replete with introduction by a hijab swathed college student on track for a medical career. The President in his remarks pointed out another  hijab wearing  fencing marvel that may be carrying the U.S. flag at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janiero this summer. The President spoke of the kind comments of  founding Fathers John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson who purportedly included Mohammedans in the ambit of freedom of worship in America guaranteed by our First Amendment.

Problem is that he forgot to mention the real reason Thomas Jefferson had a copy of a Qur’an in his library at Monticello. A Qur’an, upon which , the first elected U.S. Representative Keith Ellison (D-MN) swore a private oath of office on January 4, 2007. I know I passed by his office with a clutch of TV cameramen recording this for posterity. Ellison was at the ISB gathering,  as was the second elected Muslim Congressmen, Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN).  Doubtless, as this was the President’s alleged first visit to an American Mosque, there may have been notables at the Mosque in Catonsville from CAIR and ISNA.  But not too worry this was kumbaya day at the ISB.

Watch the You Tube video of the President’s expansive, yet, cautionary message of support for American Muslims:

American Muslims  that he pointed out  in his remarks  assembled Ford automobiles in Michigan, built the first  continuous Mosque in  Cedar Rapids,, Iowa, served  honorably in the US military and some were buried in the hallowed ground of Arlington National Cemetery. Yes, there were those small pockets of extremists in the Muslim Ummah like ISIS or ISIL as he likes to call it with its self-declared Caliphate in Syria and Iraq. Barbarically beheading Christians, enslaving minority Yazidi women and children, destroying ancient cultures in the name of Allah, their God.  Then there are the extremist Taliban in both Afghanistan and Pakistan killing women, homosexuals and Christian infidels. Oh, we forgot the Mahdist Shia in Tehran who the President makes deals with to prevent a nuclear war, he thinks. Last year, they only executed 1,000 for crimes of gender, homosexuality and heterodox beliefs.

As to the reason why Jefferson had a Qur’an in his library, just recall their encounter in London with the Tripolitanian Ambassador in their roles as US Commissioners trying to understand why the Bey of Tripoli enslaved American sailors he seized along with their ships in the Mediterranean. Note this  Notable and Quotable in the Wall Street Journal:

From a March 28, 1786, letter written by John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, who were American diplomats at the time, to U.S. Secretary of Foreign Affairs John Jay reporting on their conversation in London with the ambassador from Tripoli regarding piracy by the Barbary States:

We took the liberty to make some enquiries concerning the ground of their pretensions to make war upon nations who had done them no injury, and observed that we considered all mankind as our friends who had done us no wrong, nor had given us any provocation.

The Ambassador answered us that it was founded on the laws of their Prophet; that it was written in their Koran; that all nations who should not have acknowledged their authority were sinners; that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as prisoners; and that every Mussulman [Muslim] who was slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise.

Clearly, Adams and Jefferson knew something that President Obama doesn’t choose to admit in public.  That Islam is not the religion of peace and tolerance that its religious theocrats make it out to be.  Subsequently, as the Third President of the US, Jefferson would conduct a covert war that freed American hostages with a few Marines at the fabled ‘walls of Tripoli’ from the likes of the Sharia-mad Bey.

Leo Hohmann at WND, cited an Investigative Project Report by Steve Emerson giving details on why the FBI thought the ISB was a poor choice for the President for this encounter, “Obama.” Hohman cites Emerson  saying:

IPT founder and executive director  Steve Emerson told WND his organization was told by FBI sources that Obama was presented the evidence against the Islamic Society of Baltimore.

According to Emerson’s investigation, federal law enforcement officials told him they were asked about whether the Baltimore mosque had engaged in radical politics or was connected in any way to terrorism in the past.

“They prepared memos for the president’s aides that specifically laid out the sordid history and nexus to terrorism of the Islamic Society of Baltimore,” Emerson told WND.

So what did the president do?

“As he has done so many times in the past, he decided to ignore this evidence and still continue his plans to confer legitimacy on a mosque that has a history of having officials connected to Islamic terrorism and to this day still has officials making outrageously pro-terrorist statements that would seem to conflict with the president’s policies,” Emerson said.

The mosque is affiliated with the Islamic Society of North America or ISNA, which has its own sordid history.

ISNA was started by members of the international Muslim Brotherhood in the 1980s. The Brotherhood, founded in Egypt in 1928, is banned in many countries as an extremist organization.

“One can only conclude that the selection of this mosque by the president was made as part of his consistent policy to not even utter the term ‘radical Islam’ and the simultaneous policy of inviting only radical Islamist groups and leaders to the White House that FBI documents clearly show were derived from the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas,” Emerson told WND.

But there was another problem with the  choice of the ISB, the occurrence of gender apartheid prior to this auspicious occasion.

The media was  atwitter about the President’s  presentation at the Islamic Society of Baltimore. All of those media pundits should read this New York Times op ed by a leader of the Muslim Reform Movement (MRM), Asra Nomani and Ify Okoye, a disaffected member of the Mosque, about the gender apartheid practiced at the ISB, “Obama’s mosque visit demonstrates tacit acceptance of a form of gender apartheid.”

We have interviewed colleagues of Asra Nomani, Dr. M. Zhudi Jasser and Canadian leader of MRM, Raheel Raza who recently returned from a successful trip to Israel on The Lisa Benson Show. We hope to bring back Raza and introduce Ms. Nomani to discuss what the MRM is advocating and doing. Note what Nomani and Okoye wrote:

At the Islamic Society of Baltimore this past Sunday, the air was filled with the scent of Sherwin-Williams paint that workers were rolling onto the walls of the run-down balcony section where women and girls are usually segregated, unable to see the imam unless they peek over the balcony’s edge. A sign outside the door to the balcony said, “STOP Please. No Shoes. No Strollers. No Diaper Change. Beyond this point.”

Asra slipped into the mosque’s main hall to join the “halaqa,” or study circle. There, the study circle leader, teaching a half dozen men gathered around him, talked about the virtues of the first Muslim community in Medina, saying that a society isn’t “civilized” just because it’s technological.

Then, a young man, wearing a T-shirt emblazoned “Who Do You Love?” piped up, “So that means the West isn’t civilized.”

“That’s right,” the study circle leader said.

Another man railed against the West and its “atheists.”

Asra took a deep breath, listening to the sound of the crew white-washing the mosque for the president’s visit. “That’s a very unfair conclusion,” she said. “You are sitting in the West and railing against the West as not being civilized? It is not fair to make the assumption that the West ‘isn’t civilized.’”

The men tried to backtrack. They spoke with more nuance, before the study leader digressed again into the idea that those who aren’t Muslim act out of “self-interest,” while Muslims act out of an “order from God to do righteousness,” a point that Asra also politely refuted as motivated by “self-interest” and as an unfair representation of the many good people who aren’t Muslim.

As women and girls, we should be supported by policies that allow us to be part of such conversations. The president can support this urgent cause by speaking out against gender segregation in American mosques. In the spirit of the civil rights moment when whites stood with blacks, we hope men and women will refuse the privilege that “interfaith” events give them, and, in act of solidarity, stand outside with us on Johnnycake Road and the other pathways leading to the mosques in our world, advocating for equal rights for all.

So,  the President did what he wanted to do  with the ISB visit; show solidarity with the plight of American Muslims, sidelined by GOP hopeful Donald Trump.  He chose to avoid the advice of the FBI busily tracking down and arresting ISIS inspired lone wolves out to kill Americans on the streets here in the US that he Mosque leaders consorted with terrorist networks. That would upset  the President’s  alliance with the Muslim Brotherhood seeking their active participation in countering violent extremism and conducted a less than strenuous war against the Islamic State inspiring  tens of thousands from across the Ummah to join and practice the pure Islam in the self declared Caliphate.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review. The featured image is of President Obama at the Islamic Center of Baltimore in Catonsville, Maryland, February 3, 2016 – Source: Reuters.

Massive Protests in Holland against Muslim Migrant Invasion

The New York Times covered a protest rally Saturday by Geert Wilders, leader of the Freedom Party in The Hague Parliament in the Dutch community of Spijkenisse handing out cans of pepper spray. That was a send up on the Muslim male migrant misogyny in Cologne Germany and other German and European cities by what he calls: “Islamic testosterone bombs”.  As if to verify this threat the Imam in Cologne, Germany said the women who suffered sexual assaults and worse on New Year’s Eve by upwards of 1,000 Muslim males gathered at the main railway station brought upon themselves: “they were half naked and wore perfume.” Absurd! They were attired in warm clothing. Doubtless, the Imam thought they should have been immured in tip to toe niqabs. We had posted on the threats facing Dutch and other European women when Wilders and a fellow PVV Hague parliamentarian raised questions of the ruling coalition led by PM Mark Rutte were doing to protect Dutch women.

geert wilder facebook post protestThe New York Times report chronicled this latest protest rally by Wilders, “Dutch Lawmaker Wilders Gaining Support Amid Migrant Crisis:”

Wilders, surrounded by bodyguards and police, visited a market in the largely blue-collar town of Spijkenisse on Saturday to hand out the sprays, which contained red paint. Amid stalls selling vegetables, fish, flowers and bicycle parts, Wilders got a rock-star welcome from dozens of supporters, while a small group of protesters chanted and waved placards including one that read, “Refugees are welcome, racism is not.”

The publicity stunt fits into Wilders’ uncompromising anti-immigrant, anti-Islam rhetoric that has propelled him to the top of Dutch opinion polls, just over a year away from parliamentary elections.

In between shaking hands and posing for selfies with supporters, the Freedom Party leader said that, if elected, he would, “close the borders immediately and have no more asylum seekers. We just cannot afford to have more. The Dutch people in a big majority don’t want it and we cannot afford it and it makes our people and women only more unsafe.”

His message is gaining traction here amid the Europe-wide migrant surge and following attacks by Islamic extremists in Paris last year. It echoes Republican front-runner Donald Trump’s call for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the United States and is similar to other populist, nationalist groups in Europe like Marine Le Pen’s National Front in France.

“The tendencies across Europe are very similar,” said University of Amsterdam political science professor Wouter van der Brug. “Across Europe, right-wing populist parties are picking up support as a result of the asylum crisis that we’re facing now, and also as a result of terrorist attacks.”

Leontine Maris was one of the first women to get a spray from Wilders on Saturday.

The 53-year-old said she votes for him though she disagrees with some of his more extreme comments. She said she was afraid not just of migrants, but also Dutch men.

“The whole society is going down the drain,” she said.

As Wilders’ popularity soars on the back of such disenchantment, Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s two-party coalition is in a slump, losing ground mainly to Wilders.

“Wilders is getting support across different layers of society,” Van der Brug said.

Whether Wilders is able to parlay his current popularity into parliamentary seats next year and a tilt at power in the splintered Dutch parliament remains to be seen. He propped up Rutte’s first administration, a minority coalition of the Liberal Party and Christian Democrats, from 2010-2012, but walked out amid drawn out negotiations over austerity measures. Two days later, the government collapsed.

That decision could yet come back to haunt Wilders.

“The only logical coalition he could form would be with the same parties again and I think it’s quite unlikely they will do this again with him because of the negative experience they have in the past,” Van der Brug said. “They don’t really trust him.”

Rutte has ruled out cooperating with Wilders unless the Freedom Party leader takes back comments made in 2014 that he would see to it that there were fewer Moroccans in the Netherlands. Those same comments also landed Wilders in trouble with Dutch prosecutors, who plan to put him on trial on charges of discrimination.

Continue reading the main story

Despite the political naysayers, Dutch voters have come out in support of Wilders. There have been protests at Dutch reception centers amid reports that some migrants have left the Netherlands because they did not receive a warm welcome and had problems trying to apply for family reunification. The estimated annual cost of handling the flood of Muslim migrants in Holland fleeing conflicts from hotspots in the Middle East, South Asia and Africa is nearly 1 billion Euros. Wilders’ Kafkaesque show trial in The Hague occasioned by his “fewer Moroccans” comment at a 2015 campaign rally is scheduled for March 2016.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review.

The Barbarianism of Paternalism by Aaron Ross Powell

Lots of people do lots of things I wish they wouldn’t. And lots of people don’t do lots of things I wish they would. In fact, I’m rather certain the world would be a better place for me and people just like me if more people were willing to go along with my desires and tastes, instead of stubbornly pursuing their own thing.

Take drinking tons of soda. For the life of me, I can’t figure out why people consider sugar water a multiple-times-a-day beverage. It’s like wanting to pour chocolate sauce on everything, or eat brownies with every meal. In short, to my sensibilities, it’s gross. And it’s way less healthy than drinking water — which tastes a whole lot better, too.

Part of being civilized — arguably most of being civilized — is recognizing that different people do things differently and that such differences deserve respect. Respecting difference means allowing behaviors we find disagreeable, provided those behaviors don’t cause us harm. This covers big stuff like religious toleration — those people of other faiths sure do eat weird things and have a funny way of talking, but that’s their business — to, yes, even the dreadful behavior of drinking half-a-dozen Cokes a day.

Of course, civilized people aren’t prevented from making their opinions known. I just did, with my quips about soda, and if I happen to see you drinking one, I’m free to tell you what I think. (Though I risk coming across as an officious jerk if I’m not careful.) What civilized people don’t do is hit each other with clubs over such differences.

That’s why the paternalism Sarah Conly offers three cheers for in the pages of the New York Times amounts to a rah-rah for barbarism. Conly, an assistant professor of philosophy at Bowdoin College and author of Against Autonomy: Justifying Coercive Paternalism, wants those upstanding chaps of the NYPD to flex their might to stop Americans from getting so fat.

To support her preference for state interference, Conly turns to the great classical liberal John Stuart Mill.

In his great work, On Liberty, Mill advances the “harm principle” as a crucial limit on the authority of the state:

The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilised community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not a sufficient warrant. He cannot rightfully be compelled to do or forbear because it will be better for him to do so, because it will make him happier, because, in the opinions of others, to do so would be wise, or even right.

Which sounds pretty bad for the soda ban. But not so fast, Conly says. She tells us Mill endorsed preventing our freely chosen actions “when we are acting out of ignorance and doing something we’ll pretty definitely regret. You can stop someone from crossing a bridge that is broken, he said, because you can be sure no one wants to plummet into the river.”

From that, she gets to the idea that, because people underestimate the dangers of drinking lots of soda, they’re (often/usually) acting out of ignorance when they drink it, and so we’re justified in at the very least making it much more difficult for them to consume the stuff in bulk.

But read the full passage from Mill:

If either a public officer or any one else saw a person attempting to cross a bridge which had been ascertained to be unsafe, and there were no time to warn him of his danger, they might seize him and turn him back, without any real infringement of his liberty; for liberty consists in doing what one desires, and he does not desire to fall into the river.

Nevertheless, when there is not a certainty, but only a danger of mischief, no one but the person himself can judge of the sufficiency of the motive which may prompt him to incur the risk: in this case, therefore (unless he is a child, or delirious, or in some state of excitement or absorption incompatible with the full use of the reflecting faculty), he ought, I conceive, to be only warned of the danger; not forcibly prevented from exposing himself to it.

It seems Conly left out the bit about such interference requiring first “no time to warn him of his danger.” Nor does she seem at all bothered by the important limit that, “when there is not a certainty, but only a danger of mischief, no one but the person himself can judge of the sufficiency of the motive which may prompt him to incur the risk.”

Even accounting for the cognitive biases — which Conly says, if only he’d known about them, would’ve led Mill to support soda nannyism — it’s difficult to square the harm caused by a large Coke with the imminent danger and certainty of effect needed to override the harm principle.

In fact, a great deal of On Liberty seems perfectly aimed at exposing the immorality of Conly’s paternalism. She should’ve read not only the rest of that passage, but also the rest of On Liberty. Mill warns of an increasing inclination to stretch unduly the powers of society over the individual, both by the force of opinion and even by that of legislation: and as the tendency of all the changes taking place in the world is to strengthen society, and diminish the power of the individual, this encroachment is not one of the evils which tend spontaneously to disappear, but, on the contrary, to grow more and more formidable.

The disposition of mankind, whether as rulers or as fellow-citizens to impose their own opinions and inclinations as a rule of conduct on others, is so energetically supported by some of the best and by some of the worst feelings incident to human nature, that it is hardly ever kept under restraint by anything but want of power; and as the power is not declining, but growing, unless a strong barrier of moral conviction can be raised against the mischief, we must expect, in the present circumstances of the world, to see it increase.

This “mischief” results from that urge to have others prefer the same thing we prefer, to have others behave the way we behave. But, like I said above and like Conly seems to forget, civilization means recognizing the primacy of individual choice, even choices we think silly.

There is no reason that all human existences should be constructed on some one, or some small number of patterns. If a person possesses any tolerable amount of common-sense and experience, his own mode of laying out his existence is the best, not because it is the best in itself, but because it is his own mode.

Human beings are not like sheep; and even sheep are not undistinguishably alike. A man cannot get a coat or a pair of boots to fit him, unless they are either made to his measure, or he has a whole warehouseful to choose from: and is it easier to fit him with a life than with a coat, or are human beings more like one another in their whole physical and spiritual conformation than in the shape of their feet?

If it were only that people have diversities of taste, that is reason enough for not attempting to shape them all after one model. But different persons also require different conditions for their spiritual development; and can no more exist healthily in the same moral, than all the variety of plants can in the same physical, atmosphere and climate.

The same things which are helps to one person towards the cultivation of his higher nature, are hindrances to another. The same mode of life is a healthy excitement to one, keeping all his faculties of action and enjoyment in their best order, while to another it is a distracting burthen, which suspends or crushes all internal life.

Such are the differences among human beings in their sources of pleasure, their susceptibilities of pain, and the operation on them of different physical and moral agencies, that unless there is a corresponding diversity in their modes of life, they neither obtain their fair share of happiness, nor grow up to the mental, moral, and aesthetic stature of which their nature is capable.

Is drinking large sodas a way of life, though? Conly mocks the idea: “Large cups of soda as symbols of human dignity? Really?” But consider that if you drink 32 ounces of Coca-Cola, you’ll rack up 388 calories. A 20-ounce Iced White Chocolate Mocha from Starbucks has 500. Both aren’t good for you, but the Mocha’s worse. The difference is that the kinds of people who want to use government to save ignorant Americans from the harms of soft drinks are the kinds of people who prefer an Iced White Chocolate Mocha to a Coca-Cola.

That Conly calls for a ban on Cokes and not Mochas indicates that what really bothers her is the behavior of those low-brow folks who slam giant soft drinks, but not so much the worse behavior of the middle-class and educated who just can’t start the day without a latte. About this tendency to use ourselves as the moral yardstick, Mill noted, “our idea of improvement chiefly consists in persuading or forcing other people to be as good as ourselves.”

So the real trouble is people aren’t acting like Conly — or the majority Conly imagines agrees with her — would like them to. Thus it’s time to call in the law. To which Mill says this:

A theory of “social rights,” the like of which probably never before found its way into distinct language — being nothing short of this — that it is the absolute social right of every individual, that every other individual shall act in every respect exactly as he ought; that whosoever fails thereof in the smallest particular, violates my social right, and entitles me to demand from the legislature the removal of the grievance.

So monstrous a principle is far more dangerous than any single interference with liberty; there is no violation of liberty which it would not justify; it acknowledges no right to any freedom whatever, except perhaps to that of holding opinions in secret, without ever disclosing them: for the moment an opinion which I consider noxious, passes any one’s lips, it invades all the “social rights” attributed to me by the Alliance.

The doctrine ascribes to all mankind a vested interest in each other’s moral, intellectual, and even physical perfection, to be defined by each claimant according to his own standard.

To which Conly likely offers another three cheers. Especially when the individual rights she wants violated in the name of social rights are so, well,dumb. “As irritating as it may initially feel, the soda regulation is a good idea,” she writes. “It’s hard to give up the idea of ourselves as completely rational. We feel as if we lose some dignity. But that’s the way it is, and there’s no dignity in clinging to an illusion.”

Writing in The Subjection of Women — regarding a different group then burdened with the charge of irrationality — Mill had this to say about a Conly-style disregard for personal choice: “The yoke is naturally and necessarily humiliating to all persons, except the one who is on the throne, together with, at most, the one who expects to succeed to it.”

Conly may cheer the power of the throne, but the civilized among us should not.

This essay first appeared at Libertarianism.org.

Aaron Ross PowellAaron Ross Powell

Aaron Ross Powell is a research fellow and editor of Libertarianism.org.

Time for a March in Washington, D.C. to Stop the Iran Nuke Deal

President Obama may be on a vacation with the family, however his West Wing political operatives are busily trying to line up Democrat votes in both the Senate and House enabling him to veto anticipated Republican majority resolutions.

While New York Democrat Senator Charles Schumer has come out against the pact, he demurred from active advocacy of his position. The Hill noted in its Whip List count that Rep. Pete Roskam (R-IL) has signed up 218 of 243 Republican colleagues for a resolution opposing the Iran nuclear pact. The Hill Whip List vote tally, as of  August 14, 2015, on the Democrat side of aisle shows Democrats divided with 48 “Yes”, 16 leaning in that direction, 11 “No,”  2 leaning towards “No” and 58 “undecideds.”  The resolutions are likely to be voted on by both Chambers before September 17th following Congress reconvening just after Labor Day.

The ultimate choice of which way the undecideds will go will depend on what they learn from Town Hall meetings and constituent calls, tweets and emails.  If respected polls are any indication, millions of Americans have voiced concerns that Iran’s track record as a cheater on nuclear weapons developments and state support for terrorism preclude trusting it.  The JCPOA will immediately release tens of billions for Iran to expand hegemony in the Middle East. In  10 years it will add over 1 trillion dollars in additional sanctions relief to Iran and the Mullahs that run it.

Already the international sanctions regime has been shredded by Iranian Quds Force commander Soleimani’s  violation  of travel bans and purchases of Russian advanced air defense systems and Chinese stealth  fighter jets. Italian, French and other Foreign Ministers have led trade delegations to Tehran to ink billions in pre-approval deals. Just this week, the Swiss lifted some of their financial sanctions, doubtless both the Russians and Chinese will follow suit, as their sequestered funds comprise the majority of off shore resources .  Moreover, Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif is endeavoring to broker the Syrian Crisis.  With the nuclear deal, the Islamic regime is gaining traction in the Middle East courtesy of Obama’s outreach and the pending nuclear pact.

While many Congressional Democrats and liberal media pundits contend that the nuclear pact is not perfect, they suggest it is better than the alternative.  Orde Kittrie, Senior Fellow and leading expert on non proliferation law and policy at the Washington, DC Foundation for Defense of Democracies  in a Wall Street Journal  opinion piece, yesterday  contends that  the unsigned political agreement can be and should be amended by Congress. He cites as evidence  the 200 plus incidents, include ing nuclear test ban and arms control agreements with Russia during the Cold War era. There is also the recent 2009 nuclear cooperation agreement with the United Arab Emirates, where Congress demanded changes and material improvement to international agreements before granting consent.

Eli Broad, Matthew Weiner and Norman Lear

Eli Broad, Matthew Weiner and Norman Lear Hollywood Jewish Backers of Iran Nuclear Pact Source: Hollywood Reporter.

Testimonials from Prominent Hollywood Jewish Backers of Iran Nuclear Deal

The White House has been bombarding media with ‘testimonials’ in favor of the Iran nuclear deal. There was one from three dozen retired generals and admirals, another from 29 of the nation’s leading scientists, and still yet another from 100 former ambassadors.   The argument from the former senior officers in the military was the agreement is “the most effective means currently available to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons.” The scientists called the Iran deal “technically sound, stringent and innovative”.

The other voice heard from was the liberal Jewish Hollywood mogul crowd and J Street rabbis’ who bought an ad in the L.A Jewish Journal, and other newspapers of record. Israel National News (INN) noted  among them were leading campaign financial bundlers for Obama’s Presidential elections:

Among the seven lead signatories are billionaire philanthropist Eli Broad; Walt Disney Concert Hall architect Frank Gehry; and legendary TV writer-producer Norman Lear.

[…]

“I just felt that some of the mainstream Jewish organizations weren’t speaking on behalf of a large segment of the community that has a different point of view,” Matthew Velkes told The Hollywood Reporter, adding that LA’s Jewish population is “as diverse a community as one might imagine.”

INN drew attention to the letter signed by these Hollywood Jewish supporters of Obama published in the Hollywood Reporter:

We appreciate that many have reasonable concerns about the risks of a complex nuclear weapons development agreement with an untrustworthy adversary like Iran. We too hold these concerns, but the deal that was reached is not founded on trust; it is grounded in rigorous inspections and monitoring.

They view killing the deal as a “tragic mistake.”

us energy secretray

U.S. Energy Secretary Earnest Moniz

Secretary of Energy Moniz discusses the Iran deal on a National Jewish Federation Webcast

I watched a National Jewish Federation live interview with Secretary of Energy, Dr. Earnest Moniz, extolling the virtues of the Iran nuclear deal from technical aspects. Retired MIT physics professor Moniz knows the subject well.  He was an official in the Clinton Administration during the failed attempt to reign in North Korea from achieving nuclear breakout. The on-line audience was a third of the 10,000 viewers  when Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu expounded his thesis about why the nuclear pact was a bad deal given existential threats to both the US and Israel.

The Hill cited Moniz saying on the webcast that the Iran nuclear deal “would aid in fighting terrorism.”  The Administration’s primary concern he said was to cut off all paths for Iran from achieving a bomb. A path, he acknowledged, currently would take less than two to three months to achieve with the 80 tons of fissile material on hand.  However, he suggested that when the existing stock of fissile material was reduced by 98 percent under the current proposal it would set back by a decade  industrializing nuclear development.  He also told the on-line audience that there were no secret side deals.  Rather he characterized them as confidential arrangements between the IAEA and Iran that would allow for close monitoring of Iran nuclear developments.  He suggested, when asked by viewer, not to worry about the Parchin military test site, as the Energy Department’s labs have developed the technical means of identifying even trace amounts of nuclear residue. The Problem is the Ayatollah has barred the IAEA and any US inspectors from visiting Parchin and ‘known’ military development sites.   Further, Moniz suggested the US was supplying the 24/7 monitoring technology to the IAEA covering the entire Iranian nuclear production pathway from mine through enrichment.

Watch Secretary Moniz’s Jewish National Federation Vimeo video presentation:

ambassidor yoriWhat the polls of Americans show.

Yoram Ettinger, former Israeli Congressional liaison with the rank of Ambassador, in an  Israel Hayom column highlighted the findings of several polls. They reflected Americans’ deep concern about the nuclear deal with Iran.  Here are the highlights of what Ettinger addressed in his Israel Hayom column:

According to RealClearPolitics’ most recent polls, a major wedge has evolved between the US constituents, on the one hand, and US policy-makers, on the other hand, when it comes to foreign policy and national security: a mere 38.5% approval rating of President Obama’s foreign policy.  For instance, a CNN poll documented a majority disapproval of Obama’s handling of Islamic terrorism, and a majority backing the use of military force against ISIS.

The voters’ deep distrust of the Ayatollahs is documented by the annual Gallup poll of Country Rating.  …  Iran is rated as the second least favored country by Americans with 11% favorability, ahead of North Korea – 9% and behind Afghanistan (14%), Syria (14%) and the Palestinian Authority (17%), compared with Israel’s 70%.

In addition, Gallup shows that 77% and 84% of US constituents regard nuclearized Ayatollahs and international terrorism, respectively, as “critical threats.”  Gallup indicates that “Americans’ views on [the Ayatollahs] have remained unchanged for 26 years.”

According to the August 3, 2015 poll, conducted by Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, “American voters oppose the nuclear pact negotiated with Iran 57 to 28 percent, with only lukewarm support from Democrats and overwhelming opposition for Republicans and independent voters.”

nyt times front page

New York Times Front Page April 16, 2002.

The 2002 Washington Rally to Stand with Israel.

I recently exchanged thoughts with the AIPAC Florida regional director about a possible march in Washington, just after Labor Day when Congress reconvenes to address the looming vote on the Iran deal. I recalled vividly my personal impressions of being in the multitude estimated at over 100,000 at the Stand with Israel Rally on April 15, 2002 gathered to hear speakers on the back lawn of the US Capitol.  The rally was the genius of current executive vice chairman of the Conference of President of Major American Jewish Organizations, Malcolm Hoenlein, that despite daunting logistics and busing arrangements organized the event in less than five days.

That rally occurred in the wake of the Second Intifada that witnessed the horrific suicide bombing on March 27, 2002, the Passover Massacre at the Park Hotel in Netanya, Israel.  30 elderly holocaust survivors were killed and over 140 injured and maimed.  The Washington Rally in 2002 was directed at Palestinian terrorism occurring less than a year after 9/11 in lower Manhattan.  Clearly, there was solidarity among Christians and Jews gathered in support of Israel who listened to former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, former House Minority Leader Richard Gephardt (D-MO) and  Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV), now departing Senate Minority leader. The small contingent of pro-Palestinian advocates were swamped, but not abused by the attentive crowd.  Pictures and reports of the rally were front page items the following day in newspapers of record like the Los Angeles Times, Washington Post and the New York Times. In the wake of the 2002 Washington Rally Christians United for Israel was formed.   I suggested to the Florida AIPAC regional director, we needed to do that again, now.

The March to Save America in Washington, September 9, 2015

Serendipitously, Tom Harb, an Orlando businessman and leader in the Lebanese diaspora, sent me an email introducing the group currently organizing a March to Save America for which it has been given a permit in Washington, scheduled for Wednesday, September 9th. That led to a discussion with a  Los Angeles-based spokesperson for the March.  She indicated that starting this weekend and early next week, the March organizers will issue press releases and break news of the March on a major cable news network.  She referred me to their website at: www.marchtosaveamerica.org with a statement from founding Committee Chairman, Barry Nussbaum. Here are some key excerpts:

Congress is about to vote on a deal with Iran that essentially consents to their belligerent military goals, with some delays specified.  …. There is no historical precedent for Iran’s compliance.  Nor, does the deal require “anytime, anywhere” inspection.  Rigorous verification of Iran’s adherence to the deal is virtually impossible.

[…]

The deal does not require Iran to materially dismantle its nuclear infrastructure while it includes, practically speaking,  the irreversible dismantling of the sanctions that brought Iran to the negotiating table in the first place.  Easy circumvention of the deal’s restrictions can only lead to the war that Iran has promised.  A majority of Americans (2/3 as of August 2015) have learned enough details to oppose it.

[…]

The only way to stop the deal, at this stage, is to put major pressure on Congress to reject it.  While many organizations are working tirelessly through lobbying individual Members of Congress to stop the deal, we feel that the strongest statement America can make is to unite through a march on Washington: The March To Save America, September 9, 2015.

Stay tuned for developments! Watch this brief YouTube video on The March to Save America:

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review.