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VIRGINIA: Muslim professing love for Allah murders two, county attorney says we ‘may never know’ his motive

Ivan Maertens Aramayo is Ayanna Maertens Griffin’s father. In this Washington Post report, consistent with the establishment media’s never-ending mission to exonerate Islam from all crimes done in its name and in accord with its teachings, he offers two quotations from the Qur’an, apparently in order to establish that what Mohamed Aly did was completely inconsistent with his “professed love for Allah.”

The first one (“And do not kill one another…”) is Qur’an 4:29. The full verse is: “O you who believe, do not squander your wealth among yourselves in vanity, except in a trade by mutual consent, and do not kill yourselves [or one another]. Indeed, Allah is always merciful to you.” It is thus clearly addressed to “you who believe,” and does not override the Qur’an’s thrice-repeated imperative to kill unbelievers (2:191, 4:89, 9:5).

The other quote is Qur’an 5:32, which is one of the most oft-quoted verses of the Qur’an, the one that Western non-Muslim leaders refer to frequently in order to establish that Islam is a religion of peace. There is, however, less to it than Western leaders and Islamic apologists claim. It is not a general prohibition of killing: there are big exceptions to the prohibition on killing, for “manslaughter or corruption on the earth.” Also, this prohibition is not a general command, but is specifically directed at the children of Israel. After it was given, “many of them committed excesses on earth,” so all this passage is really saying is that Allah gave a command to the children of Israel and they transgressed against it. Some Islamic authorities interpret this passage in a supremacist manner, as applying only to Muslims. The eighth-century Muslim jurist Sa’id bin Jubayr is said to have explained: “He who allows himself to shed the blood of a Muslim, is like he who allows shedding the blood of all people. He who forbids shedding the blood of one Muslim, is like he who forbids shedding the blood of all people.” Then 5:33 continues from 5:32 and makes clear the dire punishments that are prescribed for the corruption and transgressions of the children of Israel, and a warning to the Jews to stop their bad behavior. Seen in its light, this celebrated passage, Qur’an 5:32, is explaining what must be done with Jews who reject the messenger and commit the vague sin of spreading corruption on earth. Contrary to popular belief in the West, the passage is not dictating lofty moral principles.

Meanwhile, is anyone even looking into the possibility that Mohamed Aly’s murders of Ayanna Maertens Griffin and Ntombo Joel Bianda may be tied to his “love for Allah”? Or has such an investigation been dismissed out of hand as “Islamophobic”?

“Nearly a year after a young couple were killed, a guilty plea provides few answers,” by Rachel Weiner, Washington Post, January 4, 2021 (thanks to Darcy):

…Ayanna Maertens Griffin, 18, and her boyfriend, Ntombo Joel Bianda, 21, were shot to death in southern Halifax County nearly a year ago. An 18-year-old student at Alexandria’s T.C. Williams High School was quickly arrested and confessed. Mohamed Aly pleaded guilty in December to first-degree murder counts and sentenced to four life terms, but his reasons for killing two acquaintances remain a mystery.

“One of the most painful aspects of this case is that the family may never know Aly’s motive to murder their loved ones. We are all left asking, why?” Halifax Commonwealth’s Attorney Tracy Quackenbush Martin said in a statement. “We may never have an answer to that question.”…

After the arrest, Maertens Aramayo had looked at Aly’s social media pages and saw that the teenager professed love for Allah. A Roman Catholic himself, he studied theology, and what he knew about Islam gave him an opening. He offered two quotes from the Koran:

“And do not kill one another, for God is indeed merciful unto you” and “Whoever kills an innocent life, it is as if he has killed all of humanity.”

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

How an ISIS Member Got Past Immigration and Became a U.S. Citizen

Over a thousand Iraqi refugees have been resettled in Portland.

The year that the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Trump administration’s Islamic terror state travel ban, an Iraqi member of ISIS applied for American citizenship.

Hawazen Sameer Mothafar didn’t have much to worry about. Not only was he already living in the United States, but under political pressure, Iraq had been taken off the travel ban list.

And no one would have suspected Mothafar of being an ISIS terrorist. He was in a wheelchair.

When Mothafar was asked at his immigration interview this year whether he was involved with a terrorist organization, he must have thought it was a formality. But three months later, Mothafar was under arrest, charged with lying to a government agency, and aiding ISIS.

Mothafar not only managed to get through an immigration interview while denying any terrorist ties, but he spoke in court through an Arabic translator, suggesting a poor grasp of English.

Not only did our immigration system make an alleged ISIS member a citizen, but took an immigrant with nothing to offer this country, who doesn’t even speak the language, and who, according to his lawyer, has to be cared for by his family, and welcomed him in.

Over a thousand Iraqi refugees have been resettled in Portland, Oregon. The small city of Troutdale near Portland, once an all-American locale perfect for picture postcards, has absorbed some of the spillover. And there was nothing all-American about Mothafar.

Mothafar hadn’t come to Troutdale for the annual summerfest parade (cancelled this year because of the pandemic) or hiking past waterfalls. When he came into town under the great ‘Gateway to the Gorge’ arch that’s Troutdale’s claim to fame, he was coming for Jihad.

While Mothafar is disabled, he could still use a computer. And that’s what he did.

A senior ISIS official said that when the Islamic terrorist group needed new email and social media accounts, it was Mothafar’s job to get “new accounts when we needed new accounts as soon as possible.”

But Mothafar was allegedly doing a lot more than just providing tech support for the Jihad.

Mothafar claimed that he had been an ISIS supporter since 2014 when the Islamic terror group first gained worldwide attention. Last year, he made the ba’yat pledge, an oath of allegiance to the Caliph of ISIS, who would be caught hiding out and killed by the Trump administration later that same year, binding him to full unquestioning obedience to ISIS and to its leader. Such oaths are often taken before its members make some larger commitment to the terror group.

Earlier that year, Mothafar had ambiguously told an ISIS supporter that he wouldn’t use his real name because, “if published for the foundation, it could mean 4 terror.”

But in 2015, Mothafar had already been working on the ISIS media operation. He initially ran ISIS chat rooms and channels, but he later began working on Al-Anfal’s Jihadist propaganda.

Al-Anfal is an ISIS online media outlet, but literally means the spoils of war. That chapter of the Koran has been used as code for campaigns of extermination against non-Muslims and different Islamic sects and populations. ISIS, many of whose members and leaders had come out of the ranks of Saddam Hussein’s Baath Party, embraced Al-Anfal as a promise that its Jihad would echo the brutal Al-Anfal of Mohammed and of Saddam Hussein in his Anfal massacres.

The Koranic chapter of Al-Anfal contains some of the most brutal verses in the Koran, including its call for beheading,

“I will cast dread into the hearts of the unbelievers. Strike off their heads,” one verse declares.

When Al-Anfal launched in the fall of 2017, Mothafar “edited, produced, published, and disseminated” the Jihadist publication with its call for the mass murder of non-Muslims.

That included Americans.

The first issue featured a chart of the best places to stab victims in the “sensitive areas of the body”. “Effective Stabbing Techniques,” like the other Al-Anfal Jihadist propaganda, was coming through a publishing process that took it, not through Baghdad, but through Oregon.

The December issue featured an article titled, “How Does a Detonator Work”, and a picture of a burning Statue of Liberty with the caption, “Soon in the Heart of Your Lands.”

Next year, Mothafar was assembling pictures of explosives and western cities, messaging, “the images of destroyed infidel cities will be useful.” Propaganda like this played a crucial role in the alarmed responses to sophisticated ISIS posters threatening attacks on America.

Some of these posters warned that the ISIS terrorists were among us. What they did not mention was that one of these terrorists was in a wheelchair and living near Portland.

And was waiting to apply for American citizenship.

Right after the hearing, Mothafar was set free on the condition that he doesn’t “disseminate any information in support of any designated terrorist organization”, or leave Oregon.

And so the same system that allowed Mothafar to spread his hate set him loose again.

Removing Iraq from the list of travel ban countries was made for political reasons to avoid offending its government. Iraq is the epicenter of ISIS and of Islamic terrorism. The countries with the most Muslim refugees are also generally the ones with the worst terrorist problems.

Mothafar’s immigration paperwork, mentioned in the indictment, meant filling out a form that asks prospective citizens whether they’ve ever been associated with the Communist Party (to my knowledge, no one has recently been indicted for lying about this), any “totalitarian party” (a dubious category), or a “terrorist organization”.

There are repeated mentions of Nazi Germany: a laudable if belated move that began long after most of the Nazi war criminals were already living here, and one that is no longer relevant because few Nazi war criminals are likely to be moving to America at this late date.

There is still no mention of ISIS or any Islamic terrorist group. The immigration paperwork hardly required Mothafar to lie because its questions are dated, some to the 40s or 50s, others with their obsession with guerrillas and paramilitary units to the Latin America of the 80s.

A generation that has made Islamic terrorism into the scourge of the free world is hardly reflected in our immigration system which is still screening for Communists, Nazis, and Latin American guerrilas and paramilitary units. It’s a failure that sums up our failed response to 9/11.

There is only one single mention of terrorism in the form and it doesn’t reference Islam.

The only reason Mothafar got nailed for, among other things, making false statements in his immigration form and his citizenship interview, is that the authorities were already watching him. And based on the use of FISA surveillance in his case, it’s likely that he was accidentally swept up while the United States was monitoring ISIS members operating in Iraq and Syria.

Our immigration system hasn’t adapted to dealing with Islamic terrorism. And it’s not acting in the best interests of Americans. If it were, Mothafar, in a wheelchair, cared for by his parents, would never have been a candidate for immigration or citizenship in the United States.

Americans felt sorry for Mothafar. And, as usual, they paid the price.

Now, after, no doubt, spending a small fortune on caring for Mothafar over the years, the taxpayers will spend an even larger fortune on his trial, and then, probably, on his imprisonment, at which point he’ll become a full-time burden on the taxpayers, and then on his life after prison.

None of this would have been necessary if the United States would stop taking in Muslim refugees from terror states and then putting them through an immigration process that hardly even recognizes that we’ve spent a generation fighting Islamic terrorism from abroad.

“This defendant is a legal permanent resident of the United States who abandoned the country that took him in and instead pledged allegiance to ISIS and repeatedly and diligently promoted its violent objectives” US Attorney Billy Williams declared.

Were we really expecting anything else?

In the previous decade, Samir Khan, a Pakistani, had been churning out Jihadist propaganda for Al Qaeda’s Inspire magazine from Queens, New York, and then Charlotte, North Carolina. Inspire’s fare included, “Make a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom”, which may have been used by the Boston Marathon bombers.

One of his articles was titled, “I Am Proud to Be a Traitor to America.”

When he was taken out alongside Al Qaeda leader Anwar Al-Awlaki, the Obama administration offered a condolence call to the Khan family, and, along with Al-Awlaki, Khan became a cause celebre for lefties and libertarians, and his family who accused the United States of “assassinating” him. The Mothafar case shows how little we’ve learned since then.

They can’t take pride in being traitors to America if we don’t let them in.

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Wonder Woman 1984: ‘I didn’t pick up on the blatant Islamophobia during my initial viewing’

Trailer WW84:


Maybe Farid-ul-Haq initially missed the “Islamophobia” in “Wonder Woman 1984” because one has to strain so hard to see it at all. What exactly constitutes “Islamophobia” is never defined in this article; it is taken for granted that everyone knows what it is, and it appears that Farid-ul-Haq thinks of it as an irrational prejudice against Muslims. He bases his case that “Wonder Woman 1984” (which I haven’t seen and have no intention of seeing) is “Islamophobic” on its “featuring a Muslim character as one of the bad guys” while not having “a single Muslim character playing the role of a good guy.”

Farid-ul-Haq thus takes for granted that Hollywood must never portray Muslims as “bad guys,” despite the existence of Islamic jihad terrorists all over the world, or at least must not do so without a balancing Muslim “good guy.” Why must Hollywood act as a PR service for Islam? Farid-ul-Haq would likely say that it is because Muslims are particular targets of “hate and discrimination in the real world,” but this is actually not true. The FBI listed 995 anti-Jewish “offenses” in 2019, and 219 anti-Muslim “offenses.” Even one is too many, but 219 offenses against Muslims in a year in a country of 330 million actually shows that such offenses are quite rare, as they should be. Would Farid-ul-Haq agree that Hollywood should show four and a half times more Jewish “good guys” than Muslim “good guys,” so as to combat “hate and discrimination” against Jews? Must Hollywood always balance portrayals of “bad guys” who really exist in the world with “good guys” from the same group? Would Farid-ul-Haq want every movie that features a neo-Nazi to feature also a good German for balance?

Farid-ul-Haq is also enraged at “Wonder Woman 1984” because a character was depicted as “swatting away a pendant, inside a taxi, with the name Allah and Muhammad (P.B.U.H) written on it.” However, a commenter on his article states: “Thanks to this article, I’ve re-watched this scene over and over, and it looks to me that Steve is swatting the rear-view mirror to get it out of the way so he can climb out of the taxi after crashing it into the armored vehicle. Watching it frame-by-frame, it’s obvious he’s aiming for the mirror and not the pendant. The other issues brought up I can see, but I don’t see the pendant one.” Even if the character were swatting away the pendant, must Hollywood also abide by Sharia provisions mandating absolute reverence for Islamic religious objects? Has Hollywood ever shown similar deference toward Christianity, the cross, the Bible, the name of Jesus, etc.? Here again, why should Muslims and Islam be singled out for special consideration?

“Addressing the Islamophobia in ‘Wonder Woman 1984,’” by Farid-ul-Haq, The Geekiary, December 27, 2020:

Turns out, along with being problematic when it comes to consent, Wonder Woman 1984 also features Islamophobia. Sigh! At this point, if you’re out there supporting Wonder Woman 1984 while ignoring or excusing certain narrative issues, I don’t know what to say to you.

This piece contains minor spoilers for Wonder Woman 1984. Consider yourself warned. 

Full disclaimer, while I rolled my eyes at Wonder Woman 1984 featuring a Muslim character as one of the bad guys, I didn’t pick up on the blatant Islamophobia during my initial viewing. I got to know about the implications of the scene in question after I decided to head on over to the Muslim side of Twitter.

An action sequence during Wonder Woman 2 occurs in Cairo. Maxwell Lord goes to meet Emir Said Bin Abydos and take over his oil empire. The Muslim character’s wish is to construct a wall and regain control of his ancestral land.

During the final moments, the movie also had a character in mujahideen-looking garb wishing for nuclear weapons.

Yes, it felt weird this movie didn’t have a single Muslim character playing the role of a good guy, especially after the first Wonder Woman had a Muslim character be one of Diana’s friends. But it is what it is. I would like Hollywood to do better, of course.

Now, coming to the most problematic and Islamophobic scene that involved Steve Trevor (Chris Pine). I was surprised when I saw tweets about said scene and how blatantly Islamophobic it was to show Steve swatting away a pendant, inside a taxi, with the name Allah and Muhammad (P.B.U.H) written on it.

Turns out, my mind didn’t even register such a moment. Instead of realizing what had transpired onscreen, apparently, my brain did something and I thought Steve had quickly placed the pendant on the dashboard before crawling out of the taxi to help Diana.

I rewatched the scene and was quite disappointed to see the scene for it was. In my opinion, there was no reason for such a scene to exist. It served no narrative purpose other than Steve being shown throwing away the names of two beings held in high regard in the Muslim community.

Such artistic content uses fictional Muslim characters to challenge the “interpretations” of Islam that continue to be used to encourage hate and discrimination in the real world….

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

U..S. Sanctions Iran’s International Network of Islamic Seminaries, Accuses them of Jihad Recruitment

As the West continues to be duped by Muslim Brotherhood-linked lobbies, pushing the “Islamophobia” subterfuge which serves as a cover to advance the jihad, Iran continues to expand its operations worldwide via its proxies, and is eager for a Biden administration to further facilitate its ambitions.

Some background about Al-Mustafa International University:

In February 1979 Ayatollah Khomeini and a group of clergymen attached to him, seized the power in Iran. From the onset, Khomeini’s regime utilized all the means and tools in its disposal to establish and fortify its brand of fundamentalism in Iran and export it throughout the Islamic world….Al Mustafa international university founded in 2007 is one of the most important among these organizations.”

Aside from Islamic indoctrination at the university, thousands of “high value individuals” from Pakistan and Afghanistan were courted by the regime’s elite Quds Force to be recruited as jihadists, and “multiple students from the university have been killed fighting in Syria.” In a characteristic deception, the university earlier in December claimed that “it promoted “peace, friendship, and brotherhood among nations” and “slammed the U.S. decision as ‘hegemonic.’”

“U.S. Sanctions Put Spotlight On Iran’s International Network Of Religious Seminaries,” by Frud Bezhan, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty,December 22, 2020 (thanks to Henry):

Since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, Iran’s clerical establishment has used religious organizations to expand its clout abroad.

Key among them is the Al-Mustafa International University, a network of religious seminaries based in the Shi’ite holy city of Qom that has branches in some 50 countries.

The university claims to teach Shi’ite Muslim theology, Islamic science, and Iran’s national language, Persian, to tens of thousands of foreign students across Asia, Europe, Africa, and South America.

But Tehran’s adversaries say the university has been involved in espionage and recruited foreign fighters for Iran’s proxy war in Syria.

For years, experts have documented the powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps’ (IRGC) recruitment, training, and deployment of thousands of Shi’ite fighters to Syria to defend the country’s president, Bashar al-Assad, Tehran’s key ally in the brutal civil war that erupted in 2011.

‘Recruitment Platform’

The United States imposed sanctions on the massive university network on December 8, alleging that it was involved in the recruitment of Afghan and Pakistani students to fight in the Syrian conflict.

The U.S. Treasury Department said Iran’s elite Quds Force, the overseas operations arm of the IRGC, used the university’s foreign branches as a “recruitment platform” for “intelligence collection and operations,” including recruitment for pro-Iranian militias.

The Treasury Department alleged that the Quds Force used the Al-Mustafa International University as a “cover” to recruit Afghans for the blacklisted Fatemiyoun Brigade, a pro-Iranian militia that fought in Syria.

Moreover, Treasury said the Quds Force also used Al-Mustafa’s campus in Qom “as a recruitment ground” for Pakistani students to join the blacklisted Zeynabiyoun Brigade, a militia that consisted of Pakistani Shi’a.

Treasury added that “multiple students from the university have been killed fighting in Syria.”

In a statement on December 9, the university said it promoted “peace, friendship, and brotherhood among nations” and slammed the U.S. decision as “hegemonic.”

‘High-Value Individuals’

Ali Alfoneh, a senior fellow at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington who has closely monitored IRGC activity in Syria, said that, according to his database from January 2012 to December 2020, 3,059 Iranian and allied foreign fighters were killed in combat in Syria.

Alfoneh says of those, only three were students or graduates of the Al-Mustafa International University — known as Jamiat al-Mostafa University in Iran.

“This indicates that Jamiat al-Mostafa has never served as the primary recruitment ground for the IRGC’s war effort in Syria,” he says.

The IRGC recruited thousands of Afghan migrants and refugees within its own borders and covertly drafted hundreds of Shi’a inside Afghanistan. The same strategy was used to recruit Pakistanis.

Alfoneh says the “three individuals identified appear to have been in command, intelligence, or political-ideological indoctrination positions.”

That means, he said, that the IRGC perceived the graduates or students of the Al-Mustafa International University as “high-value individuals.”…

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

I Saw Mommy Beheading Santa Claus: Another Precarious Christmas in the Age of Jihad

Another Christmas is upon us, and it’s the same old story: in Muslim lands, Christians are oppressed and in constant danger of violent jihad attacks. And in the lands once known as Christendom, jihadis threaten new jihad massacres.

And so it was no surprise when International Christian Concern reported Wednesday that “security forces in Pakistan reportedly stopped a major terror attack planned to take place on Christmas Day in Peshawar. In a raid on a house in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Khyber district, four terrorists, including the leader of a banned militant outfit, were arrested.” Among those arrested was Zakir Afridi, the commander of the jihad terror group Lashkar-e-Islam.

“Along with the terrorists,” International Christian Concern reported, “security forces seized three suicide jackets and six improvised explosive devices.”

If this plot wasn’t inspired by a call from the Islamic State to murder Christians on Christmas Day, it certainly had the same goal in mind. The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) reported that “on December 12, 2020, online supporters of the Islamic State (ISIS) distributed an audio clip of a new nasheed (Islamic religious chant) titled ‘Coldly Kill Them With Hate And Rage.’” The jolly folks who “released the song on Telegram included a poster featuring a Christmas tree with a bomb attached to it, and the caption: ‘Just Terror 2020. Here are their holidays at your doorsteps, and we are here too! And we are about to enter them with you!’ The post also includes the hashtag #MerryChristmas, suggesting it be used on social media to disseminate the song.”

The charming ditty includes these lyrics: “They fought Islam day and night/Killed many Muslims all in one time/Vengeance fill the hearts and minds/Coldly kill them with hate and rage/Stab them, shoot them or a blast/Make their media cry and broadcast/The khilafah [caliphate].” Well, it ain’t exactly “The First Noel,” but at least they tried.

Meanwhile, OpIndia reported Monday that an old video from the renowned Islamic apologist Zakir Naik has gone viral this year. In it, Naik, who has been accused of ties to jihad terror activity, answers a young man’s question about whether or not it is permissible for Muslims to wish Christians a merry Christmas: “To reach your goals, you cannot use wrong means, brother. What is Haram [forbidden] to them is also Haram to you. When you are wishing Merry Christmas to them, you are agreeing that he is the son of God and that is Shirk [the grave sin of associating partners with Allah in worship]. Because they believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God. Irrespective of whether they are practising Christians or not, they celebrate the day because of His birthday…Is saying Merry Christmas wrong? I am telling you it is wrong. It is 100% wrong according to me….If you don’t know what Christmas stands for and happen to wish someone, Allah may forgive you. If you drink alcohol, mistaking it for Pepsi, Allah may forgive you. But if you are doing it to build a relationship after knowing what Christmas stands for, you are building your place in Jahannam (Hell). Therefore, for reaching good means, you never have to follow bad means. You have to follow the guidance of the Quran and the Sunnah (literature based on life and deeds of Prophet Muhammad).”

In a similar vein, the German-language site Philosophia Perennis site reported Saturday that another old video has gone viral there, featuring a Muslim preacher, Abu Maher, declaring: “Christmas is an insult to Allah!” The video was published by the Deutschsprachige Muslimische Gemeinschaft e.V. (“German-speaking Muslim Community, DMG) which describes itself as “an association in Braunschweig that has existed for many years” and states that “we represent Islam according to the understanding of the first three generations after the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) and want to convey Islam – based on the Qurân and Sunna (path of the Prophet) and its pure message – to our fellow human beings and society. It is important to us to enable all interested parties to get to know the values ​​and norms that Islam imposes on people.” The DMG adds: “As a Muslim community, we represent a part of the local society. We respect the laws of the Federal Republic of Germany, but at the same time insist on our basic rights, such as freedom of religion and freedom of expression, and want like every citizen and let every citizen live and live in peace and mutual tolerance.”

In light, however, of its denunciation of Christmas, its call for peace and tolerance appears to be in reality a call for peace and tolerance on the basis of the submission of non-Muslims to Muslims.

None of this is new, or surprising. It’s just another Christmas in the age of jihad.

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

U.S. Nuclear Submarine enters Persian Gulf after Pompeo blames Iran for Rocket Attack on U.S. Embassy in Baghdad

Tension is heating up in the Persian Gulf following a rocket attack on the American Embassy in Baghdad that left a civilian dead.

The nuclear sub sends a clear message to Iran, but clearly Iran has been emboldened by its expectation of a Biden administration that will enable billions to flow once again into its coffers, facilitate its nuclear arsenal build-up, expand its influence in the Middle East, and further enable it to terrorize its targets abroad, including Iranian dissidents who should be safe in the West.

“Israeli Submarine Reportedly Crossed Suez in ‘Message’ to Iran as US Warships Enter Persian Gulf,” by Svetlana Ekimenko, Sputnik News, December 22, 2020:

A US nuclear-powered submarine entered the Persian Gulf through the Strait of Hormuz on 21 December as part of Washington’s latest deterrence mission against Iran as tensions spiked after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blamed Iranian-backed militias for a rocket attack on the American Embassy compound in Baghdad on Sunday.

An Israeli Navy submarine visibly crossed the Suez Canal above water last week in what is being seen as a show of force aimed at Iran, Kan News, a public broadcaster, reported on Monday night.

Arab intelligence officials had reportedly confirmed to Kan News that the IDF Navy submarine surfaced and faced the Persian Gulf, which lies on the other side of Saudi Arabia, in a deliberate act, approved by Egypt, and purportedly intended to ‘send a message’ to Iran’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei.

There has not been any official comment from the Israel Defence Forces, with the IDF saying it does not respond to “reports of this kind.”

Earlier, on 21 December IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kohavi voiced a warning to Tehran against attacking Israel, vowing that the Jewish state would retaliate forcefully against any aggressive moves.

“Recently, we have heard increased threats from Iran against the State of Israel. If Iran and its partners, members of the radical axis [Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Palestinian terror groups], whether in the first circle of states or the second, carry out actions against Israel, they will discover their partnership to be very costly,” Kohavi was quoted by The Times of Israel as saying at a military ceremony. He added:

“The IDF will forcefully attack anyone who takes part, from near or far, in activities against the State of Israel or Israeli targets. I am saying this plainly and am describing the situation as it is — the response and all the plans have been prepared and practised.”
‘Message to Iran’

The reported move by the IDF Navy comes as a similar manoeuvre was undertaken on Monday by a US submarine. The US Navy confirmed that the guided-missile submarine USS Georgia entered the Persian Gulf through the Strait of Hormuz on 21 December, accompanied by two American warships, the guided-missile cruisers USS Port Royal (CG 73) and USS Philippine Sea (CG 58), amid heightened tensions with Iran.

​A US Navy official confirmed to Fox News that the latest movements in the Persian Gulf had been “long planned” ahead of the approaching anniversary of the killing of top Iranian General Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) Quds Force, in Iraq on 3 January 2020 by an American drone.

According to the American official, the manoeuvres were not in response to the rocket attack on the US Embassy compound in Baghdad on Sunday.

According to a statement from the US Navy, accompanied by photos of USS Georgia at the surface, the vessel can carry 154 Tomahawk cruise missiles and 66 special forces soldiers.

The Navy warned that the military move seeks to demonstrate “the United States’ commitment to regional partners and maritime security with a full spectrum of capabilities to remain ready to defend against any threat at any time.”

US military officials have been apprehensive of a possible attack by Iran to avenge the assassination of Soleimani in a US drone strike near Baghdad airport in Iraq in early January.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Chief Commander, Hossein Salami, said in September on the guard’s website that Tehran will avenge the US killing of its top commander General Qasem Soleimani by targeting those involved, in an “honourable” retaliation.

Spike in Iran Tensions
The show of force in the Persian Gulf comes amid heightened tensions with Iran after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo laid the blame with Iranian-backed militias for a rocket attack on the US Embassy compound in Baghdad on 20 December.

The attack left at least one local civilian dead, while no embassy personnel were killed or injured, according to NPR, which cited US diplomatic sources….

COLUMN BY

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

Al-Azhar says Sharia forbids joining Muslim Brotherhood, accuses it of ‘immorality, aggression and terrorism’

Entities all over the Muslim world has been cracking down on the Muslim Brotherhood, all while the Brotherhood and its affiliates expand their influence throughout the West. The highly publicized Holy Land foundation trial – the largest terrorism financing trial in the history of the United States — exposed an extensive list of Brotherhood operatives in America, as well as offshoots in Canada. Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE, Russia, Bahrain and Syria have all banned the Muslim Brotherhood and designated it a terrorist group. The U.S., Canada, and the EU need to do the same. Labeling groups which are connected to Hamas as “unindicted co-conspirators” isn’t enough. Take, for instance, the Canadian government of the former Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper. It declared IRFAN-Canada (Islamic Relief) a terrorist entity for funding Hamas. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) recently reintroduced the Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act, and explained that he believes it will “advance America’s fight against radical Islamic terrorism.” He’s right.

Last week, in a telling move, Sheikh Abdallah Bin Bayyah, the head of the UAE fatwa council, withdrew from the speaker list at the Reviving the Islamic Spirit mega-conference in Toronto because it featured MB-linked groups.

“Al-Azhar decrees prohibition of joining Muslim Brotherhood,” by Mohammed Abu Zaid, Arab News, December 21, 2020:

CAIRO: Al-Azhar Fatwa Global Center has said that joining the Muslim Brotherhood and other terrorist groups is forbidden according to Shariah and that God has forbidden division and disagreement.

The Egyptian newspaper Al-Watan quoted Al-Azhar as saying in its announcement that God forbids people from pursuing any path that distracts them from following the truth, explaining that keeping to the Qur’an and the Sunnah, in accordance with Shariah, was the only way to please God.

“It is clear to the public what these groups have done in distorting some texts, cutting them out of their context, and using them to achieve personal goals or interests and corrupting the land,” the center said in the fatwa.

“Membership in these extremist groups is considered forbidden by Shariah.”

“Joining the terrorist Brotherhood is forbidden by law [and is considered] cooperating in immorality and aggression, for that group violates the law of God and is involved in terrorism,” said Abdullah Al-Najjar, a member of the Islamic Research Academy.

Hussein Al-Qadi, a researcher in religious affairs and Islamic movements, said that the fatwa is the first of its kind in the history of Al-Azhar.

“This fatwa has never been issued from Al-Azhar before. Various statements were issued by Al-Azhar describing the Brotherhood as being outdated. In fact, Imam Muhammad Mustafa Al-Maraghi, reformer and rector of Al-Azhar, demanded the dissolution of the Brotherhood,” Al-Qadi said….

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

NYC: Muslim murders his daughter for being too ‘Americanized’ and not wanting to wear hijab

Witless Western feminists now have an annual event, World Hijab Day, in which they don hijabs in order to show solidarity with Muslim women in the West who supposedly experience abuse for wearing the hijab, although a great many of these incidents have been found to have been faked by the alleged victims. The real victims of abuse over wearing the hijab are much more often girls and women who don’t wear it, such as Ola Salem.

Aqsa Parvez’s Muslim father choked her to death with her hijab after she refused to wear it. Amina Muse Ali was a Christian woman in Somalia whom Muslims murdered because she wasn’t wearing a hijab. 40 women were murdered in Iraq in 2007 for not wearing the hijab. Alya Al-Safar’s Muslim cousin threatened to kill her and harm her family because she stopped wearing the hijab in Britain. Amira Osman Hamid faced whipping in Sudan for refusing to wear the hijab. An Egyptian girl, also named Amira, committed suicide after being brutalized by her family for refusing to wear the hijab. Muslim and non-Muslim teachers at the Islamic College of South Australia were told they had to wear the hijab or be fired. Women in Chechnya were police shot with paintballs because they weren’t wearing hijab. Other women in Chechnya were threatened by men with automatic rifles for not wearing hijab.

Elementary school teachers in Tunisia were threatened with death for not wearing hijab. Syrian schoolgirls were forbidden to go to school unless they wore hijab. Women in Gaza were forced by Hamas to wear hijab. Women in Iran protested against the regime by daring to take off their hijabs. Women in London were threatened with murder by Muslim thugs if they didn’t wear hijab. An anonymous young Muslim woman doffed her hijab outside her home and started living a double life in fear of her parents. Fifteen girls in Saudi Arabia were killed when the religious police wouldn’t let them leave their burning school building because they had taken off their hijabs in their all-female environment. A girl in Italy had her head shaved by her mother for not wearing hijab.

Other women and girls have been killed or threatened, or live in fear for daring not to wear the hijab. But where are the feminists standing in solidarity with them?

“Staten Island fugitive arraigned, held without bail in Staten Island slay of Muslim activist daughter,” by Rocco Parascandola, New York Daily News, December 22, 2020:

A former Olympic boxer charged with the strangulation of his daughter — an activist for the rights of Muslim women — was arraigned on murder charges Tuesday and ordered held without bail, the Staten Island district attorney said.

Kabary Salem, 52, was extradited from Kuwait on Friday, ending a year-long manhunt that started shortly after his daughter, Ola Salem, 25, was found strangled in Bloomingdale Park, a 138-acre park on the South Shore of Staten Island, the morning of Oct. 24, 2019.

Salem fled the country, possibly spending time in Egypt, authorities said — and even tried to throw investigators off his trail by telling The New York Times his daughter had complained to him that she was being tailed by another car on the highway.

“I want to know what happened to her, what is the reason for that, but no one tells me,” he told the news outlet. “I am just waiting.

“She was a really good, beautiful girl.”

Kabary Salem was indicted by a grand jury Nov. 3 and charged with murder, manslaughter, concealment of a human corpse and strangulation….

It’s unclear what sparked the violence. The DA’s office wouldn’t comment on a report that the father wasn’t happy with the man his daughter was dating.A source who knew the daughter told the Daily News she was becoming more Westernized and didn’t want to wear her hijab.

“She was very outspoken,” the source said. “She wasn’t timid.”

“She was becoming Americanized,” the source said….

The suspect was a top boxer in Egypt and competed in the 1992 and 1996 Olympics. His daughter also boxed and had dedicated her life to championing the rights of Muslim woman.

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

ADL smears foes of jihad violence against Israel as ‘Islamophobes,’ gets canceled as ‘anti-Muslim’ anyway

Jonathan Greenblatt is discovering that any dissent, no matter how small and qualified, from the far-Left agenda — which is increasingly open in its hostility to Israel — will get you defamed as an “Islamophobe,” no matter how much you pander, no matter how much you desperately try to stay in the good graces of those who set the tune to which the rest of us must dance. The sinister Salam al-Marayati of MPAC has smeared ADL as “anti-Muslim” for supporting Israel, and Greenblatt is dismayed, saying that “the allegation that ADL falls along the same side of Islamophobes is patently false.”

Of course it is. The ADL has repeatedly done to foes of jihad violence against Israel and other states, and foes of Sharia oppression of women and others, exactly what Salam al-Marayati is doing to him now. Greenblatt could have used this as an occasion to wake up and realize how he is being played, and how the entire “Islamophobia” enterprise is a scam designed to intimidate people into fearing to oppose jihad terror, for fear of falling prey to what al-Marayati is doing to him now. But instead of having an original thought for the first time in his life, Greenblatt is doubling down, pleading with al-Marayati to accept him. Will it work? Almost certainly not, but it will likely lead the ADL to become even more anti-Israel than it is now.

“ADL: We’re proud of our record defending Jews — and Muslims,” by Jonathan A. Greenblatt, Forward, December 16, 2020:

As one of the oldest civil-rights organizations in the Jewish community, we’re not unaccustomed to criticism, even in the pages of one of America’s oldest Jewish news outlets. But the OpEd by Salam Al-Marayati, president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, which the Forward published on Tuesday morning, was illuminating about how certain quarters in our society desperately try to employ cancel culture to silence others. In this case, the author is trying to marginalize ADL and make support for the State of Israel disqualifying in pursuing civil rights for all Americans, including the Muslim-American community.

Al-Marayati argues that ADL is a source of “anti-Muslim” rhetoric and cannot be fully trusted as an ally in the fight for civil rights because of our support of the Jewish state. It is an argument taken from the playbook of a fringe smear campaign being run against ADL that, to its credit, MPAC has not signed his name to, but which he still chose to directly quote in his piece. Still, their campaign is wrong and without merit on a number of levels. It is also dangerous, creating a space where we as a Jewish organization are judged more for what we do or do not say about Israel than for all of the advocacy work we do here in the U.S. and abroad fighting for marginalized communities.

This is a common tactic in a smear campaign – narrow down a broader argument (in this case, about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict) into a singular, unfounded allegation (in this case, that ADL is Islamophobic because of our support for the Jewish State). But the allegation that ADL falls along the same side of Islamophobes is patently false….

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

Tlaib: ‘I hope that you realize the opportunity that Allah has given us to show the power of Muslims in Georgia’

Expect many more such demonstrations of power in the coming years.

“Tlaib: ‘I Hope You Realize Just the Opportunity Here That Allah Has Given Us to Show the Power of Muslims in Georgia,’” by Patrick Goodenough, CNS News, December 14, 2020:

(CNSNews.com) – Muslim leaders, including Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), expressed the hope and expectation on Sunday that Muslim voters would be a deciding factor in the pivotal Senate runoff election in the state of Georgia early next month. The early voting period begins on Monday.

Participating in an online “vote-a-thon” co-hosted by the Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and Georgia Muslim Voter Project, Tlaib said: “I hope that you realize just the opportunity here that Allah has given us to show the power of Muslims in Georgia.”

“I want people to be like, oh my God, I didn’t even know Muslims are in Georgia,” she said. “Exactly! Because we’re going to show them in droves of numbers.”

“I want to, mash’allah [what Allah has willed] be able to say, ‘Look at the voting in these precincts and guess what? It was the Muslim vote that delivered Georgia,’ ” Tlaib said.
Mediavine

Omar said Muslim voters in Georgia had played a big part in delivering the result on November 3 that necessitated the runoff, and voiced the hope that the same would apply on January 5.

“I do hope that when the election is decided on January 5, and people are able to analyze who came out and voted, we will hear that the Muslims in Georgia were a big part of making the right decision in this historic election,” she said.

Omar and Tlaib in 2018 became the first two Muslim women to be elected to the U.S. Congress.

In next month’s runoff, Republican Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler are fighting off challenges from Democrats Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock respectively. The outcome will determine control of the Senate for the next two years at least.

Another participant in the livestreamed event on Sunday was Palestinian American activist and Women’s March co-founder Linda Sarsour.

“You, the Muslim community in Georgia, by yourselves, can literally swing this entire election and send two Democrats to the U.S. Senate, which makes Kamala Harris the deciding vote,” she said. “And you can actually alleviate harm and suffering on millions of immigrants in this country, particularly on the issue of immigration reform.”

“Let history be made, and let the story be told: On January 5, 2021, it is the Muslim American community, the votes from the Muslim American community in Georgia, that literally helped us win back that Senate and put us back on the path towards winning justice for our community,” Sarsour said….

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

New Study Reveals that Muslim Religiosity Strongly Linked to Hatred Towards the West

I am a Social and Political Psychologist that has been researching in the area of Psychology of Religion. What fascinates me about this discipline is that it goes beyond collecting people’s responses to understanding and examining their attitudes. Our aim is not limited to knowing what people think about a particular issue, but it expands to answer questions about why do they think and behave in a certain way and what we can do to change or sustain their behaviour.

The Christian faith dominates the field of Psychology of Religion. This is understandable since the West was the first to study religion using empirical scientific methods. As a Middle Eastern, I was keen to enrich the literature by expanding it to cover Islam and Muslims. In a recent study that I published in one of the top journals of the scientific study of religion, I examined the relationship between Muslim religiosity and prejudice towards the West. I wanted to investigate whether there was an association between being a religious Muslim and having negative attitudes toward the West. The sample of this study was collected from 17 Arab countries and from a variety of ages ranging from 18 to over 70.

The results were distressing and revealed that Muslim religiosity was strongly linked to hatred towards the West. It was expected to see a link between Islamic fundamentalism and negative attitudes towards the West; however, even intrinsic Muslim religiosity (moderate Islam) strongly predicted prejudice towards the West. In fact, the only groups that had favourable attitudes toward the West were the secular and nonreligious Arabs. What makes this finding intriguing is that it is different than what is found in a Western context. For instance, Christian fundamentalism is still linked to prejudice toward Muslims, but moderate Christian religiosity is not. Also, when we add ideological variables like Right-Wing Authoritarianism and Dogmatism to mediate this relationship, the Christian fundamentalism – prejudice link disappears. This means that in a Western context, Right-Wing Authoritarianism and Dogmatism have a substantial impact on prejudiced attitudes that the religiosity factor becomes insignificant. In comparison, Muslim religiosity remains even after including ideological factors like Right-Wing Authoritarianism and Dogmatism to try to mediate the link between Islam and negative biases towards the West. In other words, Muslim religiosity remains the dominant predictor for disliking the West regardless of it being moderate or reaching a fundamentalism level.

The crucial thing about these findings is that it shows that Islam is not like other religions and that this ideology needs to be understood and examined from a different scope. I have prepared a project entitled: “Conceptualizing and measuring Islamic fundamentalism in the Middle East, and consequences for anti-Western prejudice.” This project will examine Islamic fundamentalism in more detail in the Middle East and test its relationship to anti-Western prejudice, its link to political Islam, and other related psychological traits. Long story short, I was quite surprised by the response of many Western universities that were hesitant to invest in this research. I was asking myself why is it ok to study and examine other religions but one of a sudden it might not be a good idea to study Islam? After all, this is science, and science should remain objective.

As a psychologist, I believe that if we are serious about finding a cure for a patient, then we must begin by a proper diagnosis. But if we insist that the patient is ok and does not need treatment than things will only get worse. That is why science is crucial to help us understand and work on finding solutions to deal with extreme ideologies rather than leaving things the way they are which will only bring more violence and risk stability and security in both the East and the West. And if the recent horrifying act of beheading a schoolteacher in France because of showing some pictures was not enough to bring a wake-up call then I’m not anticipating a bright future! If you would like to read the details of my study you can reach it through this link: Islam and the West

COLUMN BY

Bashar Albaghli is a Kuwaiti academic that specialises in the scientific study of religion. He was sponsored by Kuwait University and was supposed to go back to Kuwait and be a lecturer after he completed his PhD studies. However, he was prosecuted and sentenced to prison because of his political opinions against the Islamists and funding terrorism in the Gulf.

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

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

Chutzpah: Palestinians Prepare List of Demands For Biden Administration

The Palestinian Arabs sense an opening for them in Biden’s Washington, where they rightly assume they will be personae gratae again. They have already been preparing their laundry list of demands for the Biden Administration, which is discussed here: “PA wants Biden to reverse ‘anti-Palestinian’ decisions,” by Khaled Abu Toameh, Jerusalem Post, November 22, 2020:

The Palestinians will demand that the new administration under US President-elect Joe Biden cancel “anti-Palestinian” decisions taken by the administration of President Donald Trump, Palestinian officials said on Sunday.

The officials told The Jerusalem Post that the Palestinian Authority has prepared a list of demands that will be presented to Biden after he is sworn in on January 20.

The list includes a request to reopen the PLO diplomatic mission in Washington, rescinding Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, resuming financial aid to the PA and the UN Relief and Work Agency and reopening the US consulate in east Jerusalem.

In addition, the officials said, the Palestinians will also demand the Biden administration cancel the recent decision that allows US citizens born in Jerusalem to list Israel as their place of birth, as well as US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s announcement allowing for settlement products to be labeled as “Made in Israel.”

“We have already contacted Biden’s people to inform them of our demands,” a Palestinian official told the Post. “We had a positive dialogue with senior officials who are close to Biden.”

Since that contact between the Palestinians with Biden’s staff, the two most pro-Israel of Biden’s advisers, Tony Blinken and Jake Sullivan, have been appointed to be, respectively, Secretary of State and National Security Adviser. It may not be quite as smooth sailing for the PA as it thought just a few days ago.

Last week, PA Foreign Minister Riad Malki said the Palestinians want to conduct dialogue with the new US administration in order to cancel decisions taken by the Trump administration.

Malki said the Palestinians have suffered tremendously as a result of Trump’s decisions directed against them, including the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, the transfer of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, the closure of the PLO mission in the US and the suspension of US financial aid to the Palestinians.

Malki and other Palestinian officials said they also expected the Biden administration to distance itself from Trump’s plan for Middle East peace, also known as the “Deal of the Century.” The Palestinian leadership has strongly condemned the plan, unveiled in January 2020, as a “conspiracy aiming to liquidate the Palestinian issue and national rights.”

Another Palestinian official told the Post that while he was optimistic the Biden administration would cancel some of the decisions taken by the Trump administration, the Palestinians do not believe it would be easy to return the US Embassy to Tel Aviv.

No, it won’t be easy to move the Embassy back to Tel Aviv. It will be impossible. There is not a chance in hell that the American Embassy will be moved out of Jerusalem. Biden has already declared that he would not do it, though he also added that he “would not have made the move himself,” a curious remark given that he was one of the most enthusiastic backers of the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act, which passed in the Senate by 93 to 5.

“We know that the Biden administration would not be able to accept all our demands, such as the removal of the embassy from Jerusalem, but we are very optimistic regarding the other demands,” the official explained. “If [Biden] renounces the ‘Deal of the Century’ and resumes financial aid to the Palestinians, this will be a good step in the right direction. It will be a big victory for the Palestinian people.”

The suspension of financial aid to the Palestinians was partly in response to the PA’s refusal to end its Pay-For-Slay program, which incentivizes terrorism by providing generous monthly stipends to imprisoned terrorists, and to the families of terrorists who had been killed. The PA has been recently been making noises about modifying the plan, by providing stipends based not, as now, on the length of a sentence, which provide more money the longer the sentence (so those who commit the worst attacks get more money), but instead on the “financial need” of a terrorist’s family. Qadri Abu Bakr, the PLO’s Director for Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, in English told the New York Times that the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) policy on terrorists’ families’ salaries will change. But in the Arabic version of those remarks, Qadri Abu Bakr said the exact opposite, assuring his listeners that the calculation of stipends to terrorists and their families would not change in any way. Two versions, directly contradicting each other. Why not? Qadri Abu Bakr knows: “War is deceit,” said Muhammad.

It is thus doubtful that the PA could bring itself to change its Pay-For-Slay policy, which reflects the Palestinians’ visceral support for terrorism. But even if the PA did change the criteria according to which the stipends are calculated, this would still leave in place a program that subsidizes, and therefore incentivizes, terrorism. This will make it very difficult for the Americans to turn on the faucet of aid again.

The PA’s complacent assumption that the Americans will renew financial aid to the Palestinians needs to be challenged and undermined. Even without the Pay-For-Slay program, why should the Americans turn on that tap for the PA, rather than have the PA go hat in hand to their fellow Arabs in the oil states, or Iran, or Turkey, and ask them for aid? Who decided that the United States owes the Palestinians a permanent living? And why should American taxpayers be shelling out billions, over the years, to UNRWA, which includes on its ever-expanding rolls of those who receive its largesse not just the real Palestinian refugees, those who left in 1947-1949, of whom there may now be 30,000 still alive – but also all of their descendants, now amounting to more than five million people? Who decided that among the many tens of millions of refugees who have been created by conflicts – wars, civil wars, persecutions — all over the world since the late 1940s, only one group, the Palestinians, should be allowed to pass on the refugee status to their children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and so on, world without end?

This ever-lengthening list of “Palestinian refugees” has been on the international – almost entirely Western – dole for decades. Don’t we need to ask a few questions at this point? For example, why are we Americans expected to give hundreds of millions of dollars a year to the Palestinians instead of, say, to the inoffensive and much poorer people in Bolivia or the Congo or Nepal? What exactly have the Palestinians done for us? Haven’t they used terror as a weapon for a half-century? Didn’t we see the Palestinians hand out candies and celebrate when they heard the glad news on 9/11/2001? Haven’t Palestinian terrorists killed American citizens? Isn’t Hamas a local branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, that seeks a worldwide caliphate? And what about the links between the Palestinians and our mortal enemy, Iran?

According to the official, the Palestinians are also expecting the Biden administration to return to the long-standing US policy toward settlements and adhere to UN resolutions on this issue.

In November 2019, Pompeo announced that the US no longer views settlements as “inconsistent with international law,” a move that drew strong condemnation from the Palestinian leadership.

Secretary Pompeo had quite properly declared as a break with previous policy what ought to have been American policy all along. The Israeli settlements in the West Bank do not violate, and are not “inconsistent with” international law. Their legality stems from the Mandate for Palestine, that included the entire West Bank in the territories assigned to the future Jewish National Home. Previous administrations had relied on the “Hansell Memorandum” of 1978, which took the position that the settlements were “illegal,” but Hansell himself never mentions the Palestine Mandate In his memorandum, as if it were of little moment, when it is, in fact, the essential document for understanding Israel’s claim to the West Bank, and hence, the basis of Israel’s right to build settlements in that territory.

COLUMN BY

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

Biden names ‘Palestinian’ who justified jihad suicide bombings as deputy director of Office of Legislative Affairs

Not a good sign for future U.S. relations with Israel. But this is also a sign of how topsy-turvy the world is today. Biden wouldn’t be caught dead naming someone who had noted that Islam is not a religion of peace to any position at all in his administration. Such a person would be poison to the Democrats and to most Republicans. But demonize Israel and justify murder of civilians? Welcome aboard!

“Reema Dodin to be first Palestinian-American White House staffer,” by Tzvi Joffre, Jerusalem Post, November 24, 2020:

Reema Dodin, a Palestinian-American, will serve alongside Shuwanza Goff as a deputy director of the White House Office of Legislative Affairs, President-elect Joe Biden announced on Monday. Dodin will be the first Palestinian-American to serve as a White House staffer, according to Palestinian media.

The new White House staffer was born to Jordanian-Palestinian immigrants in the US. Dodin’s family is originally from Dura, near Hebron, according to Palestinian media.

Dodin served as deputy chief of staff to Democratic Senator Richard Durbin and has also served on the Judiciary Subcommittee on Human Rights and the Law, among other positions.

She is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is also a Truman National Security Fellow, a New Leaders Council Fellow, an Aspen Socrates alum, a former term member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a member of the Jenkins Hill Society – a consortium of women in politics supporting female politicians.

During the Second Intifada, in 2002, Dodin spoke about the Palestinian-Israeli conflict with residents of Lodi, California, saying that “suicide bombers were the last resort of a desperate people,” according to the Lodi News-Sentinel.

In 2001, Dodin took part in a demonstration at UC Berkeley calling for the university to divest from Israel, according to the Berkeley Daily Planet, a local news publication. The demonstrators compared Israel to apartheid South Africa….

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

California: Muslim stabbed four ‘in the name of Allah,’ planned to read Qur’an until cops arrived, then shoot them

The Qur’an? Didn’t Faisal Mohammad know that, as Pope Francis has told us, “authentic Islam and the proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence”?

Despite the fact that Mohammad “was found to have an image of the ISIS flag, a handwritten manifesto with instructions on how to behead someone, and reminders to pray to Allah,” everyone who participated was sure that his stabbings had something to do with “images of masculinity” and nothing to do with Islam, and that only “Islamophobes” thought otherwise. This is no surprise. The University of California Merced is no different from any other campus all over the country: full of indoctrinated bots who have been thoroughly imbued with the notion that when Islamic jihadists attack us, it is our fault.

“FBI releases 2015 attack plan of radicalized California university student who stabbed 4 on campus,” Associated Press, November 18, 2020 (thanks to The Religion of Peace):

MERCED, Calif. – A troubled California university freshman who burst into a classroom in 2015, stabbing four people before police shot him dead, planned to praise Allah while slitting the throats of classmates and use a gun taken from an ambushed officer to kill more, according to records released by the FBI.

Authorities determined that Faisal Mohammad, an 18-year-old freshman at the University of California, Merced had no connections to organized hate or terror groups and no past behavior to suggest violence.

Still, records released by the Federal Bureau of Investigation to the Daily Beast publication include a chilling, handwritten 31-step plan for the Nov. 4 attack with names of people to target.

The plan included putting on a balaclava at 7:45 a.m. and saying “in the name of Allah” before stepping into his classroom and ordering students to use zip-ties he provided to bind their hands.

Mohammad also planned to make a fake 911 distress call to report a suicidal guy [sic; this is how they write at AP these days] and wait for police outside the classroom before ambushing from behind “and slit calmly yet forcefully one of the officers with guns.”

He planned to take a gun from an officer and kill classmates before making another fake distress call to 911 to report the shootings. Step 26 was to read the Quran until he heard sirens, and then “take calm shot after shot” with the gun as authorities arrive….

…investigators said the perpetrators were influenced by the Islamic State group, but not directly connected to it. Families in both cases said they had no clue of their relatives’ radicalization.

Of course not!

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

Trump is Right: Our Exit from Afghanistan is Long Overdue

President Trump is withdrawing a significant number of troops from Afghanistan, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is livid. According to AP, McConnell “warned against a potentially ‘humiliating’ pullout from Afghanistan that he said would be worse than President Barack Obama’s 2011 withdrawal from Iraq and reminiscent of the U.S. departure from Saigon in 1975.” Not to be outdone, Rep. Michael McCaul, Republican leader on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, insisted: “We need to ensure a residual force is maintained for the foreseeable future to protect U.S. national and homeland security interests and to help secure peace for Afghanistan.” But McConnell and McCaul are advocating for a failed policy. It is long past time to leave Afghanistan.

In his State of the Union address on February 5, 2019, President Trump stated: “As a candidate for President, I pledged a new approach. Great nations do not fight endless wars.” Epitomizing the need to do this was what happened when Trump first moved to end America’s longest endless war, the war in Afghanistan, with a treaty with the group that the U.S. entered Afghanistan in order to topple, the Taliban, in February 2020. The ink was still fresh on the signed document when the Taliban launched a new attack against Afghan government forces, killing twenty Afghan soldiers and police officers.

The attack was a fitting symbol of the fruitlessness of these endless wars and the bankruptcy of the assumptions and policies that had led to their being waged.

After all these years, we have little to show for all our efforts in the nation that has been ominously dubbed the “graveyard of empires.” The U.S. has sacrificed the lives of numerous heroic service members and squandered trillions for nearly two decades in the fond hope that it could remake Afghanistan into a stable, Western-style republic that would respect the human rights of all its citizens. That’s still the plan, as far as the architects of our intervention are concerned: One foreign policy establishment wonk counseled patience, saying that Afghanistan “is not going to become Switzerland overnight,” a fact that is as obvious as Joe Biden’s dementia.

Great. So we know now after almost twenty years that it isn’t going to happen overnight, but how long exactly is it going to take? To that question the advocates of endless intervention have no definite answer. Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld said in late 2019: “We are never going to get the U.S. military out of Afghanistan unless we take care to see that there is something going on that will provide the stability that will be necessary for us to leave.”

All right, but what’s it going to take? Do Rumsfeld, McConnell, and McCaul really think that after nearly twenty years, one more year, or five more years, or ten more years, will do the job?

Afghanistan will never be a Western-style republic and will likely never be free of the Taliban without a massive transformation of Afghan society, no matter how long we stay, and such a transformation is not on the horizon. This was clear relatively early in the conflict, but the obviousness of this fact did not make successive Republican and Democratic administrations rethink the wisdom of being there.

And so after all this American expenditure of personnel, money, and materiel, there is absolutely no doubt that once we leave, the Taliban will make gains and may even regain control of the Afghan government.

Did that mean that America had to keep troops there for fifty years? A hundred years? Should we just make Afghanistan the fifty-first state and seal our commitment there forever? Or should the U.S. instead focus on what is best for America in Afghanistan, working to contain the jihad there and to ensure that the Taliban does not and cannot engage in international jihad terror activity, while otherwise leaving the Afghans to their own devices?

America’s tragic misadventure in Afghanistan makes it clear that a new foreign policy strategy is urgently needed, and that the ideas and assumptions that have governed U.S. foreign policy for nearly a century needed to be consigned to the dustbin of history. President Trump had proposed to do that. Now we are likely to see instead a retrenchment of the forces that made the tragedy of two decades of war in Afghanistan happen in the first place. President Biden, or President Harris, or President Pelosi, or whatever horror show we may be facing next, could send the troops that Trump withdraws right back into the belly of the beast.

After all, as Trump said last September, “the top people in the Pentagon…want to do nothing but fight wars so that all of those wonderful companies that make the bombs and make the planes and make everything else stay happy. But we’re getting out of the endless wars, you know how we’re doing.” He is getting us out. Others, wanting to keep the Masters of War happy, may get us right back in.

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