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VIDEO: Understanding Civilizational Jihad In America

Understanding civilizational jihad is essential to America’s national security.

An expert on civilizational jihad is Mr. Frank Gaffney. Mr. Gaffney is a subject matter expert on the Global Jihad Movement. Mr. Gaffney was nominated by President Reagan to become the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy, the senior position in the Defense Department with responsibility for policies involving nuclear forces, arms control and U.S.-European defense relations. He acted in that capacity for seven months during which time, he was the Chairman of the prestigious High Level Group, NATO’s senior politico-military committee. He also represented the Secretary of Defense in key U.S.-Soviet negotiations and ministerial meetings.

In this short 4 minute clip you will learn the basic elements of Jihad to better help you understand the world around you both friend and foe. Know Thyself and Know Thy Enemy.

Rabbi Jonathan Hausman invited Frank Gaffney, Admiral ‘Ace’ Lyons, and Clare Lopez to educate his congregation and the greater public through his “Speaker Series”

Take the information in this clip and learn about the threats to America and to your community.

EDITORS NOTE: To learn more about the Center for Security Policy visit: http://www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org/. To learn more about the Rabbi Hausman speaker series here: http://www.atorah.org/

Lars Vilks Free Speech Event Turns Deadly in Copenhagen

Vilks Self Portrait

Lars Vilks self-Portrait.

Today’s deadly assault by a masked gunman who sprayed more than 200 rounds of automatic fire into a Café in Northern Copenhagen. The exchange of gunfire by  the gunmen with Danish security police  took the life of one 40-year old man at the Free Speech, Blasphemy and Islam  event  where both Swedish Artist Lars Vilks the honoree and the French Ambassador were present. They were unhurt in the attack. Three security police were injured in the shootout at the Krudttønden Café.

Listen to this BBC recording of a speaker at the Krudttønden Café when gunfire sent everyone to the floor. According to a later reports from AFP, Reuters and BBC:

A  second, perhaps related, incident, close to Copenhagen’s main synagogue in the city center, saw a 55-year old  Jewish man shot in the head, who subsequently died of  wounds,  and two policemen were  injured, police said in a statement early Sunday.  The BBC reported  “early on Sunday, police said they had shot dead a man  who opened fire on them near a railway station in the neighborhood of Noerrebro where they had been keeping an address under observation.”

Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt described the assault as “a terrorist attack”, while the United States branded it “deplorable”.

French ambassador to Denmark Francois Zimeray, who had been present at the debate but was not hurt, told AFP the shooting was an attempt to replicate the January 7 attack on the Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris which killed 12 people.

“They shot from the outside (and) had the same intention as Charlie Hebdo, only they didn’t manage to get in,” he said by telephone from the venue.

We interviewed  Vilks when he appeared at Rabbi Jonathan Hausman’s Massachusetts synagogue in 2010 during a tour of the US under the auspices of the International Free Press society.  He discussed several attacks on him, including   a firebombing attack by jihadis at his home in Sweden. This followed the publication in 2007 of his Mohammed as a roundabout dog sketches and assault against him at an Uppsala University lecture.   We noted his raison d’être for the Mohammed cartoon:

Vilks created the Mohammed sketch for an exhibition in Sweden entitled “Dog in the Roundabout.” He explained that Sweden’s road/highway system is dotted with roundabouts (rotaries). Often, parks are created in such rotaries or there is simply open area in which people take their dogs for walks. In 2006, there was a national competition to create dogs in roundabouts. With his artist’s eye, Vilks drew dogs in the roundabout. He then began to play with different forms of dogs…solid form, blurry form, different sizes, dogs in different settings, interchanging the body of a dog with the head of a man, Mohammed. Vilks has stated that this series of drawings stirred the ire of the Muslim world. The catalyst for his sketches was the growing violence and changes in Swedish cities caused by Muslim immigrants who displayed unbridled anti-Semitism and anti-Western animus.

Vilks_cartoon

Vilks cartoon Mohammed as roundabout dog.

See a separate interview with Vilks in our collection, The West Speaks. Today’s fatal attack at the Krudttønden Café unfortunately reminds us that blasphemy under Sharia can result in death.

Update from Nidra Poller in Paris:

Now the Danish police are saying there was just one gunman. They have published CCTV photos of him. They describe him as “North African origin.” The event was a tribute to Charlie Hebdo. Debate  is  lively in France and we’re not hearing the “nothing to do with Islam” melody. Europeans are aware that all our liberties are under attack. It’s not just a question of blasphemy. That’s just the beginning. 

The Local in Denmark has updates:

Update, 6.18pm: 

The civilian killed in Saturday’s shooting attack was a 40-year-old Danish citizen, police have said. Police added that they have founded the suspected getaway vehicle but two suspects are still at large.

Update, 6.08 p.m.: Reports of up to 200 shots fired:

The French Ambassdor to Denmark told AFP from inside the venue that shots rang out in the midst of a debate on Islam and free speech in Copenhagen.

“They fired on us from the outside. It was the same intention as [the January 7 attack on] Charlie Hebdo except they didn’t manage to get in,” Francois Zimeray said by telephone.

Swedish artist Lars Vilks, the author of controversial Prophet Mohammed cartoons published in 2007 that sparked worldwide protests was also at the debate.

Three police officers were reported wounded outside the building, Danish media reported, quoting eyewitnesses.

Zimeray said earlier on Twitter that he was not harmed.

“Intuitively I would say there were at least 50 gunshots, and the police here are saying 200,” he told AFP.

“Bullets went through the doors and everyone threw themselves to the floor. We managed to flee the room, and now we’re staying inside because it’s still dangerous. The attackers haven’t been caught and they could very well still be in the neighborhood.”

A Femen activist, Inna Shevshenko, said on Twitter that there were several dozen people in the room.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius condemned the attack, saying in a statement that France “remains by the side of the Danish authorities and people in the fight against terrorism.”

Vilks has been under police protection since his 2007 cartoons were published.

The French president’s office said Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve was headed to the scene.

Update, 5.57 p.m.:

Police have confirmed that one civilian has died and three police officers are wounded. Police continue to hunting for two suspected gunmen in a dark Volkswagen Polo. The suspects were said to be wearing all black and speaking Danish.

Vilks himself was unhurt in the attack.

Police say they believe Vilks, known for his depictions of the Prophet Muhammad, was the target of the attack. He was attending a debate on the theme of ‘Art, blasphemy and freedom of speech’ at the Krudttønden cultural centre in the Østerbro area of the Danish capital. The attack took place after a speech by the French Ambassador to Denmark.

Delegate Dennis Meyhoff Brink, a satire researcher, told Jyllands Posten that he heard 30 shots over a two minute period. Danish security police then ordered everyone to remain inside. According to reports, the focus of the attack was on the entrance to the building, and the gunman did not enter the main hall.

“[Security police] came running through the room brandishing guns, and they took Lars Vilks out a back door.”

According to Brink, the shots were fired just as the French Ambassador, François Zimeray, had finished speaking. Zimeray immediately took to Twitter to confirm that he was still alive:

Copenhagen police confirmed to the Berlingske newspaper that three officers were wounded in the shooting and that two suspected gunmen were at large. The suspects wore black and spoke Danish.

The meeting was held under tight security, with delegates subject to searches as they entered the building.

The newspaper Ekstra Bladet writes that the police are treating the attack as an act of terrorism.

Helle Merete Blix, one of the organizers of the meeting, told Danish channel TV2 News that the meeting continued following the drama:

“We couldn’t get away, so the debate meeting carried on,” she said.

More soon

RELATED ARTICLES:

Muslims Criticize Obama’s Anti-Extremism Efforts As Wrongly Singling Out Muslims

David Cameron on Denmark attack: “Free speech must always be protected”

Islamic State chops off women’s hands for using cell phones

Islamic State beheading people for smoking cigarettes

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review. The featured image is of Danish Police Searching for Gunman after Attack on Free Speech event at Krudttønden Café 2-14-15. Source Martin Vesty/Scanpix.

Media Manipulation of the Jerusalem Synagogue Murders

In the wake of the horrific news of the slaughter at the Kehillat Yaakov synagogue in Jerusalem, we convened an on-air discussion on 1330WEBY in Pensacola. During the broadcast word came of the fifth death, an Israeli Druze Border Policeman. A sixth victim of their barbarous attack is reported to have fallen into a coma. This was as a result of the Islamikaze attack by two cousins from the Jabel Mukaber section of east Jerusalem, Odei Abed Abu Jamal, 22 and Ghassam Mohammed Abu Jamal, 32, equipped with guns, knives, and meat cleavers. They were members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine allegedly motivated by Jewish threats to the Haram al Sharaf/ Temple Mount. They were shot dead by the two Israeli police at the blood spattered horrific scene inside the synagogue in Har Nof that took the lives of four rabbis, three dual citizen Americans and a Briton. In the aftermath of this heinous attack, sweets and cookies were distributed in Gaza City while Palestinians there celebrated the grisly murders of the rabbis at Kehillat Yaakov synagogue in Jerusalem.

The ‘we” included  WEBY Your Turn host and general manager Mike Bates, this writer  and Rabbi Eric Tokajer of Brit Ahm Synagogue in Pensacola, host of WEBY program, “In the  Beginning.” This summer we did several programs to update the Gulf Coast listener audience of the threats to Israel during the 50 day IDF Operation Defensive Edge.  The rocket and terror tunnel war was launched by Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad in the wake of the murders of three Jewish Yeshiva students by Hamas operatives masquerading as observant Jews.  They were killed while hitchhiking home near Hebron. That series of radio discussions culminated in the launch of a local Federation sponsored Stand for Israel rally in historic Seville square with hundreds of attendees.

Prior to the segment, Bates and I looked at two disquieting videos of President Obama’s remarks regarding the slaughter at Kehillat Yaakov synagogue.  One was produced by CNBC, while the other was the raw AP news video. Conspicuous by its absence in the former was President Obama’s morally equivalent lines in his statement, “Too many Israelis and too many Palestinians have died”.  Breitbart drew attention to Obama’s remarks in the raw AP video, Obama Responds to Jerusalem Synagogue Attack: ‘Too Many Palestinians Have Died’. However, as Rabbi  Tokajer observed during the opening moments of our discussion, CNN had an earlier breaking headline of the grisly synagogue attack, “Two Palestinians shot Dead by Israeli Police “. This while sweets and cookies were being handed out and Palestinians celebrated in Gaza.  I drew attention to the deep links between the Obama White House and major media illustrated by Deputy National Security Advisor and spokesperson, Ben Rhodes, whose brother David heads CBS News. As one aspect of that, I referred to the  editing of reportage by former CBS correspondent Sheryl Atkisson over the Benghazi episode that she chronicled in her  new book, Stonewalled: My Fight for Truth Against the Forces of Obstruction, Intimidation, and Harassment in Obama’s Washington.

Early on in the radio discussion, I drew attention to one of the victims of the synagogue slaughter, Rabbi Moshe Twersky, son of revered Chassidic Rabbi Isadore.  As a native of the Boston area I spoke of the esteem the Twersky rabbinic dynasty was held in, reflected in the naming of the new Harvard Judaic Studies Center after Rabbi Isadore, its founding director. Rabbi Jonathan Hausman of Ahavath Torah Congregation in Stoughton, Massachusetts commented in a Skype IM exchange, that “Moshe’s father was the Talner Rebbe. A giant.”  The Twerskys were an important Rabbinic dynasty that The Forward pointed out in an article melded both Chassidic and Modern Orthodox Judaism.  Rabbi Moshe Twersky’s grandfather on his mother’s side was Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik, a renowned Jewish scholar who founded the Maimonides School from which Rabbi Twersky graduated.

During the segment we discussed the incitement and duplicity in the condemnation by PA President Abbas that was quickly seized upon by the President Obama and the mainstream media.  Abbas, as Bates pointed out was serving in the tenth year of an initial four year term as PA President, had stoked the violence in Jerusalem in the wake of an American born Palestinian youth murdered by three Israeli youths. Bates said that the Jewish perpetrators had been arraigned and doubtless will be prosecuted for their crime.

 Rabbi Tokajer commented that perhaps behind this current wave of violence lay a reality when he pointed out that “according to a recent survey by Near Eastern Consulting 75% of Palestinians do not accept Israel’s right to exist and reject a two state solution.” He noted that Administration had repeatedly accused PM Netanyahu of stoking the Palestinian violence through announcements of new housing construction in Jerusalem. To which Bates replied this criticism was unwarranted as there was a project that set aside nearly half the units for Arabs.

That was exemplified by the contretemps during the October 2014 Netanyahu visit with Obama in the Oval Office. over the announcement of 2,610 units in Givat HaMatos.  White House press spokesman Josh Earnest expressed deep concern with construction of “settlements” in “sensitive” areas of east Jerusalem. Further Earnest said , “This development will only draw condemnation from the international community, (and) distance Israel from even its closest allies”, a clear reference to the Administration. Israel PM Netanyahu at a New York press conference later the same day disputed the comment saying, “Arabs in Jerusalem purchase homes freely in the west of the city and nobody says that’s forbidden. I don’t intend to tell Jews that they can’t buy homes in East Jerusalem.” It was left to Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat angered by the White House attack who issued this statement:

I say this firmly and clearly: building in Jerusalem is not poisonous and harmful – rather, it is essential, important and will continue with full force. I will not freeze construction for anyone in Israel’s capital. Discrimination based on religion, race or gender is illegal in the United States and in any other civilized country.

Our discussion then focused on Abbas and Jordan’s upset at Jewish claims that they are entitled to pray on the temple mount, which is also shared by Muslims as the fourth most revered Mosque in Islam. Turning to the religious conflict over the Temple Mount, Bates, who had his first visit to Israel in March 2014, referred to the sign that Jews were not permitted to pray on the Temple Mount, the Noble Sanctuary/Haram Al Sharaf as Muslims refer to it. He mused that the spot is revered by Jews as well as Christians as the Dome of the Rock is the mythic location of Abraham’s attempted sacrifice of Isaac, the Akeda in Hebrew, but had been aborted by Angels carrying instructions from Ha Shem.

We pointed out the contemporary conflict over Jewish rights to pray on the Temple Mount in the shooting of another American –born Israeli   victim of Palestinian violence, Rabbi Yehuda Glick, head of the Temple Mount Faithful that seeks civil rights for Jews to pray there. Glick was assaulted at the Menachem Begin Heritage Center in late October 2014 and shot three times by a Palestinian Islamic Jihad operative, Mutaz Hijazi, who after fleeing the scene on a motorcycle was tracked down and killed by Israeli Border police.

The continuing denial of Jewish and Christian rights to pray on the Temple Mount under Israeli law can be traced to the key role that the legendary Moshe Dayan played in urging the Knesset to pass legislation ceding control over the Temple Mount to the Waqf or trust appointed by the King of Jordan, hence the role played by King Abdullah in the current contretemps. Meanwhile the Muslim appointees have done everything possible to destroy the heritage of Jewish presence by excavating under the Haram al Sharaf/Temple Mount.

Rabbi Tokajer brought up the issue that the myopic delusion of a peace settlement between Israel and the PA based on the 1949 Armistice Line.  He said that there is no reason for a division of unified Jerusalem given that a Palestinian State already exists, Jordan.

We brought up the matter of the UAE’s designation of a host of terrorist groups that included, Al Qaeda, ISIS, the Muslim Brotherhood and two of its US affiliates, the Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Muslim American Society (MAS). The question was brought up about both the UAE and Saudi Arabia having major financiers underwriting these terrorist groups.  Rabbi Tokajer pointed out that Arab society is based on loyalty to family, clan and tribe; hence, you could have subjects of Arab states  who would view their contributions to  these designated terrorist groups as  simply  Zakat  or Charity  in support of following the way of Allah, jihad. Bates asked how Saudi Arabia and the UAE could control that. I responded by saying  perhaps the US Treasury Undersecretary  for Finance and Terrorism might advise them, as  we apparently know  who are these financiers are.

When the question of what Israel might do, we referred to American –Israeli Vic Rosenthal suggestions in his blog, Abu Yehuda.  Rosenthal’s suggestions included the Knesset passing a Basic Law declaring Israel a Jewish State, Annexing Area C that includes Judea and Samaria, leaving Areas B and D on the West Bank as an autonomous entity with 98 % of the Palestinians in the West Bank. However that still left the matter of dealing with the ironic situation of disloyal Arab Muslim Members in Israel’s Knesset engaging in seditious acts seeking to foster the destruction of the Jewish State. Then there is the ISIS wannabe Israel Arab Muslim Sheik Real Salah of the Northern Branch of the Islamic Movement inciting violence against Jewish, Christian and Druze citizens seeking to declare a Caliphate to supplant Israel. The Knesset might adopt legal proceedings to be conducted to deprive citizenship and eject such individuals. That is, if the Israeli High Court doesn’t overturn it.

On the matter of what the new GOP controlled US Congress might do when the 114th session begins on January 3, 2015, we offered some suggestions. Congress might seriously   consider defunding the Palestinian Authority.  It might deny US funding for reconstruction of war torn Gaza. That might raise the question of depopulating Gaza, allowing voluntary transfer elsewhere in the region. Something that Egypt and other Members of the Arab League had heretofore barred.  Now Egypt has effectively created a buffer zone in the Rafah gap destroying housing and smuggling tunnels, isolating the residents of Gaza. Perhaps, if this fantasy occurred Gaza might serve as a safe haven for persecuted Middle East Christians.

Listen to the 1330 WEBY “Your Turn” discussion, Segment 1Segment 2, Segment 3 and Segment 4.

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

Florida’s State Senator Alan Hays takes up a new cause: D’Sousa’s film America

We know from our work with Florida State Senator Alan Hays (R District 11-Umatilla) that once he signs on to important legislation he is virtually unstoppable. That was the case in his four year battle to get a unique version of American Law for American Courts (ALAC) passed and enacted into law in the Sunshine State. Rabbi Jonathan Hausman, Florida Christian Family Coalition executive director Anthony Verdugo and I know his effectiveness, up close and personal, from working with him on the successful passage of ALAC in the 2014 legislative session.

Senator Alan Hayes

Florida State Senator Alan Hays

But that wasn’t all, he led the charge in the Florida Senate passing important legislation during the same legislative session assuring that world history texts used by school local districts are reviewed to assure that they are both accurate and fact-based. Back in the 2012 we also worked with him in successfully passing a Florida version of the Stand with Israel Resolution with unanimous bi-partisan vote.

Now, Hays has a new cause. According to an article in the Hollywood Reporter, Hays will introduce a one page bill in November 2014 mandating the viewing of Dinesh D’Souza’s new docudrama, America: Imagine the World Without her  in 1,700 Florida public middle and high schools, unless objected to by parents.  D’Souza’s also produced the docudrama 2016: Obama’s America. His latest film launched this month is based on the companion book by the same title, currently No. 2 on the New York Times best seller list. This despite the rising conservative media star D’Souza’s  political finance legal problems.

Watch the Trailer for America.

The Hollywood Reporter report noted Hays’ reasons for his proposed legislation:

Hays said the purpose of his proposal is to introduce more balance into Florida schools.

“I saw the movie and walked out of the theater and said, ‘Wow, our students need to see this.’ And it’s my plan to show it to my colleagues in the legislature, too, before they’re asked to vote on the bill,” Hays said.

I’ve looked at history books and talked to history teachers and the message the students are getting is very different from what is in the movie,” Hays said. “It’s dishonest and insulting. The students need to see the truth without political favoritism.”

“The most dreaded disease in America today is political correctness. We need to inform our students of our whole history, and teach them how to think, not what to think,” Hays said. “Let them talk with their teachers, their peers and their parents, then draw their own conclusions. But they need both sides, and this movie shows a side they just aren’t seeing.”

Hays said his intent is to reach out to charitable groups that would supply schools with the necessary copies of the movie so as not to burden Florida taxpayers.

As Hays noted, that might mean pairing off D’Sousa’s  with  the oeuvre of liberal filmmakers currently shown in Florida’s schools. The Hollywood reporter noted:

To that end, Hays said he wouldn’t object if teachers paired America with a liberal film to show the political differences. Indeed, many schools already show Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth and some of Michael Moore’s left-leaning films, though it’s certainly more unusual to actually require the viewing of a particular movie, as Hays intends with his bill.

We wish Hays the best on his new cause. American history, taught in public school classrooms, doesn’t need inaccurate politically correct meta narratives passed off as truth.  Bravo to our friend Sen. Hays for picking up the cudgel on this important initiative.

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

Florida Legislature Passes Two Landmark Bills: Textbooks and American Laws for American Courts

Senator Hays

Florida Senator Alan Hays.

After four years of trying in the face of misinformed opposition, an amended version of American Law for American Courts (ALAC) SB 386 passed the Florida Legislature this week.  The Senate sponsor of SB 386, Senator Alan Hays, Republican of Umatilla, said on Monday, April 28th when the Senate voted to pass the measure by 24 Republicans to 14 Democrats:

I am delighted that my colleagues in the Florida Senate passed SB 386 – The Application of Foreign Law in Certain Cases -this morning.

It is my fervent desire to make sure everyone in a Florida courtroom is  protected from the imposition of any foreign law that may diminish the rights of that person which are afforded by our US and Florida Constitutions.  This bill codifies case law to offer those protections and is a welcome addition to the statutes of our state.

I sincerely appreciate the efforts of many others who assisted in the passage of this landmark legislation.

Fl. Rep. Mike Hill

Florida Rep. Mike Hill

House Rep. Mike Hill, Republican from Pensacola, a member of the Subcommittee on Civil Justice, following   House approval on April 30th of HB 903 by 78 Republicans to 40 Democrats, said:

I am honored to join my colleagues and vote ‘yes’ on the bill that passed the Florida House today codifying that American law only will be used in Florida courts.  It is our duty to do so as I took an oath to protect the Constitutions of the United States and the State of Florida.

The Amended version of SB 386 was adopted to overwhelm five Amendments put up by opposition minority Democrats prior to the floor debate that began last Friday, April 25th.The compromise reached was to take up an Amendment formerly offered and waived by Republican Senator David Simmons of Altamonte Springs in previous House and Senate Committee hearings. The Simmons Amendment would codify Florida case law. However, it would assist in addressing Sharia compliant parental abduction in violation of Florida, US and international law.Given Florida legislative procedures, the House passed the Senate version.Now the measure awaits enactment into law upon review by Florida Governor Rick Scott.

Rabbi Jonathan H. Hausman small

Rabbi Jonathan Hausman

Rabbi Jonathan Hausman and I were in the Florida House Public Gallery on Tuesday, April 29th witnessing the floor debate with questions from opposition Democrats to House bill sponsor Rep. Neil Combee.   Misinformed, they persisted in asking why the measure was necessary and alleged conflicts over recognition of Israeli rabbinic divorce decrees and business contracts.Rep. Combee cited both lower court and appellate level cases in which foreign law had been recognized that did not comply with the comity principles under Florida practice as justification for passing the measure.

The alleged problems cited by Democrat members of the Florida House; i.e., non-recognition of Israeli family court decisions had been investigated and found misleading. That effort was based on published research by Professor Daphna Hackner, a Tel Aviv University Family law expert and arguments presented in a video and letter to Florida legislators by Rabbi Hausman, a member of two state bars and expert in both Jewish Halacha and Islamic Sharia.

Prior to the Senate and House deliberations on SB 386/HB 903 we suggested to the bill sponsors that the Amended version be reviewed by Stephen M. Gelé, Esq. of the New Orleans law firm of Smith Fawer LLC.  Today, despite his being on vacation, Gelé sent his assessment on the legislation that we received via Christopher Holton of ACT!  Gelé said:

The Florida Legislature recently passed SB 386, a bill that will help protect Floridians from foreign law that is inconsistent with American values, such as Islamic Sharia law.  When hopefully signed into law by Governor Scott, the bill will: help protect Florida parents who face loss of their children to a foreign custody judgment; help protect spouses who face unfair foreign judgments of divorce, spousal support, or marital property distributions; help protect parents and spouses from marital contracts (including Islamic marital contracts often named mahrs) that would force decisions regarding child custody, spousal support and marital property distributions to be decided in foreign courts or under foreign law in American courts; and, help protect parents and spouses from having disputes regarding child custody, spousal support and marital property distributions from being dismissed by Florida courts in favor being decided in  foreign courts.

Although American and Florida courts have held in the past that foreign law should not be applied when the foreign law offends public policy, this concept has not previously been strengthened by statute. Further, under current Florida child custody statutes a judge can refuse to enforce a foreign custody judgment only “if the child custody law of a foreign country violates fundamental principles of human rights.”  Unfortunately, statements by the U.S. State Department suggest that “fundamental principles of human rights” should be interpreted more narrowly than most Americans would interpret the phrase.  However, SB 386 allows a Florida judge to refuse to enforce a foreign custody judgment under the much broader standard of whether the judgment offends the public policy of Florida.

Therefore, the most important effect of the change in the law would be to protect parents from losing their children to foreign custody decrees, which has happened before.

Margaret McLain

Prof. Margaret McLain

Gele’s comments are reflective of a new theme adopted based on the recommendation by Kansas House Speaker Pro TemporeRep. Peg Mast. Mast successfully secured bi-partisan support for passage of ALAC in the 2012 session in Topeka. She suggested emphasizing protection of “fundamental Constitutional rights” for Florida women and children. That meant putting a human face to the theme of the foreign law war on women and children. This was reflected in New English Review  interviews with two women.

One interview was with retired Arkansas State University Professor Margaret McClain. She spoke in Tallahassee on March 13, 2014 to a group of citizen lobbyists about the abduction and removal of her five  year old daughter Heidi to Saudi Arabia by her Saudi ex-husband in violation of state, federal and international law, but condoned under Sharia

Yasmeen A_ Davis  NER interview 3-17-14

Yasmeen A. Davis

Then there was the interview with Floridian Yasmeen A. Davis who told about her abduction by her Saudi father at age 11 and her treatment under Sharia in his home in Saudi Arabia until rescued by her family at age 13.  Now 28 she still suffers PTSD from the episode.

One of the premiere groups in providing ground forces to obtain commitments for the legislation is the Christian Family Coalition (CFC) of Florida led by its highly effective executive director, Anthony Verdugo. CFC has more than 5,000 members and supporters working with over 1,000 Churches in the state. CFC demonstrated its prowess by supporting social issue legislation that passed the Florida legislature and a bi-partisan Support for Israel resolution in 2012.  CFC made the legislation a priority for passage in 2014 and held several training sessions with members to equip them with FAQs documents and arguments as to why the bills should be passed countering the misinformation of opponents.  On March 13, 2014  following talks by both Senator Hays and Professor McClain at the CFC’s Annual Leadership Prayer Breakfast in Tallahassee, 75 citizen-lobbyists fanned out buttonholing Senators and Representatives presenting the rationale behind  the CFC legislative priorities.  By the afternoon of March 13th, these CFC citizen lobbyists had successfully obtained 39 commitments in support of bills and other CFC legislative priorities.

Fl Rep Matt Gaetz

Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz

Without the dogged determination of the legislation’s sponsors like Sen. Hays and Rep. Combee with the support of advocates in the House Reps. Mike Hill, Larry Metz and Matt Gaetz, what occurred this week might not have happened.

That was abetted by a new and important theme, protecting the Constitutional rights of women and children.  This was assisted by able ground forces from the CFC and other concerned citizen activists securing legislator commitments.

But that is not all that occurred in Tallahassee this week.

Earlier this month, Sen. Hays had also deftly maneuvered a companion measure directed at text book review, SB 864, passed the Senate with a thin vote tally of 21 Republicans  to 19 Democrat. The measure would reverse State Department of Education control over selection of textbooks returning that role to Florida’s 67 school districts, requiring open public hearing on texts used in courses.  SB 864 was largely prompted by a different issue; objections of parental groups in several Florida counties about the treatment of Islam and Muslim culture in world history textbooks that are on the Florida State Department of Education list of approved texts.

Today, the House passed the amended SB864/HB 921 by a resounding bi-partisan 117 yeas with 2 not voting.

Fl Rep_ Larry Metz

Florida Rep. Larry Metz

Like the experience with SB 386, SB 864/HB 921: “on K to 12 instruction materials”, was amended following a conference with both Senate and House sponsors and consultation with the Governor’s office.  While it may require clarification that standards of fact-based accurate depictions in world history texts should be adhered to, the legislation does create a process giving parents relief who object at the school district  level  to specific instructional material triggering  a public hearing.  The legislation  also adds requirements that instructional materials “accurately portray the religious and physical diversity of our society”. Further, it makes the school district boards responsible for the content of all instructional materials used in the classroom.  One important requirement is that the amended legislation would add a new topic in the curriculum specified in 1003.42, F.S. –“the events surrounding the terrorist attacks occurring on 9/11/01 and the impacts of those events on the nation”.

Those of us who have been involved with the support of both measures consider them landmarks for possible consideration in other US states.  This might not satisfy all of the concerns in certain quarters; however, they reflect two well turned precepts.  Voltaire wrote: “a wise Italian says that the best is the enemy of the good”.   German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck said:  “politics is the art of the possible”.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on The New English Review.

J-Street: Dividing the Jewish community’s support for Israel?

On Monday night of Presidents’ Weekend, Americans for Peace and Tolerance (APT) premiered a new film, The J Street Challenge, to an audience of 400 at a theater in Miami Beach. It is the latest in a series of provocative films by Avi Goldwasser and Charles Jacobs.

These films include: Columbia Unbecomingabout intimidation of Jewish students by pro-Palestinian faculty at an elite university; Northeastern Unbecoming, a documentary about the hostility to Israel and Jews on the campus of Northeastern University in Boston:

[youtube]http://youtu.be/HK0DRnbUziw[/youtube]

… and the award-winning film The Forgotten Refugees – which explores the history, culture, and forced exodus of over 900,000 Jews from Middle Eastern and North African Jewish communities in the second half of the 20th century:

[youtube]http://youtu.be/KH8RL2XRr48[/youtube]

Watch the trailer for  The  J Street Challenge here:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ABCDEFGH[/youtube]

The J Street Challenge makes effective use of  J Street video, direct interviews with notable critics and archival footage, removing  the mask from the face of J Street leader Jeremy Ben Ami. The film graphically shows the perfidy of J Street’s alleged “pro Israel” messaging versus its actions. The takeaway from watching this film is that J Street is misleading Jewish students on college campuses about its real intention — the isolation of the Jewish state. In her Arutz Sheva Israel National News film review, Phyllis Chesler, commented:

Jeremy Ben-Ami may be a far more dangerous and morally problematic traitor to his people than were any of the Judenrat leaders during the Shoah. I say this because no one is threatening Ben-Ami with imminent death (each kapo and judenrat leader was death threatened while in captivity). Ben Ami lives in the United States and is a free man.

Yet, in classic Orwellian style, he presents his organization as both “pro-peace” and “pro-Israel” when he is neither. He condemns Israel at every turn and he does so in an era when Israel is under existential siege and a Second Holocaust is fully underway in slow motion. Jews are being blamed for and physically attacked outside of Israel because of Israel’s alleged “apartheid” and “occupation” policies. Israeli civilians are also being attacked—blown up, knifed—inside Israel proper.

The war against the Jews and the Jewish state rages on as never before at the United Nations, the European Union, among intellectuals and academics, on campuses, and within international human rights organizations. The Big Lies and filthy propaganda may be found 24/7 on the internet and in well-made documentaries as well as in prize-winning feature films.

The J Street Challenge is short, powerful, and an absolute must-see.

The J Street Challenge jpeg_ 2-19-14Among the J Street critics included in the film are: Lenny Ben-David, Alan Dershowitz, Carolyn Glick, Daniel Gordis, Charles Jacobs, Richard Landes, Andrea Levin, Bret Stephens, Ruth Wisse, Josh Block, Roz Rothstein and Noah Pollack.

Professor Richard Landes of Boston University commented in the film that many of J Street’s supporters are engaging in feel-good  “moral narcissism:”

[T]heir hyper-criticism of Israel functions as a way of showing their moral superiority. They contrast their own universalist concern for all the world’s people, with “small minded” Zionists who care only about their small tribe. J Street ally, Peter Beinert takes this to its logical extreme. Distorting Jewish prophetic tradition, he claims that Jewish values demand the creation of a Palestinian state at Israel’s pre-War 1967 borders, and the removal of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria. J Street only blames Israel for the lack of peace and is notably silent about Palestinian terrorism and threats.

Lenny Ben David, former Chief of Mission at the Israeli Embassy in Washington, DC reveals through his research into through IRS filings who funds J Street. Among those backers and partners are George Soros, and Muslim Brotherhood Front groups in the US, MPAC and the National Iranian American Council.

This film should be adopted by those who care about the future of Israel and the American Jewish community. It must be shown in Jewish high schools, temples and JCCs. It must be used to wake the Jewish community to the deception employed by J Street to exploit the idealism and naviete of many well intentioned young Jews.

There is the moral blindness among American mainstream Jewish organizations and leaders, who have adopted false belief in dialogue as the solution to all human conflicts. Take for example funding support for the Olive Tree Initiative by an affiliate of the Orange county California Federation, sending unwary UC-Irvine students  who “accidentally” meet leaders of Hamas. Is this any different from J Street U sending Jewish student to pay homage at the grave of the late Yassir Arafat in Ramallah? The Palestinian Authority’s corrupt Holocaust-denying leaders are portrayed in The J Street Challenge film as honest men ready to make peace with the Jewish state. The film shows how these Arab leaders espouse peace to naive Jews in English and in Arabic they spout the classic Islamic doctrine of Jew-hatred and murder. Only one Jewish Federation in America, the Sarasota-Manatee Federation, had the courage to sign the a pledge against self destruction of American Jews through similar programs espoused by J Street and anti-Zionist ally, Jewish Voices for Peace in the BDS movement. There are Reform Temples and Federations in Nashville, Tennessee who defend dialog with local Muslim community leaders, among them are those who converted Carlos Bledsoe, aka Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad, who became a homegrown jihadi.  Bledsoe/Muhammad in June 2009, on his way to his fateful murder of Army Pvt. Andy Long at an Army recruiting center in Arkansas, firebombed the home of an orthodox rabbi in Nashville and shot up the home of a rabbi in Little Rock. (See the acclaimed APT production, Losing our Sons).

Chesler noted in her review the powerful J Street rabbinic cabinet. This makes it all the more important that members of the rabbinate who reject the moral perversion of J Street should be involved in promotion of the APT film. We refer to valued friends in this struggle, Rabbis Jonathan Hausman in Massachusetts, Aryeh Spero in New York, Dr. Bernhard Rosenberg in New Jersey and the venerable theologian and noted author Dr. Richard L. Rubenstein. They have been wrongly and unfairly criticized by their rabbinic colleagues for combating J Street, yet these stalwart rabbis are the Zionist truth tellers. Norman Podhoretz called this J Street perversion of Judaism the equivalent of “worshipping at the torah of liberalism.” See our Iconoclast post, “Why are Jews Liberals?.

There is an irony about J Street leader Jeremy Ben Ami’s family background. We have a copy of a Bergson Pageant, “We will Never Die” Program in Philadelphia circa 1943 courtesy of Rabbi Hausman’s late mother. In it is a picture of Jeremy’s father, Yitzhak, one of the six Revisionist Palestinian Jews who came to recruit a Jewish Army to fight the Nazis and to lobby Congress successfully to save the remnant of European Jews. We wonder what Jeremy father would say about how far his son has fallen promoting the isolation of the sovereign Jewish homeland and six million Jews who live there — an Israel providing a bastion for Jews endangered by degenerate anti-Semitic hatred in Europe and elsewhere.

Kol Hakavod to the APT team for producing The J Street Challenge. Now let’s do what we can to ensure that this production is viewed in local Jewish communities across America so that we can expose the perfidy of J Street and Jeremy Ben Ami.

 EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on The New English Review.