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Archbishop of Canterbury: People are afraid, very afraid of mass Muslim migration

Well, this is refreshing! A major Christian leader somewhere in the world has the nerve to say it while admonishing all of those who link that fear to racism.

Waiting in Calais for passage to the UK

Illegal migrants waiting in Calais for passage to the United Kingdom.

And, he dares to say this:

‘You can’t say, “God says you must vote this way or that way”.’

So take a lesson US Catholic Bishops, Lutherans, Evangelicals, and the rest of you supposed Christians!

From the Daily Mail:

Britain has a ‘genuine and justified’ fear of mass immigration, the Archbishop of Canterbury declared last night.

The country’s most senior churchman said it was ‘absolutely outrageous’ to dismiss the public’s legitimate concerns as racist.

Archbishop Justin Welby warned: ‘There is a genuine fear. And it is really important that that fear is listened to and addressed.

There have to be resources put in place that address those fears.’

He added: ‘What happens about housing? What happens about jobs? What happens about access to health services?’

archbishop of Canterbury

Justin Welby, The Archbishop of Canterbury.

Campaign groups last night welcomed his powerful intervention as a ‘marvellous breath of fresh air’. It comes after years in which the liberal Left has attacked those expressing concern about the unprecedented levels of immigration into Britain as bigots.

Archbishop Welby also revealed that the Church would not be taking a position in the EU referendum debate.

He was highly critical of Europe’s response to the refugee crisis, but added: ‘You can’t say, “God says you must vote this way or that way”.’

Continue reading here.

Unfortunately, Archbishop Welby still thinks the UK should take in more refugees, but I expect his position will change on that too once they come in larger numbers from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.

For our complete ‘Invasion of Europe’ archive, click here.

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EDITORS NOTE: The featured image of Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, is courtesy of the New York Times.

Syed Farook’s Mother a Suspect in the San Bernardino Slaughter?

Evidence is mounting the mother of Syed Razwin Farook, who with wife Tafsheen Malik killed 14  injuring 21 in the San Bernardino Jihad Massacre,  may become a suspect in the Islamic Terrorism plot. Packaging, gun range practice targets and tools were found in the car registered in the name of Rafia Farook. Moreover, Fox News intelligence correspondent Catherine Herridge disclosed that Syed  Farook’s Union bank records showed a  $28,500 deposit  from the alleged proceeds of a loan  from the Utah-based web bank.com two weeks before the December 2nd attack  at the Christmas Party gathering of the County Health Department.

The records further revealed three transfers of $5,000 each, totaling  $15,000, were made to Syed’s mother.

Further, there was evidence in the Redlands , California rented home that Rafia had been a member of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), a Pakistani fundamentalist Muslim group, whose adherents in the U.S. had been involved in terrorism plots both in the U.S. and in Pakistan. Rafia had lived with her son Syed and his late wife  Ms. Malik allegedly caring for their six month old daughter. Lawyers for Rafia had denied she had any knowledge of her son Syed and his wife Tashfeen amassing  weapons, ammunition and manufacturing  pipe bombs and IEDs  in the garage of the rented Redlands, California town house.

Rafia Farook1

Rafia Farook

Fox News’ Megan Kelly File reported on  the evidence found in Rafia’s registered car:

Trace Gallagher reported on “The Kelly File” that FBI agents found an empty GoPro camera package, shooting targets and tools inside a car belonging to Rafia Farook, the mother of Syed Farook.

Gallagher said those items raised a number of red flags because investigators know that the husband and wife killers took numerous trips to gun ranges for target practice and were building homemade explosive devices, which could explain the targets and tools.

Gallagher said that the GoPro package is significant because even though authorities have denied that the shooters strapped cameras to themselves before the massacre, mounted GoPros have been used by ISIS followers in other attacks.

“Even mundane items found inside the car, like U-Haul receipts and notebook and legal documents could ultimately help answer whether the mother could have driven the car and not noticed the tools and targets, could have lived in the house and not noticed the so-called ‘IED factory’ in the garage,'” Gallagher said.

He added as the investigation has unfolded, Rafia Farook has been placed on a terror watch list.

“When it comes to what, if anything, the mother knew, Attorney General Loretta Lynch says they are looking very, very closely,” Gallagher said.

The Daily Caller revealed Rafia Farook’s membership in the ICNA, “Shooter’s Mother Active In US Branch Of Pro-Caliphate Islamic Group:”

Rafia Farook, the mother of San Bernardino terrorist Syed Rizwan Farook, is an active member of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), a Muslim organization that promotes the establishment of a caliphate and has ties to a radical Pakistani political group called Jamaat-e-Islami. Farook’s affiliation with ICNA was revealed on Friday when MSNBC and other new outlets scoured the Farooks’ apartment in Redlands, Cal. An MSNBC reporter found a certificate of appreciation presented to Safia Farook last summer by ICNA’s sisters’ wing.

The terrorism track record of the ICNA members  and  ties to a Muslim U.S. Congressman:

Though ICNA has not been named as a target in the ongoing investigation into Wednesday’s attack, the group has been associated with many others who have engaged in terrorism or plotted to do so.

Al-Qaeda recruiter Anwar al-Awlaki has spoken at the group’s events. He spoke at an ICNA event in Baltimore in 2002, though the group has said that al-Awlaki was not radicalized at that time. Al-Awlaki exchanged emails with Nidal Hasan, the Army major who killed 13 people in a terrorist attack at Fort Hood in Nov. 2009. Al-Awlaki was killed by a U.S. drone strike in 2011 in Yemen.

Another ICNA member was indicted in April on federal terrorism charges. Noelle Valentzas and another woman were charged with plotting an attack on New York City similar to the attacks at the Boston Marathon.

As The Daily Caller uncovered at the time, Velentzas gave presentations at least two ICNA events in recent years. One of those, ICNA’s 2012 annual convention, was also attended by Indiana Rep. Andre Carson, one of two Muslims in the House of Representatives. (RELATED: One of theWomen Who Plotted NYC Attack Had Ties to U.S. Islamic Group)

And in 2009, five American students who knew each other from an ICNA mosque in Alexandria, Va. were arrested in Pakistan and charged with plotting to attack American troops in Afghanistan.

Founded in 1968 and is based in Jamaica, N.Y., ICNA is considered one of the more conservative Islamic umbrella organizations operating in the U.S. Unlike other groups like the Islamic Society of North America or the Council on American-Islamic Relations, ICNA segregates men and women at its events, a practice endorsed in the Farook household.

The  ICNA is heavily influenced by the Islamist  doctrine of Abul A’la Maududi:

ICNA is heavily reliant on the teachings of Abul A’la Maududi, the controversial Islamist founder of Jamaat-e-Islami, a political party operating in Pakistan, India and Bangladesh whose goal is to establish an Islamic state, according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).

As the ADL notes, an article in ICNA’s “The Message” stated that “using the organizational development methodology of Maulana Mawdudi and the Jamaat Al-Islami of Pakistan, which lays special emphasis on spiritual development, ICNA has developed a strong foundation.”

Maududi “is a jihadi ideologue,” according to the ADL. “He has written that ‘the nation of Jews will be exterminated’ in the end of days.”

In one of his numerous books, Maududi wrote that devout Muslims “would be under an obligation to do their utmost to dislodge [non-Muslims] from political power and to make them live in subservience to the Islamic way of life.”

RELATED ARTICLE: President Jimmy Carter Banned Iranians from coming to the United States during the Hostage Crisis

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

Catholic University locked down after “Middle Eastern” man makes “terroristic threats”

The “shelter in place” order has been lifted now, and D.C. police have “located the suspicious person.” Now no doubt there is a long line of Catholic priests lining up to engage in “dialogue” with the poor dear, hoping to explain to him how Islam, at its core, is a religion of peace that has been tragically misunderstood. They will fix this problem up tout suite.

“D.C. police locate a ‘suspicious person’ at Catholic University,” by Martin Weil, Washington Post, December 8, 2015:

Catholic University students were advised Tuesday night for the second time in less than 24 hours to shelter in place while authorities investigated a report of a possible armed person on campus.

Just before 9 p.m., the D.C. police said they had “located the suspicious person.” About an hour later, the university said it had lifted the shelter in place order. It also said that the person who prompted Tuesday night’s alert was not the same person who was sought during the alert that began early Tuesday.

The Tuesday night alert was sent about 8:30 p.m. and advised members of the university community to shelter in place while D.C. police and the university’s public safety department investigated a report of a possible armed man.

A similar alert was issued about 1 a.m. Tuesday. Authorities said that they searched but that no one was found.

The university said the earlier alert was initiated after a custodial worker reported being approached Monday night by a man with a weapon.

The man reportedly approached the worker at Pangborn Hall about 10:30 p.m. Monday, and asked directions to the administration building.

In a message posted Tuesday on the university’s Facebook site, the university’s president, John Garvey, offered an explanation of the overnight response. He said the person had “made claims that sounded to our custodian like terroristic threats.”

A description provided on a university social media site said the individual had a Middle Eastern appearance….

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Roman Catholic bishop advocates submission to the Islamic State

This brilliant article sums up not only the myopia of Bishop Robert Barron’s approach to the Islamic State (and to the global jihad in general), but the weakness and wrongheadedness of the entire contemporary Catholic Church when confronted with jihadist savagery.

There is today a wholesale confusion of weakness and submission with compassion and mercy, such that many Church leaders, including but by no means limited to Bishop Barron, believe that Christian charity mandates acquiescence to evil and submission to it. They think it is a matter of “respect” for Muslims as human beings for Christians to bow to violent intimidation from Islamic jihadists, and to assent to restrictions on their behavior that are demanded by way of jihadi threats.

Those who think, on the contrary, that it is more respectful and charitable to Muslims to refuse to enable and reward bullying and bloodlust have no place in today’s Catholic Church.

Bishop-Robert-Barron

Bishop Robert Barron being interview on EWTN Nightly News. Photo courtesy of EWTN.

“The Incredible Shrinking Bishop Barron,” by Maureen Mullarkey, OnePeterFive, November 23, 2015 (thanks to Tom):

I have never been more than an occasional viewer of Fr. Robert Barron’s Word on Fire chats. His recent televised interview with EWTN’s Catherine Szeltner put paid to whatever interest I had.

Newly elevated to an auxiliary bishop in the sprawling L.A. diocese, now-Bp. Barron was in Baltimore for his initial appearance among the USCCB. Ms. Szeltner was on hand to ask how Catholics should respond to the slaughter in Paris. “How should they react?” she wondered, as if Catholics were dependent on guidance in their attitude toward carnage.

This was hardly a spontaneous interview. Chairs had been set. The bishop had not been caught on the run; he was not speaking off the cuff. On the contrary, it is standard practice to establish before air time which questions will be asked. Ms. Szaltner was wide-eyed with anticipation for an answer that had already been rehearsed. Here was the fledgling bishop’s moment to affirm public solidarity with the mantra of love heralding the Year of Mercy. Which—the Vatican just announced—extends to Muslims.

Barron began with a self-reverential response that carried a hint of conceit for having been placed among the great and the good. Our new bishop has ascended above even just anger. The massacre aroused no outrage, not even a wince of distaste. Rather, his first words were on fire with . . . nostalgia. He found the atrocity “especially poignant” because he had studied in Paris for three years. And because he remembered some of the locations involved, the attacks were “moving and poignant.”

Not obscene, not demonic, foul or repellant. Poignant. It is a word appropriate for the death of a kitten. Applied to the murder and maiming of innocents, it is worse than unfitting. It is shameful.

He glided on to a serene tutorial on mercy, on the obligation to “respond to violence with love,” and “to fight hatred with love.” He enjoined Catholics to mercy and “a non-violent stance.” Listening, I realized why I have never been able to cotton to Word on Fire: Barron is smarmy. His genial TV persona has none of the alert, intellectual muscularity of Fulton Sheen whose lead he presumes to follow. This time on camera, he confused Paris in 2015 with Selma, Alabama in 1965.

Sanctimonious appeal to non-violence is typical of middle-brow respect for the strategy of King—learned from Gandhi—minus any grasp of its genius. There is nothing commensurate between the cultural situation of the American civil rights movement and the events in Paris. To try to impose the conditions of that movement onto Islamic jihad is astonishing in its obtuseness. Mercy is vacated of all meaning when it is used as an excuse for blindness to history, or for inaction in the face of present realities.

Genocide was never the end game of either the British or the segregationist forces in the United States. Genocide—mitigated only by conversion or the slavery of dhimmitude— is an objective of Islam. Barron misleads his audience with bankrupt, Vatican-stroking noises about nonviolence.

The limited applications of non-violence were obvious when, in 1938, Gandhi advised Europe’s Jews to practice nonviolent resistance against Nazi persecution. In some mystical way, this would supposedly result in Germany’s moral reformation. Nearly eighty years later, Bishop Barron offers the same futile rationale—in the name of Christ crucified—to Catholics.

Inversion of circumstances between Islam and the West is as bizarre as it is reckless. Non-violence is the resort of the weak against the strong. By inviting Catholics to adopt “a non-violent stance” against jihad, Barron insinuates assent to inferiority. It is a failure of will dressed in Christian idiom. Call it submission.

In practical terms, what does it mean to respond with love to genocidal intention? How is non-violence applicable to a contest of civilizations in which one side is committed to the annihilation of the other? Wherein lies the moral force of non-violence against a bloodlust cultivated for fourteen hundred years?

Gandhi’s notorious advice to Jews was tantamount to telling them to march quietly to the ovens. Whether satyagraha serves freedom or a final solution depends on the variables of situation. Bishop Barron’s inability to discern critical distinctions makes his ministry dangerous.

He remains a cheery, good-natured promoter. Sadly, what he promotes is dhimmitude.

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Hamas-linked CAIR ejects Breitbart reporter from anti-Ben Carson press conference

“We believe in a conversation,” Awad said, but Hamas-linked CAIR really only wants a conversation with those who toe its line. In reality, Hamas-linked CAIR works hard to shut down, demonize and marginalize anyone who speaks honestly about the jihad threat. The only conversation they want is one with their sycophants in the mainstream media and the Obama Administration.

It’s a manifestation of a deep insecurity, as well as an underlying authoritarianism and thuggery, for Hamas-linked CAIR to expel Munro and bar him from the premises. It demonstrates that underneath all Hooper’s bluster, he is a coward: he knows he can’t counter what Munro says, and can’t answer any probing questions (as opposed to the loving softballs he routinely gets from the mainstream media), so he has to resort to strongarm tactics. There are cowardly little bullies like Hooper all over America today — on college campuses, in the media, in politics, and in general almost every place where there used the possibility of free and honest discourse.

Munro Hooper

“CAIR’s Islamists Eject Breitbart From Their Anti-Carson Press Conference,” by Neil Munro, Breitbart, September 21, 2015:

Islamic advocates ejected a Breitbart News reporter from a Sept. 21 news conference in Washington D.C. The Council on American-Islamic Relations was hosting the event to complain about Dr. Ben Carson’s criticism of Islamic intolerance.

Ibrahim Hooper, an American convert to the 1,200 year-old religion, also threatened to eject the Breitbart reporter from any future conferences, and admitted in front of multiple TV cameras that he had ejected the reporter from a prior press conference.

Speakers at the event included CAIR’s co-founder Nihad Awad and several others. “We believe in a conversation,” Awad said. “What unites us as Americans is…. our Constitution,” he claimed.

At the end of the statements, Awad’s spokesman announced that Breitbart’s reporter he would not be allowed to ask questions during the short question and answer period.

Immediately after the question and answer session, Hooper intervened again to stop a conversation about Islam between Breitbart and one of the speakers.

“He is just one of the hate-mongers,” Hooper said about the Breitbart reporter. The CAIR speaker said he wanted to continue the conversation, but Hooper insisted that the reporter be forced out from the event. “Could you take it outside? We have you to leave. We have to ask him to leave. We have asked him to leave in previous news conferences, so we just ask you to leave, please,” Hooper said.

To clarify: “Yes, I’m throwing you out,” Hooper added.

Meet the U.S. Professors who love Obama’s Iran Nuke Deal

It isn’t surprising that Aslan and Cole would be cheer-leading for this disastrous deal, since they are both Board members of the National Iranian American Council (NIAC). NIAC has been established in court as a lobbying group for the Islamic Republic of Iran. Said Michael Rubin: “Jamal Abdi, NIAC’s policy director, now appears to push aside any pretense that NIAC is something other than Iran’s lobby. Speaking at the forthcoming ‘Expose AIPAC’ conference, Abdi is featured on the ‘Training: Constituent Lobbying for Iran’ panel. Oops.” Iranian freedom activist Hassan Daioleslam“documented over a two-year period that NIAC is a front group lobbying on behalf of the Iranian regime.” NIAC had to pay him nearly $200,000 in legal fees after they sued him for defamation over his accusation that they were a front group for the mullahs, and lost. Yet Aslan and Cole remain on their Board.

Aslan also may genuinely like this deal, not simply because he is a subversive, but because he is an imbecile — a prime example of an empty-headed charlatan propped up by the mainstream media (and, no doubt, handlers who are far more intelligent than their front man) because he reflects currently acceptable thinking. But all too frequently, his true intellectual level shines through: he thinks Ethiopia and Eritrea are in Central Africa. He called Turkey the second most populous Muslim country, which was only about 100 million people off. He has also referred to “the reincarnation, which Christianity talks about” — although he later claimed that one was a “typo.” Aslan has claimed that Muhammad outlawed slavery (the Muslim prophet actually owned slaves). Aslan has asserted that Marx and Freud “gave birth to the Enlightenment” (both were born after it ended). He has insisted that the idea of resurrection “simply doesn’t exist in Judaism,” despite numerous passages to the contrary in the Hebrew Scriptures.

Video of Reza Aslan Dancing for Peace:

Aslan has also claimed that the Biblical story of Noah was barely four verses long — which he then corrected to forty, but that was wrong again, as it is 89 verses long. Aslan claimed that the “founding philosophy of the Jesuits” was “the preferential option for the poor,” but the Jesuits were founded in 1534, and according to the California Catholic Conference, “the popular term ‘preferential option for the poor’ is relatively new. Its first use in a Church document is in 1968.” He invoked Pope Pius XI as an example of how “historically, Fascist ideology did infect corners of the Catholic world,” apparently ignorant of the fact that Pius XI issued the anti-fascist encyclical Mit Brennender Sorge.

Similarly, Aslan has revealed that he can barely write English, indicating that his books are either ghostwritten or very heavily edited: he confuses “than” with “then”; apparently thinks the Latin word “et” is an abbreviation; and writes “clown’s” for “clowns.”

And as for the other academics listed here, Hatem Bazian actually pretends that “Islamophobia” as an academic discipline, issuing smears and libels in psuedo-academic dress of foes of jihad terror.

This is the intellectual caliber of American academia today.

“The Profs Who Love Obama’s Iran Deal,” by Cinnamon Stillwell, FrontPage, August 10, 2015:

Who supports the Obama administration’s increasingly unpopular Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) aimed ostensibly at curbing Iran’s nuclear program? Many of its strongest proponents come from the field of Middle East studies, which boasts widespread animus towards the U.S. and Israel along with a cadre of apologists for the Iranian regime determined to promote ineffectual diplomacy at all costs.

University of California, Riverside creative writing professor Reza Aslan concedes that his generation of Iranian-Americans “feel[s] far removed from the political and religious turmoil of the Iranian revolution” before falling in line with the Iranian regime’s propaganda: the deal will “empower moderates in Iran, strengthen Iranian civil society and spur economic development,” and create “an Iran that is a responsible actor on the global stage, that respects the rights of its citizens and that has warm relations with the rest of the world.” “Warm relations” are the least likely outcome of the increase in funding for Iran’s terrorist proxies Hamas and Hezbollah that even President Obama admits will follow the easing of sanctions.

Flynt Leverett, an international relations professor at Pennsylvania State University, whitewashes these terrorist groups as “constituencies” and “communities” which the Iranian regime “help[s] organize in various ways to press their grievances more effectively,” effective terrorism being, for Leverett, a laudable goal.  Characterizing the regime as “a rising regional power” and “legitimate political order for most Iranians,” he urges the U.S., through the JCPOA, to “come to terms with this reality.”

Diablo Valley College Middle East studies instructor Amer Araim’s seemingly wishful thinking is equally supportive of Tehran’s line: “it is sincerely hoped that these funds will be used to help the Iranian people develop their economy and to ensure prosperity in that country.” Meanwhile, Hooshang Amirahmadi, an Iranian-American international relations professor at Rutgers University, attempts to legitimize the regime by delegitimizing the sanctions: “The money that will flow to Iran under this deal is not a gift: this is Iran’s money that has been frozen and otherwise blocked.”

Others deny the Iranian regime intends to build a nuclear bomb. University of Michigan history professor Juan Cole has “long argued that [Iran’s leader Ali] Khamenei is sincere about not wanting a nuclear weapon” because of his “oral fatwas or legal rulings” indicating that “using such weapons is contrary to Islamic law.” His unwarranted confidence in the regime leads him to conclude:

[T]hey have developed all the infrastructure and technical knowledge and equipment that would be necessary to make a nuclear weapon, but stop there, much the way Japan has.

Evidently, Cole has no problem with a tyrannical, terrorist-supporting regime that seeks regional hegemony on the threshold of becoming a nuclear power.

Likewise, William Beeman, an anthropology professor at the University of Minnesota, maintains that, “It was . . .  easy for Iran to give up a nuclear weapons program that never existed, and that it never intended to implement.” Like Cole, he uncritically accepts and recites the regime’s disinformation: “Iran’s leaders have regularly denounced nuclear weapons as un-Islamic.”

Beeman—who, in previous negotiations with the Iranian regime, urged the U.S. to be “unfailingly polite and humble” and not to set “pre-conditions” regarding its nuclear program—coldly disregards criticism of the JCPOA for excluding conditions such as the “release of [American] political prisoners” and “recognition of Israel,” calling them “utterly irrelevant.” No doubt the relatives of those prisoners and the Israeli citizens who live in the crosshairs of the regime’s continued threats of annihilation would disagree.

A number of academics have resorted to classic anti-Semitic conspiracy mongering to attack the deal’s Israeli and American opponents, calling them the “Israel Lobby.”Muqtedar Khan, director of the Islamic Studies Program at the University of Delaware, accuses “the Israeli government and all those in the U.S. who are under the influence of its American lobbies” of obstructing the deal, claiming that, “The GOP congress is now being described as the [Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin] Netanyahu congress.”

Hatem Bazian, director of the Islamophobia Research & Documentation Project at the University of California, Berkeley, takes aim at “pro-Israel neo-conservatives,” “neo-conservative warmongers,” “AIPAC,” and (in a mangled version of “Israel-firster”) “Israel’s first D.C. crowd” for “attempting to scuttle the agreement.” Asserting a moral equivalence between the dictatorial Iranian regime and the democratically-elected Israeli government, Bazian demands to know when Israel’s “pile of un-inspected or regulated nuclear weapons stockpile” will be examined before answering, “It is not going to happen anytime soon!” That Israel has never threatened any country with destruction, even after being attacked repeatedly since its rebirth, is a fact ignored by its critics.

The unhinged Facebook posts of Columbia University Iranian studies professor and Iranian native Hamid Dabashi reveal in lurid language his hatred of Israel:

It is now time the exact and identical widely intrusive scrutiny and control compromising the sovereignty of the nation-state of Iran and its nuclear program be applied to the European settler colony of Jewish apartheid state of Israel and its infinitely more dangerous nuclear program! There must be a global uproar against the thuggish vulgarity of Netanyahu and his Zionist gangsters in Israel and the U.S. Congress to force them to dismantle their nuclear program–systematically used to terrorize and murder Palestinian people and steal the rest of Palestine!

Elsewhere, Dabashi attacks adversaries of the JCPOA, including “Israel, Saudi Arabia, the U.S. Neocons, and their treacherous expat Iranian stooges masquerading as ‘Opposition,’” calling them a “terrorizing alliance,” a “gang of murderous war criminals,” and “shameless warmongers.”

Willful blindness to Iran’s brutal, terrorist-supporting regime, moral equivocation, and an irrational hatred for Israel and the West characterize the fawning support enjoyed by the mullahs from these and other professors of Middle East studies. In place of objective, rigorously researched plans for countering Iran’s aggression and advancing the safety of America and its allies, they regurgitate the crudest propaganda from Teheran. Until their field of study is thoroughly reformed, their advice—such as it is—should and must be utterly ignored.

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Fargo, ND [and everywhere else] to be Slammed with New Refugees in next Seven Weeks

Why the next seven weeks? Because fiscal year 2015 ends on September 30th and the settlers in the US State Department and in their contracting agencies want to hit the Obama target of 70,000 for the year and they have (as of July 31), 18,470 more to go!

Actually that 70,000 figure that Obama announced in his Presidential Determination Letter to Congress last September is meant to be a ceiling, not a goal that they necessarily have to hit.   However, since the contractors are paid by the head and they have salaries and office overhead to pay, they always try to shoot for the highest number they can haul in as possible.

Jessica Thomason

Jessica Thomasson, the CEO of Lutheran Social Services, says, ‘[T]he projections the next couple months are 10 to 20 percent higher than usual in North Dakota. The whole year is about 10 percent higher.”

Here is the news from WDAY-6 News (hat tip: Deb).  You will see that the school system is sweating it!  I know from my own experience that the local health department will also have to work overtime to get all the kids ready for school — our poor kids and the new poor kids coming in!

Anyone out there forming a ‘Pocket of Resistance’ in North Dakota? I’m guessing that ND is getting more than usual because there is no resistance to colonization there while some other locations are seeing citizen push-back.

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) – Local aid organizations and schools say they’re going to be very busy the next couple of months. More refugees than usual are expected to be coming.

As of July, 215 refugees had been resettled in Fargo-West Fargo and Jamestown, 21 in Moorhead and 64 in Grand Forks.

By September 30th, Fargo and West Fargo could increase to 350 new residents and the number in Grand Forks could be bumped to 100.

Jessica Thomasson/CEO, Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota, “In an ideal world, it would be spread evenly over the 12 months of that year, but we know that in a lot of years you’ll have ups and downs.”

Jessica Thomasson, the CEO of Lutheran Social Services, says the projections the next couple months are 10 to 20 percent higher than usual in North Dakota. The whole year is about 10 percent higher. She says their organization usually gets about two weeks notice of new arrivals during which they have to set up housing, furnishing and other things to prepare for a new life in a new place.

[….]

Overall, the U.S. plans to resettle 7,500 refugees this month and over 10,000 in September to meet it’s commitment of 70,000 for this fiscal year. Most of the arrivals here in metro will be Bhutanese, Somali, Iraqi and Congolese. About 75 percent have family connections here.

By the way, this last bit is what I was telling you about when I wrote about Lancaster, PA the other day.  Once you have been targeted as a resettlement site and the refugees are coming, there is no stopping the importation of the family members!

How many have you gotten in your state so far this fiscal year?  Go here and check out data on arrival by nationality and state.  As of July 31, they are at 51,530 for the year so far.

See all of our previous posts on problems with refugees in North Dakota by clicking here.   They were supposed to get Syrians this year, wonder what happened to them?

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Iran: Decision Time For Democrats

The British media traditionally refers to the month of August as ‘silly season’, but apart from the blanket coverage of the sad fate of Cecil the lion, this silly season has been notable for being remarkably un-silly. Received wisdom has it that with Parliament away there are no political stories for the media to report on. But nothing could be further from the truth this year.

The migrant crisis in the Mediterranean and stretching to Calais shows no sign of letting up just because MPs are in their constituencies or on their holidays. And nor are the stories of the continuously emerging awfulness of the Iran deal slowing just because Parliament is not in session. The fact – not very surprising – is that politics goes on all the time as usual, whether Parliament is in session or not.

It must be hoped, however, that the break does some good to our political class. Standing back from the day-to-day running of Westminster can provide an opportunity to survey the real political landscape rather than getting bogged down in the procedural issues which take up so much of any politician’s day. Watching the ongoing political fight in Washington is a reminder of this.

At the time of writing a number of very significant leading Democrats look like they are going to come out against their own President’s deal with Iran. In doing so it is perfectly possible that they are performing career hara-kiri. It seems inevitable that whether Congress votes against the deal or not the President, and those around him, are unlikely to forgive or do much to support the future of those who have voted against them. Chicago politics can work just as easily in Washington.

But the Democrats in particular who choose to vote against the deal are doing so for an extraordinary and admirable reason: they are willing to put their concern for the future of their country and the future of the world ahead of concerns over the future of their careers. It is not too cynical to say that this order of priorities is not always present in politics. But this is an important moment. Even if the President gets his way with the deal, the rebellion of a large enough number of members of his own party could still succeed in signalling just what a mistake America and her allies are making.

New stories have emerged this week of the Iranian regime’s genocidal rhetoric against America and her allies. Perhaps people are so used to this that it has become background noise. But this background noise is going on whilst in the foreground the same regime is getting the biggest financial, diplomatic and military boost it could possibly ever have. If you stand back from everything else that is going on this is the big story. What would be silly would be not to recognise that.


mendozahjs

FROM THE DIRECTOR’S DESK 

It is 70 years since the detonation of an atomic bomb at Hiroshima introduced the world to a terrifying new form of warfare in the form of nuclear weapons. Since that time much effort has been expended by nations seeking to obtain this technology, with Iran being but the latest example. Concurrently, equal attempts have been made to ensure further proliferation does not occur.

In recent weeks, I have spent a fair bit of time defending Britain’s own nuclear arsenal in the face of assaults from those who would wish to see us give up our independent nuclear deterrent when the time comes shortly to replace our ageing Trident capability. While no reasonable person could be against the idea of controlled multilateral disarmament – and great strides have been made in this direction since the peaking of nuclear arsenals in the 1980s – unilateral disarmament is quite a different prospect. It would strip the UK of the ultimate deterrent at a time of increasing, rather than decreasing, global instability, with any number of major threats on the horizon. Which British Prime Minister could credibly give up our nuclear weapons at a time when Mr Putin menaces Europe’s and NATO’s eastern borders, and the Middle East is at its most uncertain point in a century, for example?

I rather fear that the goal of ‘Global Zero’ – the push to physically eliminate nuclear weapons or to put them beyond possible use – is also doomed to failure. While noble in intent, the obvious flaw in this approach is that you cannot uninvent technology that has been invented and that as a consequence, the temptation to cheat and keep a small stockpile is just too great. Would we really trust Russia and China to give up all their weapons if we did, let alone Pakistan and North Korea?

Unfortunate as it may be, nuclear weapons are here to stay. The challenge remains to regulate their numbers, avoid their use and prevent dangerous states like Iran from acquiring them.

Dr Alan Mendoza is Executive Director of The Henry Jackson Society
Follow Alan on Twitter: @AlanMendoza

Understanding and Reacting to the Criminalization of Christianity in America

LightWins_250The LGBT agenda is steamrolling through society’s institutions – including the courts and political parties. We’ve already seen bakers and wedding businesses severely fined and punished for acting on their beliefs. Protections for religious liberty are being rejected by legislatures. And even more oppressive LGBT “anti-discrimination” laws are now being introduced in Congress.

The criminalization of Christianity and Orthodox Judaism in America is not simply speculation. It’s already happening.

What is really going on? How will it affect you? Are Biblical issues involved? What can you do about it?You’ll want to hear what America’s major leaders and activists (including Brian Camenker of MassResistance) have to say!

Over the last two years, pro-family leader Janet Porter interviewed over 50 key people in the pro-family and conservative movements. Their observations on the culture war, America, God, and how it all comes together are a real education. Titled “LIGHT WINS,” this production will definitely move you!

Copies of this outstanding DVD have been donated to MassResistance to support our activism.!

During August every person donating $150 or more will receive a free DVD of “Light Wins”!This is a great way to help support our valuable work!

To donate $150 or more and get this outstanding video:

1. Send a check to MassResistance

OR

donate by credit card HERE. (Donations to MassResistance are not tax-deductible.)

OR

2. For tax-deductible donations: Send a check to Parents Education Foundation, or call in a credit card to our office: 781-890-6001.

Mailing address for both: PO Box 1612, Waltham, MA 02454


Pro-family activist and radio host Janet Porter interviewed top leaders & activists across America for this outstanding DVD.


Governor Mike Huckabee


Phyllis Schlafly


Dr. James Dobson


Pastor Scott Lively

Fr. Frank Pavone


Brian Camenker


David Barton


William Donahue


Dr. John Diggs, Jr.


Peter LaBarbera

ALSO INCLUDED:

Matt Barber
Gary Bauer
J. Kenneth Blackwell
Lt. Gen William G. Boykin
Mark Crutcher
Joseph Farah
Dr. Jim Garlow
Gary Glenn
Congressman Louie Gohmert
Dr. Steven Hotze
Bishop Harry Jackson
Craig James
Aaron & Melissa Klein
Chap. Gordon Klingenschmitt
Dr. Alveda King
Congressman Steve King
Robert Knight
Andrea Lafferty
Troy Newman
US Senator Rand Paul
Anne Paulk
Tony Perkins
David Pickup, MA
Gregory Quinlan
Judith A. Reisman, Ph.D.
Peter Sprigg
Mat Staver
Tim Wildmon

And many more . . .

RELATED VIDEO:

Mideast Archbishops: Why is the U.S. discriminating against Syrian Christians?

They have noticed the disparity in the numbers too (see our post last evening).

From Christian Today: They need to be sending some of this anger toward the US Conference of Catholic Bishops who have been silent while resettling mostly Muslims from the Middle East as U.S. State Department refugee contractors.

Catholic archbishops from Iraq and Syria are speaking out in defense of displaced Christians who are having a difficult time in applying for US visas to enable them to escape persecution in their own country and settle in a new land, such as the US, where they can freely practice their faith.

Chaldean Archbishop Bashar Warda of Erbil, Iraq, and Melkite Archbishop Jean-Clément Jeanbart of Aleppo, Syria, spoke recently at the Knights of Columbus 2015 Convention press conference in Philadelphia, describing the plight of Christians in the Middle East, according to the Catholic News Agency.

They said they found out from official US government sources that since October last year, 906 Muslim refugees from Syria have been granted US visas. However, out of the 700,000 displaced Christians from Syria who applied for a US visa during the same period, only 28 succeeded in getting one.

Might not have come to the attention of the White House? Yeh, sure.

The archbishops said the apparent discrimination against Christians in the granting of US visas might not have reached the attention yet of the White House, but they said this is clearly a case of injustice.

“Our people are asking these questions: How come we apply for the American visa and are denied?” Archbishop Warda said. “This is a clear case of persecution. They’re being denied visas while others who have participated (in the violence) or at least were silent can go.”

See the related story here at WND about Chaldeans held in a detention center in California while others who came seeking asylum have been let go.

RELATED ARTICLE: Obama could use supposedly temporary ‘humanitarian’ parole to get more Syrians admitted to U.S.

New York U.S. Senate Delegation splits on Iran Nuclear Plan

The New York Times and Medium reported a split decision in the New York Senate delegation over the mid-September vote on the Iran nuclear pact.  Senator Charles Schumer came out in opposition; Senator Gillibrand came out in favor, despite some misgivings.  Looks like President Obama might have a problem gathering votes among the remaining undecided Democrat Senators.  The Times reported:

Senator Chuck Schumer, the most influential Jewish voice in Congress, said Thursday night that he would oppose President Obama’s deal to limit Iran’s nuclear program.

“Advocates on both sides have strong cases for their point of view that cannot simply be dismissed,” Mr. Schumer, Democrat of New York, said in a lengthy statement. “This has made evaluating the agreement a difficult and deliberate endeavor, and after deep study, careful thought and considerable soul-searching, I have decided I must oppose the agreement and will vote yes on a motion of disapproval.”

Mr. Schumer had spent the last several weeks carrying a dog-eared copy of the agreement in his briefcase and meeting with Mr. Obama and officials like Wendy R. Sherman, the deal’s chief negotiator. With his decision, he paves the way for other Democrats on the fence to join Republicans in showing their disapproval.

“There are some who believe that I can force my colleagues to vote my way,” Mr. Schumer said. “While I will certainly share my view and try to persuade them that the vote to disapprove is the right one, in my experience with matters of conscience and great consequence like this, each member ultimately comes to their own conclusion.”

New York U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand announced her support for the Iran pact in a Medium report:

I have decided to support this deal after closely reading the agreement, participating in multiple classified briefings, questioning Energy Secretary Moniz and other officials, consulting independent arms control experts, and talking with many constituents who both support and oppose this deal. Here is why I believe this imperfect deal is worthy of Congressional approval:

  • First, Iran made essential concessions in the deal. After the failure of the 2004 Paris Agreement, Iran was defiant; it refused to negotiate seriously, it was uncooperative with international weapons inspectors, and it vowed never to cave to pressure and dismantle its nuclear production, which increased dramatically during the Bush years. Now, Iran has signed on to a sufficiently verifiable and enforceable deal that cuts off all paths to a bomb and has its entire nuclear supply chain closely monitored for years to come. A deal like this, widely supported by independent nuclear arms control experts, was unimaginable just a few years ago.
  • Second, this deal will provide international nuclear inspectors with access that they otherwise would not have had — and never will have if we reject this agreement. We will begin robust worldwide monitoring of Iran’s nuclear supply chain — uranium production, plants that convert uranium into a centrifuge-ready gas, centrifuges, uranium stockpiles, and spent nuclear fuel that contains plutonium — and inspectors will retain the right to request access to suspicious sites forever.
  • Third, while I’m skeptical that Iran won’t try to deceive us and our partners in this agreement, we’ll be in a better position to catch those attempts due to the monitoring and verification mechanisms that this deal secures. If Iran pursues a nuclear weapon, international inspectors and intelligence operations will know faster than ever before. We will then be able to snap back all of the American and United Nations sanctions, even unilaterally, and all options — including military action — will be on the table.

[…]

There are legitimate and serious concerns about this deal. For example, I would have liked to see a period shorter than 24 days to resolve disputes over access for inspectors. The U.N. embargoes on the sales of arms and ballistic weapons to Iran should have remained in place permanently, instead of lapsing after five and eight years. Hostages remain in Iranian custody. We will have to work hard to fight Iran’s malign efforts to wreak havoc in the region. While all of these issues are important, no issue matters more than ensuring that the Iranian regime does not have a nuclear weapon at its disposal.

So while upstate New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand chose to support the President’s Iran nuclear deal downstate Senate colleague and future Senate Democrat leader Chuck Schumer elected to oppose President Obama announcing he would vote to reject the Iran nuclear pact.

At the Times Square Rally on July 22nd you may recall there were shouts of “where was Chuck?” Looks like he succumbed to the thousands of calls from constituents, major donors and possibly the tawdry hearing record of facts piling up in Congressional testimony about how bad the deal was hailed by the President and Secretary Kerry.

The importance of Schumer’s decision will not be lost on the White House. Let’s see if this translates into a potential no vote by many of the remaining undecided Democrats in the Senate.

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

Remembering the Shoot Down of Navy SEAL Helicopter ‘Extortion 17’ on August 6, 2011

AUGUST 6, 2015 – Today, on the fourth anniversary of the shoot down of NAVY SEAL helicopter, call sign – Extortion 17, we re-release this critically important Press Conference that took place on May 9, 2013 in Washington, D.C.

RELATED ARTICLE: Obama administration accused of stonewalling in suit over downing of SEAL Team 6 Extortion 17 chopper

Lest We Forget: Below is a composite of those who died on Extortion 17:

died on extortion 17

Analysis of President Obama’s Partisan American University Speech

Yesterday, President Obama used the venue of American University’s new Center of International Service in our nation’s capital to present a 55 minute partisan speech directed at wavering Democrat Senators and Representatives in Congress. He suggested that the nuclear pact with Iran was better than the alternative, war. He chose the campus located in northwest Washington, because it was there on June 10, 1963, that President Kennedy gave a Commencement address announcing an important Cold War initiative; a joint effort with Chairman Khrushchev of the Soviet Union and Britain’s Harold Macmillan seeking a comprehensive nuclear weapons test ban treaty and unilaterally ending atmospheric testing.

This was the first substantive developments among these antagonists following the October 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, when the world teetered on the brink of a possible nuclear exchange. In his speech, Kennedy asked the graduates to re-examine their attitudes towards peace, the Soviet Union, and the Cold War, famously remarking, “If we cannot end now our differences, at least we can make the world safe for diversity.” Kennedy unlike Obama gave a masterful and succinct presentation in less than 27 minutes to get his points across. Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu took 24 minutes to outline his opposition to the Iran nuclear deal, inclusive of his response to questions from  a large U.S. and Canadian audience via webcast.

Watch President Kennedy’s 1963 American University Commencement address:

The Wall Street Journal noted the hortatory and accusatory rhetoric of the President Obama’s remarks:

Congressional rejection of this deal leaves any U.S. administration that is absolutely committed to preventing Iran from getting a nuclear weapon with one option: another war in the Middle East.  So let’s not mince words. The choice we face is ultimately between diplomacy or some form of war.

Following the President’s speech, Senate Foreign Relations Chairman, Bob Corker (R-TN) told reporters:

 The president is trying to turn this into a partisan issue, but there is bipartisan concern.

He went out of his way lambasting the opposing Republican majorities in Congress as the party of war mongers. He tied them to the legacy of the Bush II Wars in Iraq suggesting the outcome was the morphing of Al Qaeda in Iraq into the Islamic State or ISIL. He said the cost was thousands killed, tens of thousands injured at a price of a trillion dollars. To divided American Jews, he told them that he had improved the Jewish nation’s Qualitative Military Edge with commitment of billions in conventional military aid. He implied that support would enable Israel to overcome the Islamic Regime’s existential threats of “Death to America, Death to Israel, Death to Jews,” notwithstanding Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei’s holocaust denial and Antisemitism. Obama criticized Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s opposition to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) for Iran’s nuclear program. He suggested that Netanyahu’s alternative of simply “squeezing” Iran’s theocratic leadership was not a better solution, and might lead to war. Netanyahu argues that the current Iran nuclear deal actually provides multiple pathways for Iran to achieve nuclear breakout leading to possible war.

In a post speech dialogue with Washington pundits, the President deepened his partisan criticism of Republican opponents to the Iran nuclear deal. Gerald Seib, who writes a dailyCapitol Column for The Wall Street Journal reported the President saying:

There is a particular mindset that was on display in the run-up to the Iraq war that continues to this day. Some of the folks that were involved in that decision either don’t remember what they said or are entirely unapologetic about the results. This mindset views the Middle East as a place where force and intimidation will deliver on the security interests that we have, and that it is not possible for us to at least test the possibility of diplomacy. Those views are prominent now in the Republican Party.

Both Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) found that criticism “galling,” as Mr. Obama “presided over the collapse of our hard-won gains in Iraq.”

Watch  the Washington Post video of President Obama’s 2015 American University speech:

While Obama’s speech was being delivered at American University there was a hearing before the Senate Banking Committee, chaired by Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL) focused on sanctions relief under the terms of the Iran nuclear deal. Undersecretary of State Wendy Sherman appeared saying “that I didn’t see the final documents. I saw the provisional documents, as did my experts.” Thus, suggesting that the IAEA side deals were not going to unearth prior military developments at Parchin and other known locations.

An appearance by Director General of the UN IAEA, Ukiya Amano in a separate Capitol Hill briefing Wednesday lent the distinct impression that the UN nuclear watchdog agency was not going to disclose the so-called side agreements with Iran, nor would it have the suggested “robust” verification regime that the President has touted. That gave rise to skepticism by Senate opponents, that no base line would be established for prior military developments at Parchin, an alleged center for nuclear warhead development. The Wall Street Journal reported Mr. Amano saying that IAEA inspectors had been denied access to key scientists and military officials for interviews.   Following his closed door briefing to a bi-partisan group of Senators, Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Corker commented, “I would say most members left with greater concerns about the inspection regime than we came in with.”  Senator John Barroso (R-WY) concluded, “My impression listening to him was the promises the President made were not verifiable.” Democrat supporters of the Iran deal like Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) followed the White House line that “it didn’t matter as we already knew what Iran had developed.”

At yesterday’s Senate Banking, Housing and Community Affairs  hearing, a panel of experts spoke about the lifting of sanctions and if there was a better deal. The panel included former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Crimes, Juan C.  Zarate, Mark Dubowitz executive director of the Washington, DC based Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) and former State Department official Nicholas Burns of Harvard’s Kennedy School. Dubowitz in his testimony suggested that the deal should be amended, eliminating the sunset provisions and the so-called snap back sanctions. As precedent for possible amendment of the JCPOA, he noted more than “250 bi-lateral and multi-lateral agreements and treaties from the Cold War Era.”

Watch this C-span video excerpt of FDD’s Dubowitz’s testimony:

Last night, the PBS News Hour host Gwen Ifill had a segment with Burns and Ray Takeyh a former Obama adviser on Iran during his first term now a Senior Fellow with the Council of Foreign Relations (CFR), Is Obama’s Iran deal rhetoric working?  Burns, who is an adviser to Secretary Kerry, said:

I think, as Americans, we ought to have the self-confidence to try diplomacy first, rather than war. I will say this, Gwen, in answer to your specific question. I think the President ought to have a big tent policy here. To say that if the deal is turned down, if Congress defeats the President and overrides his veto in December, then that leads to war, I think, is a little stark.

Takeyh commented:

Jack Kennedy’s speech was lofty, idealistic. I think, if I quote it right, he said we shouldn’t wave the finger of accusation or issue indictments.

I think the President was unyielding. He was passionate, but his tone was at times truculent. And he didn’t make a successful pitch to his critics. This is a technologically flawed agreement, and the President should have attempted to broaden the parameters of the conversation about this agreement. I think, in that sense, the president missed his mark, and I think it was unwise.

Takeyh, who is also an adviser to FFD’s Iran Project, buttressed Dubowitz’s Senate testimony saying:

The history of arms controls suggest, when there’s Congressional objections, as was the case in SALT-I and SALT-II, and the President mentioned those, there is an attempt to go back and renegotiate aspects of this. And I think that’s what the President should have done when he met the criticism, as opposed to just dismiss it.

There are aspects of this agreement that are very problematic, such as the sunset clause, where, after essentially 10 years, Iran gets to embark on an industrial-sized nuclear program. And when you have an industrial-sized nuclear program, there is no inspection modality that can detect a sneak-out to a weapon option.

The President essentially, even now, after the rejection of the deal, should there be one, has a chance to go back, renegotiate some aspect of the deal, and therefore strengthen it. And as he strengthens that deal, I think he can broaden the bipartisan support for it.

I would be very concerned if I was a supporter of this deal that this deal is based on such a narrow margin of public support on the Hill. I think the longevity of this deal is seriously questioned by its absence of bipartisan support.

When questioned by Burns about reopening negotiations, Takeyh drew attention to other issues in the Iran nuclear pact that could be rectified through amendment:

I think it will be very difficult, but not impossible, because some of these provisions are so glaringly flawed that I think other countries would welcome negotiations.

I mentioned the sunset clause. Iran’s development of IR-8 centrifuges, which essentially produce uranium 17 times faster, and that gives Iran enrichment capacity that is quite substantial — the verification on this deal is extraordinarily imperfect.

The president keeps talking about that this is the most intrusive verification system, and the only other verification system that was more intrusive resulted from the Iraq War and the armistice. That’s just not true.

South Africa, under Nelson Mandela, agreed to anytime/anywhere inspection, which, in practice, you had access to military facilities within one day. So we can go back and renegotiate four, five, six aspects of this agreement. The history of arms controls is replete with such exercises.

And I think if you do that, this agreement would be strengthened. It will be based on a bipartisan anchor; it would ensure its longevity.  It would ensure that proliferation cascade in the Middle East will not take place, and it will ensure that Iran will not sneak out to a bomb.

Watch the PBS News Hour segment with Burns and Takeyh:

Takeyh’s colleague and long term President of the CFR, Dr. Richard N. Haass in testimony on August 4th before the Senate Armed Services Committee suggested:

That any vote by Congress to approve the pact should be linked to legislation or a White House statement that makes clear what the United States would do if there were Iranian non-compliance, what would be intolerable in the way of Iran’s long-term nuclear growth, and what the US was prepared to do to counter Iranian threats to US interests and friends in the region.

With each Senate and House Hearing on the Iran nuclear pact, more is revealed about why this is a bad deal. However, as witnessed by the Congressional testimony of experts like Dubowitz of the FDD, Takeyh and Haass of the CFR, it appears that Obama and Kerry didn’t follow the experience garnered from Cold War era arms control negotiations. Congress should be the veritable “bad cop” to fend off and reign in the concession demands of the Islamic regime’s negotiators in Lausanne and Vienna. We understand that several Republican Senators and House Members are drafting resolutions for rejection of the Iran nuclear pact. Perhaps they might include recommendations for amendment of the JCPOA endeavoring to make it a better deal. However, the President has chosen a partisan path that does not welcome bi-partisan deliberation. Perhaps the option is for the resolutions to reject the pact and schedule a vote as a treaty, assuming the President may have the votes to override a veto. As we have discussed there is also possible litigation that might achieve the same end.

It is going to be a long hot summer recess for Members of Congress in their states and districts holding town hall hearings to gauge the pulse of constituents on the President’s nuclear deal with Iran.

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

Israel in the Eye of the Storm By Tom Wilson

Tom Wilson, Resident Associate Fellow at the Centre for the New Middle East, writing in The Journal for International Security Affairs, outlines the key geopolitical challenges facing Israel.

In a region convulsed by the turmoil of civil wars, revolutions, and insurgencies, Israel stands out as an island of relative stability, one that has successfully weathered the multiple storms of the Islamist winter that abruptly followed the so-called “Arab Spring.” Yet in the summer of 2014, the calm in Israel was shattered by rockets, terrorists emerging from tunnels, and amphibious attacks along the country’s shoreline. The abrupt intrusion of terrorism back into Israeli domestic life—with all of the country’s major cities within reach of missiles fired by the Hamas terrorist group—was reminiscent of the second intifada, when suicide bombers from Hamas and other extremist factions entered Israel’s busy city centers and transformed them into war zones, paralyzing daily life.

During the height of the summer 2014 Gaza War, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu commented that Israel could not afford to give up control of the West Bank and risk the creation of “another 20 Gazas” there.(1) That remark resonated particularly strongly with many Israelis, not least because it came just months after a failed American-led effort to push for a peace agreement with the Palestinians—one that would have obliged Israel pull out of the vast majority of the West Bank. And whereas Netanyahu’s statement about the potential horrors of Palestinian terrorism appears to have been received approvingly by many in Israel, Secretary of State John Kerry’s peace-making efforts enjoyed far less popularity. Indeed, many sections of Israeli society came to resent the Obama administration’s focus on promoting a peace agreement, as did some in Israel’s political establishment.

That they did speaks volumes about just how much Washington’s diplomats, like their counterparts in Europe, have fundamentally failed to appreciate the changes that have taken place in Israel’s calculus of risk over the preceding decade. Furthermore, they have failed to view Israel’s predicament in its full regional context.

Rather, ever since Barack Obama took office, his administration has pressed unrelentingly for reconciliation between the Israelis and Palestinians. It has done so, moreover, as if the parties in question were still operating in the relative stability of the Middle East of the 1990s. Thus, Kerry’s approach is reminiscent of the Clinton administration’s hammering out of the Oslo Accords with Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres, and its subsequent full-court press for a final agreement at Camp David between Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat. But while it is true that the current Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, is a somewhat more preferable negotiating partner to Arafat, the similarities end there; the political landscape for a peace agreement today is more inhospitable than ever before.

This is so for two reasons. The first relates to the changing regional circumstances now confronting Israel. The second is tied to the fundamental transformation that has taken place in Palestinian society and politics.

Region on fire

Half-a-decade into the “Arab Spring,” Israel faces numerous Islamist militant groups on its borders, from Hezbollah in southern Lebanon and Jabhat al-Nusra in Syria to Hamas in Gaza and al-Qaeda and Islamic State-aligned factions in the Sinai. The emergence of each of these groups has transformed Israel’s security outlook and diminished hopes for securing a durable peace. Rather than an environment ripe for a modus vivendiwith essentially pragmatic neighboring states, Israel now faces jihadist non-state actors, most of which are locked in power struggles with other militants as well as with the nation-states whose territory they now operate from.

The spread of this regional turmoil has had a mixed impact on the Israeli-Palestinian situation. To some extent, the conflicts in Syria, Iraq and Yemen have made the mostly-cold confrontation between Israel and the Palestinians appear far less pressing and far less relevant. Whereas once the words “Middle East conflict” were shorthand for referring to the dispute between Israel and its Arab neighbours, now this expression is more likely to refer to the struggle between Sunni and Shi’a extremists, backed by the Gulf States and Iran, respectively.

It is particularly significant that many of these militant groups are now operating from territories that Israeli security forces have previously withdrawn from (the Sinai, Southern Lebanon, and Gaza) or are directly adjacent to strategically important territories that Israel has previously considered giving up (e.g., the Golan Heights and the Jordan Valley). This naturally has had a considerable impact on Israel’s current willingness to make territorial concessions in return for peace agreements or international good will. From a strategic point of view, such moves have ultimately amounted to creating power vacuums that have eventually been filled by militants, so effectively moving a range of security threats ever closer to Israel’s civilian population centers and core national infrastructure.

Take Hezbollah, Iran’s most significant terrorist proxy. The Shi’ite militia represents one of the most formidable fighting forces in the Middle East, and is one of the greatest security challenges facing the Jewish state. Hezbollah and the Israeli military engaged in a deadly clash in 2006, one in which Israel’s military failed to strike a truly decisive blow against the Shi’a militants. Since then, Hezbollah is understood to have dramatically increased its military capabilities, and even with Israel’s Iron Dome and David’s Sling air defense systems operational, it is likely that Hezbollah could still inflict considerable damage in the event of a future conflict, since most of Israel’s territory is now well within Hezbollah’s reach.

The other major threat to Israel’s north has been the unfolding crisis in Syria. Stray projectiles from the fighting have impacted the Israeli-controlled parts of the Golan on numerous occasions, but it is the advance of Islamist groups close to the Syrian border that has caused the most alarm in Israel. For the moment, militants have been too absorbed with the fighting in Syria to direct their attention toward Israel. Nevertheless, the threat from chemical weapons and other capabilities falling into the hands of such groups must be taken seriously. Given that less than a decade ago, the Israeli government had contemplated a withdrawal from the Golan Heights—a territory that borders the Galilee, one of Israel’s most vital fresh water sources—these developments have done nothing to win public support for the notion of making further territorial concessions for peace. To the contrary, they have demonstrated that while Israel might hand territory into the possession of one regime, there is no guarantee that that territory will remain secure, or that the regime in question will survive long after the signing of any such peace treaty.

That, in part, has been the Israeli experience in the Sinai as well. True, Egypt’s short-lived Muslim Brotherhood government never officially revoked the peace treaty between the two countries, as many feared would happen after the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak in 2011. Yet in Egypt—as in Lebanon and Syria—the threat to Israel has not come from the state itself, but rather from the weakness of those states and the prevalence of terrorist non-state actors moving into the resulting ungoverned and under-governed territory. Today, groups loyal to both al-Qaeda and the Islamic State continue to operate in the Sinai Peninsula. And while Israel has now constructed a security barrier along its Egyptian border, and jihadists there are currently occupied with battling Egypt’s military, the lawless nature of the peninsula represents a major security concern, among other things because of the way in which the Sinai has served as the primary channel through which weapons and weapons-related matériel have reached the Gaza Strip.

The one border from which Israel currently faces the least significant threat is the Jordanian one. Like other monarchies in the region, the Hashemite Kingdom has so far survived the ripple effects of the “Arab Spring” uprisings—but this may not remain the case indefinitely. The growing popularity of Salafism in Jordan(2) may well come to undermine stability in Jordan, creating a scenario that would almost certainly jeopardize Israel’s security. Although it has been the case that some Jordanian Salafists have been drawn away from that country to join the fighting in Syria, it is also true that Jordan’s proximity to both Iraq and Syria places it in a particularly fragile situation. Furthermore, the significant influx of refugees into Jordan from those conflicts may well have brought other extremists into the country. The resulting concerns about Jordan’s long-term future have contributed to Israel’s insistence that the Jordan Valley must remain its most eastern border, or at the very least that the Israeli military must be allowed to maintain a presence there.

The Islamization of Palestinian politics

Ever since the establishment of Hamas (The Islamic Resistance Movement) in 1987 at the outset of the first intifada, Islamist jihadist groups have played an increasingly prominent part in Palestinian political life in general, and in particular as part of the Palestinian clash with Israel. Hamas had, of course, grown out of the Muslim Brotherhood, which was operating in the area even during the days of the British Mandate in Palestine.(3) The group’s founder, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, had led the Muslim Brotherhood in Gaza since 1968, but Islamists had always played a minor role in Palestinian terrorist activities compared to the secular and Marxist guerrilla groups as represented by the PLO.

The past two decades, however, have seen a veritable explosion of Islamist politics in the Palestinian Territories. Drawing from the lessons of Hamas, Palestinian militants began to adopt the tactic of suicide bombing as a preferred method of attack. As they did, other Islamist groups (such as the smaller Palestinian Islamic Jihad) became increasingly prominent across the West Bank and Gaza Strip. And, beginning in the mid-2000s, Salafist- and al-Qaeda-aligned groups began to proliferate in Gaza. Among them were small groups, such as Jaish al-Islam (Army of Islam), Jaish al-Umma (Army of the Nation), and Fatah al-Islam (Islamic Conquest), all of whom began to make their presence felt in the Gaza Strip. (4)

The Islamist politics of the Gaza Strip have been far from harmonious. These factions were always fiercely critical of Hamas’s failure to fully implement Islamic law, in particular following the group’s takeover of the Strip in 2007, and have opposed the temporary cease-fires Hamas has agreed to with Israel from time to time. But while these groups certainly attracted some disaffected Hamas operatives,(5) they did not appear to represent an immediate challenge to Hamas rule—at least for a time. More recently, however, some of these factions have sworn loyalty to the Islamic State, and clashes have broken out between them and Hamas, which has found itself in the position of needing to eliminate more extreme Islamist elements to maintain its hold on power. At the same time, Fatah has been locked in a long-running struggle to prevent a takeover by Hamas Islamists in the West Bank, where it holds sway.

The heavy involvement of Islamists in the terror attacks of the second intifada was certainly an indication that radical Islam was playing an increasingly decisive role in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Nevertheless, few at that time predicted that Hamas would win a decisive victory when elections were held for the Palestinian national assembly in 2006. The group’s subsequent seizure of power in Gaza by force in 2007, and the ousting of Fatah there, further cemented the process of radicalization sweeping Palestinian society.

Indications of what was happening should already have been apparent from the results of two surveys conducted in the mid-2000s. A 2004 survey by the Jordanian Center for Strategic Studies found support for al-Qaeda to be noticeably higher among Palestinians than in neighboring Arab countries, with 70 percent describing al-Qaeda as a resistance movement as opposed to a terrorist organization.(6) Similarly, a 2005 survey by the Norwegian group Fafo found 65 percent of Palestinians questioned supported al-Qaeda attacks against the West, and in Gaza that figure rose to 79 percent.(7) European observers living in Palestinian society at the time noted this trend of popular extremism, with one European diplomat stating that Palestinian society was undergoing “an accelerated process of broad Islamization and radicalization.”(8)

While the Palestinian Authority had itself noted the presence of Salafist evangelist preachers operating in the West Bank,(9) Palestinian sympathies for violent extremism had still tended to be expressed as support for nationalistic Islamist groups such as Hamas and the Islamic Jihad. Indeed, by many estimations Hamas would have a strong chance of winning West Bank elections were they to be held again today. Although certain West Bank cities such as Ramallah, Bethlehem and Jericho have remained quite firmly under the control of Mahmoud Abbas’s Palestinian Authority, there are other localities where Fatah has been severely weakened.

Abbas’s approval rating had clearly plummeted by the time of the summer 2014 war in Gaza. An indication of where the sympathies of West Bank Palestinians lay came shortly before major hostilities erupted. At the time, Israel’s security forces had undertaken a military operation to rescue three Israeli teenagers kidnapped by a Hamas cell based in Hebron in the southern West Bank. During that eleven-day operation, Israeli forces arrested some 350 militants, including almost all of Hamas’s leadership in the West Bank. But while this operation received the backing of the Palestinian Authority and the cooperation of its security forces, widespread anger erupted into several nights of anti-Fatah rioting in Ramallah.

The Gaza conflict in the summer of 2014 appeared to give Hamas a significant boost with the Palestinian public, with many believing that the organization was doing far more than Fatah to lead “resistance” against Israel. Polling shortly after the war revealed that support for Hamas had doubled among West Bank Palestinians, rising from 23 percent in March to 46 percent in September.(10) There are other indications to suggest that the pro-Hamas feelings that arose during last summer’s war have not dissipated. Student elections across West Bank universities in the spring of 2015 witnessed a surge of support for Hamas and the Islamist bloc, with the two being tied at the Palestinian Polytechnic University in Hebron, while the Islamic bloc won outright at Birzeit University.(11)

What Israel is now watching for are signs of whether or not sympathies for the Islamic State and its ideology are increasing among Palestinians. Unlike in Gaza, the security presence of the Israeli military throughout the West Bank will go some way to ensuring that IS militants are unable to establish fully operational cells in the West Bank. Nevertheless, there have been early indications of pockets of support for IS among West Bank Palestinians. Israel’s intelligence services have already warned of a process of militants defecting from existing terror groups, primarily Hamas and Islamic Jihad, and swearing allegiance to IS.

This process may have been underway for some time now. At the time of Hamas’ kidnapping of the three Israeli teenagers in June 2014, a previously unknown group claiming to be aligned with IS attempted to take responsibility for that action. And during the Gaza war that followed, the Islamic State’s media wing, al-Battar, released a series of images depicting the Dome of the Rock and threatening Israel’s Jews that the Islamic State was coming for them, and in August images appeared online showing an individual displaying the group’s flag on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

In Gaza, the process of extremists shifting their allegiances to the Islamic State is far more advanced than in the West Bank. This is partly because in recent years violent Salafist groups have already been able to establish a foothold in Gaza, with some groups such as Suyuf al-Haq (Swords of Righteousness) launching IS-styled attacks against institutions and individuals accused of spreading Western influence. It had also become increasingly apparent that the military wing of The Popular Resistance Committees (Al-Nasser Salah al-Deen Brigades), the third-largest military group in Gaza, was displaying signs of radicalization, placing it further to the extreme than either Hamas or Islamic Jihad. It is out of this milieu that support for the Islamic State appears to have arisen.

Early indications of the growing support for IS in Gaza began to emerge in the fall of 2014. At that time, a group calling itself “ISIS-Gaza Province” began to establish an online presence, with a video appearing on YouTube showing a group of armed militants claiming to be the Islamic State in Gaza, complete with IS flag. Indeed, by late 2014 ISIS flags had become an increasingly common sight in Gaza, with eyewitnesses reporting their appearance everywhere from football stadiums to car windshields to wedding invitations. On November 3rd, the Shura council of Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis in the Sinai, as well as the group’s leader, Abu Khattab, formally pledged loyalty to the Islamic State. This was a telling indication that not only individuals but also entire Salafist factions are defecting to IS—a trend that Israel will need to grapple with in the not-so-distant future.

Mind the gap

As the surrounding Middle East increasingly descends into turmoil, Israel for the most part has managed to maintain relative calm and stability over the territory under its control. This stability is not a naturally occurring state of affairs, but rather the result of the extensive efforts of Israel’s security forces to keep a multitude of surrounding threats at bay. Almost all of these threats stem in one way or another from violent Islamism, which refuses to be appeased by any number of Israeli concessions.

International policymakers, however, do not appear to have adjusted to this new reality. The failing has been particularly noticeable in the policies of the Obama administration, whose representatives still seem to regard the Israeli-Palestinian dispute as one of the most pressing and problematic concerns in the region. In the early 2000s, at the height of the second intifada and prior to the second Gulf War, this may indeed have been true. Today, it is not. Yet American and European leaders continue to push for drastic changes in the current status quo, even at a time when much of the rest of the region is already in a state of extreme and unpredictable flux.

They are bound to be disappointed. Israel will naturally be reluctant to make any significant concessions while the surrounding region remains so unpredictable. It knows that the security and stability it enjoys has been hard fought and remains fragile. Under the present circumstances, a dramatic change in the existing status quo could begin a chain of events that would plunge Israel into one of the deepest security crises of its history, making it once again one of the region’s major flashpoints.

It is a reality that Israeli policymakers—and the Israeli public at large—understand well, even if officials in the West do not.

Tom Wilson is a Middle East analyst and a Resident Associate Fellow at the Henry Jackson Society in London.


1.   “Netanyahu: Gaza Conflict Proves Israel Can’t Relinquish Control of West Bank,” Times of Israel, July 11, 2014, http://www.timesofisrael.com/netanyahu-gaza-conflict-proves-israel-cant-….

2.   See, for example, David Schenker, “Salafi Jihadists on the Rise in Jordan,” Washington Institute for Near East Policy, PolicyWatch no. 2248, May 5, 2014, http://www.washingtoninstitute.org/policy-analysis/view/salafi-jihadists….

3.   Jonathan Schanzer, Hamas vs. Fatah: The Struggle for Palestine (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), 24.

4.   Jonathan Schanzer and Mark Dubowitz, Palestinian Pulse: What Policymakers Can Learn from Palestinian Social Media (Washington, DC: Foundation for Defense of Democracies, 2010), http://www.defenddemocracy.org/content/uploads/documents/Palestinian_Pul….

5.   Yoram Cohen and Matthew Levitt, with Becca Wasser, “Deterred but Determined: Salafi-Jihadi Groups in the Palestinian Arena,” Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Policy Focus no. 99, January 2010, http://www.washingtoninstitute.org/uploads/Documents/pubs/PolicyFocus%20….

6.   “Revisiting the Arab Street: Research from Within,” Center for Strategic Studies, University of Jordan, February 2005, http://www.mafhoum.com/press7/revisit-exec.pdf.

7.   Gro Hasselknippe, “Palestinian Opinions on Peace and Conflict, Internal Affairs and Parliament Elections 2006,” Fafo Paper 2006:09, 2006, http://almashriq.hiof.no/general/300/320/327/fafo/reports/797.pdf

8.   As cited in Cohen and Levitt, “Deterred but Determined.”

9.   Ibid.

10.   “We’re Back; Hamas in the West Bank,” The Economist, September 3, 2014, http://www.economist.com/blogs/pomegranate/2014/09/hamas-west-bank.

11.   Adnan Abu Amer, “Hamas Sweeps Student Council Elections in the West Bank,” Al-
Monitor
, April 28, 2015, http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2015/04/hamas-victory-student-….

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in Journal for International Security Affairs.

Time for all Americans to read ‘The Camp of the Saints’

Invasion of Europe News…..

VDARE has pointed us to this Powerline post by Steven Hayward today entitled ‘Camp of the Saints, Revisited.’  I recommend this now over 40-year-old eerily prescient novel to all of you for your summertime reading ‘pleasure.’  Warning! It is not for the squeamish or faint of heart!

Camp of the Saints

Hayward says what we have been saying and why we post as often as possible on the ‘Invasion of Europe’the American media is not paying attention to the growing migration crisis in Europe.

From Powerline:

If you want to see the immigration crisis getting completely out of control, check out northern France, where several thousand “migrants”—as the press describes them—are trying to charge through the Channel Tunnel to Britain, where, they suppose, the welfare state will take care of them.It hasn’t been receiving much media coverage in the U.S., except for the Wall Street Journal, which notes today that the disruption at the Channel is bad for business.

As the Wall Street Journal quoted one aspiring client a few days ago:

“Here, no one looks after me,” the teenager said. “In the U.K., I can be a big man.”

No one looks after me. The Telos of the welfare state, in five words. More revealing is this passage:

“Stopping them is becoming very difficult since they’re just not afraid of the police anymore,” a French police officer said.

It looks more and more like Jean Raspail’s controversial 1973 novel, The Camp of the Saints, come to life.

Continue reading here.

See our extensive archive on the ‘Invasion of Europe’ by clicking here.

RELATED ARTICLE: Rainbow Nation news from PBS: Black South Africans continue persecution of other black Africans

EDITORS NOTE: Readers may download a free PDF version of Jean Raspail’s 1973 novel The Camp of the Saints here.