Archive for February 3, 2017

Islamophobic French Soldiers Shoot Muslim Terrorist Trying to Behead Them

February 3, 2017

Islamophobic French Soldiers Shoot Muslim Terrorist Trying to Behead Them, Front Page Magazine (The Point), Daniel Greenfield, February 3, 2017

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The non-existent problem of Islamic terror struck again near the Louvre, the famous French museum, as a terrorist of unknown religion and national origin shouting “Allah Akbar” (a phrase in Arabic that means everyone should be nicer to other people and not behead them) and waving a machete was shot by French soldiers occupying the historic Islamic homeland of Paris..

It’s unknown why the soldiers shot him, but some experts are blaming Islamophobia. Others complain that the soldiers used excessive force, first attempting to fight him off to prevent him from beheading them, before taking the extreme disproportionate approach of shooting him. Sadly, gun control once again failed to accomplish its stated purpose of allowing murderers to kill without any interference. 

The assailant, who has been hospitalized, has already complained that his nurses are female, alive and aren’t wearing hijabs. The European Court has promised to take up his case.

While it’s unknown why the man was carrying two machetes around, it’s possible that he wanted to present them as a gift to the soldiers in the traditional fashion by slashing at their heads with it, and they, misunderstanding his intentions due to their prejudices, shot him instead.

Either way it’s a tragedy and we should not jump to any conclusions, but we should welcome more refugees, as long as they’re Muslim, because we don’t want any religious tests, except for non-Muslims.

What we really should take away from this is that it has nothing to do with Islam, but possibly with Islamophobia, and we will shortly be interviewing a number of moderate Muslim Brotherhood spokesmen, most of whom aren’t carrying machetes, but who are very concerned about the Islamophobic backlash and the ability of French soldiers to shoot back.

Trump: New Iran sanctions, USS Cole to Red Sea

February 3, 2017

Trump: New Iran sanctions, USS Cole to Red Sea, DEBKAfile, February 3, 2017

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Friday, the US President laid down his markers for the US-Iranian contest which has begun to unfold, and is not ruling out its further escalation into full military confrontations, which may involve America’s allies, including Saudi Arabia and Israel.

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Donald Trump ended his second week as president Friday, Feb. 3, by demonstrating his resolve to cut Iran down to size. This is his main preoccupation in the Middle East to the exclusion of all other Middle East issues.

After Trump personally warned the Islamic Republic that it was “playing with fire,” the US Treasury released a fresh round of anti-Iran sanctions, targeting 13 individuals and 12 entities, some based in the UAE, Lebanon and China. In the next hours, the USS Cole destroyer was posted to the Red Sea’s Bab al Mandeb Straits, after Iran-backed Yemeni Houthi rebels began planting mines in the strategic waterway and oil route chokepoint.

This was seen in Washington as a fresh Iranian provocation for escalating tensions, six days after a Houthi suicide attack in fast boats on a Saudi frigate on patrol in the Red Sea, and attacks on US vessels in October.

National security adviser Michael Flynn’s statement Wednesday putting Iran “on notice” for last week’s ballistic missile test, drew a snooty response Thursday night, from a top adviser to supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that Iran will not yield to “useless” US threats from “an inexperienced person.”

Trump had evidently decided that Tehran’s scornful provocations deserved a fitting response.

He also pushed to the side all other Middle East questions.

Israel got a light tap on the wrist from another White House statement Friday, that its “new or expanded settlements in the West Bank may not be helpful in achieving Middle East peace,” although the US “has no official position on settlement activity.”

Jerusalem was given to understand that the Trump administration was too busy turning the screws on Iran to deal with “Middle East peace” and develop a settlement policy.

In this sense, Donald Trump is taking the opposite line to Barack Obama, his Secretary of State John Kerry and European powers today, who judge Jewish West Bank settlements to be the root cause – not just of the Israeli-Palestinian dispute, but of most other Middle East woes.

The US president also made little time for the visiting King Abdullah of Jordan, who, after moving heaven and earth to be received in the Oval Office, had to be satisfied with breakfast with Trump in Washington – even though Jordan is a vital element in the US-Russian safe zones plan for Syria and moreover host to a US Central Command war room for Syria.

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DEBKAfile’s sources in Washington report: After dodging the settlement issue, Trump was just as anxious to avoid being cornered on Jerusalem by the Jordanian monarch, which he would not have escaped had he received the king officially at the White House.

This does not mean that the new US president intends to line up with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu or Education Minister Naftali Bennett on the settlement or any other issue. If he acts in character, Trump will not be sidetracked from his main objectives by actions which he views as irrelevant. He has said in the past that he would try his hand at Middle East peacemaking.

But for now, he is fully focused on getting Iran and its proxies, especially Hizballah, out of Syria. This goal is so challenging that he can’t hope to achieve it without Russia’s military assistance. Trump is willing to pay a high price for this help, including letting Vladimir Putin push his way into one corner after another n the Middle East, or standing aside for a partial reconciliation between Egypt and the Palestinian Hamas terrorists.

Last week, Ayatollah Khameinei still believed that by letting the Revolutionary Guards of the leash for provocative actions, he could push Trump back – hence the missile test, the Houthi suicide boats, and the advances made by pro-Iranian Shiite militias on the Mosul front in Iraq.

But Friday, the US President laid down his markers for the US-Iranian contest which has begun to unfold, and is not ruling out its further escalation into full military confrontations, which may involve America’s allies, including Saudi Arabia and Israel.

This contingency came up in the long conversation Trump held with Saudi King Salman on Jan. 29 and is widely covered in the Israeli prime minister’s almost daily discussions with members of his administration. Early Friday, Netanyahu talked on the phone to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

They all appreciate that Tehran or its Middle East proxies, such as the Lebanese Hizballah, may well hit back at the Trump administration in Syria or by limited military strikes against Riyadh and Tel Aviv.

These eventualities top Washington’s agenda for now and will dominate Middle East affairs in the near future.

Robert Reich is on the Case

February 3, 2017

Robert Reich is on the Case, Power LineScott Johnson, February 3, 2017

(“It was a vast right wing conspiracy.” I think I may have heard that song before.– DM)

At Mediaite, Alex Griswold reports that former Clinton Secretary of Labor Robert Reich is on the case of the Berkeley riots that prevented Milo Yiannopoulos from speaking on campus this past Wednesday evening. Reich actually holds down an honored position at Berkeley as Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy. He was an eyewitness in part to the events. His pronouncements on campus events therefore carry some weight.

Reich asserted on CNN that he has “heard rumors.” According to the rumors Reich heard on campus, the anti-Trump riots were actually a right-wing plot to discredit Berkeley or the left.

The friendly Don Lemon fleshed out Reich’s train of thought, such as it was, to ask somewhat incredulously: “You think this was a strategy by Yiannopoulos or right wingers? That they put this on in an effort to show there’s no free speech on a college campus like UC Berkeley?”

Reich responded: “I wouldn’t bet against it, Don. Again, I saw these people. They all looked very–almost paramilitary. They were not from the campus. I’ve heard, I don’t want to say factually, that there was some relationship there between these people and the right wing and the right wing movement that is affiliated with Breitbart News.”

Our friend Ed Morrissey is on the case too, but Ed is dialed in to the reality principle. Ed comments on Reich here.

Reich leads a sheltered life. He apparently missed the wave of left-wing violence to which we have been treated in the age of Obama. He apparently missed the violence sponsored by the left during the inauguration of President Trump. Reich might want to take in the new Frontpage pamphlet by John Perazzo on Left Wing Hate Groups.

Putting Iran on Notice

February 3, 2017

Putting Iran on Notice, Front Page MagazineKenneth R. Timmerman, February 3, 2017

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What will the new Sheriff do? It’s easy to imagine Tehran’s leaders with their turbans in a twist, trying to read between General Flynn’s lines.

Strategic uncertainty, as long as it is followed up at some point with concrete action, is a huge advance in our policy toward the Islamo-fascist regime in Tehran. Keeping the Iranians guessing exactly what we will do, and how hard, potentially could even deter them from taking some aggressive actions.

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The announcement from National Security Advisor Lieutenant General Michael Flynn on Wednesday that the Trump administration was “putting Iran on notice” after its latest ballistic missile test is bad news for the ruling clerical elite and its Revolutionary Guards, and potentially good news for Iranians who love freedom.

Pundits in the United States and Europe bemoaned a lack of specificity, although one snarky establishment commentator noted, it sounded like Flynn was saying, “do that again, and we’ll pop you.”

The Iranians responded with predictable chest-thumping. “Iran is the strongest power in the region and has a lot of political, economic and military power,” said former foreign minister Ali Akbar Velayati, now a top advisor to absolute ruler Ayatollah Khamenei.

He and other Iranian leaders warned that Iran would act in “self-defense” if the United States struck first, a scarcely-veiled threat to attack U.S. assets, U.S. friends and allies in the region, and possibly to carry out terrorist attacks on U.S. soil.

So what exactly did Flynn mean?

First, the obvious: there is a new Sheriff in town. Donald Trump is not Barack Obama. Nor is he George W. Bush, or Bill Clinton, or any of his predecessors who for the past 38-years have pretty much given the Islamic regime in Tehran a pass whenever it has attacked Americans.

What will the new Sheriff do? It’s easy to imagine Tehran’s leaders with their turbans in a twist, trying to read between General Flynn’s lines.

Did he mean the United States will blow Iranian patrol boats out of the water the next time they try to “swarm” a U.S. navy vessel in the Persian Gulf? The Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) has been practicing such tactics for years, breaking off just hundreds of meters short of collision.

Those swarming attacks are a serious threat, since our naval gunners cannot know which of a dozen small boats may be intending to break off from the swarm in a suicide attack against our ship.

Or did he mean that the U.S. will respond if Iran test-fires another long-range ballistic missile? How so? Militarily? With new sanctions? Or with some form of technical sabotage such as Stuxnet?

That’s just it: they can’t know.

Perhaps General Flynn was referring to the “emergency” United Nations Security Council meeting on Tuesday, convened by the United States? But that’s where both Russia and France came to Iran’s aid, praising the nuclear deal and calling on the United States to maintain it.

Perhaps General Flynn was responding to the failure of the United Nations to respond, meaning that the U.S. is planning unilateral measures?

Oh, my: in Tehran, they just can’t know.

Strategic uncertainty, as long as it is followed up at some point with concrete action, is a huge advance in our policy toward the Islamo-fascist regime in Tehran. Keeping the Iranians guessing exactly what we will do, and how hard, potentially could even deter them from taking some aggressive actions.

A new, more muscular policy toward the Islamic state in Iran will have many moving parts. But first and foremost, it will identify the regime as an enemy of the United States of America. Because that is how they have behaved since their inception thirty-eight years ago next week.

America has never used the powerful tools at our disposal to punish – or heaven forbid, actually undermine – the Iranian regime. Here are just a few of the options that should be on the table:

• The U.S. could intensify Persian-language broadcasting from the Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, providing Iranians deprived of a free press with accurate information about the United States and about their own country. This will require major reforms at both services spearheaded by a dynamic new CEO at the Broadcasting Board of Governors.

• The U.S. could use the levers of power diplomacy to shun Iran at international organizations such as the United Nations Human Rights Council and UNESCO, and to prevent Iranian diplomats from international travel.

• The U.S. could use our permanent delegation to the IAEA in Vienna, Austria, to intensify intelligence sharing with UN inspectors to ensure they conduct rigorous inspections of Iran’s nuclear installations.

• The U.S. could take steps to curtail Iranian expansionism into Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Lebanon.

• The U.S. could actually punish the Iranian regime for its acts of international terrorism, including the 1983 Beirut bombings of our embassy and the U.S. Marine barracks, the 1996 attack on the Khobar Towers, the 1998 attacks on U.S. embassies in Africa, the 2000 attack on the U.S.S. Cole, the September 11, 2001 attacks, the ongoing supply of Explosively Formed Projectiles (EFPs) to militias in Iraq that have taken the lives of an estimated 1,500 U.S. servicemen, the bounty offered by the IRGC to Taliban terrorists for every American they kill, and the September 11, 2012 attacks in Benghazi.

Many of these attacks were carried out in conjunction with al Qaeda or al Qaeda affiliates, a relationship long pooh-poohed by the U.S. intelligence community but which in recent years has been well-documented.

Punishment could include identifying as war criminals the Iranian regime officials responsible for these acts, indicting them, and issuing Interpol Red Notices on them to prevent them from international travel. It could also include Treasury and intelligence community efforts to identify, block, and seize their overseas assets.

Finally, and most important of all, the U.S. could provide support for opponents of the Iranian regime to include open support for human rights and freedom advocates similar to what President Reagan did for Soviet refusniks, and covert support for active opposition groups inside Iran.

What will President Trump choose from this menu – and from the many other policy proposals that undoubtedly are being floated by his advisors?

Oh, my: in Tehran, they don’t know.

If it were my decision, I would say: let’s keep them guessing until the policies are ready for prime time. Then let’s roll them out and watch the Islamic State of Iran’s leaders squirm.

Trump slaps sanctions on Iran over missile test

February 3, 2017

Trump slaps sanctions on Iran over missile test, Washington Times, Dave Boyer, February 3, 2017

rockettheboatIn this Dec. 29, 2016, photo, released by the semi-official Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA), a long-range S-200 missile is fired in a military drill in the port city of Bushehr, on the northern coast of Persian Gulf, Iran.

The Trump administration hit Iran with new sanctions Friday, one day after President Trump said he had put Tehran “on notice” for testing a missile.

The Treasury Department announced sanctions against 13 individuals and 12 entities.

Speaker Paul D. Ryan said the “swift and decisive response proves that our new administration is serious about holding the Iranian regime accountable for its illicit behavior.”

Iran’s latest ballistic missile test was a flagrant violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions,” the Wisconsin Republican said. “I applaud President Trump for imposing new sanctions to crack down on Tehran’s dangerous ballistic missile program and support for terrorism across the globe.”

House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce, California Republican, said Iran’s action poses “a direct threat to the United States and our allies.”

“I’m glad the administration is taking long-overdue steps to hold the regime accountable,” Mr. Royce said. “I look forward to working with the administration to build on these designations, push back against Iran’s destructive policies, and promote stability in the Middle East.”

Some of those on the sanctions list are based in the United Arab Emirates, Lebanon and China. The penalties were imposed under existing authority that had been issued by then-President Barack Obama. A bipartisan group of senators had urged Mr. Trump in a letter Thursday to take action against Iran.

“Iranian leaders must feel sufficient pressure to cease deeply destabilizing activities, from sponsoring terrorist groups to continued testing of ballistic missiles,” the lawmakers wrote. “Full enforcement of existing sanctions and the imposition of additional sanctions on Iran for its ballistic missile program are necessary.”

Iran tested a missile Sunday. On Wednesday, White House national security adviser Mike Flynn said the Trump administration was putting Iran “on notice,” calling the missile test “provocative.”

The missile launch was followed by Iran-backed Houthi militants’ deadly attack this week on a Saudi naval vessel in the Red Sea.

Mr. Trump told reporters Thursday that he wasn’t ruling out the prospect of military action against Tehran.

“Nothing’s off the table,” the president said.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said on Twitter that the Iranian government was “unmoved” by Mr. Trump’s warnings.

“We’ll never initiate war,” Mr. Zarif said. “We will never use our weapons against anyone, except in self-defense. Let us see if any of those who complain can make the same statement.”

Ali Akbar Velayati, a top aide to Iran leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said Thursday that Iran will continue to test ballistic missiles and “not ask any country for permission in defending itself.”

“This is not the first time that an inexperienced person has threatened Iran,” he said. “Iran is the strongest power in the region and has a lot of political, economic and military power. America should be careful about making empty threats to Iran.”

Mr. Trump said Friday that Iran is “playing with fire.”

“They don’t appreciate how ‘kind’ President Obama was to them,” he said on Twitter. “Not me!”

Mr. Obama signed an agreement with other world powers in 2015 to lift economic sanctions against Iran in exchange for limits on Tehran’s nuclear program and regular international inspections.

Mr. Trump has called it a bad deal and says he wants to renegotiate parts of it.

Al Qaeda Chief: Use of Female Guard Denies Him Justice, Violates Muslim Rights

February 3, 2017

Al Qaeda Chief: Use of Female Guard Denies Him Justice, Violates Muslim Rights, Judicial Watch, February 2, 2017

An Al Qaeda leader and close associate of 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM) accused the U.S. government of denying him justice because a female guard escorted him to a recent court hearing in violation of his Islamic religious beliefs. His name is Abd al Hadi al Iraqi, one of 17 high-value prisoners at the U.S. military compound in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and he’s being tried for running Al Qaeda’s army in Afghanistan, ordering attacks against American and coalition forces and civilians.

Judicial Watch was present at Hadi’s proceedings and has covered almost all the Military Commission hearings since KSM’s arraignment in 2008. The Department of Defense (DOD) approved Judicial Watch to monitor the terrorist trials as a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) and Judicial Watch attorneys, investigators and reporters have witnessed a deep commitment to justice by military and civilian lawyers involved in the proceedings. Trials and hearings are held in a specially constructed, top security courtroom at the Naval Station in southeastern Cuba. Judicial Watch has also covered every proceeding conducted by President Obama’s special Guantanamo Periodic Review Board (PRB) via live broadcasts at the Pentagon. Comprised of senior officials from the departments of Defense, Homeland Security, Justice and State, the board reviews whether continued detention of certain individuals remains necessary to protect against significant threat to the security of the United States.

The charges against Hadi, an Iraqi national in his 50s, extend more than ten pages and outline his relationship with Osama bin Laden and plans to execute Al Qaeda’s objectives of “killing Americans and other civilians.” He is also charged with killing a U.S. solider, injuring and killing numerous German soldiers and planning a number of other attacks. In 2002, Hadi and KSM plotted to assassinate Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf, according to his DOD charging document. At the same time, KSM gave Hadi $100,000 for Al Qaeda operations and Hadi ordered numerous attacks against coalition forces in Afghanistan as well as civilians working for the United Nations. Hadi was captured in Gaziantep, Turkey while traveling from Afghanistan to Iraq in October 2006, the military file states.

During a recent arraignment in Gitmo, Hadi refused to be transferred to the courtroom by a group of guards that included a female because being touched by a strange woman violates his religious beliefs. His attorneys asked the military judge to replace the female guard with a man, but the judge refused. No criminal justice system in the world allows the defendant to decide the rules of the court. Furthermore, sidelining a woman at the request of the defendant goes against any moves the military has made to treat men and women equally. Hadi was eventually brought into the courtroom against his will, shackled into a wheelchair with straps that resembled a seatbelt on an airplane. He waved his arms, requesting permission to address the court and the military judge allowed it. Hadi rambled on about his religious rights and said that when a female guard tries to escort him he will not be able to meet with his lawyers and won’t come to court. “So I don’t know how we can achieve justice here,” he told the judge. A Middle Eastern news report on Hadi’s arraignment points out that the Islamic State is notorious for raping helpless Kurdish women and no extremist organization, including Al Qaeda, complains that it violates Islamic rules.

In 2015 Hadi’s attorneys filed a request for religious accommodation with the Office of Military Commissions in an effort to dictate the compound’s guard schedule. The document says Hadi is a “devout Muslim” and it’s a violation of his Islamic faith to have physical contact with females that aren’t his wife or close relatives. “Islam is two things—worship and rules,” the document states. “Both come from God as revealed to the Prophet.” The document proceeds to reveal that Hadi has been forcibly extracted three times because of his religious beliefs and that he will continue to resist when a female guard is assigned to him. “If female guards must have physical contact with me to bring me to meetings with my attorneys or to court, my faith requires me to refuse those movements, and I will continue to refuse them…”

Terror at the Louvre: Knife-wielding attacker shouts ‘Allahu Akbar’

February 3, 2017

Source: Terror at the Louvre: Knife-wielding attacker shouts ‘Allahu Akbar’ – TheBlaze

Terror at the Louvre: Knife-wielding attacker shouts ‘Allahu Akbar’

Police officers cordon off the area near the Louvre museum near where a soldier opened fire after he was attacked in Paris, Friday, Feb. 3, 2017. Police say the soldier opened fire outside the Louvre Museum after he was attacked by someone, and the area is being evacuated. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

A man with a machete attacked French soldiers Friday morning while they were on patrol outside the famous Louvre museum in Paris. According to eyewitness reports, the man shouted “Allahu Akbar.” French Prime Minister François Hollande has called the act “terrorist in nature.”

The suspect reportedly attacked the soldiers at an entrance to the shopping mall connected to the museum, and the soldiers first tried to subdue him using non-lethal force before opening fire. The suspect was shot in the abdomen and is seriously injured, according to BBC. CBS news also confirmed that the attacker was heard to shout “Allahu Akbar” during his attack.

French authorities said the suspect was carrying two backpacks and two machetes, and began his attack after the soldiers told him he couldn’t carry his backpacks into the shopping mall. “That’s when he got the knife out and that’s when he tried to stab the soldier,” said Yves Lefebvre, a French police official.

The Louvre was on lockdown as four soldiers tried to fight off the suspect before firing five shots at the assailant. One soldier sustained a slight head injury but is expected to recover. The suspect was taken to the hospital after being shot in the stomach, but Police Chief Michael Cadot told reporters he was still conscious and moving. He also said another person who was “acting suspiciously” was arrested at the time but did not appear to be involved.

Interior Ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet told reporters that about 1,000 people were inside the Lourve museum at the time and were safe in lockdown until the all-clear was given and they were evacuated in an orderly fashion after security checks.

Authorities searched the backpacks but no explosives were found.

The suspect is said to be in his mid-30s and did not have any identity papers. The attack at the Louvre is the latest in a string of attacks in Europe in which the assailants have used machetes, buses, or other non-firearm weapons for sometimes deadly attacks.