Archive for the ‘Ideology’ category

Our World: Soros’s campaign of global chaos

August 23, 2016

Our World: Soros’s campaign of global chaos, Jerusalem PostCaroline B. Glick, August 22, 2016

soros

The DCLeaks exposed the immensity of the Soros-funded Left’s campaign against the foundations of liberal democracies. The “direct democracy” movements that Soros support are nothing less than calls for mob rule.

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Major media outlets in the US have ignored the leak of thousands of emails from billionaire George Soros’s Open Society Foundation by the activist hacker group DCLeaks. The OSF is the vehicle through which Soros has funneled billions of dollars over the past two decades to non-profit organizations in the US and throughout the world.

According to the documents, Soros has given more than $30 million to groups working for Hillary Clinton’s election in November, making him her largest single donor. So it is likely the case that the media’s support for Clinton has played some role in the mainstream media’s bid to bury the story.

It is also likely however, that at least some news editors failed to understand why the leaked documents were worth covering. Most of the information was already public knowledge. Soros’s massive funding of far-left groups in the US and throughout the world has been documented for more than a decade.

But failing to see the significance of the wider story because many of the details were already known is a case of missing the forest for the trees. The DCLeaks document dump is a major story because it exposes the forest of Soros’s funding networks.

The first thing that we see is the megalomaniacal nature of Soros’s philanthropic project. No corner of the globe is unaffected by his efforts. No policy area is left untouched.

On the surface, the vast number of groups and people he supports seem unrelated. After all, what does climate change have to do with illegal African immigration to Israel? What does Occupy Wall Street have to do with Greek immigration policies? But the fact is that Soros-backed projects share basic common attributes.

They all work to weaken the ability of national and local authorities in Western democracies to uphold the laws and values of their nations and communities.

They all work to hinder free markets, whether those markets are financial, ideological, political or scientific. They do so in the name of democracy, human rights, economic, racial and sexual justice and other lofty terms.

In other words, their goal is to subvert Western democracies and make it impossible for governments to maintain order or for societies to retain their unique identities and values.

Black Lives Matter, which has received $650,000 from Soros-controlled groups over the past year, is a classic example of these efforts. Until recently, the police were universally admired in the US as the domestic equivalent of the military. BLM emerged as a social force bent on politicizing support for police.

Its central contention is that in the US, police are not a force for good, enabling society to function by maintaining law and order. Rather, police are a tool of white repression of blacks.

Law enforcement in predominantly African American communities is under assault as inherently racist.

BLM agitation, which has been accused of inspiring the murders of police in several US cities, has brought about two responses from rank and file police. First, they have been demoralized, as they find themselves criminalized for trying to keep their cities safe from criminals.

Second, their willingness to use force in situations that demand the use of force has diminished. Fear of criminal charges on the one hand, and public condemnation as “racists” on the other causes police to prefer inaction even when situations require that they act.

The demoralization and intimidation of police is very likely to cause a steep increase in violent crimes.

Then there are Soros’s actions on behalf of illegal immigration. From the US to Europe to Israel, Soros has implemented a worldwide push to use immigration to undermine the national identity and demographic composition of Western democracies. The leaked emails show that his groups have interfered in European elections to get politicians elected who support open border policies for immigrants from the Arab world and to financially and otherwise support journalists who report sympathetically on immigrants.

Soros’s groups are on the ground enabling illegal immigrants to enter the US and Europe. They have sought to influence US Supreme Court rulings on illegal immigration from Mexico. They have worked with Muslim and other groups to demonize Americans and Europeans who oppose open borders.

In Israel as well, Soros opposes government efforts to end the flow of illegal immigration from Africa through the border with Egypt.

The notion at the heart of the push for the legalization of unfettered immigration is that states should not be able to protect their national identities.

If it is racist for Greeks to protect their national identity by seeking to block the entrance of millions of Syrians to their territory, then it is racist for Greece – or France, Germany, Hungary, Sweden the US or Poland – to exist.

Parallel to these efforts are others geared toward rejecting the right of Western democracies to uphold long-held social norms. Soros-supported groups, for instance, stand behind the push not only for gay marriage but for unisex public bathrooms.

They support not only the right of women to serve in combat units, but efforts to force soldiers to live in unisex barracks. In other words, they support efforts aimed at denying citizens of Western democracies the right to maintain any distance between themselves and Soros’s rejection of their most intimate values – their sexual privacy and identity.

As far as Israel is concerned, Soros-backed groups work to delegitimize every aspect of Israeli society as racist and illegitimate. The Palestinians are focal point of his attacks. He uses them to claim that Israel is a racist state. Soros funds moderate leftist groups, radical leftist groups, Israeli Arab groups and Palestinian groups. In various, complementary ways, these groups tell their target audiences that Israel has no right to defend itself or enforce its laws toward its non-Jewish citizens.

In the US, Soros backed groups from BLM to J Street work to make it socially and politically acceptable to oppose Israel.

The thrust of Soros’s efforts from Ferguson to Berlin to Jerusalem is to induce mayhem and chaos as local authorities, paralyzed by his supported groups, are unable to secure their societies or even argue coherently that they deserve security.

In many ways, Donald Trump’s campaign is a direct response not to Clinton, but to Soros himself.

By calling for the erection of a border wall, supporting Britain’s exit from the EU, supporting Israel, supporting a temporary ban on Muslim immigration and supporting the police against BLM, Trump acts as a direct foil to Soros’s multi-billion dollar efforts.

The DCLeaks exposed the immensity of the Soros-funded Left’s campaign against the foundations of liberal democracies. The “direct democracy” movements that Soros support are nothing less than calls for mob rule.

The peoples of the West need to recognize the common foundations of all Soros’s actions. They need to realize as well that the only response to these premeditated campaigns of subversion is for the people of the West to stand up for their national rights and their individual right to security. They must stand with the national institutions that guarantee that security, in accordance with the rule of the law, and uphold and defend their national values and traditions.

Trumpism in International Context

August 2, 2016

Trumpism in International Context, Power LineSteven Hayward, August 2, 2016

Manent-copyPierre Manent

Back at the end of June, I shared the insights of French political philosopher Pierre Manent about the significance of Brexit (which he was for). Yesterday, the good folks at First Things posted a translation of a recent interview Manent gave to the Italian newspaper Il Foglio about the lessons of the recent Islamist attack on the French church.

There’s one especially arresting question and answer that sounds like it could apply with equal measure to the United States. As you read this, simply swap out “America” for every mention of “France” or “Europe,” and see if you don’t agree:

Il Foglio: France looks exhausted. … What are France’s mistakes, especially those of the elite media and intellectuals, and what is the nature of its malaise?

Pierre Manent: The French are exhausted, but they are first of all perplexed, lost. Things were not supposed to happen this way. … We had supposedly entered into the final stage of democracy where human rights would reign, ever more rights ever more rigorously observed. We had left behind the age of nations as well as that of religions, and we would henceforth be free individuals moving frictionless over the surface of the planet. … And now we see that religious affiliations and other collective attachments not only survive but return with a particular intensity. Everyone can see and feel this, but how can it be expressed when the only authorized language is that of individual rights? We have become supremely incapable of seeing what is right before our eyes. Meanwhile the ruling class, which is not a political but an ideological class, one that commands not what must be done but what must be said, goes on indefinitely about “values,” the “values of the republic,” the “values of democracy,” the “values of Europe.” This class has been largely discredited in the eyes of citizens, but it occupies all the positions of institutional responsibility, especially in the media, and nowhere does one find groups or individuals who give the impression of understanding what is happening or of being able to stand up to it. We have no more confidence in those who lead us than in ourselves. It is neither an excuse nor a consolation to say it, but the faults of the French are those of Europeans in general. . .

We invite catastrophe by falling for an ideological representation of the world such as the one that is ours today. We invite catastrophe by sincerely believing that the religious affiliation of a citizen has no political bearing or effect. We invite catastrophe by excluding from authorized debate on Turkey’s possible joining the European Union the fact that Turkey is a massively Muslim country. We invite catastrophe when we confuse the obligation to rescue a person who is drowning with that person’s right to become a citizen of our country. We invite catastrophe when, in the name of charity or mercy, we require old Christian nations to open their borders to all who wish to enter.(Emphasis added.)

Take it away, Donald Trump.

The Failure of the Swedish Establishment

May 6, 2016

The Failure of the Swedish Establishment, Gatestone InstituteNima Gholam Ali Pour, May 6, 2016

♦ In Sweden’s third largest city, Malmö, the children of illegal migrants receive income support payments from the government, and the unemployment rate among foreign-born men aged 18-24 years is at 41%. In Sweden, those who do not have jobs receive generous welfare payments from the local authorities, and families in the country illegally have their rent paid by the taxpayers. It is an open invitation to more migrants to come to Sweden.

♦ The Swedish establishment tells Swedes that the more immigrants come to Sweden, the richer Sweden will become — no matter which country these immigrants come from.

♦ The Swedish establishment is characterized by incompetence combined with an extreme left-wing ideology and a hillbilly-like mentality that refuses to see the rest of the world and the risks involved in it. The Swedish establishment has not dealt with Sweden as if it were a country, but as if it were a village.

♦ By gross miscalculations, the Swedish establishment has eroded its own legitimacy. Today, fewer than one in four Swedes have confidence in their government. Meanwhile, the Swedish media is a major threat to Sweden’s security today: it downplays the migration crisis with ridiculous arguments.

A major threat to Sweden’s security today is the Swedish journalistic establishment: it downplays the migration crisis with ridiculous arguments.

As migrants flooded into Sweden in December 2015, Fredrik Virtanen, a writer for Sweden’s largest newspaper, Aftonbladet, wrote an article entitled, “Have refugees forced you to buy worse red wine?” It is not really dangerous, Virtanen argues, that that Sweden was accepting 160,000 migrants; such migratory movements, he wrote, do not really impact anyone’s life.

Today, however, we know that many people’s lives have been affected by the influx of migrants and that the problems are about more than wine. They are, for example, about sexual assault, the murder of staff in asylum accommodations and chaos in the Swedish school system. But Virtanen was right: red wine is still here.

Another of Aftonbladet’s editorial writers, Linnea Swedenmark, writes about a village in the Swedish province of Jämtland. The village she writes, is an example of how migrants are ensuring that the consumption of goods is increasing in the rural areas of Sweden.

What she did not write is that in Jämtland’s largest city, Östersund, many women have been assaulted by men who speak “Swedish with an accent.” The police have warned women not to go out alone. Swedenmark is right when she writes that “the grocery store sells three times as many eggs” — but the women of Jämtland feel less secure in the public domain.

In the magazine, Café, the journalist Andrev Walden wrote in December 2015, that “no nation has perished from too much goodness.” The pictures for his article compared Sweden’s new restrictive immigration laws with the Holocaust.

When the migration crisis started last year in Sweden, the Swedish comedian Henrik Schyffert calculated and wrote on Facebook that it costs each Swede “two Quattro Stagionis (a popular local pizza), a large Fanta soda and a Netflix subscription to save the lives of 80,000 people this year.”

His Facebook post was praised by all major media outlets in Sweden. They were apparently looking to a comedian who counted the counted the cost of immigration in pizza and soda currencies for the solution to Sweden’s migration crisis.

Since Schyffert made his statement, those amazing pizzas that would finance the mass influx of migrants are nowhere to be found, and Sweden has to borrow more money for the migration crisis on its hands.

These quotes are from the mainstream media in Sweden, and it is how large parts of the Swedish establishment sound every day. This is the level at which the debate on immigration in Sweden is being conducted.

While 800,000 migrants in Libya are waiting to invade Europe, Sweden has a refugee policy whereby only by obtaining livelihoods will those migrants with a refugee status and a temporary residence permit get permanent residence permits. So if you get a job, you get to stay in Sweden permanently. It is a strange refugee policy, because those who actually are refugees and not economic migrants are often traumatized and have difficulties finding a job. So Sweden’s refugee policy is tailored to economic migrants.

In Sweden’s third largest city, Malmö, the children of illegal migrants receive income support payments from the government, and families that are in Sweden illegally have their rent paid by the taxpayers. For some reason, the Swedish authorities want to pay people who should not even be in Sweden. It is an open invitation to more migrants to come to Sweden.

1587Tens of thousands of migrants have passed through Denmark to enter Sweden during 2015 and 2016, attracted by Sweden’s generous welfare payments and free housing.

What the established Swedish media does not tell people about are the threats and risks that come with increased migration. When the European Union’s border agency, Frontex, recognized that it could not control the migrants coming to Europe, and that many Europeans who had joined terrorist organizations outside Europe were coming back to Europe among the migrants, this was not major news in the Swedish media. This is strange, since Sweden is one of the countries in Europe from where many citizens have traveled from to the Middle East to fight in jihadi terrorist organizations.

Such news does not fit in the narrative that the Swedish media is trying to tell the Swedish people. The narrative that the Swedish establishment wants to tell the Swedes is that the more immigrants come to Sweden, the richer Sweden will become. It does not matter which country these immigrants come from. If they just come to Sweden, then Sweden will become a richer country.

A month before the migration crisis started making waves in the media, the think tank Arena Idé — which has close ties to the Social Democrats, the governing party — published a report that was mentioned in all the major Swedish media outlets.

According to the report, Sweden, between 1950 and 2014, had made a “profit” of $110 billion on immigration. The report also said that without immigration, an $8 billion tax increase would be needed to sustain Sweden’s defense, infrastructure and research. That there could be a conflict between a welfare state and immigration was called a “myth.” As expected, the established Swedish media rejoiced over these “facts.”

When the report went public in June 2015, the Swedish media celebrated it. Today, when the Swedish welfare state is under severe pressure because of immigration, the authors refuse to answer any questions about it. Last June, it was treated as a confirmation of the pro-immigration ideology of the Swedish establishment. With 9.5 million people in Sweden and its many universities, only a few economists protested the report. The loudest criticism came from the economist Tino Sanandaji. Needless to say, Sanandaji, despite being an immigrant from Iran with a Ph.D. in public policy from the University of Chicago, was depicted by some in the established Swedish media as a right-wing extremist.

No, Sweden is not the Soviet Union, but the way large parts of the Swedish establishment turn ideology into “facts” through “reports,” and smear those who have different opinions, undermines debates that are of such critical importance in a democracy.

Not only the media and think tanks connected to the government advocate a liberal immigration policy. There is also loud support for it in academic circles. “Immigrants are a profit for Sweden,” Dick Harrison, professor of history at Lund University, wrote in a December 2014 article for the Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet. In the article, he states:

“Sweden is not in any way unique. The same logic — that immigration strengthens the country politically, economically and culturally – can be said of all peacetime immigrations through the ages, whether it has been about refugees or labor immigration. The more immigrants, the stronger [the] state. The prime example is the United States. There is not a single historical example of immigration in the long term being negative for the host country. At this point, our historical experience is crystal clear — the only form of immigration that has been, and is, directly harmful is comprised of warlike invasions.”

While Harrison gives the United States as an example, he forgets to mention that while immigrants to the U.S. often come from countries such as Mexico, China and India, the three countries from which Sweden received the highest number of asylum seekers in 2015 were Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria. They have also delivered most asylum seekers to Sweden during the first four months of 2016. As most people know, these three countries house large numbers of jihadi terrorists.

In Sweden, moreover, it is difficult for people without a high level of education to get a job. In Malmö, the unemployment rate among foreign-born men aged 18-24 years is at 41%. In Sweden, those who do not have jobs receive generous welfare payments from the local authorities.

Sweden also has a welfare system in which municipalities are obligated to ensure that everyone has housing. Sweden’s homeless people live in hostels or hotels paid for by taxpayers. These immigration policies have therefore have therefore saddled Swedish taxpayers with huge expenses.

Without the establishment’s campaign to convince the Swedish people that immigration will make Sweden rich, Sweden would not have the liberal immigration policies they do, eroding the country’s safety and welfare. Even though the Swedish establishment campaigns in every way possible for a liberal immigration policy, and despite the fact that a few months ago anyone advocating for a restrictive immigration policy was called a “racist,” resistance among Swedes against immigration has increased.

The Swedish people have defied their establishment and recently forced liberal politicians to support a more restrictive immigration policy. The Swedish people, despite having an ideologically blind establishment, have been smart enough to use their common sense.

As for the Swedish establishment, there is no word to describe them other than dangerous.

The Swedish establishment is characterized by incompetence combined with an extreme left-wing ideology and a hillbilly-like mentality that refuses to see the rest of the world and the risks involved in it. The Swedish establishment has not dealt with Sweden as if it were a country, but as if it were a village.

What is happening in Sweden right now is a cultural and political revolution. The Swedes have trusted their establishment for a long time. This trust has been a part of the political culture in Sweden. But now that culture is changing — to be anti-establishment in Sweden today is not marginalized anymore. Sweden is developing a powerful anti-establishment movement, dominating the political debate.

By gross miscalculations, the Swedish establishment has eroded its own legitimacy. Today, fewer than one in four Swedes have confidence in their government. The damage that the Swedish establishment’s liberal immigration policies inflicted on Sweden during the migration crisis of 2015 — and is about to inflict during the coming migration crisis of 2016 — is likely to cause a tectonic political shift in Sweden.

The Swedish media has failed in its journalistic obligation to report objectively about the problem, and Swedish politicians have not acted in the best interest of Sweden. While Sweden faces its biggest crisis since World War II, the Swedish establishment has clearly failed to lead.

The average Swede needs to be tougher to cope with the challenges facing Sweden today and in the years to come. The problems that will face Sweden after it has received 160,000 asylum seekers in 2015 and the 150,000 asylum seekers expected in 2016 will create a political, cultural and social environment in which there is no place for political naivety and ideological blindness. To survive as a stable and civilized country where the rule of law and democracy will prevail, Sweden will be forced to recognize the threats and risks that come with massive immigration — and to respond.

‘Islamophobia’ in America vs. murderous Christophobia in the Islamic world

November 5, 2015

‘Islamophobia’ in America vs. murderous Christophobia in the Islamic world, Front Page MagazineJack Kerwick, November 5, 2015

(‘Jewophobia’ appears to be at least as prevalent. — DM)

Cross

As organizations like CAIR and their allies wax indignant over “Islamophobia” in America, Muslims around the globe are visiting the worst sort of cruelty upon the Christian minorities in their midst.

For instance, over a span of four days, from October 19-23, the Indonesian government succumbed to the demand of Islamic “extremists” and demolished nine churches.  Six days earlier, on October 13, Muslims unleashed a torrent of violence that left a church burned to the ground and a person dead.

And in the course of this single day, 8,000 Christians found themselves displaced from their homes.

The government has deported them.

According to a local church activist, someone who self-identified only as “Rudy,” Islamic militants issued an ultimatum to the Indonesian government: Either raze these Christian churches to the ground or “the radicals will deploy around 7,000 people” to besiege this Christian community.

The organization Open Doors, a group dedicated to “serving persecuted Christians worldwide,” reports: “Church members wept as they watched in despair [as] civil police officers [began] hammering down their worship houses.” As of this juncture, over 1,000 “churchless believers are prohibited from raising temporary tents to hold Sunday worship services.”

The predominantly Islamic country of Bangladesh is a place where Christian women are regularly subjected to unspeakable violence.  Open Doors states that “two out of every three women in Bangladesh will experience gender-based violence in their lifetimes.” Furthermore, the United Nations’ “Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women” has found that “girls are regularly harassed and abused on their way to and from school,” a phenomenon that is the function of the fact that “sexual harassment is often seen as ‘part of the culture.’”

One young woman who has fallen victim to this culture is Susmita Chambugonj.  Back in May, the 20-year-old was assailed by five “youths” who dragged her into a microbus.  While inside, Susmita was raped by two of her abductors.

The current “refugee crisis” has hit Syrian and Iraqi Christians particularly hard. Open Doors informs us that Christians in these countries “have had their homes marked by ISIS,” and “some come from historically Christian towns that were obliterated.” Moreover, some Christians are discovering “that they are being discriminated against when it comes to receiving aid.”

In Africa, stories of Islamic-on-Christian oppression are even more grisly.  At the same time, these same stories supply us with proverbial textbook exhibitions of Christian heroism.

Earlier in the year Boko Haram paid Habila Adamu a visit at his home.  When the militants informed Habila that they were “looking for him” in order to end his life, he replied that he had been looking for them as well—but in order to share with them the Gospel of Christ.

The predators weren’t impressed.  When Habila refused to recant his faith, his persecutors shot him in the face and left him for dead.

Thankfully, Habila survived.

Joshua, however, did not.  Joshua was 18 years old.  A member of a family of farmers, he worked in a factory during the dry season.  One day, Islamic militants showed up at his place of employment and proceeded to separate those employees who were Muslims from those that were Christians.  Then, they wasted no time in murdering the Christians one by one.

Initially, Joshua was in another room with some other employees. They watched through a window as the mass murder unfolded.  When an Islamic woman and fellow employee of Joshua begged the latter to deny his Christianity, he refused. Joshua was blunt: “No,” he told her, for “I am a Christian and they are killing my brothers.”

Joshua continued: “I am also going out there. I am not going to stay here and pretend that I am a Muslim.”

Joshua was martyred along with nine young men.

Even as I write this, the Christian community in Turkey has become the object of a systematic, relentless campaign of death threats.  According to Open Doors, the targeted are being blasted for being “heretics” who have “chosen the path that denies Allah[.]”

In Pakistan this past July, Saddique Azam, a veteran school teacher, was promoted to the position of “headmaster” at an elementary school.  Azam is a Christian.  For months, he was repeatedly threatened by Muslims who believed that the office of headmaster should be held by a Muslim.  Azam refused to resign.

Then, on October 6, three of his Islamic colleagues who worked under him physically attacked Azam.

Azam recounted his experience: “Three Muslim teachers entered the school, went into my office and waited for me there.  When I entered the office, I was alarmed to see them.  I asked them the reason for the visit and they launched a tirade of warnings against me to withdraw and resign from teacher headship.”

From the beating, Azam sustained a severe injury to his left eye.  Things could’ve been worst had it not been for other staff that stopped the assault.

But witnesses reported that while they pummeled Azam, his Islamic assailants mocked him by referring to him as “choora,” an anti-Christian epithet used by Pakistani Muslims. “Choora” connotes the “sweeper” or “untouchable” caste.  “You are a ‘Christian Choora,’” his victimizers shouted. How, then, “can you be a headmaster and be given seniority over us?”

The next time that we hear about the “Islamophobia” that Muslims in America allegedly face, let’s recall the face of real religious persecution: the persecution that truly defenseless Christians suffer at the hands of Muslim aggressors throughout the Islamic world.

Madam Hillary is on the right side of herstory

October 25, 2015

Madam Hillary is on the right side of herstory, Dan Miller’s Blog, October 25, 2015

(The views expressed in this article are mine, and do not necessarily reflect those of Warsclerotic or its other editors.– DM)

 

Lies are good and truth is bad because truth would damage Madam Hillary’s and even Imam Obama’s sterling images. Both, bravely and proudly, try to feed us what is “good.” Their people love it, so what difference does it make? 

1025151 (1)

According to John Hinderaker at Power Line, Madam Hillary

lies…it’s not exactly a news flash. On the contrary, based on the liberal media’s reaction to her Benghazi testimony, her willingness to lie, brazenly, is a positive virtue.

There’s always an excuse for having “misspoke.” It need not be a credible excuse, because an incredible excuse works just fine. Anyway, whatever happened was in the past and therefore doesn’t matter now:

What has Imam Obama lied about? Plenty. Here’s an incomplete list: Islam, the nuke “deal” with Iran, Libya, His strength and Putin’s weakness in the Middle East, Israel, Immigration, Crime, Obamacare, race relations and on and on and on. As with Madam Hillary’s spewings, the “legitimate media” generally love it.

Madam Hillary blamed the video repeatedly

According to an article titled “I didn’t blame the video,” Madam Hillary did just that while also managing to lie about substantially more than that.

Hillary simply adores arguing and lawyering.

She lives for it and has at least since she was fired from the House Judiciary Committee during its investigation of the Watergate scandal that eventually brought down President Richard M. Nixon in 1974. Hillary’s then-supervisor, lifelong Democrat Jerry Zeifman, said he canned the 27-year-old attorney “because she was a liar … an unethical, dishonest lawyer. She conspired to violate the Constitution, the rules of the House, the rules of the committee and the rules of confidentiality.” [Emphasis added.]

No lie is too big or too small for Hillary, whether it’s a concocted tale of being under enemy fire at an airport in Bosnia, the existence of a “vast right-wing conspiracy” to undermine her husband’s presidency, that she was named after Mt. Everest climber Sir Edmund Hillary even though he rocketed to fame by accomplishing the feat when she was a six-year-old, or that the Clintons were “dead broke” when they exited the White House.

Meanwhile, at the Thursday hearing, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) demolished Clinton’s apparently fresh assertion at the hearing that she didn’t actually claim an obscure anti-Islam movie trailer posted on YouTube prompted the terrorist assault in Benghazi on the eleventh anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. She now takes a more nuanced, twisted-like-a-pretzel position in which maybe some non-terrorist Muslims were suddenly stirred to violence in Libya by the video, but really at the same time it was a terrorist attack, something she testified Thursday has been her position the whole time. She talked about the video publicly not to point fingers but as a warning, she testified, to those who might attack U.S. interests in the region. In other words, like a good defense lawyer, Hillary was trying to confuse the issues and muddy the waters. [Emphasis added.]

. . . .

While she was informing the American public that the anti-Islam video was what caused the attack, at the same time she emailed her daughter Chelsea and the governments of Libya and Egypt to pin the blame on Muslim militants, Jordan explained. Around the same time the White House, in the closing weeks of a heated presidential election campaign, was pushing the line that what transpired in Benghazi was a spontaneous demonstration turned violent, but terrorism was not a factor.

“We know that the attack in Libya had nothing to do with the film,” Clinton wrote Egypt’s prime minister the night of the attack. “It was a planned attack, not a protest.” But in public Clinton continued to blame the “offensive” video. The U.S. government acquired $80,000 worth of commercial airtime in Pakistan to apologize for the YouTube clip. [Emphasis added]

Jordan pointed out that there was no video-inspired protest over in Benghazi on Sept. 11, 2012, but there was one in Cairo, Egypt. The same day State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said “Benghazi has been attacked by militants. In Cairo, police have removed demonstrators.”

You want to talk about Madam Hillary’s lies? She didn’t lie, of course, but let’s change the subject to something more important. Right now.

hillary-Nixon-copy

 

Conclusions

“Her people” not only don’t care, they are delighted with Madam Hillary’s numerous lies. Again, “what difference does it make?” Plenty.

Please think about Madam Hillary’s and Imam Obama’s impunity — and readiness —  to lie, violate laws and do pretty much whatever they please. We have become a nation without law enforcement where we need it most and very much where enforcement of Obama’s executive decrees harms us greatly (climate change and immigration for example). Do we want a nation the governance of which is increasingly based on, and perpetuated through, lies to “We the people?” Do we want Madam Hillary or another Obama clone as the next Commander in Chief?

Here’s what “Commander in Chief” Obama has done with his our military:

Do you approve of those and the other things He has done to our military? Want more of the same? Or even worse? If not, what can we do about it? Supporting Donald Trump may or may not be what we should do, but I think the songs in the video are superb. Back in September, I wrote an article titled To bring America back we need to break some stuff. We still do, and if someone other than Trump is ready, willing and able he (or, of course, she) should also be considered, very seriously.;

Greasing the wheels of hate

October 25, 2015

Greasing the wheels of hate, Israel Hayom, Gerald M. Steinberg, October 25, 2015

In order to maintain a prolonged terror campaign, it is imperative to cultivate a deep-seated hatred. This hatred reverberates with university graduate students, law students, phone company employees with a steady and decent paycheck, and even the minds of 13-year-old children. More than anything, however, such a campaign requires funding. Indeed, along with the Palestinian Authority, this terror industry is propelled by European elements, including those with affiliations to European Union governments. Despite their declared ambition of promoting peace and understanding, they are essentially providing this terror campaign with all the fuel it needs — incitement, justification and glorification.

Incitement

Imams in mosques and the leaders of Fatah and Hamas use the old libel of “Al-Aqsa is in danger” to incite the Palestinian masses. Other organizations, however, also contribute to this narrative, which has proved its effectiveness. For example, the Alternative Information Center, which is registered in Israel and is directly funded, among other sources, by the EU, published a call for “solidarity with the popular Palestinian resistance,” while warning that “fanatical groups of settlers supported by the government … are desecrating the [Temple Mount] compound … and are calling to destroy the mosque.” In addition to accusing Israel of colonialist policies of ethnic cleansing, it is also claimed that Israel and “Zionist militias” are responsible for the destruction of hundreds of churches and mosques since 1948.

Justification

In an emergency report published by the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, a Gaza-based organization funded by European governments (including some from the EU), Israeli victims are uniformly described as “settlers,” which is supposed provide political “justification” for the violence. Moreover, the report turns the attacker into the victim and blames the Israeli security forces for committing crimes. The photograph of 13-year-old terrorist Ahmad Saleh Manasra, showing him wounded and bleeding after being neutralized, became the poster child of Palestinian propaganda; similar to Muhammad al-Dura during the Second Intifada — used to portray Israel as a child killer. While completely ignoring video footage documenting his terrorist attack and eyewitness testimonies, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights writes in its report that Ahmad was on his way to buy a dove when he was attacked. And if that claim is not enough to render the organization’s professionalism and objectives a complete and utter joke — there are no dove stores in Pisgat Ze’ev either.

Glorification

The Palestinian Bar Association granted the terrorist Muhannad Halabi an honorary degree. At the onset of the current wave of terror, Halabi, a law student, murdered two civilians in Jerusalem and wounded a mother and her toddler son. Even a statutory body such as this uses propaganda to glorify murderers, but receives funding from the EU. The amounts are hard to believe: The PBA received part of a 21 million euro grant delivered in August 2013, after reportedly receiving a similar grant worth 35 million euros over the three previous years. Between 2011 and 2013, the EU gave some 1.5 million euros directly to the PBA to “enhance the professionalism of Palestinian lawyers.”

European symbols and images of European representatives in Jerusalem adorn every page of the PBA’s website. The PBA has actively encouraged terrorism for quite some time already, and has organized violent protests against Israeli security forces, hunger strikes in solidarity with security detainees, and activities aimed at “liberating Palestinian prisoners.” Meanwhile, its “strategic plan” for the years 2015-2017, which was built “with the grant director for the EU,” includes submitting international law suits against Israel as one of its objectives.

Complaints should be directed at Europe, which intentionally or not is nourishing Palestinian incitement. Without these funds the Palestinians would be more limited regarding their propaganda of delegitimization and hatred, less blood would be spilled, and the atmosphere would be calmer. Despite many meetings and discussions with European representatives, the question still remains — how can our European friends transfer so much money to those who spill Jewish blood and prepare the ground for the next murder?

Don’t let facts confuse you

October 16, 2015

Don’t let facts confuse you, Israel Hayom, Judith Bergman, October 16, 2015

When it comes to Israel and terrorism, there is a standard one-size-fits-all default formula that works whatever the facts on the ground here are. This is fortunate for the multitudes of self-declared “Middle East experts” out there, because it means that they can explain the situation here without having to resort to reality — in other words what is actually happening here — and without having to preoccupy themselves with understanding that reality.

As the Jewish radical and anti-Semite, Ilan Pappe, told the Belgian newspaper “Le Soir” in 1999: “Indeed the struggle is about ideology, not about facts. Who knows what facts are? We try to convince as many people as we can that our interpretation of the facts is the correct one, and we do it because of ideological reasons, not because we are truthseekers.”

Despite being outrageous and counter-intuitive to anything that the once truth-seeking Western civilization stood for, this quote and the worldview it represents — disturbingly similar to that of the former Soviet Union — has become the mantra, whether they are aware of it or not, of hordes of journalists, opinion makers, and politicians. You should keep that in mind, when listening to statements such as this one:

“And there’s been a massive increase in settlements over the course of the last years. Now you have this violence because there’s a frustration that is growing.”

In other words, it is “the occupation” — part one of the one-size-fits-all default formula. And no, the statement did not come from an obscure source in the Boycott, Divest and Sanction movement, but from U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.

Once the almost ritualistic “explanation,” completely removed from reality (since new settlement construction has been the lowest under Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu than under any of his predecessors, according to data from Construction Ministry), of why Israeli cities and roads are made unsafe by Palestinian terrorists on the prowl to kill Jews had been established by Kerry, he proceeded to part two of the formula: “I am not going to point fingers [at the culprits] from afar. This is a revolving cycle that damages the future for everybody.”

The mysteriously self-igniting “cycle” of violence. No mention of the situation in Israel seems possible without “the cycle.” It has been in the formula — just like the settlements — for decades. And why shouldn’t it be? After all, it frees you from attaching any weight to the current reality of unprovoked Palestinians killing Jews just because they are Jews. In fact, the inherent bias implicit in this “cycle” concept is that it is all really the Jews’ own fault.

Coming from Kerry, the statements are naturally much more disturbing than when the identical analysis — or rather lack of analysis — comes from most other politicians and opinion makers, since the U.S. is still supposed to be our biggest ally.

In stark contrast, Canadian National Defense Minister Jason Kenney posted the following message on his Facebook page on October 14: “Canada condemns in the strongest terms possible the recent wave of terror attacks against Israeli civilians that has resulted in a number of tragic deaths and injuries. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of the victims. We are deeply concerned by escalating incitement and violence that does nothing to advance the interests of peace, stability, and security in the region. There can be no justification for these attacks, and we will continue to oppose efforts undermine Israel’s legitimacy or right to defend herself in the face of terror.”

It is a rare thing for the analysis of international affairs to be subjected to such reductionist and indeed static extremes, as is the case with Israel. The one-size-fits-all default formula is recycled in all situations, regardless of facts on the ground and regardless of Israel’s actions.

There are no signs of this trend changing in the near future. In fact, the willingness of the general international public to shut eyes and ears to reality and not let it interfere with the ideology inherent in this formula has indeed become comparable to a natural reflex. That is what will happen, when you repeat a lie long enough. There is indeed now, a whole generation of Western youth literally brought up with that lie, which explains the prevalence of anti-Israel and anti-Semitic activity on university campuses.

As a consequence, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas believes he can get away with openly lying about anything. This includes claiming the child terrorist Ahmed Manasra had been “executed” by Israel, when in fact Abbas was perfectly aware that the very same terrorist is being treated with excellent care at an Israeli hospital by the very people that he was brainwashed to kill, and at the expense of the Israeli taxpayer.

Abbas knows the default formula better than anyone and he is relying on it to accomplish his goals. He knows fully well that his lies work the moment they hit the airwaves or the internet and that no amount of proof to the contrary will change that fact. The world loves a blood libel and Abbas knows that. After all, he has a Ph.D. advocating Holocaust denial and years of experience telling him that lies about Israel — the “Jenin massacre” and the Muhammad al-Dura case, just to mention a few — gain a life of their own, once they are out there, regardless of how much proof is presented to the contrary.

The workings of this kind of logic would have made the old Soviets proud. This is no coincidence, of course, since so many of the old PLO terrorists learned their trade in the communist bloc. Abbas himself earned his Ph.D. at a university in Moscow.

The Cold War ended a long time ago, but the legacy of the Soviet ideological mindset is alive and well.

Right Turn Opinion Our ‘Baghdad Bob’ president

October 7, 2015

Right Turn Opinion Our ‘Baghdad Bob’ president, Washington PostJennifer Rubin, October 7, 2015

(Ms. Rubin is WaPo’s token conservative. Do go to the link and read the generally unfavorable comments about her article. — DM). 

So it has come to this: We now can recognize that Carter was not malicious or indifferent to American influence; he was simply slow to catch on. If Carter, widely regarded as the weakest foreign policy president of the second half of the 20th century, looks good in comparison, you can understand how daft is Obama’s worldview. Had he been in Carter’s shoes, I suppose he would have cheered rather than take steps to mitigate imperialistic aggression. Umm, thank goodness Carter was in the White House and not Obama? Yes, it has come to that.

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Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf, better known as “Baghdad Bob,” was the unintentionally hilarious Iraqi information minister who, no matter what evidence to the contrary, emphatically predicted evisceration of U.S. forces during the Iraq war and denied any news suggesting otherwise. As NBC News recalled, “His last public appearance as information minister was on April 8, 2003, the day before the fall of Baghdad, when he said that the Americans ‘are going to surrender or be burned in their tanks. They will surrender, it is they who will surrender.’ ”

Baghdad Bob now seems to be the model for the Obama White House. Ramadi falls to the Islamic State? No bother, we are winning! Russia invades Ukraine? Russian President Vladimir Putin — take this! — is on the “wrong side of history,” is only going to “wreck his country’s economy and continue Russia’s isolation,” was “desperate” to talk to Obama (and the next day commenced bombing U.S.-backed rebels in Syria) and is about to get “stuck in a quagmire” in Syria. Russia moves more forces into Syria, changing the dynamic in the Middle East? President Obama brushes it aside. Putin is acting out of “weakness,” you see. Next thing you know, the Russians will have to “surrender or be burned in their tanks.”

One is tempted to assume, is hopeful even, that the president and his spokesmen don’t believe what they are saying. It is less frightening to imagine this is ham-handed excuse-mongering for a failed foreign policy than to imagine Obama thinks things are going swimmingly. If Obama actually believes we have Putin just where we want him, why not concede all of Ukraine — or the rest of the former Soviet Union, even. If it’s to our advantage to have Russia prop up Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and destroy the U.S.-backed rebels, then we should be thrilled Russia is now being invited into Iraq to bomb the Islamic State. For that matter, why not welcome Iranian domination of Iraq and a new Shiite-Russian-Iranian crescent?

This is the bizarre parallel universe in which U.S. marginalization is good, chaos is nothing to worry about, the worst human rights offenders are our partners and traditional U.S. allies (Israel, Sunni states, even Turkey) will just have to lump it. It’s a world in which the system of nation-state sovereignty is subsumed to zones of influence — without the United States getting a zone. About the only politician willing to buy into such insanity is Donald Trump, who thinks it is a swell idea to have Putin fighting the Islamic State (except he is not fighting the Islamic State).

You can see why conservatives consider Obama a sharp departure from decades of American foreign policy under Democratic and Republican presidents. Instead of acting as a guarantor of the West’s security, the friend of free peoples and a check against rogue states, we rationalize weakness and abandon innocents. We tend to describe the president’s foreign policy as “feckless,” but it is worse: It is monstrous.

Even Jimmy Carter woke up, it is said, when the Soviets invaded Afghanistan. He did not think it was a good thing that the Soviets were invading an independent nation or that the West should huff and puff but take no action.

To the contrary, in what was surely the best speech of his presidency, Carter told the country: “This invasion is an extremely serious threat to peace because of the threat of further Soviet expansion into neighboring countries in Southwest Asia and also because such an aggressive military policy is unsettling to other peoples throughout the world. This is a callous violation of international law and the United Nations Charter. It is a deliberate effort of a powerful atheistic government to subjugate an independent Islamic people.” Unlike Obama, Carter grasped the danger in letting aggressors succeed: “The United States wants all nations in the region to be free and to be independent. If the Soviets are encouraged in this invasion by eventual success, and if they maintain their dominance over Afghanistan and then extend their control to adjacent countries, the stable, strategic, and peaceful balance of the entire world will be changed. This would threaten the security of all nations including, of course, the United States, our allies, and our friends.” He went on to announce a series of concrete steps — “defer further consideration of the SALT II treaty,” “delay opening of any new American or Soviet consular facilities, and most of the cultural and economic exchanges,” “halt or to reduce exports to the Soviet Union,” suspend licensing of “high technology or other strategic items,” end grain sales, pull out of the Olympics and “provide military equipment, food, and other assistance to help Pakistan defend its independence and its national security against the seriously increased threat it now faces from the north.”

More important, unlike Obama, who is emphatic that we stay on the path of slashing our military, Carter began repairing our military and extending covert efforts, as historian Arthur Herman recalls:

The first was pledging that US defense spending would rise by 4.6 percent per year, every year for five years, starting in 1980. This shocked and infuriated his fellow Democrats — and greased the wheels for President Ronald Reagan’s military buildup. (In the event, Reagan wound up increasing defense outlays less than Carter had planned.)

The second step came in the 1980 State of the Union Address, with announcement of the Carter Doctrine: The United States would use military force if necessary to defend our interests in the Persian Gulf.

To back this up, the president authorized the creation of the first Rapid Deployment Force — the ancestor of US Central Command or CENTCOM, the wheelhouse from which the United States would direct Desert Storm in 1991 and the fall of Saddam Hussein a decade later, and which keeps the Straits of Hormuz, vital to global energy markets, safe and open today.

The last step was authorizing the first covert military aid to Afghan guerrillas fighting their Soviet occupiers. That marked the start of the Soviet quagmire in Afghanistan — a major landmark in the ultimate undoing of the Soviet Union.

You see, a “quagmire” happens only when a power is confronted, stalls and undergoes unjustified losses. Otherwise, it is called a successful invasion.

So it has come to this: We now can recognize that Carter was not malicious or indifferent to American influence; he was simply slow to catch on. If Carter, widely regarded as the weakest foreign policy president of the second half of the 20th century, looks good in comparison, you can understand how daft is Obama’s worldview. Had he been in Carter’s shoes, I suppose he would have cheered rather than take steps to mitigate imperialistic aggression. Umm, thank goodness Carter was in the White House and not Obama? Yes, it has come to that.

Off Topic? | A new global police to fight “Violent Extremism” in the U.S.?

October 6, 2015

A new global police to fight “Violent Extremism” in the U.S.? Front Page Magazine, Matthew Vadum, October 6, 2015

(Not long ago, I would have thought this a nutty conspiracy article. Now, not so much. With the UN and Obama involved, what could go wrong?  — DM)

ju

 

The Obama administration plans to create a global police force that counters “violent extremism” in the United States and elsewhere.

The problem is that in Obama-speak “violent extremism” refers not only to jihadists wishing to harm Americans but also to conservatives and Tea Party activists. Just ask all the law-abiding right-of-center nonprofit groups targeted by Lois Lerner’s IRS during the Obama presidency.

Ominously, President Obama and U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch unveiled the Strong Cities Network last week at the United Nations.

America’s chief executive, who speaks in hushed and reverent tones when discussing the Muslim faith, said the U.S. will use “all of our tools” to fight Islamic State terrorists.

“This is not an easy task,” Obama said. “This is not a conventional battle. This is a long-term campaign — not only against this particular network, but against its ideology.” The United States and a coalition of 60 other countries are “pursuing a comprehensive strategy” for dealing with Islamic State, he said.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Justice teased the Strong Cities Network in a press release:

Cities are vital partners in international efforts to build social cohesion and resilience to violent extremism.  Local communities and authorities are the most credible and persuasive voices to challenge violent extremism in all of its forms and manifestations in their local contexts.  While many cities and local authorities are developing innovative responses to address this challenge, no systematic efforts are in place to share experiences, pool resources and build a community of cities to inspire local action on a global scale.

“The Strong Cities Network will serve as a vital tool to strengthen capacity-building and improve collaboration,” Lynch was quoted saying. “As we continue to counter a range of domestic and global terror threats, this innovative platform will enable cities to learn from one another, to develop best practices and to build social cohesion and community resilience here at home and around the world.”

The media release continues:

The SCN will include an International Steering Committee of approximately 25 cities and other sub-national entities from different regions that will provide the SCN with its strategic direction.  The SCN will also convene an International Advisory Board, which includes representatives from relevant city-focused networks, to help ensure SCN builds upon their work.  It will be run by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD), a leading international “think-and-do” tank with a long-standing track record of working to prevent violent extremism …

Although the European scene is different from the American, the London-based Institute for Strategic Dialogue doesn’t come across at first glance as a neutral observer.

Its website, which is filled with left-wing buzzwords, warns

The tragic attacks in Norway on 22 July, 2011 drew Europe’s gaze to the dangers of the growing presence of far-right extremism across Europe and the increasing legitimisation of anti-immigration and anti-Islamic discourses within mainstream European politics. The blurred relationship between violence from the extreme right and broader trends of Islamophobia and anti-immigration sentiment poses several challenges for policy makers seeking to address the increasing risk of violent right-wing extremism.

And although American conservatives might not quibble with a new U.S.-based initiative aimed at “violent extremism” outside America’s borders, they have ample reason to be concerned about one that targets organizations within the United States.

Conservative champion Pamela Geller railed against the Strong Cities Network in a column at Breitbart News.

This plan “amounts to nothing less than the overriding of American laws, up to and including the United States Constitution, in favor of United Nations laws that would henceforth be implemented in the United States itself – without any consultation of Congress at all.”

Announcing the plan at the United Nations is curious she writes, because the UN “is a sharia-compliant world body, and Obama, speaking there just days ago, insisted that ‘violent extremism’ is not exclusive to Islam (which it is).”

It is unlikely the new body will be used as a “global police force” to crush counter-jihad forces, she wrote.

After all, with Obama knowingly aiding al-Qaeda forces in Syria, how likely is it that he will use his “global police force” against actual Islamic jihadists?

I suspect that instead, this global police force will be used to impose the blasphemy laws under the sharia (Islamic law), and to silence all criticism of Islam for the President who proclaimed that “the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.”

Geller and other conservatives are painfully aware that in the parlance of the Left, “violent extremism” refers to conservatives and other patriotic Americans.

If you are opposed to enlarging the redistributive state and spreading the wealth around then by definition you’re a potential terrorist.  If you’re a conservative or a libertarian, if you believe in gun rights or don’t support abortion rights or an immigration amnesty, if you don’t like high taxes or welfare programs or if you dare to believe that the Constitution actually limits the power of the government, you’re at risk of turning to terrorism.

In 2009, Janet Napolitano, then head of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security gave her blessing to a spurious DHS report titled, “Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment.”

Drawing heavily from so-called research by the loony-left Southern Poverty Law Center, the report lumped Ku Klux Klansmen and violent militias together with good government types and members of the Federalist Society. This law enforcement guidance claimed that large swaths of the nation that did not vote Democratic in the last election were boiling over with hatred and intolerance.

Anticlimactically, the report noted that there is no actual evidence “that domestic rightwing terrorists are currently planning acts of violence.” Nonetheless the report speculated, using language that would later be embraced by the violent Occupy Wall Street movement, that “the economic downturn and the election of the first African American president” might help these “rightwing extremists” gain new recruits.

Guffaws from Republicans and some of her fellow Democrats forced Napolitano to disavow the report but in the intervening years Obama’s DHS has kept up the pressure on patriotic Americans in an attempt to stigmatize and marginalize conservative beliefs.

As recently as this past February, DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson released a report on what CNN called the grave “domestic terror threat from right-wing sovereign citizen extremists.”

“The government says these are extremists who believe that they can ignore laws and that their individual rights are under attack in routine daily instances such as a traffic stop or being required to obey a court order,” the news network reported.

To the Obama administration, zealous civil libertarians and ornery old guys in pickup trucks are a much greater threat to the homeland than Occupy Wall Street, Black Lives Matter, al Qaeda, and Islamic State combined.

CNN paraphrased Mark Potok, a senior fellow at — you guessed it, the Southern Poverty Law Center — hailing the report.

“Potok said that by some estimates, there are as many as 300,000 people involved in some way with sovereign citizen extremism. Perhaps 100,000 people form a core of the movement, he said.”

Around the same time counterinsurgency and counterterrorism expert Sebastian Gorka ridiculed the obviously politicized DHS report for going off the deep end.

Gorka, a professor who lectures on irregular warfare at the College of International Security Affairs at the National Defense University, said over the last two decades he could not remember right-wing extremists flying jumbo jets into buildings, bombing a marathon, or beheading Christian hostages.

“It really is the most egregious politicization of national security,” Gorka opined. “We’re going to be looking for right-wing extremists when ISIS prepares to attack us? It’s outrageous.”

“We have tens of thousands of people in the Middle East and elsewhere and here in America who have committed themselves to the destruction of this great nation. And we’re going to be focusing on the small cluster of right-wingers here in the United States?” he said. “This could endanger American lives.”

All of this brings to mind the jarringly strange thing then-Senator Obama said on the campaign trail in October 2008.

“We cannot continue to rely only on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we’ve set,” he said. “We’ve got to have a civilian national security force that’s just as powerful, just as strong, just as well funded.”

Is the Strong Cities Network the civilian national security force Obama mentioned just once and then never brought up again?

We’re about to find out.

Israel’s Risk Aversion Problem

October 2, 2015

Israel’s Risk Aversion Problem, Town Hall, Caroline Glick, October 2, 2015

Netanyahu and glasses

Because his strategy is based on ideological beliefs rather than power calculations rooted in reality, Obama’s position cannot be swayed by evidence, even when evidence shows that his administration’s policies endanger US national security.

The more Israel allows other actors to determine the nature of the emerging regional order, the less secure Israel will be. The more willing we are to take calculated risks today the greater our ability will be to influence the future architecture of regional power relations and so minimize threats to our survival in the decades to come.

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On Wednesday the Obama administration was caught off guard by Russia’s rapid rise in Syria. As the Russians began bombing a US-supported militia along the Damascus-Homs highway, Secretary of State John Kerry was meeting with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, at the UN. Just hours before their meeting Kerry was insisting that Russia’s presence in Syria would likely be a positive development.

Reacting to the administration’s humiliation, Republican Sen. John McCain said, “This administration has confused our friends, encouraged our enemies, mistaken an excess of caution for prudence and replaced the risks of action with the perils of inaction.”

McCain added that Russian President Vladimir Putin had stepped “into the wreckage of this administration’s Middle East policy.”

While directed at the administration, McCain’s general point is universally applicable. Today is no time for an overabundance of caution.

The system of centralized regimes that held sway in the Arab world since the breakup of the Ottoman Empire nearly a century ago has unraveled. The shape of the new order has yet to be determined.

The war in Syria and the chaos and instability engulfing the region are part and parcel of the birth pangs of a new regional governing architecture now taking form. Actions taken by regional and global actors today will likely will influence power relations for generations.

Putin understands the opportunity of the moment.

He views the decomposition of Syria as an opportunity to rebuild Russia’s power and influence in the Middle East – at America’s expense.

Russia isn’t the only strategic player seeking to exploit the war in Syria and the regional chaos. Turkey and Iran are also working assiduously to take advantage of the current absence of order to advance their long term interests.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is exploiting the rise of Islamic State in Syria and Iraq to fight the Kurds in both countries. Erdogan’s goal is twofold: to prevent the establishment of an independent Kurdistan and to disenfranchise the Kurds in Turkey.

As for Iran, Syria is Iran’s bulwark against Sunni power in the Arab world and the logistical base for Tehran’s Shi’ite foreign legion Hezbollah. Iranian dictator Ali Khamenei is willing to fight to the bitter end to hold as much of Syrian territory as possible.

Broadly speaking, Iran views the breakup of the Arab state system as both a threat and an opportunity.

The chaos threatens Iran, because it has radicalized the Sunni world. If Sunni forces unite, their numeric advantage against Shi’ite Iran will imperil it.

The power of Sunni numbers is the reason Bashar Assad now controls a mere sixth of Syrian territory. To prevent his fate from befalling them, the Iranians seek to destabilize neighboring regimes and where possible install proxy governments in their stead.

Iran’s cultivation of alliances and proxy relationships with Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood and al-Qaida, and its phony war against Islamic State all point to an overarching goal of keeping Sunni forces separated and dependent on Tehran.

The Iranian regime also fears the prospect of being overthrown by its domestic opponents. To counter this threat the regime engages in large-scale and ever escalating repression of its perceived foes.

Iran’s nuclear program also plays a key role in the regime’s survival strategy. As Khamenei and his underlings see things, nuclear weapons protect the regime in three ways. They deter Iran’s external foes. They increase domestic support for the regime by enriching Iran which, no longer under international sanctions, sees its diplomatic and economic prestige massively enhanced due to its nuclear program.

Finally, there is Iran’s war with Israel and the US. A nuclear-armed Iran is a direct threat to both countries.

And this, too, is a boon for the mullacracy. From the regime’s perspective, fighting Israel and the US serves to neutralize the Sunni threat to the regime. The more Iran is seen as fighting Israel and the US the more legitimate it appears to Sunni jihadists.

This then brings us to the Americans. Like the Russians, the Turks and the Iranians, President Barack Obama and his associates are strategic players. Unlike those powers however, the administration is moved not by raw power calculations but by ideological dictates.

Obama and his advisers are convinced that the instability and radicalization of states and actors throughout the region is the consequence of the actions of past US administrations and those of America’s regional allies – first and foremost, Israel and Egypt. The basis for this conviction is the administration’s post-colonial ideological underpinnings.

Because his strategy is based on ideological beliefs rather than power calculations rooted in reality, Obama’s position cannot be swayed by evidence, even when evidence shows that his administration’s policies endanger US national security.

This brings us to Israel.

Israel has limited power to influence regional events.

It cannot change its neighbors’ values or cultures. Israel can however limit its neighbors’ ability to harm it and expand its ability to deter would be aggressors by among other things, using its power judiciously to influence now forming power balances between various regional and world actors.

Israel has followed this model in Syria with notable success.

At an early stage of the war our leaders recognized that aside from the Kurds, who have no shared border with us, there are no viable actors in Syria that are not dangerous to Israel. As a result, Israel has no interest in the victory of one group against others.

The only actor in Syria that Israel has felt it necessary to actively rein in is Hezbollah. So it has acted repeatedly to prevent Hezbollah from using its operational presence in Syria as a means for augmenting its offensive capabilities in Lebanon.

The problem with this strategy is that it has ignored the fact that from Hezbollah’s perspective, there is no operational difference between Lebanon and Syria.

The war in Syria spread to Lebanon years ago.

Now, with Iranian and Russian assistance, Hezbollah is beginning to develop the industrial capacity to bypass Israel and independently produce advanced weapons inside Lebanon. This rapid industrialization of Hezbollah’s military capabilities requires Israel to end its respect for the all-but-destroyed international border and take direct action against Hezbollah’s capabilities in Lebanon.

This brings us to Hezbollah’s boss, Iran. For the past several years, the same caution that has led Israel to grant de facto immunity to Hezbollah forces in Lebanon has led to Israel’s passivity and deference to the Obama administration in relation to Iran’s nuclear program.

With regard to Iran’s nuclear installations, the strategy of passivity has largely been forced onto an unwilling political leadership by Israel’s military leaders.

For the past several years, the IDF’s General Staff has refused to support the government’s position on Iran’s nuclear program.

Our military leaders have justified their insubordination by arguing that if Israel takes independent action against Iran’s nuclear program it will undermine its bilateral relations with the US, which they consider more important than preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

Although under the best of circumstances, the IDF’s position would be unacceptable from the perspective of democratic norms of governance, since the ideologically driven Obama administration took power seven years ago, the military’s position has imperiled the country.

So long as Obama – or the ideology that informs his actions – remains in power in Washington, US security guarantees towards Israel will have no credibility.

The IDF’s assessment that ties to the US are more important than preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear power will remain incorrect, and dangerously so.

Today is Israel’s opportunity to shape the future of the Middle East by not only preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear power, but by preventing a regional nuclear arms race.

The closer Iran comes to emerging as a nuclear power, the more Sunni regimes, including Islamic State, will seek their own nuclear capabilities. It goes without saying that the more regional actors have nuclear weapons, the more dangerous the region becomes for Israel, and indeed for the world as a whole.

For many Israelis, the story of the week wasn’t Russia’s air strikes against US-allied forces in Syria. It was PLO chief and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s speech at the UN General Assembly.

Leftists expressed horror in the face of Abbas’s threat to end the PLO’s adherence to the agreements it signed with Israel in the 1990s (and has stood in material breach of ever since). The government insisted, for its part that the reason the peace process has not brought peace is because Abbas and his PLO refuse to negotiate with Israel.

Unfortunately, both sides’ responses to Abbas’s speech indicate that Israel has lost all semblance of strategic purpose in regard to the Palestinians.

Fifteen years ago this week, on September 28, 2000, the Palestinians opened their terrorist war against Israel. Ever since it has been clear that no Palestinian faction is interested in living at peace with Israel.

Despite this, for the past 15 years, Israel has refused to reconsider its strategic allegiance to the false notion that it has the ability to influence the hearts and minds of the Palestinians and bend them in the direction of peace.

This delusional thinking is what caused the IDF’s General Staff to convene immediately after Operation Protective Edge ended and try to figure out how to rebuild Gaza.

Ever since the cease-fire came into force, Hamas has diverted all the assistance it has received from Israel and the international community not to rebuild Gaza, but to rebuild its military capacity to harm Israel. And yet, from the IDF’s perspective, ever since the war ended our most urgent task has been to save Hamas and the Palestinians alike from reckoning with the price of their aggression.

Likewise, Israel continues to insist that we have a strategic interest in peace with the PLO. Even if this is true in theory, chances are greater that unicorns will fall from the sky and prance through Jerusalem’s Old City than that the PLO will agree to make peace with Israel.

Our continued defense of the PLO as a legitimate actor harms our ability to secure other strategic interests that are achievable and can improve Israel’s regional position. These interests include securing transportation arteries in Judea and Samaria and strengthening Israel’s military and political control over the areas. These interests have only grown more acute in recent years with the rise of jihadist forces throughout the region and among the Palestinians themselves.

This brings us back to McCain and his strategic wisdom.

Israel must not allow the risks of action to lure us into strategic paralysis that imperils our future.

The more Israel allows other actors to determine the nature of the emerging regional order, the less secure Israel will be. The more willing we are to take calculated risks today the greater our ability will be to influence the future architecture of regional power relations and so minimize threats to our survival in the decades to come.