Archive for the ‘Rules of engagement’ category

Trump Takes on Terrorism in His First Hundred Days

April 24, 2017

Trump Takes on Terrorism in His First Hundred Days, BreitbartKristina Wong, April 24, 2017

President Trump made defeating radical Islamic terrorists a key part of his presidential campaign. So far in his first 100 days, experts say he is making good on that promise.

“Right now, I give him an A honestly,” Retired Army Lt. Gen. Thomas Spoehr, director of the Center for National Defense at the Heritage Foundation, told Breitbart News.

 Underscoring that progress was the U.S. military’s announcement Friday that it had killed a close associate of Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) founder Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in a ground raid in Syria.

The associate, Abdurakhmon Uzbeki, had planned the deadly New Year’s Eve attack at a nightclub in Istanbul, which killed 39 civilians.

In Trump’s first three months in office, there’s been a significant uptick in the number of airstrikes targeting terrorists in the Middle East, North Africa, and Afghanistan.

U.S. military officials say Trump has not given the military any “new” authorities – in terms of long-standing rules and standards governing the use of force.

But what Trump has done is expand commanders’ targeting authorities in some locations, roll back restrictions put into place by the Obama administration, and encourage military commanders to exercise the authority they already have.

“We’re actually using the authorities that weren’t used before for political reasons,” a senior White House official told Breitbart News. “Theater commanders have been unshackled. Everyone’s been unshackled to do their job.”

Specifically, Trump has rolled back in some areas a 2013 requirement put into place by former President Obama requiring all counterterrorism airstrikes outside of a conventional war zone like Afghanistan be vetted by the White House and other agencies.

Under Obama, such counterterrorism strikes would undergo “high-level, interagency vetting” to ensure that the targets posed a threat to Americans, and that there was a “near-certainty” that no civilians would be killed, according to the New York Times.

About a week after his inauguration, Trump approved a Pentagon proposal to roll back those requirements in Yemen, to allow the military to step up the counterterrorism fight in Yemen against Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) — considered the most dangerous al-Qaeda affiliate for its repeated attempts to attack the U.S. homeland.

The plan included the designation of three provinces in Yemen as “areas of active hostilities,” which allows commanders to strike when there is a “reasonable certainty” that no civilians will be killed, versus a “near certainty,” as reported by ABC News.

As a result, the number of strikes against AQAP has almost doubled under Trump, from 40 confirmed strikes in 2016, to at least 76 so far.

Similarly, President Trump in March designated parts of Somalia as areas of active hostilities, which granted U.S. Africom Commander Marine Gen. Thomas Waldhauser the authority to conduct offensive counterterrorism strikes and raids, versus striking only when Americans were under threat, and when there’s a “near-certainty” no civilians will be killed.

There have been no confirmed U.S. airstrikes in Somalia yet since the designation, but Africom is stepping up their advising mission. The command confirmed last Monday it were sending a “few dozen” U.S. soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division to Somalia to train Somali National Army and African Union peacekeepers – a doubling of American special operations forces there, according to CNN. Officials said the deployment was planned before Trump took office.

In the fight against ISIS, Trump during his first week on the job ordered Defense Secretary Jim Mattis to come up with a plan within 30 days on how to defeat the terrorist group.

Mattis submitted a plan, to be then fleshed out by the Central Command commander. The plan is in its final stages of planning, the senior White House official said.

In the meantime, the number of strikes in Iraq and Syria reached a record high in March since the U.S.-led air war began in 2014 — 3,878, according to statistics released periodically by U.S. Central Command.

Officials say the increase in airstrikes against ISIS has to do with the current phase of the campaign — simultaneous offensives in Mosul, Iraq and Raqqa, Syria — rather than any changes under Trump. They also say Centcom commander Army Gen. Joe Votel in December allowed for the delegating of strike authority from a three-star general to a one-star general to speed up the approval process for airstrikes.

But U.S. strikes against al-Qaeda in Syria — which is separate from the ISIS fight — have also seen a “relative increase” since Trump took office, a defense official said.

The U.S. military in late February also killed al-Qaeda’s second in command in Syria, and in March conducted a strike against al Qaeda in Jinah, which U.S. officials said killed a “few dozen” militants.

And more is expected to come in the ISIS fight, as the administration finalizes its new plan. A U.S. military official recently told Breitbart News that the strategy of U.S. troops supporting local forces on the ground – versus taking a direct combat role – will be “enduring.”

More U.S. forces are expected to deploy to Syria, however, where they would likely support local forces in what is expected to be a hard fight for ISIS’s de facto capital.

The Trump administration is also reviewing whether to get rid of limits set by the Obama administration on the numbers of U.S. troops who are authorized to deploy to Iraq and Syria.

The Obama administration had placed strict caps on the number of U.S. troops serving in Iraq and Syria, in an effort to keep troop numbers as low as possible. Currently, 5,262 are authorized for Iraq, and 503 troops for Syria. But in reality, there were hundreds more deployed on a “temporary” basis that weren’t counted, making those numbers misleading.

“In the previous administration, the secretary had to check very often with the White House, and the president, to deploy forces, especially if they were bumping up the cap,” Spoehr said.

Commanders also complained that the troop caps led to the deployment of only parts of a unit, forcing them to rely on contractors abroad for logistical support and waste taxpayer dollars.

In Afghanistan, there has been a 270-percent increase in airstrikes under Trump – from 54 in January to 200 in February – the largest increase in at least six years.

Recently, Army Gen. John “Mick” Nicholson, U.S. commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, ordered the dropping of the largest non-nuclear bomb in the U.S.’s arsenal – nicknamed the “Mother of All Bombs,” or MOAB – to root out a complex of tunnels and caves in Afghanistan used by the ISIS’s affiliate in Afghanistan, ISIS-Khorasan.

U.S. military officials said no new authorities were granted for the bombing, which fell within Nicholson’s existing authorities to order strikes against ISIS since January 2016. Current and former defense officials recently told The New York Times that he would probably have checked with his superiors under Obama.

The senior White House official gone are the days of the last administration when tactical decisions — from positioning ships to whether an A-10 attack fighter jet could strike or not — were being made by National Security Council staffers.

Former Secretaries of Defense Leon Panetta and Robert Gates both lambasted the micromanagement military commanders faced from the NSC under Obama. In his memoir Duty, Gates famously wrote about discovering a direct phone line from a White House staffer to a special operations command center in Afghanistan, and immediately ordering it to be ripped out.

“It’s the micromanagement that disappeared… the informal political things that were laid on top,” the senior White House official said.

Jonathan Schanzer, vice president of Foundation for Defense of Democracies, praised the new approach.

“I think we long-expected this president to be a delegator, that essentially being a businessman, his approach was that he was going to find excellent people, and give them their portfolios, especially given that the president himself didn’t have vast knowledge in the area of defense and foreign policy,” he said.

“That was never, I think, his forte, so the idea that he would delegate to experts seems to be a very wise decision.”

He also praised Nicholson’s decision to drop the MOAB on ISIS, which he said sent a message to all of the U.S.’s other adversaries.

“I think it’s important that [Trump] trusts them in their ability to deliver these sorts of strategic messages,” he said.

And Spoehr, who served as deputy commanding general of U.S. forces in Iraq in 2011, said allowing commanders to do their jobs has been a huge morale boost for the military.

“I think, in nearly every dimension, you can see a noticeable difference, that things have ratcheted-up… a little bit more spring in people’s step, little bit of a fire in people’s eyes,” he said.

The senior White House official agreed: “Morale is so much higher.”

General Allen’s Service to Al Qaeda’s Paymasters

August 4, 2016

General Allen’s Service to Al Qaeda’s Paymasters, Front Page Magazine, Daniel Greenfield, August 4, 2016

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After two American soldiers were murdered by an Islamic terrorist in Afghanistan while a crowd of protesters shouted “Death to Americans” and “Death to Infidels”, General Allen visited his men. 

“There will be moments like this when you’re searching for the meaning of this loss. There will be moments like this when your emotions are governed by anger and a desire to strike back,” Allen pleaded. “Now is not the time for revenge, now is not the time for vengeance.”

General Allen had already apologized to the killers for the “desecration” of the Koran by American soldiers who had been destroying copies of the hateful document being used by Taliban prisoners to send notes to each other. “I offer my sincere apologies for any offence this may have caused, to the president of Afghanistan, the government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, and most importantly, to the noble people of Afghanistan,” he had whined.

The “noble people” of Afghanistan were the ones chanting “Death to America” and “Death to Infidels”.

Meanwhile General Allen was telling the American soldiers grieving the loss of their own that the real tragedy was the destruction of the terrorist books. “Now is how we show the Afghan people that as bad as that act was in Bagram, it was unintentional and Americans and ISAF soldiers do not stand for this.”

Then Allen said that he was “proud” to call General Sher Mohammad Karimi “my brother”. Karimi, was the Afghan military strongman who had defended previous attacks on NATO troops and demanded that the American soldiers be put on trial.

“We admit our mistake,” General Allen cringingly continued. “We ask for our forgiveness.”

Then he praised the “Holy Koran”. Six American military personnel faced administrative punishments for doing their duty in order to appease the murderous Islamic mob in all its nobility in Afghanistan.

This was typical of General Allen’s disgraceful tenure. It is also typical of his post-military career which has included a prominent spot at Brookings and a speaking slot at the Democratic National Convention. After his enthusiastic endorsement of Hillary and attacks on Trump, Hillary has insisted that anyone who criticizes Allen is not fit to be president because Allen is a “hero and a patriot”.

If there’s anyone who is an expert on heroism and patriotism, it’s Hillary.

Allen’s heroic post-military career brought him to Brookings. The road from the think tank runs to Qatar which donated nearly $15 million to promote its agenda. That agenda took General Allen to its US-Islamic World Forum in Doha, Qatar.

Allen praised the “magnificent institutions” of Qatar. He endorsed the mobilization of the Jihadist terror groups known as Popular Mobilization Forces, some of whom have American blood on their hands and are owned and operated by Iran. Allen insisted that “many PMF fighters are not Shia-hardliners but Iraqis who volunteered last summer, answering Grand Ayatolah Ali Sistanti’s fatwa to defend Iraq.”

Then Allen sank to a new unimaginable low by urging compassion toward ISIS Jihadists from abroad.

“We must strive to be a Coalition of compassionate states,” Allen insisted. “There is no denying that many societies find the idea of rehabilitating foreign fighters objectionable. And indeed, those who have broken the laws of our lands must be held accountable. But long-term detention cannot be the sole means of dealing with returning foreign fighters.”

Then he touted “deradicalization” and “reintegration” programs by Muslim countries for Jihadists.

Allen claimed that seeing the “Muslim faith practiced and lived” in Afghanistan had made him a “better Christian”. But his messaging wasn’t surprising considering his employment and his location.

Qatar was a key international state sponsor of terror.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of 9/11, had been tipped off by a member of the Qatari royal family. The same Qatari royal family whose shindig Allen had shown up to perform at. Their terrorist media outlet, Al Jazeera, had been Al Qaeda’s media drop outlet of choice.

Qatar is a strong backer of Hamas. It has been accused of funding Al Qaeda. More recently it’s been linked to backing Al Qaeda’s local platform in Syria, the Al Nusra Front. The Taliban opened an office in Qatar. Even an early ISIS leader got his start with patronage from Qatar’s royal family.

A strong backer of the Arab Spring, Qatar exploited the chaos by aggressively smuggling weapons to Jihadists in the region. Two years ago, a bipartisan majority on the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Middle East and its Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade had called for an investigation of Qatar’s links to terrorist funding.

General Allen’s visit to Qatar was shameful. He was praising and pressing the flesh of the paymasters of Islamic terrorists whose hands were and are covered in American blood. Allen had betrayed the soldiers fighting against Islamic terrorists. He had betrayed his country and his cause. He is a traitor to both.

Allen’s disgusting DNC performance was the climax of a series of betrayals. It is not the worst speech he has ever given. Nor is it the most dishonest or the most despicable.

General Allen has gone from serving his country to serving the enemies of his country. That is the man whose endorsement Hillary Clinton is proudly waving around as if it is a badge of honor instead of a badge of shame.

Allen is neither a hero nor a patriot. He is a man who has sold his soul to the highest bidder. Hillary Clinton has won this latest bid for Allen’s shopworn soul, alongside the tyrants of Qatar who trade in human slaves on a global scale. It is likely worth about as much as Hillary’s own soul. Whatever tattered spiritual scraps are left of it.

The mass deaths of American soldiers in Afghanistan under Obama still remains a largely untold story. It is the story of how Obama and his collaborators among the military elite sold out our soldiers and left them to die on the battlefield without allowing them to defend themselves so as not to offend the “noble people” of Afghanistan and their fine religious traditions.

74.5% of American deaths in Afghanistan occurred under Obama. Countless more came home, crippled and scarred. While General Allen hobnobs at parties with Al Qaeda bosses, the men he betrayed come back in body bags.

They are heroes. Allen is a traitor.

Perception as deterrence – Israel’s new Defense Minister

May 20, 2016

Perception as deterrence – Israel’s new Defense Minister, American ThinkerRon Jager, May 20, 2016

The recent news that Avigdor Liberman, a former Israeli Foreign Minister and head of the Yisrael Beiteinu party, a small right-wing party, will replace Moshe “Bogie” Ya’alon as the new Israeli defense minister  and has been portrayed by the Israeli media and their elitist opinion makers with dismay and stupefaction.  In Tel-Aviv, a city known for its progressive and leftist inclination, many muttered that the municipality should start opening up the air raid shelters as Lieberman’s appointment hit the airwaves. Lieberman, a politician feared and despised by the Israeli left, is being demonized and delitigitimized even before his appointed has gone into effect. Yet the potential appointment of Avigdor Lieberman as Defense Minister has thrown the whole Palestinian leadership and Israeli Arab politicians into a frenzy, making the reaction by Israel’s leftist elite seem mild. Claiming that Israel is adopting characteristics of a fascist regime and calling for the boycott of Israel; stating that “the Israeli government is sending a message to the world that Israel prefers extremism, dedication to the occupation and settlements over peace,” and encouraging blatant racism, are only a fraction of the derogatory and slanderous accusations against a veteran politician who has been democratically elected.

The potential appointment of Avigdor Lieberman to the position of Defense Minister may very well herald a new and more effective deterrence against the Palestinians’ desire to get up in the morning and murder a Jew. The Palestinian Arab perception of Lieberman as a person who believes in the sanctification of power, ruthlessness, violence, and ignorance with murderous potential can very well be exactly what will cause the Palestinians to adopt a more realistic assessment of what a negotiated settlement will look like.

This is their dilemma, and this is their choice. Either continue and deny reality, taking their chances with a Defense Minister who is perceived as having no problems with employing a strict crackdown wherever Palestinian terror erupts, who has no qualms about enforcing strict rules of engagement, making it crystal clear that Israel’s strategy is based on the adage of our Sages, “If someone rises to kill you, kill him first,” or begin to negotiate seriously and honestly to achieve a sustainable peace agreement with Israel. The perception of Avigdor Lieberman by the Palestinian Arabs could very well facilitate this change.

As Israel’s strategic deterrence and capabilities have been proven to be highly effective in recent years with land, sea, and air strategic capabilities becoming literally impenetrable, the main task facing Israel’s Defense Minister will be primarily in the Palestinian theatre. The Middle East, being a region highly susceptible to a cultural disposition to base one’s reaction on who how one perceives one’s enemy, may very well bring the Palestinian Arab leadership to fold their cards and start the arduous and unavoidable process of negotiating with Israel.

For the majority of the past eight years, President Obama and State Department “experts” have been treating the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as the central generator of political upheaval ravaging the Middle East. They do not realize just how marginal the conflict with the Palestinian Arabs has become or understand that as far as the Sunni Arab nations of the Middle East, the future Palestinian State, should it be established, will be just another failed Arab nation in perpetual conflict with its own people and with her neighbors.

As far as the Palestinian Authority (PA) that resides in Ramallah is concerned, the lack of legitimacy in the eyes of their own people is only exceeded by the widespread and institutionalized corruption by its leaders, sustained by international funding from the United States and the European Union. Having rejected over the years any possibility of a negotiated settlement, the PA leadership have proven without a doubt that they have no intention of reaching any agreement.. The only goal of the Palestinian Arab leadership has been to gain territories and use them for the next attack aimed at minimizing and weakening Israel. Apart from that, there is nothing: No democracy, no economy, no law and no future for the Palestinian Arabs other than being in a perpetual cycle of meaningless and unsuccessful conflict with Israel. Israel will continue to move ahead and forge alliances with Sunni Arab neighbors and the Palestinian Arabs will wallow in their misery as they continue to deny reality and believe in their own made-up propaganda narrative.

The unprecedented political changes having taken place in the Middle East in recent years mainly due to Obama’s irresponsible and failed strategic policy decisions have resulted in new emerging alliances between Israel and her neighbors. Despite the challenges that Iran continues to pose to Israel and the potential of her leaders who might use the conflict with Israel as a means of rallying political support in her war with the Sunni Arab nations, the threat of renewed conventional conflict between Israel and her Arab neighbors has been downgraded, while more realistic scenarios envision a greater focus on economic cooperation and regional stability. Although it is far too early to predict the success of the new political alliances and strategic order that will eventually emerge from the changes in the Arab world, the inherent asymmetry of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs will maintain this conflict on low burner for the foreseeable future with sporadic eruptions of terror and limited missile attacks similar to what that the Israeli population has had to endure in recent years.


The unfair media bias

April 3, 2016

The unfair media bias, Israel Hayom, Steven Emerson, April 3, 2016

The willful blindness of the Western media and intellectual elites to Palestinian incitement and their hyper-focus on any incident they can use to portray Israel in a negative light were on abundant display last week when footage emerged of an Israel Defense Forces soldier shooting a wounded and disarmed Palestinian terrorist.

Since then, The New York Times and The Washington Post have run no fewer than 16 stories about the incident. This volume of coverage reinforces the patently mendacious Israel-is-evil “narrative” promoted by the mainstream media, the liberal elites in bed with Palestinian and jihadist killers, the demonstrably one-sided United Nations, and the sanctimonious rants of several congressional leaders who claim they are speaking out in the name of human rights.

Meanwhile, these same news outlets consistently fail to speak out against the massive and ongoing denial of human rights, suppression of basic freedoms and daily torture meted out to any Palestinian dissident by both the Palestinian Authority and Hamas. Many of these violations have been investigated and documented in horrific detail by the courageous Palestinian human rights advocate Bassam Eid.

No, the “narrative” does not allow mainstream news outlets to file negative reports on Palestinian human rights violations, their rampant corruption, and most importantly, their massive incitement to terrorist violence, which is being promoted by the very leadership of the Palestinian Authority. This includes vile lessons in how to kill Jews, taught in U.S.-sponsored Palestinian schools and universities, and instructional videos on stabbing and murdering Jews being shown to thousands of Palestinian schoolchildren.

The latest incident to manifest the “narrative” took place on March 24, when two Palestinians in the West Bank city of Hebron stabbed an Israeli soldier. Soldiers then shot them in self defense, killing one and leaving the other critically wounded and lying on the ground. Video of the incident taken by an activist belonging to the left-wing group B’Tselem showed an IDF soldier shooting the wounded Palestinian in the head, in clear violation of military rules. The IDF says it intends to seek manslaughter charges.

The shooting took place in the midst of a six-month wave of terrorist attacks by Palestinians, who have been attacking Israeli civilians at random, not just in the West Bank, but throughout Israel. Palestinians have slaughtered at least 34 Israelis — stabbing them to death in stores, in synagogues, in their apartments and on the street, and ramming them to death with their cars. Daring to step out onto the street almost anywhere in Israel has become a game of Russian roulette these days.

The B’Tselem footage went viral and sparked a major debate in Israel. The attention that the two newspapers have given to this story rivals the attention they have given to major, far more lethal, terror attacks, clearly demonstrating their anti-Israel bias. They have disproportionately played up the support for the soldier among the Israeli public, minimizing the significant number of Israelis who, according to polls, condemn this soldier’s actions. More egregiously, they have disproportionately underreported the massive anti-Israeli incitement that the Palestinian Authority government, educational institutions and media have engaged in for years — especially these last six months — that helped incite these terror attacks against Israeli civilians.

Make no mistake. This is the real scandal: the deliberate suppression of this news that is vital to an informed public.

Contrary to what the Western media would have us believe, particularly in light of the torrent of stories in the Post and Times, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the IDF unreservedly condemned the soldier’s actions from the moment it was reported to them.

“What happened in Hebron does not represent the values of the Israel Defense Forces,” Netanyahu said on the day of the shooting. “The IDF expects its soldiers to behave level-headedly and in accordance with the rules of engagement.”

Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon likewise condemned the shooting: “Even when our blood is boiling, we must not allow such a loss of sense, such a loss of control. … Woe to us if we act contrary to our moral values and our conscience.”

IDF Spokesman Brig. Gen. Moti Almoz stated: “The chief of staff [Lt. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot] views the incident with severity and has ordered a full probe. This is not the IDF, these are not the values of the IDF and these are not the values of the Jewish people.”

Yet instead of giving equal attention to these condemnations, the Times and Post have continued to play up the support within Israel for the soldier, who has claimed in his defense that he feared the wounded Palestinian was wearing a suicide vest and still posed a threat. Worldwide media coverage — led by the two newspapers — has faithfully followed the “narrative” in portraying Israel as violating all the norms of civilized nations regarding warfare.

In reality, the IDF is one of the most moral armies in the world, a fact attested to in 2014 during Operation Protective Edge by the widely respected former commander of British forces in Afghanistan, retired Col. Richard Kemp.

“No army in the world acts with as much discretion and great care as the IDF in order to minimize damage,” he stated after studying Israeli tactics, which included warnings to civilians in advance of airstrikes. “The U.S. and the U.K. are careful, but not as much as Israel.”

Between March 24 and March 30, the Times and the Post published a total of 12 stories focusing on this one episode, twice as many as they published on the suicide bombing in Pakistan last week that killed 70 civilians. That’s four times the number of stories the two papers published on the massive Palestinian incitement during the six months of the latest terror wave, involving knifings, shootings and other terrorist killings.

In contrast to the Times’ and Post’s obsessive interest in the story of the Israeli soldier, it is important to note what happens when a Palestinian terrorist kills an Israeli civilian. How do the New York Times and Washington Post cover such incidents? The answer is simple: They barely cover them, and when they do, they are sure to assert with equal weight the Palestinian rationalization for such terrorism. Say, if the Post and Times were held to equal journalistic standards covering terrorism, why don’t we read about Islamic State’s justification of beheadings and massive executions?

In the past six months alone, the veteran and highly regarded organizations Middle East Media Research Institute and Palestinian Media Watch have documented scores of incidents of official Palestinian governmental and institutional incitement to carry out terrorism against the “Jew” and the “infidel.” Both MEMRI and PMW have recorded and translated dozens of videos and Palestinian media recordings of Palestinian leaders, reporters, Islamic leaders, school teachers, and schoolchildren glorifying horrific acts of terrorism, wildly celebrating the murders of Israeli mothers, teaching 10-year-olds how to fatally stab Jews, allowing mosques and schools to be staging grounds for acts of terror, or simply making one incendiary accusation after another, such as accusing Israel of being behind the Brussels terror attacks.

None of these stories received any coverage in the New York Times or Washington Post:

• A Palestinian Authority columnist claimed that Israel carried out the terror attacks in Paris and Brussels in order to punish Europe. Muwaffaq Matar, a columnist for the Palestinian Authority daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, wrote: “I do not want to point fingers, but why is it that ISIS’s crimes and massacres in France and Brussels coincided with Europe’s first attempt to liberate itself from Israel’s blackmail and from the [guilt] complex over the persecution of the Jews in Europe? [Why did they coincide] with the European parliaments supporting the Palestinians’ right [to a state], for the first time?” He concluded: “ISIS does not have the ability to strike wherever and however it pleases. Some element or elements have infiltrated it to the core, and are using it as their current tool to take revenge on Europe and rip out its heart” (MEMRI, March 28).

• Ramallah District Governor Laila Ghannam met with the family of one of the murderers of 16-year-old Israeli Ofir Rahum; Ramallah’s Facebook page later praised the killer as a “heroic prisoner” (PMW, March 20).

• The Palestinian Authority’s message on International Women’s Day was that the female terrorist Dalal Mughrabi, who was responsible for murdering 37 Israelis, was “one of the fighting sisters, and it may be that she paved the way so the sisters could continue. She was a source of pride for the Palestinian woman” (PMW, March 10).

• Fatah, which is controlled by “moderate” Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, lavished praise on the murderers of Taylor Force, an American tourist, West Point graduate and Iraq war veteran who was stabbed to death on a trip to Israel with an American university, and numerous other victims who were slashed to death (PMW, March 9).

• Palestinian Authority TV news dubbed Force, a decorated American war hero, a “settler” and hailed his murderer as a “holy martyr” (PMW, March 9).

• Hamas’ Al-Aqsa TV featured two Hamas-affiliated clerics, Yunis Al-Astal and Wael Al-Zard, saying that the Jews were the “enemies of mankind” who “wallow in the shedding of blood” (MEMRI, Feb. 25).

• Hamas bomb maker Yahya Ayyash, whose bombs murdered hundreds of Israeli civilians in suicide bombings on buses and in malls and cafes, was killed in 1996 but is remembered as a hero among Palestinians. In February, Palestinians praised him on social media as “the first to arrange free collective death rides for the Zionists.” Another claimed: “He embarrassed the enemy with his actions, and was the first figure to pave the way to liberation and the arrival in Jerusalem. May his soul rest in Paradise, and may his students endure and be victorious” (PMW, Feb. 12).

• Fatah hailed the three Palestinian terrorists who murdered 19-year-old Israeli police cadet Hadar Cohen as “role models” (PMW, Feb. 4).

The Times and Post also ignored Israeli Arab terrorist Nashat Milhem’s plan to slaughter Israeli children in kindergarten. Milhem, who brutally murdered three Israelis in Tel Aviv on New Year’s Day, was recently discovered to have plotted to enter a Tel Aviv kindergarten and kill the children inside. Coverage of it in the Western media noted that “while The Washington Post chose to write about Hamas’ hacking attack, no mainstream U.S. media outlet, including The New York Times, saw fit to report on a terrorist’s plan to massacre Israeli schoolchildren.”

Milhem’s premeditated plan to slaughter civilians got nothing approaching the attention given to the IDF shooting in the Western media. As we have noted in the past, imagine the headlines if the roles had been reversed, and an Israeli had been discovered to be plotting an attack on Palestinian youngsters. The coverage would have continued for days. Storylines would have included detailed examinations of the Israeli public’s reaction and what the incident meant about the wellbeing of Israeli society.

We are seeing that very dynamic play out in response to the shooting episode.

The irony is acute. Hundreds of Palestinians have brutally murdered innocent Israelis in terrorist attacks, only to be praised as “martyrs” by the Palestinian Authority and Palestinian society, with their families even being paid stipends. But none of this praise and glorification of the Palestinian terrorist attacks — which goes on all the time in Palestinian media and society — draws the attention of the Western media the way this shooting by an IDF soldier has.

Yet we never see anything parallel to these condemnations in Palestinian society when it comes to killing Israelis. Instead, Palestinians pass out candy and celebrate in the streets when Israeli civilians are murdered. But these facts are little known in the West because of the viciously biased reporting of the Times, the Post and the rest of the mainstream media. We rarely see any of the Palestinian glorification of terrorism in the Western media.

This bias has a devastating effect. Ten Democratic Party lawmakers, led by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont), formally requested that the State Department investigate Israel for human rights violations. In a letter explaining their request, they referred to media reports claiming that Israeli forces were torturing and killing Palestinians. Netanyahu responded with a reminder of the truth that has been obscured by the media double standard: “The [IDF] and the Israel Police do not engage in executions. Israel’s soldiers and police officers defend themselves and innocent civilians using the highest moral standards against bloodthirsty terrorists who come to murder them. Where is the concern for the human rights of the many Israelis who’ve been murdered and maimed by these savage terrorists?”

Not in The New York Times or The Washington Post. “This letter,” Netanyahu continued, “should have been addressed instead to those who incite youngsters to commit cruel acts of terrorism.” He is right; but Leahy would never have been able to read about such people in the United States’ leading newspapers.

The American media, led by The New York Times and The Washington Post, is not just grossly negligent and dishonest. It is complicit in Palestinian terrorism when it ignores Palestinian incitement. This indirectly exonerates Palestinian terrorists of all responsibility for their acts.

By ignoring Palestinian culpability for terrorism and deliberately not reporting on the massive Palestinian incitement to carry out terrorism, The Washington Post and The New York Times have essentially become co-conspirators with the Palestinians, letting them get away with murder.

Ash Carter breaks with Obama: ‘We’re prepared to change rules of engagement’ in fight vs. ISIS

November 19, 2015

Ash Carter breaks with Obama: ‘We’re prepared to change rules of engagement’ in fight vs. ISIS, Washington Times

(Please see also, The Obamization of the Military, Pt. 243. How are the rules of engagement actually being changed? — DM)

TURKEY_c0-609-5300-3698_s561x327Defense Secretary Ashton Carter speaks during a news conference at the Pentagon, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2015. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) ** FILE

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter says the U.S. is prepared to change the “rules of engagement” in the fight against the Islamic State terrorist group, pointing to methods like targeting fuel trucks controlled by the terrorist group.

“We’ve reviewed them – we review them all the time,” Mr. Carter said in an interview for MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “Actually, if you look at the data, the thing that most enhances the impact of the air campaign is better and better intelligence. We’re prepared to change rules of engagement. We’ve changed tactics, as we just did in the case of the fuel trucks.”

Mr. Carter said the U.S. has started going after fuel convoys now, in addition to the 3,500 people on the ground in Iraq and air sorties flying “every day.”

“ISIL uses the oil infrastructure as a way to raise money,” he said. “We took out ‘Jihadi John,’ we took out the head of ISIL in Libya, we’re running raids like the one that got Abu Sayyaf.”