Posted tagged ‘Torture’

The West Betrays U.S. Heroes Who Prevented Another 9/11

August 14, 2017

The West Betrays U.S. Heroes Who Prevented Another 9/11, Gatestone InstituteGiulio Meotti, August 14, 2017

“Those who work as spies know the risks from America’s enemies, but they shouldn’t have to worry about politicized retribution from its friends” — The Wall Street Journal.

These officials should have never be prosecuted in a court; they should be protected from such actions. This prosecution is a betrayal of those who worked hard to prevent more massacres and to cripple the infrastructure of jihad.

That is the most important lesson: our spies and officials involved in the war against Islamic terrorism, like those who prevented another 9/11, now fear not only the wrath of the jihadists, but also the witch hunt of our media and judicial system.

One of the most important chapters in the war on terror is being rewritten — with a moral inversion. Islamic terrorists who were arrested and deported have become “liberal causes célèbres“, while agents of the CIA who questioned them are not only being condemned but also financially crushed by punishment and legal bills — for having tried, legally, to save American lives.

Guantanamo Bay has supposedly become “the Gulag of our time“; the psychologists who interrogated the murderer who sawed off Daniel Pearl’s head have been charged with working “for money“; the “black sites” in the Polish and Lithuanian forests have been compared to Nazi concentration camps, and the U.S. jurists and officials who conducted the war on terror have been compared to the Germans hanged in Nuremberg.

“In just a few months, Obama had sent the CIA back to the September 10 culture of risk aversion and timidity that had contributed to the disaster of 9/11”, Bruce Thornton wrote in his book, The Wages of Appeasement. A few examples of Obama’s policy include a directive to release Justice Department memos on the process of vetting interrogation techniques for legality. The attorney general at the time, Eric Holder, appointed a special prosecutor to determine if the CIA officers involved in the interrogation program had been guilty of breaking the law.

A judicial condemnation, however, has begun only now. A federal judge in Spokane, Washington, has opened one of the most important trials in the recent U.S. history. For the first time after September 11, three American citizens involved in interrogating Islamic terrorists have been called to answer to a judge. The New York Times released the video of their testimony. The federal court in Spokane, Washington, heard Bruce Jessen, James Mitchell and Jose Rodriguez testifying on their role in the war on terror. They are among the heroes who prevented another 9/11; now they are on the bench.

“I’ll tell you a story,” Bruce Jessen testified.

“Two Christmases ago, I get a call from the CIA; my grandchildren and my daughter and son-in-law are living with us. You have 15 minutes to get out of your house because ISIS has found someone to come and kill you and your family… Now, those — that isn’t the only threat I’ve received over the years, I’ve received lots of them. And I’m not afraid, and I did my duty and I stood up and I went to war, and I’ll stand up to any of them again, but I don’t want them messing with my family… And when you stick your face in the public eye, you get people like the SSCI and [Senator Dianne] Feinstein and the ACLU and other people who accuse you of things you didn’t do, who out your name, who give them your address, who print articles that are full of crap about you, and it makes it difficult.”

Jose Rodriguez, the former head of the CIA clandestine service, told the court what was at stake:

“George Washington did not face an enemy like Al Qaeda. These are people who want to die as martyrs and see the killing of thousands of innocent men, women, and children as justifiable to promote their cause. Making a few of the worst terrorists on the planet uncomfortable for a few days during their first month of imprisonment is worth it in order to save thousands of lives”.

John Rizzo also testified. In 2002, when George W. Bush signed the executive order in which he argued that the Geneva Convention does not apply to terrorists, Rizzo was an interim legal advisor. “No, I can’t honestly sit here today and say I should have objected to that”, Rizzo said.

Now, Judge Justin L Quackenbush of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington, cleared the way for the case to move to the trial phase, rejecting the psychologists’ lawyers request for summary judgement. “This is a historic day for our clients and all who seek accountability for torture,” ACLU attorney Dror Ladin said in a press release. “The court’s ruling means that for the first time, individuals responsible for the brutal and unlawful CIA torture program will face meaningful legal accountability for what they did”.

These officials should have never be prosecuted in a court; they should be protected from such actions. This prosecution is a betrayal of those who worked hard to prevent more massacres and to cripple the infrastructure of jihad.

Many former CIA directors explained that the program of enhanced interrogation techniques worked extremely well:

“It led to the capture of senior al Qaeda operatives, thereby removing them from the battlefield; it led to the disruption of terrorist plots and prevented mass casualty attacks, saving American and Allied lives; it added enormously to what we knew about al Qaeda as an organization and therefore informed our approaches on how best to attack, thwart and degrade it”.

The CIA claimed the demonstrable successes of the interrogation program: the raid in which Osama bin Laden was killed; the capture of José Padilla, accused of wanting to commit an attack in the United States with a dirty radiological bomb; preventing an attack on the US consulate in Karachi, Pakistan; a second wave of attacks after September 11 with a plan to hijack a plane and crash it into Library Tower in Los Angeles.

Jessen and Mitchell are not the only psychologists now in trouble for their involvement in this program. There are also the military psychologist Morgan BanksStephen Behnke, a former director of the American Psychological Association’s ethics office; Joseph Matarazzo, a former chairperson of the Psychologist Association, who allegedly wrote an opinion for the CIA in which the deprivation of sleep would not constitute “torture”.

One of the most important cases of rendition took place in the Italian city of Milan against Abu Omar; the verdict ended by condemning CIA agents. Robert Seldon Lady, the former head of the CIA in Milan, and involved in the Abu Omar case, was arrested and released in Panama. In a rare interview, the Wall Street Journal wrote:

“Mr. Lady, who had planned to retire and become a security consultant from a farm house he bought with his life savings in Italy’s Piedmont region, received the stiffest sentence — eight years in prison, increased to nine on appeal. Before the case went to trial, Magistrate Armando Spataro sued to seize Mr. Lady’s house and use the proceeds to pay damages to Abu Omar. Mr. Lady fled Italy in 2005 but lost his property. His 30-year marriage, he says, was another casualty”.

Sabrina De Sousa, another CIA agent involved in the Milan rendition, avoided the jail only thanks to being pardoned by the Italian authorities.

The European Court of Human Rights has condemned Macedonia for the rendition of a German citizen. The European judges also condemned Poland for hosting one of the CIA’s secret sites. Spanish judges opened a criminal file against some senior Bush administration officials, including John Yoo and Jay S. Bybee of the Justice Department, and William Haynes, a former senior Pentagon jurist. John Yoo, now a professor at University of California, Berkeley, wrote the 2003 memorandum authorizing the CIA’s interrogation techniques. The German attorney Wolfgang Kaleck filed a criminal complaint against Yoo; Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of the Law School at the California University, asked to prosecute Yoo, who was also sued by José Padilla, a convicted American terrorist.

In 2009, Spanish judges opened a criminal file against some senior Bush administration officials, including John Yoo (pictured) of the Justice Department. Yoo, now a professor at University of California, Berkeley, wrote the 2003 memorandum authorizing the CIA’s interrogation techniques. (Image source: Commonwealth Club/Wikimedia Commons)

Recently, attorneys of the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights (ECCHR) in Berlin, filed a criminal complaint against Gina Haspel, now the CIA’s number-two person under Director Mike Pompeo, and charged her with being involved in directing a secret CIA detention facility near Bangkok, Thailand. Will U.S. officials fear that traveling in Europe might expose them to arrest?

The Wall Street Journal wrote last year, regarding the De Sousa case:

“The threat from terrorism is worse than at any time since 9/11, even as the West has limited its capacity for self-defense… Those who work as spies know the risks from America’s enemies, but they shouldn’t have to worry about politicized retribution from its friends. Sabrina De Sousa’s abandonment by the U.S. government sends a demoralizing message to all who serve in the shadows, even as the war on terror enters a dangerous new phase.”

That is the most important lesson: our brave spies and officials involved in the war against Islamic terrorism, like those who prevented another 9/11, now fear not only the wrath of the jihadists, but also the witch hunt of a Western media and judicial system.

As James E. Mitchell said, by prosecuting what the U.S. and the West have done in the war on terror, “we will be standing on the moral high ground, looking down into a smoking hole that used to be several city blocks”.

Turkey: Systematic Torture, Rape of Political Prisoners

July 24, 2016

Turkey: Systematic Torture, Rape of Political Prisoners, Clarion Project, William Reed, July 24, 2016


Will the diplomats in Brussels who advocate and push for the membership of Turkey in the EU please speak out in defense of political prisoners raped and tortured in Turkish police stations and jails?

Will the United States, which supports and finances Turkey, also turn a blind eye to these abuses?


Following the failed July 15th coup d’état in Turkey, the world witnessed how thousands of Turks dealt with their own Turkish soldiers who put down their arms and surrendered. Pro-government Turks beat, tortured and lynched their own soldiers in the streets – before the eyes of the entire world.

But torturing is nothing new in Turkey. It is an old political tradition. Kurdish political prisoners have for decades been exposed to appalling sexual and physical torture in Turkish jails and police stations.

The day before the coup, human rights organizations in Turkey announced in a press conference that many Kurds who have been recently arrested and jailed in the city of Sanliurfa, or Urfa, have been tortured and raped while in detention. [i]

Atilla Yazar, the head of the Urfa branch of the Human Rights Association (IHD), said that they have received complaints of torture from Urfa since 2015. “The detainees are first taken to the anti-terror branch (TEM) of the Urfa police directorate,” said Yazar. “Then they are taken to a cave. They say that they have been tortured heavily. Five of them are women. And they are still in prison now.”

Eren Keskin, the vice-president of the Human Rights Association (IHD), said, “A long time ago, Tayyip Erdogan, who was then prime minister, said that ‘There would be zero tolerance to torture.’ But I think there is boundless tolerance to torture.”

“The stories we heard from the detainees were horrible,” Keskin continued.

“I have been working in the field of torture for the last 20 years. But I did not hear some of those torture methods even in the 1990s, when torture and rapes were very commonplace.

“We see that torture is a state policy and it is systematic. It is not just Turkish soldiers or police officers who are involved, [but also] the prosecutors who do not question them, the doctors who do no not give them medical reports about torture, and the forensic medicine institute all carry this [torture] out together.”

Keskin explained, “Most of the people we talked to were civilian politicians who are members of the legal Democratic Peoples’ Party (DBP).  A detainee called Mazlum Dagtekin said that there is a cave of torture filled with tools of torture in the town of Ceylanpinar. He said that they [the police] torture people under the control and supervision of the prosecutor. First, they blindfold them. Then they put a sack on their heads. And they blindfold them again on those sacks. Stripping detainees naked is one of their primary methods.

“Mazlum also said: ‘They put my head in a well. They raped me. They stripped me naked. They inserted a nightstick in my anus. They made me sit on an armchair. They tied my feet with construction wires. They shackled my hands to the armchair. They hit my stomach and chest cavity with nightsticks and punches. Later they tied my hands with a wire and made me swing into a well. They urinated on me. One of the police officers took out his penis and told me to lick it. While all of these things were done to me, the prosecutor was there.’

“At night, they took Mazlum outside. They tied his feet and put a gun to his head. Then they gave him the gun and told him to kill himself. Mazlum told us that at that moment he wanted to die so much that he pulled the trigger without thinking about it at all, but the gun was empty. To bring a person to a point where he wants nothing else but to die is the worst of all tortures.

“Five women that we spoke to were exposed to heavy sexual torture,” added Keskin. “All of them were frisked bare-naked. They touched their bodies. They applied methods of torture that I cannot verbalize here. The women do not want us to express these things. For women who are exposed to sexual torture express what they have experienced with much difficulty. Due to the certain understanding of honor that is exposed on us, they are ashamed, scared and timid. We understand them. But we will write what they have told us in our report and present it to the United Nations.

“This is what all the detainees were told. ‘We are a special team. We came here from Ankara for you. We will commit all kinds of torture to make you speak.’”

Keskin also said that they were planning to file a complaint to the Turkish medical association about the doctors involved in rights violations. “When prisoners are brought to the hospital by the Turkish police, the doctors stick their heads in the vehicle and ask ‘Is there anybody hurt in here?’ The police say, ‘No,’ Then the doctors sign a report which states that there was nobody hurt in the vehicle. This is a clear violation.

“The doctors turn a blind eye to torture or they are forced to. For example, Inci Korkmaz, one of the victims we spoke to, had felt faint. They suspected that she was having a heart attack and took her to hospital. The doctor first told the police ‘not to take her back like that.’ But when the police insisted, the doctor gave her an injection and [let the police take] her back. This is against the Hippocratic Oath.

“The Urfa anti-terror branch is a place where people are openly exposed to sexual torture. We need to make a call to the states that Turkey has signed international treaties with since Turkey is openly violating these treaties,” Keskin said.

Currently in Turkey, the minister of justice has given an order forbidding political prisoners from talking to their lawyers. In addition to the numerous Kurdish political prisoners being tortured and grossly abused by the Turkish authorities, there are now thousands who have been arrested in the wake of the failed coup.

They now have nobody to speak for them.

Will the diplomats in Brussels who advocate and push for the membership of Turkey in the EU please speak out in defense of political prisoners raped and tortured in Turkish police stations and jails?

Will the United States, which supports and finances Turkey, also turn a blind eye to these abuses?

U.S., Europe Fund Torture by Palestinian Authority

February 26, 2016

U.S., Europe Fund Torture by Palestinian Authority

by Khaled Abu Toameh February 26, 2016 at 5:00 am

Source: U.S., Europe Fund Torture by Palestinian Authority

  • A report by the Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor documented 1,391 cases of Palestinians arbitrarily arrested by the two Palestinian parties, Fatah and Hamas, in 2015.
  • Systematic torture in Palestinian prisons in the West Bank and Gaza Strip was documented in the report — at least 179 cases of torture in Palestinian Authority (PA) prisons in 2015.
  • The PA security forces are trained and funded by several Western countries, including the US. This establishes a direct line between these Western donors and the arbitrary arrests, torture and human rights violations that have become the norm in PA-controlled prisons and detention centers.
  • The report also revealed that the Palestinian Authority regularly disobeys court orders by refusing to release detainees, showing contempt for its courts and judges.
  • Before our eyes, two police states are being built: one in the West Bank and a second in the Gaza Strip — in the face of talk by international parties of establishing an independent Palestinian state. But the last thing the Palestinians need is another police state.

Palestinians who incite violence against Israel are called Palestinian leaders. Palestinians who beg to differ with Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas or one of his friends are called criminals and can expect to be interrogated and/or imprisoned.

The PA leadership has always clamped down on its critics, including journalists, editors, academics, human rights activists and parliament members. In this regard, the PA and its president show a distinct similarity to the other dictators that run the Arab world.

Like the legendary Japanese monkeys who see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil, the international media regularly turns a blind eye to blatant Palestinian Authority abuses. But here’s a newsflash for them: Say you don’t like Abbas and you face arrest or interrogation on charges of “insulting His Excellency.”

Take, for example, the case of Professor Abdul Sattar Qassem, who teaches Political Science at An-Najah University in Nablus.

Qassem, a long-time critic of President Abbas and the Oslo Accords, was arrested earlier this week by Palestinian security forces on charges of “incitement.” Qassem was arrested on the heels of a television interview in which he stated that those who collaborate with Israel should receive the death penalty, according to the PLO’s “Revolutionary Law.” The Palestinian leadership considered this statement “incitement” against President Abbas and Palestinian security personnel.

Professor Abdul Sattar Qassem (left) stated in a TV interview that those who collaborate with Israel should receive the death penalty. The Palestinian Authority leadership considered this “incitement” against President Mahmoud Abbas (right), and arrested Qassem.

Qassem was released on bail after three days in detention, although a Palestinian court had ordered him remanded in custody for 15 days. It is still unclear whether he will be officially charged and put on trial.

No stranger to Palestinian prison, Qassem has been arrested at least three times in the past few years for publicly criticizing President Abbas and other senior Palestinian officials. His outspokenness has also exposed him to violence: his car was torched while parked in front of his home in Nablus, and he escaped an assassination attempt when unidentified gunmen shot several rounds at him outside this home.

The culprits have never been caught. Palestinian sources say the assailants are unlikely to ever be apprehended. Had the perpetrators posted critical comments about President Abbas on Facebook, however, these sources say that they would have been locked up long ago.

A recent report published by the Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor documented 1,391 cases where Palestinians were arbitrarily arrested by the two Palestinian parties, Fatah and Hamas, in 2015.

The report noted that the bulk of the arrests (1,274) had taken place in the areas controlled by the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank. Among those arrested were 35 Palestinian journalists and civil rights activists, and 476 students and academics.

Cameras and computers were confiscated from the detained journalists before they were interrogated about their work and activities on social media, the report said.

Now let us go to Gaza. How is Hamas doing on this score? Hamas authorities last year arrested “only” 23 journalists and civil rights workers, 24 university students and five teachers and academics.

Thus, the figures show, we might say, some arresting facts: Hamas has a better record than the Western-funded Palestinian Authority when it comes to assaults on public freedoms and human rights violations. The report also revealed that the Palestinian Authority regularly disobeys court orders by refusing to release detainees. In other words, the Palestinian Authority, which repeatedly boasts that it has managed to build an “independent and credible judiciary system” with the help of Western donors, shows contempt for its courts and judges.

Systematic torture — scores of cases — in Palestinian prisons in the West Bank and Gaza Strip was also documented in the report. In 2015, there were at least 179 cases of torture in Palestinian Authority prisons, as opposed to 39 cases in Hamas prisons during the same year.

The Palestinian Authority security forces are trained and funded by several Western countries, including the United States. This establishes a direct line between these Western donors and the arbitrary arrests, torture and human rights violations that have become the norm in Palestinian Authority-controlled prisons and detention centers.

Yet there is silence — until the word “Israel” pops up. Then Western news outlets, including those based in Israel that are tasked with covering Palestinian affairs, go into high gear.

This criminal indifference — one is tempted to say negligence — on the part of the international community permits and even promotes Palestinian Authority and Hamas human rights abuses.

We are witnessing how the two Palestinian parties approach the task of building state institutions. Before our eyes, two police states are being built — one in the West Bank and a second in the Gaza Strip. This is taking place in the face of talk by the same donors and other international parties (at least in relation to the PA) of establishing an independent Palestinian state. But the last thing the Palestinians need is another police state.

President Abbas, who has just entered the 11th year of his four-year term in office, has no cause to be concerned about the human rights violations committed by his security forces. In fact, he has every reason to continue clamping down on his critics. Why should he worry? The international community absolves him of the abuses perpetrated under his rule.

That is why this week Abbas instructed his security forces to launch an investigation into the behavior of a legislator, Dr. Najat Abu Baker. Dr. Abu Baker, it seems, had the temerity to demand an inquiry into the financial practices of a Palestinian cabinet minister.

Soon after she lodged charges of financial wrongdoing, Dr. Abu Baker, an elected member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, was summoned by the Palestinian prosecutor general for interrogation on charges of “slander” and “incitement.” This is quite a way to respect Dr. Abu Baker’s parliamentary immunity.

Dr. Abu Baker’s case is yet a further example of the disregard that the Palestinian Authority shows not only for the judicial system, but also for the legislative body that is meant to serve as a watchdog over the executive branch. But even watchdogs know their owners. By summoning Dr. Abu Baker for interrogation and threatening to arrest her, Abbas is sending a message of deterrence to his detractors, namely that even a member of parliament cannot escape the long arm of the Palestinian security forces.

For now, the international community has some choices. It could continue to close its eyes to the police states being erected with its monies. Alternatively, it could choose a new path: to hold the Palestinian Authority accountable for its actions, including the torture that takes place within its very core. But the West had better hurry up. The PA repression is far from lost on the Palestinians, who are being driven by it into the waiting arms of Hamas and other such groups.

Proper state institutions for the Palestinians is a laudatory goal; what the Palestinians have today are two banana republics.

Khaled Abu Toameh, an award winning journalist, is based in Jerusalem.

Sean Hannity Full One-on-One Interview with Donald Trump (2/18/2016)

February 19, 2016

Sean Hannity Full One-on-One Interview with Donald Trump (2/18/2016), Fox News via You Tube, February 18, 2016

(Trump discusses the Israel – “Palestine” situation and the mess Obama has made beginning at 11:05 during the interview. The rest is very good too. — DM)

The Plight of the Yazidis

February 7, 2015

The Plight of the Yazidis, Front Page Magazine, February 6, 2015

(They are probably doomed unless the relevant U.N. high commissioner decrees that they are endangered by climate change rather than by the forces of “peaceful” Islam. Then Obama and Kerry, who claim that climate change is the greatest threat of all, might help. — DM)


Despite the current focus on ISIS, the ongoing barbarity inflicted against the Yazidis, a group of people who have inhabited Iraq’s mountainous northwestern region for centuries, remains largely below the radar. And while this estimated population of approximately 500,000 has been the target of hatred by Muslims who see them as heretical devil-worshipers, ISIS has upped the ante. While the world largely looks away, a genocidal level of extermination proceeds apace. “Our entire religion is being wiped off the face of the earth,” warned Yazidi leader Vian Dakhil—last August.

Early August was the time the carnage ramped up in earnest. Approximately 40,00 Yazidis, including many women and children, were trapped in nine locations around Mount Sinjar, identified in local legend as the final resting place of Noah’s ark. Sinjar was once home to as many as 300,000 Yazidis, but as ISIS advanced, 130,000 fled north to Dohuk, capital of the Dohuk governate of Iraqi Kurdistan, or to Irbil, the capital of the Kurdistan Region and its largest city. Since last June authorities in Irbil have been forced to deal with one of the largest and most rapid refugee movements in decades. As of now approximately 350,000 Yazidis are encamped around Dohuk.

Those remaining behind faced a terrible choice of death by dehydration, or death at the hands of ISIS, who murdered 500 Yazidis, including 40 children, in an initial killing spree. By October the death total inflicted by ISIS had reached into the thousands. U.N. Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic aptly described what was occurring. “The evidence strongly indicates an attempt to commit genocide,” he said, adding that the only options being given to the Yazidis are “to convert or be killed.”

Not quite. As ISIS has boasted in its propaganda magazine Dabiq, around 300 Yazidi women and girls were abducted, subjected to sexual assault and subsequently sold as slaves to its fighters in Syria. The Islamist terror group considers the women and girls to be “al Sabaya,” defined by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) as “women captured in war.”

The main reason the Yazidis have slipped below the media radar is because they apparently believe President Obama sufficiently addressed the problem last August, when he announced airstrikes aimed at a twofold purpose: protecting U.S. personnel stationed in Erbil, and saving those Yazidis trapped in around Sinjar without food or water. “People are starving. And children are dying of thirst. Meanwhile, ISIL forces below have called for the systematic destruction of the entire Yazidi people, which would constitute genocide,” Obama said at the time. “And when we have the unique capabilities to help avert a massacre, then I believe the United States of America cannot turn a blind eye. We can act, carefully and responsibly, to prevent a potential act of genocide. That’s what we’re doing on that mountain.”

The strikes and humanitarian aid were initially successful in alleviating some of the suffering, and also opened up an escape route allowing many of those trapped to flee. Yet by October, with U.S. attention diverted elsewhere and airstrikes dwindling, ISIS surrounded Mount Sinjar again. More than 10,000 Yazidis were once again trapped, and ISIS reprised its bloody rampage, capturing one mountain village after another, killing the men and selling the women and children into slavery.

Furthermore, the humanitarian airdrops were also halted. Iraqi helicopters were employed to pick up the slack, but they are old and fly only once or twice a week, according to Sameer Karto Babasheikh, the son of the Yazidi Supreme Religious Council leader, who met with a contingent of senior White House and State Department officials that same month to discuss the problem. “Our hostages, children, women, and girls, between 4,000 and 5,000 of them, have been captured by ISIS and sent to other areas. We need help to rescue these hostages,” he explained. “In Mosul, they opened a market to sell Yazidi girls. Some of them ended up in Fallujah, some of them were taken to Saudi Arabia and Raqqa in Syria.”

Kamal Elias, a Yazidi activist who was part of the delegation that came to Washington, put the crisis in far blunter terms. “President Obama promised that they are not going to let ISIS get any more land, that they are not going to let them get another genocide on the Yazidis,” he said. “But this is going to be worse than in August. If ISIS gets to the mountain, all of these people are going to be slaughtered, and then it’s going to take years for the U.S. or anyone else to get them out of the mountain.”

Elias also illuminated another facet of the problem. “Most of the ISIS members are from the towns around ISIS,” he said. “They were our neighbors. We lived with them for hundreds of years. Now all of a sudden they are ISIS. They joined ISIS.”

The animus directed towards the Yazidis spans centuries. “To this day, many Muslims consider them to be devil worshipers,” says Thomas Schmidinger, an expert on Kurdish politics the University of Vienna. “So in the face of religious persecution, Yazidis have concentrated in strongholds located in remote mountain regions,” he adds.

In fact Yazidis whose total population is around 700,000, the vast majority of whom have been concentrated in northern Iraq around Sinjar, are predominantly Kurdish. But they remain religiously distinct from Iraq’s Sunni Kurdish population. Some scholars contend the religion was founded during the 11th century by an Ummayyad sheikh. Others attribute its origins to Sufi leader Adi ibn Musafir, who settled in Kurdistan in the 12th century and founded a community mixing elements of Islam with local beliefs that predated it. The faith combines elements of Zoroastrianism, a 3500 year old monotheistic religion founded by the Prophet Zoroaster in ancient Iran, with elements of Christianity and Islam. Thus Yazidis embrace Christianity’s sacrament of Baptism, Islam’s tenets on circumcision, and Zoroastrianism’s belief that fire must be revered as a manifestation from God.

The devil-worshipping accusations derive from their worship of a fallen angel, Melek Tawwus, or Peacock Angel. Unlike the permanent fall from grace of Satan in the Judeo-Christian tradition, Melek Tawwus is forgiven by God and returned to heaven, becoming a force for good in Yazidism.

Nonetheless, beginning around the late 16th and early 17th centuries, accusations of devil-worship arose because Muslims believe the story of Tawwus Melek resembles the Qur’an’s Shaytan, a rebellious “djinn” (Muslim spirit) who leads men away from goodness.

Unfortunately, goodness is currently in short supply in among the members of the international community. There is no doubt they are aware of the Yazidi’s continuing plight, but they continue to fail those who are facing imminent extermination.

Murad Ismael, a Yazidi activist in the Sinjar Crisis Group, reported on his December journey during which he reached Sinjar accompanied by Peshmerga forces who have seen 999 fighters killed, and 4596 wounded since they began standing against ISIS last June. It was the first time Yazidis had reached Sinjar since the mass exodus last August.

“We did not see any civilians in Sinjar, except for a few Yazidis who had returned there to retrieve some of their personal belongings,” Ismael revealed to Aljazeera America. “For the 150 kilometers to the Mount Sinjar area, all has been abandoned. No sign of life, except for the forces defending the roads.” Ismael also downplayed reports stating Kurdish fighters had re-captured most of Mount Sinjar in December.  “The peshmerga and the Yazidi volunteers did get inside the city of Sinjar.,” he explained. “About three-quarters of the city has been recaptured. However, there are still ISIL (ISIS) snipers. ISIL have been cleared from the northern side of the mountain, but they left behind IEDs. The southern side of the mountain is not safe.”

Ismael also revealed what ISIS left behind. “At least three mass graves have been found,” he said. “Seventy-five bodies have been found. Another mass grave of about 25 or 26 people. I did not get to that location. We saw evidence of destruction. People’s clothes alongside the road. My town, Khanasour, to see how it is now — it’s emotionally overwhelming. Everything’s been burned. All Islamic State banners or writing on the walls. Lots of mass graves, lots of people dead inside the houses. We didn’t look inside.”

Mass grave sightings were confirmed by the Peshmerga four days ago.

The plight of those in the aforementioned refugee camps has been largely ignored as well. Bill Devlin, a co-pastor of the Infinity Bible Church in the Bronx, New York who travelled with Ismael, was appalled. “We visited three camps today, with approximately 5,000 people each,” he said  “They’re living in unfinished buildings, living in the street, living with literally nothing. We’ve been going from house to house of unfinished buildings. No food, no kerosene heaters—it’s beyond belief. Some one million Yazidis are dispersed outside the official camps. The need is critical. The issue is dire.”

Co-traveler Lee Mason, a producer for Cumulus Media, illuminated the details, noting there are three types of camps. The first type consists of tent cities organized by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Yet that organization is belied by dirt streets, no hot water and latrines as much as a half mile away. The second type consists of unofficial camps where people put up tarps or plastic sheeting to protect from the freezing rain. There are dangerous makeshift electricity systems and self-created toilet systems consists of sheds covered with blankets, but no running water. The last group of camps consists of unheated, abandoned buildings with similar makeshift electrical systems.

Last December, Yazidi women who escaped from ISIS detailed their abuse to the BBC. “They said: ‘Yazidis are infidels,” a woman using the pseudonym “Hannan” reported. “Now you will live as Muslims.’ They took many girls for sex. They told us: ‘Forget the life you knew.’” She further reveals that ISIS took the younger girls first and sent many of them to the Syrian city of Raqqa ISIS considers its capitol. Many of women grew so desperate from the abuse they considered suicide a viable alternative. One actually carried it out. “She slashed her wrists,” Hannan revealed “(ISIS) didn’t let us help her. They put us in a room and shut the door. She died. They said: ‘It doesn’t matter, we’ll just dump the body somewhere.’”

Upping the ante on depravity, ISIS has published guidelines on the “proper” use of women as slaves, including a Q&A pamphlet, a video of men awaiting their turn at the slave market, and a statement in Daqib describing the events:

“After capture, the Yazidi women and children were then divided according to Sharia [Islamic law] amongst the fighters of Islamic State who participated in the Sinjar operations…Before Satan sows doubt among the weak-minded and weak-hearted, remember that enslaving the kuffa [infidels] and taking their women as concubines is a firmly-established aspect of Sharia.”

The Yazidis blame several entities for their current predicamen,t including an Iraqi government that has never sufficiently protected them, Kurdish forces who abandoned the fight for Sinjar last August—and an Obama administration whose lack of continuity has given ISIS the impression they can exterminate Yazidis with impunity.

Last month Ismael traveled to Baghdad to plead for help. He met a list of VIPs that included U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Stuart E. Jones, French Ambassador to Iraq François Bartley, Iraqi President Fuad Masum and Minister of Women’s Affairs Bayan Nouri. Al Jazeera America columnist John Batchelor confirms from a separate source that U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power is also aware of the Yazidis’ precarious circumstances. Yet he further notes that she and her staff have “several explanations for why so little has been done for the Yazidis, including the lack of security without U.S. forces in the region.”

No doubt. In the meantime, hundreds of Yazidi women abducted by ISIS remain unaccounted for, children in refugee camps freeze to death, and the Peshmerga remain without the necessary firepower to limit ISIS’s gain, much less defeat them.

Yesterday at the National Prayer Breakfast, Obama once again reminded the world how far he was willing to push the boundaries of moral equivalency in order to spare bloodthirsty Islamists from being singled out. “Unless we get on our high horse and think that this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ,” Obama said. “In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ.”

Those would be the very same Christians, much like the Yazidis, currently being eliminated in the Middle East—even as the same can be said for leadership and morality in the White House.

Obama: Christianity No Different From the Islamic State

February 7, 2015

Obama: Christianity No Different From the Islamic State, Front Page Magazine, February 6, 2015

(Some Christians did awful things during the crusades and inquisition, particularly during the Spanish inquisition. Assume arguendo that they did evil things comparable to those of the Islamic State, its cohorts and other Islamists, as commanded by the Koran. In recent centuries, Christians in general managed to get over it. Islam, however, remains stuck in a former millennium of barbarism and seems to be regressing. So what’s Obama’s point, assuming that he has one? — DM)


As the world reacts with shock and horror at the increasingly savage deeds of the Islamic State (IS)—in this case, the recent immolation of a captive—U.S. President Obama’s response has been one of nonjudgmental relativism.

Speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast on February 5, Obama counseled Americans to get off their “high horse” and remember that Christians have been equally guilty of such atrocities:

Unless we get on our high horse and think this [beheadings, sex-slavery, crucifixion, roasting humans] is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ.

There is so much to be said here.  First, the obvious: the wide gulf between violence and hate “justified in the name of Christ” and violence and hate “justified in the name of Muhammad” is that Christ never justified it, while Muhammad continuously did.

This is not just a theoretic point; it is the very reason that Muslims are still committing savage atrocities.  Every evil act IS commits—whether beheading, crucifying, raping, enslaving, or immolating humans—has precedents in the deeds of Muhammad, that most “perfect” and “moral” man, per Koran 33:21 and 68:4 (see “The Islamic State and Islam” for parallels).

Does Obama know something about Christ—who eschewed violence and told people to love and forgive their enemies—that we don’t?  Perhaps he’s clinging to that solitary verse that academics like Philip Jenkins habitually highlight, that Christ—who “spoke to the multitudes in parables and without a parable spoke not” once said, “I come not to bring peace but a sword.” (Matt. 10:34, 13:34).

Jesus was not commanding violence against non-Christians but rather predicting that Christians will be persecuted, including by family members (as, for example, when a Muslim family slaughters their child for “apostatizing” to Christianity as happens frequently).

Conversely, in its fatwa justifying the burning of the Jordanian captive, the Islamic State cites Muhammad putting out the eyes of some with “heated irons” (he also cut their hands and feet off).  The fatwa also cites Khalid bin al-Walid—the heroic “Sword of Allah”—who burned apostates to death, including one man whose head he set on fire to cook his dinner on.

Nor is the Islamic State alone in burning people.  Recently a “mob accused of burning alive a Christian couple in an industrial kiln in Pakistan allegedly wrapped a pregnant mother in cotton so she would catch fire more easily.”

As for the Islamic “authorities,” Al Azhar—the Islamic world’s oldest and most prestigious university which cohosted Obama’s 2009 “New Beginning” speech—still assigns books that justify every barbarity IS commits, includingburning people alive.  Moreover, Al Azhar—a religious institution concerned with what is and is not Islamic—has called for the cutting off of the hands and feet of IS members, thereby legitimizing such acts according to Islamic law.

On the other hand, does Obama know of some secret document in the halls of the Vatican that calls for amputating, beheading or immolating enemies of Christ to support his religious relativism?

As for the much maligned Crusades, Obama naturally follows the mainstream academic narrative that anachronistically portrays the crusaders as greedy, white, Christian imperialists who decided to conquer peace-loving Muslims in the Middle East.

Again, familiarity with the true sources and causes behind the Crusades shows that they were a response to the very same atrocities being committed by the Islamic State today.  Consider the words of Pope Urban II, spoken almost a millennium ago, and note how well they perfectly mirror IS behavior:

From the confines of Jerusalem and the city of Constantinople a horrible tale has gone forth and very frequently has been brought to our ears, namely, that a race from the kingdom of the Persians [i.e., Muslim Turks] … has invaded the lands of those Christians and has depopulated them by the sword, pillage and fire; it has led away a part of the captives into its own country [as slaves], and a part it has destroyed by cruel tortures; it has either entirely destroyed the churches of God or appropriated them for the rites of its own religion ….  What shall I say of the abominable rape of the women? To speak of it is worse than to be silent….  On whom therefore is the labor of avenging these wrongs and of recovering this territory incumbent, if not upon you? You, upon whom above other nations God has conferred remarkable glory in arms, great courage, bodily activity, and strength…

If the crusaders left their own lands and families to come to the aid of persecuted Christians and to liberate Jerusalem, here is Obama portraying them as no better than the Islamic State—which isn’t surprising considering that, far from helping persecuted Christians, Obama’s policies have significantly worsened their plight.

According to primary historical texts—not the modern day fantasies peddled by the likes of Karen Armstrong, an ex-nun with an axe to grind—Muslim persecution of Christians was indeed a primary impetus for the Crusades.

As for the Inquisition, this too took place in the context of Christendom’s struggle with Islam. (Isn’t it curious that the European nation most associated with the Inquisition, Spain, was also the only nation to be conquered and occupied by Islam for centuries?)  After the Christian reconquest of Spain, Muslims, seen as untrustworthy, were ordered either to convert to Christianity or go back to Africa whence they came.  Countless Muslims feigned conversion by practicing taqiyya and living as moles, always trying to subvert Spain back to Islam.  Hence the extreme measures of the Inquisition—which, either way, find no support in the teachings of Christ.

Conversely, after one of his jihads, Muhammad had a man tortured to death in order to reveal his tribe’s hidden treasure and “married” the same man’s wife hours later.  Unsurprisingly, the woman, Safiya, later confessed that “Of all men, I hated the prophet the most—for he killed my husband, my brother, and my father,” before “marrying” her.

In short, Obama’s claim that there will always be people willing to “hijack religion for their own murderous ends” is patently false when applied to the Islamic State and like organizations and individuals.

Muhammad himself called for the murder of his enemies; he permitted Muslims to feign friendship to his enemies in order to assassinate them; he incited his followers to conquer and plunder non-believers, promising them a sexual paradise if they were martyred; he kept sex slaves and practiced pedophilia with his “child-bride,” Aisha.

He, the prophet of Islam, did everything the Islamic State is doing.

If Muslims are supposed to follow the sunna, or example, of Muhammad, and if Muhammad engaged in and justified every barbarity being committed by the Islamic State and other Muslims—how, exactly, are they “hijacking” Islam?

Such is the simple logic Obama fails to grasp.  Or else he does grasp it—but hopes most Americans don’t.

The Glamor of Evil

February 6, 2015

The Glamor of Evil, Mark Stein on line, February 5, 2015


President Obama’s response was to go to the National Prayer Breakfast and condescendingly advise us – as if it’s some dazzlingly original observation rather than the lamest faculty-lounge relativist bromide – to “remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ“.

[C]ivilization is a fragile and unnatural state of affairs. Droning on about the Crusades and Jim Crow, Obama offers the foreign policy of Oscar Wilde’s cynic: He knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. And so, as the world burns, he, uh, redoubles his, uh, vigilance, uh uh uh… Whatever. That and $16.4 million will buy you coffee and some trauma counseling in Kiev.


On Tuesday the Islamic State released a 22-minute video showing Flight Lieutenant Muath al-Kasasbeh of the Royal Jordanian Air Force being doused in petrol and burned to death. It is an horrific way to die, and Flt Lt al-Kasasbeh showed uncommon bravery, standing stiff and dignified as the flames consumed him. And then he toppled, and the ISIS cameras rolled on, until what was left was charred and shapeless and unrecognizable as human.

King Abdullah’s response to this barbaric act was to execute two ISIS prisoners the following morning, including the evil woman who was part of the cell that blew up the lobby of my favorite hotel in Amman, the Grand Hyatt.

President Obama’s response was to go to the National Prayer Breakfast and condescendingly advise us – as if it’s some dazzlingly original observation rather than the lamest faculty-lounge relativist bromide – to “remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ“.

Gee, thanks. If you’re watching on ISIS premium cable, I’m sure that’s a great consolation when they’re reaching for the scimitar and readying you for your close-up. Oh, and, even by the standards of his usual rote cookie-cutter shoulder-to-shoulder shtick that follows every ISIS beheading of western captives, the President could barely conceal his boredom at having to discuss the immolation of Flt Lt al-Kasasbeh:

Aaand it, I think, will redouble [pause] the vigilance aaand determination on the part of our global coalition to, uh, make sure that they are degraded and ultimately defeated. Ummmm. [Adopting a whimsical look] It also just indicates the degree to which whatever ideology they’re operating off of, it’s bankrupt. [Suppressing a smirk, pivoting to a much more important subject.] We’re here to talk about how to make people healthier and make their lives better.

The lack of passion – the bloodlessness – of Obama’s reaction to atrocity is always striking. He can’t even be bothered pretending that he means it.

I am not a great fan of the Hashemites, and there is great peril for Jordan in getting sucked deeper into a spiral that could quickly consume one of the weakest polities in the region and turn the least-worst Sunni monarchy into merely the latest Obama-era failed-state – after Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, etc. The UAE took advantage of Flt Lt al-Kasasbeh’s capture to cease participation in sorties entirely, and, given the general halfheartedness of Obama’s “coalition”, King Abdullah could have been forgiven for also deciding to head for the exit.

Yet he understood the necessity of action. Obama, by contrast, declares action, and then does nothing. His war against ISIS was supposed to be one in which the US would not put “boots on the ground”, but instead leave that to our allies. The allies have the boots, but they could use some weapons, too. Obama has failed to supply the Kurds or anybody else with what they need to defeat our enemies. It’s becoming what they call a pattern of behavior. Elliott Abrams draws attention to this passage in a New York Times story about Ukraine:

The Russians have sent modern T-80 tanks, whose armor cannot be penetrated by Ukraine’s aging and largely inoperative antitank weapons, along with Grad rockets and other heavy weapons. Russian forces have also used electronic jamming equipment to interfere with the Ukrainians’ communications….

Ukraine has requested arms and equipment, including ammunition, sniper rifles, mortars, grenade launchers, antitank missiles, armored personnel carriers, mobile field hospitals, counterbattery radars and reconnaissance drones.

Hmm. So how much of that shopping list have we responded to? Obama won’t write Ukraine a blank check, but he will write them a blanket check:

The $16.4 million in aid that Mr. Kerry will announce in Kiev is intended to help people trapped by the fighting in Donetsk and Luhansk. The aid will be used to buy basic items like blankets and clothing, along with counseling for traumatized civilians.

Could be worse. He might have thrown in another James Taylor singalong. Then they really would need trauma counselors.

With at least another two years of civilizational retreat to go, we’re gonna need a lot more security blankets, which is good news for whichever Chinese factory makes them.

~As Kyle Smith points out, the video of Flt Lt al-Kasasbeh’s death is an extremely sophisticated and professional production. US news media have declined to run it, because it’s too disturbing, as opposed to, say, Brian Williams’ ripping yarns of derring-do about being shot out of the sky by an RPG. There are really two parallel media structures now: Consumers of Brian Williams-delivered “news” aren’t even aware of the metastasizing of evil. Meanwhile, out there on Twitter and Facebook it’s the hottest recruiting tool on the planet. You’ll recall Hannah Arendt’s tired and misleading coinage “the banality of evil”, derived from her observation of Adolf Eichmann at his trial in Jerusalem. As I wrote last August:

Hitler felt obliged to be somewhat coy about just how final the final solution was. As Eichmann testified at his trial, when typing up the minutes of the Wannsee conference, “How shall I put it? Certain over-plain talk and jargon expressions had to be rendered into office language by me.” Even the Nazis were reluctant to spell it out.

The Germans didn’t have social media, but they had newsreels, and Hitler knew enough not to make genocide available to Pathé or “The March of Time”. He had considerations both domestic and foreign. Pre-Wannsee, in Poland and elsewhere, German troops had been ordered to shoot Jewish prisoners in cold blood, and their commanders reported back to Berlin that too many soldiers had found it sickening and demoralizing. So the purpose of “the final solution” was to make mass murder painless, at least for the perpetrators – more bureaucratic, removed, bloodless.

As for foreign considerations, Germany expected to be treated as a civilized power by its enemies, and that would not have been possible had they been boasting about genocide.

Seventy years on, the Islamic State has slipped free of even these minimal constraints. They advertize their barbarism to the world, because what’s the downside? Let’s say the guys who burned Flt Lt al-Kasasbeh are one day captured by Americans. They can look forward to a decade or two of a soft, pampering sojourn in the US justice system, represented by an A-list dream-team that’ll string things along until the administration figures it’ll cut its losses and ship them to Qatar in exchange for some worthless deserter.

As for the upside, “the banality of evil” may have its appeal for lower-middle-class Teuton bureaucrats, but the glamor of evil is a far more potent and universal brand. The Islamic State has come up with the ultimate social-media campaign: evil goes viral! At some level German conscripts needed to believe they were honorable soldiers in an honorable cause, no different from the British or Americans. But ISIS volunteers are signing up explicitly for the war crimes. The Islamic State burned Flt Lt al-Kasasbeh alive not only to kill him but to inspire the thousands of ISIS fanbois around the globe, like Moussa Coulibaly, the guy who stabbed three French policemen outside a Jewish school in Nice this week.

For many of its beneficiaries, modern western life is bland, undemanding and vaguely unsatisfying. Some seek a greater cause, and turn to climate change or LGBTQWERTY rights. But others want something with a little more red meat to it. Jihad is primal in a way that the stodgy multiculti relativist mush peddled by Obama isn’t. And what the Islamic State is offering is Jihad 2.0, cranking up the blood-lust and rape and sex slavery and head-chopping and depravity in ways that make Osama-era al-Qaeda look like a bunch of pantywaists.

Success breeds success. The success of evil breeds darker evil. And the glamorization of evil breeds ever more of those “recent Muslim converts” and “lone wolves” and “self-radicalized extremists” in the news. That’s a Big Idea – a bigger idea, indeed, than Communism or Nazism. Islam, as we know, means “submission”. But Xtreme-Sports Hyper-Islam, blood-soaked and baying, is also wonderfully liberating, offering the chance for dull-witted, repressed young men to slip free of even the most basic societal restraints. And, when the charms of the open road in Headchoppistan wear thin, your British and Canadian and Australian and European welfare checks will still be waiting for you on the doormat back home.

By contrast, civilization is a fragile and unnatural state of affairs. Droning on about the Crusades and Jim Crow, Obama offers the foreign policy of Oscar Wilde’s cynic: He knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. And so, as the world burns, he, uh, redoubles his, uh, vigilance, uh uh uh… Whatever. That and $16.4 million will buy you coffee and some trauma counseling in Kiev.

ISIS Purifies Islam Through Fire

February 4, 2015

ISIS Purifies Islam Through Fire, Front Page Magazine, February 4, 2015

(The “non-Islamic” Islamic State is not the only Islamic entity that “purifies” by fire. That’s how many “honor killings” are done. When The Islamic Republic of Iran uses nukes against its enemies, it will “purify” them wholesale.– DM)

Islamic purification

Fire is symbolic of the destruction of evil. Symbolically people who are burned alive are human sacrifices that are expiating evil from the community. Tainted victims are purified through fire.

Filming and disseminating the ritual killing strikes fear into the hearts of enemies and attracts new recruits. Similar to an arsonist that is fascinated with fire, disaffected young people will be attracted to this ritual burning. Like moths to a flame.


On Tuesday February 3, 2015 the Islamic State released a video showing Jordanian pilot, Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh, 26 being burned alive while locked in a metal cage. The 22 minute video includes footage of Jordan’s King Abdullah II declaring his support for the anti-ISIS coalition. It shows Lt. Al-Kaseasbeh, who was captured by the Islamic State in December after his aircraft crashed over Syria, being interrogated, paraded in front of heavily armed men, walking towards the cage, and then standing inside the cage wearing an orange jumpsuit that is doused in flammable liquid. The executioner uses a torch to light a trail of gasoline that leads to his feet. Lt. Al-Kasasbeh is engulfed in flames and remains alive for over 1 minute and half and collapses to the floor. Militants pour broken masonry and other debris over the cage which is then flattened with a bulldozer with the body still inside. Despite the surprise and shock of seeing a young man burned alive, this is not a new tactic. In fact it is a common method of ritual murder in Iraq and other countries particularly in honor killings and the murder of Christians. The significant difference is that the Islamic State media films the execution using sophisticated editing and highly choreographed techniques turning the killing into a scripted reality show.

Hundreds of women in the Muslim world have been murdered by fire in honor killings. The murders were often disguised as suicides or accidents. In the first six months of 2007, in Iraqi Kurdistan, 255 women were killed, three-quarters of them by burning. An earlier report cited 366 cases of women who were the victims of so called fire accidents in Dohuk in 2006, up from 289 the year before. In Irbil, there were 576 burn cases since 2003, resulting in 358 deaths. In 2006 in Sulaimaniyah, Iraq there were 400 cases of women burned. In Tunisia in May 2014 a father burned his 13 year old daughter to death for walking home with a boy. In October 2013 a 15 year old Yemeni girl was burned to death by her father for communicating with her fiancé. In March 2009, a sixteen year old Muslim girl suspected of having a relationship with a boy was burned to death by four male neighbors in her village in Ghaziabad, North India. They came to the girl’s house and demanded to know why the young man frequently visited her, and then the men beat her, doused her with kerosene and set her on fire. There are numerous more examples of women burned alive. This form of punishment is not just reserved for women. In April 2011 three men were set on fire in Iraq for being gay. A video of that incident is easily accessible online. In June 2008, the Taliban burned three truck drivers of the Turi tribe alive for supplying the Pakistan Armed Forces. There have been numerous reports of Christians burned alive by Islamist jihadists. In November 2014 a Christian couple in Pakistan Sajjad Maseeh, 27, and his wife Shama Bibi, 24, were burned alive in a brick furnace after it was rumored that they had burned verses from the Quran.”Bibi, a mother of four who was four months pregnant, was wearing an outfit that initially didn’t burn…… The mob removed her from over the kiln and wrapped her up in cotton to make sure the garments would be set alight.” These incidents are rarely reported by the mainstream media and were difficult for most people to comprehend as real until ISIS started filming documentaries of their ritual murders.

Fire is symbolic of the destruction of evil. Symbolically people who are burned alive are human sacrifices that are expiating evil from the community. Tainted victims are purified through fire. Fire is considered a powerful transformer of the negative to the positive. Because of such properties, fire is commonly found in purification rites throughout the world. In other cultures polluted persons may be required to walk around, jump over, or jump through fire. Historically, burning a person to death was reserved for the most threating evil, such as heresy or witchcraft and considered an extreme form of purification. In the context of honor killing the use of fire is not only symbolic but practical. Practical in Iraq because most of the homes do not have electricity so every house has a large supply of oil which makes it easier to conceal honor killings under the guise of suicide or kitchen accidents. In the context of the murder of Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh fire is an Islamic purification ritual that serves vengeance and restores honor and purity to the community of believers.

Islamist jihadists from different movements, countries, sects, and factions all emphasize the need to cleanse Islam of its impurities. Al Qaeda’s ideological belief is the purification of Islam through violent struggle. Bin Laden and Al-Zawahiri have continually called on supporters to purify Muslim holy lands of infidels, un-Islamic beliefs, and practices. The Islamic State cleanses Islam of its impurities while protecting its territory in the same manner as Mexican cartels, using brutal tactics that are justified as vengeance.

The title of the video, Healing the Believers’ Chests, is a quote from the Quran: “Fight them, and Allah will punish them by your hands, cover them with shame, help you over them, heal the breasts of Believers.” (Qur’an 9:14). It was reported to mean ‘giving them pleasure’ – interpreted as a reference to achieving revenge. That is one interpretation, however healing is symbolic of purification, the title Healing the Believers’ Chests can be understood as cleansing the community of the contamination of impurity. Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh’s alleged crimes symbolically unleashed an epidemic of contagious evil. The function of the burning ritual is a communal act of expiation, expelling the contagious evil of an infidel enemy through fire. Having ISIS fighters participate and watch makes it a communal sacrificial ritual. Ritualizing the violence justifies it and makes it sacred. Once the transgressor is ritually killed the impurity is removed, the evil has been expelled, taboo has been ameliorated and justice is served. The body is immediately buried under the earth, another purifying element, restoring honor and purity.

Filming and disseminating the ritual killing strikes fear into the hearts of enemies and attracts new recruits. Similar to an arsonist that is fascinated with fire, disaffected young people will be attracted to this ritual burning. Like moths to a flame.

Are Liberals Actually Admitting Islamic Terrorists Exist?!?

January 30, 2015

Are Liberals Actually Admitting Islamic Terrorists Exist?!? PJ Media Trifecta via You Tube, January 29, 2015

(The phrase “literal Islam” is an excellent substitute for “radical Islam.” Literal readings of the Koran and other Islamic “holy” texts support and demand what so called “radical Islamic extremists” do. Perhaps Obama and others who claim that Islam is “the religion of peace” should be labeled “extremist” and/or “radical”  because they — rather than the Islamic State, et al — pervert the basic teachings of Islam. They apparently want us to believe, all evidence to the contrary notwithstanding, that Islam is just another peaceful religion much like others and is therefore not a problem for secular societies. — DM)

A thought experiment about Islam

January 15, 2015

A thought experiment about Islam, Dan Miller’s Blog, January 15, 2015

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

A religion which blesses and encourages the slaughter of those who offend it or its “prophet” should be condemned, not praised, unless and until it stops doing both. 

On January 14th, I posted an article titled Obama plans to restrain media offensiveness to Islam. As a thought experiment, this less than obviously relevant cartoon appeared at the top:

Islamic pig

I considered the cartoon offensive and hope that everyone else did too. It might depict Mohamed, or it might not. Beyond vague descriptions, likely of questionable value, we have little information about Mohamed’s physical appearance. The cartoon could depict any obese human male wearing a turban. The same is true of other cartoons purporting to depict Mohamed in various poses.

Had a similar cartoon shown instead a Roman Catholic priest or a rabbi on a roasting spit, with a giant pencil extending into his anus and thence through his body and mouth, present day Christians, Jews and those of most other world religions, as well as those of no religion, would quite likely be offended; far less because of the religious significance of the victim than because we do not do that sort of thing to people. We would not on either account murder the cartoonist. Many Muslims might well consider the cartoon funny and approve of what they consider an appropriate consequence of being Jewish or Christian.

As far as I am aware, no world religion other than Islam worships, and seeks to have its followers emulate, a “prophet” or saint who condoned and demanded the killing of those who mocked or otherwise offended him. Mohamed did. Neither Jesus nor Moses did. Nor, as far as I am aware, did any prophet or saint of any other current world religion.

Other Mohamed cartoons of which I am aware do not show him being killed or tortured. For example this cartoon, which inspired the vicious animosity of many Muslims, merely depicts him with a bomb in his turban and gazing with hatred at someone or some thing. It does not depict him being tortured or killed.


Rather than consider it offensive, I consider it a humorous way of depicting one (of the many) barbaric things done by Muslims in the name, and with the blessing, of their religion. Current day non-Muslims also use bombs and some of the same weapons. They use more advanced weapons as well. However, they do not generally do it in the name and with the blessings of their religions because of what they perceive as insults to those religions. That is a significant difference.

Modern cultures should not seek to prevent the publication of cartoons presenting Mohamed, or anyone else, in an unfavorable light. Nor should they seek to prevent cartoons of the objectionable type I posted on January 14th. They can also generate controversy and, hopefully, peaceful discussion. A cartoon of the sort suggested above, depicting a Roman Catholic priest or Jewish rabbi instead of Mohamed, probably would generate nothing more than peaceful controversy, aside from the pleasure of some Muslims.

If cartoons cause bad people to kill those who create or publish them, all of the subsequent adverse consequences should befall those who kill, not those who would create or publish more cartoons.Obama is intent upon imposing adverse consequences on the latter, while claiming that those who kill or attempt to kill in the name of Allah act on behalf of no religion. He would, and would have the rest of us, shield the murderers’ coreligionist supporters even from our displeasure. Obama is a disgrace to civilized humanity.

ISIS scared