Iran Wants More Nuke Concessions as Talks Hit Critical Stage

AP

AP

Washington Free Beacon, by Adam Kredo, March 30, 2015:

LAUSANNE, Switzerland—Iranian negotiators are becoming rigid and unmoving in their stance on a range of key nuclear issues in talks, according to multiple sources familiar with the negotiations who said Tehran is angling to elicit as many concessions as possible from the United States as the talks reach a critical stage ahead of the looming March 31 deadline.

Iran is pushing for major relief from economic sanctions and the ability to continue sensitive research and development on the nuclear and weapons fronts, according to sources quoted in the Iranian state-controlled press on Sunday.

The Iranian side is said to be digging in its heels over these issues as U.S. diplomats rush to finalize a tentative agreement ahead of a self-imposed March 31 deadline.

“Sanctions and research and development are the areas where Iran and the G5+1 still have differences,” one source close to the Iranian diplomatic team was quoted as telling Fars News on Sunday.

Western sources familiar with the U.S. stance confirmed the sticking points and told the Washington Free Beacon that the pressure from Iran is likely to force the Americans to offer more concessions on these fronts than have previously been on the table.

“The Iranians are again outplaying the Americans,” said one source in Europe familiar with the negotiations. “They know they’ll have to give up certain things eventually. So they’re digging in their heels on issues that mean everything and preparing to give ground on relatively minor issues—but not yet, and not until they see how much more the Americans are willing to give.”

Previous concessions by the United States appear to have motivated Iran to push harder on issues such as the possible military dimensions of its nuclear program, as well as continued work on advanced centrifuges and increased sanctions relief, according to a second American source apprised of the demands being set forth.

“Iran has successfully dragged the administration toward their positions to attain massive concessions, and, sensing that kind of weakness, they are seeking to press their advantage to gain further ground on critical points,” according to the source, who added that on the sanctions relief front, Iran is seeking a rollback “without dismantling anything.”

Javad Zarif, Iran’s foreign minister and chief negotiator, hinted at this position following a daylong round of intense talks with Western powers on Saturday.

“In negotiations, both sides must show flexibility. We have, and are ready to make a good deal for all,” Zarif tweeted. “We await our counterparts’ readiness.”

Observers on the ground also raised their eyebrows when a meeting between Zarif and representatives of world powers scheduled for Sunday afternoon did not occur. Following reports thatZarif would not appear, the meeting was nixed, according to U.S. officials.

Iranian diplomats have pushed back in harsh terms against reports that they may agree to ship Tehran’s stockpiles of enriched uranium to Russia. One member of the Iranian negotiating team who spoke to the state-controlled Fars news agency called these reports an attempt to “disrupt” the talks.

“Releasing such reports by the western media is in line with media hype to disrupt the trend of the negotiations which is, of course, a futile attempt,” the Iranian negotiator was quoted as telling Fars on Sunday.

Iranian attempts to change key U.S. demands about the scope and size of its nuclear program come after American diplomats offered a range of new concessions last week aimed at softening Tehran’s stance.

Those concessions included rolling back demands that Iran be forced to disclose the full range of its nuclear activities at the outset of a nuclear deal and allowing it to run nuclear centrifuges at a fortified underground facility that is immune from air attacks.

Iran is now pushing to scale down the time limits of any agreement, according to the Associated Press. Iran is seeking to be allowed to ramp up its nuclear program after a 10-year period.

“The Iranians have a 100 percent record of getting the Americans to accept their key positions on centrifuges, heavy water, and ballistic missiles,” said the Europe-based source. “They think the Americans want a deal more than they do. By all appearances, they’re right.”

Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Germany’s foreign minister, warned on Sunday that there could be “further crisis in these negotiations” in the coming days, according to Reuters.

Meanwhile, Secretary of State John Kerry, when asked about the prospects of reaching a deal during a stop in a Swiss chocolate shop, responded “inshallah,” which is Arabic for “God willing.”

Also see:

Wilders speaks in Vienna, calls again for a halt to Muslim immigration to the West

Refugee Resettlement Watch, by Ann Corcoran, March 30, 2015:

There is one brave political leader shouting from the roof tops across Europe that citizens must speak up and demand a halt to the Hijrah, the migration of Muslims to the West, whose goal is simply-put: to destroy the West from within.

From (appropriately) the Gates of Vienna blog (Geert Wilders speech in Vienna last week):

Geert Wilders of the Dutch Party for Freedom and Heinz-Christian Strache of the Austrian Freedom Party.

In his speech (held in German — the full English text has been posted here), Wilders stressed that the threat of Islamization is by no means being stopped by ostrich-like tactics of the leaders of the European Union, but is actually proceeding at a frightening pace. Wilders quoted statistics about the proliferation of Salafist Islamic organisations, about the number of Muslims supporting violence against non-Muslims, and the threat by the Islamic State to place large numbers of terrorists among asylum seekers entering Europe.

For these reasons and more, Geert Wilders demands that immigration from Islamic countries be halted immediately, that no more mosques should be built, and that we must take control of what is being taught in Islamic schools.

Islam cannot be reformed, he stressed, and for the simple reason that we cannot separate Islam from the Koran, neither can we take Muhammad out of Islam. Therefore there can never be a moderate Islam, Wilders said in his speech.

Wilders is steadfast that our Western culture, based on Christianity, Judaism and Humanism, is categorically superior to the Islamic culture. In the interest of everyone, immigrants should adopt our values, not the other way around.

For those who want to join ISIS:  Let them go!***

In the current confrontation with the Islamic State and the problem of those wishing to leave their countries to join it, he has one thing to say: “Let them go, but never let them return.” Take away their passport and citizenship. Once these young people have been radicalized, no amount of intervention or counselling is going to change their minds. So rather bid them goodbye and good riddance, for the West is not their home.

Time is running out and it is up to everyone to speak up!

His resistance against Islamization, mass immigration, lying media (Lügenpresse) and hostile EU elites cannot be left to politicians alone. Wilders emphasizes that preserving our liberties is a responsibility for every citizen because, as he says, “time is running out for the West.”

Visit Gates of Vienna for more and for links.

By the way, my little booklet written for the Center for Security Policy is being reprinted with a forward and some small changes to the format, so look for the newest edition which should be out soon.   It will also have a slightly different title:  ‘Refugee Resettlement and the Hijrah to America.’

***Just this morning we see news that five Dutch Nationals were apprehended on their way through Turkey to join ISIS.  Wilders is right! We are raising jihadists in our immigrant communities (and paying for their welfare!).  Then when these five are returned to the Netherlands, as they surely will, they will still be in the care of the Dutch taxpayers while in prison.

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Press Conference Geert Wilders Vienna Austria March 27 2015

Published on Mar 27, 2015 by Vlad Tepes

Geert Wilders, the leader of the Party for Freedom (Partij voor de Vrijheid, PVV) in the Netherlands paid a visit to Vienna on March 27, 2015. He met with Heinz-Christian Strache, his counterpart in the Austrian Freedom Party (Freiheitliche Partei Österreichs, FPÖ).

This is footage is from an introductory press conference that was held by Mr. Strache and Mr. Wilders in the Austrian parliament before Mr. Wilders gave a speech in the Hofburg.

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ESW interviews Geert VIenna 1080

INFORMATION: Enemy of Islamic Supremacy

youtube-muslim-650_0

Published on Mar 29, 2015 by Eric Allen Bell

When the power of information spread about Islam, about it’s barbaric practices, censorship and plans for world domination – when that information is more powerful than the Islamic birth rate, we will save civilization as we know it. And if we do not spread this information effectively, the world will take a giant step backwards, into an Islamic dark age. Information is the enemy of Islamic supremacy. Spread it far and spread it wide. Spread it like Napalm. The Information Age will be the Death of Islam.

Recommended reading:

The Collapse of Obama’s Geo-Political Equilibrium in the Middle East

Yemen President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, left, meets with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi at Sharm El=Shaik Summit , March 27, 2015. Source: AP/MENA

Yemen President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, left, meets with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi at Sharm El=Shaik Summit , March 27, 2015. Source: AP/MENA

NER, By Jerry Gordon, March 29, 2015:

This weekend, less than 72 hours before the deadline for P5+1 political framework for Iran’s nuclear program, President Obama’s “offshore balancing” act in the Middle East collapsed. In a January 27, 2014 New Yorkerinterview with editor David Remnick President Obama revealed:

It would be profoundly in the interest of citizens throughout the region if Sunnis and Shiites weren’t intending to kill each other … And although it would not solve the entire problem, if we were able to get Iran to operate in a responsible fashion – not funding terrorist organizations, not trying to stir up sectarian discontent in other countries, and not developing a nuclear weapon – you could see an equilibrium developing between Sunni, or predominantly Sunni, Gulf states and Iran in which there is competition, perhaps suspicion, but not an active or proxy warfare.

His naive  paradigm  of  a geo-political  equilibrium between Shia Iran and Sunni Arabs led by Saudi Arabia foundered with the dramatic intervention by the Saudi Air Force on Wednesday  March 25, 2015 attacking Houthi rebels in northern Yemen , the capital, Sana’a  and targets near Aden.  Operation “determination storm” has begun.  The Saudis gave less than 1 hour notice to the Pentagon and the White House of the launch of the air campaign.  The Administration wasn’t consulted. That effrontery to the leader of the free world was in evidence at the 26th Summit of the Arab League in the Egyptian resort of Sharm El-Shaik. Abed-Rabbo Mansour Hadi, The ousted US- backed President of Yemen, who had fled from Aden to Saudi Arabia, accused the Houthi of being “stooges” for Iran. He refused any offer of a cease fire while the Saudis and Emirati air units continue attacking Houthi forces.  Iran warned the Saudi and Emirate allies of “bloodshed,” if attacks continue.  The Saudi have mobilized 150,000 ground forces for possible action. The US may provide aerial refueling, bombs and air search and rescue for downed pilots as they did for two Saudi pilots on Thursday.

In a statement released today, Secretary General of the Arab League Nabil Al-Araby said   the Arab states would “join ranks and look into taking pre-emptive and defensive arrangements to maintain the Arab national security.”  The Declaration went on to point out:

 the  “conflict between the concept of a modern state and destructive projects that detract the idea of a national state and employ the ethnic, religious and sectarian variation in bloody conflicts, sponsored by external parties.” It cited recent developments in Yemen and the slide the country almost fell into as a flagrant example of these challenges and stressed the dire need for “necessary measures to counter them.”

The Washington Post reported   Arab leaders had effectively announced a “joint military force to intervene in neighboring states grappling with armed insurgencies.”

David P. Goldman in an Asia Times column, “The Middle Eastern Metternichs of Riyadh, noted the stunning assertion of the Saudi leadership in the confrontation with Iran over the US policy collapse in the Middle East and failures in Yemen:

A premise of the “realist” view that American policy in the region should shift towards Iran was that the Saudi monarchy would collapse and Sunni power along with it. All of us underestimated the Saudis.

Now the Saudis have emerged at the top of a Sunni coalition against Iran–limited for the moment to the Houthi insurgency in Yemen, to be sure, but nonetheless the most impressive piece of diplomacy in the Sunni world since Nasser, and perhaps in modern times. That attributes a lot of importance to a coalition assembled for a minor matter in a small country, but it may be the start of something important: the self-assertion of the Sunni world in response to the collapse of American regional power, the threat of Sunni jihadist insurgencies, and the Shi’ite bid for regional hegemony.

There was more drama in Lausanne, Switzerland, when an Iranian journalist Amir Hossein Motaghi, a former election aide to Islamic Republic President Rouhani defected. The UK Telegraph reported Motaghi saying: “The US negotiating team is mainly there to speak on Iran’s behalf with other members of the 5+1 countries and convince them of a deal.” Meanwhile Secretary of State Kerry and the US team are endeavoring to have the P5+1 approve a verbal outline of a political framework with the intransigent Iranians, who demand immediate lifting of financial sanctions while denying compliance with IAEA requests for background information on past military application developments.

These developments gave rise to further criticism by Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu who warned  at a Sunday   cabinet meeting that:

 Iran is trying to “conquer the entire Middle East” as the West appears close to signing a pending nuclear deal with Israel’s arch-enemy.

“This deal, as it appears to be emerging, bears out all of our fears, and even more than that,” Netanyahu told his cabinet in Jerusalem, according to Reuters.

Doubtless, Netanyahu will have more to say to US House Speaker John Boehner who travels to Jerusalem this week for a previously arranged meeting with the Israeli Prime Minister in the midst of cobbling together a ruling majority following his victory in the March 17th, Knesset elections.

The failure of a US supported state in Yemen adds to the growing shadow of Iranian Hegemony over four Arab capitals in the Levant; Beirut, Damascus, Baghdad and now Sana’a.  Should the Saudi and Gulf emirates air attacks not succeed in halting the Iran-backed Houthi conquest of the remaining stronghold of Aden, then Iran may control a major international geo-resource choke hold on the Red Sea with significant economic repercussions.  The prospect of a Shia Sunni sectarian war in the Middle East fuels the apocalyptic end time’s vision of chaos of the Iranian Shia Mahdists  are seeking to arouse the moribund Twelfth Imam from his slumber at the bottom of the holy well in the holy city of Qum hard by the underground uranium enrichment cascade hall of Fordow.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, elected by the Assembly of Experts  to fulfill that  bizarre Islamic obligation, is on the verge of achieving the ultimate symbol of chaos – becoming a nuclear threshold state courtesy of the looming  P5+1 political framework that may be announced on March 31st. With Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, ISIS cells, the vanquishing of US counterterrorism in the region, Iran has achieved its goal of fomenting chaos to bring about end times.   As night follows day, Sectarian war between Sunni Arab states and Shia Mahdmen in Tehran could erupt.  All while the Administration in Washington abandons Israel surrounded by Iranian proxies, Hezbollah, Hamas and Sunni Salafist Islamic State seeking its destruction.  Is this the legacy that President Obama wants to leave behind when he leaves the White House in January 2017?  If it is, then his pursuit of an accommodation with an Iran equipped with a stockpile of nuclear weapons and nuclear warhead tipped Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles amounts to colossal appeasement and “faithless execution” of his oath of office as Commander in Chief to protect America from all enemies, foreign and domestic.

This weekend the President was in Florida playing golf  in Palm City, Florida with a Halliburton Director and the Houston Astros owner while his global equilibrium went up in flames. So much for his feeling the pain of the middle class.   Stay tuned for further developments.

***

Fox News Exclusive: Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn (Ret.) Interviewed by Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday

***

Israel on Iran deal: “The world has gone crazy…”

Shock claim: Why Obama refused to help fight Boko Haram

2091508155CSP, (Originally published by WorldNetDaily)

Allegations are mounting that the Obama administration withheld weapons and intelligence support from Nigeria’s fight against Boko Haram in an effort to boost the chances of the Muslim candidate for president, who is a client of the political firm founded by key Obama strategist David Axelrod.

Nigerians this weekend are deciding a very competitive race between incumbent Christian President Dr. Ebele Goodluck Jonathan and retired Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, who ruled as dictator there from 1983 until 1985, when he was removed through a coup. Buhari has previously vowed to institute Shariah law in the Muslim-dominated parts of the country if elected.

With the guidance of Axelrod’s firm, Buhari has tamped down talk of Shariah nearing election day and even added a Pentecostal Christian as his running mate.

Boko Haram is a radical Islamist terrorist group that recently pledged allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS. In recent years, Boko Haram has slaughtered entire villages, burned countless churches and targeted Christians and moderate Muslims for death. It received global attention last year for abducting nearly 300 Nigerian schoolgirls.

The Obama-Axelrod connection to the Nigerian elections and its impact on U.S. policy toward Boko Haram is laid out in a detailed piece by James Simpson for Accuracy in Media.

Simpson said the Nigerians are thoroughly convinced Obama’s actions are rooted in politics.

“Nigerians overwhelmingly, at least the ones that I talk to and the articles I’ve been able to access, believe that the U.S. deliberately withheld military aid to the Nigerian president because David Axelrod’s group, AKPD, is consulting his Muslim opponent in the upcoming elections,” said Simpson.

According to Simpson, the Nigerians are most upset over their requests being denied for Cobra attack helicopters.

Listen to the WND/Radio America interview with James Simpson.

Gaffney said it isn’t hard to see a pattern developing in how this administration approaches foreign elections. “It seems the Obama administration has withheld intelligence,” said Center for Security Policy President Frank Gaffney. “It seems it has withheld training. It’s found various pretexts, but (the fact it has also withheld) some of the arms that could be very, very decisively used against this odious terrorist organization … really raises a host of questions that I don’t think have been satisfactorily answered by this administration.”

Listen to the WND/Radio America interview with Frank Gaffney.

“This may sound like deja vu all over again,” said Gaffney, who likens U.S. involvement in Nigeria’s presidential elections to what America just witnessed in Israel’s parliamentary elections.

“He has, as he had in Israel, a political operative engaged in helping effect, in a way that is clearly meddling in the internal affairs of a foreign government and a friendly, sovereign foreign government at that,” Gaffney said. “It rebounds to the benefit, in this case it would appear to the financial benefit of his friend and adviser, David Axelrod. That has translated into efforts to support the candidacy of General Buhari.”

Like President Jonathan, Gen. Buhari is also vowing to exterminate Boko Haram. So how could Obama administration policy impact the campaign?

“Clearly, Goodluck Jonathan’s re-election has been made more difficult by the appearance that he’s not doing enough to defeat Boko Haram,” he said.

While Gaffney believes Obama’s denial of meaningful assistance to Nigeria reflects either a desire to see Buhari get elected or simply to help Axelrod’s client win, there are more official reasons given for the lack of support.

“One is that the administration has found fault with the human rights record of the Nigerian military,” said Gaffney, who noted that the other public concern rests with the Obama cultural agenda.

“There are laws on the books of Nigeria, adopted by a sovereign nation through its normal processes, that they consider to be untoward, unacceptable, homophobic, whatever you want to call it, toward people who are lesbians, gays, transgenders, bisexuals and so on,” he explained.

Simpson reports that Secretary of State John Kerry added fuel to the fire by suggesting the U.S. may re-evaluate the selling of arms and sharing of intelligence after the elections.

“The whole thing is a joke. We provided military aid to Uganda and they have a bad human rights record as well. We’ve provided military aid to al Qaida-liked groups in Libya who are now joining ISIS. The whole thing is ludicrous,” said Simpson.

Despite very little U.S. assistance, Nigeria is starting to make significant strides against Boko Haram. Forty towns have recently been liberated, at least 500 Boko Haram members have been killed and many of the terrorists are retreating to the jungle in the border regions near Niger, Chad and Cameroon.

The Nigerians say it’s because they finally got help – from Moscow.

“They are having an impact but they claim it’s because finally they had to turn around and get their arms from Russia. They got Russian Hind attack helicopters and some other heavy duty military equipment, troop carriers and [armored personnel carriers] and things like that. So they’ve been able to take the fight to the enemy,” said Simpson.

Another major issue at work is the Obama administration’s push for a “gay” rights agenda throughout the world and Nigeria recently moved decisively in the opposite direction.

Fifteen months ago, Nigeria enacted laws that criminalize homosexual behavior and strictly forbids “gay marriage.” Simpson says a public display of affection between homosexuals could draw imprisonment of 10 years or more.

That is not sitting well with the Obama administration.

“The gay rights agenda is detested throughout much of Africa. Seventy percent of African nations have laws outlawing homosexuality. This particularly harsh law was passed in December 2013 and the United States and other western nations spoke out against it,” said Simpson.

The diplomatic friction over the Obama administration’s “gay” rights agenda may well be a key factor in America’s refusal to provide more help against Boko Haram and in Obama’s desire to see a new president in Nigeria.

“Obama, in sort of veiled threats, said that he would withhold aid if they didn’t repeal that law. The Nigerians basically told them to get lost. ‘We’re going to do what we want. You don’t have any right to impose your morality on us,”’ said Simpson, who says the Jonathan campaign alleges that Buhari has secretly promised the Obama administration that he will work to repeal the law if elected.

Gaffney believes some concerns about laws addressing sexual orientation may be warranted, but said he has no “dog in that particular fight” and believes regional and U.S. security interests suggest the administration ought to be pursuing a far different course.

“We do have a profoundly important stake in the larger question of whether Nigeria continues to slide into chaos, into the orbit of these jihadists,” he said. “Oil, the strategic resources and position and population of that country are put into serious jeopardy as a result of these calculations.”

Also see:

The U.S. Is Providing Air Cover for Ethnic Cleansing in Iraq

464763530_iraq2michaelweissBy Michael Weiss and Michael Pregent:

American warplanes have begun bombing the Islamic State-held Iraqi city of Tikrit in order to bail out the embattled, stalled ground campaign launched by Baghdad and Tehran two weeks ago. This operation, billed as “revenge” for the Islamic State (IS) massacre of 1,700 Shiite soldiers at Camp Speicher last June, was launched without any consultation with Washington and was meant to be over by now, three weeks after much triumphalism by the Iraqi government about how swiftly the terrorist redoubt in Saddam Hussein’s hometown was going to be retaken.

U.S. officials have variously estimated that either 23,000 or 30,000 “pro-government” forces were marshaled for the job, of which only slender minority were actual Iraqi soldiers. The rest consisted of a consortium of Shiite militia groups operating under the banner of Hashd al-Shaabi, or the Population Mobilization Units (PMU), which was assembled in answer to afatwah issued by Iraq’s revered Shiite cleric Ayatollah Ali Sistani in June 2014 following ISIS’s blitzkrieg through northern Iraq. To give you a sense of the force disparity, the PMUs are said to command 120,000 fighters, whereas the Iraqi Army has only got 48,000 troops.

Against this impressive array of paramilitaries, a mere 400 to 1,000 IS fighters have managed to hold their ground in Tikrit, driving major combat operations to a halt. This is because the Islamic State is resorting to exactly the kinds of lethal insurgency tactics which al Qaeda in Iraq (its earlier incarnation) used against the more professional and better-equipped U.S. forces. BuzzFeed’s Mike Giglio has ably documented the extent to which IS has relied upon improvised explosive devices, and just how sophisticated these have been. Even skilled explosive ordnance disposal teams — many guided by Iranian specialists — are being ripped apart by what one termed the “hidden enemy” in Tikrit.

Because IS controls hundreds of square miles of terrain in Iraq, it has an unknown number of bomb manufacturing plants, and because it knows the terrain so well, it’s been able to booby-trap houses and roads. Even Shiite prayer beads left lying on the ground are thought to be rigged to explosives. One Kurdish official told Giglio that the Kurdish Peshmerga fighters alone have “defused or detonated more than 6,000 IEDs along their 650-mile front with ISIS since the war began in August.”

The toll this has taken on the militias is extraordinary. Cemetery workers in Najaf told the Washington Post that as many as 60 corpses are arriving per day. Former Defense Intelligence Agency officer Derek Harvey tweeted last week that an Iraqi Shiite source told him the number of militia war dead from the Tikrit offensive so far may be as high as 6,000. So the militias’ triumphalism, much of it no doubt manufactured by Iran’s propaganda machine, proved to be misplaced. Jeffrey White, another former DIA analyst now at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, notes “there’s a failure of will on the part of the militias and government forces. They just didn’t have the sufficient desire and determination to take the fight forward given the casualties they’ve been sustaining.”

So now, the same Iraqi government which earlier dismissed the need for U.S. airpower had to put in an eleventh-hour request for it, lest an easy victory descend into embarrassing folly. But the past few months ought to have shown that even indirectly relying on Iranian agents to conduct a credible ground war against Sunni extremists was always a lousy idea for three reasons: those agents hate the United States and have threatened to attack its interest in Iraq; they’re guilty of IS-style atrocities themselves; and they’re lousy at fighting an entrenched jihadist insurgency.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Martin Dempsey told Congress on March 3: “What we are watching carefully is whether the militias — they call themselves the popular mobilization forces — whether when they recapture lost territory, whether they engage in acts of retribution and ethnic cleansing.” He needn’t watch any longer. They are engaging in exactly that.

The crimes of war

On March 10, the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released a comprehensive study of human rights violations committed by both IS and pro-Iraqi forces. The Islamic State, OHCHR concluded, has likely committed genocide against the Yazidis, a ethno-religious minority in Iraq, in a catalogue of war crimes and crimes against humanity that include gang-rape and sexual slavery. But OHCHR’s language is equally unambiguous in condemning the other side on the battlefield: “Throughout the summer of 2014,” the report noted, “[PMUs], other volunteers and [Shiite] militia moved from their southern heartlands towards [Islamic State]-controlled areas in central and northern Iraq. While their military campaign against the group gained ground, the militias seem to operate with total impunity, leaving a trail of death and destruction in their wake.” [Italics added.]

Sunni villages in Amerli and Suleiman Bek, in the Salah ad-Din province, have been looted or destroyed by militiamen operating on the specious assumption that all inhabitants once ruled by IS must be IS sympathizers or collaborators. Human Rights Watch has also lately discovered that the “liberation” of Amerli last October — another PMU/Iranian-led endeavor, only this one abetted by U.S. airstrikes in the early stages — was characterized by wide-scale abuses including the looting and burning of homes and business of Sunni residents of villages surrounding Amerli. The apparent aim was ethnic cleansing. Human Rights Watch concluded, from witness accounts, that “building destruction in at least 47 predominantly Sunni villages was methodical and driven by revenge and intended to alter the demographic composition of Iraq’s traditionally diverse provinces of Salah al-Din and Kirkuk.”

Sunnis weren’t the only demographic subjected to collective punishment. A 21-year-old Shiite Turkmen from the Yengija village was “burned with cigarettes and tied to a ceiling fan” by militants of Saraya Tala’a al-Khorasani, another Iran-backed militia. He told Human Rights Watch: “They kept saying, ‘You are ISIS,’ and I kept denying it. They were beating me randomly on my face, head, shoulders using water pipes and the butts of their weapons…. They went to have lunch and then came back and beat us for an hour and half. Later that night they asked me if I was Shia or Sunni. I told them I was Shia Turkoman and they ordered me to prove it by praying the Shia way…. They kept me for nine days.”

This account tracks with a mountain of social media-propagated video and photographic evidence showing that Iraq’s Shiite militias are behaving rather like the Islamic State — beheading and torturing people they assail as quislings, and then exhibiting these atrocities as a means of recruitment. More worrying, a six-month investigation by ABC News has found that U.S.-trained Iraqi Security Force personnel are also guilty of anti-Sunni pogroms, with officers from Iraq’s Special Forces shown in one video accusing an unarmed teenaged boy of being a shooter (a charge the boy denies) before opening fire on him.

Looking the other way

The Obama administration’s counterterrorism-driven policy for the Middle East, and a quietly pursued diplomatic reconciliation with Iran, has resulted in America’s diminishment of grave war crimes committed by Iran’s clients and proxies, and the problem is hardly just confined to Iraq. In Syria, for instance, the National Defense Force, a conglomerate of militias trained and equipped by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps-Quds Force (IRGC) — a U.S.-designated terrorist entity — has been accused by the Syrian Network for Human Rights and the Euro-Mid Observer for Human Rights, of “[burning] at least 81 people to death, including 46 civilians; 18 children, 7 women, and 35 of the armed opposition fighters,” along with other pro-Assad forces. The State Department has offered condolences to Iran’s President Hasan Rouhani on the death of his mother; to date, it has not said a word about the immolation of these Syrians at the hands of a Quds Force-built guerrilla army.

All of which raises the question: Does the United States have a “common interest,” as Secretary of State John Kerry phrased it, with a regime in Tehran whose proxies are currently burning people alive in their houses, playing soccer with severed human heads, and ethnically cleansing and razing whole villages to the ground?

Read more at FP

Why Yemen Matters

by Daniel Pipes
Washington Times
March 28, 2015

The Middle East witnessed something radically new two days ago, when the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia responded to a plea by Yemen’s president and led a 10-country coalition to intervene in the air and on the ground in the country. “Operation Decisive Storm” prompts many reflections:

Saudi and Egypt in alliance: Half a century ago, Riyadh and Cairo were active in a Yemen war, but then they supported opposing sides, respectively the status-quo forces and the revolutionaries. Their now being allies points to continuity in Saudia along with profound changes in Egypt.

Arabic-speakers getting their act together: Through Israel’s early decades, Arabs dreamt of uniting militarily against it but the realities of infighting and rivalries smashed every such hope. Even on the three occasions (1948-49, 1967, 1973) when they did join forces, they did so at cross purposes and ineffectively. How striking, then that finally they should coalesce not against Israel but against Iran. This implicitly points to their understanding that the Islamic Republic of Iran poses a real threat, whereas anti-Zionism amounts to mere indulgence. It also points to panic and the need to take action resulting from a stark American retreat.

Arab leaders have a long history of meeting but not cooperating. From the right: King Hussein of Jordan, Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt, Yasir Arafat of the PLO, and Muammar Qaddafi of Libya in September 1970.

Yemen at the center of attention: Yemen played a peripheral role in the Bible, in the rise of Islam, and in modern times; it’s never been the focus of world concern – until suddenly now. Yemen resembles other once-marginal countries – the Koreas, Cuba, the Vietnams, Afghanistan – which out of nowhere became the focus of global concern.

The Middle East cold war went hot: The Iranian and Saudi regimes have headed dueling blocs for about a decade. They did combat as the U.S. and Soviet governments once did – via contending ideologies, espionage, aid, trade, and covert action. On March 26, that cold war went hot, where it’s likely long to remain.

Can the Saudi-led coalition win? Highly unlikely, as these are rookies taking on Iran’s battle-hardened allies in a forbidding terrain.

Islamists dominate: The leaders of both blocs share much: both aspire universally to apply the sacred law of Islam (the Shari’a), both despise infidels, and both turned faith into ideology. Their falling out confirms Islamism as the Middle East’s only game, permitting its proponents the luxury to fight each other.

The Turkey-Qatar-Muslim Brotherhood alliance in decline: A third alliance of Sunni revisionists somewhere between the Shi’i revolutionaries and the Sunni status-quotians has been active during recent years in many countries – Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Libya. But now, in part thanks to diplomacy initiated by the brand-new King Salman of Saudi Arabia, its members are gravitating toward their Sunni co-religionists.

King Salman of Saudi Arabia has done something unprecedented in putting together a military coalition.

Isolated Iran: Yes, a belligerent Tehran now boasts of dominating four Arab capitals (Baghdad, Damascus, Beirut, Sana’a) but that’s also its problem: abrupt Iranian gains have many in the region (including such previously friendly states as Pakistan and Sudan) fearing Iran.

Sidelining the Arab-Israeli conflict: If the Obama administration and European leaders remain obsessed with Palestinians, seeing them as key to the region, regional players have far more urgent priorities. Not only does Israel hardly concern them but the Jewish state serves as a tacit auxiliary of the Saudi-led bloc. Does this change mark a long-term shift in Arab attitudes toward Israel? Probably not; when the Iran crisis fades, expect attention to return to the Palestinians and Israel, as it always does.

American policy in disarray: Middle East hands rightly scoffed in 2009 when Barack Obama and his fellow naïfs expected that by leaving Iraq, smiling at Tehran, and trying harder at Arab-Israeli negotiations they would fix the region, permitting a “pivot” to East Asia. Instead, the incompetents squatting atop the U.S. government cannot keep up with fast-moving, adverse events, many of its own creation (anarchy in Libya, tensions with traditional allies, a more bellicose Iran).

Impact on a deal with Iran: Although Washington has folded on many positions in negotiations with Iran and done the mullah’s regime many favors (for example, not listing it or its Hizbullah ally as terrorist), it drew a line in Yemen, offering the anti-Iran coalition some support. Will Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamene’i now stomp out of the talks? Highly unlikely, for the deal offered him is too sweet to turn down.

American diplomats meet again with their Iranian counterparts to capitulate on yet another difference.

In sum, Salman’s skilled diplomacy and his readiness to use force in Yemen responds to the deadly combination of Arab anarchy, Iranian aggression, and Obama weakness in a way that will shape the region for years.

Mr. Pipes (DanielPipes.org, @DanielPipes) is president of the Middle East Forum. © 2015 by Daniel Pipes. All rights reserved.

Also see:

Bill Whittle: American Deserter

bb_0Truth Revolt, by Bill Whittle, March 29, 2015:

The first time most of us heard the name Bowe Bergdahl was when President Obama stood with his parents in the Rose Garden, announcing that after having been captured in Afghanistan in June, 2009 he was going to be released – traded, as it turns out, for five top-level terrorists being held in Guantanamo Bay.

It’s funny how hindsight works. I’ve known several military families in my day, but Bergdahl’s parents – his father especially – not only did not strike me as a military dad: he struck me as man who had never put on a tie in his life.

Well, it turns out he wasn’t really like the military dads I have come to know because his son wasn’t really like the military men I have come to know. Prior to his deployment to Afghanistan, Bergdahl reportedly told fellow specialist Jason Fry, “If this deployment is lame, I’m just going to walk off into the mountains of Pakistan.”

If you talk to them, or even watch a documentary like Restrepo, or Korengal — where I was both amazed and embarrassed that the US Army could leave our troops that far out on a limb in such appalling conditions and in constant threat of being overrun – but even in those documentaries, in the bitching and complaining that has always been a point of pride for soldiers since the throwing of the first rock, you would not hear American soldiers say things like:

…life is way too short to care for the damnation of others, as well as to spend it helping fools with their ideas that are wrong. I have seen their ideas and I am ashamed to even be american…The system is wrong. I am ashamed to be an american. And the title of US soldier is just the lie of fools. … The US army is the biggest joke the world has to laugh at. It is the army of liars, backstabbers, fools, and bullies… I am sorry for everything. The horror that is america is disgusting.

OBEY YOUR CONSCIENCE! replied Bergdahl’s father after receiving his son’s final email, quoted from above. And so Bowe Bergdahl, having decided the deployment was lame, walked off into the mountains towards Pakistan.

And that would be treason, and desertion, and all the rest.

But…

When Barack Obama came under fire for his mishandling of the horrific treatment of US veterans at the VA in Phoenix, and in fact throughout the entire system, he did what he usually did: deploy Susan Rice to come up with some optics. So we, as a people, were treated to the sight of the Compassionate Leader, who had, after monumental effort and at great personal cost, moved mountains to make sure that No Man Was Left Behind. We were told this action was in keeping with the highest traditions of the US Military, but we were not told that the Man Was Left Behind because he decided to walk away from his post and join the Islamic enemy. Six men, however, were left behind, and their names are, from left to right and top to bottom:

SSG Michael Murphrey, PFC Morris Walker, SSG Clayton Bowen, PFC Matthew Martinek, 2LT Darryn Andrews and SSG Kurt Curtiss.

article-soldier-0602

I am asking you to stop reading for a moment – just stop reading, and don’t just glance at that composite picture of these men’s faces. Just stop for a moment, and look at them, as I did, and realize that the mothers and fathers of these six men did not get to stand in glory next to Barack Obama at the White House, or walk arm-in-arm with him down the portico. Those parents suffered – they suffer today and will suffer for every day of their lives – because Bowe Bergdhal thought the Afghan deployment was lame and walked off towards the mountains. Those parents are suffering today because when Bowe Bergdhal took his walk, they – and many, many others – were sent to look for him. And they were killed, while Bowe Bergdahl lived, because while they too probably thought the deployment was lame they stayed and did their duty to their unit, their Army, their parents, their country, it’s President and most of all they fulfilled their duty to themselves.

Once Bergdahl had been repatriated, and the rumors of his desertion started to gain traction, we were told by the President’s Press Secretary how Bergdahl had served with distinction. This was a lie, and they knew it was a lie. Recently, Bergdahl’s platoon mate, Jordan Vaugh, told Fox News on camera how they had been sent out no less than fifty times trying to rescue this deserter, not only putting even more men at risk but seriously disrupting the tempo of offensive operations. He told about the disbelief and disgust at being forced to sign non-disclosure agreements in the wake of the controversy. He told about the shock and dismay and destruction of morale caused by the repeated attempts to risk his life, and those of his fellow soldiers, to recover this deserter and the shame he felt, not at America’s mission in Afghanistan but rather at the cover-up being pushed onto him and his fellow soldiers by the Obama administration.

Because the American Deserter, you see, cares not for the men that serve in uniform. He cares not for the US Army; he does in fact find them to be bullies and fools. The American Deserter hates this country, is deeply ashamed of it, and he always has been. The American Deserter is a narcissist who can never, ever be wrong. The American Deserter traded one psychologically damaged traitor for five key terrorists; the American Deserter watched men die on a rooftop in Benghazi and did nothing; the American Deserter traded the security and future of Poland and Eastern Europe to the Russians in return for political gains and he did it on TV; the American Deserter exchanges the most sensitive National Security information with his Secretary of State on non-secure servers with knowledge that it is both illegal and potentially crippling and he does not care. It is abundantly clear – and it has been abundantly clear for some time – that the American Deserter considers this deployment lame and he has walked off toward the golf courses in the Hamptons or the beaches in Hawaii where he can be found practically daily: bathed in his own glory, responsible to no one and nothing, and following dictates of his own diseased conscience while better men than him die to keep him from having to face justice.

Obama’s Mideast ‘free fall’

Barack Obama faces a slew of Middle East crises that some call the worst in a generation, as new chaos from Yemen to Iraq — along with deteriorating U.S.-Israeli relations — is confounding the president’s efforts to stabilize the region and strike a nuclear deal with Iran.

The meltdown has Obama officials defending their management of a region that some call impossible to control, even as critics say U.S. policies there are partly to blame for the spreading anarchy.

“If there’s one lesson this administration has learned, from President Obama’s 2009 Cairo speech through the Arab Spring, it’s that when it comes to this region, nothing happens in a linear way — and precious little is actually about us, which is a hard reality to accept,” said a senior State Department official.

Not everyone is so forgiving. “We’re in a goddamn free fall here,” said James Jeffrey, who served as Obama’s ambassador to Iraq and was a top national security aide in the George W. Bush White House.

For years, members of the Obama team have grappled with the chaotic aftermath of the Arab Spring. But of late they have been repeatedly caught off-guard, raising new questions about America’s ability to manage the dangerous region.

Obama officials were surprised earlier this month, for instance, when the Iraqi government joined with Iranian-backed militias to mount a sudden offensive aimed at freeing the city of Tikrit from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant. Nor did they foresee the swift rise of the Iranian-backed rebels who toppled Yemen’s U.S.-friendly government and disrupted a crucial U.S. counterterrorism mission against Al Qaeda there.

Both situations took dramatic new turns this week. The U.S. announced its support for a Saudi-led coalition of 10 Sunni Arab nations that began bombing the Houthis, while Egypt threatened to send ground troops — a move that could initiate the worst intra-Arab war in decades.

Meanwhile, the U.S. launched airstrikes against ISIL in Tikrit after originally insisting it would sit out that offensive. U.S. officials had hoped to avoid coordination with Shiite militias under the direct control of Iranian commanders in the country.

Now the U.S. is in the strange position of fighting ISIL alongside Iran at the same time it backs the Sunni campaign against Iran’s allies in Yemen — even as Secretary of State John Kerry hopes to seal a nuclear deal with Iran in Switzerland within days.

On Thursday, Iran’s foreign minister, who has been meeting with Secretary of State John Kerry in Switzerland to discuss Iran’s nuclear program, demanded an immediate halt to the Yemen incursion.

At the same time, civil war rages on in Syria. On Thursday, Robert Menendez, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, sent Obama a letter urging him to respond to charges that the regime of Bashar Assad — a close ally of Tehran — has used chlorine gas against civilians. In late 2013, Obama threatened to punish Assad with airstrikes after his forces deployed nerve gas.

Also in chaos is Libya, home to two dueling governments — and another target of cross-border Arab military action when Egypt and the United Arab Emirates conducted airstrikes against alleged Islamic extremists there in August. That action also reportedly surprised U.S. officials.

It all amounts to a far cry from Obama’s optimistic vision when he came to office suggesting that by withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq and focusing on Israeli-Palestinian peace he could stabilize, if not completely calm, the long-troubled area.

Instead, Obama looks poised to leave an even more dangerous and unpredictable region than the one he inherited in 2009.

“The mood here is that we really are at a crisis point that is unprecedented in recent memory,” said Suzanne Maloney, a senior fellow in the Middle East policy center at the Brookings Institution, who spoke from the Qatari capital of Doha. “This feels more intense and more complicated” than past moments of turmoil, Maloney added.

Read more at Politico

Do read the article Crash Position linked to in the featured graphic…h/t Sundance

Obama’s Dismal Legacy

president_obama_17968_4302-e1397247634412by Justin O. Smith:

America will point to this juncture in history one day, and it will note that this was the critical moment when the Grand Fool, Barack Obama, and his Court Jester, John Kerry, failed to recognize the greatest threat to America and the world in the 21st century. Ignoring all sound reason and stark warnings from numerous U.S. and world leaders, such as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s March 4th speech before Congress, they are proceeding with a bad agreement that does not prevent the growth and perfection of a broad Iranian nuclear weapons delivery system, and they are paving a path to nuclear weapons for the Revolutionary Guard and a rogue regime and state-sponsor of terrorism.

Iran’s nuclear weapons program has long been evident. Its heavy water nuclear facility at Arak is one proof, since this type of facility is only good for making weapons grade plutonium. Iran’s high explosive components for implosion-type nuclear weapons are made at Parchin

Parchin has been mentioned numerous times by the U.K., France and Germany in these ongoing negotiations, from which Iran hopes to gain relief from all economic sanctions. However, Iran has refused to allow any further inspection of Parchin, since 2005, and it now says further inspections are out of the question.

Any arms deals most usually demands verification of one’s compliance. And due to Iran’s resistance to allow for proper verification measures, most of America is asking, “Why are we negotiating with Iran at all at this point?”

While Iran cannot be trusted, there is a liar leading the U.S., who wants to side-step the Senate’s advise and consent role, even though in 2013 Obama stated that “the people’s representatives must be invested in what America does abroad.” Look where the U.S. stands now and compare it to Obama’s March 6, 2012 statement: “… My policy is to prevent [Iran] from getting a nuclear weapon, because if they get a nuclear weapon that could trigger an arms race in the region … it could potentially fall into the hands of terrorists.”

Shortly after Netanyahu’s speech in the halls of Congress, Saudi Prince Turki al-Faisal Saud warned, in a BBC interview, that any terms granting Iran nuclear power would result in a massive wide-open arms race across the Middle East. Similar concerns are currently being voiced by Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and many other nations.

Iran is already in flagrant violation of past U.N. Security Council resolutions, and yet they are proceeding in their efforts to develop nuclear weapons and inter-continental ballistic missiles. And contrary to the purpose of dissuading Iran from this course, the U.S. and other nations now seem unwilling to stop Iran from going nuclear, as they concede Iran’s right to retain its current capabilities.

The price-tag on Obama’s dismal legacy is a high one, since Ayatollah Khamenei demands immediate relief from all sanctions. That means more money in Iranian coffers and an increased ability to assist the likes of Hezbollah, the Houthi rebels in Yemen and murderous Shia militia in Iraq. Enabling this terrorist regime to reshape the Middle East through force of arms, slaughtering innocents and nuclear blackmail certainly promises peace will elude the world throughout this century.

Well within their rights, duty and authority to serve and protect the United States, Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, ranking committee member Eliot Engel (D-NY) and 365 House members sent a bipartisan letter to Obama, dated March 20th, that specified in part: “… Congress must be convinced that [the agreement’s] terms foreclose any pathway to a [nuclear] bomb, and only then will Congress be able to consider permanent sanctions relief … Finally … it is critical that we also consider Iran’s destabilizing role in the region.”

Similarly, just days previous, Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark) and 46 other Republican senators published an “open letter” to Iran and its leaders. It essentially stated that any agreement with President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry could be rescinded by any successor and was basically not worth the paper it is written on, without Senate approval.

Nothing has changed in the thirty-five years after Iran took U.S. diplomats hostage for 444 days or after the Marine barracks bombing in Beirut in 1983. As noted by Holocaust survivor and Nobel Peace Laureate Elie Wiesel on February 14, 2015: “The Ayatollah Khamenei has been as clear as his predecessor in declaring his goal __ ‘the annihilation and destruction’ of Israel. He is bent on acquiring the weapons needed to make good on his deadly promise.: And, just weeks ago, as Khamenei rallied his country to endorse the nuclear negotiations, he joined the crowd in their chants of “Death to America,”

During his 39 minute speech before the U.S. Congress, Benjamin Netanyahu told lawmakers and visitors, “This deal won’t be a farewell to arms, it will be a farewell to arms control … a countdown to a potential nuclear nightmare.” At one point, Bibi turned to the 86 year old Holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel, who sat with Sara Netanyahu in the Congressional gallery, and poignantly continued, “I wish I could promise You, Elie, that the lessons of history have been learned. I can only urge the leaders of the world not to repeat the mistakes of the past.”

Much in the manner that Czechoslovakia was betrayed at the 1938 Munich Conference, Israel is being betrayed by Obama’s executive agreement with Iran, and Israel is now left alone to mount a military operation that can destroy Iran’s nuclear facilities. Israel can accomplish this, just as it did at Osirak in 1981, but a much more thorough job would result from U.S. and European assistance. A pre-emptive strike is the only answer to a nuclear armed Iran that most certainly will bring the world to the brink of destruction.

America is nearing a terrible milestone in its history. It must not refuse to stand against Iran’s naked aggression, just as it initially refused to stand against the Nazis, or history will weigh our nation in the balance and find it wanting. America must recover its moral character and rebuke Obama’s bitter fruit of appeasement, Considerably less danger exists in a preemptive strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities than going forward with a bitter fruit that only promises a dark future filled with exponentially larger conflagrations, massive wars and chaos.

To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran

26Bolton-master675NYT, By John Bolton, March 26, 2015:

FOR years, experts worried that the Middle East would face an uncontrollable nuclear-arms race if Iran ever acquired weapons capability. Given the region’s political, religious and ethnic conflicts, the logic is straightforward.

As in other nuclear proliferation cases like India, Pakistan and North Korea, America and the West were guilty of inattention when they should have been vigilant. But failing to act in the past is no excuse for making the same mistakes now. All presidents enter office facing the cumulative effects of their predecessors’ decisions. But each is responsible for what happens on his watch. President Obama’s approach on Iran has brought a bad situation to the brink of catastrophe.

In theory, comprehensive international sanctions, rigorously enforced and universally adhered to, might have broken the back of Iran’s nuclear program. But the sanctions imposed have not met those criteria. Naturally, Tehran wants to be free of them, but the president’s own director of National Intelligence testified in 2014 that they had not stopped Iran’s progressing its nuclear program. There is now widespread acknowledgment that the rosy 2007 National Intelligence Estimate, which judged that Iran’s weapons program was halted in 2003, was an embarrassment, little more than wishful thinking.

Even absent palpable proof, like a nuclear test, Iran’s steady progress toward nuclear weapons has long been evident. Now the arms race has begun: Neighboring countries are moving forward, driven by fears that Mr. Obama’s diplomacy is fostering a nuclear Iran. Saudi Arabia, keystone of the oil-producing monarchies, has long been expected to move first. No way would the Sunni Saudis allow the Shiite Persians to outpace them in the quest for dominance within Islam and Middle Eastern geopolitical hegemony. Because of reports of early Saudi funding, analysts have long believed that Saudi Arabia has an option to obtain nuclear weapons from Pakistan, allowing it to become a nuclear-weapons state overnight. Egypt and Turkey, both with imperial legacies and modern aspirations, and similarly distrustful of Tehran, would be right behind.

Ironically perhaps, Israel’s nuclear weapons have not triggered an arms race. Other states in the region understood — even if they couldn’t admit it publicly — that Israel’s nukes were intended as a deterrent, not as an offensive measure.

Iran is a different story. Extensive progress in uranium enrichment and plutonium reprocessing reveal its ambitions. Saudi, Egyptian and Turkish interests are complex and conflicting, but faced with Iran’s threat, all have concluded that nuclear weapons are essential.

The former Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Turki al-Faisal, said recently, “whatever comes out of these talks, we will want the same.” He added, “if Iran has the ability to enrich uranium to whatever level, it’s not just Saudi Arabia that’s going to ask for that.” Obviously, the Saudis, Turkey and Egypt will not be issuing news releases trumpeting their intentions. But the evidence is accumulating that they have quickened their pace toward developing weapons.

The inescapable conclusion is that Iran will not negotiate away its nuclear program. Nor will sanctions block its building a broad and deep weapons infrastructure. The inconvenient truth is that only military action like Israel’s 1981 attack on Saddam Hussein’s Osirak reactor in Iraq or its 2007 destruction of a Syrian reactor, designed and built by North Korea, can accomplish what is required. Time is terribly short, but a strike can still succeed.

Rendering inoperable the Natanz and Fordow uranium-enrichment installations and the Arak heavy-water production facility and reactor would be priorities. So, too, would be the little-noticed but critical uranium-conversion facility at Isfahan. An attack need not destroy all of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure, but by breaking key links in the nuclear-fuel cycle, it could set back its program by three to five years. The United States could do a thorough job of destruction, but Israel alone can do what’s necessary. Such action should be combined with vigorous American support for Iran’s opposition, aimed at regime change in Tehran.

Mr. Obama’s fascination with an Iranian nuclear deal always had an air of unreality. But by ignoring the strategic implications of such diplomacy, these talks have triggered a potential wave of nuclear programs. The president’s biggest legacy could be a thoroughly nuclear-weaponized Middle East.

John R. Bolton, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, was the United States ambassador to the United Nations from August 2005 to December 2006.

Also see:

Bowe Bergdahl, Deserter

Bergdahls-Dad-offers-Muslim-prayerFrontpage, by Robert Spencer, March 26, 2015:

U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl has been charged with desertion for leaving his unit in Afghanistan and joining up with the Taliban. It’s about time. After months of stonewalling as the evidence that Bergdahl was a deserter mounted ever higher, U.S. officials could ignore it no longer.

Much of that evidence has been known for years, and more of it came out last year, when Obama traded five seasoned, battle-hardened jihadis back to the Taliban in exchange for Bergdahl. Former infantry officer Nathan Bradley Bethea, who served with Bergdahl in Afghanistan, wrote in the Daily Beast that Bergdahl was “a deserter, and soldiers from his own unit died trying to track him down.” Refuting reports that Bergdahl got separated from his unit while on patrol, Bethea declared: “Make no mistake: Bergdahl did not ‘lag behind on a patrol,’ as was cited in news reports at the time. There was no patrol that night. Bergdahl was relieved from guard duty, and instead of going to sleep, he fled the outpost on foot. He deserted. I’ve talked to members of Bergdahl’s platoon—including the last Americans to see him before his capture. I’ve reviewed the relevant documents. That’s what happened.”

Bethea’s account is in full accord with the Taliban’s 2010 claim that Bergdahl had converted to Islam and was teaching bomb-making to its jihadists. There is no reason to take anything that Taliban spokesmen say at face value, but secret documents revealed Thursday afternoon corroborate the claim. According to one of these documents, dated August 23, 2012, “conditions for Bergdahl have greatly relaxed since the time of the escape. Bergdahl has converted to Islam and now describes himself as a mujahid. Bergdahl enjoys a modicum of freedom, and engages in target practice with the local mujahedeen, firing AK47s. Bergdahl is even allowed to carry a loaded gun on occasion. Bergdahl plays soccer with his guards and  bounds around the pitch like a mad man. He appears to be well and happy, and has a noticeable habit of laughing frequently and saying ‘Salaam’ repeatedly.”

The soldier’s father, Robert Bergdahl, also appears to be a convert to Islam, as during the ceremony with Obama in the Rose Garden announcing the exchange, he proclaimed: “Bismillah al-rahman al-rahim” – the phrase, “In the name of Allah, the compassionate, the merciful,” which is the heading of 113 of the Qur’an’s 114 chapters. (Journalist Neil Munro noted in the Daily Caller that “although Bergdahl quoted the Quran verse, the White House transcript did not translate it or even include the Islamic prayer. Instead, the transcript simply said Bergdahl spoke in the Pasho language, which is the language of the Pushtun tribe, which forms the vast majority of the Taliban force. In fact, ‘Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim’ is Arabic.” The lavishly-bearded Robert Bergdahl has also called for the release of the jihadists in Guantanamo and has implied that American troops are killing Afghan children in a tweet he concluded with “ameen,” the Arabic form of “amen.”)

What’s more, an Associated Press report stated that “a Pentagon investigation concluded in 2010 that Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl walked away from his unit, and after an initial flurry of searching the military decided not to exert extraordinary efforts to rescue him, according to a former senior defense official who was involved in the matter.” This official said that the evidence that Bergdahl had deserted was “incontrovertible.”

Fox News reported that Bergdahl — “both in his final stretch of active duty in Afghanistan and then, too, during his time when he lived among the Taliban — has been thoroughly investigated by the U.S. intelligence community and is the subject of ‘a major classified file.’ In conveying as much, the Defense Department source confirmed to Fox News that many within the intelligence community harbor serious outstanding concerns not only that Bergdahl may have been a deserter but that he may have been an active collaborator with the enemy.”

Former Army Sgt. Evan Buetow, who served with Bergdahl and was present the night he disappeared, says flatly: “Bergdahl is a deserter, and he’s not a hero. He needs to answer for what he did.” Even worse, Buetow recounted that days after Bergdahl vanished from the U.S. base, there were reports that he was in a nearby village looking for someone who spoke English, so that he could establish communications with the Taliban. Soon afterward, Buetow recalled, “IEDs started going off directly under the trucks. They were getting perfect hits every time. Their ambushes were very calculated, very methodical.”

Bergdahl knew where the trucks would be going and when; said Buetow: “We were incredibly worried” that the Taliban’s “prisoner of war” was passing this information on to his captors in order to help them place their bombs most effectively.

Fox News also reported that according to “sources who had debriefed two former members of Bergdahl’s unit,” the deserter “left behind a note the night he left base in which he expressed disillusionment with the Army and being an American and suggested that he wanted to renounce his American citizenship and go find the Taliban.” According to Colonel David Hunt, Bergdahl even “called his unit the day after he deserted to tell his unit he deserted.”

Barack Obama must have known all or some of this, or should have known it, when he announced the exchange of five Guantanamo detainees for Bergdahl. But he gave no hint of knowing it when he declared that the swap was “a reminder of America’s unwavering commitment to leave no man or woman in uniform behind on the battlefield.”

It was nonsense, and he must have known it. The desertion charge is a positive step, but there needs to be one more charge as well: treason.

Also see:

***

Published on Mar 26, 2015 by The Savage Nation

From the March 26, 2015 edition of “The Savage Nation” with Michael Savage: Terrorism expert and former PLO terrorist Walid Shoebat joins the program for an explosive interview to talk about Obama’s love affair with Islam, a potential nuclear weapons deal with Iran, ISIS and the Bowe Bergdahl story.

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‘Huge surge’ of ‘unscreened’ Muslims flooding U.S.

Muslims_Capitol (1)WND, by GREG COROMBOS, March 27, 2015:

Muslim immigration from dangerous nations is dramatically higher in recent years, and government assurances that immigrants are being properly screened is “a farce,” according to accomplished author and columnist Paul Sperry.

“It’s a huge surge under Obama. In the last three years, he’s averaged 100,000 new immigrants from Muslim nations a year. That is very alarming. It’s more than we’re importing both from Central America and Mexico combined. This is a big shift in immigration flows,” said Sperry, who is the author of “Infiltration: How Muslim Spies and Subversives Have Penetrated Washington” and co-author of “Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld That’s Conspiring to Islamize America.”

“It’s really insane what we’re doing. No one’s really talking about it, but this mass immigration from Muslim countries poses a serious national security threat,” said Sperry, who is also a Hoover Institution media fellow and former Washington bureau chief of WND. Sperry frequently writes for the New York Post and Investor’s Business Daily.

The stated reason for the influx in recent years is the rise in refugees from war-torn nations like Syria and Iraq. The number of people accepted from Syria in particular baffles Sperry, who said there is a long standing policy of keeping Syrians at bay.

“Syria has always been on our terrorist list,” he said. “We have had very strict restrictions on Syrian immigration. Since Syria’s become a failed state, Obama’s increased the number of refugees. By the time he leaves office, we will be importing over 10,000 Syrians into this country. This is a concern because Iraq and Syria are now controlled by the Islamic State.”

The government insists the case of each refugee is carefully scrutinized before he or she is allowed into the U.S. But Sperry said that claim is laughable.

“At the top levels of the administration, DHS and so forth, they claim that these refugees are being vetted,” Sperry said. “But it’s a complete farce. We know that from testimony from the FBI officials who are in charge of that type of vetting process for terrorists coming in under visas and these refugee programs.”

Listen to the WND/Radio America interview with Paul Sperry

What has the FBI testimony shown?

“They admit, under oath, that they have no idea who these people are, and they can’t find out what type of backgrounds they have, criminal, terrorism or otherwise, because there is no vetting opportunities,” Sperry said. “You can’t vet somebody if you don’t have documentation, police records, etc.”

He said, “Of course, Iraq and Syria are now failed states and the police. There are no police records, so we are not vetting these folks.”

Sperry said it’s a huge gamble to let people from hostile nations enter the U.S. without any meaningful background check.

“We have no idea if they’re going to come into this country to escape terrorism or to carry out terrorism. We have no idea, and they admit as much. For all we know, they could be joining a sleeper cell here,” said Sperry, who noted that Obama has also greatly increased the number of Saudis in the U.S. on student visas.

According to Sperry, the U.S. should be feverishly dialing back its acceptance of Muslims from questionable nations. He said Western Europe is a glaring example of what happens when more scrutiny is not paid to who enters the country. Sperry cites recent terror attacks and plots in Paris, Copenhagen and Brussels as proof that liberal immigration standards and refusal to demand assimilation is a breeding ground for disaster.

“They opened the floodgates for North African Muslims,” he said. “Now they regret it, of course, but it’s too late. Europe regrets doing what we’re doing now. We’re the ones who are rolling out the welcome mat for Muslims from these hostile nations.”

While Sperry is quick to clarify that the U.S. contains none of the no-go zones for police that are found in some major European cities, he said political figures in the U.S. are naive to think that Muslims are not effecting major change in communities across the country, including some just a stone’s throw from the nation’s capital.

“That’s just nonsense on stilts,” he said. “These politicians need to get out and go out into some of the communities just in their backyard. Alexandria, Virginia, for example, Bailey’s Crossroad. They actually call that area Northern Virginia-stan.”

Two major Midwestern cities are also cause for major concern to Sperry.

“Then you have Dearbornistan, Michigan, and Minneapolis,” he said. “We’ve brought in so many Somalian refugees that they’ve turned Minneapolis into a terror hot spot. They are very belligerent, very aggressive about asserting their culture onto the West. The Minneapolis mayor is now wearing a hijab when she meets with Muslim leaders.”

Asserting the culture leads to a litany of other problems, Sperry said law enforcement has a tough time arresting Muslims in some areas for spousal abuse because it is allowed by the Quran if the wife is disobedient to her husband. He also said honor killings are on the rise, where fathers or brothers are permitted to murder Muslim girls for wearing Western clothing or dating a non-Muslim. Female genital mutilation is also a growing problem.

Sperry said it’s time to stop pretending America is not at war and take concrete measures to keep out people from suspect nations. He believes there’s an obvious place to start.

“They have a list of Muslim countries who are most hostile to the U.S. and the West,” Sperry said. “They rank them. We can start with those countries for a moratorium, putting some curbs on immigration from these countries.”

If the lack of solid background information were not enough, Sperry said the FBI is hopelessly overwhelmed in trying to vet immigrants already in the country, so opening the doors to hundreds of thousands more makes the nation even more vulnerable.

“Our FBI doesn’t even have the resources to get a handle on all of the ISIS/jihadist threat in the Muslim community,” he said. “Now we’re going to lay on top of that all of these new immigrants who are even potentially more radical on top of that threat matrix. I mean that’s just ridiculous.”

But is it fair to let no one in from those countries when surely a sizable percentage has no interest in attacking the U.S.? Sperry said there’s no other choice.

“We just don’t have the information,” he said. “The FBI admits they don’t have the information on the ground that they need, unless the FBI is going to go into these failed states, which isn’t going to happen. They do not have the police records, the police reports that they can make objective decisions on these folks coming in.

“It’s a pure sympathy play to let all these folks in on blind trust. We just cannot do that.”

Anti-Semitism and Support for Terrorists on College Campuses

AMERICAN COLLEGE CAMPUSES: ISRAEL, NO; ISIS, YES

by Rachel Molschky, March 27, 2015:

To support Israel is racist; to support ISIS is a demonstration of diversity. This is the atmosphere at American college campuses today. “Higher learning” has become synonymous with “liberal brainwashing.”

It is important to remember that Israel is America’s ally- not just any ally, but America’s closest ally in the Middle East. Despite President Obama’s blatant hatred for Israeli PM Netanyahu and his Administration’s obvious moves against our only truly democratic friend in the region, at the end of the day, Israel is still a close ally of the United States.

Yet at America’s colleges and universities, which celebrate diversity, the extremely diverse, humanitarian and peaceful Israel (whose population is made up of multiple races and religions), is the enemy.

A few examples:

Connecticut College professor Andrew Pessin is accused of racism for supporting Israel against Gaza terrorists.

After his Facebook post described Gazans as a wild pit bull in a cage, which attacks violently whenever let out of that cage, all hell broke loose from the anti-Israel camp. The Center for the Comparative Study of Race and Ethnicity at Connecticut College and the history department condemned the “hate speech,” “dehumanizing language,” “bigotry,” and the celebration or incitement of “violence and brutality.”

A screenshot of the professor's Facebook post.
A screenshot of the professor’s Facebook post.

The professor is actually against violence and brutality according to what he’s written. Those who disagree with his post are the ones who are supporting violence.

As a matter of fact, Pessin spoke the truth. Gaza is ruled by Hamas. Hamas is a wild pit bull, and no matter how much anyone tries to pretend that Gazans do not support Hamas, the terrorism and support for terror against innocent Israeli civilians and even Jews in Diaspora speaks for itself. Over the summer of 2014, during Operation Protective Edge, anti-Israel rallies around the world turned into anti-Jew violent riots. The pro-Palestinians showed their overwhelming support for Hamas and their hatred for Jews.

Yet this professor is the one accused of hate speech and celebrating violence.

[Palestinian rockets killed more Gazans in 2014 war: Amnesty]

You can start an ISIS “humanitarian” club and training camp at Cornell.

Joseph Scaffido, the Assistant Dean of Students for Student Activities at Cornell University, one of the most prestigious universities in America, spoke on hidden camera to an undercover journalist posing as a student from Morocco who hopes to attend the Ivy League school next year. The “student” asked about starting an ISIS humanitarian group, raising awareness for the “freedom fighters,” obtaining funding to bring over a terrorist to give a speech, and even starting a training camp. The Dean’s responses were all “yes, yes, yes,” explaining that Ithaca, where Cornell is located, is a very liberal community.

Apparently “liberal” now means “terror supporting.” Incidentally, as liberal as President Obama is, and although he is unwilling to admit that ISIS is Islamic, he at least recognizes that it is a terror group.

ISIS is an enemy of the United States. Israel is a friend.

More examples:

A Jewish UCLA student was initially denied a spot in student government because being Jewish was not in line with the values of the student group.

Being Jewish was called “a conflict of interest.”

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who speaks out against the abuse of women in Islam, was offered an honorary degree from Brandeis University, but after Muslim cries of Islamophobia, the university took back its offer. 

Any advocacy of women’s rights is deemed “Islamophobic.”

Ali was raised Muslim and herself is the victim of atrocities like female genital mutilation (FGM) and forced marriage. She was once a pious Muslim, but after the Somali native was granted political asylum to the Netherlands and received an education, she began to reflect on Islam and its teachings. After the 9/11 attacks, she picked up the Qur’an and hadith, and it wasn’t long before she renounced her faith.

Ali’s AHA Foundation “works to protect and defend the rights of women and girls in the West from oppression justified by religion and culture”: http://theahafoundation.org/

Apparently defending the rights of women and girls is “Islamophobic.”

The decision of Brandeis University to revoke its offer to Ali is pure hypocrisy. Why? Because the school has given such honors to anti-Semites in the past. Jay Bergman, Professor of History
Central Connecticut State University, writes for FrontPage Magazine in an open letter to the university:

“You say that you are withdrawing the award because Ms. Hirsi Ali’s views violate what you call ‘the core values’ of the university.  But Brandeis saw nothing wrong in awarding an honorary degree to Tony Kushner, who has called the creation of the state of Israel a mistake and falsely accused it of ethnic cleansing; and to Desmond Tutu, an anti-semitic bigot who has compared Israel to Nazi Germany.  From this one could reasonably conclude — since Tutu’s anti-semitism did not cause Brandeis to refrain from awarding him a degree — that anti-semitism is either one of the core values of your university or is not inconsistent with these values.

“It is clear that at Brandeis University Israel can be smeared and those who do so are rewarded, but someone who properly criticizes Islam is unfairly attacked and dishonored.”

Anti-Semitism is allowed at a school founded by the Jewish community, but legitimate concerns regarding the mistreatment of women in Islam go against what the university stands for?

What’s more, anti-Israel professors are teaching Middle Eastern studies at American universities; 
Hamas is on campus under the guise of the MSA (Muslim Students Association) and SJP (Students for Justice in Palestine);
and there are multiple cases of Jewish students receiving threats or other acts of anti-Semitism like the swastikas painted on a Jewish fraternity at Emory University last year, chants of “Heil Hitler,” and anti-Israel speeches by former President Jimmy Carter.

Terror_connections

The result of a growing Muslim population in America is a growing anti-Semitic population. But it is worse than that. Now our young adults, who attend colleges and universities in the hopes of getting a good education, a higher degree and eventually beginning a successful career, some becoming our future politicians and practically all of voting age already, are being taught that our ally is our enemy, and our enemy is our friend. They are in effect, being taught that it is racist to say anything which might be considered “negative” against terrorists.

So bring on the ISIS terrorist speakers but condemn the Israel-supporting professors. Welcome to university life in America today.

***

PDF of the Muslim Hate Groups On Campus pamphlet

***

A new war against the ‘oldest hatred’ by Phyllis Chesler

Anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism — two sides of the same coin — are raging yet again. They are brutally alive in the Middle East, Europe and even here in America.

Yet now, at long last, there is some pushback, at least on the “battlefield of ideas.”

It comes in the form of a new academic institute championed by a hardened veteran of this war, and its presence at universities throughout the world is blossoming.

In this country, we hear shouts of Jew-hatred at every pro-Palestinian demonstration.

We read all about it in the biased left-liberal, anti-Israel media and see it in President Obama’s overt hostility to Israel and its prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.

Perhaps most troubling, though, is its presence on the American campus, where it is at full boil.

There, Israel-bashing is embraced as an expression of politically correct, divine truth — rather than called out for what it often really is: unadulterated racism.

Professors disguise their hatred of Jews by presenting it as a “politically righteous” stand against Israel, since the Jewish state is, in their portrayal, a colonialist, apartheid nation.

A 2015 report by the National Demographic Survey of American Jewish College Students found 54 percent of 1,157 college students polled at 55 American campuses have experienced and/or witnessed anti-Semitic incidents.

Enter Prof. Charles Small — to the rescue. Small founded the Institute for the Study of Global Anti-Semitism and Policy after running a successful similar program at Yale from 2005 to 2011.

The Yale program was superb; experts there examined contemporary Islamic Jew- and infidel-hatred and terrorism in new academic ways — that is, openly and honestly.

That doomed it. The program was squashed and he was forced out by leftist pressure and a campaign by Arab and pro-Palestinian students, faculty and advocates.

Now, he’s back, and his new effort is also seeing success. The institute is proving a powerful force, one the Western academic world (not surprisingly) abhors.

He’s offering a rigorous scholarly program dedicated to the study of contemporary global anti-Semitism.

Anti-Semitism may be the “oldest hatred,” but no such program focusing on its current-day manifestation has ever before existed.

Instead, America today is awash with well-funded anti-Israel, anti-American and anti-Western Middle Eastern studies departments. Small says he is “fighting anti-Semitism on the battlefield of ideas, not in university corridors, not at campus demonstrations.”

By 2012, ISGAP had a foothold at Fordham and Harvard law schools, Stanford and McGill. It’s now at Columbia Law, Sapienza University in Rome and the University of Paris-Sorbonne. In two weeks, it will debut at the University of Chile.

In the 2014-2015 academic year, ISGAP presented more than 100 seminars in English, French and Italian.

Through the guidance of executive-committee Chairman Lawrence Benenson, funding is diverse, coming from “both right of center and left of center.”

The effort has not always been easy. The powers that be at the Sorbonne said “anti-Semitism is not important, not relevant” — their exact words.

Grudgingly, they let Small stage an event “just once,” thinking nothing would come of it; instead, 80 people showed up.

At another seminar after the Charlie Hebdo and kosher supermarket attacks, 150 people turned out. ISGAP was later given military protection and invited to formally join the Sorbonne as a “recognized research center.”

This is an extraordinary victory. “The French now understand that those who are profoundly anti-Semitic are threatening the foundations of their society,” says Small.

This coming summer, ISGAP will be training professors at Oxford. Applications have poured in from Canada, the United States, the UK, Russia, China, Brazil and Argentina.

Yet already, it boasts a prestigious staff, including experts like Robert Wistrich, Martin Kramer, Bassam Tibi, Shimon Samuels, Valentina Colombo, Irwin Mansdorf, Meir Litvak, Richard Landes and others.

Despite the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (a campaign by “Israel-deniers”), the campus Israeli “apartheid” hate-fests and the indoctrination taking place in social sciences and departments of Middle East studies, we now have the beginning of a successful “fight back” strategy. Let’s hope it continues to rise to the enormous challenge it faces.

***

Revealed: Jihadist Lessons at the Boston Marathon Bombers’ Mosque

islamic-society-of-boston-AP-640x480Breitbart, by ILYA FEOKTISTOV & CHARLES JACOBS, March 27, 2015

The Boston Marathon bombers’ mosque, the Islamic Society of Boston (ISB), employs an intensive radicalizing program aimed at Boston’s historically moderate Muslim community, especially at its youth. It’s called “Tarbiya,” which is Arabic for “growth and refinement.” It is not something that is practiced as part of classical mainstream Islam.

APT has obtained several curriculum documents created by ISB-affiliated groups, which describe exactly what is taught and when, with assignments detailed down to book and page number. We are making the most detailed and traceable of these documents availablehere and here. We will focus in this article on a particular Tarbiya program called “Young Muslims,” which was explicitly endorsed by Suhaib Webb, the Imam of the ISB’s mega-mosque in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston. It lists books that all participants must read, and even includes page numbers for specific assignments (the document was formerly available at the program’s website, and can still be accessed through an archived version of the site).

The authors of many of these books are among the “Who’s Who” of radical Islamic ideologues. A lot of the books are available in the Boston Marathon bombers’ mosque’s library. Major focus is given to books by Hassan Al Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood; Said Qutb, the father of modern jihadism; Maulana Maududi, the father of political Islam on the Indian subcontinent; and Yusuf Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, whom the Anti-Defamation League calls the “Theologian of Terror.” Some of the books on the “must read” list have nothing to do with Islam, such as several books written by Howard Zinn, Noam Chomsky, and Michael Moore. Having young Muslims read a curriculum that includes far-left atheist authors of Jewish and Christian backgrounds shows that the goal of Tarbiya is not just to develop a Muslim’s spirituality, but also to develop within him a deep animosity to Western democracy.

The ISB and its political arm, the Muslim American Society (MAS), are very open about the program’s existence and even have websites dedicated to it. MAS teaches Tarbiya at each of its dozens of chapters across the United States, and the entire national Tarbiya program happens to be led by the Imam of the Boston Marathon bombers’ ISB Cambridge mosque, Basyouni Nehela. MAS describes Tarbiya in these terms:

MAS aspires to raise a generation of committed and disciplined Muslims who will spread the message of Islam and implement the Movement’s vision in all fields of Islamic work[.] … MAS delivers a rigorous educational curriculum to its current and potential members … The focus of Tarbiya is to groom members who… are equipped with the necessary knowledge, understanding, and skills to make a difference in the society by taking an active role, both individually and collectively, in the reform process that seeks the betterment of our community, our country, and the whole world.

The description of the program makes it seem like yet another benign new-agey spirituality and growth system. That is because, while it is openly advertised, the extremist and jihadist aspects of its curriculum are not – both for the sake of keeping this radical indoctrination from outside scrutiny and for the sake of keeping it, at first, from the Muslim youths who are thinking about joining it.

Indeed, a “Young Muslim” first entering the program will not be reading any extremist authors for a very long time. The first phase of the program is dedicated to completely legitimate religious learning. Participants read the Quran and other Islamic religious texts. They learn about the life of the Muslim prophet, Muhammad, and they study the importance of the Five Pillars of Islam: declaration of faith, prayer, charity, fasting, and pilgrimage.

But soon, those participants who show a high level of dedication, zeal, and religiosity, of willingness to internalize everything that has been taught to them, are told that simply praying and giving charity are not enough. At this next stage of Tarbiya, they are assigned books, such as Let Us Be Muslims by jihadist ideologue Maulana Maududi, who provides them with the core Islamist idea: Muslims need to be more than pious; they need to rule over all mankind:

Brothers in Islam! The Prayer, Fasting, Almsgiving, and Pilgrimage are so important that they are described as the pillars of Islam. They are not, however, like the worship rites in other religions. […]

These acts of worship have in fact been ordained to prepare us for a greater purpose and to train us for a greater duty… What exactly is that great ultimate purpose? Stated simply: the ultimate objective of Islam is to abolish the lordship of man over man and bring him under the rule of the One God. To stake everything you have – including your lives – to achieve this purpose is called Jihad.

Having thus channeled the zealous young Muslim’s sincere religious devotion into an extremist agenda, the third stage of Tarbiya indoctrination consists entirely of incitement to violent Jihad, hatred for America, and of Western civilization in general. It is in this stage that young Muslims study in detail the Islamist corollary to Mein Kampf or theCommunist Manifesto: Said Qutb’s Milestones, which outlines a road map to establishing a global Islamic State ruled by Sharia law. It is Said Qutb who inspired Osama Bin Laden. According to Qutb:

All Jewish and Christian societies today are also ignorant societies… Islam cannot accept any mixing with this ignorance… One should accept the Islamic law without any question and reject all other laws in any shape or form… The abolition of man-made laws cannot be achieved only through preaching… It must employ Jihad.

By the time a young Muslim Tarbiya participant reaches this phase, he has already bought in to all the indoctrination in the previous phases that brought him there. The books he studies in the third phase, such as To Be a Muslim by Lebanese Muslim Brotherhood leader Fathi Yakun tell him:

A Muslim must always worship Allah and wage jihad until death in order to reach his ultimate goal… Obedience for a Muslim means to obey every command and implement it whether in time of happiness or hardship, and whether one likes it or not… He will not act against the leader in agreed matters, and will be loyal to him in every action, regardless of his personal likes or dislikes… Dissociate yourself from every gathering or organization that opposes your ideological standpoint, especially when the Movement asks you to do so.

A key component of Tarbiya is not just the material taught, but the structure of the program, in which recruits are organized into intimate cells called “usras.” MAS is considered by Federal prosecutors to be the overt arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in America, and the program directly follows the methods developed by the Muslim Brotherhood’s founders in Egypt. Eric Trager, an expert on the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy has lectured about the Brotherhood’s Tarbiya process in Egypt:

At the lowest level of the Brotherhood structure is what’s called an usra, or “family.” You can think of this as a cell. This is a group of five to eight Muslim Brothers. They meet weekly for about three hours. They discuss the Quran, religious texts, the Brotherhood’s curriculum, politics. They share their personal lives. The members of this group become a Muslim Brother’s best friends. The people that you work most closely with are in your usra. The usra is a mechanism through which the Brotherhood embeds your social relationships into the organization so that you’re less likely to disobey it due to peer pressure and you’re less likely to leave it because you’ll be leaving your best friends.

This is exactly how the MAS branch in Boston describes its usras:

The usra is an intensive, spiritually-focused, activism-oriented program that develops the individual and invites him or her to join hands with MAS and work for the sake of Islam as a central priority in life. There are weekly assignments prior to and following each usra. Each member is expected to spend approximately 3-6 hours a week on usra and usra-related activities (usra attendance [~ 2 hours], usra assignments [1-2 hrs], dawah work (example MSA work, MAS Youth work, or other Islamic work, etc) [3 hrs], social activities [2 hours /month].) Each usra generally contains around 5-7 members.

MAS demands that those entering its Tarbiya program be “willing to be committed to theusra and hold working for Islam as a central priority in life.” ISB Roxbury Imam Suhaib Webb defines the usra as: “the usra is you’re in the ocean swimming, you’re lost, your boat sunk and suddenly you see some people on the boat, you get there and they give you a blanket and a cup of soup, that’s the usra.” All of this makes leaving the MAS/ISB program extremely difficult. It also makes it extremely likely that if a young Muslim participant is encouraged by his usra leader to do something terrible for the sake of the movement, he will gladly comply, even if this means prison or death. The usra system of the Tarbiya program is less similar to a religious requirement than it is to the demands of a criminal enterprise. These methods used by MAS/ISB are much like the techniques that gangs and mafia groups use to recruit and maintain a death grip on their members.

We do not know who, if anyone, encouraged the Tsarnaev brothers to bomb the Boston Marathon. We think it was extremely unlikely that any ISB or MAS leader told them to do it and taught them how to make the bombs. The slow and steady work of the Muslim Brotherhood in America, referred to by Islamism experts as “the stealth or civilization jihad,” aims – not through violence, but through pressure and persuasion (“Dawa” in Arabic) – to gradually move Western Muslim youths into its camp. The ISB and MAS are experiencing success, probably beyond their expectations, in posing as moderates and becoming accepted into Boston civic society. This success includes positive coverage in the mainstream press, support from mainstream politicians, and access to new unsuspecting recruits within Boston’s traditionally moderate Muslim community. Why risk all of that with a bomb that only can set the effort back? The Tarbiya curriculum repeatedly states that the time for violent jihad has not yet come – much preparation work still needs to be done. The Muslim Brotherhood’s program will always have this fundamental problem: when you tell teenagers that something can be a good thing to do, but “not yet”– whether it be sex or alcohol or violent jihad– you will surely find that some will jump the gun.

* * * *

On the other hand… As he lay wounded and hiding inside a boat stored for the winter in a suburban Boston-area backyard on April 19th, 2013, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev penciled a confession on the 22-foot cruiser’s walls. Four days prior, he and his brother exploded twin homemade pressure cooker bombs at the 117th Boston Marathon, killing three and injuring 264. Less than 24 hours before Dzhokhar was eventually discovered by the boat owner, the Tsarnaev brothers ambushed and murdered MIT police officer Sean Collier, hijacked a Mercedes SUV, and engaged in a fierce 8-minute gun battle with cops before Dzhokhar drove the SUV over his brother, Tamerlan, and escaped. Tamerlan died shortly thereafter, but, as he waited for his inevitable capture or death, Dzhokhar took the time to list his grievances in detail. The jury at his currently ongoing trial saw the boat and the wall panel bearing Dzhokhar’s message:

“Our actions came with a message and that is la ilaha illalah [there is no god but Allah]. We are promised victory and we will surely get it. […]

“We will pursue this evil force to its own lands, invade its Western heartland, and struggle to overcome it until all the world shouts by the name of the Prophet and the teachings of Islam spread throughout the world. […]

“Know you are fighting men who look into the barrel of your gun and see heaven, now how can you compete with that. […]

“Regularly make the intention to go on jihad with the ambition to die as a martyr. You should be ready for this right now. […]

“We Muslims are one body, you hurt one you hurt us all. […]

“A Muslim has no relatives except those who share the belief in Allah. […]

“The ummah is beginning to rise/awaken [bullet hole] has awoken the Mujahideen.”

“To be true Muslims, we must be Mujahideen. We can no more sit back passively; we must try, actively, to change history, that is, wage Jihad.

Only the odd-number passages above were actually written by Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on the inside of the boat. The rest come from books taught as part of the Young Muslims Tarbiya program.

Muslims have lived in Boston since the early 20th century. Islam has existed for over 1,400 years. Yet Tarbiya did not exist until it was invented by the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1930s as a cultic innovation within the religion of Islam. This cult did not begin to affect Boston’s historically moderate Muslim community until the 1990s, with the creation of the Boston marathon bombers’ mosque and the takeover of many other local Muslim institutions.

The correlation between Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s note in the boat and what is being taught to Boston’s Muslims through the ISB/MAS Tarbiya program is striking. These kinds of teachings, as APT board member and moderate Muslim Sheikh Ahmed Mansour says, put a bomb in a young Muslim’s heart. Unless the Tarbiya program is exposed and terminated, there will be others who will take the bombs in their hearts and recreate them in real life, just as the Tsarnaevs did on April 15th, 2013.

Charles Jacobs is president and Ilya Feoktistov is research director of Americans for Peace and Tolerance.