“Analysis of the Iran Deal” with Lt. Col. Allen West

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Published on Aug 28, 2015 by emetonline

July 22, 2015 – EMET’s New York Chapter hosted Lt. Col. Allen West in New York City to provide an analysis of the Iran Nuclear Deal and also global radical jihadism.

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ICYMI:

Obama’s Politicized Intelligence

A video released from Daesh (or ISIS or 'Islamic State') shows militants executing 25 captives (Syrian army soldiers) in the ruins of the main Roman amphitheater in the ancient city of Palmyra, Syria, on July 3, 2015 / AP

A video released from Daesh (or ISIS or ‘Islamic State’) shows militants executing 25 captives (Syrian army soldiers) in the ruins of the main Roman amphitheater in the ancient city of Palmyra, Syria, on July 3, 2015 / AP

Washington Free Beacon, by Matthew Continetti, August 28, 2015:

The anniversary of the U.S. war against the Islamic State passed with little notice. It was August 7 of last year that President Obama authorized the first airstrikes against ISIS in Iraq, a campaign he expanded a month later to include targets in Syria. So far this month, the president has delivered remarks on the Voting Rights Act, his deal with Iran, the budget, clean energy, and Hurricane Katrina. ISIS? Not a peep.

Obama’s quiet because the war is not going well. Despite the loss of Tikrit earlier this year, the Islamic State’s western boundary is stable, and its eastern boundary now encroaches on Damascus. The president’s air campaign is one of the most limited and desultory America has fought in decades—ranking last in daily averages of strike sorties and bombs dropped. In late July, when the Turks permitted America the use of their air bases to launch attacks on ISIS, a “senior administration official” told the New York Times that the decision was “a game changer.” In the ensuing days the number of airstrikes in Syria actually fell.

The growing number of U.S. advisers—there are now more than 3,300 American military personnel in Iraq—has been unable to repair the damage wrought on the Iraqi Army by sectarian and political purges after our 2011 withdrawal. Even as the administration brags about killing more than 10,000 ISIS terrorists, a number that strains credulity, the Caliphate has become more deeply entrenched in its territory, and inspires attacks abroad.

Meanwhile the congressional authorization that the president sought is dead. One of our most gifted generals predicts the conflict will last “10 to 20 years.” And now comes news that the Pentagon is investigating whether intelligence assessments of ISIS have been manipulated for political reasons. “Analysts,” reports the Daily Beast, “have been pushed to portray the group as weaker than the analysts believe it actually is.” This sort of dishonesty helps no one—except a president whose primary concern is leaving office with his reputation for ending wars intact, and the military brass who wish to remain in his good graces.

What’s especially galling about this allegation is that Obama and the Democratic Party have spent years spuriously accusing President Bush of lying the United States into war in 2003. Spend a moment thinking of what the news cycle would be if George W. were still our president and the Pentagon inspector general opened an investigation into whether the bureaucracy was sprucing up intelligence to make it politically palatable: The chorus of “Bush lied, people died” would be deafening, Congress would demand investigations, the national security leak machine would start humming, John Conyers would reconvene his mock impeachment hearing, and the entire controversy would be set against the backdrop of antiwar marches and publicized denunciations of militaristic policy. What have we instead? ABC’s Good Morning America mentioned the Pentagon investigation. No other broadcast network did.

It’s an unanticipated consequence of Barack Obama’s presidency: his immobilization of the antiwar legions, the way his election immediately neutered the zealots who, if a Republican were in office, would be marching against drone strikes and mass surveillance and war in Afghanistan and air war in Libya, Syria, Iraq and proxy war in Yemen. What does it say about the left that the most spirited attacks on Obama national security policy have come from the right: On drones, surveillance, and congressional authorization for war, you are far more likely to hear criticism from Ted Cruz or Rand Paul than from the politicians who rode into office denouncing Bush’s misadventure in Iraq. The protestors who flooded New York in 2004 and fell to the ground at the D.C. “Die-In” in 2007—they either support the president or are too busy with Occupy Wall Street and Black Lives Matter to care.

Obama has thus been allowed to wage a war for more than a year not only without the authorization he called for but also without the accountability that pressure from his left would bring. He’s flying solo, and below him are an endless, inconclusive war, a terrorist state built on sharia law and sex slavery, rampant chemical weapons use, civilian casualties, and a refugee crisis that is causing social, economic, and political instability in Europe. The only thing missing from this picture is outrage—elite fury over the geopolitical and humanitarian results of the president’s evasive policy, of doing only the bare minimum necessary to convince people that you aren’t ignoring the problem.

There’s no outrage because the media, our bipartisan political establishment, and indeed the American people themselves are unwilling to face the scope of the challenge the Islamic State presents. To uproot it we would have to send U.S. ground forces to Iraq in large numbers, not just special forces operating in tandem with unrestricted air support. We would have to retake and hold ground lost in the years since we departed Iraq, and we would have to commit to remaining in Iraq and Syria for a long time. To deal a blow to radical Islam that would deter recruitment, stop the bandwagon effect, and secure America from attack by militants and their fellow-travelers would require a military and economic commitment the United States, and least of all our president, is simply not prepared to make.

Easier to perform the illusion of activity, of success and advance, so that all the boxes are checked, all our consciences placated. Easier to pretend that the problem of ISIS can be “contained” and that our new ally Iran can handle the situation in its emerging capacity as regional hegemon. Easier to go about our business, to spin or outright ignore the war our country has been waging in Iraq and Syria for more than a year. So much easier not to worry about what’s happening over there—until, that is, the enemy attacks us here.

Also see:

Building an Islamic State in America, One Church at a Time

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Frontpage, by Daniel Greenfield, August 27, 2015:

Across Europe, thousands of churches have closed and many of them have become mosques. The St. Mark’s Cathedral in London survived Nazi bombers in WW2, but fell to a new invasion and became the New Peckham Mosque. In France, where there are now more Muslims than practicing Catholics, the Islamic colonists demanded that thousands of empty churches be turned into mosques. The Capernaum Church in Germany has become the Al-Nour Islamic Center. In Amsterdam, the St. Ignatius Church was transformed into the Fatih Camii Mosque. Its name means ‘The Conqueror’s Mosque’.

The original Fatih Camii Mosque had been built by the Turkish invaders in Constantinople on the site of the Church of the Holy Apostles. Like their ISIS descendants, the Turks drove out the Greek Christians, destroyed the church and replaced it with a mosque named after the monster Mehmed II, who inaugurated Islamic rule over the fallen city with slavery, rape and beheadings in the ISIS style.

Today ‘Conqueror’s Mosques’ have sprung up not only in Istanbul and Amsterdam, but in Paris, Toronto, Melbourne and Brooklyn, where within sight of the Statue of Liberty extending her torch of freedom to the oppressed of the world, stands the grim squalid outpost of the oppressor of the world.

Mehmed and the Statue of Liberty, the armies of Islam and our way of freedom cannot long coexist.

Islam is conquering Europe. It is also conquering America.

In Syracuse, New York, the Holy Trinity Catholic Church has become a mosque. Despite the church being protected by the Landmark Preservation Board, its crosses were cut down and painted over. After the Islamic terror attacks of September 11, no more planes flew into buildings. Instead they landed at airports disgorging a different sort of conquering army that came with visas instead of boxcutters.

In the decade after 9/11, the number of Muslims in Onondaga County more than doubled.  A key role was played by Catholic Charities of Onondaga County, which could not find the money and energy to maintain a church into which generations of immigrations had poured their hopes and dreams, but which served as one of the VOLAGs (voluntary agencies) filling the area with UNHCR approved refugees.

75% of the “refugees” colonizing Syracuse are Muslim. Almost a thousand refugees a year are inflicted on the people of Syracuse who already live in the 23rd poorest city out of the 575 biggest cities in the country. Half the children of Syracuse live in poverty. But each refugee means a $725 check for the VOLAG. Last year that meant a $3 million grant for Catholic Charities.

And while VOLAGs like Catholic Charities cater to migrants, churches are turned into mosques. The North Side, where Catholic Charities has been active in its “charity work” is now full of women in hijabs and the Holy Trinity Church is no more.

Yusuf Soule, who bought the church, explained why he chose it. “The North Side is the magnet for refugees.  The two agencies that work with refugees (InterFaith Works and Catholic Charities) are here.”

The more of these magnets we create, the fewer churches and synagogues there will be. Temple Beth El in Syracuse was hit by a Muslim terrorist who set fire to it while shouting, “I did this for you, Allah.”

No one had to set the Holy Trinity Church on fire. The Conference of Catholic Bishops took care of that.

Civilizations don’t fall because there are barbarians at the gate. There are barbarians at the gate because a dying civilization has lost touch with the values that made it great. The barbarians didn’t bring down Byzantium. They aren’t bringing down America and Europe. The barbarians of the prophet just show up to profit from the fall and we are the ones who open the gates and hand over the keys to our killers.

Islam is built on the bones of civilizations. Every Islamic mosque is a conqueror’s mosque.

The most thrilling experience for the new colonizers of the West is the taking of a church or a synagogue and transforming it into a mosque. While for the moment this has to be done legally, it is the closest thing to the ISIS experience that an Islamist can have in America or Europe without going to jail.

This tragedy isn’t only happening in Europe. As the events in Syracuse show, it is taking place right here.

And it isn’t only Catholic churches in New York that are falling victim to this new breed of immigrant Taliban demolishing the un-Islamic to make way for the Islamic.

Two Baptist churches in Louisville, Kentucky have been turned into mosques.

“On a trip to England a few years ago, I recall seeing dozens of churches that had become mosques and wondering how it could happen there; now it’s happening here,” Paul Chitwood, the executive director of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, said.

Louisville has the misfortune of being a “preferred resettlement site” which makes it a major dumping ground. The Syrians are on their way courtesy of Islamic Relief USA and it already has 1,605 Somalis and plenty of Iraqis too.

Churches are being turned into mosques all across America. The Abundant Life Family Church in Nebraska is now the Sabah Mosque. St. John’s Catholic Church in Minneapolis became the Darul-Uloom Islamic Center. In Detroit, Our Lady Help of Christians Church fell to the Islamic Center of North Detroit.

Slowly and quietly, this is happening all across America as the Immigration Jihad uses taxpayer money to accomplish what Mohammed, Al Qaeda and ISIS could not. Al Qaeda can destroy our buildings, but only our government can import Muslim colonists who will take over them as bases for their ideology.

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French intelligence fears Islamist ‘missile strike on airliner’ or 9/11-style attack

French security forces are bracing for the eventuality of civil unrest (file photo) Photo: Alamy

French security forces are bracing for the eventuality of civil unrest (file photo) Photo: Alamy

Telegraph, by Henry Samuel and David Chazan, Aug. 27, 2015:

French security forces are bracing for the eventuality of civil unrest and fear there could be a missile strike on a passenger airliner or a September 11-style attack, according to sources close to French intelligence.

“Airlines have been warned of a possible attack on a plane with an anti-tank missile,” a source told The Telegraph. “But pilots are unsure how to take evasive action.”

After Friday’s thwarted attempt to massacre passengers on an Amsterdam-Paris train and a series of terrorist attacks and attempted killings in France this year, President François Hollande warned the nation to prepare for more violence, considered inevitable as the Islamist threat grows.

The army has made contingency plans for the “reappropriation of national territory”, meaning to win back control of neighbourhoods where the population become hostile to the security forces and where guns are easily obtainable, according to the source.

“There are a lot of alienated and angry fourth-generation immigrant kids in the suburbs and the prospect of radicalisation is increasingly likely,” the source said.

“The idea that attacks like the one on the train are carried out by individuals acting on their own is not credible. We’re dealing with highly-organised networks of militant Islamists embarked on a campaign of violence and determined to intensify it.”

Kalashnikov automatic rifles — used by the train gunman and Islamist terrorists who killed 17 people in Paris in January — and anti-tank missiles are now obtainable in France. Many were smuggled in from the former Yugoslavia after the Balkan wars in the 1990s. More weapons have come in from Libya, the sources said, adding that organised crime and terrorist groups were working together to procure them.

“We don’t know what happened to the arms we (France) to Libyan rebels. It’s worrying,” the source said.

In the chaos following the fall of the Libyan dictator, Muammar Gaddafi, French officials described the north African country as an “open-air arms market”. In 2011, France admitted to sending “light weapons” to Libyan rebels in 2011, but French media reported that consignments of heavier arms, including European-made Milan anti-tank missiles were also sent.

There were fears that Isil, al-Qaeda and other Islamist groups were procuring heavy weapons from the stocks of Gaddafi’s former army, and that rebel groups were losing control of their own arms.

As early as 2010, an anti-tank missile was seized by police along with several tons of cannabis. Since then, an unknown number of rocket-propelled grenades and missiles are believed to have been smuggled into the country.

A missile attack could be devastating for an airliner, particularly if the plane was taking off and full of fuel. The main Paris airport at Roissy is near drug-infested suburbs of the capital prone to violence.

Agents of the DGSI, France’s equivalent of MI5, warned they are powerless to improve surveillance of Islamist militants bent on losing their lives to cause maximum carnage, and have been “lucky” to have avoided far worse catastrophes since the Paris Islamist attacks in January that killed 17, Le Canard Enchaîné, the investigative and satirical weekly, reported.

An agent told the newspaper there were fears of “an upcoming 11 September à la française where (intelligence) services are mere spectators”.

Luck rather than judgment had allayed larger-scale strikes, another is cited as saying.

“We’ve been lucky. Passengers in a train who neutralise a suspect, another who shoots himself in the foot then calls the emergency services, and a third who fails to blow up a chemical factory; without these fortuitous turns of events, the human and material toll would have been much higher. And we wouldn’t have been able to change a thing,” he told the weekly.

“The truth is we’ve already tried everything. But we’ve reached the very limits of what we are able to do as much from a legislative and organisational as a financial point of view.”

European transport ministers are due to discuss more “systematic and coordinated” security checks across the continent in a meeting in Paris on Saturday, Bernard Cazeneuve, the French interior minister announced on Wednesday.

“We must examine whether we can implement a system that allows for more systematic checks in airports, in public transport, in a more coordinated way,” he told France Inter radio.

Also see:

Curt Schilling and the Death of Free Speech

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Frontpage, by Robert Spencer, August 27 2015:

“Curt Schilling’s tweet comparing Muslims to Nazis is even worse than it sounds,” howled Max Fisher in Vox – one of the many voices this week screaming for Schilling’s head for transgressing against America’s new and unwritten, but nonetheless frightfully draconian, speech codes.

Fisher professes ignorance of the perp’s illustrious career, semaphoring that he is a good Leftist elitist, ignorant of Schilling’s brutish, bourgeois athletic achievements: “Curt Schilling, whom Wikipedia informs me is a former baseball star and current ESPN commentator, sent a tweet on Tuesday that seems to have emerged straight from the internet nether-void of racist email forwards.”

“Racist”? Schilling tweeted a graphic that read, “It’s said only 5-10% of Muslims are extremists. In 1940, only 7% of Germans were Nazis. How’d that go?” So where is the “racism”? What race are “extremist Muslims”? What race are Muslims in the aggregate? What race is Islam? Or did Fisher mean that Schilling’s tweet was racist against Germans?

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Fisher compounds this muddled thinking by doubling down on the false claim in his headline, that Schilling likened Muslims to Nazis: “The argument here is pretty clear, even if the numbers are pure nonsense, but just so it’s not lost: Schilling is saying that the religion of Islam is akin to Nazi Germany, and that the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims are responsible for the actions of a tiny minority of extremists in the same way that Nazi-era Germans were complicit in Nazi crimes.”

Actually, Schilling’s tweet does neither of those things. It likens not the religion of Islam, but “extremist Muslims,” to Nazis, and it doesn’t say a thing about all Muslims being responsible for the crimes of Islamic jihadists. And Fisher’s woolly logic is typical of the firestorm that has engulfed Schilling, as he has been removed from ESPN’s coverage of the Little League World Series and is being pilloried everywhere. Schilling himself is repentant and apologetic, but it may do no good: he may be facing more punishment, and is taking a beating in the mainstream media for being “insensitive.”

But what exactly is so offensive about his tweet? Is it that he compared “extremist Muslims” to Nazis? Surely that can’t be it. The Islamic State hasn’t murdered six million Jews, but surely would if it could, and meanwhile its gleeful bloodlust, sex slavery, terrorizing of non-Muslims and all the rest of it make the comparison reasonable.

Or was Schilling “insensitive” for daring to suggest that peaceful Muslims aren’t doing much to rein in their violent coreligionists? Well, let’s see. Last month, Muslims in Ireland held a demonstration against the Islamic State. How many Muslims showed up? Fewer than fifty. And in October 2014 in Houston, a rally against the Islamic State organized by the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) drew the grand total of ten people. In August 2013 in Boston, about 25 Muslims rallied against “misperceptions” that Islam was violent. About the same number showed up in June 2013 at a progressive Muslim rally in Toronto to claim that their religion had been “hijacked.”

And back in 2005, a group called the Free Muslims Coalition held what it dubbed a “Free Muslims March Against Terror,” intending to “send a message to the terrorists and extremists that their days are numbered … and to send a message to the people of the Middle East, the Muslim world and all people who seek freedom, democracy and peaceful coexistence that we support them.” In the run-up to the event it got enthusiastic national and international publicity, but it ended up drawing about twenty-five people.

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Actually the number of radical Muslims is higher:

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Canadian “Hate Speech” Proposal Threatens Free Speech

by Abigail R. Esman
Special to IPT News
August 27, 2015

1223Thirteen years, thirteen honor killings, all in Muslim families, all of them in Canada. But if you should condemn those murders, you might find yourself the subject of investigation and convicted of a crime.

Quebec Human Rights Commissioner Jacques Frémont has proposed a bill “to prevent and combat hate speech and speech inciting violence.”

If adopted, the law known as Bill 59 would allow Quebec’s Human Rights Commission or members of the public “to initiate a ‘hate speech’ lawsuit against a person who makes a statement considered discriminatory against a group,” Marc Lebuis, director of Point de Bascule, an organization that tracks Islamist activities in Canada, said in a recent interview.

In addition, the bill would grant the commission power to investigate people alleged to have uttered hate speech, said Justice Minister Stephanie Vallée. Those convicted of promoting hate could be fined up to $20,000 and their names would be made public and posted indefinitely to a list available online.

Most view Bill 59 as a response to pressure from Muslim groups, who have filed several complaints of “Islamophobia” and anti-Muslim hate speech in recent years. In many ways, the bill resembles UN Resolution 16/18, an initiative of the 56 Islamic States who comprise the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and which restricts speech that could be considered “discriminatory” or which defames religion and can be considered “incitement to violence.” Only Bill 59 is worse: it pertains to personal, subjective, emotional responses that an individual has to something that he reads, hears, or encounters.

That this proposed statute flies in the face of everything we in the United States as well as in Canada believe to be fundamental to human and civil rights and the sanctity of free speech is not the only challenge the proposed bill presents. But it presents its greatest threat to democracy and the values the West holds sacred.

Ironically, Lebuis says, supporters justify the bill by suggesting it will protect democracy against terrorism. They reason that “terrorism is a reaction towards people who criticize their religion,” he explains, “so by banning the criticism of Islam, we would end terrorism.” Such arguments have been made both by Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard and by Muslim groups such as the Association of Muslims and Arabs for a Secular Quebec (AMAL). “Hate and Islamophobia drive certain people in groups subject to discrimination toward another form of extremism and violence,” said AMAL President Haroun Bouazzi in a recent presentation to the National Assembly during a debate over the bill.

But Canada’s federal criminal code already calls for imprisonment (up to two years) for “anyone who incites hatred against any identifiable group,” as the Montreal Gazettepoints out. Though the proposed bill addresses hate speech against individuals, not groups, it fails even to define what “hate speech” is. As attorney Julius Grey testified, “Nietzsche, Shakespeare and Voltaire could all be found to have incited violence and hatred. Should they have been censored?”

Moreover, because there is no clear definition of “hate speech” and no standard by which it can be measured, the bill leaves the door wide open for prosecution. “It is based on what people feel or could feel,” Lebuis said. “Public interest, the truth, facts or even intentions are no defense.”

That situation is made worse by the fact that conviction is based on the determination of the Human Rights Commission tribunal, overriding federal laws which require a determination of guilt “beyond reasonable doubt.” As columnist Don MacPhersonobserves in the Montreal Gazette:

“The federal Criminal Code defines ‘hate propaganda‘ as advocating or promoting genocide, inciting hatred against an identifiable group [that is] likely to lead to a breach of the peace,’ or ‘willfully’ promoting hatred against such a group … And an accused can’t be convicted ‘if the statements were relevant to any subject of public interest, the discussion of which was for the public benefit, and if on reasonable grounds he believed them to be true” (as would be the case, say, with any condemnation of an honor killing).
But Bill 59 makes no such provisions.

Others, including (surprisingly) AMAL’s Bouazzi, have objected to the proposed creation of a permanent, public record of those found guilty of “hate speech” – a gesture that is not only defamatory but could even become dangerous should anyone seek retribution. Further, “hate speech” is not defined in the bill, so such a conviction has Machiavellian potential: For example, were you, to ascribe honor violence or terrorism to cultural or religious beliefs, you could be subject to prosecution. This would be the case even if the actual perpetrator claimed to act in the name of culture or religion. And while a terrorist will go to prison for his deeds, should you be found guilty of violating Bill 59, your name, not his, will be indelibly included on that list visible to the world.

As such, the potential for political parties to silence – let alone criminalize – those who oppose them lurks ominously within the reaches of such a law.

Among Muslims, according to Pakistani-Canadian activist Tarek Fatah, opinions seem to be split. “Ironically, some Islamist-promoting organizations and mosques have welcomed Bill 59, notwithstanding the fact they violate it every week when they start their Friday prayers with a ritual invocation that asks, ‘Allah to give Muslims victory over the “kufaar”(Christians, Jews and Hindus),'” he writes in the Toronto Sun. Others like himself, he says, “everything we can to make sure Quebec’s Bill 59 does not pass.” And if it does pass, he adds, “the first complaint to the QHRC will be against Islamist mosques for spreading hatred against Jews and Christians.

That is a promise.”

Judging from past efforts to legislate such issues in Canada and from the apparent opposition to Bill 59 being voiced in editorials around the country, the measure seems to have little chance of passing. A measure to legalize sharia tribunals, for instance, failed in 2005, though ironically, these tribunals – opposed vehemently by Muslim women, who recognized that such tribunals tend to discriminate against women in cases of marriage, forced marriage, domestic abuse and inheritance – were denounced by many as “Islamophobic.” (One has to wonder what the Quebec HRC tribunal would have to say about that issue: Islamophobia or misogyny? And what of the person accused of “Islamophobia” who in turn declares the term “Islamophobic” offensive and presses charges against his accuser?)

Pierre Trudel, a lawyer and professor of law at the University of Montreal, also feels that the bill in its current form stands limited chance of succeeding. But, he added in an interview, “it’s fair to expect that it will be amended to answer the objections of many opponents.” Otherwise, he said, the result will be “a significant chilling effect on speech.”

Ironic, then, that nothing else could better hand a victory to those very terrorists the bill was written to subvert. In the words of Benjamin Franklin (as Silence Dogood), “Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freeness of speech.”

Abigail R. Esman, the author, most recently, of Radical State: How Jihad Is Winning Over Democracy in the West (Praeger, 2010), is a freelance writer based in New York and the Netherlands.

Also see:

Spanish authorities suspect at least 800 North African migrants are jihadists

page-image (1)Ezra Levant of TheRebel.media welcomes Simon Kent of Breitbart UK to discuss what’s being called the biggest mass migration in Europe since 1945.

These African immigrants are straining Europe’s social services — and goodwill.

The foiled terror attack on a Paris-bound train is just one example of the dangers posed by Muslim “refugees” who can travel at will without passports or security checks.

How many of these refugees are really seeking a better life, and how many are motivated by ISIS’s vow to wage jihad in Europe?

Also see:

Sweden’s Populist Surge

Muslim immigration has changed the face of Sweden.

Muslim immigration has changed the face of Sweden.

MEF, by Daniel Pipes
The Washington Times
August 26, 2015

According to the most recent poll, the innocuously-named but ferociously anti-establishment Sweden Democrats (Sverigedemokraterna or SD) has the largest support of any political party in Sweden. This news has potentially momentous implications not just for Sweden but for all Europe.

Sweden is a special place. One of the richest and most peaceful countries in the world (it has not been engaged in armed conflict for two centuries), until recently it was a remarkably homogenous society where socialism, with its optimistic assumption that people are born good and circumstances make them bad, worked and the government enjoyed great prestige. Swedish pride in the country’s accomplishments translates into an ethical superiority symbolized by the oft-heard claim to be a “moral superpower.”

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This heritage has also inspired an intolerance of dissent, however; “Be quiet, follow the consensus, let the bureaucrats carry it out.” The country has become so notorious for its stifling faux-unanimity that I actually heard a Dane recently ask at a public forum, “Why has Sweden turned into the North Korea of Scandinavia?”

Swedish history militates against hard-headed, flexible responses to problems.

Also, Sweden’s history creates a no-crisis mentality that militates against the hard-headed, flexible responses needed to cope with current problems the country now faces, especially those connected to waves of mainly Muslim immigrants. As one interlocutor put it to me in Stockholm earlier this month, “Past success has led to current failure.” For example, security in Sweden is well below what might find in a country like Bolivia, with few inclinations to make improvements, rendering Islamist violence all but inevitable.

In this stultification, the SD stands out because it offers the only political alternative. Proof of this came in December 2014, when the SD appeared to have the swing vote in a crucial budget vote between the left and right blocs in the country’s unicameral legislature, the Riksdag – until all the other seven parties joined together in a grand coalition to deny it any influence.

A subway ad in Stockholm illustrates the Sweden Democrats' messaging.

A subway ad in Stockholm illustrates the Sweden Democrats’ messaging.

As this act of desperation suggests, the Sweden Democrats offer a populist – and not, as usually described, a “far right” – brew of policies anathema to all the legacy parties: Foremost, it calls for assimilating legal immigrants, expelling the illegals, and reducing future immigration by at least 90 percent. It also forwards a number of other policies (concerning crime, defense, the European Union, and Israel) far outside the Swedish consensus and utterly obnoxious to the other parties.

With good reason, the establishment hates and fears the SD, pedantically finding any possible fault with the party, starting with its alleged neo-fascist past (though fascist connections are not unique to SD) and going on to the tiniest foibles of its leadership.

Supporting the SD remains taboo. The national police commissioner once tweeted about “vomiting” on seeing the SD’s leader; naturally, his staff dare not acknowledge their supporting for the party. But one officer estimated for me that 50 percent of the police vote SD.

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Despite being ostracized, the SD increasingly connects with Swedes (including some immigrants), giving it substantial electoral gains, roughly doubling its parliamentary vote every four years: from 0.4 percent in 1998 to 1.3 percent in 2002, 2.9 percent in 2006, 5.7 percent in 2010, and 12.9 percent in September 2014. And now, less than a year later, a YouGov poll shows it having nearly doubled again, to 25.2 percent, meaning that it leads the governing Social Democrats (who have only 23.4 percent support) and the major (nominally) right-wing party, the Moderates (with 21 percent).

The political climate in Sweden has shifted. Ideas once outside the mainstream now receive a hearing.

No less important, I learned in Stockholm, the intellectual and political climate has shifted. Journalists, policy specialists, and politicians all noted that ideas outside the mainstream just a year ago now receive a hearing. For example, four major newspapers have questioned the consensus in favor of high immigration. Beside the surging SD vote, this shift results from several factors: the shocking rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which has altered the debate; continued upset at the December compact that excluded the SD from having its due parliamentary influence; and the receding memory of Anders Behring Breivik’s 2011 murderous rampage in Norway.

In all, it appears that denial and censorship can only continue for so long before the instinct of self-preservation kicks in. The Western country most prone to national suicide is possibly waking up from its stupor. If this change can take place in Sweden, the “North Korea of Scandinavia,” it can, and likely will, occur elsewhere in Europe.

Daniel Pipes (DanielPipes.org, @DanielPipes) is president of the Middle East Forum.

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Group With No Jihadi Experience Rehabs ISIS Recruit

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Daily Beast, by Katie Zavadski, August 24, 2015:
The first attempt to de-radicalize an Islamic extremist is happening in Minnesota right now, and it resembles a high school civics class.
An American citizen who pleaded guilty to supporting ISIS was ordered by a federal judge to leave jail—and go to a halfway home instead. That rehab program is run by a group that had no prior experience with would-be Islamic terrorists, The Daily Beast has learned.Abdullahi Yusuf of Minnesota was allowed to depart from jail and stay at a halfway home after he pleaded guilty to conspiring to provide material support to the so-called Islamic State widely known as ISIS in January. (Yusuf was stopped at the airport trying to fly to Turkey in May 2014, at age 18.) Once inside the halfway home, Yusuf was to be “de-radicalized” through regular meetings with a counselor whose curriculum looked more like a high school civics course than religious deprogramming.

His attorney proposed the de-radicalization program and Judge Michael Davis approved it over prosecutors’ objections. In a memorandum, the assistant U.S. attorneys trying Yusuf’s case reiterated their concerns about this program for Yusuf, because they said he had evaded his parents’ supervision and lied to authorities. Nevertheless, Judge Davis released him with an electronic monitoring device around his ankle.

Yusuf was assigned a bed at a halfway house in St. Paul where he could only leave for approved activities—like meetings with his mentors from a civics group called Heartland Democracy.

Heartland director Mary McKinley said she was not exactly sure why Yusuf’s proposal was granted, other than maybe it “just made sense.”

“On the other hand, it was also a surprise that any kind of access was given,” she said. “But I think it says a lot about what the U.S. attorney and the community were trying to do.”

Heartland had no experience with de-radicalizing jihadis, and it was carrying out the government’s first foray into deradicalizing ISIS sympathizers. While government-sanctioned de-radicalization programs for jihadis have existed for years in Canada, Europe, and even Saudi Arabia, the U.S. never faced large numbers of homegrown jihadists until the rise of ISIS. (More than 60 people have been arrested for, charged with, or convicted of ISIS-related crimes so far.)

The U.S. has been trying for years to “counter violent extremism” by fighting the message of terrorists instead of just the terrorists themselves. The State Department launched a Twitter account to push back against ISIS propaganda; the White House proposed better community policing and workshops with the “creative arts community.”

McKinley in court documents proposed adapting Heartland’s existing civics program for gangs to Yusuf.

McKinley said one of the first objectives is to “coach our youth in deep and sustained civic empowerment and ‘real’ civics made accessible, experiential, and multi-dimensional through the Empowering U curriculum and coaching method,” which is the program Heartland Democracy previously used.

In other words: civics for jihadis.

“This is the first time actually, as far as we can tell, that somebody has had the opportunity to be part of something like this,” McKinley told The Daily Beast, though she added that she was reluctant to call what her program does “de-radicalization.”

“I don’t call it that because that’s not what my background is in,” she said. “I guess people could label it as such.”

The judge approved Yusuf’s release in late January. He and a Somali-American mentor began to work through an extensive reading list, which included Richard Wright’s Native Son, a novel about growing up poor and black in the 1930s, and an article by Native American author Sherman Alexie about how poetry freed him from the “reservation” of his mind.

McKinley would not say how often Yusuf met his mentor.

“We met with him regularly, I don’t know the number of times a week,” she said. When pressed on whether they met weekly, biweekly, or at a different pace, McKinley would not clarify. “We met with him regularly.”

Court documents also reference Yusuf meeting with religious leaders, but McKinley wasn’t sure about that.

“I don’t know if he’s met with any religious leaders,” she said in response to a question about meeting with imams. “I mean, he’s an adult, he can get any visitor he wants.”

In April, the halfway house’s inspection of Yusuf’s room turned up a box cutter, which got him kicked out of the home—but not out of rehab.

“He has been continuing with his reading and his writing and his studying in the jail, and now we’ve gotten approval for his mentors to go into the jail to meet with him one on one,” Yusuf’s lawyer, Jean Brandl, told The Daily Beast.

The proposal for Yusuf did not say how anyone would determine whether he’s been de-radicalized.

Read more

Why Does Common Core Require Teaching Islam?

child-globe-360x200Constitution, by Bethany Blankley, August 26, 2015:

Should parents be penalized for demanding that their child be exempted from the required teaching of Islamic in Common Core curriculum? Should a teach or public school administrator penalize parents and children for seeking exemption? Parents are finding out the answers to these questions first hand.

To date, public school students are required to:

Parents must first understand the origins of Common Core, and more importantly assert their First Amendment and Fourteenth Amendment rights– which protect them as parents to make educational decisions for their children.

Technically, Common Core originated from the National Governor’s Association (NGA), Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), Achieve Inc., ACT and the College Board. Its state standards are copyrighted by the NGA and CCSSO, a private company, which means they cannot be changed. (The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the United Nations, and Pearson Education, an NGA donor and CCSSO’s listed business and industry partner, were integral to creating these standards.)

In 2009 the “Race to the Top” federal education initiative encouraged states to receive federal money to adopt new standards that would improve their public school children’s test performance results. In order to participate, members of both state boards of education and state educational professional standards boards voted to adopt Common Core.

However, Common Core really originated from the Connect All Schools program, which is part of the “One World Education” initiative orchestrated by Qatar Foundation International (QFI). The director of QFI’s Research Center for Islamic Legislation and Ethics is Tariq Ramadan, grandson of Hassan al-Banna who was the founder of The Muslim Brotherhood.

QFI enlisted Pearson Education to implement and assess Common Core. Pearson Education is listed on the London and New York Stock Exchange; the Libyan Investment Authority is its largest financial contributor, most recently holding 26 million shares.

According to the Financial Times, the Libyan Investment Authority was founded by Muammar Gaddafi’s son, Seif al-Islam. Along with Qatar, Turkey and Saudi Arabia also invested in the Libyan Investment Authority to fund Pearson Education’s implementation of Common Core.

According to the Guardian, Pearson Education claims it operates in a free market as a public company and has no control over its shareholders’ alleged terrorist-related activities.

Notably, in 2007, two years before the “Race to the Top” initiative, the FBI uncovered documents revealing the goals of the Muslim Brotherhood, which entailed indoctrinating American K-12 students by teaching Islam.

The seized documents were part of a 2007 Holy Land Foundation trial, the largest terrorist-related funding trial in American history. The FBI uncovered an invaluable document, which exposed the Muslim Brotherhood’s manifesto “on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America” (Exhibit 42945 and Exhibit 42946).

In addition to creating Common Core curriculum and standards, Pearson Education also solely evaluates teachers in some states.

In order for New York State, for example, to continue receiving “Race to the Top” federal funds, New York was required to implement “reforms.” Pearson Education now solely administers the Teacher Performance Assessment (TPA).

As a result, New York State no longer evaluates its teachers — a private company does — whose primary investors allegedly finance terrorism and propagate Islam.

To date, no state or federal oversight exists for university programs (under Title VI of the Higher Education Act), which train K-12 teachers to develop lesson plans and seminars on “Middle East Studies.”

Essentially, a non-American public company largely owned by alleged terrorism financiers orchestrated the development and implementation of Common Core, defined and oversees its standards, and evaluates teacher and student performance– not state or federal agencies. 

As a result, the American government handed over public school education to foreign interests. Parents have the Constitutional right to reject both the indoctrination of Islamic teaching of their children by “unreasonable state interferences.”

Bethany Blankley is the Senior Editor for Constitution.com. She hosts “America’s Betrayal” on Renegade Talk Radio Network. Her columns have been published by The Washington Times, Newsday, Western Journalism, Townhall, The Christian Post, Charisma News, and others. She was a former communications strategist to four Senators, one Congressman, one New York governor, and several nonprofits. She holds graduate and undergraduate degrees in Theology and Political Science. Follow her: @bethanyblankley & http://www.bethanyblankley.com.

Explosive accusations against Turkey are exposing a major problem for Obama

REUTERS/Jason Reed

REUTERS/Jason Reed

Business Insider, by NATASHA BERTRAND AND MICHAEL B KELLEY, Aug. 25, 2015:

US-trained rebels allege that Turkish intelligence tipped off Al Qaeda’s al-Nusra Front and orchestrated the kidnapping of US-trained rebels entering Syria, Mitchell Prothero of McClatchy reports.

Though experts immediately advised skepticism of the accusations, the situation typifies the contradictory priorities in the faltering partnership between the US and Turkey against ISIS in Syria.

“All of this speaks to a bigger issue of how Turkey is perceived to have been nurturing the Islamist side of the Syrian insurgency at the expense of Syrian nationalists,” Aaron Stein, a nonresident fellow at the Atlantic Council, told Business Insider.

The US began training a small group of Syrian rebels known as the New Syria Force, or NSF, in early May, on the condition that they focus solely on combating ISIS while refraining from going after forces loyal to Syrian dictator Bashar Assad and his allies.

The program was intended to graduate as many as 2,000 moderate Syrian opposition forces, but only 54 have completed the program so far. In July, the Pentagon’s sent the first NSF graduates, known as Division 30, into Syria to fight ISIS.

The initiative failed spectacularly when the group was attacked by al-Nusra Front, the branch of Al Qaeda operating in Syria, immediately after it entered the country. The Division 30 Syria headquarters was subsequently bombed by Assad’s warplanes.

Map of Syria showing control by cities and areas held as of August 3 as well as a safe zone that the US and Turkey are trying to implement.

Map of Syria showing control by cities and areas held as of August 3 as well as a safe zone that the US and Turkey are trying to implement.

The US-backed rebels now claim that Turkish intelligence leaked information about the NSF’s arrival plans in Syria to al-Nusra. And a Turkish official told McClatchy that the leak would humiliate the Obama administration and push the US to go after both ISIS and Assad’s regime.

But some analysts quickly noted that a leak wasn’t necessary.

“The group itself had advertised its entry into Syria on social media, and it was well known that they were entering through Turkey,” Stein said.

Nevertheless, the accusations underscore Turkey’s alliances with rebel groups — specifically Ahrar al-Sham and al-Nusra — that the US opposes.

A member of al Qaeda's Nusra Front carries his weapon as he squats in the town of the northwestern city of Ariha, after a coalition of insurgent groups seized the area in Idlib province, May 29, 2015.

A member of al Qaeda’s Nusra Front carries his weapon as he squats in the town of the northwestern city of Ariha, after a coalition of insurgent groups seized the area in Idlib province, May 29, 2015.

“Our research has long pointed to a closer Turkish relationship to Ahrar al-Sham and Nusra than to IS. In that sense, this is not surprising,” Jonathan Schanzer, vice president of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, told Business Insider by email.

Stein has previously written about how Turkey “eventually reached out directly to al-Nusra, believing that the rebel group would be useful in achieving its ultimate goal: the overthrow of Assad.”

“Turkey also believed that it could potentially moderate the group and that al-Nusra would be good to work with as a ‘Syrian group’ fighting against the regime for the future of all Syrians,” he added.

The country has even closer ties to Ahrar, which is one of Syria’s largest rebel groups and the one with the most Turkish citizens. And although Ahrar is linked to Nusra, its stated political project is focused on toppling the Assad regime and establishing an Islamic state in Syria.

Read more 

***

FDD VP for Research Jonathan Schanzer discusses Turkey and the growing threat from ISIS. – The John Batchelor Show (Syndicated) – August 20, 2015

Facing Reality on Iran

pic_giant_021415_SM_Obama-Kerry-GNational Review, By John R. Bolton, August 24, 2015:

When Congress returns to Washington in September, it faces one of its most critical decisions in recent years: whether to reject the Vienna nuclear deal and ostensibly stop President Obama from waiving economic sanctions against Iran. Unfortunately, many staunch opponents of the deal, who rightly criticize its debilitating errors, inadequacies, and omissions, nonetheless misapprehend America’s alternatives once Congress acts. They contend that, after blocking Obama’s waiver authority, we should not only maintain the current nonproliferation sanctions but impose stricter ones, both U.S. and even international. Under this theory, Iran would sooner or later be forced to seek new negotiations, in which Washington could extract a better agreement. And in the absence of such an agreement, they argue, “no deal is better than a bad deal.”

This is all fantasy. We have been overtaken by events, no matter how Congress votes.

Obama’s mistakes, concessions, and general detachment from Middle Eastern reality for six and a half years make it impossible to travel in time back to a theoretical world where sanctions might have derailed Iran’s nuclear-weapons program.

If Obama can save the Vienna agreement from Congress, he will lift sanctions for the remainder of his presidency. Alternatively, if his veto is overridden and U.S. sanctions remain in place, Europe, Russia, China, and everyone else will nonetheless proceed to implement the deal on their own. (And given Obama’s propensity not to enforce laws with which he disagrees, which he is already signaling in this case, U.S. sanctions will almost certainly prove ineffective.) Either way, it is naïve to think that a new Republican president in January 2017 will find any takers internationally to revive sanctions.

However Congress votes, Iran will still be marching inexorably toward deliverable nuclear weapons. Deals don’t constrain the mullahs, who see this capability as critical to the 1979 Islamic Revolution’s very survival. Not surprisingly, therefore, existing sanctions have slowed down neither Iran’s nuclear-weapons program nor its support for international terrorism. General James Clapper, Obama’s director of national intelligence, testified in 2013 that sanctions had not changed the ayatollahs’ nuclear efforts, and this assessment stands unmodified today. Tehran’s support for such terrorists as Hezbollah, Hamas, Yemen’s Houthis, and Syria’s Assad regime has, if anything, increased. As for the sanctions’ economic impact on Iran, Clapper testified that “the Supreme Leader’s standard is a level of privation that Iran suffered during the Iran–Iraq war,” a level that Iran was nowhere near in 2013 and is nowhere near today.

RELATED: Is the Iran Deal with Worst Political Blunder of All Time?

In short, to have stopped Tehran’s decades-long quest for nuclear weapons, global sanctions needed to match the paradigm for successful coercive economic measures. They had to be sweeping and comprehensive, swiftly applied and scrupulously adhered to by every major economic actor, and rigorously enforced by military power. The existing Security Council sanctions do not even approach these criteria.

First, the scope of the Iran sanctions’ prohibitions has always been limited, and they have been imposed episodically over an extended period of time, thereby affording Tehran ample opportunity to minimize their impact through smuggling, cheating, and evasion. And while the sanctions’ breadth gradually expanded, the Council’s typical approach was to prohibit trade only in certain items or technologies, or to name specific Iranian businesses, government agencies, or individuals with which U.N. member states were forbidden to do business. This very specificity made sanctions far easier to evade. If, for example, the ABC firm was named to the sanctions list, it took little effort to create a cutout company called XYZ to engage in precisely the same proscribed activities.

Second, key foreign countries are decidedly uneven in adhering to sanctions. Russian and Chinese compliance is notoriously lax, and other countries are worse. Under Iran’s sway, Iraq has been openly and notoriously facilitating Tehran’s oil exports by providing false documentation of Iraqi origin or purchasing Iranian oil for Iraqi domestic consumption, thereby freeing Baghdad’s oil for export. The Obama administration itself repeatedly granted waivers to countries that claimed they needed to import Iranian oil. Although clandestine sanctions violators do not publish audited financial statements, creative criminal minds (and not a few creative entrepreneurial minds) have found enough slack in the sanctions to keep Iran afloat, even if its citizens suffered economically. No one has ever described the ayatollahs as consumer-society-friendly.

RELATED: Obama’s Nuclear Deal with Iran: Worse Than We Could Have Imagined

Finally, it was largely national law-enforcement agencies, rather than military forces, that monitored the sanctions. Unsurprisingly, the quality of such efforts varied greatly, and the Security Council hardly matches the Pentagon in command-and-control authority.

In recent history, the only sanctions regime to approximate the ideal paradigm was that imposed on Saddam Hussein in 1990, just days after Iraq invaded Kuwait. Security Council Resolution 661 provided that all states “shall prevent . . . the import into their territories of all commodities and products originating in Iraq or Kuwait” except food, medicine, and humanitarian supplies. That is the very definition of “comprehensive,” and the polar opposite of the congeries of sanctions imposed on Iran.

Significantly, while Resolution 661 approached the theoretical ideal, even its sanctions failed to break Saddam’s stranglehold on Kuwait. Had Washington waited much longer than it did before militarily ousting Saddam, Kuwait would have been thoroughly looted and despoiled.

RELATED: The Iran Deal Appeases the Greatest Evil of Our Time

Thus, even strict, comprehensive, rigorously enforced sanctions are not necessarily enough to stop a determined adversary. Other critically important conditions, such as a truly credible threat of military force, must accompany sanctions. In 1990–91, the United States and a multinational coalition presented just such a credible threat, but Saddam nonetheless refused to back down, resulting in his humiliating military defeat. In 2002–03, Saddam yet again faced a credible military threat and again refused to back down. He thereupon not only lost militarily but also lost his regime and ultimately his life. Does anyone truly believe that Barack Obama’s fainthearted utterances that “all options are on the table” carry a credible threat to the mullahs, or that their hearing is any better than Saddam’s?

Finally, there must be a U.S. negotiator who knows how to negotiate. In 1990–91, Secretary of State James Baker made every effort to find a diplomatic solution meeting U.S. criteria, including a last-minute Geneva meeting with Iraqi foreign minister Tariq Aziz. Baker was prepared to try diplomacy but not prepared to concede the key point: immediate Iraqi withdrawal from Kuwait. His successors under Obama didn’t have that steel, and the results show.

Read more

Also see:

Alice Linahan and Frank Gaffney on Civilization Jihad and the Common Core

Alice Linahan is preparing to launch her book,”A Community’s Journey from #CANiSEE to I Can See”; a lecture series providing a comprehensive study of the 21st Century/Workforce Development/Common Core Take Over of Education. fundrazr.com/campaigns/0zsc8

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In this video Alice Linahan and Frank Gaffney share critical facts about Civilization Jihad and the Common Core.

As defined in the book “Sharia, a Threat to America”- “Civilization jihad is a form of political and psychological warfare that includes multi-layered cultural subversion, the co-opting of senior leaders, influence operations, propaganda and other means of insinuating shariah gradually into Western societies.”

In the West a fundamental shift is beginning to be felt, as the American idea of individual freedom clashes with the political purpose of control and submission. The outcome will depend on if individuals refuse to submit.

***

ALICE LINAHAN, Vice President of Women on the Wall speaks with Frank Gaffney on Secure Freedom Radio November 24, 2014:

  • Effects of Obama’s Common Core curriculum on the U.S. education system
  • Controversy regarding Islamists penetrating the U.S. educational system and advancing Sharia ideology through Common Core
  • Looking at Arabic-immersion schools in Texas and around the U.S.

Also see:

Inside Jihad

taw

Frontpage, by Danusha V. Goska, August 24, 2015:

Here’s my four-sentence review of Dr. Tawfik Hamid’s new book Inside Jihad: How Radical Islam Works; Why It Should Terrify Us; How to Defeat It. Buy this book. Read this book. Refer to this book. Share this book.

I’ve read and reviewed counter-jihad classics by bestselling experts including Robert Spencer, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Bernard Lewis, Andrew Bostom, Wafa Sultan, Brigitte Gabriel, Mosab Hassan Yousef, and Phyllis Chesler. I think highly of each. This is how good Inside Jihad is. If someone said to me, “I want to read just one book about jihad.” I’d give that reader Dr. Hamid’s book.

Inside Jihad is brief. Hamid’s style is direct and fast-paced. He says what he needs to say without sensationalism, emotionality, literary ambition, or apologies. He pulls no punches.

Tawfik Hamid was born and raised in Egypt, the most populous Middle Eastern country. He was raised Muslim. Hamid’s mother was a teacher; his father, a surgeon and a private atheist who taught him to respect Christians and Jews. The family observed the Ramadan fast but had little other religious observance. Arabic is his first language and he has studied the Koran in the original Arabic. From 1979-82, he was a member of Jamaa Islamiya, a terrorist group. He met Ayman al-Zawahiri, the current leader of al-Qaeda.

Hamid grew up under Gamal Abdel Nasser’s pan-Arab socialism. Nasser wanted to modernize Egypt. He suppressed the Muslim Brotherhood, executed one of its leaders, Sayyid Qutb, and curtailed travel to and from Saudi Arabia, fearing Wahhabi influence.

The 1973 Oil Embargo sparked a revival of Islam. Muslims concluded that Allah rewarded Saudi Arabia for the Saudis’ strict religious observance. Allah’s reward was the Saudi ability to humble the United States.

Islamization in Egypt “started mildly enough.” Hamid warns the reader to pay careful attention to slow Islamization. He says that the same methods that were used in Egypt are now being used in the West. “The more we surrender” he warns “the more Islamists will demand.”

The camel’s nose under the tent was something few could object to: individual prayer. Previously, if an employee interrupted his workday to perform one of Islam’s mandated five daily prayers, it was perceived as bizarre. Now it was admirable.

Another straw in the wind: the hijab. In school photos taken before the 1970s, many Egyptian girls are without hijab. After America’s humbling in the oil shock, more and more girls began to wear hijab. Men stopped wearing gold wedding bands; gold was deemed “un Islamic” for men. More toxic Islamizations, including Jew-hatred, followed. Imams preached that Jews are monkeys and pigs and that they poisoned Mohammed.

Islamization on campus also began in an innocuous way: Islamists used the moments before class began to talk about Islam. One day, the Christian professor of one class said that it was time for discussion of Islam to stop and the academic hour to begin. The Islamists called the professor an infidel and broke his arm. “The Christian students were terrified,” Hamid reports.

“I remember the first time I looked at a Christian with disdain,” Hamid reminisces. He was reading a required textbook. The book told him that Mohammed said, “I have been instructed by Allah to declare war and fight all mankind until they say ‘No God except Allah and Mohammed is the prophet of Allah.'” Hamid, who had previously had Christian friends, turned to a Christian student and said, “If we applied Islam correctly, we should be doing this to you.”

Jamaa Islamiya actively recruited medical students like Hamid. It took six months for Hamid to become “sufficiently indoctrinated.”

Hamid details several lures that recruiters used to bring young people into their movement:

  • fear of hell,
  • a demonization of critical thinking,
  • a sense of superiority over non-Muslims,
  • suppression of any emotional life outside of Islamism,
  • suppression of sexual expression,
  • a promise of sex for jihadis,
  • and upholding of Mohammed as the perfect example, beyond criticism.

Author Don Richardson estimates that one in eight verses in the Koran mentions Hell. By contrast, the Old Testament mentions Hell once in every 774 verses, and it is never described as graphically as it is described in the Koran. Hamid quotes Islamists using many Koranic passages that vividly describe Hell to terrorize potential members: “garments of fire shall be cut out for them … burning water will be poured over their heads causing all that is within their bodies as well as the skins to melt away … they shall be held by iron grips; and every time they try in their anguish to come out of it, they shall be returned and told ‘Taste suffering through fire to the full!'” Infidels in Hell will eat thorns and drink scalding water as if they were “female camels raging with thirst and disease.” Their intestines will be cut to pieces.

Another method used to Islamize recruits was “al-fikr kufr” – “one becomes an infidel by thinking critically.”

Recruiters flattered recruits, telling them that they were superior to non-Muslims. “Take not Jews and Christians for friends,” they quoted from Koran 5:51. Jews are monkeys and pigs: Koran 5:60. Those who worship Jesus are infidels: Koran 5:17. Do not offer the greeting “As-salamu alaykum,” or “peace be with you,” to Christians or Jews; whenever you meet Christians or Jews in a road, force them to its narrowest alley: Sahih Muslim. Muslims who did not carry out jihad were also inferior.

Terror recruits’ emotional outlets were cut off. They were forbidden from creating or consuming music, dance, or visual art. They were discouraged from having sex, but lured with promises of great sex in paradise. The houris – dark-eyed virgins – are graphically described in Muslim literature as very soft, without complaint, and easily satisfied. Houris regain their virginity immediately after sex. Men are promised organs that never go limp. Mohammed, recruits were assured, could have sex with eleven women in an hour.

Finally, the example of Mohammed himself was not to be questioned. Mohammed married a six-year-old. He raped war captives, in one case immediately after decapitating the captive’s brother and father and after she had witnessed her mother being carried off also to be raped. Mohammed approved of the dismemberment of Um Kerfa, a poetess who criticized him. Mohammed is the “perfect example, worthy of emulation.” Muslims today must unquestioningly approve these behaviors.

Hamid’s fellow extremists were aware that Muslim countries were no longer in the cultural forefront. Islam had spread as far as Spain and India in only the first century after Mohammed’s death. Terror recruits believed that early Islam’s success was caused by strict adherence to Islamic doctrine. They believed that their strict observance could bring back Islam’s early dominance.

Some wonder how women could be recruited into a movement that keeps them in an inferior position in relation to men. Hamid clarifies: Muslimahs were told that they would be superior – to infidel women.

Hamid expounds uncompromisingly on the power and importance of hijab. He insists that when prominent Westerners such as Nancy Pelosi and Laura Bush travel to Muslim countries and wear hijab, they are making a grave error. Hijab is not “a neutral, or merely traditional, fashion statement.” Hijab’s purpose “is not modesty or to encourage observers to focus on a Muslim woman’s personality.” Hijab exists to proclaim “deep Islamic doctrinal connections to slavery and discrimination. Western women who cover themselves are unwittingly endorsing an inhumane system.” Hijab’s purpose, Hamid argues persuasively, is to create a society where superior free Muslimahs are visually distinct from inferior infidel slave women.

Islamists “despise women who did not wear hijab. We considered them vain … we believed they would burn in Hell.” Further, “the hijab serves to differentiate between slave girls and women who are considered free … it creates a feeling of superiority among the women who wear it.” The Koran promises that women who wear hijab will not be “molested.” Women without hijab are slaves and can be raped without guilt.

Australia’s foremost Muslim cleric restated this Islamist position in 2006. In Sydney, fourteen Muslim men gang-raped non-Muslim women. Sheikh Taj el-Din al-Hilali said that it was the victims’ fault. “If you take out uncovered meat” and cats eat it, the cats are not to blame. Women possess “igraa,” “the weapon of enticement.”

Hamid emphasizes that hijab is both vanguard and emblem of Islamic supremacy. During their 1953 meeting, the first thing Sayyid Qutb asked Nasser to do was to force women to wear hijab. A YouTube video documents this conversation. In the video, Nasser is speaking to a large assembly. When he repeats Qutb’s demand, the crowd laughs. One wag shouts out, “Let him wear it!” Nasser points out that Qutb’s own daughter does not wear hijab. The crowd laughs even more, and bursts into applause. This video is at least fifty years old. It is a reminder that fifty years ago, countries like Egypt and Iran were modernizing. Women, in cities at least, could be seen in public in miniskirts and without hijab.

Hamid reports that the Muslim Brotherhood does not announce its end goal openly. “They pose as peacemakers … The Muslim Brotherhood will accept circumstances that offend their beliefs – temporarily – if doing so will advance their goals.” They will – temporarily – permit western dress for women and alcohol consumption. This is all part of taqiyya. The Muslim Brotherhood has a four stage plan: at first, merely preach. Then, move on to participation in public life. Next, consolidate power “while faking legitimacy.” Finally, enforce sharia.

A few turning points turned Hamid away from Islamism, for example, when a fellow terror recruit described his plot to bury alive an Egyptian police officer.

Hamid had been studying the Bible so that he could better debate Christians. Jesus’ words haunted him. “What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” He asked himself, what profit to Islam if it subjugated the entire world but lost its soul? “Exposure to the Bible was crucial in helping me question the violent aspects of Salafist teaching.”

His medical studies also gave him pause. “I wondered if the divine DNA molecule was violent. Did it attempt to conquer the rest of the cell? Did it try to force other cellular components to behave like itself? It did not. Rather, it worked harmoniously within an organism to create and sustain life.”

The clincher for Hamid was “the existence of alternative forms of Islamic teaching.” Hamid met Muslims called “Quranics,” who reject the hadiths. The Quranics “stood against killing apostates, against stoning women for adultery, against killing gays. They viewed the Islamic Conquests as immoral and senseless.” The Quranics “allowed me to think critically.” “If this alternative sect had not been available, it would have been much more difficult for me to resist jihadism.”

Read more

Russia’s Playing A Double Game With Islamic Terror

Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast,Anadolu Agency

Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast,Anadolu Agency

Daily Beast, by Michael Weiss, August 23, 2015:

Even as America touts its counterterrorism partnerships with Russia, evidence points to the FSB directly feeding Dagestanis to ISIS.
It is an article of faith among the many critics of the current Russian government that, however unpleasant Vladimir Putin may be, he is still a necessary partner in one crucial field of U.S. foreign policy: cooperation in the war on Islamic terrorism.

Proof, if it were needed, for how valued this cooperation is among U.S. policymakers came in the conspicuous absence of Alexander Bortnikov, the director of the Federal Security Service (FSB), Russia’s domestic intelligence agency, from sanctions levied by the Treasury Department against Russian officials. The sanctions targeted bureaucrats involved in both the invasion and occupation of Crimea and the unacknowledged maskirovka war that Moscow is still waging in eastern Ukraine—a war that has drawn amply on the resources of the FSB and has included several “former” FSB officers in on the battlefield. Not only was Bortnikov not sanctioned, he was invited by the White House last February as a guest to President Obama’s three-day conference on “countering violent extremism,” whereas the current FBI director, James Comey, was not.

That conference was held principally because of the international threat posed byISIS and the coalition war against it in Syria and Iraq, not to mention the Chechen identity of the Tsarnaev brothers, perpetrators of the 2013 Boston marathon bombings. Bortnikov’s presence was a mutual recognition by the U.S. and Russia that fighting jihadism is a shared challenge between two countries now embroiled in a pitched stand-off over the fate of Europe and much else.

Maxim Shemetov/Reuters

Maxim Shemetov/Reuters

Yet a recent investigation conducted by Novaya Gazeta, one of the few independent newspapers left in Russia, complicates this cozy tale of counterterrorist cooperation. Based on extensive fieldwork in one village in the North Caucasus, reporter Elena Milashina has concluded that the “Russian special services have controlled” the flow of jihadists into Syria, where they have lately joined up not only with ISIS but other radical Islamist factions. In other words, Russian officials are added to the ranks of terrorists which the Russian government has deemed a collective threat to the security and longevity of its dictatorial ally on the Mediterranean, Bashar al-Assad.

It may sound paradoxical—helping the enemy of your friend—but the logic is actually straightforward: Better the terrorists go abroad and fight in Syria than blow things up in Russia. Penetrating and coopting terrorism also has a long, well-attested history in the annals of Chekist tradecraft.

Milashina makes her case study the village of Novosasitili in Dagestan’s Khasavyurt district. Since 2011, nearly one percent of the total population of Novosasitili has gone to Syria—22 out of 2,500 residents. Of that figure, five were killed and five have returned home. But they didn’t leave Russia, a country notoriously difficult to enter and exit, without outside help. The FSB established a “green corridor” to allow them to migrate first to Turkey, and then into Syria. (Russians, including those living in the North Caucasus, can catch any of the daily non-stop flights to Istanbul and visit Turkey without a visa.)

“I know someone who has been at war for 15 years,” Akhyad Abdullaev, head of the village, tells Milashina. “He fought in Chechnya, Afghanistan, Iraq, and now in Syria. He surely cannot live peacefully. If such people go off to war, it’s no loss. In our village there is a person, a negotiator. He, together with the FSB, brought several leaders out of the underground and sent them off abroad on jihad. The underground resistance has been weakened, we’re well off. They want to fight—let them fight, just not here.”

Milashina next interviews the “negotiator” Abdullaev mentions. He tells her of his role as an intermediary between the FSB and local militants in arranging the latter’s departure to the Levant. In 2012, for instance, he helped arrange for a man known as the “Emir of the northern sector”—a “very dangerous man,” believed by the FSB to have been behind several terrorist bombings—to go to Turkey if he agreed to quit jihadism in Dagestan. The FSB gave the Emir a passport and acted as his travel agent. The condition was that he’d deal exclusively with the FSB and not inform any of his confederates of his true sponsor. The Emir has since been killed in Syria, but the “negotiator” tells the journalist that he’s subsequently brought another five militants to the FSB who benefited from the same quid pro quo arrangement. “This was in 2012,” he says. “Just before the Syrian path opened up. More precisely, [the FSB] opened it.”

Tanya Lokshina, the Russia program director and a senior researcher at Human Rights Watch, told The Daily Beast that while she can neither confirm nor deny the allegations put forward in Novaya Gazeta, “It is also evident that [Russian] law enforcement and security agencies are proud of the fact that the number of casualties in armed clashes between insurgent forces and security has declined very significantly by some 50 percent. Officials attribute it to the success of the government in fighting the insurgency; in reality, it seems the drop derives from the fact that all the aggressive, competent fighters are no longer fighting in Dagestan but are in Syria as part of ISIS.”

Mike Rogers, a former U.S. representative and the chair of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, told The Daily Beast that the FSB might be turning a “blind eye” to jihadist outflow to Syria. “The only reason I say that is that they could alert Assad’s folks to get them once they’re in Syria,” Rogers said. “But for me, the idea of getting them out of town doesn’t make sense because they know they get combat training and come back home.”

However, a former CIA operative who has liaised with the FSB in Tajikistan told The Daily Beast that such concerns wouldn’t necessarily stop a clandestine conveyor belt of extremists out of Russia, which is hardly unique to Putin’s regime. “It’s perfectly conceivable that the FSB would take their most violent types and say, ‘Yeah, you want your caliphate? Go set it up in Raqqa.’ The Saudis did this in the 80s with the Afghans. It’s sort of tried and true. We could do the same thing. Of course, we’re not.”

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