Islamist running 140 tax-funded charter schools in U.S.

Muhammad Fethullah Gulen heads a global empire of schools and Islamic cultural centers and is one of Turkey’s most influential spiritual leaders. He lives in exile in the United States and has 140 charters schools in 26 states.

Muhammad Fethullah Gulen heads a global empire of schools and Islamic cultural centers and is one of Turkey’s most influential spiritual leaders. He lives in exile in the United States and has 140 charters schools in 26 states.

WND, by Leo Hohmann, Jan. 17, 2016:

Muhammad Fethullah Gülen is a Turkish Islamist, writer and preacher with a secret plan for bringing Shariah law to America.

Arguably Turkey’s most influential spiritual leader of the past 50 years, Gülen left that country in the late 1990s and now directs his cult-like Islamic movement from a guarded compound in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania.

Part of his empire consists of a thriving network of more than 140 charter schools in 26 states that sell themselves to parents as a secular and more academically rigorous alternative to public schools.

As the second largest chain of charter schools in the United States, Gülen schools rake in tens of millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars every year.

But the schools — which have innocent-sounding names like the Horizon Science Academies in Illinois, Harmony Schools of Excellence in Texas, Dove Science Academies in Oklahoma and Magnolia Science Academies in California — have long been the subject of investigations into alleged corruption scandals involving influence peddling and visa abuse.

USA Today reported recently that the Gülen faith movement secretly funded 200 overseas trips for congressional lawmakers and staff since 2008.

“Turkish leaders have asked the United States to extradite Gülen from the remote compound in rural Pennsylvania where he has lived for 20 years.

The movement has founded hundreds of charter schools across the United States and around the world, has its own media organizations, and was deeply entrenched with the Turkish regime until a falling out two years ago. That led President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to declare Gülen was running ‘a parallel state’ inside the country with the intent of undermining the government.”

Critics argue that the schools also covertly engage in Islamic missionary outreach, usually after-hours or during school extra-curricular activities.

Anti-Shariah activist Pam Geller says Gülen has been dubbed “the Turkish Khomeini” for a reason.

“It has been widely reported for years that he wants ultimately to restore the Islamic caliphate in Turkey. That alone should make his charter schools in the U.S. a subject of law enforcement scrutiny, but it largely hasn’t,” Geller told WND. “There have been allegations that funds from these schools have gone to a Turkish Islamization movement, Hizmet. The U.S. government shouldn’t be funding Gülen’s schools; it should be investigating them and shutting them down.”

See list of 140 Gülen charter schools in 26 states.

See sampling of state and federal grants to Gülen schools.

Most of the parents of students who attend Gülen charter schools have no idea about Gülen’s background as a Turkish Islamist and believer in civilizational jihad — which is a form of nonviolent jihad focused on infiltrating and overcoming Western nations over time through immigration and exploitation of the civil liberties available in those nations.

But a new book on Gülen and his U.S. schools hopes to blow the lid on his cloak of secrecy.

GulenClare Lopez, co-author with Christopher Holton of “Gülen and the Gulenist Movement: Turkey’s Islamic Supremacist Cult and its Contributions to Civilizational Jihad,” says the movement is extremely secretive but there’s no small amount of information for those willing to dig. She and Holton decided to peel back the layers.

“There have been many articles and of course the movement itself puts out a great deal of material and Fethullah Gülen himself is a prolific author of articles and books,” Lopez told WND.

Lopez, who is vice president of research and analysis for the Center for Security Policy, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank operated by former Defense Department analyst Frank Gaffney, said Gulen is “fundamentally jihadist in outlook,” while promoting orthodox Islamic tenets within a worldwide movement.

Gulen is also heavily involved in the global interfaith movement, which seeks to build bridges between the major faiths of Christianity, Islam and Judaism.

“While not very well known by many Americans he is nevertheless quite influential and works through the schools, cultural organizations and the media to promote not only the orthodox teachings of Islam, but also a positive outlook towards Turkey,” Lopez said. “We’re concerned about its influence on our children, civic leaders and elected officials.”

Listen to Clare Lopez talk about the subject of her new book, the shadowy Gülen movement.

Traditionally the centers of Islam have been based in Saudi Arabia for Sunnis and Iran for Shiites.

But Turkey has always been the wild card. Students of history will recall that it served as the head of the Ottoman Empire for more than 500 years, but crashed and burned in the aftermath of World War I and was steered into a more Western mindset by Ataturk.

Under Erdogan’s AKP party, however, that has all changed, as documented in the film “End Times Eyewitness” by Christian author and filmmaker Joel Richardson.

Erdogan has overturned the secularized Western influence that had banned the hijab and the fez in public places and eliminated the many Shariah-compliant restrictions placed on society.

Asylum in American

Gülen’s cultural empire, including his schools and media companies, had a lot to do with the return of Islamist values in Turkey. But Gülen lost out on the political power struggle and in 1998 fled to the U.S., where he was offered asylum.

In the U.S., Gülen schools are not outwardly Islamic. Any influence in that regard is subtle, Lopez said.

map-of-gulen-organizations-in-US

But he has become expert at buying influence from politicians in Washington and in state Capitols.

“There have been many allegations of abuse of the visa system, kickbacks in salaries, and attempted influencing of school administrators, parents and teachers, journalists, priests and rabbis, everyone,” Lopez said.

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In 2013 Gülen and Erdogan had a final falling out.

“These are two powerful men each intent on seizing power for themselves, not that they disagree in any way over the direction to take Turkey, which is away from the West and toward the neo-Ottoman Islamic caliphate,” Lopez says.

The U.S. gave Gülen legal permanent resident status in 2008, and he is now eligible for citizenship.

Soaking the U.S. taxpayer

The amount of public taxpayer money Gulen’s charter schools receive every year runs into the tens of millions. A charter school is essentially operated like a private school only it receives taxpayer funding and does not answer to any widely elected school board.

“There’s all kinds of charter schools in the U.S. that receive taxpayer funding and that is how the Gulen movement has developed its network of schools in the U.S., making them attractive by making them STEM schools, which parents love,” Lopez said.

And when Congress passed the re-authorization of No Child Left Behind late last year, it included increased funding for taxpayer-funded charter schools run by unelected boards.

“Gulen Charter Schools exemplify the unconstitutionality of tax-funded school choice,” writes Charlotte Iserbyt, a former education adviser to President Ronald Reagan, in her blog, “The ABCs of Dumb Down.”

“There is no citizen accountability or oversight,” Iserbyt says. “No wonder there is corruption. Those who think that charters are the solution for Common Core, forget it.”

And for all of the taxpayer money flooding into the Gülen schools, most of the teaching positions go to foreigners who come to the U.S. on H-1B guest-worker visas from Turkey. This is the visa program that GOP presidential hopeful Sen. Marco Rubio wants to expand through his I-Squared bill, tripling the cap on such visas from about 66,000 per year to 195,000 per year.

“To the best of my knowledge in all the research I’ve done, I don’t see that the Gülen schools are being accused of teaching Islamic ideology in the schools, that’s not the issue, rather it’s the abuse of H-1B visa system to bring in Turkish teachers instead of hiring Americans,” Lopez said. “There is alleged abuse of the teachers who are required to kick back a percentage of their salaries, and they do teach a cultural emphasis on Turkey and Islam.”

Charges of influence peddling

The schools also are known for offering lavish, all-expenses paid trips to Turkey for friendly politicians at the state, local and federal level.

The USA Today investigation accuses the Gülen movement of falsifying its funding of trips for U.S. congressional members.

Lopez said teachers and parents have complained that the schools’ main purpose is to promote a love not only for Turkish culture but Islam.

“You’ll see in the book former teachers or people who’ve broken away from the movement who say there is an attempt to inculcate a positive view of Turkey and Islamic culture,” she said.

An Islamist with a hidden agenda

Joel Richardson is a Bible teacher, author and documentary filmmaker.

Joel Richardson is a Bible teacher, author and documentary filmmaker.

Richardson, the Christian author and filmmaker, said Gülen is without a doubt an Islamist with an hidden agenda. His strategy mirrors that of the Muslim Brotherhood, which advocates non-violent civilizational jihad as the means to infiltrate and influence Western societies.

“In the past, he has made very overt comments about the need to infiltrate the arteries of the system and so forth,” Richardson told WND. “On the other hand, he is definitely non-violent and has furthered the idea, popular within some of the Turkish-Islamist movement of non-violent Islamism.”

Erdogan struck harshly against the Gülen movement in Turkey, rooting numerous Gülen supporters out of the government and throwing them in prison. Erdogan has called for the U.S. to extradite Gülen for allegedly subverting the Turkish government.

“In terms of the danger that Gülen represents to the United States, I would say that five years ago, Gülen and his charter schools were a bigger concern,” Richardson said. “They still need to be defunded by the U.S. government. Today, however, compared to the much larger dangers we are facing, including the very real Islamists that Obama has allowed into the U.S. government, or the very real, very violent Islamists that have infiltrated the country, Gülen, with his ideological jihad, is a relatively small fish, in an ever-expanding pond of violent Islamists.”

Lopez said the Gülen movement helped drag Turkey back to its Islamic roots and so his influence should not be under-estimated in the U.S., and certainly should not be given taxpayer funding.

“Look what’s happened to Turkey, the Islamists were voted in, and Erdogan is on a neo-Ottoman path to take Turkey back to its roots as a jihadist state, so I think there is ever good reason to be concerned about his activities (in the U.S.),” Lopez said.

The United West: Clinton-Obama Benghazi Gun Running Operation Exposed

benghazi-obama-hillaryBreitbart, Jan. 13, 2016:

(THE UNITED WEST) Clare Lopez of the Center for Security Policy, a member of the Benghazi Citizen’s Commission and former CIA intelligence officer, exposes Benghazi as a complete national security disaster resulting from the lack of leadership from President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

In part one, Lopez explains in simple detail exactly how the United States,  led by Clinton, aligned itself with the Muslim Brotherhood in a way that defies common sense and basic principles of foreign policy. The United West presents this three-part series as a national security context to better understand the blockbuster Hollywood movie, 13 Hours, the Secret Soldiers of Benghazi.

In part two, Clare explains in simple detail exactly how the United States, lead by Hillary Clinton, aligned itself with the Muslim Brotherhood in a way that defies common sense and basic principles of foreign policy when she blamed a You Tube video for the massacre in Benghazi:

Part 3 of 3: CLARE LOPEZ EXPOSES BENGHAZI & CLINTON & BLUMENTHALS!
Clare Lopez chronicles how Hillary Clinton created and plotted the video narrative to deflect attention away from the State Department’s illegal gun running operation in Benghazi. This segment examines emails from Sidney Blumenthal, a personal confidant of the Clinton’s, which are designed to place the blame of the Benghazi attack NOT of the Obama/Clinton Administration but on the foolish video “Innocence of Muslims.” In an almost unbelievable disinformation moment, Sidney leads Hillary to use his son Max’s article about the video as the cause of the attack. Do not miss this segment of the Benghazi series, “What Difference Does it Make,” where Clare Lopez and Tom Trento deconstruct the Blumenthal/Clinton act of treason.

Hillary’s Benghazi Stand-Down Order Exposed

secret-soldiersFrontpage, by  Kenneth R. Timmerman, January 13, 2016:

A preview by Benghazi security officer Kris “Tanto” Paronto of 13 Hours, the block-buster Michael Bay film that premieres on Thursday, raises dramatic new questions about the refusal by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to authorize a military rescue of the besieged U.S. diplomatic facility and the nearby CIA Annex on Sept 11-12, 2012.

In a presentation at a conference organized by the Maryland Citizen Action Network last weekend, Paronto revealed that two AC-130H “Spectre” gunships were “on call” that night, both within range of Benghazi.

One of them was a six-hour flight away, co-located with a U.S. special operations team in Djibouti.

The other was at Naval Air Station Sigonella, in Sicily. “That’s a 45-minute flight,” Paronto said.

The Spectre gunship with its 25mm rapid-fire gatling guns, its 40 mm precision Bofors gun, and its 105mm canon is “good in urban warfare because you have little collateral damage,” Paronto explained.

In fact, it was just what the beleaguered security team needed. They could see the jihadis advancing on the Annex compound throughout the night and lit them up with lasers, which the airborne crew could have used for precision targeting purposes. On-line videos of the Spectre gunship in operation show that it can walk its cannons up narrow streets, killing fighters while leaving the surrounding buildings intact and people inside them unharmed.

“I asked for the Spectre and ISR [an armed Predator drone] at 9:37 pm,” Paronto said, certain that the attacks actually started at 9:32 pm local time, not 9:42 pm as previously reported. “At midnight, they told us they were still working on getting us that Spectre gunship. Not that it was not available, but that they were still working on it.”

And there were more forces immediately available for a rescue effort, in particular, the European Command (EUCOM) Commander’s In-Extremis Force, which was then on a counter-terrorism training mission in Croatia, a 3 hour flight from Benghazi.

Paronto knew people in that unit, and remembers calling them after he and his security team got back to the CIA Annex from the diplomatic compound, where they had just rescued the surviving U.S. personnel. “They were loading their gear into their aircraft and ready to go,” he recalled.

Later, his friends in the unit told him they had been shut down sometime after midnight.

All evidence now points to a specific stand-down order issued by Secretary Clinton, since the Libyan facilities came under her direct authority. Without a specific request for assistance from the State Department, the Pentagon was powerless to act.

Last month, the State Department released a critical email, sent at 7:09 pm Washington time (1:09 am Benghazi time) from Jeremy Bash, a top aide to Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, informing Mrs. Clinton’s office of various military assets that were “spinning up as we speak” to deploy to Benghazi.

Among those assets were C-110 in Croatia, two U.S. Marine Corps Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team (FAST) platoons based in Rota, Spain, the Spectre gunships, armed Predator drones, and possibly elements of Marine Expeditionary Units in the Mediterranean and the Red Sea.

In preparation for deploying C-110 directly to Benghazi from Croatia, General Carter Ham, commander-in-chief of Africa Command (AFRICOM), issued orders transferring authority for C-110 to him from European Command (EUCOM).

General Ham was doing what any smart U.S. military officer would have done, by laying the ground work for a formal order he expected to come down an hour or two later.

“Assuming Principals agree to deploy these elements, we will ask State to secure the approval from host nation,” Bash wrote. “Please advise how you wish to convey that approval to us.”

When Bash sent that email, Paronto and his team-mates had just fought off an assault on the Annex by twenty or more well-armed jihadis. They would continue to fight throughout the night, as larger and increasingly brazen groups of jihadis gathered in dark areas beyond the Annex the security officers referred to as “Zombiland.”

They certainly could have used the support from the Spectre gunship, or the arrival of forty or so well-armed Special Operations combat specialists from C-110.

To date, the State Department has not released any reply from Mrs. Clinton’s office to Bash’s 7:09 PM request. However, we know from the testimony of the top U.S. diplomat in Tripoli at the time, Greg Hicks, that the State Department never requested country clearance from Libya for any U.S. forces that night.

And when the orders finally went out from Panetta’s office an hour later, they included a retransfer of C-110 from AFRICOM back to EUCOM, along with orders for the unit to move to Sigonella the next day and hold in place, instead of flying to Benghazi.

In other words, because Mrs. Clinton refused to authorize those forces to deploy into Libya to assist State Department personnel and State Department facilities, Panetta had no other choice but to put them on hold.

“The State Department was concerned that an overt U.S. military presence in Libya could topple the government,” a senior AFRICOM commander involved in that night’s events told me. “They were in denial. They wanted a narrative that al Qaeda was on the run. Instead, four Americans died.”

With the release of the Bash email and 13 Hours, Mrs. Clinton’s cover has been blown.

I also asked Paronto last weekend if he had heard reports of an Iranian Quds Force presence in Benghazi, as I had been hearing from numerous U.S. military intelligence sources, including senior AFRICOM commanders.

“Everyone knew the Iranians were there,” he replied. “Especially once the Red Cross [Red Crescent] team from Iran was ‘kidnapped’ in Benghazi [on July 31] by Ansar al-Sharia, we knew about them and were tracking them.”

As I reported in Dark Forces: the Truth About What Happened in Benghazi, U.S. military and civilian intelligence agencies produced between 50 to 60 reports on the Iranian presence in Benghazi and Derna in 2012, and Iran’s deep involvement with Ansar al-Sharia, the group that claimed responsibility for the Benghazi attacks. Multiple FOIA requests seeking copies of these reports from the National Director of Intelligence and from AFRICOM have gone without response.

It’s time to remove the wraps of secrecy from those reports as well, so the American public can finally learn the truth about who plotted, organized and paid for the Benghazi attacks.

Kenneth Timmerman is the New York Times best-selling author of “Dark Forces: the Truth About What Happened in Benghazi,” and other books.

Also see:

BOOK RELEASE: The Gulen Movement: Turkey’s Islamic Supremacist Cult and its Contributions to the Civilization Jihad

Center for Security Policy, Dec. 18, 2015:

ISLAMIC SUPREMACISM DOES BUSINESS IN U.S. VIA A TURKISH CULT:

GULEN MOVEMENT IS AN ENGINE FOR ‘CIVILIZATION JIHAD’

It has become increasingly apparent that the United States is not only confronting a violent effort by Islamic supremacists to impose the program they call shariah on the rest of the world, Muslim and non-Muslim, alike. Dangerous as jihadist terrorism is, America – and the rest of the Free World, for that matter – also face what amounts to a pre-violent assault.

The Muslim Brotherhood calls this stealthy, seditious effort to “destroy us from within” a “civilization jihad.” One of its prime practitioners in this country is the Gulen Movement, a cult/business empire led by a reclusive Turkish expatriate, Fethullah Gulen, who operates from within an armed camp in the Poconos.

This movement and its penetration of our country is the subject of an important new monograph published as part of the Center for Security Policy’s Civilization Jihad Reader Series: The Gulen Movement: Turkey’s Islamic Supremacist Cult and Its Contribution to Civilization Jihad in America. It is co-authored by two members of the Center’s senior leadership team: Vice President for Outreach Christopher Holton and Clare Lopez, Vice President for Research and Analysis.

As The Gulen Movement monograph makes clear, one of the most troubling aspects of this cult is its success in advancing the Islamic supremacist agenda – albeit under the guise of Turkish nationalism – via one of the fastest-growing networks of publicly funded charter schools in the United States.GulenMovmentcrop

Fethullah Gulen is wanted on multiple international arrest warrants issued by the regime of his one-time ally, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Here in the United States, government investigators are also looking into numerous allegations against the Gulen Movement involving: indoctrination, influence operations, salary-kickback schemes, visa system abuse and more.

In fact, the allegations against the Gulen Movement extend all the way to the U.S. Congress. In late October 2015, a USA Todayinvestigation revealed that the Gulen Movement had illegally funded more than 200 trips to Turkey for Members of Congress since 2008. It did so using false disclosure statements that concealed their Gulen sponsorship from both the legislators and the House Ethics Committee, which had been misled into approving member- and/or staff participation in the trips.

Thus, in spite of the Gulen Movement’s carefully projected image of harmony, interfaith dialogue, and tolerance, a far more troubling picture is beginning to emerge that the Center believes warrants a closer look. In praise of this new Center publication, Center for Security Policy President Frank Gaffney said:

In short, the Gulen Movement in Turkey, the United States, and worldwide promotes a far-more problematic program than its adherents would have us believe. It is not a benign cultural and educational institution, or even a billion-plus dollar commercial empire. Rather, it is a prime practitioner of civilization jihad, enabling the spread of the Islamic supremacism’s shariah doctrine under the banner of a Turkey that aspires to renew its role as the Caliphate of the Ottoman empire’s glory days.

U.S school districts, parents and students, federal, state and local governments, media organizations and academic institutions have clearly been successfully targeted by the Gulenists’ influence operations. It is essential that we expose the true nature and civilization jihadist ambitions of Gulen’s taxpayer-subsidized educational empire and the favors its parent movement has deployed – notably, via all-expenses-paid trips to Turkey. This monograph makes an important contribution to that end.

The Center for Security Policy is proud to present this monograph as a superb addition to its Civilization Jihad Reader Series. “The Gulen Movement: Turkey’s Islamic Supremacist Cult and Its Contribution to Civilization Jihad in America” is available for purchase in Kindle andpaperback format at Amazon.com. As with all of the other volumes in this Readers Series, this one can also be downloaded for free at www.SecureFreedom.org.

– 30 –

For further information on the threats shariah poses to our foundational liberal democratic values, see more titles from the Center for Security Policy’s Civilization Jihad Reader Series at https://www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org/civilization-jihad-reader-series/

Buy “The Gulen Movement: Turkey’s Islamic Supremacist Cult and Its Contribution to Civilization Jihad in America” in paperback or Kindle format on Amazon.

DF of the newly released monograph: Gulen_Final

 

The West Can Defeat ISIS – but What Comes Next?

06182014_ISIL_ISIS_Standing_Guard_IraqBy Pete Hoekstra and Clare Lopez, The Fiscal Times, December 8, 2015

French President François Hollande is making the rounds of the world’s capitals, jet setting between London, Washington and Moscow with several meetings in-between.

He is engaged in a full-throttle effort to convince leaders of a plain and simple plan. Immediately eliminate the Islamic State that’s claimed responsibility for the massacre of 130 innocent men, women and children in Paris. That the jihadist state needs to go is not in dispute. It is creating chaos and mayhem throughout the Middle East, parts of Africa and beyond. ISIS is an aggressively metastasizing cancer that threatens Europe and North America.

Before a global coalition follows the French headfirst into this Indiana-sized caliphate located in the former Iraq and Syria, however, we need to answer questions related to competing political and territorial concerns.

The last time the U.S. led from behind the French, the message was also seemingly plain and simple. Remove Muammar Gaddafi by aiding, abetting and arming Libya’s al-Qaeda militias and the country will take care of itself as the Libyan Muslim Brotherhood assumes power.

History proved them disastrously wrong. Libya quickly collapsed into a failed state with Gaddafi’s massive munitions stockpiles – and very likely some of the weapons and training that NATO gave to the Libyan jihadis opposed to Gaddafi – finding their way into Syria to form the early core of ISIS.

Indeed, arguments could be made that none of the interventions by the West in the Middle East and northern Africa turned out well. The common lesson learned in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Libya is that nothing is as simple as it looks. Every situation is difficult with many different considerations that all carry grave ramifications.

Let’s examine all of the intended outcomes as well as the possible unintended consequences of current decisions.

Whether we like it or not, ISIS currently plays a role in the balancing act between Shia and Sunni in the Middle East. What happens to the equilibrium once it is removed from the equation?

Do the U.S. and Europe propose to formalize the Shia crescent of dominance from Tehran, through Baghdad to Damascus, ending in Beirut? Russia is the coalition’s primary benefactor, so the axis now also includes Moscow. Is this how the West envisions that part of the world coalescing? Or does the West see some other as-yet undefined coalition of Sunni forces filling the void? How would U.S. allies such as Israel, Jordan and Turkey respond to a Shia crescent?

Have the leaders responsible thought about possible contingencies, and how to achieve better outcomes?

Have we considered that the very rise of ISIS, with broad support from local Sunni states, was itself a reaction to the removal of Saddam Hussein and the Iraqi army as the only credible counterweight to the Shiite rulers in Tehran? These states, from Saudi Arabia to Turkey and the United Arab Emirates, will and must have a say in what happens next. They will not allow a nuclear-armed Iranian hegemony to expand unchallenged. They recognize that the U.S. has been an unreliable ally at best, as it facilitated the overthrow of Sunni regimes in Iraq, Egypt, Libya and Yemen and allowed for the advancement of Iran’s nuclear weapons capabilities.

Further, the Middle East battleground is crowded with competing ethnic, sectarian and tribal interests, most of which harbor jihadist sympathies. So, with which should the U.S. ally itself against ISIS: the al-Qaeda affiliate, Jabhat al-Nusra? The Turkish-backed Ahrar al-Sham? Are we helping Bashar al-Assad cling to power by fighting side-by-side with Hezbollah and the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corp? What about our relationship with Vladimir Putin’s Russia?

The Obama administration has already demonstrated its proclivity to side with the wrong party – al-Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood – in Libya and Egypt. We should not allow ourselves to become drawn into such mistakes again, especially when the ability of the West, Russia and Iran to fully destroy ISIS – or its jihadist ideology – is not entirely clear right now.

We need to think of this as a game of chess in which leaders strategize three to four steps ahead into a future without ISIS. Current decisions will have a domino effect on subsequent outcomes.

More often than not, we are playing soccer of the worst kind, the bunch ball sort in which we watched our children all at once chase the ball and try to kick it downfield at the same time with little success. It is such a sad but true comparison, but how else do you explain losing the war after more than 14 years of endless battles since 9/11?

Pete Hoekstra is the Shillman Senior Fellow at the Investigative Project on Terrorism. Clare M. Lopez is the Vice President for Research & Analysis at the Center for Security Policy.

***

Odierno: U.S. Needs to Rebuild Trust in Middle East

Also see:

Benghazi Commission: Obama Admin Gun-Running Scheme Armed Islamic State

ISIS-fires-rockets-FlickrAmir-Farshad-Ebraham-640x480Breitbart, by Edwin Mora, Nov. 30, 2015:

The Obama administration pursued a policy in Libya back in 2011 that ultimately allowed guns to walk into the hands of jihadists linked to the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) and al-Qaeda (AQ) in Syria, according to a former CIA officer who co-authored a report on behalf of the Citizen’s Commission on Benghazi (CCB), detailing the gun running scheme.

In Congress, the then-bipartisan group known as the “Gang of Eight,” at a minimum, knew of the operation to aid and abet America’s jihadist enemies by providing them with material support. So says Clare Lopez, a former CIA officer and the primary author of CCB’s interim report, titled How America Switched Sides in the War on Terror, speaking with Breitbart News.

The ripple effects of the illegal policy to arm America’s enemies continue to be felt as the U.S. military is currently leading a war against ISIS and AQ terrorists in Iraq and Syria, according to Lopez.

In late October, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said that the U.S. would begin “direct action on the ground” against ISIS terrorists in Iraq and Syria who may have reaped the benefits from the gun-running scheme that started in Libya.

“The Obama administration effectively switched sides in what used to be called the Global War on Terror [GWOT] when it decided to overthrow the sovereign government of our Libyan ally, Muammar Qaddafi, who’d been helping in the fight against al-Qaeda, by actually teaming up with and facilitating gun-running to Libyan al-Qaeda and Muslim Brotherhood [MB] elements there in 2011,” explained Lopez. “This U.S. gun-running policy in 2011 during the Libyan revolution was directed by [then] Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and [the late Libya Ambassador] Christopher Stevens, who was her official envoy to the Libyan AQ rebels.”

To avoid having the funds tracked back to the Obama administration, the arms flow to Libya was financed thru the United Arab Emirates, while Qatar served as the logistical and shipping hub, she noted.

“In 2012, the gun-running into Libya turned around and began to flow outward, from Benghazi to the AQ-and-MB-dominated rebels in Syria,” Lopez added. “This time, it was the CIA Base of Operations that was in charge of collecting up and shipping out [surface-to-air missiles] SAMs from Libya on Libyan ships to Turkey for overland delivery to a variety of jihadist militias, some of whose members later coalesced into groups like Jabhat al-Nusra and ISIS [also known as IS].”

Jabhat al-Nusra is al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate.

“The downstream consequences of Obama White House decisions in the Syrian conflict are still playing out, but certainly the U.S. – and particularly CIA – support of identifiable jihadist groups associated with the Muslim Brotherhood, Jabhat al-Nusra, Ahrar al-Sham, the Islamic State and other [jihadists] has only exacerbated what was already a devastating situation,” declared Lopez.

Some of the other weapons that eventually ended up in Syria included thousands of MAN-Portable-Air-Defense-System (MANPADS) missile units, such as shoulder-launched SAMs, from late dictator Muammar Qaddafi’s extensive arms stockpiles that pose a threat to low-flying aircraft, especially helicopters.

“It’s been reported that President Obama signed an Executive Order on Syria in early 2012 [just as he had done for Libya in early 2011], that legally covered the CIA and other U.S. agencies that otherwise would have been in violation of aiding and abetting the enemy in time of war and providing material support to terrorism,” notes Lopez. “Still, such blatant disregard for U.S. national security can only be described as deeply corrosive of core American principles.”

Libya Amb. Stevens was killed by jihadists in Benghazi on September 11, 2012, along with three other Americans.

Echoing a Benghazi resident who provided a first-hand account of the incident, retired U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Dennis Haney, a CCB member, suggested to Breitbart News that Hillary Clinton’s State Department armed some of the al-Qaeda linked jihadists who may have killed the four Americans in Benghazi.

“The reason the U.S. government was operating in Libya is absolutely critical to this debacle because it reflects where America went off the tracks and literally switched sides in the GWOT,” points out Lopez. “This is about who we are as a country, as a people — where we are going with this Republic of ours.”

“There can be no greater treason than aiding and abetting the jihadist enemy in time of war – or providing material – weapons, funding, intel, NATO bombing – support to terrorism,” she continued. “The reason Benghazi is not the burning issue it ought to be is because so many at top levels of U.S. government were implicated in wrong-doing: White House, Pentagon, Intel Community-CIA, Gang of Eight, at a minimum, in Congress, the Department of State, etc.”

The State Department and the CIA did not respond to Breitbart News’ requests for comment.

Clinton was asked about the gun running operation when testifying before the House Select Committee on Benghazi in October.

The Democratic presidential frontrunner claimed she was not aware of any U.S. government efforts to arm jihadists in Libya and Syria.

Clinton did admit to being open to the idea of using private security experts to arm the Qaddafi opposition, which included al-Qaeda elements, but added that it was “not considered seriously.”

Members of the 2011 “Gang of Eight” mentioned in this report included: then-House Speaker Rep. John Boehner, House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi, then- Rep. Mike Rogers , Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger , then-Sen. Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid, then-Sen. Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnellSen. Dianne Feinstein, and Sen. Saxby Chambliss .

Lopez is the vice president for research and analysis at the Center for Security Policy and a senior fellow at the London Center for Policy Research and the Canadian Meighen Institute.

Audio: Clare Lopez on the Global Islamic Jihad Movement

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This is an excellent wide ranging interview with Clare Lopez by Roy “Backpack” Baron and Yoda of Global Voices of Freedom radio. Visit their website: http://www.magnifiedview.com/

Topics covered:

  • The Global Islamic Jihad Movement
  • Pre-violent civilization and violent jihad 
  • America’s First Principles vs. Sharia
  • Refugee resettlement and vetting for ideology
  • Need for local police departments and sheriffs to learn about jihad and what to look for (32 min. into audio)
  • Mosques as command and control centers for jihad
  • US Middle East Policy 

Resources mentioned:

Clare Lopez audio widget

Ms. Lopez manages the Center for Security Policy’s counterjihad and shariah programs, bringing with her also an expertise on Iran, Hizballah, and southern border issues. From 2010-2014, she was a Sr. Fellow with the Center. Lopez began her professional career as a CIA operations officer and later applied her national security expertise as a consultant, intelligence analyst, and researcher in various contract positions within the defense sector. She has been an instructor for military intelligence and Special Forces students and lectures widely on Iran, Islam, and the Muslim Brotherhood around the country. Earlier an advisor to EMP Act America, in February 2012 Ms. Lopez was named a member of the Congressional Task Force on National and Homeland Security, which focuses on the Electro-Magnetic Pulse (EMP) threat to the nation and is a member of the Center’s Secure the Grid Coalition.

Lopez is the co-author of two published books on Iran, author of an acclaimed paper for the Center, The Rise of the Iran Lobby, and co-author/editor of the Center’s Team B II study, “Shariah: The Threat to America”. Ms. Lopez received a B.A. in Communications and French from Notre Dame College of Ohio and an M.A. in International Relations from the Maxwell School of Syracuse University. She completed Marine Corps Officer Candidate School (OCS) in Quantico, Virginia before declining a commission to join the CIA.

Video: Clare Lopez on ISIS and the Global Islamic Jihad Movement

suicidebomberisis-620x350Center for Security Policy, Nov. 18, 2015:

The Center’s Vice President for Research and Analysis, Clare Lopez discussing the Paris attacks on “Tipping Point w/Liz Wheeler” – One America News Network

Clare Lopez: US Response to the Global Jihad Movement

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Published on Feb 26, 2015 by johngaltcsa

Alert Long Island presents Clare Lopez – former CIA officer and Strategic Policy and Intelligence Expert – The US Response to the Global Jihad Movement
Albertson, NY Feb 24, 2015

What the Arrests of Pro-Regime Americans Tells Us About Iranian Leadership in Turmoil

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With the recent arrest and detention in Iran of Siamak Namazi, an Iranian-American businessman, and Nizar Zakka, a U.S. legal resident, by intelligence operatives of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), murky jockeying for power at the top levels of the Tehran regime just got murkier.

Set against the backdrop of a nuclear ‘deal’ that nobody in Iran has either approved or signed and a generational shift underway between the by-now very wealthy founders of Khomeini’s 1979 revolution and a lean and hungry younger cohort of hardliners imbued with the zeal of true believers, the arrests seem at first glance to make little sense.

Namazi, a Dubai-based close associate of key Iran Lobby figure, Trita Parsi and his National Iranian American Council (NIAC), and Zakka, an IT executive with Beirut connections (and a checkered past involving Canadian accusations of running an illegal immigration racket), would appear to have all the right connections and credentials to stay out of this kind of trouble.

And yet, Namazi today sits in Evin Prison and Zakka was detained after being lured to a mid-September 2015 conference to promote entrepreneurship in Iran.

While some regime insiders, like President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, who have been close to the top leadership since the Ayatollah Khomeini overthrew the Shah, now seek a more open business and political environment to develop and protect their economic equities, powerful factions within the IRGC, some of which own (collectively) as much as one-third of the Iranian economy, and some of whom (like former Pasdar President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) oppose any opening whatsoever to the U.S. or the West on ideological grounds, are determined to keep Iran (and its financial assets) firmly within their own grip.

The big question is, where does Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader, stand?

If perennial reports about his ill-health are to be believed, he might not be standing at all for long. But at this writing, it is his word that – probably – still defines Iranian policy. Unless elements of the IRGC finally have grown powerful enough to challenge even the Supreme Leader. In any case, these recent arrests are likely as much about the gathering succession struggle as sending a signal to over-excited American officials panting after a nuclear deal that never was and probably never will be.

Adding Namazi and Zakka to the four American hostages already being held by the Tehran regime may not trouble the Obama White House or its hapless negotiating team, but ought to serve as notice on several counts:

  • There will be no gush of reciprocity from Tehran for the abundance of U.S. concessions made during the protracted talks over Iran’s nuclear weapons program
  • Any American hopes for a new dawn of mutual understanding with Tehran on its human rights abuses, regional geo-strategic aggression, support for terrorism, or commitment to development of nuclear weapons and the ballistic missile means to deliver them need to be dashed like pumpkins after Halloween
  • The internal succession struggle over who or what eventually will take the place of current Supreme Leader  is well-underway and we understand next to nothing about it
  • The entire nuclear negotiations process, not to mention more American citizens and U.S. policy in the Middle East itself, could well end up as collateral damage if U.S. national security leadership doesn’t soon get a lot more sober-minded about who and what it is we are dealing with in Tehran: a jihadist regime bent on hegemonic regional power, locked in by a deliverable nuclear weapons capability.

Clare Lopez is Vice President for Research and Analysis at the Center for Security Policy. Ms. Lopez manages the Center’s counterjihad and shariah programs, bringing with her also an expertise on Iran, Hizballah, and southern border issues.

Also see:

The Islamic Threat Is Present in the U.S.

Lt. Gen. “Jerry” Boykin, Cathy Hinners, Clare Lopez and Sandy Rios discuss the threat of Islam in the United States. Photo credit: Tyler O’Neil, PJ Media

Lt. Gen. “Jerry” Boykin, Cathy Hinners, Clare Lopez and Sandy Rios discuss the threat of Islam in the United States.
Photo credit: Tyler O’Neil, PJ Mediana

PJ Media, by Tyler O’Neil, September 29, 2015:

WASHINGTON – Three American women who have been branded as “anti-Muslim” by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) spoke out against the threat of Islamism in the United States at the Family Research Council’s Values Voter Summit on Saturday. Contrary to the rhetoric SPLC and others, these women are not “Islamophobes.”

“Americans need to know the threat is here. So many people, when I say ‘the Muslim Brotherhood,’ they say ‘that’s an Egypt problem.’ It’s not — it’s in every state of this country,” declared Cathy Hinners, a law enforcement instructor and founder of the website Dailyrollcall.com.

Hinners was joined by Clare M. Lopez, an intelligence expert with a focus on the Middle East, and Sandy Rios, director of government affairs for the American Family Association and Fox News contributor. All three women were attacked in the SPLC’s “Women Against Islam” pamphlet, which has been described by many conservative outlets as a “hit list.”

“This is dangerous because there is a basic principle of Islam which can turn every Muslim into a potential vigilante,” Lopez declared, citing the doctrine that Muslims must “forbid the evil and enjoin the good.” She, Rios and Hinners see the SPLC “hit list” as marking a target on their backs. When Rios declared, “By the way, we all carry,” the crowd erupted in applause.

Islamism in the United States

“Tennessee is ground zero for Muslim activism in the United States,” Hinners declared. In a separate interview with PJ Media, she explained the impact of Islamist activism in the schools.

Hinners specifically mentioned one recent “explosive discovery” in this Bible Belt state. “In one of the counties in Tennessee, we learned that children in seventh grade are saying the Shahada — that there is no God but Allah and that Mohammed is the messenger — in class,” she explained. While the teacher led the students to say this “under the guise of social studies,” Hinners argued that “there is no historical value in saying a prayer or the Islamic profession of faith.”

This is a serious issue because the Shahada is considered the most important part of converting to Islam — it is a public declaration that the speaker embraces the faith, rejects the “polytheism” of Christianity and follows Mohammed as the prophet of Allah.

Hinners also mentioned textbooks with subversive themes and instruction materials provided by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), an organization with alleged ties to Hamas and other terrorist groups. Tennessee’s pacing guide also gives a disproportionate weight to Islamic civilization — 17 days — as opposed to the Roman Empire, which is only given four days of teaching. “We’ve been told by some teachers that they had to skip that part because they don’t have enough time for social studies, so Islam took priority over the Roman Empire.”

Hinners also argued that there are many other groups with terrorist connections here in the U.S. She mentioned the American Muslim Advisory Council (AMAC), arguing that there are “little offshoots” carrying “the ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood, usually run by supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood.”

Islam as a Threat — A Political Religion

“Islam is not like Buddhism or Judaism or Christianity — it is a political system with religious elements,” Rios declared. In a post-conference interview with PJ Media, she clarified her position by contrasting Islam with Christianity.

“Speaking theologically, there could not be more difference between the two faiths,” Rios said. “The God of Christians gave His life to redeem, while Mohammed’s Allah is a god who demands vengeance and blood.” The Fox News contributor added that “Christianity is based on the ability to choose,” while “with Allah, it’s like ‘believe or die.’”

Defending this characterization of Islam, Hinners argued that “Islam was peaceful at first — on page one and two it is — but Mohammed turned violent.” Lt. Gen. (Ret) William G. Boykin, executive vice president at the Family Research Council (FRC), agreed. Boykin explained that the doctrines of “progressive revelation” and “divine abrogation” mean the later, more militaristic passages in the Q’ran supersede the peaceful passages at the beginning.

The military side of Islam explained why the building of a mosque at “ground zero” — the site of the September 11, 2001, attacks in New York City — proved so controversial. “In the days of Mohammed, mosques were military buildings, and it is considered a victory when one is built,” Hinners explained.

Lopez said mosques are still used as military buildings in Islamic countries today. “American troops in the Middle East were surprised to be shot at from the minarets of mosques,” Lopez explained, because the troops thought mosques were merely religious buildings like Christian churches. The gunfire and weapons often found stockpiled in the religious centers proved otherwise.

Islam and Patriotism

During a Q&A session, Boykin was asked why he supports religious freedom for Christians, but not for Muslims. He responded that he supports religious freedom for everyone, but “no religion that threatens our Constitution can be tolerated under that constitution.”

Many Muslims, in advocating for the application of Sharia law (the Islamic legal code) in the United States, are de facto opposing the American constitution, Boykin argued. Rios wholeheartedly agreed.

“Sharia law is the part of Islam that demands obedience, that is brutal to women, enjoins female circumcision, honor killings, and throwing homosexuals from high buildings,” Rios explained.

Practices like female circumcision (forcing a woman to have her clitoris mutilated or removed in order to make her less likely to sleep around) and honor killings (a family putting their daughter to death for various offenses like marrying outside Islam) are rightly condemned as misogynistic under American law. The horrific murder of homosexuals is obviously also illegal in the United States.

Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, founder and president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD), is an outspoken Muslim patriot, and has supported statewide bans on Sharia law. Jasser and his group represent Muslims who “advocate for the preservation of the founding principles of the United States Constitution, liberty and freedom, through the separation of mosque and state.”

AIFD’s website declares that the organization is dedicated to “directly confronting the ideologies of political Islam and openly countering the common belief that the Muslim faith is inextricably rooted to the concept of the Islamic state (Islamism).”

While the panelists might be expected to disagree with Jasser, claiming that Islam is inescapably political, they had nothing but outspoken praise for the man. “He is a Muslim who has proven his loyalty to this country, and he is worthy of our respect. We need more like Zuhdi Jasser,” Rios declared. “He seems to be a really good man,” Hinners added.

“M. Zuhdi Jasser is a brave man, he is a patriot,” Boykin declared. “But how many M. Zuhdi Jassers do you know?” he asked, pointedly.

As illustrated by their praise for Jasser, the panelists do not consider all Muslims to be enemies of the United States, only those who advocate for what Jasser calls “political Islam” or “Islamism.” Lopez, Rios, Hinners and Boykin are not “anti-Muslim,” as SPLC claimed, but merely anti-Islamist.

In the Middle East, Support the Kurds

This support for American-friendly Muslims also extended to the Kurds, an ethnic group in northern Iraq and the surrounding area, which is currently fighting the Islamic State (ISIS).

“I would never advocate arming Muslim groups, but I would arm the Kurds,” Boykin declared. “I don’t understand why Obama refuses to do so.”

Hinners, who constantly warns about the Islamist influence in her area of Tennessee, called on Americans to reach out to Kurds living in the United States and offer assistance. “There are 1,100 Kurds in the Nashville area. Look for Kurds over here to help the Kurds in the Middle East,” the law enforcement instructor said.

Even so, the Kurds are a minority in the Middle East, and the panelists argued that the region is at war because of conflicting Islamist political ideologies.

“I see the conflict in the former Iraq and former Syria as an intra-Islamic conflict between Sunnis and Shi’ites,” Lopez added. Sunnis and Shi’ites, as the two largest denominations of Islam, have control in various parts of the Middle East. They are divided by the issue of the rightful caliph — the successor to the prophet Mohammed and head of the Islamic state — after Mohammed died.

While a vast majority of Muslims are Sunni, Iran is a Shi’ite state and has emerged in a very dominant position in the Middle East. While the majority of Iraqis are Shi’ite, Saddam Hussein was a Sunni and oppressed his own people. “When the U.S. attacked Iraq, we broke the balance between Sunni and Shi’ite,” allowing the Shi’ites to take the upper hand, Lopez explained.

These politico-religious divisions behind the warfare backed up the panelists’ claims that Islam is largely a political religion. But their support for Jasser and the Kurds also showed their belief that Islam does not necessarily have to be tied to a state ideology.

Contrary to the claims of SPLC and others, these panelists are not “Islamophobes” or “haters,” but Americans weary of a politico-religious ideology opposing their way of life. It’s high time others listened to their concerns and realize the dangers of Islamism.

A conservative fundraiser and commentator, Tyler O’Neil has written for numerous publications, including The Christian Post, National Review, The Washington Free Beacon, The Daily Signal, AEI’s Values & Capitalism, and the Colson Center’s Breakpoint. He enjoys Indian food, board games, and talking ceaselessly about politics, religion and culture.

BOOK RELEASE: Star Spangled Shariah: The Rise of America’s First Muslim Brotherhood Party

Center for Security Policy, Sep. 15, 2015:

The U.S. Muslim Brotherhood’s stated goal in America is to “destroy the Western civilization from within.” Star-Spangled Shariah: The Rise of America’s First Muslim Brotherhood Partyshows the newest weapon in their arsenal for doing so – a self-described “political Party” called the U.S. Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO). This new monograph “connects the dots” between the Brotherhood’s secret plan to impose Shariah here and the insidious use it intends to make of our democratic political system to that end.

The USCMO understands that in order for it to succeed, the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood must be galvanized to the execution of the “Civilization-Jihadist Process” – a term taken from a key 1991 Brotherhood document, An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America, submitted as evidence by the Justice Department in the landmark 2008U.S. v Holy Land Foundation, et al. HAMAS terror funding trial:

spangled2The process of settlement is a ‘Civilization-Jihadist Process’ with all the word means. The Ikhwan [Muslim Brotherhood] must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying Western civilization from within and “sabotaging” its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers, so that is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.” 

By its nature, the object of such a stealthy form of jihad is to ensure that the target community remains unaware of the extent of the threat until it is too late. It is our purpose with this volume and the other monographs of the Center’s Civilization Jihad Reader Series to raise the alarm and to engage the American people and their elected representatives in countering this threat while there is still time.

Center for Security Policy President Frank Gaffney said of the new Civilization Jihad Reader:

The Muslim Brotherhood agenda for the United States demonstrably seeks through subversive infiltration of American institutions the triumph of shariah. We are now on notice that U.S. Council of Muslim Organizations is simply the leading edge of the jihadist movement in this country. While the USCMO seeks to cloak itself in red, white, and blue, it is only for the purpose of accomplishing what can aptly be described as “Star Spangled Shariah.”

The Center for Security Policy/Secure Freedom is proud to present this monograph as a superb addition to its Civilization Jihad Reader Series Star-Spangled Shariah: The Rise of America’s First Muslim Brotherhood Party is available for purchase in kindle and paperback format on Amazon.com.

Click here for a full PDF of the newly released monograph.

FREEDOM ISN’T FREE – Hausman Memorial Speaker Series

Hausman eventPublished on Aug 13, 2015 by theunitedwest

The Hausman Memorial Speaker Series is proud to host three extraordinary individuals for the “Freedom Isn’t Free” Security Briefing, at Ahavath Torah Congregation in Stoughton, MA. Frank Gaffney, president and founder of The Center for Security Policy, Clare Lopez, former CIA operations officer and current VP of Research and Analysis at The Center, and Admiral James “Ace” Lyons, former Commander of the USN Pacific Fleet and current President and CEO of Lions Associates LLC offer their insights on topics including jihad, the Islamic State and the dangers and consequences of a bad Iranian nuclear deal. This straight forward presentation will undoubtedly reveal aspects of the Obama Administration’s policies that will leave you shaking your head!

Obama Concessions to Iran Worse than Previously Known

1383410554Center for Security Policy, by Clare Lopez, June 30, 2015:

To no one’s surprise, the nuclear talks with Iran that were supposed to produce an agreement by tomorrow have been extended. Critics of the nuclear deal sought by President Obama fear that this will be a dangerous deal because of too many one sided U.S. concessions to Iran.

These include allowing Iran to enrich uranium and build advanced enrichment centrifuges while an agreement is in force. Iran will keep all of its nuclear infrastructure, including a plutonium-producing heavy–water reactor. (It is supposed to be re-engineered to produce less plutonium.)

Iran also will be allowed to keep its entire stockpile of the uranium it’s already enriched (although it’s supposed to dilute it down to a form less-readily usable to make a bomb). Nor does Iran have to come clean about its past nuclear weapons work. And the U.S. reportedly has now pledged to provide Iran technical assistance to further develop its nuclear program.

Israeli news sources over the weekend claimed that the U.S. has caved on inspections of nuclear facilities in a final agreement, a report that is consistent with other reports this month about such a concession.

But this story actually gets worse. In a June 29 Wall Street Journal article, columnist Jay Solomon wrote that the Obama administration has been secretly making concessions to Iran since 2009 to convince it to begin multilateral talks on its nuclear program.

These concessions included the release of four Iranians detained in the United States and the United Kingdom; two convicted arms smugglers, a retired senior diplomat and a scientist convicted of illegal exports to Iran. The U.S. also agreed to increase U.S. visas for Iranian students. According to Solomon, these concessions were arranged in secret by Oman.

Iran also asked the United States to blacklist groups hostile to Iran. The Obama administration reportedly replied to this request by sanctioning a Pakistani military group known as Jundullah which had attacked Shi’ite mosques in eastern Iran, killing hundreds.

According to the Journal article, the Obama administration did not agree to sanction other groups hostile to the Iranian regime such as a pro-monarchy group in Los Angeles. The MEK (Mujahedeen-e Khalq and the National Council of Resistance of Iran or NCRI, the political umbrella group to which it belongs) had already been put on the Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) list in 1997 and 2003, respectively, at the request of Mohammad Khatami, a previous Iranian president.

The editorial also noted that on the day after the announcement of the framework agreement, the U.S. Treasury Department removed Buhary Seyed Abu Tahir, a Dubai-based Sri Lankan businessman, from a list of persons sanctioned in 2004 as part of the A.Q. Khan nuclear proliferation network. This network provided secret assistance to the nuclear programs of Iran, Libya and North Korea.

What other concessions did the Obama administration make to get a nuclear deal with Iran? The overall picture that’s emerging suggests an even broader understanding: to what extent has the Obama White House agreed to Iranian regional hegemony, perhaps a dominance secured by a nuclear capability? How much worse does this story have to get before Congress puts an end to this dangerous farce?

Islamic Terror in an Age of Individual Jihad

20150504_texassuspectsshotmohammed.siFamily Security Matters, by Clare Lopez, May 7, 2015:

Anyone who thinks that what happened at the Curtis Culwell Center in Garland, TX on 3 May 2015, when two Muslim terrorists tried to attack a “Draw Muhammad” art contest, was an isolated incident, needs to think again. Although the two jihadist shooters, both affiliated with the Islamic Community Center of Phoenix (a Muslim Brotherhood-linked mosque), were quickly shot dead by security at the site, it’s their modus operandi that we need to understand. This is what the future jihad in America is going to look like. It is called ‘individual jihad’ (fard ‘ayn) and it is not just doctrinally-authorized in Islam, but is aggressively being encouraged, even commanded, by the Islamic State (as the Caliphate) through its online magazine, ‘Dabiq,’ as well as a flurry of other statements and videos by both IS and al-Qa’eda.

As the Center’s Senior Fellow (and author of the newly-released “Catastrophic Failure”), Steve Coughlin, points out, 2015 is the final year of the “10 Year Programme of Action” for the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). The top action item for that decade has been criminalization of the criticism of Islam – that is, pushing for legal measures to bring U.S. and other Western societies into compliance with Islamic blasphemy and slander laws. Those laws impose the death penalty for anything considered ‘offensive’ to a Muslim. Some think that just avoiding anything that might remotely be thought ‘offensive’ to Muslims is the best way to deal with the situation. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton certainly did all she could during her tenure to collaborate with the OIC through the Istanbul Process and UN Human Rights Council Resolution 16/18. But it’s never enough and never going to be enough until all of humanity is subjugated to shariah; so now, in this final year of the ‘Programme,’ we are beginning to see the physical enforcement of those Islamic speech codes across the Western world, including in our own homeland. That enforcement increasingly is taking the form of individual acts of jihad terrorism.

Prior to 9/11, as al-Qa’eda took aim at ‘the far enemy,’ the key perpetrators-Usama bin Laden and other top leaders of AQ, Hizballah, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the Taliban-met to plot, plan, and direct that attack. It was very much a top-directed operation. Today, the Global Islamic Movement is dispersed, institutionalized, and operationalized. Myriad jihad groups as well as unaffiliated individual jihadis seek to instill terror across the world, even as AQ and IS compete with Iran for leadership of the kinetic vanguard role. The OIC functions at the Islamic head-of-state institutional jihad level. And the Muslim Brotherhood provides the civilization jihad indoctrination, infiltration, and subversion operations within target governments and societies.

These three jihad levels – kinetic vanguard, Islamic institution, and civilization jihad – work in synergistic tandem to undermine the West, sap our will to resist, and play the siren song of submission as the easiest, most reasonable way out of this nightmare. Violent jihad attacks by Muslim terrorists against Western free speech targets have proliferated throughout the first half of 2015. In early January 2015, two Muslim gunmen murdered twelve staff members of the French satirical magazine, ‘Charlie Hebdo.’ Three police officers were executed as well and another four people were killed by a third jihadist shooter who targeted a Jewish deli market in Paris. Then, in February, a jihadist gunman attacked a Copenhagen event called “Art, Blasphemy and Freedom of Expression” where Swedish cartoonist Lars Vilks was speaking, killing one civilian and injuring two law enforcement officers (although Vilks himself escaped harm). And now they’ve taken aim at Pamela Geller, the courageous founder of Stop Islamization of America, also known as the American Freedom Defense Initiative. The body count is rising, but that’s not really the objective: free speech is. Free society and free-thinking individuals governed by consent of the governed under rule of man-made law are. Simply by existing, such individuals and such societies block the forces of jihad from achieving their obligatory shariah objective, which is the global imposition of shariah. Free speech is the most important, first line of defense against that onslaught because shariah cannot reign unchallenged as long as free people may speak their minds.

Taking shape, then, is a concerted jihad campaign to instill terror among those who dare to resist shariah. Especially via online messaging and social media, the Islamic State has been urging faithful Muslims to make the hijrah to Middle East battlefields but specifically encourages those who cannot or choose not to, to wage individual jihad in place, wherever they live. Thanks to misguided federal refugee resettlement policies that are channeling thousands of all-too-often poorly-vetted Muslim immigrants into the U.S., combined with official refusal to recognize Muslim Brotherhood operatives, groups, and Islamic Centers as the jihadist threat they actually are, there is a now a ready pool of indoctrinated jihad recruits living among us, whose numbers the FBI admits it has no way to manage or even monitor. From this pool in coming weeks and months will emerge the individual jihadis, converted, inspired, and trained by Brotherhood imams and mosques who will answer the IS call to jihad issued by recruiters lying in wait for them all over the Internet.

Understanding and confronting this dynamic that is taking direct aim at the American right to free speech is imperative for both the engaged citizen and an informed law enforcement community. It is the only way to stay free.