VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS: The Iowa National Security Action Summit

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Center for Security Policy, May 18, 2015:

NSAS Iowa

Des Moines, IA— On Saturday May 16th, The Center for Security Policy, in partnership with THE FAMILY LEADER Foundation and High Frontier, hosted The Iowa National Security Action Summit. The conference featured many of the most influential national security practitioners of our day addressing the current state of U.S. foreign and defense policy in an increasingly perilous world. Specifically, the event covered four key topics of interest to both our nation and the state of Iowa:

  • Border Insecurity and Illegal Immigration
  • America’s Electrical Power Grid and Threats to Critical Infrastructure
  • The Hollowing Out of The U.S. Military
  • The Threat from Iran, Shariah and The Global Jihad Movement

The following noteworthy policy experts and national leaders addressed a packed room at the Point of Grace Church in Waukee, IA, just outside of Des Moines:

Border and Immigration Insecurity

  • Iowa Congressman Arnold “Steve” King

  • Phyllis Schlafley, Founder, Eagle Forum

  • Ann Corcoran, Refugee Resettlement Watch

  • Rick Manning, Americans for Limited Government

  • Jan Michelson, WHO Radio, Iowa

America’s Electric Power Grid and Threats to Critical Infrastructure

  • Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, Executive Director, Task Force on National and Homeland Security

  • Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, Chairman, High Frontier

See more at Center for Security Policy

Frank Gaffney: Iowa National Security Summit Will Tackle Need to Defeat Jihad, Secure Border

frank-gaffney-AP-Photo-640x480Breitbart, by EDWIN MORA, May 14, 2015:

The Iowa National Security Action Summit this Saturday is expected to feature experts and leaders who will address the need to defeat jihad, border security, and the hollowing out of the U.S. military, among other topics, according to the organization hosting the event.

Frank Gaffney, Jr., the president of the Center for Security Policy, spoke to Breitbart News about what to expect from the conference, which is hosted by his organization in partnership with The FAMiLY LEADER Foundation and High Frontier.

The May 16 conference is the second National Security Action Summit hosted by Gaffney’s organization.

On March 14, Gaffney’s group hosted a conference in South Carolina that drew hundreds of participants as well as preeminent national security experts, senior federal officials, and individuals seeking to lead the nation.

“The national security action summits are issues forums designed to educate the public and their representatives about the critical security challenges we face and the imperative of addressing them decisively,” Gaffney told Breitbart News.

“They showcase the necessity of: defeating the global jihad movement and its ideology of shariah; securing our borders and fixing our dysfunctional immigration system; rebuilding America’s military; and securing America’s electric grid,” he continued.

The summits are aimed at “equipping and empowering state and local representatives and their constituents to engage constructively in the national security debate,” later added Gaffney.

Confirmed speakers include:

• Dr. Benjamin Solomon “Ben” Carson, Sr.

• Ambassador Henry (Hank) F. Cooper, Chairman, High Frontier

• Ann Corcoran, Refugee Resettlement Watch

•Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX)

• Frank Gaffney, President, Center for Security Policy

• Dan Goure, Vice President, Lexington Institute

• Peter Huessy, President, GeoStrategic Analysis

• Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal

•Rep. Steve King (R-IA)

• Navy Adm. James “Ace” Lyons (Ret.)

• Rick Manning, Americans for Limited Government

• Iowa Republican State Rep. Zach Nunn

• Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, Executive Director, Task Force on National and Homeland Security

• Air Force Col. Al Ringgenberg (Ret.)

• Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA)

• Phyllis Schlafley, Founder, Eagle Forum

• Donald Trump

• Bob Vanderplaats, President, The FAMiLY Leader Foundation

“The Iowa National Security Action Summit is designed to ensure that our national security receives the attention it requires from elected officials and their constituents, alike – both at the federal level, AND the state level,” said a press release announcing Saturday’s event.

“Americans are increasingly aware that the world is becoming an ever-more-dangerous place.  They expect their leaders to protect them and our vital interests around the world,” explained Gaffney in the release. “The National Security Action Summit is a place where the best minds convene to lay out the best ideas for doing that.”

U.S. Welcomes Millions of Aliens ‘Sight Unseen’

customs-450x340Frontpage, May 12, 2015 by Michael Cutler:

On May 6, 2015 Fox News reported, “Purported ISIS warning claims terror cells in place in 15 states.”

Here is how that ominous report began:

A grim online warning from a self-described American jihadist said Sunday’s terror attack in Texas was the work of ISIS and that the terrorist group has scores of “trained soldiers” positioned in 15 states, awaiting orders to carry out more operations.

The warning, which was posted on a file-sharing site, could not be verified, but was signed by Abu Ibrahim Al Ameriki. That name matches the moniker of a shadowy American known to have joined a terrorist group in Pakistan several years ago and who has appeared in propaganda videos before. The chilling threat named five of the states where it is claimed that ISIS has terror cells in place.

News coverage about this threat included statements by the administration that it was prepared to pay millions of dollars to anyone who could provide information to enable them to locate leaders of terror organizations. Monetary payments for information is a good strategy. However, although it is not generally known, immigration benefits or visas for aliens illegally present in the United States and their families can provide a far greater incentive to get aliens to provide vital information. I base this assessment on my personal experience.

I spent roughly half of my career involved in conducting investigations into large-scale narcotics trafficking organizations. I had a desk at the DEA, FBI and ATF. One of my key responsibilities was to use my authority as an INS agent to identify and cultivate informants and cooperators.

The administration’s outrageous immigration policies have largely undermined this important and highly successful incentive. Consider that the administration is willing to provide just about any illegal alien with the ability to remain in the United States and even be granted employment authorization.

I addressed the nexus between immigration enforcement and the cultivation of intelligence in my November 10, 2014 article for Californians for Population Stabilization (CAPS), “Lack of Intelligence in Failures to Enforce Immigration Laws.”

In its continuing coverage of this threat, Fox News interviewed Congressman Peter King on the day that the above article was posted on the Fox News website. King had been the chairman of the Homeland Security Committee and currently is a member of the Homeland Security Committee and Chairman of the Sub-Committee on Counterterrorism and Intelligence. He also serves on the Financial Services Committee and Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

The interview included a discussion about the dangers associated with the Visa Waiver Program and the threat posed by terror “sleeper cells.” My article, “Sleeper Cells: The Immigration Component of the Threat,” was published by FrontPage Magazine on January 23, 2015 and addressed this serious vulnerability.

The visa process requires aliens who seeks to enter the United States to complete an application that contains approximately 40 questions and is interviewed, in person, by a consular official. Aliens who are eligible to enter the U.S. under the Visa Waiver Program do not fill out that application and face no in-person interview at the U.S. consulate or embassy.

On 9/11 the Visa Waiver Program permitted aliens from 26 countries to enter the United States without first applying for a visa. Today that list has been expanded to cover 38 countries.

Given the severity of the threats posed by international terrorists, the Visa Waiver Program should have been terminated and not expanded. However, a new threat to national security has been created within the past two years. That threat is a program known as Automated Passport Control (APC). Under this program, aliens who are eligible to enter the United States under the Visa Waiver Program may now enter the United States by interacting with a kiosk that looks similar to an ATM and is not to be confused with “Robo-Cop.”

Installing these kiosks began in March 2013 at international airports around the United States and the list of airports using these devices has been expanding ever since.

It is worth noting that the program references “controlling passports” but ignores the term “immigration.” Do we need to control passports or aliens who enter the United States?

This is yet another example of Orwellian Newspeak. The term “alien” has all but been expunged from the conversation except, of course, when we talk about “DREAMers” (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors). Now the term immigration is about to be eradicated as well. In point of fact, ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) had moved most of their special agents to a new subdivision known as HSI (Homeland Security Investigations) to expunge that apparently offensive term (immigration) from the vernacular.

Read more 

Dr. Mordechai Kedar – A Warning To America, Israel, the West

Published on Apr 24, 2015 by theunitedwest

Dr. Mordechai Kedar – A Warning To America – National Security And Understanding The Muslim Mind.

The United West is proud to bring you another installment of our Israel Trip Series featuring Israeli Scholar and National Security subject matter expert, Dr. Mordechai Kedar.

Dr. Kedar combines his 25 years in various IDF Intelligence Units, fluency in Arabic dialects, and a stellar academic career at Bar Ilan University into a National Security Briefing you must watch from beginning to end.

“We in the West often delude ourselves into believing that all cultures have exactly the same goals (peace, prosperity, freedom) and exactly the same values (human life, honesty, human rights). And although all of these goals and values are undoubtedly part of every human culture, not all cultures value them to the same degree that we do in the West.”

In this briefing Dr. Kedar will present a compelling look into understanding the Middle Eastern mind, culture, religion, and how the Muslim world sees Western culture. Only by understanding how the Muslim world sees us will we be able to properly defend our culture from The Global Jihad Movement.

In this briefing Dr. Kedar will cover these topics:

1. The Family unit and population demographics are a National Security issue.

2. 14:43 Understanding Islamic immigration to the West and why the export or Hijra is vastly important but misunderstood by Americans and Europeans. How this works into the framework of the Greater Middle East.

3. 45:40 Understanding the two types of threats emanating from the great Middle East and Persia.

4. 1:03:00 The Big Picture. The West’s Geo-Strategic picture with Iran.

5: What the Israeli message to Iran will have to be.

6. 1:11:00 How the Iranian mind thinks and processes information using their own imagery. The Shia Iranians do not think like us politically. Dr. Kedar takes Iranian political propaganda and deconstructs what it means from their perspective. What we think is irrelevant in dealing with the Iranians.

After you watch and absorb what Dr. Kedar is telling you about the Iranian mind you will be angry at how the current U.S. administration is dealing with our Iranian adversaries geo politically and even more urgently with the Iranian Nuclear program.

This lecture should be mandatory watching for President Obama, John Kerry, and everyone at the US State Department.

To follow Dr. Kedar’s body of work go to: http://mordechaikedar.com/

Go to http://www.TheUnitedWest.org and listen to Tom Trento’s simulcast daily AM radio show – Enemies Of The State.

God Bless America and God Bless Our Troops

Did the Clintons’ Greed Endanger U.S. National Security?

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CSP, by Fred Fleitz, April 23, 2015:

Although Peter Schweizer’s new book “Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich” will not hit bookstores until May 5, it has already set off a firestorm of controversy that foreign governments bought influence with the Clinton’s – including when Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State – by contributing millions of dollars to the Clinton Foundation and paying the Clinton’s millions in speaking fees.

Bill Clinton, according to Schweizer, earned $48 million in speaking fees while Mrs. Clinton was Secretary of State.  Although Hillary Clinton claimed she and her husband were “dead broke” in 2000, their current net worth is estimated between $100 million and $200 million.

The Clinton’s and their attack dogs have already launched an offensive against Schweizer’s book and are trying to discredit him because he is a conservative.  Several media organizations, including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post and Breitbart news have advance copies of the book and exclusive rights to the research compiled by Schweizer.

Most press stories on the Schweizer book have focused on the impropriety of the Clinton Foundation taking large foreign donations while Clinton was Secretary of State and how those donations may have influenced U.S. foreign policy.  Mrs. Clinton also has been criticized for tens of millions of dollars in contributions to the Clinton Foundation while she headed the State Department from regimes that persecute women such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman and the UAE.

A more troubling angle in the Clinton Foundation scandal surfaced over the last few days: that foreign donations to the foundation may have put U.S. national security at risk.

According to an article in today’s New York Times, some of these contributions involve Uranium One, a Canadian uranium mining company that was taken over by the Rosatom, the Russian atomic energy agency.  The Uranium One takeover gave Russia control of one-fifth of U.S. uranium production and advanced Russian President Vladimir Putin’s goal of controlling most of the global uranium supply chain.

Because uranium is considered a U.S. strategic asset with implications for national security, this deal had to be approved by a several U.S. government agencies, including the State Department.  According to the Times article, while the Russians were gradually assuming control of Uranium One from 2009 to 2013, the Uranium One chairman used his family foundation to make $2.35 million in donations to the Clinton Foundation.  The Times article states that “those contributions were not publicly disclosed by the Clinton’s, despite an agreement Mrs. Clinton had struck with the Obama White House to publicly identify all donors.”

According to an April 18  Newsweek article, the Clinton Foundation also accepted donations from a firm that was violating nuclear trade sanctions against Iran.  Interpipe, a Cyprus-incorporated company owned by Ukrainian oligarch Victor Pinchuk, sold oil pipelines to Iran in 2011 and 2012 in violation of U.S. sanctions but was not sanctioned for these sales while Clinton was Secretary of State.  Fox News host Megyn Kelly reported last night on “The Kelly File” that between 2009 and 2013, Clinton Foundation received at least $8.6 million from the Victor Pinchuk Foundation.  Kelly reported that Pinchuk also pledged more than $20 million more to the foundation.

The Fox News Channel will air a special report anchored by Bret Baier, “The Tangled Clinton Web” on the Clinton Foundation scandal on Friday, April 24 at 10 PM ET.

For years, the Clinton’s have glided past the sea of scandals that engulfed Bill Clinton’s presidency and Hillary Clinton’s complicity in the Obama administration’s foreign policy disasters.  I believe the Clinton Foundation story dwarfs all previous Clinton scandals because it appears to be an unprecedented case of foreign governments and entities buying influence with a U.S. government official.  But the Uranium One and Pinchuk contributions could make this story significantly worse since they suggest the Clinton’s were prepared enrich themselves even at the cost of endangering U.S. national security.

The Clinton Foundation scandal obviously requires media attention, congressional hearings, and an investigation by the Justice Department.  Despite their unmatched skill at deflecting controversy and blaming their enemies, could this this scandal be too big even for Bill and Hillary Clinton to skate by?

KRAUTHAMMER: CLINTON FOUNDATION ‘GIGANTIC ACCESS INFLUENCE MACHINE’

How DHS Ineptitude Facilitates Terrorist Operations

Image: Abdirahman Sheik MohamudFrontpage, April 20, 2015 by Michael Cutler:

On April 16, 2015 Fox News posted an Associated Press report, “Ohio man accused of traveling to Syria, plotting terror act.” [1]

My focus today will be on the way that the alleged terrorist was provided with United States citizenship and consequently, a United States passport. The adjudications process failed to uncover material facts that would have barred the individual, Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud, from becoming a naturalized citizen and hence receive that highly valuable United States passport.

The immigration component of this story and similar stories, has been largely ignored by the media, although the issue about his having immigrated to the United States from Somalia and then becoming a naturalized U.S. citizen was raised in some news reports.

The complete immigration component of this case is extremely important, as you will see — indeed, this element, had it worked as it should have, could have thwarted the ability of this alleged terrorist to have traveled to Syria to join his brother who was killed in combat while fighting on the side of terrorists. This is why I frequently make the point that our borders and our immigration laws are our first and last line of defense against international terrorists and transnational criminals.

While the Fox News headline simply identified Mohamud as being an “Ohio man” the body of the article did provide solid information about his country of birth and his having become a naturalized citizen, unlike many other news reports that were content to simply describe the alleged terrorist as simply being “An Ohio Man.”

Here is how the Fox News news report began:

COLUMBUS, Ohio – An Ohio man traveled to Syria and trained alongside terrorists, then returned to the U.S. with plans to attack a military base or a prison, according to a federal indictment announced Thursday.

Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud, a U.S. citizen originally from Somalia, wanted to “kill three or four American soldiers execution style,” according to the indictment. Attacking the prison was part of a backup plan if that didn’t work, the charges said.

The indictment also says Mohamud’s brother, Abdifatah Aden, fought with Jabhat al-Nusrah, a State Department-designated terrorist group, until he was killed in battle in Syria in June 2014.

Mohamud, 23, of Columbus was charged with supporting terrorism, supporting the same terrorist group and making a false statement involving international terrorism when he allegedly lied to an Ohio FBI agent by saying he was in Istanbul when authorities say he was in Syria.

Here is critical bit information contained in the report:

Mohamud became a U.S. citizen in February 2014, according to the government.

The government didn’t say how it learned of the plot, but the indictment mentions two “unnamed” associates of Mohamud in the U.S. to whom he gave information about his activities, including a video of Mohamud carrying an AK-47.

One of them said he believed Mohamud was trying to recruit him to participate in the plot, according to the indictment. The government also said Mohamud made terrorism-related Facebook posts in 2013.

An April 16, 2015 New York Post article. “ISIS-trained Ohio man was ordered to attack US: feds [2]” pinned down the nexus between Mohamud becoming a United States citizen and his departure for the Middle East in these paragraphs:

An Ohio man who left the US a year ago to train with Islamic State jihadists was nabbed by the feds Thursday for allegedly plotting to unleash terror in the country, authorities said.

Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud, 23, of Columbus, left in April 2014 — two months after becoming a naturalized citizen —to train and fight with the extremists in Syria, the Justice Department said, ABC News reported.

Islamic State wannabe Mohamud — who has posted the group’s propaganda online — was charged with providing material support to al Nusrah, an al Qaeda affiliate in Syria, according to the feds.

The jihadists trained him in shooting, home break-ins, explosives and hand-to-hand combat, authorities said. He was then ordered to return to the US and commit a terror act, an indictment said.

He returned in June 2014.

A review of his indictment [3] will dispel any doubts (should any exist) as to whether or not Mohamud made acquiring United States citizenship and a U.S. passport an integral part of his plans, you need to review in which it is alleged that he had communicated with his brother Aden who asked him how his “papers” were coming along. He responded by saying that, having obtained his U.S. citizenship, he was waiting to receive his U.S. passport before traveling to meet Aden. The indictment states that Aden was killed in combat in Syria in June 2014.

When disclosures were made about the NSA spying on Americans the argument was made that this was done to protect our citizens and our nation. I am cautiously supportive of appropriate measures, within reason, being taken to protect us, however, for the NSA to scrutinize U.S. citizens, yet apparently failing to uncover the postings of the alleged terrorist in this case, raises many serious questions.

If the NSA did have this information, was it shared with the DHS?

The indictment states that Mohamud was posting material online about his desire to carry out terror attacks in 2013. How did USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services), an agency that is under the aegis of the DHS, conduct its investigation into his application to become a naturalized American citizen at least six months later and then approve that application?

Back when I was an INS Special Agent, applications for naturalization required that a GMC (Good Moral Conduct) investigation was conducted to determine that the alien not only had no criminal convictions but also met other, more stringent standards. Today our government makes a big deal about running fingerprints to verify criminal histories.

A critical question is whether or not any GMC field investigations are still being conducted by USCIS. Indeed, how are applications for citizenship vetted? The likelihood is that there are no such field investigations being conducted. Even without knowing about the FaceBook postings noted in the indictment, it would not be a stretch of the imagination to say that individuals who know Mohamud would have potentially raised some questions about his hostility to the United States.

Let’s in fact consider the obvious in this specific case: Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud immigrated to the United States from Somalia, a country that has a strong association with terrorist organizations. In point of fact, there have been a succession of reports of young members of the Somali community, from Minnesota and elsewhere, abruptly leaving the United States to join terror groups in the Middle East. At the time he applied for naturalization Mohamud was in his early twenties, an age often shared by terrorists. USCIS adjudicates hundreds of thousands of applications for naturalization each and every year and consequently there is an abject lack of resources available to thoroughly screen each application.

However given the ongoing concerns about terrorism, it would certainly seem that applications filed by those who may be prone to involvement with terrorism should come under extra scrutiny including an actual field investigation.

There is ample justification for such investigation. The USCIS Policy Manual, contains specific guidelines about how the naturalization process is to be conducted. The obvious question hopefully that will be asked at a hearing that should be conducted by Congress is whether or not USCIS is meeting these standards. The consequences can, as we have seen, be of grave significance.

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Recommendation: Targeting travel is at least as powerful a weapon against terrorists as targeting their money. The United States should combine terrorist travel intelligence, operations, and law enforcement in a strategy to intercept terrorists, find terrorist travel facilitators, and constrain terrorist mobility.

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LISTEN: A leading national security advisor and Islamic law expert explains how and why America is losing to jihadists

Major Stephen Coughlin

Major Stephen Coughlin

The Blaze, by Benjamin Weingarten, April 13, 2015:

Major Stephen Coughlin (Ret.), a decorated intelligence officer known as the Pentagon’s leading expert on Islamic law has authored a forthcoming book, “Catastrophic Failure: Blindfolding America in the Face of the Jihad,” that serves as a damning indictment of America’s national security establishment in the face of the global jihad, and provides a chilling message to the American people.

We had the opportunity to discuss Coughlin’s new book in a wide-ranging interview that you can find below.

 

During our discussion, Coughlin goes into great depth on the thesis of his book, providing keen insights into the nature and doctrinal basis of the threat posed by Islamic supremacists, America’s conscious purging of the very lexicon necessary to describe the nature of the threat on its own terms, and as a result of postmodernism, political correctness and the pervasiveness of what Coughlin describes as culturally Marxist narratives — along with the gentle prodding of Muslim Brotherhood influences on our media and other core institutions — the ignorance, incoherence and willful blindness of America’s “stupid” national security establishment.

The end result that Coughlin sees is a completely compromised security situation in which America is able to win in military engagements, while completely losing — to the degree to which it is even fighting — on the ideological warfare battleground where the Muslim Brotherhood and its Western proxies devote a significant amount of their efforts.

This civilizational jihad effort, and Western ignorance of principles like jihad, abrogation and dawah, which Coughlin describes during our interview, evidences itself in everything from what Coughlin sees as the disastrous policy of Countering Violent Extremism (CVE), to the Fort Hood shooting, to Iranian nuclear negotiations, which we examine through the lens of the 7th century Treaty of Hudaybiyyah.

Below are several of the more critical portions of our interview, but for those concerned about the state of national security as it relates to the global jihad, we urge you to listen to the conversation in full.

The Three Words the National Security Establishment Won’t Use Essential to Understanding the Enemy

 

How the Muslim Brotherhood is Working Its Way Towards Civilizational Jihad in America

 

How CVE Supports the Postmodernist Narrative, and Deems Veterans Returning from War a Threat

 

The Derelection of Duty of America’s National Security Establishment

 

How Ignorance of Islam Deceives Our National Security Leaders to Our Detriment

 

What a 7th Century Treaty Tells Us About the Iran Nuclear “Deal”

 

How Left Wing Narratives Have Created a “Stupid” National Security Establishment and Aided the Jihad

America is Losing the War Against Sunni Jihadists and Empowering The Shia Caliphate

isis-640x480Breitbartby DR. SEBASTIAN GORKA, March 13, 2015:

With its support of the Baghdad government and the wrong rebels in Syria, the US Administration is doing the unthinkable: strengthening the spread of Tehran’s control in the Middle East and at the same time also helping the Sunni extremists to grow in power.

The American strategy against Global Jihad is having the opposite effect of that intended. And even key government officials are beginning to openly admit the failure of our policies.

The Director of National Intelligence, retired General James Clapper, recently testified that the terrorist threat is worse than at any other time in history and Major General Michael Nagata, responsible for planning our response to the civil war in Syria, has stated that the Islamic State is now more dangerous than Al Qaeda.

Seemingly just to prove the broader point about the global appeal of Jihad against the “infidel,” ISIS has just accepted the African terrorist group Boko Haram’s pledge of allegiance, meaning that the Sunni Caliphate established last year in Mosul by Abu Bakr al Baghdadi now officially covers any territory that Boko Haram controls in Nigeria.

The spread of ISIS influence is not just about territorial control, it is about the staggering success of its international call to holy war, with an estimated 19,000 westerners having left their homes to wage jihad. The visual below, based upon a British think-tank’s unclassified research, shows just how international a recruitment wave this is, with almost every country on the map sending recruits to fight in just Syria alone.

image

Given all the evidence, even the most influential liberal commentators and pundits have admitted the failure of the Obama strategy against “Violent Extremism.” Writing recently in the New York Times, Thomas Friedman stated: “When you don’t call things by their real name, you always get in trouble. And this administration, so fearful of being accused of Islamophobia, is refusing to make any link to radical Islam” and added that as a nation “We’ve entered the theater of the absurd.” The left wing Atlantic magazine even dedicated 11,000 words to an article proving the Islamic roots of ISIS and the religious justification for its violence.

Fourteen years after the September 11th attacks and half way through President Obama’s second term, how can we explain a failure so egregious that even the pillars of the liberal left are finally prepared to call it out? The key mistakes upon which the current strategy is built are:

  • The White House’s belief in the ability to “degrade and destroy” ISIS through air power alone
  • The belief that Iran can be leveraged as an ally against ISIS
  • Gambling on Islamic rebels such as the Free Syrian Army as a way to remove President Assad of Syria, and mostly important:
  • The belief that ideology is irrelevant to the enemy we face and that this war can be won solely through military means or local proxies.

Each one of these premises is flawed and is undermining US national interests as well as the safety and stability of our regional allies.

Firstly, in the history of modern military air power, since the first hand grenade was thrown out of a biplane over a century ago, the number of insurgencies like ISIS that have been defeated by airstrikes alone is zero. Insurgents are defined by their capability to hold ground. This is what separates a rag-tag terrorist group from a real threat like the Islamic State. As a result, their control of territory by ground forces can only be countered by other ground forces contesting the same space and eventually destroying or pushing them out. This is not a call for the deployment of US troops, but for the recognition of the fact that only a ground response– for example, made up of Iraqi, Kurdish, Jordanian and Egyptian units– can defeat ISIS. (According to my sources even Ben Rhodes, the Deputy National Security Adviser, has admitted that US airstrikes are not working because we do not have the intelligence on the ground to know what to hit.) Any such response on the ground will not happen without US leadership and support, and in this President Sisi of Egypt will play the pivotal role even if the Obama Administration doesn’t like the former General. Without Egypt’s military might, the Islamic State will continue to grow and threaten the US even more than it already does.

By bringing Iran into our plans against ISIS, we are in fact strengthening a rival brand of Jihad. The war today in Syria and Iraq is not about the corruption of the former Maliki government in Baghdad or the human rights record of President Assad of Syria. It is about whose version of Islam will dominate the region. One only has to read or listen to Abu Bakr al Baghdadi’s sermon from the Grand Mosque Mosul in which he declared the Islamic State. The speech is about reestablishing the theocratic empire of Islam – the Caliphate – under Sunni control. ISIS even posted their real intent on social media:

Iran, on the other hand, also believes in the need to re-establish the Caliphate, but under its control as a Shia empire, and the wars in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen, must be understood as the re-ignition of a 1,400 year old argument about who should control Islam. In fact, that is how the Sunni and Shia division of Islam occurred after the death of Mohammad, and those are the stakes for Tehran. The fact that the mullahs now control five regional capitals– Tehran, Baghdad, Beirut, Damascus, and now Sanaa– means that despite ISIS’s growth, the Shia extremists are winning. The White House’s belief that Tehran is an altruistic foe of Sunni jihadists like ISIS is driven by shortsightedness and a lack of understanding of the historic battle that is in play, and will simply strengthen the Shia proto-Caliphate, eventually even to include Tehran’s acquisition of nuclear weapons should the nascent deal the President is pushing come to fruition.

By contrast, in Syria, since 2011, the administration has been driven by its pathological hatred of Assad and the belief that, despite his enjoying the support of both Beijing and Moscow, Assad can be removed through the support of indigenous rebels such as the Free Syria Army. Speaking to the few true moderates that have organizational capability in theater, the sad truth is that we have chosen the wrong rebels. The more organized and loudest rebel groups are not the moderates but the true jihadists, some of whom have in fact formally allied themselves with ISIS. (This is not just a failure of the White House, but also the Republicans in Congress, especially Senator John McCain, who has the uncanny knack of supporting those who would kill us after they have killed all the Shia in the region).

Most disturbing of all is the Administrations willful dismissal of the real center of gravity in this war: the ideology of Global Jihadism. With its constant refrain that “upstream causes” such as poverty and lack of education are the real reason for terrorist violence, the White House displays a total ignorance of the groups we face today, from Al Qaeda to ISIS, from the Fort Hood shooter to the Tsarnaev brothers who killed and maimed hundreds at the Boston bombing.

As political correctness has been forced onto the practice of national security in general and counterterrorism specifically, we see absurd conclusions being drawn and fantastical policies being implemented. The recent international summit on “Combating Violent Extremism” hosted by the President and the White House assiduously preached repeatedly that religion has nothing to do with ISIS or Al Qaeda and concluded with this visual that all we need is more community outreach:

White House Summit

Of course, if poverty and lack of education were the drivers of terrorist violence, then half of the population of India would be terrorists. But they aren’t. Why? Because terrorist violence does not happen in a vacuum. It requires a spark, a narrative that acts as the justification to violence and the catalyst to mobilize people to do horrific acts against their fellow man. That ideology can be secular – for example, the communist terrorism of the Weather Underground led by Bernadine Dohrn and Bill Ayers – or religious, such as ISIS. How else, for example, can one understand why the Islamic state would behead the 21 Coptic Christians whose murder they filmed on the shores of Libya, but instead burn alive the Jordanian pilot Lieutenant Mu’ath al-Kaseasbeh? These decisions were not random.

For the jihadists of ISIS, the Copts are kuffar, infidels, and as the Koran teaches, the infidel must be “smitten on the neck” (e.g. Koran Ch. 47 V. 4). However, Lt. Kaseasbeh was a Muslim, a Jordanian Sunni, who in taking arms up against the Caliphate made himself an “apostate” and as a result he had to be killed not as an infidel but as one who committed the sin of leaving Islam and therefore, he was to be treated as if he were in hell, i.e. burnt alive. Religion is therefore so important to this war that it even defines the way in which the terrorists will kill you should you be captured.

Today, the Global Jihad has two brands. It is a war of the “Sunni Coke” versus the “Shia Pepsi” which also targets the local minorities caught in the middle, most especially the ancient Christians of the region.(Incredibly, the Parliament of the European Union seems to understand the threat better than the White House based upon the resolution it just issued against ISIS.) The powers that be have allowed politics and ideology to distort and pervert the practice of national security to such an extent that, incredibly, we are not only helping the Sunni Jihadists, but also the Shia extremists of Iran. Whichever side wins the war for the crown of the Caliph is irrelevant, since once their immediate foe is vanquished we, the infidel West, will be their next target.

Sebastian Gorka Ph.D. is the Major General Matthew C. Horner Chair of Military Theory at the Marine Corps University. You can see his briefing from the Global Counterterrorism Summit on Why ISIS is Much More Dangerous than Al Qaeda here and follow him on Twitter at: @SebGorka.

Legal Experts: Future U.S. President Could Revoke Bad Nuke Deal With Iran

John Kerry / AP

John Kerry / AP

Washington Free Beacon, by Daniel Wiser, March, 12, 2015:

Legal experts are refuting a claim by Iran’s foreign minister that revoking a potential deal on the country’s nuclear program would violate international law, amid confusion Wednesday regarding whether or not the deal the State Department is negotiating will be in any way legally binding.

Javad Zarif, Tehran’s chief representative in the ongoing nuclear talks among the United States, Iran, and five other world powers, criticized on Tuesday an open letter sent by 47 Republican senators concerning the negotiations. While the lawmakers said in their missive that a future president or Congress could revoke or substantially alter a nuclear pact, Zarif responded that such changes would be illegal under international statutes.

“I wish to enlighten the authors that if the next administration revokes any agreement with the stroke of a pen, as they boast, it will have simply committed a blatant violation of international law,” he said, according to Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

However, the U.S. State Department asserted on Tuesday that a prospective nuclear agreement with Iran would be “nonbinding.” Secretary of State John Kerry also confirmed in congressional testimony on Wednesday that the Obama administration is “not negotiating a legally binding plan” but one from “executive to executive,” Politico reported. Kerry insisted such a deal would still “have a capacity of enforcement.”

Jeremy Rabkin, a law professor at George Mason University and an expert in international law and Constitutional history, said in an email that “nonbinding” by definition means that the United States “will not violate international law if we don’t adhere to its terms”—contrary to Zarif’s assertion.

“In other words we’re saying it is NOT an international obligation, just a statement of intent,” he said.

The legal nature of a potential nuclear agreement remains a matter of dispute.

The GOP senators wrote about the necessity of congressional oversight for “binding international agreements” in their letter. But on Wednesday, Kerry rejected that  characterization as “absolutely incorrect,” because the plan would not be legally binding.

The potential deal’s executive and nonbinding nature means Congress could not amend it, Kerry said.

Rabkin said the question of whether a U.S. president can institute a binding international agreement without congressional approval is disputed among legal scholars, but the State Department’s declaration that an Iran deal would be nonbinding places it in a different category.

“What Kerry seemed to say was not that his Iran deal would be in the same category but that it would not be legally binding in any sense, just a kind of memorandum of understanding,” Rabkin said. “I wonder whether he understood what he was saying. It was more or less conceding that what Cotton’s letter said was the administration’s own view—that the ‘agreement’ with Iran would not be legally binding, so (presumably) not something that could bind Obama’s successor.”

Sen. Tom Cotton (R., Ark.), one of the lead authors of the GOP’s letter to Iran, expressed confusion on Wednesday about the State Department’s classification of a nuclear deal with Tehran.

“Important question: if deal with Iran isn’t legally binding, then what’s to keep Iran from breaking said deal and developing a bomb?” Cotton tweeted.

John Yoo, a law professor at University of California, Berkeley and a former Justice Department official in the George W. Bush administration, wrote on Wednesday that Cotton and his fellow senators had it “exactly right” in their letter on matters of Constitutional law.

“The Cotton letter is right, because if President Obama strikes a nuclear deal with Iran using only [an executive agreement], he is only committing to refrain from exercising his executive power—i.e., by not attacking Iran or by lifting sanctions under power delegated by Congress,” Yoo wrote on National Review Online. “Not only could the next president terminate the agreement; Obama himself could terminate the deal.”

Additionally, Yoo said that under the Constitution’s Foreign Commerce Clause, Congress could still apply financial pressure on Iran regardless of an executive agreement.

“Obama’s executive agreement cannot prevent Congress from imposing mandatory, severe sanctions on Iran without the possibility of presidential waiver (my preferred solution for handling the Iranian nuclear crisis right now),” he said. “Obama can agree to allow Iran to keep a nuclear-processing capability; Congress can cut Iran out of the world trading and financial system.”

“As a matter of constitutional law, the Cotton letter should be no more controversial than a letter that simply enclosed a copy of the U.S. Constitution (without President Obama’s editing),” he added.

Also see:

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Published on Mar 12, 2015 by EnGlobal News World

What Are You Really Willing to Do to Stop Terrorists From Entering the U.S.?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFrontpage, March 5, 2015 by Michael Cutler:

The question that serves as the title of my commentary today is the question every American, irrespective of political affiliation, must ask their elected senators and congressional representatives.

For all too many of our leaders, while they claim that they would stop at nothing to protect America and Americans, the reality is far different. Despite their claims to the contrary, they will not do anything to truly secure our borders or instill real integrity to the immigration system or the process by which applications for visas or immigration benefits are adjudicated.

This is the dire reality our nation and our citizens face today.

My article today will provide crystal clear evidence that our immigration system has no integrity and that this lack of integrity threatens the survival of our nation and our citizens and that nothing being proposed under the aegis of Comprehensive Immigration Reform will address these deadly vulnerabilities.

The importance of the question about what would our leaders be willing to do to prevent the entry and embedding of terrorists and the issue of terrorism came into sharp focus during the stirring and powerful speech given by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on March 3, 2015 when he addressed a joint session of the U.S. Congress to voice his extreme concerns about what the sponsorship of terrorism by Iran not only means for Israel but for the United States as well. Indeed, during his remarks the Prime Minister referred to the unsuccessful attempts, over three years ago, by Iranian-backed terrorists to bomb the Saudi Embassy in Washington, DC and kill the Saudi ambassador. The Israeli embassy in our Capitol was also a potential bombing target for those terrorists.

On March 21, 2012 the House Committee on Homeland Security that was then chaired by New York Congressman Peter King conducted a hearing into these planned operations. The topic of the hearing was, “Iran, Hezbollah, and the Threat to the Homeland.”

The same day as that hearing, the Huffington Post published a report about that hearing, “Peter King: Iran May Have ‘Hundreds’ Of Hezbollah Agents In U.S.”

Here is an excerpt from that news report:

“As Iran moves closer to nuclear weapons and there is increasing concern over war between Iran and Israel, we must also focus on Iran’s secret operatives and their number one terrorist proxy force, Hezbollah, which we know is in America,” said New York Rep. Peter King at a Wednesday hearing of his committee.

The hearing, which featured former government officials and the director of intelligence analysis for the New York Police Department, follows afoiled plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in Washington, D.C., and testimony by Director of National Intelligence James Clapper in late January that Iran’s leaders are “more willing to conduct an attack inside the United States in response to real or perceived U.S. actions that threaten the regime.”

On April 21, 2010 the Washington Times published a disturbing report, “Iran boosts Qods shock troops in Venezuela,” predicated on a Pentagon report to Congress on Iran’s military operations in Latin America. Here is an excerpt:

The report gives no details on the activities of the Iranians in Venezuela and Latin America. Iranian-backed terrorists have conducted few attacks in the region. However, U.S. intelligence officials say Qods operatives are developing networks of terrorists in the region who could be called to attack the United States in the event of a conflict over Iran’s nuclear program.

On May 30, 2013 UPI posted a report, “Immigrant allegedly failed to reveal Hezbollah membership.”

Here is an excerpt from this report:

Wissam Allouche, 44, who became a citizen in 2009, was arrested last week by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, the San Antonio Express-News reported Thursday. He has also been charged with failing to reveal membership in Hezbollah, the Lebanese militant group classified as terrorist by the U.S. government, when he sought a security clearance.

A federal judge ordered Allouche held without bail after a hearing Wednesday.

Allouche has lived in the United States for more than a decade. His attorney, Cynthia Orr, said he owned a gas station at one point.

Allouche formerly worked for L3 Communications, a military contractor that supplies interpreters and translators. He spent several months with the company in Iraq.

It is inconceivable that any politician would not want to prevent terrorists from entering the United States and launching deadly terrorist attacks. However, the failures of our immigration system undeniably enable international terrorists to enter the United States and, indeed, facilitates their ability to hide in plain sight and embed themselves in communities across our nation as they go about their deadly preparations to launch an attack.

There is nothing in any proposed legislation that addresses or remedies these critical failures in the immigration system.

Read more 

Nearly Six Years After Obama’s Cairo Speech, Middle East in Total Disarray

AP Photo/Hassan Ammar

AP Photo/Hassan Ammar

Breitbart, by FRED GEDRICH, March 2, 2015:

The Arab world is rife with political turmoil and violence. The Sunni Muslim Islamic State in Iraq and Syria and other jihadi terrorists are continuing their savagery within its boundaries, and Iran’s theocratic terrorist rulers are still exporting and/or solidifying their brand of the Shiite Muslim Islamic Revolution to Arab countries and territories. And the Obama administration appears unable or unwilling to effectively deal with each emerging crisis there.

The competing goals of Sunni and Shiite jihadists are to dominate the Arab world, and their forces and surrogates are engaged in nasty fights for supremacy throughout the region. The area they seek to control generally spans 21 Middle East and North Africa countries as well as territories under Palestinian control in Gaza and the West Bank. Its riches include 364 million people, the world’s largest known oil and gas reserves which fuel developed world economies, and strategic waterways where the petroleum-based commerce flows. About 92 percent of the Arab World population is Muslim (336 million), of which 87 percent are Sunni Muslim and 13 percent Shiite Muslim.

In 2009, U.S. President Barack Obama spoke in Cairo, Egypt and promised the Arab and greater Muslim world a ‘new beginning’ in relations with the United States.  However, hopefulness turned into hopelessness for tens of millions of Arab world residents after the speech and Arab Spring which followed. Consider the current state of affairs:

  • Freedom House –a non-profit global freedom watchdog – ranked Middle East and North Africa countries (e.g., most of the Arab world) in 2015 as the world’s most freedom-less area with only Tunisia granting citizens political rights and civil liberties to qualify as a free nation.
  • Freedom House also reported that not one Arab country or territory provided the necessary legal environment, political influences, and economic conditions to guarantee a truly free press.
  • The U.S. State Department reports that 29 of 59 groups on its Foreign Terrorist Organization List have gestated and operate in Arab countries and territories, all of which endanger local residents, Israel, and U.S. citizens and security interests. Twelve FTO’s were added during Obama’s presidency.
  • The U.S. State Department reports that three of four designated state sponsors of terror – Iran, Syria, and Sudan – apply their deadly trade in Arab countries. One of them, Iran, has an illegal nuclear weapons development program.
  • Four Arab states and one territory – Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Yemen and Gaza– are heavily dependent on Iran’s terrorist leaders for their governments’ survival.
  • Five Arab countries – Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen – are either failed states or don’t exercise sovereignty over their boundaries.
  • The average annual income of Arab world residents is $9,700, which is 26 percent below the global average of $13,100, with a wide income disparity between rich nations like Qatar and poor nations like Somalia.

The persons most responsible for perpetuating these conditions are an assortment of Islamic terror groups and extremists and authoritarian leaders. However, the Middle East and North African landscape is littered with the remnants of dubious Obama administration decisions that contributed to them ranging from the premature withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq; the Syrian ‘redline;’ the Libyan military misadventure; calling ISIS a junior al-Qaeda varsity team; unwillingness to admit jihadi terrorists are part of Islam; refusal to support Iran’s peaceful Green Revolutionaries, and thinking Iran’s terrorist state can be part of any peaceful Arab world solution.

Muslims consider the dominion of Islam as the central pillar of their global-domination political program. Sunnis and Shiites disagree sharply on which of them, and who, should lead. They agree that the prime basis of governance and administration of justice should be Islamic (Shariah) law as enunciated in the Koran and traditions of Muhammad, and further elaborated by classical Muslim legists.

The global Muslim population contains Islamists and jihadists.  An Islamist is any Muslim who wants to impose and enforce Shariah – whether by violent or nonviolent means. A jihadist is an Islamic terrorist.

Shariah law totally subordinates women and mandates many other human rights violations, such as relegating non-Muslim minorities to a much lower legal status than Muslims and dispensing cruel and unusual punishment. It also rejects freedom of speech and conscience and mandates aggressive jihad until the world is brought under Islamic hegemony.

In forging a path to some kind of durable regional peace, it is not only important to understand the aforementioned Arab world problems and radical Islamic-driven terrorism but to effectively do something about them. Egypt’s Muslim President, Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi, showed the way by removing the repressive Muslim Brothers from power during a popular revolution, publicly meeting with non-Muslims being persecuted by the various jihadists, and calling on clerics to reform Islam by eliminating rhetoric that fosters violence.

The Arab world is the epicenter of a global jihadist threat, and it is time for the U.S. and its allies, regional and otherwise, to also act diplomatically, economically, and militarily if necessary against all of those jihadist forces – including ISIS and Iran – operating there who are using violence and Shariah to acquire and retain power.  However, seeking to degrade and defeat the Sunni Muslim jihadist brand while leaving the Shiite Muslim jihadist brand intact, as the U.S. is currently doing, will only perpetuate problems for those Arabs and others who genuinely seek a better life and to live in freedom.

The time for decisive and effective action is now. Regional and world peace depends on it.

Fred Gedrich is a foreign policy and national security analyst and served in the U.S. departments of Defense and State.

Vandalism in Arizona Shut Down Internet, Cellphone, Telephone Service Across State

Optical fiber and electronic component / AP

Optical fiber and electronic component / AP

Washington Free Beacon, by Adam Kredo, Feb. 27, 2015:

Cellphone, Internet, and telephone services across half of Arizona went dark on Wednesday after vandals sliced a sensitive fiber optic cable, according to those familiar with the situation. The incident is raising concerns about the safety of U.S. infrastructure.

The outage shut down critical services across large parts of the state, preventing individuals from using their phones, bank and ATM cards, and the Internet. Critical services, such as police and state government databases, as well as banks and hospitals, also were affected as a result of the vandalism.

The services first went dead around noon MST on Wednesday, causing complete service interruptions across half the state, from Phoenix to such northern cities as Sedona, Prescott, and Cotton Wood, according to an official from CenturyLink, the Louisiana-based communications company that owns the severed line.

“There was a vandalism that took place on a fiber optic cable that basically runs from Phoenix to Northern Arizona,” said Alex Juarez, a spokesman for CenturyLink in Arizona.

The line, which is composed of extremely thick cable, appeared to have been cut with a hacksaw, according to Juarez. Phoenix police are currently investigating the incident and say they have yet to determine a motivation for the crime.

“We’re not sure what the intent was, but they were able to cut the fiber optic cable, possibly using a hacksaw,” Juarez explained. “It looks like a pretty straight cut.”

CenturyLink personnel responded quickly to the scene to locate where the line was cut and assess the damage. They were eventually able to repair the line and get services back up and running in the early morning hours of Thursday.

“Obviously CenturyLink takes a high concern in security. Anytime there’s an outage, it impacts customers and business. In this instance, it affected everything from banks to hospitals to state agencies, you name it,” Juarez said. “So it’s a high priority to have these lines secure. These types of instances do not happen very often.”

The cable is located in a desert area north of Phoenix, meaning it is not a site routinely accessed by passersby.

“It’s a desert area, so it’s very remote, extremely remote,” Juarez said.

While CenturyLink declined to provide specific numbers of those impacted, Juarez said that it was “a large number of customers” over a large portion of the state.

Phoenix Police Department officials said that officers assessed the scene following a call about “criminal damage.”

Police say vandals must have used heavy equipment to expose the cable.

“The fiber optic cable was encased in metal piping which would have to have been accessed prior to reaching the optics,” the police said in a statement. “This indicates a power tool of type may have been used.”

Security experts familiar with these types of incidents said they highlight the vulnerability of America’s critical infrastructure. In states across the nation, vandals have gone after power transformer lines and the electric grid in acts that have been characterized by authorities as forms of sabotage.

For some, incidents of this nature have sparked concerns that a domestic or international terrorist could tamper with U.S. infrastructure, throwing state and federal governments into disarray.

“This doesn’t look like ‘vandalism’ but rather like sabotage,” said Rachel Ehrenfeld, the founder and CEO of the American Center for Democracy (ACD) and its Economic Warfare Institute (EWI). “Next time it could be both the fiber optic cables and a cell-tower or two.”

“This reinforces the need to better protect our communication channels and prepare backup systems wherever possible,” she said.

Nicholas Hanlon, an official with the Center for Security Policy (CSP), which has long warned about vulnerabilities to the U.S. electric grid and other key services, said that would-be terrorists could attack these sites with relative ease.

“The Phoenix outage tells us that terrorists and otherwise hostile groups don’t have to probe our defenses to find soft targets in our electrical infrastructure when vandals can do it for them,” Hanlon said. “NERC [The North American Electric Reliability Corporation] and the electrical industry tell us they are doing good work on their security practices one day. The next day they tell you national security is not their job.”

“Bottom line, the NERC/FERC [Federal Energy Regulatory Committee] regulatory regime is not getting the job done on the security front,” Hanlon said.