ISLAMIC STATE: Big Explosions, Sex Slaves And Female Operatives

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U.S. considers whether ISIS wives playing key role in operations  (cnn.com)

Washington (CNN)The U.S. is now looking at the possibility that wives of ISIS figures may play a greater role in operations and communications than previously thought because the terror group believes U.S. intelligence pays less attention to them.

Last month, an Army Delta Force raid in eastern Syria killed Abu Sayyaf, a senior ISIS leader involved in finance and other operations, and also led to the capture of his wife. The raid yielded significant intelligence that U.S. officials said adds to their understanding of ISIS’s structure and communications.

Several officials cautioned, however, that all of the intelligence gathered and information gained from the interrogation of the captured wife must be vetted and confirmed.

READ: Carter: ISIS raid a ‘significant blow’ to terror group

As CNN has previously reported, a U.S. official said the raid netted terabytes worth of data in external hard drives and hard copy, a higher volume than had originally been anticipated. The U.S. is reviewing it all to determine if it leads to anything that can be acted upon.

A second official said one U.S. airstrike in eastern Syria just a few days ago that killed a local ISIS emir was conducted on the basis of information gained from the raid.

Read more

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REUTERS/KHALIL ASHAWI

REUTERS/KHALIL ASHAWI

Pentagon: ISIS Using Tunnels to Bomb Targets in Iraq, Syria (breitbart.com)

The Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) in Iraq and rebels in Syria are using tunnel bombs as a potent new weapon, an upgrade to an ancient tactic, according to a Pentagon organization.

“Updating an ancient tactic, Islamic State militants — as well as rebels in Syria — are digging virtually undetectable tunnels, then planting bombs to blow up buildings and other targets,” reports Defense One, quoting JIEDDO (Joint IED Defeat Organization), the Pentagon arm focused on defeating the use of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) as a weapon.

Defense One learned from Pentagon officials and documents that several dozen tunnel bombs have been used by rebels in Syria while ISIS detonated them last week to capture Ramadi, the capital of Anbar, Iraq’s largest province.

The concept behind detonating a tunnel bomb is reportedly quite simple: dig long enough to reach your intended target, plant explosives, and hit the detonator.

“This below the surface attack is particularly destructive to buildings and is appearing increasingly in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria,” said JIEDDO at a recent briefing, according to Defense One.

“The use of tunnels for IEDs and other purposes will continue to provide a low risk strategic advantage to extremist organizations and therefore requires continued development efforts and fielding of effective mitigation techniques,” it added.

Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad has designated all groups attempting to topple him, which include ISIS and al-Qaeda affiliate Nusra Front, as rebels.

ISIS in Iraq and rebels in Syria have detonated at least 45 tunnel bombs in the past two years, JIEDDO said.

Although most have been in Syria, U.S. officials told Defense One that ISIS is building a network of tunnels, as well as bunkers and trenches, in Iraq.

“In Syria, rebels have used tunnels bombs to attack government forces under the control of Bashar al-Assad,” reports Defense One. “Many of these tunnels were dug with hand tools to avoid detection.”

“In Iraq, ISIS used tunnel attacks to devastating effect in their assault on Ramadi. On March 11, ISIS forces detonated a tunnel bomb under an Iraqi army headquarters, killing an estimated 22 people,” it adds. “The blast consumed seven tons of explosives in an 800-foot long tunnel that took two months to dig, according to the JIEDDO briefing. On March 15, a second tunnel bomb was used to attack Iraqi Security Forces. The city fell two months later.”

During the briefing, JIEDDO noted that ISIS frequently disseminates videos on social media showing the use of tunnel bombs on its targets.

“As part of an information operations campaign, these attacks are documented and widely proliferated via social media which increases the likelihood of migration to other conflict areas or adoption by other extremist organizations on a worldwide basis,” reportedly said JIEDDO.

The Pentagon organization revealed that tunnel bombs are being used to target military checkpoints, buildings, and other protected establishments.

It can take less than 30 days to dig a short tunnel, while longer ones (no more than 1 mile in length) can take up to nine months to complete, said JIEDDO.

Defense One notes that tunnels have been weaponized by Iran proxy Hezbollah and Hamas in Gaza as a means to smuggle weapons and attack Israel.

“Now their use is spreading, and extending to direct attacks,” explains the article.

“Beyond bombs, ISIS is believed to be using tunnels to move weapons and avoid detection by American and ally fighter jets and drones. (ISIS may even be exploiting Saddam Hussein’s own tunnel network, which is thought to stretch for 60 miles between palaces, military strongholds, and houses,” it adds. “During the U.S. invasion in 2003, Saddam’s forces used these tunnels to move weapons and as hideouts.)”

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Zainab Bangura, UN secretary general’s special representative on sexual violence in conflict, speaks at the G8 Foreign Ministers meeting in London on April 11, 2013. (PHOTO: WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)

Zainab Bangura, UN secretary general’s special representative on sexual violence in conflict, speaks at the G8 Foreign Ministers meeting in London on April 11, 2013.
(PHOTO: WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)

ISIS Sells Sex Slave Girls for ‘as Little as a Pack of Cigarettes’ to Attract Foreign Jihadis With ‘New Girls,’ UN Envoy Warns (christianpost.com)

In continuing to display how little the Islamic State values life and women, ISIS militants are buying and selling sexually enslaved girls and women for as cheap as a pack of cigarettes in hopes of attracting more men to the group, a United Nations envoy declared on Monday.

Zainab Bangura, the United Nations special representative on sexual violence in conflict, told AFP that in order for ISIS to recruit more foreign fighters to join its military ranks, the caliphate continues to capture more girls and women in each new territory it conquers and then sells them at low prices.

“This is how they attract young men — ‘we have women waiting [for] you, virgins that you can marry,'” Bangura said. “The foreign fighters are the backbone of the fighting.”

Bangura, who recently toured through five Middle East countries and interviewed numerous women who were victimized by ISIS but managed to escape, explained that ISIS’ jihad is fueled by the enslavement of women.

“They [ISIS militants] kidnap and abduct women when they take areas so they have — I don’t want to call it a fresh supply, but they have new girls,” Bangura, a native of Sierra Leone, asserted. “This is a war that is being fought on the bodies of women.”

According to April’s estimates, ISIS has approximately 25,000 foreign fighters. But not only does ISIS have “new girls” for foreign fighters to acquire once they reach the caliphate, ISIS’ sex slaves are affordable and priced to meet even the poorest militant’s budget.

Bangura said that captured women and girls are often forced to strip naked and are judged by ISIS militants who gauge how much they are to be sold for. The fighters price some girls as high as a few thousand dollars, while selling others for “as little as a pack of cigarettes,” she stated.

“Some [females] were taken, locked up in a room — over 100 of them in a small house — stripped naked and washed,” Bangura said. “They were then made to stand in front of a group of men who decided ‘what you are worth.'”

After a girl is sold to an ISIS fighter, she is usually beaten, raped against her will and often sold or given away to another militant when the fighter is done abusing her. Should a sex slave refuse to give into her militant’s brutal and abnormal sexual fantasies, she is beaten or sometimes tortured.

In May, Bangura explained that a 20-year-old sex slave was burned alive after she refused to perform an “extreme sex act.”

“We heard one case of a 20-year-old girl who was burned alive because she refused to perform an extreme sex act,” Bangura said. “We learned of many other sadistic sexual acts. We struggled to understand the mentality of people who commit such crimes.”

Bangura also said that ISIS forces some captured women and girls into prostitution.

In a press briefing in early May, Bangura explained that one sex slave, who was sold to 20 different ISIS fighters before she escaped, was forced to undergo virginity repair surgery each time she was sold and raped by the next ISIS fighter.

“ISIL have institutionalized sexual violence and the brutalization of women as a central aspect of their ideology and operations, using it as a tactic of terrorism to advance their strategic objectives,” Bangura said.

Bangura told AFP that ISIS wants to “build a society that reflects the 13th century,” through its systemic sexual abuse of women, which she labeled as a “medieval” practice.

“Sexual violence by ISIL and other extremist groups arises from discrimination and dehumanization based on gender, sexual orientation, ethnic, political or religious identity, in particular the subordination of women and girls,” Bangura wrote in an email to Women eNews. “Indeed, the same ideology and objectives that motivate Boko Haram to abduct women and girls in Nigeria, also spur ISIL to enslave women and girls in Syria and Iraq.”

“Such violence has led to a number of harmful or negative coping mechanisms, such as the early marriage of girls by families that have no other means of protecting them, an increase in polygamy and “survival sex” by those with no economic alternatives, as well as the withdrawal and isolation of women and girls from education and public life,” she added.

Obama Administration Rules of Engagement Stymie Air War against ISIS

Refueling F-22 Raptor in mid-flight in air war against ISIS Source:  US Air Force

Refueling F-22 Raptor in mid-flight in air war against ISIS
Source: US Air Force

NER, by Jerry Gordon, June 1, 2015:

Without boots on the ground providing intelligence feed, the US led coalition air war is failing to “deter, let alone degrade” ISIS.  How else can you explain 7,000 sorties over Syria and Iraq with less than 25% having ‘bomb releases”?   That was the key disturbing finding in a Washington Times (WT) article, U.S. bombers hold fire on Islamic State targets amid ground intel blackout.”

The U.S. conducted 7,319 sorties over Iraq and Syria as part of Operation Inherent Resolve in the first four months of 2015. Of those, only 1,859 flights — 25.4 percent — had at least one “weapons release,” according to data provided by United States Air Force Central Command. That means that only about one in every four flights dropped a bomb on an Islamic State target.

There have been reports of frustration by US Air Force, Navy and Marine pilots engaged in the ISIS air campaign who have acquired targets and yet been commanded to stand down from attacking them. That has led to criticism of the Administration ISIS air war from Members of Congress, most notably, Sen. John McCain who heads the Senate Armed Services Committee cited in the WT report:

The Arizona Republican said at a hearing this year that missions that don’t drop bombs needlessly put American pilots in danger and that U.S. boots on the ground would produce better intelligence that could lead to more effective bombing missions.

The level of air sorties in the US-led coalition air war is far below those of Gulf Wars I and II and even the Balkan Air campaigns during the Clinton era.  The question is what is causing this?  Many believe it is the restrictive rules of engagement to spare civilian lives, when ISIS fighters move among columns of civilians, effectively using them as human shields.  Further, some analysts ironically believe that these strict rules of engagement actually contribute to civilian casualties by to ISIS. Perhaps this also reflects the misguided Obama Administration obsession in both avoiding collateral damage and avoiding putting special teams on the ground to provide better target intelligence.

Israel Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel Source: Times of Israel

Israel Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel
Source: Times of Israel

Perhaps, the Central Command planners and air war commanders might best heed Israeli Air Force Commander Major General Eshel who was cited in a Defense News article saying:

“We have an offensive capability that is unprecedented and extremely significant which we’ve been developing over years and are now able to implement.

“In small wars, it’s a very significant challenge for us to reduce collateral damage on the other side when the enemy is using all he has to elevate the damage we’re forced to inflict on him,” Eshel said.

“First of all, it’s a moral challenge. … It sounds like a slogan, but we are constantly thinking, planning and operating with this challenge in mind.”

The demonstration of that approach was what  occurred in Operation Defensive Edge against the Hamas rocket and terror tunnel war threatening Israel when the IAF F-16’s flew missions in attacks against urban targets with precision guided 1 ton bombs within 250 meters of IDF troops.  The key is precision strikes based on precise intelligence.

Note these debates about the Pentagon handling of the ISIS air war campaign in the WT article:

Former US Navy Helicopter Pilot, Cmdr. Harmer:

Without ground forces, argues Cmdr. Christopher Harmer, a retired Navy helicopter pilot, U.S. airmen are essentially flying half-blind and, as a result, are returning to base with their bombs still in the bay.
“As long as the body politic or president or whoever is making decisions absolutely refuses to put American air controllers on ground, essentially pilots are flying with one eye closed,” Cmdr. Harmer said. “It’s almost impossible for pilots to designate between [Islamic State] fighters and coalition fighters.”

Cmdr. Harmer, who now serves as a senior naval analyst with the Middle East Security Project at the Institute for the Study for War, said airstrikes can hit big, static targets such as bridges, runways and tanks without on-the-ground guidance. But to be effective in hitting moving targets such as enemy troops in a firefight, U.S. pilots need American joint terminal attack controllers to give specific directions from the ground to guide their missiles precisely.

Fewer targets of opportunity says CENTCOM:

Col. Pat Ryder, spokesman for U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), told reporters Friday that while pilots can often place bombs on targets “within minutes,” it’s very important to be very precise and exercise tactical discipline to protect civilian populations.

“We’re dealing with a hybrid adversary who often hides among the population,” he said. “It’s more important for us to accurately target the enemy with a high degree of precision in order to minimize civilian casualties than it is to strike with such speed or force that would risk disenfranchising the very population we’re there to protect.”

Richard Brennan of RAND Corporation has a more pragmatic assessment:

But to make things work without a ground force and employing only air power, the rules of engagement must change, argues Richard Brennan, a senior political scientist at RAND Corp.

Mr. Brennan said the Islamic State, in adapting and responding to U.S. airstrikes, has started to intermingle its fighters with civilians to frustrate U.S. attacks from the air.

In an effort to protect civilian lives, the strict rules of engagement are doing the opposite by giving the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, the opportunity to kill civilians, he said.

“Even though the United States isn’t doing the killing, by its inability to use force in all but the cases where they’re sure of not having collateral damage, we’re ceding the advantage to ISIS in many situations,” Mr. Brennan said.

Looks to us that CENTCOM needs to whistle up a session with IAF General Eshel to understand how the Israelis do precision hits against Hamas in heavily urbanized Gaza City and Hezbollah Syrian missile and weapons transfers.  Both Cmdr. Harmer of the Institute for the Study of War and Brennan of the RAND Corporation are correct about the stringent rules for engagement in the air war against. They are generating more collateral civilian casualties.  Something that didn’t dawn on the Metternichean Munchkins in the Obama National Security Council who call the shots over Pentagon objections.

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Pentagon: Bible and U.S. Founding Documents Promote ‘Sexism’

By Raymond Ibrahim, April 14, 2015:

Here again we see why Western “elites,” including the highest echelons of the U.S. military, are clueless and incapable of acknowledging — much less responding to — Islam:

Modern sexism is rooted in the Bible, U.S. Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, according to a Pentagon-approved seminar.

In a presentation prepared by the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI), a Department of Defense joint services school based in Florida, the Bible, U.S. Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, along with Great Man theory, are to blame for “historical influences that allow sexism to continue,” The Daily Caller reported.

“Quotes from the Bible can be misinterpreted as having a sexist influence when brought out of context and not fully understood,” the course says. “In 1776, ‘We the people…’ only included white men: Slaves and women were not included until later in history.”

The course also cites the Declaration of Independence as a historical cause of sexism for referring to only “all men” being created equal.

[…]

“While there is no DoD Policy that requires persons to take these online courses,” the spokesman told The Daily Caller, 2,075 Department of Defense personnel have taken the “Sexism” course since 2011.

Meanwhile, to even hint that Islam’s core texts promote sexism — if not downright misogny — can get one fired.  Yet the Koran declares that women are inferior to men, that men have authority over them and are permitted to beat them, that polygamy is permissible — each man can have four wives — that females only inherit half of males’ inheritance, that female testimony in an Islamic court of law is equivalent to half a man’s.

And every day, in every Muslim country, every woman experiences these very real, “non-abstract” distinctions.

Islamic prophet Muhammad himself likened females to dogs and other animals — “for all are ridden” —  and said that women are deficient in intelligence and make up the majority of hell’s denizens.

Yet, it’s the Bible, U.S. Constitution, and Declaration of Independence that women need fear, says the Pentagon.

Gregory Hicks: Benghazi and the Smearing of Chris Stevens

345WSJ, By GREGORY N. HICKS:

Last week the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence issued its report on the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attacks in Benghazi, Libya. The report concluded that the attack, which resulted in the murder of four Americans, was “preventable.” Some have been suggesting that the blame for this tragedy lies at least partly with Ambassador Chris Stevens, who was killed in the attack. This is untrue: The blame lies entirely with Washington.

The report states that retired Gen. Carter Ham, then-commander of the U.S. Africa Command (Africom) headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany, twice offered to “sustain” the special forces security team in Tripoli and that Chris twice “declined.” Since Chris cannot speak, I want to explain the reasons and timing for his responses to Gen. Ham. As the deputy chief of mission, I was kept informed by Chris or was present throughout the process.

On Aug. 1, 2012, the day after I arrived in Tripoli, Chris invited me to a video conference with Africom to discuss changing the mission of the U.S. Special Forces from protecting the U.S. Embassy and its personnel to training Libyan forces. This change in mission would result in the transfer of authority over the unit in Tripoli from Chris to Gen. Ham. In other words, the special forces would report to the Defense Department, not State.

Chris wanted the decision postponed but could not say so directly. Chris had requested on July 9 by cable that Washington provide a minimum of 13 American security professionals for Libya over and above the diplomatic security complement of eight assigned to Tripoli and Benghazi. On July 11, the Defense Department, apparently in response to Chris’s request, offered to extend the special forces mission to protect the U.S. Embassy.

However, on July 13, State Department Undersecretary Patrick Kennedy refused the Defense Department offer and thus Chris’s July 9 request. His rationale was that Libyan guards would be hired to take over this responsibility. Because of Mr. Kennedy’s refusal, Chris had to use diplomatic language at the video conference, such as expressing “reservations” about the transfer of authority.

Chris’s concern was significant. Transferring authority would immediately strip the special forces team of its diplomatic immunity. Moreover, the U.S. had no status of forces agreement with Libya. He explained to Rear Adm. Charles J. Leidig that if a member of the special forces team used weapons to protect U.S. facilities, personnel or themselves, he would be subject to Libyan law. The law would be administered by judges appointed to the bench by Moammar Gadhafi or, worse, tribal judges.

Chris described an incident in Pakistan in 2011 when an American security contractor killed Pakistani citizens in self-defense, precipitating a crisis in U.S.-Pakistani relations. He also pointed out that four International Criminal Court staff, who had traveled to Libya in June 2012 to interview Gadhafi’s oldest son, Saif al-Islam al-Qadhafi, were illegally detained by tribal authorities under suspicion of spying. This was another risk U.S. military personnel might face.

During that video conference, Chris stressed that the only way to mitigate the risk was to ensure that U.S. military personnel serving in Libya would have diplomatic immunity, which should be done prior to any change of authority.

Chris understood the importance of the special forces team to the security of our embassy personnel. He believed that by explaining his concerns, the Defense Department would postpone the decision so he could have time to work with the Libyan government and get diplomatic immunity for the special forces.

According to the National Defense Authorization Act, the Defense Department needed Chris’s concurrence to change the special forces mission. But soon after the Aug. 1 meeting, and as a complete surprise to us at the embassy, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta signed the order without Chris’s concurrence.

The SenateIntelligence Committee’s report accurately notes that on Aug. 6, after the transfer of authority, two special forces team members in a diplomatic vehicle were forced off the road in Tripoli and attacked. Only because of their courage, skills and training did they escape unharmed. But the incident highlighted the risks associated with having military personnel in Libya unprotected by diplomatic immunity or a status of forces agreement. As a result of this incident, Chris was forced to agree with Gen. Ham’s withdrawal of most of the special forces team from Tripoli until the Libyan government formally approved their new training mission and granted them diplomatic immunity.

Because Mr. Kennedy had refused to extend the special forces security mission, State Department protocol required Chris to decline Gen. Ham’s two offers to do so, which were made after Aug. 6. I have found the reporting of these so-called offers strange, since my recollection of events is that after the Aug. 6 incident, Gen. Ham wanted to withdraw the entire special forces team from Tripoli until they had Libyan government approval of their new mission and the diplomatic immunity necessary to perform their mission safely. However, Chris convinced Gen. Ham to leave six members of the team in Tripoli.

When I arrived in Tripoli on July 31, we had over 30 security personnel, from the State Department and the U.S. military, assigned to protect the diplomatic mission to Libya. All were under the ambassador’s authority. On Sept. 11, we had only nine diplomatic security agents under Chris’s authority to protect our diplomatic personnel in Tripoli and Benghazi.

I was interviewed by the Select Committee and its staff, who were professional and thorough. I explained this sequence of events. For some reason, my explanation did not make it into the Senate report.

To sum up: Chris Stevens was not responsible for the reduction in security personnel. His requests for additional security were denied or ignored. Officials at the State and Defense Departments in Washington made the decisions that resulted in reduced security. Sen. Lindsey Graham stated on the Senate floor last week that Chris “was in Benghazi because that is where he was supposed to be doing what America wanted him to do: Try to hold Libya together.” He added, “Quit blaming the dead guy.”

Mr. Hicks served as Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli from July 31 to Dec. 7, 2012.

Sharia’s Protector

569By Mark Steyn:

Rohullah Qarizada is one of those Afghans you used to see a lot on American TV in the immediate aftermath of the Taliban’s fall. Trimly bearded, dapper in Western suit and tie, he heads the Afghan Independent Bar Association in Kabul. Did you know Kabul had a bar association? A few years back, I ran into one of the U.S. prosecutors who helped set it up, with a grant from the Swedish foreign ministry. Mr. Qarizada currently sits on a committee charged with making revisions to the Afghan legal code. What kind of revisions? Well, for example: “Men and women who commit adultery shall be punished based on the circumstances by one of the following punishments: lashing, stoning.”

As in stoning to death. That’s the proposed improvement to Article 21. Article 23 specifies that said punishment shall be performed in public. Mr. Qarizada gave an interview to Reuters, explaining that the reintroduction of stoning was really no big deal: You’d have to have witnesses, and they’d better be consistent. “The judge asks each witness many questions,” he said, “and if one answer differs from other witnesses then the court will reject the claim.” So that’s all right then.

Stoning is making something of a comeback in the world’s legal codes — in October the Sultan of Brunei announced plans to put it on his books. Nevertheless, Kabul has the unique distinction of proposing to introduce the practice on America’s watch. Afghanistan is an American protectorate; its kleptocrat president is an American client, kept alive these last twelve years only by American arms. The Afghan campaign is this nation’s longest war — and our longest un-won war: That’s to say, nowadays we can’t even lose in under a decade. I used to say that, 24 hours after the last Western soldier leaves Afghanistan, it will be as if we were never there. But it’s already as if we were never there: The last Christian church in the country was razed to the ground in 2010.

At this point, Americans sigh wearily and shrug, “Afghanistan, the graveyard of empire,” or sneer, “If they want to live in a seventh-century s***hole, f*** ’em.” But neither assertion is true. Do five minutes’ googling, and you’ll find images from the Sixties and early Seventies of women in skirts above the knee listening to the latest Beatles releases in Kabul record stores. True, a stone’s throw (so to speak) from the capital, King Zahir’s relatively benign reign was not always in evidence. But, even so, if it’s too much to undo the barbarism of centuries, why could the supposed superpower not even return the country to the fitful civilization of the disco era? The American imperium has lasted over twice as long as the Taliban’s rule — and yet, unlike them, we left no trace.

Seven years ago, in my book America Alone, I quoted a riposte to the natives by a British administrator, and it proved such a hit with readers that for the next couple of years at live stage appearances, from Vancouver to Vienna, Madrid to Melbourne, I would be asked to reprise it — like the imperialist version of a Beatles cover band. The chap in question was Sir Charles Napier, out in India and faced with the practice of suttee — the Hindu tradition of burning widows on the funeral pyres of their husbands. General Napier’s response was impeccably multicultural: “You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: When men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours.”

Read more at Steyn Online

 

U.S. Appeals Court Allows Citizens to Sue Saudi Arabia for 9/11

twin towers impactClarion Project:

In a  landmark decision, a federal court overturned a previous court decision that had banned  private citizens from suing Saudi Arabia directly for damages incurred during the 9/11 terrorist attack.

A previous federal court ruling had denied any lawsuits against the kingdom in a 2002 ruling that said the kingdom had sovereign immunity.

The new ruling, made by a three-judge panel from the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, overturned that ruling saying that lawsuits against Saudi Arabia were in the “interest of justice” due to the fact that much of the funding for the hijackers (the majority of whom were from Saudi Arabia) came from the Saudi Arabia.

The new ruling means that families who lost loved ones in the September 11, 2001 attack on New York’s World Trade Center and the Pentagon, as well as those who insured businesses that were destroyed in the attack, will be able to sue Saudi Arabia directly for monetary damages.

“I’m ecstatic…. For 12 years we’ve been fighting to expose the people who financed those [killers],” said William Doyle. Doyle’s son, Joseph Doyle was just 25 when he was killed in the North Tower of the World Trade Center while working for Cantor-Fitzgerald.

The original lawsuit, filed ten years ago by Cozen O’Conner (a firm out of Philadelphia) accused members of the Saudi government as well as the royal family of serving on charities that bankrolled Al Qaeda operations. The suit alleges that these government officials and royals knew the money from these “charities” would be used for terrorism.

“We conclude that the circumstances of this case are extraordinary,” the judges said in the new ruling. The judges further concluded that the lower court judge who made the original ruling “rested on an error of law” when he originally disallowed law suits against the kingdom.

The lawyer for the plaintiffs, Jerry S. Goldman, commented, “This is a big step forward in the process of obtaining fair justice for the victims of this tragedy.” Goldman added that the decision was “soundly grounded and restores this case to the proper procedural posture.”

 

 

Lessons of Iraq and A-Stan: Infidel Armies Can’t Win Islamic Hearts and Minds

Karzai and Rohani in Tehran, December 8, 2013

Karzai and Rohani in Tehran, December 8, 2013

by Diana West:

I am reposting a couple of columns below from 2009, written at a time before the Obama “surge” in Afghanistan, based on Bush’s “surge” in Iraq, was in full swing.

I have long argued that the Bush surge failed (explanation in three parts here). TheObama surge has failed, too, and for the same basic reason that has nothing to do with leaving Iraq “too soon,” or, I deeply hope, “leaving Afghanistan” in 2014. It is vital to stress that these failures are not due to the bravery and sacrifice and skill of our military forces. These forces have resolutely fufilled their impossible missions, to say the very least. The failures lie in war-planning and political strategy, ignorance and fecklessness, at the highest levels of the Bush and Obama White Houses, in the Pentagon, and in the Congress that failed to check them.

(To such ignorance and fecklessness we may also add an epic show of institutional callousness.)

The simple fact is that an army from Judeo-Christian lands cannot fight for the soul of an Islamic land.

This is the obvious but untaught and thus unlearned lesson of these past twelve years of tragic, costly wars. They call us “infidel.” We think that doesn’t matter. The Koran is their guide and they build their constitutions upon its laws. We help them do so and order our soldiers to risk their lives upholding theses sharia-supreme documents in the fantasy-name of  “universal” rights that exist nowhere but in the West. (See the madness begin here back in 2004). Meanwhile, sharia norms and masked Marxism are eroding liberty in the West while 99 percent of our political leaders do nothing.

They learn nothing, too. They set post-9/11 strategy in Iraq without seeing sharia norms and jihad doctrine as obstacles to “nation-building” on a (flawed) Western model — as though sharia and jihad can be eliminated as the authoritative foundations of Islamic culture by wish or denial. Such a  see-no-Islam strategy was doomed to fail, and so it did. But instead of retooling this failed strategy (which served mainly to the benefit of Iran, China and other enemies), they turned around and implemented it in Afghanistan.

We must win the people’s “hearts and minds,” Gen. Petraeus urged his men back in Iraq.

We must win the Afghans’ “trust,” Adm. Mullen and others   stressed (or buy it).

Thus, our soldiers were ordered to take hills of the Islamic mind-world that infidel armies can never attain.

We must respect their culture, the generals insisted, seeking more and more common ground, but ceding ground (metaphorical and real) instead. Vital ground.

We must protect the Afghan people (at the expense of our own), ordered the COIN corps generals, led by Petraeus, who infamously ordered:

“Walk. Stop by, don’t drive by. Patrol on foot whenever possible and engage the population. Take off your [ballistic] sunglasses. Situational awareness can be gained only by interacting face to face, not separated by ballistic glass or Oakleys.

Such “situational awareness” came at a great and tragic cost — but with little if any lasting benefit. Neither “protecting the population,” nor restricting ROEs, nor insanely profligate public works projects have permitted the infidel counterinsurgency to achieve its goals — winning Islamic hearts, minds or trust.

Cultural prostration hasn’t worked either, but not for want of trying.

We must respect their culture (no matter how barbaric). We must uphold their culture (no matter how vile). We must protect Islam, too. We must submit to its laws, and punish Americans who don’t. And punish Americans.

“Handle the Koran as if it were a fragile piece of delicate art,” a memo to Joint Task Force Guantanamo ordered in January 2003. That wasn’t enough. “We will hold sacred the beliefs held sacred by others,” ISAF declared in 2012.

Soon we will have new and enduring allies in the war on “terror.” What difference will it make if we can only fight together for the other side?

From April and August 2009 — over one thousand combat dead and thousands of combat wounded ago.

From April 3, 2009:

“What Do You Mean: If We Ever Want to Leave Afghanistan?”

From August 14, 2009:

“All Those Boots on the Ground and No Imprint.”

SHUTTING DOWN NATIONAL SECURITY

obama-soldiers-afpby FRANK GAFFNEY:

On October 15th, our military personnel will receive their paychecks as usual, thanks to a last-minute act of Congress passed in spite of the government shutdown affecting much of the rest of the government.

But our servicemen and women are being paid to work in a military that is rapidly being hollowed out to the point where it may be incapable of winning the nation’s wars. The federal government will not be shut down for long. The same can’t be said of those we expect to keep us safe and free.

In fact, the “fundamental” transformation promised by candidate Barack Obama in 2008 is arguably manifesting itself most dramatically in the systematic dismantling of our military capabilities. It has lately become so severe that, on September 18th, the nation’s senior officers testified to Congress that the armed services are at risk of being unable to meet even this administration’s sharply scaled-back requirements.

Recall that the President had justified the first nearly half a trillion dollars he cut from the defense budget by claiming that we no longer needed to be able to fight two wars nearly simultaneously. But at least they were supposed to be able to win one.

But now, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, if the sequestration process is permitted to continue to reduce Pentagon budgets over the next ten years by another half a trillion dollars, the uniformed leaders of three of the four services say they will not be able to execute even a one-war mission. And the Marine Commandant says his would have difficulty in doing so.

These dire predictions are the predictable – and predicted – results of both the sheer magnitude of the cuts themselves, compounded by the inherent, across-the-board nature of the sequestration mechanism. Insult is added to injury by the fact that the Pentagon has to bear a wildly disproportionate percentage of government-wide sequestration reductions: fifty percent of the total, even though defense represents just twenty percent of federal expenditures.

At present, every aspect of the military budget except for compensation for military personnel – including, in particular, training, operations and maintenance, procurement and research and development – is being ravaged.

What is more, regardless of the outcome of the fights over Obamacare this week, and raising the debt ceiling later this month, the structural damage resulting from the defense budget cuts to the nation’s industrial base is becoming increasingly irreparable.

The production line for the Free World’s only large military air transport aircraft, the C-17, is the latest to be threatened with termination. As with the supply chains associated with other critical weapon systems and components – from fighter aircraft to combatant warships to armored vehicles – we are seeing disruptions and, in some cases, the outright elimination of the required manufacturing capacity, especially among second- and third-tier subcontractors. Over time, such short-sighted behavior will tremendously compound the impact of the other reductions in the military’s resources and make any comeback that much more problematic.

Read more at Breitbart

 

Princeton Professor Embraces 9/11 Conspiracy Movement at Million Muslim March Event

IPT News
September 12, 2013

 

Fort Hood Trial: Don’t Say the “T” Word

fort_hood_trial-450x337By Deborah Weiss:

(excerpt)

An independent commission conducted an investigation of the Fort Hood shootings. DoD released its report in January 2010.  It found that the Pentagon was unprepared to defend itself against internal threats.  DoD and other government agencies have characterized the massacre as “workplace violence” and omitted any mention of Islamist ideology or terrorist behavior.

The leaders of the investigation stated that their concern was “actions and effects, not necessarily motives”.  And, Army Chief of Staff General George W. Casey proclaimed that “as horrific as this tragedy was, if our diversity becomes a casualty, I think that’s worse.”

The FBI determined that because Hasan had no co-conspirators, further investigation was unnecessary.

In his public address and at the eulogy, President Obama also refused to acknowledge the role of Islamic terrorism in the massacre.

Yet motive is what distinguishes one type of homicide from another.  A homicide victim is equally dead regardless of motive.  But our legal system and moral code mandate that intent be taken into account when determining what, if any punishment should be accorded.

The omission of the terrorist motives in the Fort Hood massacre is resulting in the denial of purple hearts for the fallen soldiers, and a denial of medical benefits and financial compensation for the survivors.

Though the UCMJ does not have terrorism in its code as a possible charge, the military court could have waived jurisdiction, allowing Hasan to be prosecuted in Federal Court where a charge of domestic terrorism would have been in order.

Even if Hasan was not criminally charged with terrorism, the government could make a political determination that this was a terrorist act, allowing the victims to be properly compensated.  DoD officials claimed that Hasan could have argued he couldn’t get a fair trial due to accusations of criminal liability.

However, Hasan has already admitted criminal guilt.  Therefore, it is more likely that the government’s characterization of the massacre as workplace violence was made in line with its pattern of denial regarding Islamist ideology.

This Administration has rewritten all national security training material to delete all reference to Islamic terrorism and has launched an aggressive campaign of interfaith dialogue and  “peer pressure and shaming” to stifle all debate on the issue of Islamism.

The Administration has also formed close alliances with Islamist organizations in a quest to silence all speech critical of Islam, in a manner tantamount to blasphemy codes.

Free speech constitutes a human right and is critical to maintaining the cause of freedom.  It is especially important to allow open debate on the nature of national security threats and their motivational ideology.

Denying the threat of Islamic radicalism has consequences.  Resulting policies hamper America’s ability to defeat those that wish us harm.  Whether the Benghazi attacks, the Fort Hood massacre or other Islamic terrorist attacks, most Americans realize that purging the language does not eradicate threats.

This awareness does not apply to the Administration, however, where the folly continues.

Read it all at Front Page

This article was commissioned by The Legal Project, an activity of the Middle East Forum.

Deborah Weiss, Esq. is a regular contributor to FrontPage Magazine and the Washington Times.  She is a contributing author of “Saudi Arabia and the Global Islamic Terrorist Network” (Palgrave MacMillan, 2011).  A partial listing of her work can be found at www.vigilancenow.org.

 

 

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Obama’s Al Qaeda Jailbreaks Help Lead to Al Qaeda Resurgence

download-241-540x346-450x288Front Page, By Daniel Greenfield:

At the New York Post, Paul Sperry makes the very important point that Al Qaeda’s jailbreaks are an inside job, both in Muslim countries and in Gitmo.

Al Qaeda is on the path to defeat,” Obama said last fall, “and Osama bin Laden is dead.” Obama also said the upper ranks of al Qaeda have been “decimated.”

But how many have escaped or been released from custody? Answer: far too many. And now our enemy is making a comeback.

US embassies are closed today across the Middle East, and travel alerts have been issued, because of threats from a resurgent al Qaeda.

That’s because, across the Muslim world, al Qaeda and even our own allies are springing terrorists from jail at an alarming rate. As they regain their freedom, they’re rejoining the jihad, forcing us to refight them another day.

AFGHANISTAN: All told, the US so far has transferred about 4,000 terrorist detainees to the Afghans, who in turn have freed at least 1,376 of them — including many former Gitmo alumni. In fact, most of the 46 Taliban prisoners repatriated from Gitmo already have been released. And as many US commanders warned, several have returned to the battlefield as high-level Taliban commanders leading attacks on US troops. They include Abdullah Ghulam Rasoul, Maulavi Said Khail, Maulavi Shaheer and Maulavi Raouf.

Despite the high recidivism rate, the administration plans by 2014 to turn over all its prisoners to the Afghan government — including high-value al Qaeda foreigners from Pakistan, Yemen and Saudi Arabia; and possibly even the 22 known suspects in insider attacks on our troops who have been captured. Since 2007, Afghan soldiers and police have launched at least 70 attacks on American troops, killing 92 and wounding another 134, according to an unclassified Pentagon report released last week.

The Obama administration is even sponsoring a de facto amnesty program for Taliban and al Qaeda fighters.

Through what is known locally as the Afghan Peace and Reintegration Program, the Pentagon is actually paying insurgent fighters to walk off the battlefield. All they have to do is sign an “intent to reintegrate” form vowing to “cease violence (and) live within the laws of Afghanistan;” and in exchange, they’ll receive monthly payments and even get to keep their weapons if they request them for “personal protection.” Local tribal leaders and clerics do the security vetting and vouch for their reintegration as part of a High Peace Council.

Since its 2010 launch, the program has enrolled 6,277 insurgents at a cost to US taxpayers of $72 million. Total five-year funding for the reintegration program is $175 million. The Pentagon has provided no data on the number of enrollees who have returned to the battlefield.

SAUDI ARABIA: A similar reintegration program we’ve entrusted the Saudis to run for Saudi terrorists released from Gitmo has been a disaster. By one account, the recidivism rate for its “jihad rehab” exceeds 40%. According to the Saudis themselves, some 25 of the 120 ex-Gitmo detainees repatriated to the kingdom have rejoined the jihad for a recidivism rate of 21%.

At least a dozen of these Saudi recidivists have reunited with al Qaeda in Yemen, taking high-ranking positions in al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, which has launched attacks on the American homeland.

EGYPT: After now-deposed Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi took the reins of power in Cairo last year, with the backing of the Obama administration, he pardoned 572 suspected terrorists and militants, including 25 leaders of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad and Jama’a al-Islamiya. He even released a handful of terrorists the CIA had interrogated after 9/11 for ties to the plot.

Another prisoner Morsi freed in 2012 was none other than Mohammad Zawahiri, brother of current al-Qaida chief Ayman al-Zawahiri, who founded Islamic Jihad.

GITMO: Our own commander in chief is planning perhaps the biggest break for al Qaeda. Obama wants to shut down Gitmo and repatriate all but the 9/11 planners.

Already, nearly 30% of the 600 detainees transferred or released from Gitmo have re-engaged in terrorist activities, according to a recent Pentagon report. Emptying the prison is just asking for more trouble.

Clearly more trouble is what Obama wants.

Hostage Crisis: The Blind Sheikh, Benghazi and Smoking Guns

images (64)By Walid Shoebat, Ben Barrack and Keith Davies:

A Libyan intelligence document has been produced that directly implicates Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood president Mohammed Mursi in the attacks on American installations in Benghazi on 9/11/12. Those who attempt to discredit this document run into trouble when it is coupled with real-time video we uncovered on 9/13/12. In that video, gunmen at the scene of the attack can be heard declaring that they were sent by Mursi.

After weeks of attempting to push the narrative that a video was responsible, the Obama administration ultimately had to concede that the attacks in Benghazi were terrorist in nature. A few months after 9/11/12, the top lawyer for the Pentagon stated that the war on terror should be wagedby “law enforcement and intelligence agencies”.

Based on the Obama administration’s standard, the Benghazi attacks should be treated as a crimeinstead of as an act of war. Therefore, let us bring forth the evidence, which implicates the leader of a nation state (Egypt) in the attack and warrants a grand jury (House of Representatives) investigation to decide if administration officials should be indicted (impeached).

Since we’re deciding who to indict, we must look at evidence of involvement in the attack. Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood President – Mohammed Mursi – is a good place to start. Our first two exhibits are both damning but when taken together, may just constitute a ‘smoking gun’. EXHIBIT A is a video shot from a cell phone at the scene of the attacks. In this video, gunmen are seen running toward the camera, toward other gunmen. At one point – in Arabic which we have confirmed – one approaching gunman says, “Don’t Shoot us! We were sent by Mursi!”. Even though the video is in Arabic, you can discern the word “Mursi”.

Read more at Shoebat.com

Benghazi, Agency Scandals and Syria: The Most Perverted Shell Game Yet

20130617_SHELL_GAME_SCANDAL_LARGEby JOHN BERNARD:

The stories of government agency corruption and the blurring of Constitutional guidelines have certainly caused a storm of consternation and outright anger in the past many weeks. It seems each day has provided us with yet one more glimpse into the seedy world of a government that has clearly lost its way, and shed even the appearance of concern for maintaining the public trust.

While the debacle in Benghazi had dominated the national media stage for a few months, it was quickly shifted to the back burner to make room for far more salacious tales starring State Department appointees and prostitution as well as a litany of stories detailing every manner of corrupt behavior.

Learning that the IRS abused its power and deliberately targeted groups with a very specific political leaning was just one more.  Certainly the American public has a right to be concerned when the single most powerful agency in government shamelessly exerts its influence and authority against the very Americans it collects money from in order to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States”.

It was as disconcerting to learn that the Department of Justice was gleaning Associated Press documents for who knows what purpose, as it was ironic that the media which has acted as a pro-bono ad agency for this Administration and its agencies should take issue with this particular infringement on our Constitutional “Rights”.

The NSA digital surveillance program really isn’t news except to those who haven’t been concerned about it since the last time it was discussed some 6 or 7 years ago. The fact is, that program really hasn’t changed, it just happened to come to light again but this time in the midst of a list of other abuses of authority and power, levied during this seemingly Teflon coated administration’s second term.

There is no doubt that all of these things give reason for concern. It does however remain to be seen which, if any, of these things will be deemed to be truly illegal or unconstitutional if not arrogantly applied.

The real problem is, these things, while troubling have served a much darker purpose and it appears that purpose is now all but accomplished; Weapons to the Syrian Rebels.

It seems just a little too convenient that all of these “scandals” should appear on the scene right in the middle of Congressional hearings to determine exactly what happened in Benghazi. And being as Congress has yet to learn how to multi-task, they have been oh so easily side-tracked from that most important investigation to these sideshows. What this has managed to do is take the spotlight from Benghazi and away from any suggestion of Administration guilt in order to focus on what may be determined to be not much more than poor judgment in some cases and horrible supervision in others.

Since September 11, 2012, Benghazi has been a mine filled with potential evidence of wrong-headed vision, Administration malfeasance, upper echelon military incompetence, Pentagon and Administration collusion, Administration protectionism and a list of bald face lies.

Read more: Family Security Matters

 

Benghazi Investigation Still Very Much Ongoing

5829917074_8c9c57e0e8_zHeritage Foundation, May 29, 2013

By :

Benghazi is back in the headlines with a vengeance as investigations continue on several congressional fronts:

  • Representative Darrell Issa (R–CA) subpoenaed the State Department to deliver more email threads on the Benghazi talking points;
  • The House Government Reform and Oversight Committee threatened to subpoenaAmbassador Thomas Pickering regarding the Accountability Review Board’s inadequate investigation; and
  • The House Armed Services Committee is probing the absent military response on the night of September 11, 2012.

While many aspects of the Benghazi scandal are troubling, the lack of information on the military front is particularly serious. Getting information out of the Pentagon has been like pulling teeth. The Senate Armed Services Committee hearing in February revealed that former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Martin Dempsey had briefed President Obama at 5:00 p.m. on the day of the Benghazi terrorist attack, and unbelievably had had no communication after that.

Dempsey then informed the committee that there were no assets available that could have reached Benghazi in time to assist the American diplomats and CIA personnel under attack there — a statement that was contradicted directly by Gregory Hicks, second in command at the U.S. embassy in Libya, in highly emotional testimony. As Hicks revealed, a military support team was ready to take off from Tripoli to Benghazi on the night of the attack, but was told to stand down. By whom we don’t yet know.

Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee Buck McKeon (R–CA), has been vigilant in seeking answers and has told Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel that he is “deeply concerned” about the lack of answers, reported The Washington Examiner’s Byron York. Last week, McKeon’s committee received a briefing from Pentagon officials, the content of which unfortunately remains largely classified, as does far too much of the information relating to Benghazi. Among McKeon’s questions are:

What aircraft the U.S. had in the region that might have come to the Americans’ aid; where those planes were; whether they were armed or could have been armed; whether they would have needed refueling; the presence of un-manned aircraft, armed and unarmed; the status of various U.S. emergency response teams; and the decisions commanders at all levels made in deciding to deploy or not deploy those assets.

The congressional committees involved in the investigation are doing yeoman’s work. Their stubborn persistence will eventually unearth the truth about Benghazi. The future safety of U.S. diplomatic and military personnel serving overseas depends on it.

Muslim beheads two Coptic Christians in Koranic ritual – in New Jersey!

Yusuf Ibrahim

Yusuf Ibrahim

BY :

Here we have another “silent” story about Islamic violence in our country with nary a word from the mainstream media about it. The country goes gaga over a beautiful model’s murder at the hands of an international legless sports hero, but the beheading of two Egyptian Coptic Christian men in New Jersey by a Muslim gets a pass. Why?

Simple. The gruesome beheading invokes the Muslim ritual, called for in the Koran. Koranic verse 8:12 reads: “I will instill terror into the hearts of unbelievers: smite ye above their necks and smite all their fingers off.”

Our media shuts its eyes, turns its head and stuffs its ears when anything negative about the primitive actions of Muslim occur.

Maj. Nidal Hasan, who brutally slaughtered 13 of his fellow troops at Fort Hood, Texas, and wounded 22 others, was said to have shouted, “Allahu Akhbar”  during his shooting spree. He was just following Koranic orders to kill infidels. By the way, “Allahu Akhbar” is Arabic for “God is great.” The Pentagon’s “thorough” investigation into Hasan’s murderous assault never mentioned Islam, the Koran or the major’s religion in its final report. It was considered a workplace act of violence.

We are giving Islamic radicals a free pass to ritually murder those considered infidels, or non-believers in “the religion of peace,” and Muslims considered violators of Islam. May God help us!