Parents of American Islamic State Sex Slave Kayla Mueller: Obama Failed Our Daughter

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Breitbart, by Edwin Mora, Aug. 26, 2016:

The parents of American hostage Kayla Mueller have shared with the public the 10 second “proof of life” video they received from her captors, the savage Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), in which their daughter proclaims, “It’s very terrifying here.”

Mueller’s parents — Carl and Marsha Mueller — believe the Obama administration failed their daughter.

“The president could have been a hero, but he chose not to,” Mr. Muller told ABC News.

Mr. and Mrs. Muller have provided a copy of the “proof of life” video to the news outlet.

“My name is Kayla Mueller. I need your help,” pleaded Mueller, the 25-year-old humanitarian aid worker who was kidnapped in Syria on August 4, 2013, before ISIS had gained international notoriety.

“I’ve been here too long and I’ve been very sick,” she continued. “It’s very terrifying here.”

Mueller’s parents also received a “proof of life” audio clip from ISIS on May 29, 2014, nearly a year after she was abducted.

“Goodbye,” she abruptly said at the end. That was Mueller’s last spoken word to her parents.

In in the audio, Muller said:

Mom and Dad, I still am remaining healthy. You should have already received the three answers to the proof life questions you provided. Those detaining me are demanding an exchange of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui’s release for my release. If this is not achievable, they are demanding 5 million euros to ensure my release.

ABC News has learned from one of the hostages who was enslaved alongside Mueller that she bravely defended her Christian faith.

The news outlet notes:

American hostage Kayla Mueller was tortured, verbally abused, forced into slave labor for ISIS commanders in Syria and raped by the group’s top leader [Abu Bakr al Baghdadi], but her fellow hostages say she never surrendered hope, she selflessly put the welfare of fellow captives above her own and she even stood up to executioner ‘Jihadi John’ to defend her Christian faith.

A 13-year-old Yazidi girl who was also held hostage alongside Mueller has been identified by ABC News as Mueller’s closest friend while in captivity. Thousands of Yazidi girls have been forced into sex slavery by ISIS. She has asked ABC News to identify her only as “Julia.”

“She [Mueller] told the [fellow hostage] girls that part of surviving was being forced to pretend she had converted to Islam so the ISIS leader could sexually assault her, though she still clung secretly to her Christian faith,” recounted Julia.

Mueller “was praying for us to escape, to survive,” added the Yazidi girl. “I will never forget this sacrifice. She was very good to us. I will never forget.”

The ISIS terrorists charged with overseeing Mueller were led by British terrorist Mohammed Emwazi, who became known as “Jihadi John” when he carried out the beheadings and killings of 10 hostages. He was killed by a CIA armed drone in Syria last year.

Former hostage Daniel Rye Ottosen, a Danish freelance photographer, recalled how Mueller stood up to Jihadi John to defend her Christian faith. ISIS has committed genocide against Christians in the Middle East, crucifying, torturing, and enslaving thousands of Christians.

President Barack Obama has reportedly broken a promise to make a contribution to a charity foundation Mueller’s parents established in Kayla’s.

“I’m still waiting for that donation, Mr. President,” Carl Mueller told ABC  News.

In February 2015, ISIS claimed that American hostage Mueller was killed in Syria by a Jordanian airstrike.

Although the White House has denied that an airstrike killed her, it confirmed Muller’s death a few days after the ISIS claim without revealing the cause.

Mr. and Mrs. Mueller have indicated that “a series of missteps” by the Obama administration “failed their daughter,” reports ABC News.

“The Muellers say White House officials threatened them with criminal prosecution if they tried to pay the $6.2 million ransom ISIS had demanded for the release of their daughter,” points of the news outlet.

With January Looming, Obama ‘Determined’ to Close Guantanamo Before Leaving

A sailor assigned to the Navy Expeditionary Guard Battalion at Joint Task Force Guantanamo Bay stands watch over a cell block in the detention facility’s Camp 6 while detainees look through magazines and books on March 30, 2010. (U.S. Navy photo by Joshua Nistas)

A sailor assigned to the Navy Expeditionary Guard Battalion at Joint Task Force Guantanamo Bay stands watch over a cell block in the detention facility’s Camp 6 while detainees look through magazines and books on March 30, 2010. (U.S. Navy photo by Joshua Nistas)

PJ MEDIA, BY BRIDGET JOHNSON, AUGUST 25, 2016:

WASHINGTON — There are fewer than five months remaining in President Obama’s term, and 61 detainees — and Congress — stand between the president and his goal of closing the prison facility at Guantanamo Bay.

Only 20 of the remaining prisoners have been cleared for transfer to a suitable country.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Wednesday that “we still have to go and do some diplomatic work with other countries to determine who’s willing to assume responsibility for these individuals and who’s also willing to assist with the implementation of whatever restrictions may be necessary against them after they’re transferred.”

Today, Earnest was asked how Obama could still be confident that Gitmo will be closed by the time he leaves office.

“What we will continue to do is to work to overcome the obstacles that Congress has erected to prevent the closure of the prison at Guantanamo Bay,” Earnest replied. “And that’s unfortunate, particularly when you consider that Democrats and Republicans, national security professionals in both parties, agree with the conclusion that President Obama has reached, which is that the American people are best served by closing the prison at Guantanamo Bay.”

“…So, you know, we’re going to do our best to try to get this closed. And it’s our expectation that that’s what we’ll do.”

However, Earnest added that he couldn’t “lay out for you exactly the path for how that’s going to take place right now.”

“But the president has made clear that this is a priority. And he did that in the earliest days of his presidency, and it remains a priority here at — in the last several months of his presidency.”

Vice President Joe Biden told reporters in Sweden today that it is his “hope and expectation” that Obama shuts Guantanamo.

House Foreign Affairs Committee Republicans quickly fired off a press release noting that “Obama wants to bring these terrorists to the U.S., but the American people and bipartisan majorities in Congress have rejected this plan again and again.”

“Given that half of the remaining detainees are too dangerous to release and that it would be illegal to transfer them to the U.S., how does Vice President Biden expect the president to close Gitmo without violating the law?”

Read more

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What’s the Plan for Winning the War?

iranian-nuclear-weaponDoes anyone in the administration recognize that we’re in one?

CounterJihad, Aug. 25, 2016:

Michael Ledeen makes a clever observation:

Everyone’s talking about “ransom,” but it’s virtually impossible to find anyone who’s trying to figure out how to win the world war we’re facing.  The two keystones of the enemy alliance are Iran and Russia, and the Obama administration, as always, has no will to resist their sorties, whether the Russians’ menacing moves against Ukraine, or the Iranians’ moves against us.

The moves are on the chessboard, sometimes kinetic and sometimes psychological warfare.  Like a chess game, we are in the early stages in which maneuver establishes the array of forces that will govern the rest of the game.  Russia’s deployment of air and naval forces to Syria stole a march on the Obama administration.  Its swaying of Turkey, which last year was downing Russian aircraft, is stealing another.  Its deployment of bombers and advanced strike aircraft to Iran is another.  That last appears to be in a state of renegotiation, as Ledeen notes, but that too is probably for show.  The Iranians have too much to gain in terms of security for their nuclear program, at least until they’ve had time to build their own air force.

Iran is making strategic moves as well.  Ledeen notes the “Shi’ite Freedom Army,” a kind of Iranian Foreign Legion that intends to field five divisions of between twenty and twenty-five thousand men each.  Overall command will belong to Quds Force commander Qassem Suliemani, currently a major figure in the assault on Mosul, having recovered from his injury in Syria commanding Iranian-backed militia in the war there.  The fact of his freedom of movement is itself a Russian-Iranian demonstration that they will not be governed by international law:  Suliemani is under international travel bans for his assassination plot against world diplomats, but was received in Moscow and now travels freely throughout the northern Middle East.

Turkey, meanwhile, has been effectively cut off by Iran’s and Russia’s success in the opening game of this global chess match.  As late as the Ottoman Empire, the Turks looked south through Iran and Iraq to power bases as far away as Arabia.  Now the Ayatollahs are going to control a crescent of territory from Afghanistan’s borders to the Levant, leaving the Turks locked out.  One might have expected the Turks to respond by doubling their sense of connection to Europe and NATO.  Instead, the purge following the alleged coup attempt is cementing an Islamist control that leaves the Turks looking toward a world from which they are largely separated by the power of this new Russian-Iranian alliance.  The Turks seem to be drifting toward joining that alliance because being a part of that alliance will preserve their ties to the Islamic world.

For now, the Obama administration seems blind to the fact that these moves are closing off America’s position in the Middle East.  This is not a new policy.  Eli Lake reports that the Obama administration told the CIA to sever its ties to Iranian opposition groups in order to avoid giving aid to the Green revolution.  Their negotiation of last year’s disastrous “Iran deal” has led to Iran testing new ballistic missiles and receiving major arms shipments from Russia.  Yet while all these moves keep being made around them, the Obama administration proceeds as if this were still just an attempt to crush the Islamic State (ISIS).  The commander of the XVIIIth Airborne Corps has been given a task that amounts to helping the Iranians win.  Our incoherent policy has left us on both sides in Syria.  Our only real ally in the conflict, the Kurds, stand abandoned by America.

Who is even thinking about how to win the war?  Will the legacy of the Obama administration be a shattered NATO, a Turkey drawn into Russia’s orbit, an Iranian hegemony over the northern Middle East, and a resurgent Russia?  It certainly looks to be shaping up that way.  Russia is playing chess while the US is playing whack-a-mole.  The absence of a coherent governing strategy is glaring.

Fired up Levin SMOKES ‘despotic’ Obama for playing besties with terrorist Iran

obama jeeringConservative Review, by Phil Shiver, Aug. 25, 2016:

“Yes, I come to the microphone today FED UP over what’s happening to our country, and who’s doing it,” said Mark Levin during his radio program Wednesday night.

“This administration is so corrupt, so despotic, it operates in secret,” Levin exclaimed in reference to congressional investigators trying to uncover the trail of $1.3 billion in payments to Iran without aid from the Obama admin.

Obama allowing Iran to walk all over us shouldn’t surprise anybody, however. Playing besties with Iran has, in fact, been his most recognizable foreign policy achievement. “Obama from the beginning of his presidency tried to turn the country’s ruling clerics from foes to friends … it was an obsession,” read Levin citing Eli Lake of Bloomberg Politics.

Listen to the full clip of Levin tearing into Obama below:

But the Republican Party must take some of the blame, argues Levin, for “their failure to remove a lawless, dangerous man from the oval office out of nothing but sheer cowardice.”

Americans will be paying the consequences of that for a long time to come.

Phil Shiver is a writer for the CR Wire. His interests are Christian Ministry, Common Sense Politics, and anything active. Follow him on Twitter @kpshiver3.

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The administration claims the payment saved taxpayers; James Rosen has the details for ‘Special Report’

Also see:

Confirmed: That $400 Million in Pallets of Foreign Cash Was a Ransom Payment

Piles-of-Money

The President lied while wagging his finger at us.

CounterJihad, Aug. 19, 2016:

“In basic English, you’re saying you wouldn’t give them $400 million in cash until the prisoners were released, correct?”

That’s correct.”

With those words, State Department spokesman John Kirby confirmed two things about the $400 Million cash payment to Iran.  First, it was a ransom for hostages.  Second, the President directly lied to the American people about it.

Families “know we have a policy that we don’t pay ransom. And the notion that we would somehow start now, in this high-profile way, and announce it to the world, even as we’re looking in the faces of other hostage families whose loved ones are being held hostage, and saying to them ‘We don’t pay ransom,’ defies logic,” Obama added at the time.

As the New York Post reports, the President not only lied to the American people, he even lectured the press for raising the question.

Here at CounterJihad, we pointed out that the President broke US law and knowingly endangered American lives by this action.  Three days later, former Federal prosecutor Andrew C. McCarthy spelled out the specific laws that President Obama violated in great detail.  Now it is clear that the President lied about it, too.

American officials would not permit the Iran Air officials to take possession of the money and depart for Iran until they received word that a Swiss Air flight on which the U.S. hostages were boarded in Iran was “wheels up.” Only after the American officials were notified that the hostages’ plane had taken off were the Iranians allowed to take custody of the money. As Senators Ted Cruz (R., Texas) and Mike Lee (R., Utah) have pointed out in pressing the administration for answers about this transaction:

Although the administration has denied there was any quid pro quo, the close temporal proximity of the payment to the release of the hostages suggests otherwise.  As the Justice Department is never remiss to point out in court, an illicit quid pro quo can be inferred from the timing of the quid and the quo

So, to recap, the President himself said that the US government has a policy of not paying ransom for hostages.  He explained the reasoning for this policy in that paying ransom for hostages endangers American lives by making it more likely that people will take Americans hostage.  He then undertook to pay a ransom for hostages, lying about it to the American people and even chiding the free press for having the gall to bring it up.

This is clearly an impeachable offense.  The President knew what he was doing.  He knew it was wrong.  He did it anyway, and he kept it secret from both Congress and the American People.  In doing so, he violated both the law and the basic rules of statecraft.  That violation of the law raises this to the level of ‘high crimes or misdemeanors’ necessary to justify an impeachment.  The endangerment of American lives makes it more than a harmless oversight.  More Americans since have been taken hostage by the regime in Iran, an effect so obvious and predictable that even Mr. Obama knew it was going to happen if he paid the ransom.

He did it anyway.

Also see:

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Another Example of the Obama Admin’s Dishonest Campaign to Sell Iran Nuke Deal

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Center for Security Policy, by Fred Fleitz, Aug. 18, 2016:

Over the last few months, a lot of new information has come out on how the Obama White House misled the American public, Congress and the news media about the nuclear deal with Iran before Congress voted on the agreement last September.

According to a May 5, 2016 New York Times profile of National Security Council Adviser Ben Rhodes, the Obama administration used false narratives to promote the nuclear deal and conducted a campaign to manipulate and mislead journalists as part of a media “echo chamber.”

Several liberal organizations helped facilitate this echo chamber.  One of the most notorious was the far-left Ploughshares Fund which sought and received funding from liberal philanthropist George Soros. This included an April 2015 request for $750,000 to use mainstream media to counter opponents of the nuclear deal and parrot White House talking points.

Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-KS) has called for an investigation on whether large payments by Ploughshares to National Public Radio slanted NPR’s coverage of the nuclear deal and kept congressmen who opposed the agreement off the air.

The latest disclosure on how Ploughshares funding may still be distorting the debate over the nuclear deal concerns a Washington Post contributor.

According to an August 16, 2016 Washington Free Beacon by Adam Kredo, Allen Weiner, a Standord law professor and Ploughshares-funded expert, recently penned a Washington Postop-ed defending the nuclear deal but the Post failed to mention that he is on the payroll of the Ploughshares Fund.  According to Kredo, Stanford’s Center for International Security and Cooperation (where Weiner acts as a senior lecturer), received $100,000 from Ploughshares in 2015.  Weiner received a $15,000 payment from Ploughshares for a 2007 paper.

In an email to Kredo, Weiner denied speaking to anyone at Ploughshares about the nuclear deal or knowing the group’s position on the agreement.  Washington Post Editorial Page Editor Fred Hiatt disputed Kredo’s claim that Weiner is on the Ploughshares “payroll” and said he saw no conflicts of interest.

However, on August 11, 2016, the Washington Post ran an op-ed co-authored by Weiner that defended a $400 million payment to free four U.S. prisoners held by Iran as “American diplomacy at its finest.”  Many experts believe this payment amounted to ransom and have harshly criticized the Obama administration for concealing it from Congress.

The $400 million was secretly flown to Tehran from Geneva in an unmarked plane.  The payment was made in small denominations of euros and Swiss francs.  The plane transporting the American prisoners was not allowed to take off until after the planeload of cash landed.  Iran says this was a ransom payment.  The Justice Department opposed the timing of this payment because it looked like ransom.  Weiner ignored these facts and repeated the absurd Obama administration position that this was not a ransom payment but represented America repaying an old debt to Iran.

With the Obama administration under fire for the controversial $400 million it paid to Iran, I have no doubt someone recruited Weiner as part of its Iran deal echo chamber to draft his Washington Post op-ed defending its dubious rationale for this payment.  This op-ed did not appear out of thin air.

Was Weiner on the Ploughshares “payroll” to promote the Iran deal?  There’s no evidence of this (at least yet) and he denies it.  However, given the unusual timing of his piece mimicking administration talking points that the $400 million was not a ransom payment, it seems likely Weiner is part of the White House media echo chamber to mislead the American people and Congress about the Iran deal.

Weiner’s article also suggests this echo chamber is still being used to generate false narratives for the White House to defend the nuclear deal.  Further investigation by journalists may prove that the Ploughshares Fund is still funding these distortions.

Also see:

Former Brigadier General: Obama’s Briefer Told CENTCOM Official to Skew Intel on ISIS

United States President Barack Obama (Rex Features via AP Images)

United States President Barack Obama (Rex Features via AP Images)

PJ MEDIA, BY DEBRA HEINE,  AUGUST 15, 2016:

A former brigadier general revealed on Fox News Monday some new information about the White House’s role in U.S. Central Command’s skewing of intelligence to downplay the threats of ISIS and Al Qaeda.

Last week, a House Republican task force concluded in a 15-page report that U.S. military leaders altered intelligence reports “to paint a rosier picture” of the U.S.-led fight against ISIS than intelligence analysts believed was warranted.

The report blamed “structural and management changes” at the intelligence directorate for the distortions, but stopped short of explaining WHY the changes were made. According to Defense News, “the problems followed the change in Central Command’s leadership from Marine Gen. James Mattis, as CENTCOM commander, to Army Gen. Lloyd Austin.”

U.S. Army Brigadier Gen. Anthony Tata (Ret.) filled in some blanks on Fox News Monday afternoon, and if his allegations are true, the scandal reaches all the way to the president’s inner circle.

Tata explained that since Obama withdrew troops from Iraq, “there’s been chaos all over the Middle East.” But because the president campaigned on getting out of Iraq, he didn’t want to hear anything that countered his narrative that it was the right thing to do.

When the official narrative contradicted the facts on the ground, members of the intelligence community cried foul and there was a meeting to deal with the issue.

Via Fox News Insider:

Tata revealed that a source verified to him that he was directed by an individual from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, who conducts the president’s daily briefing, to stop producing “products of record” that did not fit the administration’s narrative of a defeated Al Qaeda and a non-threatening enemy in ISIS.Tata said that the president’s briefer told this individual to call him on secure line if he had any intelligence that portrayed ISIS in a stronger light than what the president had characterized to the public, which would not leave a paper trail.

He said that this distortion of intelligence on ISIS essentially led to the U.S. ignoring the growing threat and giving the terror group two years to take root.

Tata said that it was “highly irresponsible” for a senior official to downplay the intelligence because “now we have a real, valid national security threat that was borne out of this directive to Central Command.” He added that “now there are actually people being reprised against.”

“You have good American soldiers, sailors, Marines and civilians that are being isolated and targeted by people that are in the J-2 [CENTCOM’s intelligence directorate],” Tata said.

Asked if there had been people who were denied promotions, Tata indicated that it was worse than that: “I think they’ve been run out of the service,” he answered.

As PJ Media reported in April, two senior intelligence analysts at U.S. Central Command were allegedly forced out of their jobs because of their skeptical reporting on U.S.-backed rebel groups in Syria.

Tata cited for example “one young lady who spent $140,000 on legal bills” to defend herself against “this kind of thing.”

“She ultimately won,” Tata noted, but her career has been ruined.

As for the White House connection, the general said, “It could have been the president saying, ‘Don’t tell me this.’ Or it could have been the briefer going back after a rough meeting saying, ‘Hey look, don’t give me anymore of this stuff. I don’t want to bring it to the president.'”

Fact Check: Were Obama and Hillary Founders of ISIS? You Bet

AFP

AFP

Breitbart, by Kenneth R. Timmerman, Aug. 12, 2016:

Even the left-stream media is now acknowledging that Donald Trump “has a point” when he blasts Hilary and Obama for creating ISIS.

“Hillary Clinton is vulnerable. ISIS did gain strength during her time as Secretary of State,” said ABC News correspondent Martha Raddatz.

Conservative talk show host Hugh Hewitt tried to give Mr. Trump an out. “I know what you meant,” he suggested. “You meant that he [Obama] created the vacuum, he lost the peace.”

“No,” Trump replied. “I meant, he’s the founder of ISIS. I do. He was the most valuable player. I give him the most valuable player award. I give her, too, by the way, Hillary Clinton.”

Trump is correct – and quite literally, so.

First, a document. Then some history.

Thanks to Judicial Watch, we now have an August 2012 defense intelligence report on the civil war in Syria and the situation in Iraq that openly states that the policy of the United States and its allies was to support the Salafist opposition to Syrian president Bashar al-Assad.

That opposition, at the time spearheaded by Al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) and the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), soon morphed into the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, ISIS.

The report appears to have originated from U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) in Iraq, well before their intelligence product was tarnished by political interference from top commanders in 2014 aimed at diminishing the threat from ISIS.

Here’s what the report, originally stamped SECRET, actually says:

 AQI, through the spokesman of the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), Abu Muhammad al- Adnani… is calling on the Sunnis in Iraq, especially the tribes in the border regions (between Iraq and Syria), to wage war against the Syrian regime…

Opposition forces are trying to control the eastern areas (Hasaka and Der Zor) adjacent to the Western Iraqi provinces (Mosul and Anbar), in addition to neighboring Turkish borders. Western countries, the Gulf States and Turkey are supporting these efforts… [emphasis mine]

There is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in Eastern Syria (Hasak and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want…

It is no secret that the United States was supporting the Syrian opposition in 2012 and even until very recently. In December 2012, thanks in large measure to the active lobbying of Mrs. Clinton and U.S. Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford, Obama declared that the United States considered the opposition as “the legitimate representative of the Syrian people.”

What was secret until the release of this August 2012 defense intelligence report is that the United States knew that the Syrian opposition was dominated by al Qaeda in Iraq and the Islamic State of Iraq, groups that merged and morphed into what today we call ISIS.

So Donald Trump is literally correct. Obama and Hillary created ISIS. They figure among the founding fathers of the world’s most brutal terrorist organization. They deserve ISIS Most Valuable Player awards for their efforts.

Some of America’s enemies, such as Ayatollah Khamenei of Iran, have also accused the United States of creating ISIS – but as a tool for encroaching on Iran’s efforts to dominate the Muslim world. In fact, Obama and Hillary’s policies have simultaneously favored Iran and its rise to regional dominance, standing aside as Iran filled the vacuum in Iraq with its own militias and allowing Iranian troops and weapons to flow onto battlefields in Yemen, Syria, Lebanon, Libya and beyond.

Other documents obtained by Judicial Watch show that the United States was also complicit with arms shipments from Benghazi to the jihadi rebel groups in Syria.

These particular shipments were distinct from the more publicized case of al Entisar, a Libyan fishing vessel that arrived in Iskanderiyah, Turkey, crammed with weapons in late August 2012.

The shipments described in this recently declassified document were sent directly to small Syrian ports under rebel control and included RPG grenade-launchers, sniper rifles, and ammunition for 125mm and 155mm howitzers.

As I revealed two years ago, the U.S. backed arms shipments to ISIS and its allies in Syria appear to have been run out of the White House by then-counterterrorism advisor (and current CIA director) John Brennan. Running the clandestine arms shipments outside official channels allowed Obama and his allies – including Mrs. Clinton, who supported the arms shipments – to withhold that information from Congress.

Deflecting attention from these arms shipments is precisely why Obama and Hillary hatched their “blame-it-on-a-YouTube-video” narrative as the cause of the Benghazi attacks. It was a deliberate deception to trick the American people and cover-up their misdeeds.

Obama’s disastrous withdrawal of U.S. combat forces from Iraq in December 2011 clearly enhanced the ability of AQI and ISI to seize control of large portions of Iraqi territory and certainly contributed to the birth of ISIS. It also opened the door for Iran to fill the vacuum.

But as the August 2012 defense intelligence report states, that was the plan all along. Obama and Hillary wanted to create an ISIS-controlled enclave in Syria, “in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran).”

Donald Trump was right. Again.

Kenneth R. Timmerman is the author of Deception: the Making of the YouTube Video Hillary and Obama Blamed for Benghazi, released on July 19 and is now in its 4thprinting.

Also see:

The Trickle-Down Erosion of Honesty in Obama’s White House

ap_barack-obama-john-kerry_ap-photo-e1471008064574-640x480Breitbart, by  James Zumwalt, Aug. 12, 2016:

The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) conducts fraud prevention training for U.S. businesses. Training focus is both internal and external—preventing fraud against the business as well as fraud by company employees against others.

An important standard taught is the tone set for ethical integrity leadership:

An organization’s leadership creates the tone at the top – an ethical (or unethical) atmosphere in the workplace. Management’s tone has a trickle-down effect on employees. If top managers uphold ethics and integrity so will employees. But if upper management appears unconcerned with ethics and focuses solely on the bottom line, employees will be more prone to commit fraud and feel that ethical conduct isn’t a priority. In short, employees will follow the examples of their bosses.

Obviously, the larger an organization, the more difficult to hold all within it accountable to this standard. However, when numerous examples of a lapse in an organization’s ethical conduct exist, the tone set at the top comes into question.

Next week, a five-month long investigative report will be released finding U.S. Central Command intelligence ISIS and al-Qaeda threat assessments were intentionally downplayed. While offering no definitive evidence President Barack Obama ordered it, determining whether he did or not creates a need to look at the tone set for truth-telling.

Recently, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) ordered more ethics training for its attorneys based on a judge’s findings he was misled by DOJ lawyers in a high-profile lawsuit initiated by 26 states opposed to Obama’s immigration policies.

Apologizing for any confusion, DOJ lawyers deny making intentional misstatements. But their soft-pedaling contrasts significantly with the judge’s finding, “The misconduct in this case was intentional, serious and material.”

A recent Hillary Clinton email release suggests DOJ may also have blocked a Clinton Foundation probe.

For those believing it unfair to pin transgressions of one wayward federal agency as an indictment of the president under whom it serves, let us turn to Obama’s executive branch staff—where he held the most direct influence.

Ben Rhodes is Obama’s foreign policy guru. He is credited with setting the tone for the Iran nuclear deal both via his interactions with the press and Congress. Throughout the process, he maintained a low profile.

However, with the deal concluded, it has been difficult for Rhodes to contain his successful deception of the media and Congress. In a New York Times interview, he boasted about doing exactly that. And, anyone who knows Rhodes, knows he and Obama enjoy a mind-meld mentality.

For Obama defenders still believing DOJ misconduct and one self-admitted lying foreign policy guru do not an unethical president make, we continue.

Concerning the Iran nuclear deal, Secretary of State John Kerry attempted to deceive Congress there were no side deals. We now know there were at least three.

As reported by the Associated Press, under one side deal, restrictions imposed by the known agreement “will ease in slightly more than a decade” rather than the 15 years originally claimed, thus reducing “the time Tehran would need to build a bomb to six months from the present estimates of one year.”

An aspect of the Iran deal making more recent headlines is the $400 million cash payment to Iran—sold to Congress at the time as a release of “Iranian” funds. Disclosures now suggest the fund release was actually a devious way for Obama to pay a ransom for Americans the mullahs held hostage. Senior DOJ officials objecting to the payment were overruled by Kerry.  Obama continues to deny it was ransom money despite evidence strongly suggesting Tehran viewed it as such.

Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton’s vice presidential running mate, Senator Tim Kaine, also denying it was ransom, claims, “We don’t pay for hostages. We don’t negotiate for hostages, absolutely not. We’re a nation of laws…” Yet, the White House, admits some of the money paid Iran could go to fund terrorism—a clear violation of U.S. laws.

Tehran even boasts about Obama’s efforts to deceive Americans on the nuclear deal. The Iranians were told not to discuss their missile tests, conducting them in secret so as not to draw attention to a flawed deal.

Evidence has also come to light that the U.S. State Department manipulated data given to Congress, downplaying anti-Israel bias charges against the UN Human Rights Council.

But, enough about State Department lies. Let us now turn to other federal agencies.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) confirmed this month the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) had inappropriately targeted tea party and other conservative groups seeking non-profit status. As IRS targeting became an issue, it tried blaming it on “rogue agents.” However, internal documents reveal the tone was set at the agency’s top level.

Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper also suffered effects of the tone. In June 2013, he apologized to the Senate Intelligence Committee chairman for lying during a hearing. He had responded “No,” when asked specifically if NSA was spying on Americans. Only after Edward Snowden leaked classified documents revealing secretive U.S. government programs monitoring hundreds of millions of Americans did Clapper’s lie come to light.

The tone from the top includes misrepresenting facts tied to our national security and Muslim immigration.

The Senate Judiciary Committee determined in June 2016 the number of refugees arrested for terror in the U.S. was more than three times higher than what State Department reported.

Additionally, concerning criminal aliens in general, it was determined the number reported by Immigration and Customs Enforcement as released in 2014 who then went on to commit additional crimes was under-reported to the House Judiciary Committee by almost 90 percent. This led Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte to say Obama was creating “a sanctuary for tens of thousands of criminal aliens.”

The Secret Service also fell victim to Obama’s unethical tone, releasing a congressman’s personnel file in retribution for his disclosures about agent misconduct.

Obama’s unethical leadership has had a trickle-down effect. While 42 years ago such leadership caught up to a U.S. president, it appears Obama, inexplicably, will be spared a similar fate.

Lt. Colonel James G. Zumwalt, USMC (Ret.), is a retired Marine infantry officer who served in the Vietnam war, the U.S. invasion of Panama and the first Gulf war. He is the author of “Bare Feet, Iron Will–Stories from the Other Side of Vietnam’s Battlefields,” “Living the Juche Lie: North Korea’s Kim Dynasty” and “Doomsday: Iran–The Clock is Ticking.” He frequently writes on foreign policy and defense issues.

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Also see:

More than incompetence in Benghazi

Illustration on the real factors behind the Benghazi facilities attack by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Illustration on the real factors behind the Benghazi facilities attack by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Washington Times, , August 8, 2016:

Trey Gowdy’s recently released Special Committee on Benghazi report, followed by the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi report, provide new insights into the tragedy that cost the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens. This catastrophe goes much deeper than our failure to respond to multiple, well-coordinated attacks on our Benghazi facilities on the night of Sept. 11, 2012. The genesis for the attack was actually the “Outreach to Muslims” speech by President Obama on June 4, 2009, in Cairo with the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood leadership prominently seated in the front row. When he declared that it was part of his responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam, wherever they appear — that said it all.

Therefore, when al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood-controlled militias launched their revolt against the Moammar Gadhafi regime in February 2011, the Obama administration showed where its true sympathies lay. It switched sides in the global war on terror and allied with the Islamic jihadists. This dramatic change in U.S. policy can most likely be attributed to the fact that Mr. Obama made an ideological commitment to support the expansion of Muslim Brotherhood power throughout the Middle East and North Africa. This commitment is substantiated by the 2010 Presidential Study Directive 11, which solicited proposals and instructed key government agencies to collaborate on the formation and execution of a plan for enabling Muslim Brotherhood expansion by way of regime change in Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Yemen and other Middle East countries.

Based on newly released emails, there is no question that then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Obama knew they would be supporting Islamic jihadists — our sworn enemy — with funding, training and weapons, as well as facilitating the flow of arms to rebels in Syria, including those that morphed into the Islamic State.

 Mrs. Clinton then ignored all military advice not to intervene militarily in the Libyan civil war. The decision turned out to be a catastrophic disaster that transformed Libya into an Islamic jihadi safe haven. When Gadhafi entered into truce negotiations with Gen. Carter Ham of United States Africa Command, and sent signals that he was willing to abdicate, the indications are that it was Mrs. Clinton who terminated those negotiations. Her political aide Jake Sullivan said it all when he wrote in August 2011 that Mrs. Clinton had “leadership/ownership/stewardship of [Libya] policy from start to finish.” This alone should raise serious questions about her judgment and leadership qualifications.

According to the Gowdy Select Committee report and new evidence, there was never a humanitarian crisis in Benghazi, which was the stated reason for the intervention. It appears Mrs. Clinton, the Clinton Foundation and unscrupulous individuals’ real motivation for intervention was money. Incredible.

After the fall of Gadhafi in October 2011, chaos reigned in Benghazi. In Egypt, Mohammed Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood government was firmly in control. With the Brotherhood penetration of U.S. government agencies and carte blanche entry into the White House, Egypt enjoyed unprecedented relations with America. Mr. Morsi’s No. 1 objective was to attain the release of Omar Abdel-Rahman (the Blind Sheikh).

Repeated requests by Ambassador Stevens for increased security were either denied or unanswered. Security forces that were in country were deliberately withdrawn, e.g., Lt. Col. Andy Woods’ 16-man team stationed in Tripoli was removed. On Aug. 11, Stevens called the security situation unpredictable. On Aug. 16, he sent a cable stating that the Special Mission Compound could not withstand a coordinated attack.

On Aug. 29, the Libyan government placed Benghazi under a “state of maximum alert” due to attacks on foreigners and other acts of violence. According to the CIA annex security team, there were multiple warnings of an impending attack against our facilities in Benghazi. For reasons that remain unanswered, these warnings were ignored.

Read more

James A. Lyons, a retired U.S. Navy admiral, was commander in chief of the U.S. Pacific Fleet and senior U.S. military representative to the United Nations.

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Dr. Sebastian Gorka: Intel Professionals Say ‘Reality Doesn’t Matter’ When White House Spins War Against ISIS

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Breitbart, by John Hayward, Aug. 6, 2016:

Breitbart News National Security Editor Dr. Sebastian Gorka, author of the best-selling book Defeating Jihad: The Winnable War, joined guest host Mike Huckabee on Fox News’ “Hannity” to address President Obama’s mixed messages on the war against the Islamic State.

“The President’s kind of all over the board on this. He tells us that this is an ISIS that’s getting defeated, but we still have a threat. So which is it?” Huckabee asked.

“That is the question, Governor,” Dr. Gorka replied, with a rueful laugh. “You just have to listen to the professionals. Let’s take politics out of the equation. Let’s take spin out of the equation.”

“We have the most senior intelligence officer in federal government – that’s DNI Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence – who, in his last testimony, his last unclassified testimony on the Hill, just a matter of maybe three weeks ago, said the following: he said that the capacity of the Islamic State, of ISIS, to execute global attacks has not been diminished at all by our actions in theater,” Gorka recalled.

“That’s Number One. Their capacity to do terrorism in San Bernardino, in Orlando, in France, has not changed,” he stressed. “And on top of that, the one sentence that the media really missed – it came later on in his testimony – is the following: he said, in my 30+ [year] career as an intelligence professional, I have never seen the world as unstable as it is today. That’s after seven and a half years of Obama and Clinton foreign policy.”

“Let’s leave the answer to the professionals,” Gorka urged. “The most senior intelligence officer said the world is on fire.”

“How does the President, and this Administration, get away with diminishing the description, and the threat that ISIS poses to the world?” Huckabee asked.

“Because it’s not about reality. It’s not about protecting America,” Gorka answered. “It’s about spin. It’s about legacy.”

“Think about the fact that last year, we had 60 CENTCOM analysts, Central Command analysts – the people who are looking at ISIS, at Syria, at Iraq – publicly complain and protest that their analysis reports on ISIS were being either doctored, changed, or thrown away when they didn’t comport with the White House narrative that we’re winning,” he said. “If it didn’t meet the preconceived political message, it was distorted, or it was lost.”

“We didn’t even have that, Governor, during Vietnam,” Gorka reminded Huckabee. “We never had 60 intel analysts say reality doesn’t matter, and the White House simply wants to spin. It’s outrageous.”

Huckabee wondered why there hasn’t been a definitive effort to shut ISIS out of social media platforms, which they have aggressively used for jihad recruiting and strategic communications.

“There’s a couple of reasons for that. The first one is a technical one: the Internet was invented by DARPA, by the defense research hub for the DOD, and it was invented deliberately to have built-in redundancy,” Gorka explained. “So you can shut down one server, shut down one IPA address provider, and it will rejuvenate, and another place will take over. So the technology is really on the side of the terrorists.”

“Secondly, what is Internet provision about? It’s about the bottom line. It’s about making a buck. It’s about the service provider having the shares report positively in the next quarterly stock meeting,” he continued.

“Look what happened after San Bernardino. Apple doesn’t want to allow the FBI to open the county government’s iPhone that was issued to Mr. Farook,” said Gorka, referring to jihadi Syed Farook, a county employee whose encrypted telephone became the focus of a national controversy. “Why is that? Because they’re scared over whether they’re going to make profit on the next iPhone 7.”

“This is the challenge. We really have a lack of cooperation between the national security establishment, the private sector, and the nature of the Internet itself,” Dr. Gorka said.

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Also see:

More Obama Doublespeak on Iran

obama-big-brotherGingrich Productions, by Newt Gingrich, August 5, 2016:

The Obama administration has instructed us that Obamacare’s tax is not a tax, that its policy of not enforcing immigration law is “prosecutorial discretion,” and that hundreds of American military personnel on the ground in Iraq and Syria are not “boots on the ground.” So it’s not surprising to hear from the President this week that money paid in exchange for hostages is not a “ransom”.

The administration insists that’s not what we should call the planeload of $400 million in cash that arrived in Iran at the same time as four American hostages were released in January.

Thankfully, the facts are in less dispute than the definition of the word.

In negotiations that led to the release of the hostages, the Wall Street Journal reports, “The Iranians were demanding the return of $400 million” sent to the U.S. in 1979, and “they also wanted billions of dollars as interest accrued since then.”

Since it would be a violation of U.S. law to pay the regime in U.S. dollars however, the Journal reports that the Treasury Department asked European central banks to change its payment into Euros and Swiss Francs before loading the notes on a plane and flying them to Iran.

There, one of the hostages involved told Fox News, the Iranian captors told the Americans they were “waiting for another plane” before they would be released.

So to review: the Iranians made a demand for $400 million in exchange for releasing the hostages. The U.S. government went to extraordinary lengths to deliver $400 million to Iran. And as a result, the hostages were released. But this wasn’t a ransom situation?

“No, it was not,” says White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest. “It is against the policy of the United States to pay ransom for hostages.”

“We do not pay ransom,” President Obama echoed. “We didn’t here, and we won’t in the future.”

In his famous essay, “Politics and the English Language,” George Orwell describes words for which “the person who uses them has his own private definition, but allows his hearer to think he means something quite different.” Perhaps President Obama’s own private definition of “ransom” requires the use of a paper bag–or U.S. dollars.

Whatever the President’s beliefs about what he’s done, however, clearly he has sent a signal to Iran that the regime can take hostages and extract concessions. The $400 million in cash will likely endanger more Americans and result in more false imprisonments.

It is worth remembering that prisoners whose stories are known to the public had done absolutely nothing wrong, and should never have been imprisoned to begin with. No payment should have been required to secure their release. And yet the same administration that recently arrested a police officer who tried to send $245 to ISIS has now sent hundreds of millions to the world’s leading state sponsor of terror.

That Iran would take innocent Americans hostage for ransom is a reminder of how untrustworthy and dangerous a regime the Obama administration is dealing with on nuclear weapons. Such actions are one of the reasons there are sanctions on the country in the first place.

Indeed, those restrictions made the $400 million in cash an even sweeter deal than it might seem. It solved a serious problem for the regime.

As a senior U.S. official explained to the Wall Street Journal, “Sometimes the Iranians want cash because it’s so hard for them to access things in the international financial system. They know it can take months just to figure out how to wire money from one place to another.”

In other words, Iran got more than its money’s worth out of the plane full of cash. And what did the regime do with it? As Bloomberg reported, the funds are going straight into their war chest: “Iran’s Guardian Council approved the government’s 2017 budget that instructed Iran’s Central Bank to transfer the $1.7 billion [the ransom plus interest] to the military.”

So the Obama administration hasn’t just struck a deal with Iran that will allow it to obtain nuclear weapons. In paying the ransom money, the U.S. has also funded the military that could seek to use those weapons against us.

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English version of Iranian documentary on hostage swap dated 2/16

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OBAMA LIED! US Iranian Hostage Says Iran Would Not Let Plane Leave Until Ransom Plane Arrived

Also see:

Obama: Islamic State Will Be Defeated ‘Inevitably’

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Meanwhile, in case you are having trouble keeping track of ISIS related arrests here in the United States, here is the list at Threat Knowledge Group. CURRENT COUNT: 109

Breitbart, by Charlie Spiering, Aug. 5, 2016:

President Barack Obama tried to talk down Islamic State terrorism during his press conference at the Pentagon, insisting that it would be defeated “inevitably.”

“ISIL turns out not to be invincible,” he said. “They’re, in fact, inevitably going to be defeated.”

Obama met with his national security advisers at the Pentagon to discuss his ongoing war against ISIS, citing the importance of freeing Mosul and Raqqah from their control.

But he failed to outline any significant changes to his strategy, citing an ongoing commitment to supporting partners on the ground.

“What we’ve learned from our efforts to defeat al Qaeda is that if we stay on it, our intelligence gets better and we adapt as well,” he said. “And eventually, we will dismantle these networks also.”

Obama pointed out that two years ago, ISIS was making gains and threatening Baghdad, but argued that as a result of his efforts, they had lost territory.

“Even ISIL’s leaders know they’re going to keep losing,” he said. “In their message to followers, they’re increasingly acknowledging that they may lose Mosul and Raqqah. And ISIL is right. They will lose them.”

Obama urged Americans to “keep our eye on the ball and not panic” in spite of a series of ISIS attacks on civilians around the world.

“We have to understand that as painful and as tragic as these attacks are that we are going to keep on grinding away, preventing them wherever we can, using a whole government effort to knock down their propaganda, to disrupt their networks, to take their key operatives off the battlefield, and that eventually we will win,” he explained.

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Jim Hanson: Obama Is a ‘Dismal Failure’ in Fighting Global Jihad

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Obama Admin Hid Details of Multi-Million Dollar Cash Payout to Iran From Congress

John Kerry and Javad Zarif / AP

John Kerry and Javad Zarif / AP

Washington Free Beacon, by Adam Kredo, Aug. 4, 2016

The Obama administration took steps to withhold from lawmakers the details of a $400 million cash payout to Iran and continues to rebuke inquiries from Congress for information about how another $1.3 billion in taxpayer funds was awarded to the Islamic Republic, according to multiple conversations with congressional sources apprised of the matter.

U.S. officials familiar with the recent transfer of $400 million in hard currency to Iran withheld details of the exchange from Congress during briefings in classified and unclassified settings, the Washington Free Beacon has learned.

The disclosure threatens to complicate efforts by the administration to downplay new reports detailing how U.S. officials used an unmarked aircraft to transfer $400 million in “pallets of cash” to Iran on the same day it freed several U.S. hostages.

Lawmakers and others have claimed for months that the payment was part of a “ransom” aimed at securing the release of the hostages. The White House denies this claim and has said the payment was part of a settlement to resolve decades-old legal disputes with the Islamic Republic.

Nearly eight months after congressional officials demanded a formal accounting of this payment–which amounted to $1.7 billion in total–the administration is still declining to provide lawmakers with the full story, sparking outrage on Capitol Hill.

“It has been seven months since President Obama announced that he was giving the Islamic Republic of Iran almost $2 billion,” Rep. Mike Pompeo (R., Kan.), a member of the House Intelligence Committee, told the Free Beacon on Wednesday.  “And we are just now finding out damning details about how $400 million, which is less than half of the total, was sent to Iran using foreign aircraft and foreign currencies.”

Pompeo led several unsuccessful inquiries into the cash payout. He said the administration has been stonewalling efforts to obtain a full readout of the exchange in both classified and unclassified settings since January.

Pompeo expressed anger that the administration is “totally stonewalling congressional inquiries,” while leaving it to the press to unearth the details of the exchange.

“That is far too long of a timeline, especially as it is in the face of the Obama administration totally stonewalling congressional inquiries into this matter since January,” Pompeo said.

“We still do not know how the other $1.3 billion was sent, and we still have three Americans sitting in prisons in Iran,” Pompeo said, explaining that the bulk of the cash to Iran remains shrouded in mystery.

Congressional sources with knowledge of the situation told the Free Beacon that the State Department and other administration officials withheld details regarding the payment for more than three months–and only then provided a barebones accounting of the payout that omitted all mention of the secret cash delivery.

Sources who spoke to the Free Beacon said this was an intentional effort by the administration to keep lawmakers in the dark and prevent them from receiving a full accounting of the $1.7 billion payout.

A timeline centered around these inquires reveals that administration officials stonewalled Congress for months before providing responses that omitted any mention of the hard currency transfer.

Pompeo launched an inquiry seeking further details in January, when the legal settlement was first announced.

By mid-March, the State Department still had not responded, as was first reported by the Free Beacon.

The State Department informed Pompeo later that month in a hand-delivered letter that the information he was seeking was classified.

A classified briefing was held in late April. Sources familiar with the briefing told the Free Beacon that administration officials made no mention of the $400 million cash delivery. This information was only made public when the Wall Street Journal reported it late Monday.

One congressional source working on the issue said that the Obama administration could now spend funds set aside for American victims of terrorism on further payments to Iran.

“This just makes you wonder how far President Obama is willing to go to appease the Iranians,” the source said. “Iran keeps taking American citizens hostage because it knows the administration will cave. It wouldn’t surprise me if the president has authorized negotiations with Iran over the $2 billion that is meant to go to the families of the victims of Iranian terror.”

“Every action this administration has taken toward Iran has been in furtherance of the regime’s interests and at our expense,” the source added. “What else is currently being negotiated between the administration and Iran? The American people deserve to know and they should demand full transparency.”

A second congressional source involved in the issue told the Free Beacon that obfuscation by the administration has become a pattern and practice when it comes to Iran.

“Congress continues to press the Obama administration on every change and new policy regarding Iran,” the source said. “At every turn, we are met with ‘no comment’ and further secrecy, which is why the American people do not like this deal and understand it does not make them safer.”

Another source familiar with the administration’s thinking said that administration efforts to downplay the latest disclosures do no comport with the reality that this payment was part of a secret negotiation.

“The Obama admin is hoping to convince people that there’s nothing new in this scandal,” the source said. “But they can’t convince members of Congress because members know that they weren’t told all the details about this cash payment for hostages. For instance, the administration has refused to fully disclose all the ways in which it has transferred money to Iran all of the time.”

The White House declined on Wednesday to offer further details to reporters.

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Also see:

Schizophrenic – President Obama’s Two Faces on Radical Islam

ob_1By Brian Fairchild, August 3, 2016

President Obama is renowned for his insistence that there is nothing Islamic about the Islamic State, and for his refusal to utter any Islamic religious references when discussing international terrorism. He drove this point home recently when he angrily refused to describe the war against jihadis as a war against “radical Islamic terrorism”. Few realize, however, that the president has definitively and repeatedly contradicted his own statements, and has actually profiled the terrorist enemy with the same words he has criticized others for using – that the enemy attacking the United States is a “violent, radical…interpretation of Islam” and that there is a need for Islam as a whole to challenge that interpretation.

The president has often defended his policy of denying a connection between terrorism and Islam by stating that to do so would bestow legitimacy on the terrorists, insult Islam, and alienate Muslims, but he himself has precisely made this connection in speeches that appear to have been missed by the media and counter terrorism officials and analysts.

In two public statements: one before his Countering Violent Extremism conference, and one before a Muslim audience at the Islamic Society of Baltimore, as well as in statements he made to a journalist from The Atlantic magazine, the president directly contradicted his own statements and actually profiled the enemy as followers of a violent radical interpretation of Islam, an interpretation so ingrained in Islam that there is a need for the whole of Islam to challenge it. Indeed, his description was so accurate, that had it become the foundation of official US counter terrorism policy, the nation’s national security agencies would have been adequately armed to confront the threat.

Note: This paper will use the intelligence analysis format of establishing the relevant facts, in this case, by using only direct quotes from the president that will lead to general findings based on those facts that will lead to a logical conclusion and forecast of future action.

All of the entries in the “FACTS” section are direct quotes from the president taken from two official White House documents: Statement from the President in his closing from the summit on Countering Violent Extremism, February 18, 2015, and Statements by the President at the Islamic Society of Baltimore, February 3, 2016, as well as from his April 2016 one-on-one interviews with journalist Jeffrey Goldberg from The Atlantic magazine. As a reference aide, each quote will be highlighted and linked to the proper document by the initials CVE, to denote the Countering Violent Extremism document, ISB, to denote the Islamic Society of Baltimore document, or The Atlantic, to denote the president’s interview with Jeffery Goldberg.

FACTS:

The enemy:

• The Atlantic: “It is very clear what I mean, which is that there is a violent, radical, fanatical, nihilistic interpretation of Islam by a faction—a tiny faction—within the Muslim community that is our enemy, and that has to be defeated. There is also the need for Islam as a whole to challenge that interpretation of Islam, to isolate it, and to undergo a vigorous discussion within their community about how Islam works as part of a peaceful, modern society…”

• ISB: “…it is undeniable that a small fraction of Muslims propagate a perverted interpretation of Islam. This is the truth…We are at war with people who have perverted Islam.”

The enemy’s justification for its actions and its worldwide acceptance:

• CVE: “Al Qaeda and ISIL do draw, selectively, from the Islamic texts. They do depend upon the misperception around the world that they speak in some fashion for people of the Muslim faith, that Islam is somehow inherently violent, that there is some sort of clash of civilizations.”

How the enemy radicalizes and recruits young Muslims:

• CVE: “Al Qaeda and ISIL and groups like it are desperate for legitimacy. They try to portray themselves as religious leaders — holy warriors in defense of Islam. That’s why ISIL presumes to declare itself the “Islamic State.” And they propagate the notion that America — and the West, generally — is at war with Islam. That’s how they recruit. That’s how they try to radicalize young people.”

The enemy’s success in the United States:

• ISB: “But, right now, there is a organized extremist element that draws selectively from Islamic texts, twists them in an attempt to justify their killing and their terror. They combine it with false claims that America and the West are at war with Islam. And this warped thinking that has found adherents around the world — including, as we saw, tragically, in Boston and Chattanooga and San Bernardino — is real. It’s there.”

The enemy’s focus for radicalization and recruitment:

• CVE: “We have to be honest with ourselves. Terrorist groups like al Qaeda and ISIL deliberately target their propaganda in the hopes of reaching and brainwashing young Muslims, especially those who may be disillusioned or wrestling with their identity. That’s the truth.”

The Muslim Community’s responsibility:

• CVE: “…we’ve got to discredit these ideologies. We have to tackle them head on. And we can’t shy away from these discussions. And too often, folks are, understandably, sensitive about addressing some of these root issues, but we have to talk about them, honestly and clearly.”

• ISB: “Muslims around the world have a responsibility to reject extremist ideologies that are trying to penetrate within Muslim communities…Muslim political leaders have to push back on the lie that the West oppresses Muslims, and against conspiracy theories that says America is the cause of every ill in the Middle East.”

• CVE: “Faith leaders may notice that someone is beginning to espouse violent interpretations of religion, and that’s a moment for possible intervention
Anti-American elements with the Muslim Community:

• CVE: But if we are going to effectively isolate terrorists, if we’re going to address the challenge of their efforts to recruit our young people, if we’re going to lift up the voices of tolerance and pluralism within the Muslim community, then we’ve got to acknowledge that their job is made harder by a broader narrative that does exist in many Muslim communities around the world that suggests the West is at odds with Islam in some fashion. The reality…is that there’s a strain of thought that doesn’t embrace ISIL’s tactics, doesn’t embrace violence, but does buy into the notion that the Muslim world has suffered historical grievances…does buy into the belief that so many of the ills in the Middle East flow from a history of colonialism or conspiracy; does buy into the idea that Islam is incompatible with modernity or tolerance, or that it’s been polluted by Western values…So those beliefs exist. In some communities around the world they are widespread. And so it makes individuals — especially young people who already may be disaffected or alienated — more ripe for radicalization.

FINDINGS:

Based on the facts above, it is clear that that:

• Despite his years-long insistence that Islamist terrorism is not Islamic, the president’s statements demonstrate, quite to the contrary, that he full-well understands that the ideology of the Islamic State, al Qaeda, and other jihad groups is inextricably connected to Islam. This is nowhere more apparent than when he stated that this violent and radical interpretation requires intervention by the entire religion. Such a requirement reveals just how extensively it permeates the religion, which quite different from the notion the president espouses that describes the Islamic State and other jihad groups as illegitimate Islamic impostors who “portray” themselves as religious leaders. Similarly, when the president told the audience at the Islamic Society of Baltimore that “a small fraction of Muslims propagate” this interpretation, he was admitting to a Muslim audience that the followers of these movements are not outsiders or impostors, but are legitimate followers of Islam – Muslims.

• The president did not name the particular “interpretation of Islam” he described, but it is likely he was referring to Salafi-jihadism, which is how all Sunni jihad groups self-identify. Salafism is a legitimate ultraconservative strain of Sunni Islam. It is not a creation of any Islamist terrorist organization. Quite the opposite is true. Al Qaeda and all Sunni Islamist terrorist organizations emerged from a Salafi religious foundation. Salafis insist that the only sources of Islamic authority are a literal acceptance of Allah’s commands in the Qur’an, and a strict literal acceptance and emulation of the life of the Prophet Muhammad. Compared to the world population of 1.6 billion Muslims, Salafism is comprised a small percentage of the total number of Muslims, but this minority is estimated to be in the millions.

• The president’s statements definitively contradict the Countering Violent Extremism initiative because he profiles the enemy as belonging to one particular group – Muslims – and not as separate individuals who for unforeseeable reasons become radicalized and commit random acts of violence. Moreover, he places the responsibility for discrediting and countering this radical Islamist ideology squarely on the shoulders of Muslim communities.

• The president’s admission that there is an anti-American “strain of thought” widespread in many Muslim communities around the world that proselytizes that Islam is incompatible with modernism and tolerance and “makes individuals — especially young people who already may be disaffected or alienated — more ripe for radicalization”, contradicts his general message that young Muslims are primarily radicalized over the Internet, and brings to the fore the role that radical imams, mosques, organizations, and radical speakers play in supporting radical Islamist networks. Again, this places the Muslim community front and center as a locus for Islamist behavior. Although he did not name this anti-American “strain of thought”, it is likely he was referring to the ideology of the worldwide Islamist movement propagated by the Muslim Brotherhood.

CONCLUSION/FORECAST:

The president’s two-faced stance regarding radical Islam is hypocritical at best, and schizophrenic at worst and is best understood by viewing two of the president’s quotes back-to-back.

In the first statement given on June 14, 2016, the president is reacting angrily to Donald Trump’s call for him to use the term “radical Islamic terrorism”. In response, he rhetorically asked the following questions in order to deride Trump’s demand:

• “What exactly would using this label accomplish? What exactly would it change? Would it make ISIL less committed to try and kill Americans? Would it bring in more allies? Is there a military strategy that is served by this?

The second statement appeared in The Atlantic interview in April 2016, two months prior to his rhetorical derision of Trump, so while the president rhetorically lambasted Trump for his naïve and outlandish demands, he knew Trump was correct. In fact, in his April statement he had described the enemy by using the exact adjective Trump had demanded – “radical”, and he had already answered his own question as to whether there was a strategy that would benefit by using the term “radical Islamic terrorism”:

• “…there is a violent, radical, fanatical, nihilistic interpretation of Islam by a faction—a tiny faction—within the Muslim community that is our enemy, and that has to be defeated. There is also the need for Islam as a whole to challenge that interpretation of Islam, to isolate it, and to undergo a vigorous discussion within their community about how Islam works as part of a peaceful, modern society…”

For reasons yet unclear and beyond the scope of this analysis, the president ignored all the facts that he marshaled above and created the generic Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) initiative to deal with terrorism instead. The program assiduously avoids all of the issues so far discussed, and is the antithesis and a negation of all of the president’s personal beliefs and his understanding of the jihadi threat as elucidated above. Here, the president, once again demonstrating schizophrenic tendencies, explains why all he has said above should be discounted:

• “We all know there is no one profile of a violent extremist or terrorist, so there’s no way to predict who will become radicalized. Around the world, and here in the United States, inexcusable acts of violence have been committed against people of different faiths, by people of different faiths — which is, of course, a betrayal of all our faiths. It’s not unique to one group, or to one geography, or one period of time.”

This self-defeating initiative, based on no sound research or intelligence, and with no foundation in reality, has undermined the national security and safety of the country.
The most likely forecast based on all of the above is that with roughly four months to go until the end of his administration, is that the president will not reverse himself and inaugurate a new counter terrorism policy targeted against the very ideology and threats he says must be discredited and defeated.

Brian Fairchild was a career officer in CIA’s Clandestine Service. He has served in Asia, Southeast Asia, Europe, the Arabian Peninsula, and Afghanistan. Mr. Fairchild writes periodic intelligence analyses on topics of strategic importance.