Barack Hussein Obama's Disavowal of Muslim Violence


John Kerry should recognize Christian genocide

Kirsten Powers
December 7, 2015
USA Today

Secretary of State should call what ISIL is committing by its true name.

In October, Islamic State militants in Syria demanded that two Christian women and six men convert to Islam. When they refused, the women were publicly raped and then beheaded along with the men. On the same day, militants cut off the fingertips of a 12-year-old boy in an attempt to force his Christian father to convert. When his father refused, they were brutalized and then crucified.

This has become the plight of Christians in the Middle East at the hands of the Islamic State terrorist group, also known as ISIL or ISIS. Beheadings, crucifixions and enslavement are visited on those who won't renounce their religious beliefs. The lucky ones are murdered in more mundane ways or driven from their homes with nothing but the clothes on their backs.

This year, we’ve seen a Newsweek cover exclaiming, “The New Exodus: Christians Flee ISIS in the Middle East,” and a New York Times piece asking, “Is This the End of Christianity in the Middle East?” The progressive Center for American Progress noted in a March report, “Some of the oldest Christian communities in the world are disappearing in the very lands where their faith was born and first took root.”

One of the authors of that report, Brian Katulis, has joined forces with a diverse group of Christian leaders to urge the State Department to recognize what everyone else seems to see: There is an ongoing genocide against Middle Eastern Christians at the hands of radical jihadists.

In a letter sent to the State Department on Friday, a wide range of leaders — including the archbishop of Washington, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, and the Rev. Samuel Rodriguez of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference — requested a meeting with Secretary of State John Kerry to make this case. (They've received no response.) The matter is urgent as the State Department is reportedly poised to designate ISIL’s attacks on the Yazidi people of Iraq as a genocide.

There is no question that the Yazidis — who practice an ancient religion that includes elements of Islam and Christianity — deserve the designation. But so do Christians, along with other minority religious groups in the Middle East. A 2014 United Nations resolution noted that while many members of religious and ethnic minorities are suffering at the hands of ISIL, Christians and Yazidis deserved special mention.

Indeed, ISIL warned Christians in a video, “You will not have safety, even in your dreams, until you embrace Islam.” Its militants or their affiliates have murdered or claimed credit for killing Christians in Syria, Nigeria, Iraq and Libya.

Invoking the “g word” to recognize this fact is not just a matter of semantics. “Groups that have been designated as genocide victims are much more likely to receive military protection, including arming and training their militias for self-defense, which is always the best defense against genocide,” Gregory Stanton, the former president of the International Association of Genocide Scholars, told me. “Members of such groups are also much more likely to receive preferential treatment as bona fide refugees under the U.N. convention and protocols on the status of refugees.”

The State Department’s disinterest in including Christians in its potential genocide designation appears to rely on a recent Holocaust Memorial Museum report asserting that, unlike Yazidis, Christians are not suffering from genocidal attacks because ISIL gives them the “option of paying the jizya (tax) to avoid conversion or death” because they, like Jews, are “people of the book.”

Unfortunately, this does not reflect reality. The Hudson Institute’s Nina Shea — a renowned religious persecution expert — explained to me: “In most examples, there is no jizya option (for Christians) and, when there is, the ISIL tax is so ruinous that eventually a family’s property and even children are taken and all are forced to convert to Islam or killed.”

ISIL doesn’t want to co-exist with Middle Eastern Christians. It wants to eliminate them. Let’s stop pretending otherwise and call this what it is: a genocide.

Kirsten Powers writes weekly for USA TODAY and is author of The Silencing: How the Left is Killing Free Speech.


Obama Administration Granted Asylum And Residency To 1,519 Foreigners With Terror Ties

Daily Caller
9-29-2015
by Chuck Ross

The Obama administration granted asylum to more than 1,500 foreigners with ties to terrorist organizations last year because they were deemed to have provided support to the groups “while under duress.”

The figures are contained in an annual report that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) sent to Congress this month. The conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch obtained the report and published it online Tuesday.

During fiscal year 2014, USCIS applied exemptions to 1,519 foreigners with ties to terrorist organizations who applied for discretionary relief. Of that total, 806 of the foreigners granted discretionary relief were for refugee applicants while another 614 were applicants for lawful permanent resident status.

Of the 1,519 with terrorist associations, 627 provided material support, “while under duress,” to undesignated terrorist groups. Another 189 provided material support, “while under duress,” to designated terrorist groups.

Designated terrorist groups are the most dangerous. They are classified as Tier I and Tier II organizations and include groups like Hamas, Hezbollah, al-Qaeda and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

Nine foreigners granted relief received military-type training, “while under duress,” from terrorist groups; 28 provided voluntary medical care to members of terrorist groups; 37 were qualified aliens who had existing immigration benefits who had “provided material support to, solicited funds for, solicited individuals for membership in or received military-type training from Tier III terrorist organizations.

USCIS asserts that applicants are thoroughly vetted and pose no terrorist threat to the U.S. Applicants’ names and fingerprints are compared against terrorist watch lists. Following that process, individual applicants are reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the Department of Homeland Security.

Such applicants would have been rejected prior to Feb. 2014, according to Judicial Watch. That’s when the Obama administration announced that DHS could exercise discretion whether to grant asylum to aliens “who provided limited material support.”

“Before the Obama administration tweaked a federal law last year, these foreign nationals would have been banned from the country for supporting terrorist causes,” Judicial Watch asserts.

“The bottom line is that the U.S. government is allowing them all to stay in the country with rights and benefits afforded to legal residents despite their terrorist connections and associations,” the watchdog argues.


Obama: Climate change “an immediate threat to our national security,” caused jihad in Nigeria and Syria

MAY 21, 2015
BY ROBERT SPENCER

Obama’s claims here are based on the proposition that poverty causes terrorism. Drought led to jihad in Nigeria, and drought, crop failures and high food prices led to jihad in Syria. But if poverty causes terrorism, one wonders why the world isn’t full of Haitian and Angolan terrorists. Also, poverty doesn’t cause terrorism. The Economist reported in 2010: “Social scientists have collected a large amount of data on the socioeconomic background of terrorists. According to a 2008 survey of such studies by Alan Krueger of Princeton University, they have found little evidence that the typical terrorist is unusually poor or badly schooled.” CNS News noted in September 2013 that “according to a Rand Corporation report on counterterrorism, prepared for the Office of the Secretary of Defense in 2009, ‘Terrorists are not particularly impoverished, uneducated, or afflicted by mental disease. Demographically, their most important characteristic is normalcy (within their environment). Terrorist leaders actually tend to come from relatively privileged backgrounds.’ One of the authors of the RAND report, Darcy Noricks, also found that according to a number of academic studies, ‘Terrorists turn out to be more rather than less educated than the general population.’”

This ridiculous claim from Obama is just more of his absolute unwillingness to acknowledge the real provenance of the jihad impulse in Islamic texts and teachings. It will result in taxpayer dollars by the hundreds of millions being showered upon the Nigerian government and factions deemed “moderate” in Syria, whatever the evidence to the contrary. Those millions will go for villas and BMWs for corrupt officials, while the forces of the global jihad continue to advance.

“Obama says climate change threatens US national security,” by Nick Allen, Telegraph, May 20, 2015:
President Barack Obama has called climate change a "serious threat" to America's national security and linked extreme weather to the rise of Boko Haram and the outbreak of war in Syria.

Mr Obama said rising sea levels could undermine the effectiveness of US forces, jeopardise its military bases around the world and cost hundreds of billions of dollars. He accused those who deny climate change exists of a "dereliction of duty".

Speaking to graduates at the US Coast Guard Academy in Connecticut, he said: "I'm here today to say that climate change constitutes a serious threat to global security, an immediate threat to our national security.

"It will impact how our military defends our country. We need to act and we need to act now. Denying it or refusing to deal with it endangers our national security. It undermines the readiness of our forces."

He added: "I know there are some folks back in Washington who refuse to admit that climate change is real. Politicians who say they care about military readiness need to care about this as well.

"I understand climate change did not cause the conflicts we see around the world, yet what we also know is that severe drought helped to create the instability in Nigeria that was exploited by the terrorist group Boko Haram.

"It's now believed that drought and crop failures and high food prices helped fuel the early unrest in Syria, which descended into civil war in the heart of the Middle East."

Tackling climate change has become one of the main aims for Mr Obama before he leaves office and he intends it to be a major part of his legacy.

In March he pledged to reduce carbon emissions in the US by 28 per cent from 2005 levels over the next decade.

In the face of Republican opposition he is now attempting to frame the debate over climate change not just as an environmental issue, but one of national security and the future of the economy.

Mr Obama said: "In Miami and Charleston streets now flood at high tide. Along our coasts, thousands of miles of highways, roads, railways and energy facilities are vulnerable.

"It is estimated that a further increase in sea level of one foot - just one foot - by the end of this century could cost our nation $200 billion.

"Climate change, especially rising seas, is a threat to our homeland security, our economy, infrastructure, and the safety and health of the American people."

Mr Obama compared his Republican opponents to a ship's captain failing to take action as they headed toward rocks.

He said: "You don’t sit back, you take steps to protect your ship. Anything less is a dereliction of duty. The same is true for climate change."

In a report this week the White House called climate change an "accelerant of instability around the world” which would cause food and water shortages and increase global tensions.

It also said rising sea levels in the Arctic would lead to more humanitarian crises and US military missions there.

The US Department of Defence is studying the effect that climate change will have on its 7,000 bases and installations.

An increase in extreme weather events would also strain the resources the National Guard, Mr Obama said.

He told the Coast Guard cadets: "You are part of the first generation of officers to begin your service in a world where the effects of climate change are so clearly upon us.

"Climate change will shape how every one of our services plan, operate, train, equip, and protect their infrastructure, today and for the long term."


Obama laments 'distorted impression' of Muslims

By Ben Kamisar
June 23, 2015, 07:29 am
The Hill

President Obama stressed religious tolerance during an Iftar dinner to celebrate the Muslim holiday of Ramadan, linking the murders of nine black Christians in South Carolina with the killings of three Muslims in North Carolina earlier this year.

"Our prayers remain with Charleston and Mother Emanuel church," Obama said Monday night, using the nickname of the historically black church in Charleston where nine people were killed Wednesday night after a gunman opened fire in a Bible study.

"As Americans, we insist that nobody should be targeted because of who they are, or what they look like, who they love, how they worship. We stand united against these hateful acts."

Obama lamented the "distorted impression" that many Americans have of Muslims.

"Here in America, many people personally don’t know someone who is Muslim. They mostly hear about Muslims in the news — and that can obviously lead to a very distorted impression," Obama said.

He shared the story of protesters outside of an Arizona mosque who held up "offensive signs against Islam and Muslims. But when the congregants invited the protesters in to pray, some completely changed their minds.

"One demonstrator, who accepted the invitation later, described how the experience changed him; how he finally saw the Muslim American community for what it is — peaceful and welcoming," Obama said.

"That’s what can happen when we stop yelling and start listening. That’s why it’s so important always to lift up the stories and voices of proud Americans who are contributing to our country every day."

Samantha Elauf, the woman at the center of the recent Supreme Court case about whether she could where a hijab as an Abercrombie & Fitch employee, attended the White House dinner. Elauf won her case in early June by an 8-1 vote.


Obama Administration Threatened Nigeria with Sanctions in 2013 for Fighting Boko Haram

By Fred Dardick
Wednesday, May 14, 2014
Canada Free Press

Hillary Clinton wasn’t the only Obama administration official who went to bat for Boko Haram over the past few years.

Soon after John Kerry took over as Secretary of State, the U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria, Terence P. McCulley, accused the Nigerian government of butchery during a confrontation with Boko Haram terrorists in Baga, a Nigerian town on the shores of Lake Chad, and in May 2013 threatened to withdraw U.S. military aid from the West African nation.

Boko Haram militants attacked a Nigerian military outpost in April 2013 outside Baga, killing one soldier. Following the three-day battle human rights activists, including the George Soros-funded and liberal aligned Human Rights Watch, which is not exactly known for its impartiality when it comes to reporting on Islamic issues, claimed the Nigerian military wantonly slaughtered 183 civilians and burned down over 2,000 homes and businesses.

The Nigerian government denied the claims saying the death toll and destruction had been vastly overstated by its enemies, and in fact 30 Boko Haram terrorists, 6 civilians and one soldier, had died in the fighting. Reports from the Baga clinic, which treated 193 people following the battle, but only 10 with serious injuries, seemed to back up the Nigerian government claim that no large-scale massacre had occurred.

The U.S. Nigerian Ambassador, blindly believing any Islamist sob story that crossed his path, responded in a May 2013 meeting with human rights activists by defending Boko Haram:

Mr. Terrence announced to the activists that the US congress had previously passed a law that bars the United States from rendering military assistance to any government that violates basic rights of citizens. He said the Obama led US government has therefore ceased to assist Nigeria militarily in obedience to the law.

The threat of military sanctions, and whether or not they were actually implemented, is an open question as there has been zero coverage of this issue in the mainstream media, may have had a chilling effect on Nigerian military operations against Boko Haram. Since Ambassador McCulley’s proclamation the Nigerian civilian death toll by Boko Haram Islamic militants has skyrocketed over the past year.

No wonder the Nigerian government was initially reluctant to accept U.S. assistance with finding the more than 200 Christian girls kidnapped by Boko Haram last month. Emboldening Nigeria’s Islamic terrorist enemies and having been already accused by the Obama administration of crimes against humanity for fighting militants who were responsible for hundreds of civilian deaths since 2010, they likely felt that Obama’s belated support was more a product of diplomatic CYA than actually caring about the fate of kidnapped Nigerian children.


Obama’s scrub of Muslim terms under question

By Rowan Scarborough
The Washington Times
Thursday, April 25, 2013

Before the Boston Marathon bombings, the Obama administration argued for years that there is a big difference between terrorists and the tenets of Islam.

A senior White House aide in 2009 publicly urged Washington to cease using the term “jihadist” — asserting that terrorists are simply extremists. Two years later, the White House ordered a cleansing of training materials that Islamic groups deemed offensive.

Now, some analysts are asking whether the 2009 edict and others that followed have dampened law enforcement’s appetite to thoroughly investigate terrorism suspects for fear of offending higher-ups or the American Muslim lobby.

It is not just the case of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, a radicalized jihadist whom the FBI questioned in 2011 and cleared of terrorism links. At least five Muslims have attempted mass destruction in the U.S. since 2009, undetected beforehand by law enforcement and the intelligence community:

• Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad opened fire at a military recruiting office in Little Rock, Ark., in June 2009, killing one soldier.
• Najibullah Zazi, who said he was a member of al Qaeda, tried to detonate bombs in New York City's subway in September 2009.
• Army Maj. Nadal Malik Hassan opened fire at a soldier processing center at Fort Hood, Texas, killing 13.
• Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to explode a bomb hidden in his underwear onboard a flight to Detroit in December 2009.
• Faisal Shahzad attempted to detonate a car bomb in Times Square in May 2010.

Steven Emerson runs the Investigative Project on Terrorism, which monitors a network of Islamic groups with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, whose stated goal is to impose Shariah, or Islamic law, on the world.

“Numerous experts on Islamic terrorism like myself and I had given 143 lectures at the FBI, CIA were banned from speaking to any U.S. government counterterrorism conferences,” Mr. Emerson told The Washington Times. “Instead, these agencies were ordered to invite Muslim Brotherhood front groups.”

The biggest White House push to tone down training on jihadists emerged in 2011, the same year the Russian government warned the U.S. about Tamerlan Tsarnaev, whose parents hailed from Chechnya, a hotbed of radical Islamists. Tamerlan and younger brother Dzhokhar Tsarnaev are accused of placing the two bombs that killed three and wounded more than 260 at the Boston Marathon.

Islamic backlash

In October 2011, 57 Islamic groups wrote a letter to John O. Brennan, now CIA director, but then President Obama’s chief counterterrorism adviser.

Citing news reports, the groups complained of “biased, false and highly offensive training materials about Muslims and Islam” inside the federal government’s instructional halls.

“While recent news reports have highlighted the FBI’s use of biased experts and training materials, we have learned that this problem extends far beyond the FBI and has infected other government agencies, including the U.S. Attorney’s Anti-Terrorism Advisory Councils, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and the U.S. Army,” the letter read.

Muslims objected to several training guides, such as a 2009 report produced at the Army Command and General Staff at the Fort Leavenworth School of Advanced Military Studies.

“Moderate Muslims are not exercising moderation; they are simply applying other means to accomplish the same goal of establishing global Islamic dominance,” it quoted the report as saying.

At least two of the 57 groups were listed by the Justice Department as unindicted co-conspirators and as being connected to the Muslim Brotherhood in the prosecution of a Texas charity for funding Hamas, a U.S.-designated terrorist organization. The groups are the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Islamic Society of North America.

The organizations’ letter demanded that biased trainers be disciplined, that all instructors undergo retraining and that materials deemed offensive by Muslim activists be purged.

The White House issued an edict to scrub all law enforcement, intelligence and military teachings on Islam. The FBI ended up discarding pages of information that warned about the threat from the Brotherhood.

John Guandolo, a former FBI counterterrorism agent, has spent years studying the global Muslim Brotherhood movement and its links to American Islamic groups. The FBI relies on some of them to guide its training. The political left has branded Mr. Guandolo an “Islamophobe.”

“There is no strategy in the FBI,” he told The Times. “At FBI headquarters, it is a daily fire drill. The threats come in, and they run around to deal with them and run them down. But because none of it can have anything to do with the Muslim Brotherhood’s movement in the U.S. or Islam, they never address the root cause and common investigative realities.”

Mr. Emerson, who maintains back-channel ties to law enforcement, said any slide presentation on Islamic extremism now has to be submitted to a special Justice Department panel.

He said one slide that was required to be omitted showed the famous photo of captured Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed. The photo of a disheveled and unshaven Mohammed was deemed “offensive to Islam,” Mr. Emerson said.

Political correctness

Perhaps the best-known casualty of the White House order is Army Lt. Col. Matthew Dooley, a decorated officer who taught at the Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Va. After learning of Col. Dooley’s course and its “outside the box” scenario of nuclear war, Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, the Joint Chiefs chairman, launched investigations that ended with the officer’s firing.

A briefing by Col. Dooley, whose course “Perspectives on Islam and Islamic Radicals” had been approved by his supervisors, discussed how “political correctness” prevents the military from talking about radical Islam.

“Political Correctness is killing us: How can we properly identify the enemy, analyze his weaknesses, and defeat him, if we are NEVER permitted to examine him from the most basic doctrinal level?” the briefing read.

Early in Mr. Obama’s first term, Mr. Brennan set the tone for a softer line on Islam and its links to terrorism.

In August 2009, he went to the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington to talk on the theme “A New Approach to Safeguarding Americans.”
He said the president does not “see this challenge as a fight against ‘jihadists.’

Describing terrorists in this way — using a legitimate term, jihad, meaning to purify oneself or to wage a holy struggle for a moral goal — risks giving these murderers the religious legitimacy they desperately seek but in no way deserve.”

Some analysts disagree with that interpretation, saying the Koran clearly states that jihad is a “holy war.”

Mr. Brennan and other aides preferred the title “violent extremists” over Islamic terrorists.

In 2011, Sen. Joe Lieberman, Connecticut independent, was among those in Congress who disliked the fuzzy term.

“They say our enemy is violent extremism,” Mr. Lieberman said. “It’s not. It’s not animal rights extremists or white supremacy extremists. It’s Islamic extremism.”

Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida Republican, told Fox News this week that the administration will not recognize the terrorists for what they are — radicalized Islamists.

“My problem with this administration is they refuse to acknowledge the existence of this kind of terrorism,” Mr. Rubio said.

He noted that after the Sept. 11 terrorist attack on the U.S. diplomatic complex in Benghazi, Libya, the White House refused to call it terrorism and blamed it on everyday demonstrators.

“And even now, irrespective of whether [the Tsarnaev brothers] met with extremists or not when they went to Russia, the bottom line is they were radicalized and they carried out an attack because of that ideology,” Mr. Rubio said. “This is the emerging face of terrorism against the United States by radical Islamists, and we have to have security systems that recognize that and can deal with that because the No. 1 job of the federal government is to secure our national security.”


Obama’s ‘Alert Observation’ of Anti-Christian Violence Must End

By Benjamin Weinthal
August 21, 2012 .

As Nina Shea discussed below, Pakistani authorities have incarcerated a 12-year-old Christian girl, who is believed to suffer from Down’s syndrome, because she allegedly burned pages of the Koran. The Washington Post reported that “as many as 600 Christians have fled their colony bordering the capital, fearing for their lives, officials said, after a mob last week called for the child to be burned to death as a blasphemer.”

Spectacular levels of radical-Islamic cleansing of Middle Eastern and Southeast Asian Christian communities continues unabated — not only in Pakistan — but in Egypt, the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, Saudi Arabia, and the Islamic Republic of Iran, to name just a few Muslim-majority countries where Islamists are lashing out at Christians.

Sadly, the lethal Christophobia unfolding in the Middle East is viewed passively and from the sidelines by the Obama administration. This week’s issue of the French news weekly L’Express neatly captures the Obama administration’s poorly chosen posture toward the Mideast, including Iran’s jingoism and its drive to develop nuclear weapons: “Everything takes place as if the White House has the role of alert observer,” noted the magazine.

A telling example of the “alert observation” is occurring in Egypt. Coptic Christians “are deeply anxious about what the future holds for them and their country,” Secretary of State Hilary Clinton remarked in late July. Then less than a week later, a mob of violent Muslims forcibly evicted the town of Dahshour’s entire Christian community (an estimated 100 Christian families fled).

Alertly observing the dire situation of the Middle East’s Christians has been the go-to tactic for the Obama administration. It is a foreign policy rooted in soggy political realism that produces no biting punitive measures for authoritarian regimes in Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Gaza, as well as Mohammed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood’s increasingly anti-Western government in Egypt. Members of Gaza’s tiny Christian population of 2,500 have complained about its members being subjected to kidnappings and forced conversions to Islam.

Iran’s mullahs are serial persecutors of Christians. The country’s clerical rulers are slated to cart Iranian pastor Youcef Nadarkhani back into court on September 8. His crime: challenging the mandatory Islamic education of his young children and attempting to register a home-based church. To the credit of the Washington-based American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) and its campaign to free Pastor Nadarkhani, the Iranian authorities have thus far backpedaled from imposing the death penalty on him. ACLJ, which seeks to promote religious freedom, launched a Twitter micro-blog campaign, resulting in nearly 3 million tweets a day with the hashtag #TweetforYoucef.

The U.S. government and its Western allies can, however, do much more. Consider the recommendations of Ben Cohen and Father Keith Roderick, the Episcopal priest for the Diocese of Springfield, Ill., in their late-July Wall Street Journal op-ed. “Some of these options might include linking commerce and financial assistance to a demonstrable commitment to religious freedom,” wrote Cohen and Roderick, who also suggested enhanced security measures for churches that are faced with Islamic terror.

The Obama administration’s “alert observation” policy in the Middle East has not sufficed to advance or even defend religious freedom in the region. When will Obama scrap his defective policy regarding the dire situation of Middle East Christians and finally confront anti-Christian regimes?

— Benjamin Weinthal is a Berlin-based fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. He reports on the plight of Middle East Christians for the Jerusalem Post.


Obama Administration's War on Persecuted Christians

FRIDAY, 03 AUGUST 2012
RIGHT SIDE NEWS

The Obama administration's support for its Islamist allies means a lack of U.S. support for their enemies or, more properly, victims—the Christian and other non-Muslim minorities of the Muslim world.

Consider the many recent proofs:
According to Pete Winn of CNS:

The U.S. State Department removed the sections covering religious freedom from the Country Reports on Human Rights that it released on May 24, three months past the statutory deadline Congress set for the release of these reports. The new human rights reports—purged of the sections that discuss the status of religious freedom in each of the countries covered—are also the human rights reports that include the period that covered the Arab Spring and its aftermath.

Thus, the reports do not provide in-depth coverage of what has happened to Christians and other religious minorities in predominantly Muslim countries in the Middle East that saw the rise of revolutionary movements in 2011 in which Islamist forces played an instrumental role. For the first time ever, the State Department simply eliminated the section of religious freedom in its reports covering 2011… (emphasis added).

The CNS report goes on to quote several U.S. officials questioning the motives of the Obama administration. Former U.S. diplomat Thomas Farr said that he has "observed during the three-and-a-half years of the Obama administration that the issue of religious freedom has been distinctly downplayed." Leonard Leo, former chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, said "to have pulled religious freedom out of it [the report] means that fewer people will obtain information," so that "you don't have the whole picture."

It's not the first time the administration has suppressed knowledge concerning the suffering of religious minorities under Islam. Earlier it suppressed knowledge concerning Islam itself (see here for a surreal example of the effects of such censorship).

In "Obama Overlooks Christian Persecution," James Walsh gives more examples of State Department indifference "regarding the New Years' murders of Coptic Christians in Egypt and the ravaging of a cathedral," including how the State Department "refused to list Egypt as 'a country of particular concern,' even as Christians and others were being murdered, churches destroyed, and girls kidnapped and forced to convert to Islam. "

And the evidence keeps mounting. Legislation to create a special envoy for religious minorities in the Near East and South Central Asia—legislation that, in the words of the Washington Post, "passed the House by a huge margin," has been stalled by Sen. James Webb, D-Va.:

In a letter sent to Webb Wednesday night, Rep. Frank Wolf [R-Va, who introduced the envoy bill] said he "cannot understand why" the hold had been placed on a bill that might help Coptic Christians and other groups "who face daily persecution, hardship, violence, instability and even death."

Yet the ultimate source of opposition is the State Department. The Post continues:

Webb spokesman Will Jenkins explained the hold by saying that "after considering the legislation, Senator Webb asked the State Department for its analysis." In a position paper issued in response, State Department officials said "we oppose the bill as it infringes on the Secretary's [Hillary Clinton's] flexibility to make appropriate staffing decisions," and suggested the duties of Wolf's proposed envoy would overlap with several existing positions. "The new special envoy position is unnecessary, duplicative, and likely counterproductive," the State Department said (emphasis added).

But as Wolf explained in his letter: "If I believed that religious minorities, especially in these strategic regions, were getting the attention warranted at the State Department, I would cease in pressing for passage of this legislation. Sadly, that is far from being the case. We must act now…. Time is running out."

Much of this was discussed during Coptic Solidarity's third annual conference in Washington D.C. last month, which I participated in, and which featured many politicians and lawmakers—including the U.K.'s Lord Alton, Senator Roy Blunt, Congressman Trent Franks, Congressman Joseph Pitts, and Frank Wolf himself. As Coptic Solidarity's summary report puts it, "All policy makers voiced strong support to the Copts…. Some policy makers raised concerns about the current U.S. Administration's overtures towards religious extremists."

There was little doubt among the speakers that, while Webb is the front man, Hillary Clinton—who was named often—is ultimately behind the opposition to the bill. (Videos of all speakers can be accessed here; for information on the envoy bill and how to contact Webb's office, click here).

Even those invited to speak about matters outside of Egypt, such as Nigerian lawyer and activist Emmanuel Ogebe, wondered at Obama's position that the ongoing massacres of Christians have nothing to do with religion. After describing the sheer carnage of thousands of Christians at the hands of Muslim militants, lamented that Obama's response was to pressure the Nigerian president to make more concessions, including by creating more mosques (the very places that "radicalize" Muslims against infidel Christians).

Indeed, while the administration vocally condemned vandal attacks on mosques in the West Bank (where no Muslims died), it had nothing to say when Islamic terrorists bombed Nigerian churches on Easter Sunday, killing some 50 Christians and wounding hundreds. And when the Egyptian military indiscriminately massacred dozens of unarmed Christians for protesting the nonstop attacks on their churches, all the White House could say is, "Now is a time for restraint on all sides"—as if Egypt's beleaguered Christian minority needs to "restrain" itself against the nation's military, a military that intentionally ran armored vehicles over them at Maspero.

In light of all this, naturally the Obama administration, in the guise of the State Department, would oppose a bill to create an envoy who will only expose more religious persecution that the administration will have to suppress or obfuscate?

Bottom line: In its attempts to empower its Islamist allies, the current U.S. administration has taken up their cause by waging a war of silence on their despised enemies—the Christians and other minorities of the Islamic world.


Obama’s Disastrous Islamist Outreach

Posted By Joseph Klein
January 6, 2012
Frontpage Magazine

For three years, Barack Obama’s engagement policy with Islamists, most notably in Iran, has proven dangerous. The Iranian regime exploited Obama’s show of weakness by moving ahead aggressively with its nuclear weapon program. Now the Obama administration is doubling down on its disastrous engagement policy. It is serving as the midwife to the takeover of Egypt by the Muslim Brotherhood and of Afghanistan by the Taliban. And there is a distressing link between the two.

A front page article in the New York Times on January 5th reported what has been obvious since Obama took office. The administration has sought to “forge close ties” with the Muslim Brotherhood – “an organization once viewed as irreconcilably opposed to United States interests.”Senator John Kerry, the Massachusetts Democrat who is chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and recently joined with the ambassador to Egypt, Anne W. Patterson, for a meeting with top leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood’s political party, compared the Obama administration’s outreach to President Ronald Reagan’s arms negotiations with the Soviet Union. “The United States needs to deal with the new reality,” Senator Kerry said. “And it needs to step up its game.”

That is a ridiculous analogy. Reagan negotiated with the Soviet Union, but never waivered from his belief that the Soviet Union was an evil empire whose ideology must be defeated.  The Obama administration’s outreach to the Muslim Brotherhood is based on its mistaken belief that it has reformed in a way that brings it much closer to the Western model of a pluralistic party committed to individual freedoms.

To the contrary, when push comes to shove, the Muslim Brotherhood’s dominance of the civil government in Egypt, by virtue of its parliamentary election victories, will mean the imposition of sharia law and jihad against infidels. Nothing the Obama administration is trying to do through its aggressive overtures, including recent high-level meetings with Muslim Brotherhood officials, will change that fact.  Jihad is embedded in its history, as evidenced by the violent Islamic jihadist organizations such as Hamas that it spawned. And let’s not forget that it was the Muslim Brotherhood that gave Osama bin Laden’s former deputy and current leader of al Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahiri, his start.

Jihad remains in the Muslim Brotherhood’s DNA. Its motto includes the words: “Jihad is our way. Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.” The Brotherhood’s new offices are emblazoned with its emblem of crossed swords.

The Obama administration’s ostensible rationale for engaging with the Muslim Brotherhood is that it is simply bowing to political reality. Based on the results of Egyptian parliamentary elections so far, the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party looks set to play a dominant role in Egypt’s new parliament and in the civil government to which Obama administration officials are pressing Egypt’s military to hand over the reins of power. But, in fact, the Obama administration is not simply being reactive. It helped bring about what is now unfolding in Egypt by throwing Egyptian president Mubarak under the bus and lending its hand to legitimize the false image of the Muslim Brotherhood as some sort of alternative moderate advocate of peace, pluralistic democracy and freedom for all Egyptians.

At the same time, in order to find a face-saving way out of the quagmire in Afghanistan in which the Obama administration finds itself after escalating the war there while simultaneously announcing a timetable for withdrawal, the administration is pursuing talks with the Taliban. It is using an untrustworthy Muslim Brotherhood connection to do so.

According to a report appearing in the Indian newspaper Hindu, diplomatic sources have said that Yusuf al-Qaradawi, who is regarded as the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, has emerged as a key mediator in secret talks between the U.S. and the Taliban:

Mr. al-Qaradawi helped draw a road map for a deal between the Taliban and the United States, aimed at giving the superpower a face-saving political settlement ahead of its planned withdrawal from Afghanistan which is due to begin in 2014.

In return for the release of prisoners still held by the United States at Guantanamo Bay, the lifting of United Nations sanctions on its leadership and its recognition as a legitimate political group, the Taliban was expected to agree to sever its links to transnational organisations like al-Qaeda, end violence and eventually share power with the Afghan government.

But what can the Taliban negotiators really deliver, even if it were serious in wanting to reach a peaceful settlement? There is no indication that these negotiators are in a position to turn over the Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar and his inner circle, who harbored al Qaeda when the Taliban was in control of Afghanistan. Nor will they be able to diffuse the growing power of the new generation of Taliban commanders ideologically committed to al-Qaeda’s vision.

The Obama administration’s idea of negotiations is to consider releasing Taliban detainees who are likely to return to jihad against U.S. forces without even any commitment reported to date that the Taliban would return the U.S. soldier it kidnapped. The only concrete step the Taliban negotiators have reportedly agreed to undertake in the short term is to set up an office in Qatar for talks.

It’s bad enough that the Obama administration is even considering talks on such terms – a prescription for appeasement. The fact that the Obama administration is foolish enough to trust al-Qaradawi as an intermediary with the Taliban is mind-boggling. Have they not read what this jihadist has been preaching?

The Muslim Brotherhood’s spiritual leader’s call for jihad extends not only to the conquest of Israel and the killing of Jews. It includes the conquest of Europe and beyond.

In 2003 al-Qaradawi issued a fatwa declaring that Islam will return to Europe as a victorious conqueror after having been expelled twice. This time it will not be conquest by the sword, but by preaching and spreading [Islamic] ideology […] The future belongs to Islam […] The spread of Islam until it conquers the entire world and includes both East and West marks the beginning of the return of the Islamic Caliphate [.]

A 2009 State Department cable, published by WikiLeaks, quoted a sermon by al-Qaradawi in which he condemned Jews for spreading “corruption in the land” and called for “the revenge of Allah” upon them. And he didn’t spare the United States. He condemned the United States for acting “like a god in this world” and cautioned the U.S. and the West that “according to the law of Allah, they should collapse.”

Yet this is the man in whom the Obama administration places its trust to help mediate a peace with the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Just as the Obama administration trusts al-Qaradawi, the spiritual guide for the Muslim Brotherhood, to help it escape the mess in Afghanistan, the Obama administration has come to believe in the good intentions of the Muslim Brotherhood itself in how it plans to govern in Egypt.


It’s Not Workplace Violence, It’s Islam

Posted by Ben Shapiro on Dec 12th, 2011
Frontpagemag.com

This week, the Obama Administration made an announcement regarding the attack on Fort Hood in 2009.  In that incident, you’ll recall, gentle Muslim psychiatrist Maj.

Nidal Hasan – who had apparently been taking Islamic training from gentle Muslim terrorist preacher Anwar al-Awlaki – picked up a handgun and proceeded to murder 12 soldiers (one pregnant) and one Army civilian employee; another 29 were injured.  None of the soldiers were armed.  Finally, a civilian police sergeant put Hasan down with five shots, paralyzing the gentle Muslim from the chest down.

Two years later, President Obama’s Defense Department called this incident “workplace violence.”  You know, like when you punch a guy at the water cooler for sleeping with your wife. Except you’re a Muslim and there are forty co-workers, none of whom have slept with your wife, and you’re trying to shoot them to death while shouting “Allahu Akhbar!”

There is a legitimate debate to be had regarding the terminology we use to describe Muslim terrorists.  Are they Muslims or are they Islamists?  Are they radical Muslims, or are they just normal Muslims?  Robert Spencer and Andrew McCarthy have had this debate for several weeks, most prominently at the Freedom Center Restoration Weekend.  I come down on the side that says we have no business making a distinction between Muslims and so-called Islamists, since Muslims make no such distinction themselves.  Osama Bin Laden knows more about Islam than I do.  I’ll take his word for it.

But regardless of where you come down on the question of Muslim semantics, there is no doubt that Islam must come into play when we discuss the threat of terrorism.  Labeling Fort Hood “workplace violence” is like labeling September 11 a “building collapse.”  It’s not just misleading, it’s sick.

What would drive the Obama Administration to place this absurd Orwellian label on a Muslim terrorist attack?  There are two rationales: fear and hope.

First, fear.  The Defense Department is deathly afraid of funding cuts – and with good reason, since it is clear that Democrats are far less interested in cutting Granny’s Medicare than in cutting missile defense (a position that no doubt has

Vladimir Putin grinning in his sleep).  So the military must please the left.  They’ve done that by turning the military into a social experimentation center where male sexuality is injected into barracks.  Now they’re doing it by upholding the diversity meme.  As General George Casey, the army’s top officer, said in the aftermath of the Fort Hood massacre, “Our diversity, not only in our Army, but in our country, is a strength.  And as horrific as this tragedy was, if our diversity becomes a casualty, I think that’s worse.”

Now, I’m fairly certain that the murder of pregnant women is worse than people accurately labeling Nidal Hasan a Muslim terrorist.  And I’m fairly certain that

General Casey knows that.  But General Casey also knows where his bread is buttered, and so does the entire Defense Department.

Fear is the order of the day in the Defense Department, then. And then there’s hope.  The Obama Administration hopes that by calling the Fort Hood massacre “workplace violence,” we will all accept Nidal Hasan’s presence as a member of the workplace.  He’s just the same as Sgt. Bill or Lt. Jane — he just happens to hate America and all that it stands for.  Tomayto, tomahto.

What’s the point of this little fiction?  By including Hasan in the “workplace,” the Obama Administration hopes to convince Muslims around the world that we want them as part of our global workplace.  For the love of Allah, if they can see that we’ll accept even their most militant members into our military, won’t they be able to see that we can all live together in peace?

And thus, the Obama Administration’s idiotic hope combines with the military’s deathly fear to rewrite history.  Those who were killed at Fort Hood become random victims of violence rather than martyrs in the clash of civilizations (whereas for Muslims, Hasan is already a martyr in the clash of civilizations).  Hasan’s “Allahu Akhbar” becomes a delightfully exotic version of “going postal,” or another incident of a disturbed soldier “going Rambo.”

While we play pattycake with the terminology of Islamic murder, Muslims around the world have no such qualms.  In fact, they label everything we do Western imperialism.  Protecting Muslims from the Taliban?  Western imperialism.  Saving Kuwait from Saddam Hussein?  Western imperialism.  Lady Gaga?  Western imperialism.

So, who’s destined to win this fight – the side that insists that Muslim murder is “workplace violence,” or the side that insists that soldierly workplace violence in defense of Muslims is murder of Muslims?  It’s a pretty safe bet that the side that sees “Allahu Akhbar” as a call to diversity training will end up on the wrong side of history.


Obama Administration Bans the Truth About Islam and Jihad

Posted by Robert Spencer on Oct 24th, 2011
Frontpage.com

It has been a long time coming, but the Obama Administration has now officially banned the truth. Deputy U.S. Attorney General James Cole declared Wednesday at a conference in Washington that he had “recently directed all components of the Department of Justice to re-evaluate their training efforts in a range of areas, from community outreach to national security.” This “reevaluation” will remove all references to Islam in connection with any examination of Islamic jihad terror activity. The Obama Administration has now placed off-limits any investigation of the beliefs, motives and goals of jihad terrorists.

Dwight C. Holton, former U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon, emphasized that training materials for the FBI would be purged of everything politically incorrect: “I want to be perfectly clear about this: training materials that portray Islam as a religion of violence or with a tendency towards violence are wrong, they are offensive, and they are contrary to everything that this president, this attorney general and Department of Justice stands for. They will not be tolerated.”

Holton said that he had spoken with Attorney General Eric Holder about FBI training materials that Holton claimed were “egregiously false,” and that Holder “is firmly committed to making sure that this is over….we’re going to fix it.” Holton said that this “fix” was particularly urgent because the rejected training materials “pose a significant threat to national security, because they play into the false narrative propagated by terrorists that the United States is at war with Islam.”

Cole suggested that these training materials had done damage domestically as well: “One of the many, tragic legacies of 9/11 has been an increase in prejudice, discrimination and hatred directed against persons of the Muslim and Sikh faiths and those who are, or who are mistakenly perceived to be, of Arab or South Asian descent. Some have wrongly sought to blame the horror of 9/11 on Arab-American, Muslim American, Sikh-American and South Asian American communities. It has led to attacks against places of worship and other hate crimes, to job discrimination, and to the tragic harassment of children in our schools.”

After sketching out this horror tale, Cole declared: “We must never allow our sorrow and anger at the senseless attack of 9/11 to blind us to the great gift of our diversity.” And this, he said, must involve a rejection of the stereotyping of Muslims: “All of us must reject any suggestion that every Muslim is a terrorist or that every terrorist is a Muslim.  As we have seen time and again – from the Oklahoma City bombing to the recent attacks in Oslo, Norway – no religion or ethnicity has a monopoly on terror.” It was George Bush, he said, who after 9/11 “made clear to the nation that these terrorist acts were committed by individuals who distort the peaceful religion of Islam,” and now all government analysis of jihad terror would reflect that perspective.

Of course, the controversial training materials did not really claim that all Muslims are terrorists or that all terrorists are Muslims, and it is noteworthy that Cole had to resort to dismissive caricatures to make his point. For in taking this course, the Obama Administration is bowing to pressure from the Hamas-linked Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and other Islamic advocacy groups. In a Los Angeles Times op-ed that appeared on the same day as the conference in Washington, Salam al-Marayati of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) roundly criticized existing training materials about jihad terror and demanded that the FBI and the Justice Department “issue a clear and unequivocal apology to the Muslim American community; establish a thorough and transparent vetting process in selecting its trainers and materials; invite experts who have no animosity toward any religion to conduct training about any religious community to law enforcement.”

Al-Marayati complained that training materials reflected “bigoted and inflammatory views on Muslims, including claims that ‘devout’ Muslims are more prone toward violence, that Islam aims to ‘transform a country’s culture into 7th century Arabian ways,’ that Islamic charitable giving is a ‘funding mechanism for combat’ and that the prophet Muhammad was a ‘violent cult leader.’”

In this al-Marayati was simply repeating talking points from an “expose” of FBI training materials by hard-Left journalist Spencer Ackerman in Wired, who has been conducting a campaign for some time to get the bureau to purge its terrorism training seminars of any hint of the truth about the global jihad and Islamic supremacism. Yet like virtually all Leftist and Islamic supremacist critics of anti-jihad and anti-terror material, Ackerman and al-Marayati take for granted that such assertions are false, without bothering to explain how or why. Apparently they believe that their falsity is so self-evident as to require no demonstration; unfortunately, however, there is considerable evidence that they are true, and that in banning such materials, the Obama Administration has essentially banned the truth.

Are “‘devout’ Muslims are more prone toward violence”? While certainly not all devout Muslims are terrorists, virtually all Islamic terrorists are devout Muslims. In recent years, not only Osama bin Laden but also devout Muslims such as Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, would-be Times Square bomber Feisal Shahzad, Arkansas jihad murderer Abdulhakim Muhammad, and other jihad terror plotters such as Khalid Aldawsari, Baitullah Mehsud, and Roshonara Choudhry, among many others, reference Islamic teachings to justify violence against unbelievers. Just recently, Detroit underwear bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab declared in court that Muslims should only be judged by the Qur’an.

Is the “Islamic charitable giving” a “‘funding mechanism for combat’”? If not, one wonders why so many Islamic charities in the United States and around the world have been shut down for funding terrorism, including what was once the largest Islamic charity in the United States, the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), as well as the Global Relief Foundation (GRF), the Benevolence International Foundation (BIF), and many others.

Was Muhammad a “violent cult leader”? Certainly one definition of a cult is that members are not free to opt out if they choose to do so – and it was Muhammad who enunciated Islam’s notorious death penalty for apostasy by saying, “Whoever changes his Islamic religion, then kill him.” (Bukhari 9.84.57). Also, there are several celebrated incidents in which Muhammad lashed out violently against his opponents, ordering the murder of several people for the crime of making fun of him — including the poet Abu Afak, who was over one hundred years old, and the poetess Asma bint Marwan. Abu Afak was killed in his sleep, in response to Muhammad’s question, “Who will avenge me on this scoundrel?” Similarly, Muhammad on another occasion cried out, “Will no one rid me of this daughter of Marwan?” One of his followers, Umayr ibn Adi, went to her house that night, where he found her sleeping next to her children. The youngest, a nursing babe, was in her arms. But that didn’t stop Umayr from murdering her and the baby as well. Muhammad commended him: “You have done a great service to Allah and His Messenger, Umayr!” (Ibn Ishaq, 674-676).

Al-Marayati’s demand that the FBI and Justice Department “invite experts who have no animosity toward any religion to conduct training about any religious community to law enforcement” is at the heart of this entire affair, and illustrates the assumptions upon which the Obama Administration is now proceeding. For years Islamic advocacy groups like MPAC and Hamas-linked CAIR have asserted loudly and often that telling the truth about Islam’s doctrines of jihad warfare and supremacism constituted “hatred,” and endangered innocent Muslims. Hamas-linked CAIR has trumpeted and even fabricated hate crimes against Muslims in order to exaggerate this perception of Muslim victimhood.

The entire premise of all this, however, is false. The now-banned FBI training materials were not written out of hatred for Muslims. They were put together in order to give agents an accurate picture of the beliefs and perspectives of jihad terrorists. It is unfortunate but true that the Qur’an and Sunnah do contain doctrines of warfare and exhortations to make war against and subjugate infidels (cf. Qur’an 2:191; 4:89; 9:5; 9:29; 47:4, etc.), and it is not an act of “hatred” to point this out, or even to scrutinize the Muslim community in the U.S. in order to try to determine its view of these texts and teachings. The only people who are genuinely threatened by such scrutiny are those who wish jihad terrorism to be able to proceed unhindered.

And there’s the rub: in banning the truth about Islam and jihad, the Obama Administration has opened the door for increased jihad terror activity in the United States. Agents who do not understand the threat they face and are constantly surprised by the places where that threat is coming from will be powerless to stop this jihad activity. And the nation will reap the whirlwind.


Dancing with Arafat's Ghost

May 20, 2011
War Stories
By Oliver North

Washington, D.C. -- On Thursday, President Barack Obama went to the State Department to "mark a new chapter in American diplomacy." The president's handlers boldly billed his lengthy address "A Moment of Opportunity" for the Middle East. It was neither. Instead, he delivered a na´ve, revisionist lecture that was sufficiently utopian and self-centered to have been drafted by Jimmy Carter. Unfortunately, he also demanded major concessions from the only democracy in the Middle East and America's most steadfast ally in the region, Israel.

To no one's surprise, Obama alluded -- for the 12th time in two weeks -- to the death of Usama bin Laden and cleverly described the terror kingpin's demise, the withdrawal of American troops from Iraq and the U.S. drawdown in Afghanistan, to be part of his grand design for the Middle East. After naming a litany of places where "the shouts of human dignity" and "self determination are being heard" -- including Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Syria and Libya -- he staked his claim: "two years ago in Cairo I began to broaden our engagement based upon mutual interests and mutual respect." Apparently that mutual respect extends to everyone in the region except the Israelis.

In his lecture, the president asserted "the events of the past six months show us that strategies of repression and diversion won't work anymore" because satellite television, the Internet, cell phones and social networks "allow young people to connect and organize like never before." He says "the United States opposes the use of violence and repression against the people of the region." Yet repression and violence seem to be working just fine for the theocrats in Tehran and their proxies, Bashar Assad in Damascus and Hezbollah in South Lebanon.

Sadly, the people of Lebanon didn't even warrant an honorable mention in the remarks. He did devote 11 words to the violent suppression of Coptic Christians in Egypt, but ignored the destruction of Maronite Christian churches in the Levant and Greek Orthodox places of worship and synagogues throughout the region.

Obama asks us to "remember that the first peaceful protests were on the streets of Tehran, where the government brutalized women and men, and threw innocent people into jail." Are we therefore supposed to forget the days of stunning silence from the White House as these events unfolded?

The intellectual disconnects between rhetoric and reality don't stop there. When our commander in chief first announced U.S. "participation" in the "NATO-led coalition" to impose a no fly-zone over Libya on March 18, we were told it was a "humanitarian" operation. On Thursday, he claimed that "in Libya we saw the prospect of imminent massacre" and had we not acted, "thousands would have been killed." Though nobody has an accurate "body count," that certainly seems to be what's happening right now along the Barbary Coast and in Syria as well.

On Thursday, he said, "We have learned from our experience in Iraq just how costly and difficult it is to impose regime change by force -- no matter how well intended." Yet, ironically, the only example Obama proffers for "the promise of a multi-ethnic, multi-sectarian democracy," the only place where he says "people have rejected the perils of political violence for a democratic process, even as they have taken full responsibility for their own security," is Iraq! Who loaded these words into the Teleprompter?

All of this was preamble for the big news the O-Team wanted to make in Thursday's speech. After obfuscating history, mangling the record, and offering American tax dollars to relieve debts and "finance infrastructure and job creation" in the Middle East and North Africa, Obama dropped the hammer on Israel.

Other presidents, going back to Jimmy Carter, have called for a "two-state solution" to the "Israeli-Palestinian conflict." In 2004, President George W. Bush supported a Palestinian state but acknowledged "it is unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final status negotiations will be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949." On Thursday, Obama ditched these assurances and made an unprecedented demand: Israel must surrender territory crucial to its very existence.

For those who do not have a map in front of them, Obama's insistence that "the borders of Israel and Palestine should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps" means at its narrowest point the country would be only 8 miles wide and utterly indefensible.

It means Israel, the only state in the region that meets the president's criteria for "self determination" - an honest judiciary; an independent media; credible political parties; free and fair elections -- must now negotiate its fate with those who want none of those things. Barack Obama has become Yasser Arafat's dream come true.

-- Oliver North is the host of "War Stories" on the Fox News Channel, the author of "American Heroes in Special Operations" and the founder and honorary chairman of Freedom Alliance, a foundation that provides college scholarships to the sons and daughters of service members killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty.

 

Islamists Slaughter Christians in Nigeria, Obama Looks the Other Way

by Anna Mahjar-Barducci

Hudson New York
May 6, 2011 at 4:30 am

Although Sharia law has existed in Northern Nigeria for a long time, it used to apply only to family matters such as divorce, inheritance and adoption. It was only in 1999 that the governor of the Nigerian Northern State of Zamfara, Alhaji Ahmed Sani, decided to apply Shari law. The governor instead wanted to go farther and to include flogging, stoning, amputation, beheading, and other precepts of Islamic law.. Ever since, the Northern Nigerian States have followed Zamfara's steps. Under the Sharia law, Nigerian women have been sentenced to death by stoning for adultery, have been forbidden to rent houses and to travel in the same vehicles as men.

African Christians are now fearing for their lives after the recent massacres in Nigeria. Large scale violence from extremist Muslims erupted in Nigeria against the Christian population soon after the results of the country's presidential elections that took place on April 16th 2011. The outburst of violence started in the north of Nigeria, which has a predominantly Muslim majority, after the victory of President Goodluck Jonathan, a Christian politician. President Jonathan defeated the other presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari, a Muslim and former Nigerian President, who was accused of having rigged the electoral process. Jonathan's victory represented a shift of power in the country to the largely Christian south.

Defeated candidate Buhari's Muslim supporters took to the streets chanting "changi, sai Buhari" ["Change must take place and only with Buhari"], and went on a rampage against the Christian supporters of President Jonathan. The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) lamented that in just a few days, over 300 churches were burnt across the country's northern states; thousands of Christian-owned homes and business were destroyed, and at least 600 Christians were killed. Relief officials estimate that at least 65,000 people have been displaced as a result of the violence, which appears to be one of the worst outbursts of sectarian violence between Muslims and Christians in the country.

The Christian Aid Mission (CAM) gives also the frightening news that, last year, more than 2,000 Christians were killed in targeted Nigerian violence -- more than in any other country in the world.

These latest Nigeria riots received virtually no attention in the international media, who were too busy following the events in Libya. The murder of 600 hundred Christians in Nigeria passed almost unnoticed. It also passed unnoticed in the eyes of the American administration that -- particularly during the Obama era -- has been rather refractory in acknowledging religious persecution in the world. The International Assyrian News agency reports that since President Obama took office, his administration has not designated a single "country of particular concern" (CPC) for violations of religious freedom. The term CPC is grounded in the 1998 International Religious Freedom Act, intended to tie America's foreign policy to the promotion of religious freedom, and which identifies any country that is a "systematic, ongoing, and egregious" violator of religious freedom.

To this end, President Clinton and President Bush had designated a number of countries as violators, but so far there has been no sign of life from President Obama or his administration. President Bill Clinton in 1999 designated Burma, China, Iran, Iraq, and Sudan as CPCs. President George W. Bush, on January 16, 2009, gave eight nations that designation — Burma, China, Eritrea, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Uzbekistan.

The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), an independent, bipartisan federal body that monitors violations of religious freedom abroad that makes recommendations to the President, recommended that the Secretary of State name Nigeria as a "country of particular concern (CPC)."

Although it is highly doubtful that the Religious Freedom Act can do a great deal to help persecuted Christians, President Obama fails in not even acknowledging the human rights violantions towards Christians in Nigeria, and in not taking action against the CPCs that have already been designated by previous Presidents. President Obama's failure to take a stand against them protect such people may violate this law -- which is a federal law -- that requires him to take specific actions, including sanctions and diplomatic protests, against any CPC found in non-compliance..

Sharia Law in Nigeria

The Nigerian newpaper, the Daily Independent, commented on the events in an article entitled, "Not Yet a Nation," which arguing that "The 97 year old project [Nigeria], started by Lord Lugard [General Governor of Nigeria from 1914 to 1919] in 1914, is far from being a finished product. The structure is still beleaguered, frequently assailed and troubled by centrifugal forces threatening to tear it apart."

However, rather than an unfinished product, Nigeria seems like a product being dismantled under the pressure of Islamic fundamentalism.

It goes without saying that Nigerian non-Muslim citizens who live in the Sharia states in the north of the country have become second-class citizens and are discriminated against by a legislative system that does not recognize the right to practice freely a chosen religion. Jamila M. Nasir, a Professor of Law, and Dean of the Faculty of Law in the University of Jos in Nigeria, writes that Sharia's law discriminates against non-Muslims and in particular against non-Muslim women. "There are varying numbers of non-Muslims in the Sharia States: cumulatively about fourteen million. About half of these are girls and women. Most are Christians of one denomination or another […] Sharia implementation will no doubt have had some impact on some of these women, particularly the ones living in the cities and large towns: for instance, early attempts in some Sharia States to enforce rules against women riding on commercial motorcycles, while they lasted, clearly affected non-Muslim women," Nasir wrote. The Nigerian professor also reported the case of Christian women who were beaten because they were riding on a motorcycle, and the case of a Christian pregnant woman who was beaten while being conveyed to the hospital.

The recent clashes that once again resulted in the killing of hundreds of Christians must therefore be viewed in the framework of the radicalization of Islamic expansion in the country. Nigeria will never be a "finished product" as long as one part of its population will be discriminated against on the basis of its religious creed.

The Nigerian issue might constitute a good opportunity to manifest America's concern for civil and religious liberties throughout the world. But denouncing Muslim violence against Christians would imply the use of a language that his administration would consider politically incorrect. Or should we call it "Islamically Incorrect"?



Critics Slam Obama, Media for 'Weak' Response to Christian Slaughter Across Muslim World

Published February 15, 2011
Foxnews.com

At least 65 Christians have been killed in attacks across the Muslim world in recent months, sparking sharp criticism from human rights groups that charge the U.S. government and media aren’t doing nearly enough to speak out against the violence.

A shooting in Egypt last month that killed a Christian man and injured five Christian women was just the latest in the series of attacks, several of which occurred around the holiday season: A New Year’s bombing at a Coptic Christian church in Alexandria, Egypt, killed 23 people and injured more than 100; Christmas Eve blasts in Nigeria killed at least 32 -- just part of a night of terror across the country that saw three other churches attacked and six worshipers killed; six perished in a Christmas Day Catholic Church bombing on the island of Jolo, in the Philippines; and a string of New Year’s Eve bombings in Iraq left two dead and at least 13 wounded.

The spate of attacks has some saying that not enough is being done. "The lack of a policy response beyond sending condolences each time a church or Christians are targeted in some horrific act of violence like in Egypt, Iraq, Nigeria etc. is absolutely bewildering," Nina Shea, director of the Hudson Institute's Center for Religious Freedom, told FoxNews.com. "This should be seen as not only a humanitarian issue, but a security issue."

Even the condolence statements have come up short, said Shea. When the Obama administration first noted an Oct. 31 church bombing in Iraq, for example, it sent “a general condolence to Iraqis that didn’t even mention the word Christian or churches -- even though it was a packed Sunday worship service for Christians that was blown up.”

That bombing, claimed by an Al Qaeda-linked organization, left 58 people dead and at least 78 wounded. It was the worst attack ever against Iraq's Christian minority.

Critics have also charged the U.S. media hasn’t done enough to publicize the plight of persecuted Christians.

CBS and ABC aired nothing on the Nigerian attacks, PBS had one "NewsHour” report, while NBC gave the story three briefs mentions on the morning of Dec. 27, according to L. Brent Bozell III, president of the Media Research Center.

"CBS Evening News" anchor Katie Couric instead found the protests against a new Islamic Center set to be built near Ground Zero to be more newsworthy, labeling the "seething hatred" against Muslims in America as one of the "most disturbing stories to surface this year" on her New Year's Eve Internet show.

That night, 11 bombs exploded near Christian homes in Baghdad, killing two people and wounding at least 13. And just minutes into the new year, the bombers in Alexandria struck. “ABC aired nothing. CBS and NBC each aired one brief anchor read," according to Bozell.
Not everyone agreed with Bozell. “Christians get massive, massive media coverage, way out of proportion to their importance,” said media analyst T.J. Walker. “This is another case of an interest group developing the media strategy of ‘working the refs’ … No matter how fair or generous your media coverage is, complain bitterly that you are being treated unfairly in the hopes of making reporters give you even more positive coverage just to avoid the headache of dealing with nonsense virulent criticism.”

But Bozell maintained stories of perceived discrimination against Muslims -- like a Florida pastor’s proposition to memorialize the 9/11 attacks with "Burn a Koran Day," or a Seattle-based cartoonist’s decision to protest Comedy Central's decision to censor an episode of "South Park" that depicted Muhammad in a bear costume -- pick up far more coverage by comparison.

"It’s appalling that you’ve got a worldwide assault on Christianity in place, where every week there’s a reported attack on some Christian church somewhere by Muslim fanatics and no one’s covering it," Bozell said. "…but one idiot in Florida threatens to burn a Koran and everyone’s talking about."

Included in that everyone was Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

"I am heartened by the clear, unequivocal condemnation of this disrespectful, disgraceful act that has come from American religious leaders of all faiths," Clinton said about "Burn a Koran Day" at a Sept. 8 dinner in observance of the Muslim holiday Iftar. "It’s regrettable that a pastor in Gainesville, Fla., with a church of no more than 50 people can make this outrageous and distressful, disgraceful plan and get the world’s attention," she said the same day, at a Council on Foreign Relations event.

But some argued the Florida pastor did a better job of getting Clinton’s attention than the string of recent attacks against Christians. While State Department spokesman Mark Toner issued a statement on December 31 condemning the New Year’s Eve violence in Iraq, and another spokesman, Phillip Crowley, noted the department was "aware of a recent string of attacks against Christians from Iraq to Egypt to Nigeria, Clinton herself did not publicly address the issue.

President Obama did, however, saying the perpetrators of the Egypt attacks "were clearly targeting Christian worshippers" and "must be brought to justice for this barbaric and heinous act." He offered "any necessary assistance to the Government of Egypt in responding to it," as well as to the Government of Nigeria in responding to its attacks.

But Shea argued these governments need pressure, and not assistance. Shea said the U.S., which provides billions of dollars in foreign aid to many of these countries, should push them to protect their Christian communities "through a combination of carrots and sticks, sanctions and incentives."

She pointed to Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini, who responded to the attacks by calling for the European Union to reduce or cut aid to countries that do not protect their Christian minorities as an example of what the U.S. leaders should be doing. The EU has yet to act on the proposal.

Graeme Bannerman, a scholar at the Middle East Institute and expert on U.S.-Arab relations, said the U.S. may be taking the smarter approach.

“Take Egypt for example. The critics do not believe the government there is doing enough; they haven’t gone after the Muslims enough; they haven’t taken the threat upon the Christian community seriously enough. But there are others who say they may have not reacted rapidly enough, but they’re certainly taking action,” Bannerman told FoxNews.com, pointing to the recent conviction and death sentence for a Muslim man who killed six Christians and a Muslim guard last year outside a Coptic church on Jan. 6, Coptic Christmas Eve.

Shea called the death sentence “unprecedented,” and said she hopes to see similarly strong action in other countries. She also warned against what might happen if these Christians minorities are wiped out.

"Christians are a moderating force in the Middle East. When they are gone, religious diversity and pluralism goes with them,” she said. “…It ultimately means there will be a setback for our own national security interests and the ability of these countries to peacefully coexist with us.”

 

Barack Hussein Obama in Indonesia: Re-writing History And Debasing “Tolerance”

By Howard Rotberghttp://www.tolerance.ca/images/vide.gif, Lawyer and writer

Tolerance.ca

Obama is at it again. First, he awarded America’s highest civilian award – the Medal of Freedom – to Mary Robinson who presided over the infamous Durban Conference of 2001, where Islamic countries were allowed to highjack a conference about racism into a hatefest against the one country in the Middle East (Israel) that has a functioning justice system protecting minority rights.

Then he went to Cairo and showed his intentions to appease radical Islam by accepting that tension between the West and Islam has had nothing to do with Muslim actions against the West but was “fed by colonialism that denied rights and opportunities to many Muslims, and a Cold War in which Muslim-majority countries were too often treated as proxies without regard to their own aspirations.”

And then he uttered the infamous words, equating the glorious tradition of justice, freedom and tolerance in America with that of totalitarian countries like Egypt, Syria, Iran, and Saudi Arabia: Obama contended that America and Muslim countries “share common principles - principles of justice and progress; tolerance and the dignity of all human beings.”

As a lawyer myself, I can tell you that the American justice system is not perfect, but I would much rather be tried for a crime in America, Israel or Canada than any of the Muslim countries. And, as a Jew, the idea that Muslim countries, most of which have ethnically cleansed themselves of Jews (and are now doing the same with Christians) share the same degree of “tolerance” as do we in the West, is, quite simply, an obscenity.

So, Obama has now visited his boyhood home of Indonesia. Granted, Indonesia does have some form of democracy, perhaps the most democracy in the Islamic world. But, once again, Obama has sought to further western submission to radical Islam by morally equating America with far lesser lights when it comes to liberal democracy. Specifically, he stated in Indonesia that the United States and Indonesia have “shared values” and that “our nations show that hundreds of millions who hold different beliefs can be united in freedom under one flag.” He claimed that in Indonesia, under its Muslim majority (87% of the population is Muslim) “people choose to worship God as they please. Islam flourishes, but so do other faiths.”

The biggest problem with these words are that they are blatantly false. The other problem is why would an American president, sworn to uphold the Constitution of the United States, travel the Islamic world, with the message that American is responsible for the Islamic sense of victimization, and that Islam is correct in the sense that the Islamic notion of democracy under Sharia law and the dictates of the Koran is equivalent to the Judeo-Christian notion of liberal democracy, based on separation of Church and State, and an emphasis on Justice. All the talk of “tolerance” in the Islamic world obviously refers to something very different to what I see as tolerance.

For let us look at Indonesia. Although the Western media does not seem too interested, there is a disturbing recent history of violence and oppression of minority religions, especially towards Christians around the time of the East Timor independence movement, and more recently towards a minority Islamic sect called Ahmadiyah.

With respect to Christian persecution, read about the atrocities in the central Indonesian area called Sulawesi and about the extremist Islamists (tolerated by authorities) called the Laskar Jihad.

The January, 1999, anti-Christian violence resulted in the death of tens of thousands. Chris Wilson documented the ethnic cleansing in North Maluku in his book Ethno-Religious Violence in Indonesia: From Soil to God. (Oxon: Routledge, 2008).

The Asian Human Rights Commission in a study released last February concluded that there is no religious freedom in Indonesia. It stated that “There is continuing concern at the distinctions made in legal documents between the six recognized religions of Islam, Protestantism, Catholicism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Confucianism, and the adverse impact on the freedom of thought, conscience and religion of people belonging to minorities, ethnic groups and indigenous peoples in Indonesia.” There are lesser rights for non-recognized religions like Judaism, or for those who accept no religion and are atheists. A blasphemy law criminalizes speech and other expression by those outside the officially recognized religions.

Read on the internet about the terrible persecution of the Ahmadiyah minority Muslim sect, which is under violent intimidation in both Indonesia and Pakistan. But of course wars between Muslim sects (such as Sunni versus Shi’a) are a continuous problem in the supposed tolerant world of Islam.

Indonesia does not recognize Israel; that is, it does not believe that Jews can live in peace in the small historic Jewish homeland, surrounded by hostile Muslim states. Israelis are not allowed to travel to Indonesia. I do not believe it has ever objected to any of the numerous statements from radical Islamist groups and states that Israel should be “wiped out”.

And so, to the American president who reserves his criticisms for Israel’s homebuilding around its historic capital of Jerusalem, there is no criticizing Indonesian Muslims, Egyptian Muslims, or Palestinian Muslims. There is only continued praise for them and insistence that Americans and Muslims share similar values. There is never a request that Muslims take responsibility for their problems, only an appeasement-like agreement that their problems would disappear if Americans and Israelis would only submit a little more to this tolerant religion of peace.

We should be very suspicious of President Obama and what this all means for the future of our children and grandchildren. We have been handed a precious legacy of freedom and we should not stand idly by, as our legacy is squandered on the alter of moral relativism and false notions of tolerance.

Howard Rotberg (www.howardrotberg.ca) is a Canadian author, whose most recent book is TOLERism: The Ideology Revealed (Mantua Books).

 

 

OBAMA, PASTOR TERRY JONES AND FREE SPEECH

By Roger Fredinburg
September 11, 2010
NewsWithViews.com

The Obama administration joined with a global cabal of anti-Christian, anti-Semitic Islamic leaders and stuck a knife in the heart of free speech today.

At first I refused to believe what I was reading and seeing on my TV.

The President of the United States of America, General Patreus, Hillary and even the Pentagons top man Robert Gates have jumped into the Koran burning fray regarding Pastor Terry Jones of the Evangelical Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville Florida.

They are trying to intimidate him into cancelling his plans to torch 200 Korans on the anniversary of 911.

Obama and his global goons are trying to convince us that by expressing himself this way, Terry Jones is causing Muslims to become violent.

Muslims around the world Murder and behead Christians and burn bibles almost daily.

How is this 1st amendment expression of outrage a threat to anyone?

Muslims are killing our troops, acting out in all parts of the planet with violence against innocent people, everyday and without any provocation.

It’s what they do…

The President and his minions, blaming Terry Jones for causing Muslim violence, while not accepting responsibility for America’s apathetic approach to global terrorism and border security, is nonsense.

It’s the Muslims, their supporters and enablers who are the real problem.

That should be the focus of the White House and the good folks in the military and the Pentagon.

Trashing the 1st Amendment will not stop Islamic violence.

Letting the Islamic loonies know that we will retaliate against violence with a force second only to Gods wrath, and meaning it and being willing to follow through, that is the only real answer.

Robert Gates, the US Defense Secretary, phoned Pastor Jones on Thursday
Night and asked him to reconsider his plans to burn Korans on Saturday, the Ninth anniversary of the September 11th attacks, because it would Endanger the lives of American and NATO troops.

Instead, he should have been on the phone to the various Muslim leaders around the world explaining what radioactive fallout precautions to take should they fail to restrain their masses of radical adherents.

What’s really sad is, over the years, we have spent trillions of dollars developing and manufacturing weapons that could reduce the Muslim threat to zero in a few micro-seconds if we only had the courage to use them.

That would save many more young American soldiers than anything Terry Jones could ever do.

We apparently lack the guts and the determination to make a real stand that would back off potential threats to America for centuries to come.

And that’s because of what President Eisenhower warned us about on the dangers of the unbridled political power of our Military Industrial Complex.

Taxpayers should be angry about our spending billons of dollars a month in research and development of weapons that will never go to production and will never save a single American life.

The churches web site was yanked (clearly from influences in the White House) and by the decision at the San Antonio, Texas-based web hosting firm Rackspace.
Dan Goodgame, spokesman for Rackspace, said the evangelical Dove World Outreach Center church had, "violated the Offensive Content section of its Acceptable Use policy."
The policy forbids content or links to material that is "excessively violent, incites violence, threatens violence, or contains harassing content or hate speech; and creates a risk to a person's safety or health, creates a risk to public safety or health, compromises national security, or interferes with a investigation by law enforcement."

That means, anyone of us, if accused by big brother of being a threat, can have our voices silenced for no reason and without due process.

Does that sound like the American thing to do?

The churches plans were stalled, at least temporarily after a local Muslim Imam (I leave his name out on purpose) apparently lied to Pastor Jones suggesting the disputed New York Mosque recently in the news would move it’s location away from ground zero, if he would cancel the Koran burning event.

Pastor Jones set the deadline as part of his on-again, off-again threat to burn 200 Korans on Saturday's anniversary of the September 11 attacks.

Without saying what the ultimatum was or whether his Florida church would go ahead with the burning, Pastor Jones and a fellow evangelical leader K.A Paul gave Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf two hours to contact them with an answer.

While I personally would not burn Korans in protest, I do appreciate the 1st amendment protections afforded all Americans.

I think Pastor Jones has exposed a dangerous attitude in the leadership of this country that is leading us towards criminalizing free speech in America.

Forget whether you agree with Jones or not.

Ask yourself who is the real threat… Is it Terry Jones?

Is he threatening anyone?

Who is it rioting in the streets and committing violent acts all over the world?

Who is the real danger?

Is it Terry Jones, who has a constitutional right to express his views and openly show his disgust for Islam?

Or is it the Muslims Jones exposes in his book “The Koran is of the Devil” who are the true evil-doers.

Like Obama did in Arizona, taking the side of drug cartels against his own people, President Obama has also rallied the troops against free speech and is working to placate these 7th century Muslim troglodytes and side with radical Muslims against a small church of 50 people in Gainesville Florida.

It’s despicable, they take an oath to defend the constitution, not condemn it.

I hope my assessment is wrong, but it feels like we have learned a really frightening lesson that, in time, could terminally damage this great land.

Is the lesson that Americans, in order to get what we want from our leaders, should turn to threats of violence?

Must we throw child like tantrums backed up with violent acts to be heard?

If we want to be “respected” by the people who represent us or work for us in government, should we be willing to murder, behead and stone to death folks who disagree with us?

Is that where we need to go?

It sure as heck seems to work for the Islam-a-bobs out there.

Have you been wondering why our leaders avoid answering to the people?

They aren’t afraid of us… (Hopefully after the election they will be)

But then again, maybe that is what separates us from the Islamists.

Demand that our President and the rest of his socialist government goon squad defend our way of life, our freedoms and our constitution, because if they don’t start soon, America just might become violent.

And none of us really wants that…

God Bless America and Long live the Constitution.

And good luck Pastor Jones… (You’ll need it)


Experts to Obama: You Can’t Ignore the Islamic Ideology Behind Terrorism


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

By Patrick Goodenough, International Editor

(CNSNews.com) – The Obama administration’s reluctance to acknowledge and confront the religious motivation behind Islamist terrorism is not helping the counter-terror effort, leading experts warn in a new report.
 
The administration’s recently released National Security Strategy (NSS) defines the enemy as “al-Qaeda and its terrorist affiliates,” but Washington Institute for Near East Policy report argues that it is a bigger one – “the extremist ideology that fuels and supports Islamist violence.”
 
Authors J. Scott Carpenter, Matthew Levitt, Steven Simon and Juan Zarate contend that just because ideology is not the only driving force behind violent Islamic terrorism does not mean it can be ignored.
 
Instead, the administration should recognize Islamism as “the key ideological driver” behind the threat posed by al-Qaeda and other radical Islamist groups, and prioritize an effort to combat the ideology, they say.
 
“To be sure, officials need to make very clear that they do not consider Islam itself a danger, only the distorted version of Islam perpetrated by radical extremists. But they – and, in particular, the president – must also come to terms with the fact that individuals implicated in each of the recently exposed plots in the United States were imbued with a common radical ethos.”
 
In keeping with President Obama’s agenda of reaching out to the Islamic world administration officials have moved away from terminology that could cause offense when discussing violent terrorism or extremism.

The NSS unveiled in May used variations of the phrase “al-Qaeda and its affiliates” repeatedly in identifying the enemy.  The word “Islam” appeared twice – the U.S. was not fighting a war against Islam, it said, and “neither Islam nor any other religion condones the slaughter of innocents.”
 
When he previewed the document in a speech several days before the launch, Obama’s counter terrorism advisor, John Brennan, said, “Our enemy is not terrorism because terrorism is but a tactic.”
 
“Nor do we describe our enemy as jihadists or Islamists because jihad is holy struggle, a legitimate tenet of Islam meaning to purify oneself or one’s community.”
 
(The NSS released by the Bush administration in 2006 stated that “the struggle against militant Islamic radicalism is the great ideological conflict of the early years of the 21st century.” It also called Islam “a proud religion” that “has been twisted and made to serve an evil end.”)
 
‘Extremist claims and action must be contested’
 
Nidal Malik Hasan, the U.S. Army major accused of killing 13 people at Fort Hood, Texas last November; Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian arrested after trying to bomb a Detroit-bound aircraft on Christmas Day 2009; and Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistani-American who tried to detonate a car bomb at Times Square on May 1, were all evidently inspired by Islamist propaganda.
 
The Washington Institute for Near East Policy report released this week says that U.S. national security is being undermined by a deepening “ideological competition within Islam.”
 
“The competition is between a modern, predominantly pluralistic view of the world and an exclusionary, harsh, and equally modern ideology that appeals to a glorious past, places aspects of religious identity above all others, and relies on a distorted interpretation of Islam,” it says.

“The conflict between these two visions constitutes a struggle for the hearts and minds of the majority of Muslims, who abhor violence, but who – out of sympathy, apathy, or fear – will not or cannot confront the extremists in their communities. Any strategy, therefore, that does not skillfully contest the claims and actions of radical extremism cannot succeed.”
 
The authors recommend that the administration broaden cooperation with foreign governments, NGOs and others “to empower credible Muslim voices to marginalize” Islamist radicals.
 
At home and abroad, the government should more effectively identify and support Muslim opinion-leaders who can provide alternative influences to “radicalizers” in their communities.
 
Other recommendations include prioritizing the importance of human rights and democracy in Arab countries – with Egypt’s looming political changes “a key test for the administration’s approach.”
 
And in engaging with the Muslim community at home, the authors suggest that the government reach out not only to the most vocal organizations, but also to the most representative.
 
“Some prominent Muslim American groups have questionable links to banned groups that should disqualify them as trusted government partners in the effort to combat extremism,” the report says. “Others, perhaps less vocal and often active at a more local level, warrant greater institutional recognition and support.”
 
The report did not elaborate, but two U.S. Muslim groups that receive considerable media exposure, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), were both named by the Justice Department in 2007 as “unindicted co-conspirators” in its case against the Holy Land Foundation in Texas, which was subsequently found guilty of raising money for Hamas.

Britain grapples with how to counter Islamist ideology 

Debates over how governments should tackle the ideology driving terrorism are also underway in Britain, where “homegrown” Muslim terrorists have carried out several deadly attacks in recent years.
 
Five years ago last week, four terrorists – three of them British-born – killed 52 people and themselves on London’s subway and a bus.
 
At an event marking the anniversary hosted at the Chatham House think tank, counter terrorism experts and officials were critical of elements of a government program that aims to stop people from becoming terrorists or supporting violent extremism.
 
The strategy, known as “Prevent,” provides government funding to local organizations deemed to be best placed to counter the ideology of violent extremism.
 
“Participants argued that there was a fine dividing line between supporting communities in trying to stop people turning to terrorism and stigmatizing communities as a threat to the rest of society,” according to a report by BBC Radio, a co-sponsor of the invitation-only Chatham House event.
 
The Prevent strategy came under close scrutiny earlier this year after a cross-party parliamentary committee carried out an in-depth inquiry into the program.
 
The inquiry found that the strategy was causing mistrust and suspicion in the Muslim community. It said organizations and projects receiving Prevent funding were seen as tainted, and many Muslims felt the government was trying to create a “moderate” Islam, by funding and promoting some organizations over others.
 
“We do not think it is the job of Government to intervene in theological matters,” the committee said in its report.
 
It also argued that the program was placing too much emphasis on religion as a factor driving people to violent extremism.
 
“There has been a pre-occupation with the theological basis of radicalization, when the evidence seems to indicate that politics, policy and socio-economics may be more important factors in the process,” it said.
 
The relative importance of socio-economic factors in driving British Muslims to Islamist terrorism has been widely disputed.
 
In a newly-released directory of Islamist attacks and convictions in the U.K. over the past decade, the Center for Social Cohesion, a British think tank focusing on extremism, reported that at least 31 percent of the individuals involved “had at some point attended university or a higher education institute.”
 
And at the time of the attack or criminal proceeding, 42 percent of the individuals were either employed or in full-time higher education.
 
The Center for Social Cohesion said its analysis “does not support the assertion made by some that there is a correlation between terrorist activity and low educational achievement and employment status.”
 
Abdulmutallab, the would-be Christmas Day bomber, was a mechanical engineering graduate of one of Britain’s most prestigious institutions, University College London, where he also headed the Islamic Society in 2006-2007.

 

In Search of Islam’s Contributions

by  Gary Bauer
07/12/2010

Rashad Hussain, President Obama’s special envoy to the Organization for the Islamic Conference (OIC), last month named his boss America’s “educator-in-chief on Islam.”

That wasn’t surprising given the President’s Muslim roots and his affinity for some Islamic traditions (he once wrote that the Muslim call to prayer is “one of the prettiest sounds on Earth”).

Obama clearly takes this title seriously, as recent events have shown. But Hussain’s designation was ironic because the more Obama talks about Islam, the clearer it becomes that he doesn’t seem to understand its most devout adherents.

Obama refuses to acknowledge that radical Islamists are prompted to violence and terrorism by their understanding of their faith. And he fails to recognize that his blame-America-first foreign policy won’t appease an enemy committed to violent jihad and the installation of a global caliphate.

Almost as bad, Obama has been going out of his way to highlight Islam’s supposed contributions—to science and technology, to America, to the world. The main effect of Obama’s Muslim ego-stroking is to call attention to just how little Muslims have actually contributed in the modern age. 

NASA administrator Charles Bolden gave an interview in late June to Al Jazeera television and told the Arabic-language news network that before he took his new job, Obama told him that “perhaps” his “foremost” duty was “to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science … and math and engineering.”

This is ludicrous. It is not our government’s job to make foreigners feel good about themselves. Michael Griffin, a former NASA head, responded that Obama’s NASA Muslim outreach is “deeply flawed.” But the White House is standing by Bolden’s description of his mission.

And whatever happened to the liberal left’s extreme devotion to their definition of separation of church and state (which has been defined as the absence of all signs of faith)? Silent are the voices of the anti-religionists over Obama’s outreach to nations based on their faith.

NASA’s new mission ignores that many devout Muslims view science and reason as diametrically at odds with their faith. NASA’s task is to help propel us towards a new tomorrow, while Islam’s most radical adherents want the world to recede from modernity.

Obama’s politicization of NASA belies the image of the man who ascended to the White House promising that “the days of science taking a back seat to ideology are over.” 

But science has repeatedly taken a back seat to ideology in this administration, on everything from stem cells to oil spills. The administration has been particularly anti-science when it comes to NASA.

Perhaps Obama wants NASA to focus on the psyche of Muslims because it is obvious there won’t be much of a space program for it to focus on. Under Obama, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration has demoted space exploration. Obama announced last spring that he would be grounding the space shuttle fleet and abandoning the Constellation project that was to take astronauts back to the Moon and beyond.

Twenty-six former astronauts, including Neil Armstrong, opposed the cuts, writing in a letter to the administration that the decision was “terrible” and “devastating.” But NASA has a more important mission now in Muslim outreach.

Obama’s desire that Muslims feel good about themselves has become a bizarre obsession.
He routinely calls Islam “a great religion” and has falsely claimed that America is one of the world’s largest Muslim countries.

When the White House celebrated Ramadan last September, Obama declared, “The contributions of Muslims to the United States are too long to catalog because Muslims are so interwoven into the fabric of our communities and our country.”

He said, “American Muslims are successful in business and entertainment; in the arts and athletics; in science and in medicine.” (Quick: name your favorite American Muslim athlete, entertainer or scientist. I said quick!)

“Above all,” he concluded, “they are successful parents, neighbors and active citizens.”

This is undoubtedly true. But the White House strained to affirm the President’s other grand assertions.

The White House honored, among others, the first American Muslim congressman, Keith Ellison, who has compared Bush’s actions after 9-11 to Nazi Germany. Then there was Nashala Hearn, who won a lawsuit against her Oklahoma school district for the right to wear a hijab, the Muslim women’s traditional head covering.

Perhaps Obama’s constant references to Muslim contributions has less to do with what they’ve bestowed to the country as a whole and more to do with the suspicion that millions of dollars in contributions to Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign came from Muslims abroad.

Even Libyan President Muammar Gadhafi cheered “all the people in the Arab and Islamic world and in Africa…[who] may have been in involved in legitimate contribution campaigns to enable [Obama] to win the American presidency.”

Then there were the votes of Muslim Americans, which, according to one post-election poll, Obama won by a more than nine-to-one margin.

Muslim contributions have been significant after all—if not to America then at least to America’s President. In Barack Obama’s eyes, contributions to his campaign and contributions to the country he leads is a distinction without a difference.

Former presidential candidate Mr. Gary Bauer is president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families.

 

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