Friday, August 28, 2015 

We must all keep opposing the Iran deal

David Weinberg says the deal has to be made politically toxic, and also points to Obama's view of America:
For decades, two tenets have informed U.S. policy in the Middle East. The first is that U.S. interests there are best served by the position of unquestioned American pre-eminence. The second is that military might holds the key to maintaining that dominant position. (In this context, Israel has been an important U.S. regional ally).

This approach is what Bacevich calls the "Big Enchilada" -- the America-as-top-dog approach that Obama is seeking to overturn.

Obama rejects this notion, since he essentially views America's preponderance in world affairs as arrogant and sinful. He feels that American "bullying" has brought about disastrous results.

Most telling was Obama's infamous lament in 2010 about America as "a dominant military superpower, whether we like it or not." In other words, he really doesn't like it at all. No statement could be more revealing of Obama's disgust for American global leadership.

In the context of the current deal with Iran, Obama has been equally clear as to how he expects this play out. If successfully implemented, the agreement that slows Iran's nuclear program will also end Iran's isolation. This will allow Tehran, over time, to become a "legitimate" and "extremely successful regional power" and a "powerhouse in the region." These are Obama's own words.

All this leads, of course, to American retreat -- blessed retreat from Obama's perspective -- from the projection of power in the region. Replacing America will be a revanchist, greatly emboldened, anti-Semitic and genocidal (toward Israel), Islamic Republic of Iran. Poof goes the Big Enchilada.

Obama has been mostly dismissive of Iran's "bad behavior," as he flippantly calls it. He says that he "hopes to have conversations" with Iranian leadership that might lead someday to their "abiding by international norms and rules"; that he "hopes and believes" that Iranian "moderates" will leverage their country's reintegration into the global economy as an opportunity to drive kinder, gentler and less revolutionary foreign policies.

Whether Obama himself believes such nonsense is moot. The rub is that Obama doesn't view American behavior in the region over past decades as any more moral or legitimate than Iran's behavior. Consequently, the main thing for him is the humbling and retreat of America.
He's already become one of America's worst presidents, and one of the most apathetic. It's just plain awful.

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Thursday, August 27, 2015 

Pew polling finds Haredis less favorable to Israel, yet many still support Republicans

The Pew Center made some odd discoveries about Haredis in the USA:
The findings are based on data from Pew’s 2013 study of U.S. Jews, breaking it up between Haredi and modern-Orthodox – About 62 percent identify as Haredi (Hasidic or non-Hasidic) and 31 percent identify as modern Orthodox.

According to the survey, 57% of Orthodox Jews, including 58 percent of Haredim, said they identified with or leaned toward the Republican Party, while just 18% of non-Orthodox Jews identified with or leaned toward the GOP. Orthodox Jews are also attached to the more conservative-minded segment of the Republican Party, as 58% say they would prefer a smaller government that provides fewer services over a bigger government providing more services.

As far as Republican candidates and lawmakers expressing a more vocal and hawkish pro-Israel stance, the poll finds that 61% of Orthodox Jews say they are “very emotionally attached” to Israel. But there are significant differences between Modern Orthodox Jews and Haredi Jews in displaying strong attachment to Israel. While 77% of modern Orthodox Jews say they are very emotionally attached to Israel, only 55% of Haredim say the same. Additionally, Haredim are less likely to say that caring about Israel is essential to being Jewish (45% vs. 79% of modern Orthodox) and that the U.S. is not supportive enough of Israel (48 vs. 64%); and 73% of Modern Orthodox Jews think that the Israeli government was making a sincere effort to reach a peace settlement, compared with 53% of Haredi Jews who said the same.

The stark differences can be found in the demographics of the Haredi community, as a large chunk of Hasidic households are affiliated with the Satmar community in Brooklyn and Kiryas Joel.

Interestingly enough, when it comes to their attitude towards president Barack Obama, Modern Orthodox and Haredi Jews equally disapprove Obama’s performance as president (57% vs. 54%).

What is most surprising is the fact that an overwhelming majority of Haredi Jews (89%) live in the Northeast region of the country, including New York and New Jersey, mostly represented by Democrats and heavily rated as blue states in national elections.
If this has any validity, it sure is odd. Many Haredi communities, as I've learned over the years, support socialist welfare lifestyles, particularly the Satmar. So if they support Republican candidates, that's pretty strange, although some conservative politicians can be very corrupt too, and greedy for votes. Come to think of it, if socialist-leaning Haredis support Republicans, that's actually rather embarrassing, because it all conflicts with what the GOP is supposed to stand for, and honestly, the GOP as a whole shouldn't kowtow to a community that's running an unproductive lifestyle at the expense of the taxpayers.

If I notice correctly, the percentage of Haredis disapproving of Obama's work is a bit less than that of non-Haredis, which suggests they're not quite the realists they ought to be on that issue. It's all an interesting study that does provide something to think about.

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Wednesday, August 26, 2015 

It would be bad if Daniel Barenboim played music in Iran

The Israel-hating musician Barenboim might be allowed to enter Iran just so he can play philharmonics with a German group:
Culture and Sport Minister Miri Regev demanded on Wednesday that German Chancellor Angela Merkel cancel talks of a possible performance in Tehran staged by the Berlin Philharmonic and its musical director, the world renowned pianist Daniel Barenboim.

Barenboim, the Argentinian-born Israeli, has earned a reputation in recent years as one of the harshest critics of government policies in the territories. [...]

"The conductor, Daniel Barenboim, a citizen of Israel, will perform in Iran together with the Berlin Philharmonic," Regev wrote. "Barenboim has taken an anti-Israel stance and he makes sure to slander Israel while using culture as leverage in order to state his political opinions against the State of Israel." [...]

"Daniel Barenboim's concert in Iran hurts Israel's efforts to prevent the nuclear agreement and boosts the delegitimization efforts against Israel," Regev wrote.

"Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism," she wrote. "It supports Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad, and Hamas, and its leaders have blood on their hands. I believe that Germany would do the right thing if it would cancel the performance."
That any German medium would willingly go to Iran at a time like this when they're still dominated by pure evil only says they haven't learned a true lesson. Their association with monsters like Barenboim speaks volumes.

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Tuesday, August 25, 2015 

100 Haredi rabbis in USA say it's vital to report child abuse to police

Some Haredi rabbis in America have set a positive example:
More than 100 haredi rabbis in the US have signed a public letter stating that it is an obligation of Jewish law on all Jews to immediately notify the police when a reasonable suspicion of child abuse exists, Jpost reports.

The letter addresses the need to uproot the existence of child abuse and prevent its negative affect on Jewish community.

“We, the undersigned, affirm that any individual with firsthand knowledge or reasonable basis to suspect child abuse has a religious obligation to promptly notify the secular law enforcement of that information,” the declaration reads.

“These individuals have the experience, expertise and training to thoroughly and responsibly investigate the matter. Furthermore, those deemed ‘mandated reporters’ under secular law must obey their state’s reporting requirements.”

The rabbis said in their declaration that “lives can be ruined or ended by unreported child abuse, as we are too often tragically reminded” and cited the biblical injunction “Do not stand by while your neighbor’s blood is shed,” as the basis for reporting suspected cases of abuse.
That line comes from Leviticus. I hope this will serve as a good example for why it's awful to sit around in Kitty Genovese syndrome when people are being victimized behind the scenes.

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France opens formal investigation into train jihad

The state has opened an investigation into how the thwarted jihadist managed to board the train to Paris:
French authorities formally opened a terrorism investigation Tuesday after a thwarted attack on a high-speed train last week, saying the suspected gunman had watched a jihadi video onboard minutes before the violence.

The decision to open an investigation was based on the actions of 26-year-old Moroccan suspect Ayoub El-Khazzani on the train Friday night and information from other European authorities about his travels and apparent links to radical Islam, prosecutor Francois Molins told reporters.

Molins said El-Khazzani notably watched the online video on his phone minutes before he walked through the Amsterdam-to-Paris train carrying an assault rifle and other weapons. Authorities say they found his phone in a bag left in the train.

The gunman was tackled and tied up by three American friends and a British businessman. Another man who tried to stop him — a French-American named Mark Moogalian — remained hospitalized Tuesday with a gunshot wound.

Now that the formal investigation is opened, investigating magistrates are expected to file numerous preliminary charges against El-Khazzani, including multiple attempted murders in connection with terrorism, possession of weapons in connection with terrorism, and participation in a terrorist conspiracy.

According to French law, authorities must file preliminary charges against the suspect by Tuesday night or seek a special extension to his temporary custody.

The next step will be determining where his weapons came from, how he financed them and whether he had any accomplices, Molins said.

El-Khazzani was found to have an AKM assault rifle with 270 rounds of ammunition, a 9mm handgun, a box-cutter and a bottle of gasoline, the prosecutor said.

Prosecutors also found a small explosive warhead hidden in the glass box containing the hammer used to break train windows in case of an emergency. They didn't elaborate.

The suspect had travelled through several European countries and had been repeatedly incarcerated in Spain and flagged for surveillance in France, Molins said.

After five to seven months in 2014 in France, El-Khazzani lived successively in Brussels, Cologne, Vienna, and then again in Cologne and Brussels — but the prosecutor gave no indication of dates.

French surveillance helped authorities spot the suspect on a flight May 10 from Berlin to Istanbul, then on a return flight from Antakya, Turkey, to Tirana, Albania, via Istanbul, Molins said. The suspect, however, denied going to Turkey. He may have tried to go to Syria.

Under questioning, El-Khazzani said he had no terrorism plans and had found a bag of weapons the night before in a Brussels park and planned to use them to rob passengers, according to Molins. But his explanation grew less and less lucid, the prosecutor said, and the suspect eventually stopped speaking to French investigators at all.

El-Khazzani boarded the train on Friday at a Brussels station.

One reason investigators suspect a planned attack was that El-Khazzani, who claimed to be homeless and living in a Brussels park, took a first-class ticket and refused to take an earlier train even though there were seats available.

In Brussels, investigators searched two buildings where the gunman may have stayed in the Molenbeek-Saint-Jean neighborhood, the Federal Prosecutor's Office said in a statement Tuesday. No one was detained or taken in for questioning, although investigators seized "some objects" for further examination.

Two people were injured in Friday's attack: U.S. Airman 1st Class Spencer Stone and Moogalian, who is hospitalized in northern France with a bullet wound.

U.S. military authorities in Germany say Stone is doing well at an American military hospital where he is being treated. Landstuhl Regional Medical Center spokesman Chuck Roberts said Stone arrived at the facility in southern Germany on Monday and seemed in good spirits, smiling and shaking hands with leaders of the U.S. military hospital.

He says Stone is being treated for a laceration to his thumb, for which a full recovery is expected with ongoing therapy, as well as a "non-critical" eye injury and other minor wounds.

It's not yet clear when Stone will be transferred back to the United States.
What's really vital is improving security measures at train and bus stations so that baggage is checked. That's the only way they can ensure deadly weapons won't be brought onto a commercial journey for the purpose of committing terrorism.

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Monday, August 24, 2015 

South Africa MP defends Israel

A politician from south Africa says there's no apartheid in Israel:
South African Member of Parliament Kenneth Meshoe spoke out against the claim by Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement activists that Israel is an "apartheid state."

"There are many Christians that support Israel, but they don't come out...Those who know what real apartheid is, as I know, know that there is nothing in Israel that looks like apartheid," Meshoe, who is the president of the African Christian Democratic Party, told Israel’s Channel 10. He added that those who support Israel in South Africa frequently encounter "intimidation."

The view that Israel is an apartheid state, he said, "is an empty political statement that does not hold truth. You see people of different colors, backgrounds, and religions [coexist in the country]."
Exactly. There's nothing here like what the BDS movement wants everyone to think. And he says that the BDS movement is just a pain, which they are.

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Saturday, August 22, 2015 

US army officials thwart terror attack on train to Paris

It's very lucky these army members were traveling aboard a train heading from Amsterdam to Paris, because the train staff didn't show proper courage to deal with this themselves (Hat tip: Hot Air):
The struggle was brief, bloody and chaotic.

The high-speed train was zipping from Amsterdam to Paris on Friday when a shirtless man emerged from the bathroom — a rifle slung over his shoulder, witnesses said.

A French passenger and three Americans — a civilian, an Air Force member and a National Guard member — jumped into action. They quickly tackled him, possibly averting a massacre aboard the train.

By the time the suspect was subdued, three people had nonlife-threatening injuries, said Anthony Blondeau, a spokesman for Arras city in northern France, where the train pulled up after the incident and the suspect was arrested. One of the Americans was among the injured.
The suspect was identified as a Moroccan terrorist known to authorities in Spain. The soldiers and French rider who took down the filth did the right thing to spring into action, and saved many people from a more serious disaster.

Update: here's more exact confirmation of the attempted gunman's identity:
A French official close to the investigation says police have positively identified the train gunman as 26-year-old Moroccan Ayoub El-Khazzani. French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said earlier Saturday that Spanish authorities had alerted French intelligence to him in February 2014 because he "belonged to the radical Islamist movement," and the French put him on a security watch list. El-Khazzani was identified through his fingerprints, according to the official, who insisted on not being identified by name because of the ongoing probe.
The reason why he was able to smuggle a gun and box cutting knife aboard the train is because, although there are armed soldiers guarding stations, they don't use metal detectors and bag searches. Well they're going to have to change all that if they really want the rides to be safe.

Update 2: here's more about the brave men who defeated the terrorist.

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Friday, August 21, 2015 

Islamofascism's use of rape as a tool

Michael Ledeen wrote about how sexual abuse is a leading factor in the Muslim doctrine:
There was a brief flurry of outrage at the report that the “Caliph” of the Islamic state had repeatedly raped American aid worker Kayla Mueller [1] before she finally died in an attack against IS targets. The New York Times devoted a lot of space [2] to what it called the “theology of rape” that is an integral part of the doctrine and practice of the “Caliphate.” The Times story suggested that the systematic use of rape was of relatively recent vintage for IS, but the violent treatment of women by radical Islamists is nothing new. It ranges from rape and honor killings to beating, to formal, legal definition of women as inferior beings. In Iran, for example, the legal code treats a woman as “worth” half a man, and this is reflected in penalties for crimes against them. If a man kills a pregnant woman with a male fetus, for example, he is likely to be ordered to pay a full charge for the fetus but half as much for the mother.

[...] Needless to say, rape, honor killings and the oppression of women are not limited to radical Islamist men. But the systematic use of rape certainly seems more common to them than to any other contemporary group. This should not surprise us; the environment in which radical Islam is transmitted to the young men seems almost deliberately designed to produce sexual repression. The madrasas in which Koranic ideology is taught are sexually segregated and physically unpleasant. The students typically sit cross-legged on the ground for hours on end, memorizing the sacred text. There are no females in their lives, and the hormones of the faithful are every bit as powerful as those of the infidels. Ergo, they emerge with wild sexual fantasies that are fueled by promises of a sexual paradise in which the faithful will be rewarded by the total submission of 72 beautiful virgins.
No wonder IS uses rape as a recruiting tool!
I think I can see his point. They have such a horrific education system, it renders them all but incapable of maintaining a polite relationship with the opposite sex. Obviously, there's no proper sex education in Islam, and certainly not a belief in convincing respect for the fairer sex, so they emerge as beasts in sheep's clothing.

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How much did Cosby's producers know about his misogynist antics?

A few weeks ago, the Washington Post asked how many people working with Bill Cosby knew he was harrassing, drugging and raping numerous women, more than 40 who've now come forward to tell about the perverted crimes he committed against them. One of the possible in-the-knows is said to be a former employee of the William Morris talent agency who passed away in 2011. But what about Tom Werner and Marcy Carsey, his producers on the Cosby Show and the spinoff series, A Different World? How much did they know? I've seen at least a few people asking online if they were aware he was assaulting various actresses, a couple who appeared onscreen as guests on some of his programs. Indeed, how much did Werner know, for example?

Until that can be answered, I found something from past history involving Roseanne Barr, whose crummy sitcom they produced too, that's not only insulting, it even made me lose more respect for Werner and company than before: Barr's catastrophous recitation of the Star-Spangled Banner in 1990 and her reaction to the crowd that booed her in San Diego:
Five days before she was to sing, Barr made an appearance on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.

During the interview, Carson said, “I understand in a couple days you’re going to be doing the national anthem. I didn’t know you could sing.”

“Of course, I can,” Barr said.

Asked to give the audience a sample, Barr sang Kung Fu Fighting.

It was not good.

“I realized she can’t sing,” Strasberg said. “We’ve got a problem here."

Said Werner: "Don’t worry, she’s a professional."

Um, yeah.

A professional comedian. Barr had planned to ham it up a little for the crowd, which wasn’t a bright idea. Things snowballed from there.
I didn't think she was a talented performer either. Yet Werner, who owns the Boston Red Sox, kept defending her as though nothing happened. It got worse:
“But the perception in the stands is that people are booing and she doesn’t want to hear the boos,” Strasberg said. “And her voice gets louder and now she’s screeching.”

Boos began almost as soon as Barr opened her mouth. Perhaps it was the comedian’s instinct, when things went south, to take it over the top. Maybe she was going for a laugh when she made it so shrill, stretching out and screeching the word “free” toward the end of the song.

But that’s not what you do with this song, and certainly not in this town.

Barr's performance didn't end with the music. She grabbed herself and spit on the ground before walking off the field. It was supposed to imitate a ballplayer but from the stands it appeared more as a gesture to the crowd. Blame Padres catcher Mark Parent. A newspaper account the next day said Parent was sitting next to Roseanne in the dugout beforehand and provided the inspiration for that little portion of the incident.

“Hey, why don’t you grab your crotch,” Parent had suggested

“Yeah,” Barr said. “Just like a player. And I’ll spit, too.”

They laughed about it.

“I’ll do it after I sing,” Barr had said. “You know how people are about the anthem.”

She had no idea.
She didn't have any common sense either. Whatever she did there, it was in pretty poor taste and better avoided, but Barr is the kind of comedienne who's too obsessed with pushing the edge of the envelope.
Reporters tried to get to Werner in his luxury box for a comment after the incident, but he refused to come out. [...]
He may have been embarrassed, but then, why did he stick by Barr till the bitter end? The Washington Post says he was blamed for many years, and I'm inclined to agree, seeing how poorly he went about all this. Parent is clearly also guilty on his part of encouraging her to be crude.

And if he could be so irresponsible in his dealings with Barr, that's why I wouldn't be surprised if he knew about Cosby's backstage antics but ignored it all just because he wanted to make all the money he did off of Cosby's sitcoms. In fact, an actress named Eden Tirl, who played a policewoman once on the series, said she'd been assaulted by Cosby but ignored by staff members she spoke to.

After reading those accounts, it's made me lose all respect I once had for Werner and Carsey, whose employment of Barr is exactly why it's no surprise they could ignore all the problems with Cosby to boot. I was losing interest in sitcoms by the end of the last century, and this terrible case has only made me feel all the more discouraged from trying again. Many businesses no longer want anything to do with Cosby, but they should distance themselves from Carsey-Werner too, for being such irresponsible, self-important idiots who let a wolf in sheep's clothing run rampant.

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Muslim overlords want to wage jihad against global warming

Yes, seriously, that's what this Daily Caller report is telling:
A group of influential Muslims is calling on others of their faith to wage a jihad on global warming, and is calling on Islamic governments to reduce their use of fossil fuels ahead of the United Nations climate summit in Paris this year.

“Excessive pollution from fossil fuels threatens to destroy the gifts bestowed on us by God, whom we know as Allah – gifts such as a functioning climate, healthy air to breathe, regular seasons, and living oceans,” wrote Islamic leaders from 20 countries after attending a summit in Istanbul, Turkey.

“We are driven to conclude from these warnings that there are serious flaws in the way we have used natural resources – the sources of life on Earth. An urgent and radical reappraisal is called for,” the Muslims wrote to Islamic government officials, delegates and activists.
Which you can be sure means little more than violence, even against people who have nothing to do with all this environmental nonsense.
But will this letter actually convince countries to ditch fossil fuels? Not likely, as many Islamic nations make up the oil cartel OPEC and are heavily reliant on oil, gas and coal to keep their developing economies running.
That's why the declaration is actually a laughless farce.

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About me

  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
  • I was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. I also enjoyed reading a lot of comics when I was young, the first being Fantastic Four. I maintain a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy in facts. I like to think of myself as a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. I don't expect to be perfect at the job, but I do my best.
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