Wednesday, 20 August 2014
How Long Will Nasty Little Qatar Remain Immune From Attack?
A German official accuses Qatar of backing ISIS, here. Qatar's billions have helped fund Sunni fanatics in Syria, the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, and those connected to the Muslim Brotherhood, and Al Qaeda, in Libya. Why are there no bombs being set off in Qatar? A few would convey the right message. And why does the American government continue to give Qatar's rulers a sense of security by keeping a base there? Or is it that American planes, bombing ISIS, have been allowed to fly from that base in Qatar? If so, let it be known. Qatar can't keep having it not both, but a dozen ways.
Posted on 08/20/2014 10:39 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
The Five Greatest Failures Of The Coverage Of The Gaza Campaign
From Honest Reporting, here.
Posted on 08/20/2014 9:33 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
Iranian Science Minister, Not Demented By Islam, Loses His Job
Faraji-Dana was willing to re-hire professors who had been discharged for being too anti-regime (too secular), and to re-admit students ho had been expelled for being too anti-regime (too secular). In other words, he was not crazed by Islam. Now he's out. Iranian universities will suffer.
Posted on 08/20/2014 9:23 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
Obama Condemns ISIS: Some Truths, More Absurdities
He says the whole "world is appalled" by the decapitation of James Foley. Is it, now? Was it appalled at the videos of the decapitation, by Muslims in Pakistan, of Daniel Pearl? Was it appalled by the decapition, also on video, of Michael Berg, who had gone to Iraq to help build radio transmission towers? Was it appalled by the decapitation of several British prisoners held hostage? Or of all the Christians, in Syria and Iraq, decapitated? Or the hundreds of Yazidis? Or of the Shi'a -- or at least those who were not shot, in wholesale, Einsatzgruppen fashion? Apparently the world's Muslims were not appalled, for not only did they not utter a syllable of protest -- only now are some issuing highly misleading "deplorings" of the activities of ISIS, because they know that Islam has what might be called an "image problem" and, in the case of the Saudis, they fear that ISIS could imperil the rule of the Al-Saud -- but they did, rather, see those videos being used, quite successfully, to attract Muslims from all over the world, including Western Europe and North America, to join the Jihad and head straight to the nascent would-be Caliphate that bestrides eastern Syria and western Iraq.
No, the whole world was not "appalled." The Muslim world was, or many of its Truest of True Believers were and are, excited and delighted by what Obama claims surely must have appalled everyone.
He shows still no signs of recognizing that one of the most important responsibilities of rule is to instruct those whom you would protect. He has not instructed, but misinformed, those whom he presumes to protect, diminishing their own ability to choose or even formulate the right policies to deal with the permanent menace of Islam, and of those who, like the members of ISIS, take the teachings and texts of Islam most to heart.
He need not have, yet again, pretended that Islam is not at the heart of ISIS. ISIS is showing the world what Islam, in its purest form, the form of the earliest conquering Muslims, the form that is described in Qur'an and, especially, the Hadith and Sira, is and must have been like. Does Obama, does Kerry, does Ben Rhodes, do any of these limited people have the beginnings of a glimmer of a glint of this truth? How could they? It's not possible. They haven't the time to read and think. They believe what they want to believe.
It's not altogether false, that speech by Obama, but contains so many mad, and bad, and dangerous untruths.
Posted on 08/20/2014 8:07 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
A Musical Interlude: More Than You Know (Ruth Etting)
Posted on 08/20/2014 4:47 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
British Isis militant in James Foley video 'guards foreign hostages in Syria'
From the Guardian
The English jihadist who beheaded the American journalist James Foley is believed to be the leader of a group of British fighters holding foreign hostages in Syria, sources have told the Guardian.
As an international manhunt got under way on Wednesday, the English-speaking militant was identified to the Guardian by one of his former hostages as the ringleader of three British jihadists thought to be the main guards of foreign nationals in Raqqa, a stronghold of Islamic State (Isis) rebels.
The militant who appeared on the Foley video, who called himself John and is believed to be from London, was said to be the main rebel negotiator during talks earlier this year to release 11 Islamic State hostages – who were eventually handed to Turkish officials after ransom demands were met.
The FBI, MI5 and Scotland Yard's counter-terrorism command were all on Wednesday night racing to identify the militant who fronted the propaganda video that showed the brutal murder of Foley, the journalist who had been missing in Syria since 2012.
Sources in Syria recognised the man as a point-man for hostage negotiations in Raqqa, where he is said to have held discussions with several families of jailed foreign nationals over the internet.
One former hostage, who was held for a year in Raqqa, told the Guardian the British executioner is intelligent, educated and a devout believer in radical Islamic teachings. The three UK-born militants were referred to as "the Beatles" by fellow hostages because of their nationality, the former captive added.
Experts in the the counter-terrorism and linguistics fields said the man appeared to be one of up to 500 British-born jihadists "brutalised" by Isis after fleeing the UK to fight in Syria and Iraq.
Security services in the UK and US were analysing the propaganda footage, with forensic phonetics experts among those thought to be involved in trying to identify the masked militant from his accent.
Prof Paul Kerswill, a linguistics expert at the University of York, said he believed the man spoke in "multicultural London English" most commonly found in London's East End. "He probably has a foreign language background but it sounds like multicultural London English, which is people from all kinds of backgrounds who mix in the East End, a new kind of cockney," he said.
Dr Claire Hardaker, a linguistics experts at Lancaster University, studied the clip and said the man's vowels marked him out as likely from the south-east of England, but most likely from London. "We're definitely looking at a British accent, from the south, and probably from London, Kent or Essex."
It is an accent I hear in London. It is not my accent, not my London, but London is mine no longer. I suspect he is African or Caribbean, maybe a convert. Even if he doesn't actually know Michael Adebolajo, he is from the same mould, the same cesspit.
Posted on 08/20/2014 3:32 PM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
WSJ Coverage Obscures Hamas’ Toll on Gazans
Funeral for fallen Hamas Qassem Fighters in Gaza
August 20, 2014
1211 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036
The WSJ front page article (A Secretive Army of Hamas Emerges, August 20, 2014) while profiling the fallen Hamas fighters of the Qassem Brigade eludes the context of the terrorist group’s toll on Gazans . Besides evidence uncovered by the IDF and other media of using civilians as human shields, both children and adults were impressed by Hamas into building the terror tunnels crossing the frontier into Israel. Further your article provides no information on the Islamic theocratic tenets underlying the Charter of Hamas preached by Imams in the Gaza mosques that these fallen Qassem Brigade fighters follow to become shahids, martyrs for jihad.
Tablet Magazine cited a 2012 Report by The Institute of Palestine Studies stating that “At least 160 children have been killed excavating the tunnels, according to Hamas officials.”
Recently, The Algemeiner reported that Israel’s Walla news service revealed that Gazans had been impressed by Hamas as tunnel excavators, with tens killed to keep that a secret, Report: Tens of Terror-Tunnel Diggers Executed by Hamas. It cited a Gazan source saying: “Anyone suspected of providing Israel with information is killed. They killed several of the diggers because there were rumors that some of them work for Israel or were in contact with Israeli civilians who they knew from their time as construction workers in Israel. They were very cruel.”
Then there was this from a Fox News report drawn from a smuggled letter written by a 30 year old Gazan man who “described back-breaking labor performed in unventilated shafts, with Hamas overseers screaming and even assaulting workers not deemed to be working hard enough. In the end, after the workers were taken back home and paid meager wages for their work. We didn’t know where we’d been, or what tunnel we dug”. More heart breaking was the death of the young man’s father impressed by Hamas into building rockets. He wrote: “From that day, every morning an armed Hamas member used to come to the shop and give us orders to make winged metal pipes. Straight away I understood that they were used to launch rockets. One day a pickup truck came and the Hamas members took my father from the shop. We never saw him again. Later I learned they killed him and threw his body into a pit”.
Those fallen Hamas Qassem Brigade members the WSJ article profiled venerated the precepts of the Hamas Charter of 1988 calling for the annihilation of the Jewish State of Israel and Jews globally. The Charter cites this precept from the Qur’an: “The prophet, prayer and peace be upon him, said: The time will not come until Muslims will fight the Jews; until the Jews hide behind rocks and trees, which will cry: O Muslim! there is a Jew hiding behind me, come on and kill him!”
The WSJ owes its readers full and complete coverage of the Hamas war toll of Gazans and Israelis.
Jerome B. Gordon
Posted on 08/20/2014 1:16 PM by Jerry Gordon
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
The Pleasure-Seeking Princeling, Deprived Of A Little Of His Loot
Abdul Aziz, the famous "amateur des plaisirs" (which translates as: a debauchee beyond all Western imagining) who regards Europe as, to use J. B. Kelly's lapidary phrase, a "combination fun-fair and brothel," had - according to the latest estimates -- a million dollars worth of euros on him, in one of his suitcases, which the robbers relieved him of, as well as taking away his "medications" as they were demurely described by his staff.
The latest news on the robbery here.
Posted on 08/20/2014 12:31 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
Resisting the Islamist Threat
British diplomats are not accustomed to brooding over philosophical questions of life and death. Yet the report in August 2014 of Sir John Jenkins, U.K. ambassador to Saudi Arabia, to Prime Minister David Cameron suggests he might have been reading, or at least the opening passages of, Albert Camus’s book The Myth of Sisyphus.
In that book, Camus asserts that there is only one serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. Ambassador Jenkins had been asked by Cameron to provide a complete picture of the philosophy, activities, impact, and influence of the Muslim Brotherhood that has been operating in Britain since 1995. Jenkins is not, of course, on the path of committing Britain to any suicide mission, but his report that there is little evidence to show that the Brotherhood is a “terrorist organization” ignores the danger of Islamist extremism to Britain as well as to other countries.
Cameron, who has delayed publication of the report, is not the only individual startled by this conclusion. Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the United Arab Emirates have banned the Brotherhood as a terrorist group. The court in Cairo has sentenced 529 members of them to death so far in 2014 and has imprisoned many others. The crown prince, Zayed al-Nahyan, of the Abu Dhabi royal family, even informed the British Foreign Office of the danger he felt in London from members of the Brotherhood.
It is difficult to reconcile the Jenkins report with the behavior of two organizations, ISIS and Hamas, associated with the Brotherhood, as well as with the actions, which include the murder of tourists on a bus in the Sinai Peninsula, of the Brotherhood itself. Along with the Muslim Brotherhood, both of these are Islamic extremist groups, violent in their ruthless pursuit of objectives – ISIS to create a caliphate empire, and Hamas to eliminate the State of Israel.
The brutality of ISIS, now transformed into an Islamic state with a caliph, is apparent after its conquest of about a third of Syria, including the oil-rich eastern part, and much of north and central Iraq. Its ruthlessness and brutality are well-documented. That ruthlessness includes making decapitation an art form, executing dozens of Iraqi security forces, and cutting heads of Syrians. It has imposed sharia law, banned music, separated boys and girls in school, and forced women to wear the niqab, or full veil.
The U.S. has finally acted as a result of the ISIS capture in August 2014 of Sinjar Province after the Kurdish forces, the armed Peshmerga fighters (those who face death), withdrew from the area. About 50,000 of the Yazidi, the Kurdish-speaking ethnic-religious group numbering about 700,000, and living in the Nineveh province, once part of ancient Assyria, were forced into the barren mountainous range, which by legend is the final resting place of Noah’s Ark.
The U.S. delivered an airlift of food and water for humanitarian reasons, and air strikes to prevent ISIS from advancing into Kurdistan. The U.S. action has also lent help to, if not made a tacit alliance with, the PKK, Kurdistan Worker’s Party, a group formerly regarded as terrorists but now valuable against the jihadist threat. Though the Obama administration has not proposed this, the present conflict provides the opportunity for the existing semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan, set up in 2005, to be transformed into a Kurdish state, long overdue since promised by Britain and France in 1920.
If the Western democracies appeared for too long to be unaware of the scale of the danger of Islamist ISIS, many, especially those in the mainstream media and the churches, seem equally oblivious to the real nature and danger of Hamas. They have not accepted that the real contemporary struggle is between an extreme and regressive Islamist group, linked to the Muslim Brotherhood and interested in the killing of Jews and the creation of a caliphate state, and the existence and survival of democratic Israel.
One can discount the raucous demonstrations by Palestinians and supporters in the United States and in Europe. Those demonstrations, orchestrated by Islamists shouting “Allah akbar,” are totally negative, full of hatred and anger, shaking of fists, calling for another, a third, intifada, and often obsessed with anti-Semitic remarks to kill Jews. Even the main cry, “free Gaza,” in the demonstrations is inaccurate. It should really be “free Gaza from Hamas” which occupies and controls the Gaza Strip, though the demonstrators are ignorant of this.
Two other things are important: the fear in the Western world as a result of anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic violence, and the behavior of the mainstream media, of which in the U.S. the New York Times is the most important.
There is now little doubt that much of the hostility against Israel has been transformed into prejudicial anti-Semitism. The level of violence and the number of attacks on individual Jews and Jewish institutions, synagogues, school, stores, Holocaust memorials, and cultural events has made those institutions resemble armed fortresses. A crowd mentality of hatred has made decent individuals afraid to speak out.
A recent example in August 2014 of this fear is the decision of the well-known Sainsbury’s store in London to take its kosher foods (Jewish, not Israeli) off the shelves and hide them for fear of anti-Israeli protestors. This is not an anti-Semitic action, but it is a cowardly one – a refusal to challenge bigots.
What is equally troubling is the impact of the biased media reporting on Gaza on many well-meaning people, who are genuinely concerned with instances of injustice and confused about the moral difference between actions of Hamas and Israel. The Foreign Press Association, not normally friendly to Israel, has protested the blatant incessant, forceful, and unorthodox methods employed by Hamas authorities against international journalists in Gaza. Foreign correspondents have been harassed, threatened, or questioned over stories and information they have reported.
One therefore cannot trust the information from Gaza, or the unreliable list of Palestinian casualties, or the biased accounts of UNRWA officials. From the avalanche of negative reporting on Israel, one can only conclude that there is a media, as well as a military, war going on. One perceives the constant repetition of the number of Palestinian civilians, especially children, killed as a result of Israeli strikes against Hamas rocket launchers. Never shown, except by a few courageous reporters after they have left the Gaza Strip, are the videos of rockets being launched from civilian areas. Rarely reported are the accounts of the children being used as human shields and as workers in the underground tunnels, in which 160 children, between 12 and 13, died.
In forming opinions on political subjects, perception may be more important than facts. People may focus on something they perceive as injustice. It was Arthur Brisbane, the editor associated with the Hearst Empire, who said in 1911, “Use a picture; it’s worth a thousand words.”
Most influential in the media war has been the publication of photos of Palestinian problems on the front page of major papers. In this the New York Times has been the main culprit. It is ironic that Brisbane’s grandson was public editor of the New York Times for three years, 2010-2013. The newspaper outdid itself in its issue of Monday, August 18. On page 1, a photo portrays the remains of an apartment in the neighborhood of Al Shaas, with the accompanying script: “An estimated 11,000 homes were destroyed in Gaza.” No context is given, and whether the home was the site of a rocket launcher or used by terrorists is not explained.
On page 8 of the NYT there are three more photos of displaced families on the grounds of Al Shifa Hospital. What is strikingly ignored is that videos show that the site of this hospital was used to launch missiles.
Western public opinion, the media, and the academic world should recognize the existing struggle between an Islamist threat that would end the tolerance and civil liberties in the societies its forces might control, and democratic countries, with all their faults and problems, trying to resist that threat. The choice should not be difficult, even for the New York Times. It certainly should not be suicide.
First published in the American Thinker.
Posted on 08/20/2014 7:17 AM by Michael Curtis
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
Yemen's "Excellent Example," Haunted By Houthis
Obama pointed to Yemen as a model.
Here are the Houthis in Yemen, giving the government an ultimatum that runs out in two days.
Posted on 08/20/2014 6:03 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
Tower Hamlets: a vote for Lutfur Rahman is a virtuous and Islamic act with a reward in the afterlife.
From the Telegraph, The Times, The London Evening Standard and local newspaper The Wharf
A Muslim mayor has been accused of intimidating voters by allowing his supporters to tell them backing his rivals would be “un-Islamic and sinful” in order to drum up support. Lutfur Rahman, the mayor of Tower Hamlets, reportedly threatened council staff and bribed religious groups, documents filed at the High Court claim.
He allegedly told electors that voting for him would be a “virtuous and Islamic act” while threatening his opponents with punishment in the afterlife. The mayor’s supporters allegedly told voters leaving prayers that the Labour candidate intended to close the mosques and Islam would be safe only if Mr Rahman were re-elected. Activists outside a polling station allegedly told Bengali voters: “Islam is in danger. You must vote for Lutfur otherwise you are not a good Muslim.”
The petition states that the consequence of this influence was that voting Labour would be un-Islamic and sinful, but supporting Mr Rahman was virtuous and Islamic. “Voting for [Mr Rahman] may, in the premises, attract awards in the hereafter; and voting for Mr Biggs, being a sinful activity, may lead to punishment in the hereafter.”
Rahman, Britain’s first elected Muslim mayor, lead a “systematic campaign of intimidation” including widespread postal vote fraud to ensure victory against his Labour rival in May’s election, the legal dossier claims. He, or those acting on his behalf, allegedly told activists for his party, Tower Hamlets First, to collect and fill out 250 postal vote application forms each at a meeting held in a Bangladeshi restaurant ahead of May’s election, which he won by 3000 votes.
It alleges that Tower Hamlets staff were threatened at a meeting to support Mr Rahman’s re-election that they “may lose their jobs at the council” if they did not obtain 100 votes each for him. It was made clear that these votes should be obtained illegally, “including through postal vote fraud”,
Young men working for the council canvassed for the mayor during working hours
His representatives told voluntary organisations that they must obtain votes for him by illegal means if they wished to retain council grants. On estates, supporters asked for blank postal ballots and filled them in. Electors on estates with external post boxes did not receive their postal ballots. Mr Rahman’s supporters removed and used them
The 70 page document makes further allegations, including detailing accusations of racism levelled by the mayor's team at his main rival, Labour's John Biggs, through press releases issued by the mayor's Tower Hamlets First party before being repeated on Mr Rahman's website and in Bangladeshi newspapers. . . the “No to John Biggs for mayor” campaign published comments that two senior members of Tower Hamlets Labour party were “shaytaan [Satans] in disguise”.
The petition outlines: "Over the course of the election campaign, councillors and candidates of THF and other supporters (of Mayor Rahman) engaged in a campaign to discredit and smear Mr Biggs by... accusing him of being a racist and hostile to the Muslim community in general and the Bangladeshi community in particular."
Accusations surrounding the vote included eight people claiming they were turned away from polling stations as somebody had impersonated them, as well as a large number of incidents connected to postal vote fraud.
The petition also documents illegal practices such as groups of up to 30 THF activists gathering at polling stations and intimidating voters. Some voters were escorted into polling booths and there were five incidents cited of voters going into booths together.
A young woman was permitted to “help” an older woman to fill in her ballot paper at a polling station. A Bengali family was so intimidated that they were willing to enter only when provided with a police escort
It was also claimed the returning officer failed to supervise the count properly or train staff adequately. It makes accusations of count staff speaking Bengali to the mayor's team, promising to campaign for him in future and being whispered to by the mayor.
In the dossier, the petitioners allege that Mr Rahman “knew or suspected corrupt practices were being carried out and took no or insufficient measures to prevent them” and was therefore himself guilty of corruption.
A group of four petitioners lodged the 70-page dossier yesterday asking the court to declare his election invalid. The petitioners are calling for the chaotic election – which saw the announcement of some results delayed by five days - to be declared invalid. Mr Rahman last month failed in a bid to have the case thrown out and is now set to face a High Court trial over the claims, which he denies.
A spokesman for Mr Rahman said: “The allegations filed with the court yesterday don’t come as a surprise. They repeat allegations made before and which have never been proven, despite thorough investigations by the Metropolitan Police and Electoral Commission. We look forward to vigorously contesting them in court.”
Posted on 08/20/2014 3:43 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Wednesday, 20 August 2014
Farage: Use 144-Year-Old Law Act to Strip Jihadists of British Citizenship
From Breitbart London
UKIP leader Nigel Farage has called on Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron to take a stand on the Islamic State and strip UK nationals who are fighting abroad of their citizenship and cancel passports using the little-known Foreign Enlistment Act of 1870.
UKIP leader Farage said in a press release today that; “in choosing to quit the UK to fight abroad, [UK National Islamic State Fighters] have rendered themselves effectively stateless by conforming to an ideology of wanting to create a terrifying caliphate. If they choose to leave the UK they simply should not be allowed to return. Where intelligence identifies UK nationals fighting for IS their repatriation absolutely should be blocked."
The statement said that those fighting abroad should be stripped of their British citizenship, passports of British only citizens should be withdrawn and foreign nationals with a ‘right to reside’ in the UK should have that terminated immediately.
Farage insists Parliament should be reconvened to amend the Foreign Enlistment act 1870, which presently only covers enlistment in the armies of foreign states. As ISIS or the Islamic state is technically considered a non-state actor or transnational terror group, British citizens taking up arms in their name are not covered by the act.
In controlling the movement of British Jihadists, time is absolutely of the essence.
Posted on 08/20/2014 2:48 PM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Tuesday, 19 August 2014
'How is democracy treating you guys?' Islamic ISIS militants taunt Ferguson protestors on social media
From the Daily Mail
ISIS militants and their supporters are using social media to encourage protesters in Ferguson to embrace radical Islam and fight against the U.S. government.
Jihadists in Syria and Iraq and their sympathisers in the West have taken to Twitter to send messages of support to hundreds of demonstrators taking part in a ninth night of angry protests in the U.S. city following the shooting by police of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown.
The news comes as footage purportedly taken from the scene of the Ferguson protests appeared to show one demonstrator marching along a street holding a sign reading 'ISIS is here'. It is not known whether the banner - footage of which has not yet been independently verified - was in support of the militant group or, as seems more likely, it was an attempt to compare ISIS to the local police force or the U.S. government. Nevertheless stills of the alleged CNN footage were embraced by jihadists who have claimed they prove jihadists are already playing their part in the protests.
One ISIS sympathiser calling himself Mujahid Miski, who claims to be from Minneapolis–Saint Paul but suggests he is now based in 'the horn of Africa', has led the campaign to encourage those taking part in the protests to embrace radical Islam.
In one message he tweets: 'So how is democracy treating you guys? #FergusonUnderIS #Ferguson.' He adds: 'I thought u guys back in #Ferguson were supposed to be Free & that u had equal rights. I'd really like to know what changed? #FergusonUnderIS'.
Miski goes on to retweet dozens of messages by a Twitter user with the handle @AmreekiWitness, who claims to monitor and support the growth of radical Islam in the U.S. Amreeki Witness' messages focus on the treatment of black people in the U.S., praise Malcolm X for embracing Islam and urge angry young black men to take up the religion as it means the police 'will fear you'.
In one message Amreeki Witness mocks the curfew police have imposed in Ferguson to bring an end to the disorder, saying: 'We IS guys hate you for your freedom, eh? Just like that freedom uplifting curfew in #Ferguson? Wake up, or they'll never let you outside.'
As the social media campaign began to take hold, with dozens of radical Islamists commenting on the Ferguson protests, Amreeki Witness tweeted: 'May be time to organize the Muslims in America upon haqq and mobilize to #Ferguson. Defend the oppressed, start jihad here.'
The message attracted a large response, with one Islamist calling himself Amarka Al-Ahlam responding: 'Preach, brother. We must organize brigades in preparation for the oncoming storm. #FergusonUnderIS #JihadinFerguson.'
Amreeki Witness added: 'They cower in fear of us whilst they massacre and oppress you! It's time to strike fear into the hearts of the oppressors. #FergusonUnderIS'
News of ISIS' attempt to hijack the Ferguson protests come as Palestinian Twitter users sent messages of support to the demonstrators and gave advice on the best way to cope with the tear gas police are using to disperse crowds. The messages of support from Palestinians come amid reports that many of the Ferguson protesters were heard chanting 'Gaza Strip' as they marched through the heart of the city.
The picture looks photoshopped to me (someone must have a copy of the CNN footage - like CNN) but the tweets and taunts are real enough.
Posted on 08/19/2014 11:59 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Tuesday, 19 August 2014
ISIS Beheads American Photo Journalist, Threatens another US Captive
James Wright Foley with ISIS executioner
The Islamic State, formerly ISIS, in retribution for US air strikes in Northern Iraq, released a video of the purported beheading of intrepid American Photo Journalist James Wright Foley attired in an orange jump suit. Foley was captured in Northern Syria in November 2012. Foley was previously held captive by Gaddafi forces in Libya in 2011 for 44 days. Foley, a native of Rochester, New Hampshire was working for the on-line Boston publication, Global Post that had spent hundreds of thousands of dollars trying to find and release him. The video of his beheading was promptly taken down from YouTube under rules that Google has established as being too violent. At the conclusion of the video there is a shot of another captive American Journalist, Steven Joel Sotloff. Sotloff according to a report in the International Business Times (IBT) was captured near Aleppo on August 4, 2013. Sotloff, the IBT noted was,” a freelance journalist who had reported on Egypt, Syria, and Libya for TIME, the Christian Science Monitor, the National Interest and Foreign Policy magazine. There is also rumored to be another American aid worker captured by ISIS in the Syrian civil conflict.
Steven Joel Sotloff with ISIS Executioner
This barbaric act by ISIS is reminiscent of the beheading on February 1, 2002 in Karachi, Pakistan of Wall Street Journalist , Daniel Pearl, by Al Qaeda mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed in Karachi, Pakistan and American Contractor Nick Berg executed on May 7, 2004 in Iraq by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the founder of the predecessor of ISIS, Al Qaeda in Iraq.
The Reuters account noted the contents of the graphic ISIS video entitled, “A Message to America”:
The video opened with a clip of U.S. President Barack Obama saying he had authorized strikes in Iraq.
"Obama authorizes military operations against the Islamic State effectively placing America upon a slippery slope towards a new war front against Muslims," words appear in English and Arabic on the screen.
It showed black and white aerial footage of air strikes with text saying "American aggression against the Islamic State"
A person identified as James Foley and wearing an orange outfit is seen kneeling in the desert as a man in black dress with a black mask stands beside him, holding a knife.
"I call on my friends family and loved ones to rise up against my real killers, the U.S. government, for what will happen to me is only a result of their complacency and criminality," the kneeling man says.
The man in the mask speaks in a British accent and says: "This is James Wright Foley, an American citizen, of your country. As a government, you have been at the forefront of the aggression towards the Islamic State."
"Today your military air force is attacking us daily in Iraq. Your strikes have caused casualties amongst Muslims. You are no longer fighting an insurgency. We are an Islamic army and a state that has been accepted by a large number of Muslims worldwide."
Following his statement he beheads the kneeling man.
At the end of the video, words on the side of the screen say "Steven Joel Sotloff" as another prisoner in an orange jumpsuit is shown on screen.
Global Post published this early account this evening of the loss of their colleague, Foley, “Reported beheading of James Foley not yet verified”.
The video asserts that the alleged killing of Foley is in retaliation for recent airstrikes by the United States against IS militants in northern Iraq. In it, Foley, kneeling next to an apparent IS militant, makes comments against the US for its actions. The militant also claims to be holding journalist Steven Joel Sotloff, who went missing in Syria a year ago.
Philip Balboni, GlobalPost CEO and co-founder, made the following statement: "On behalf of John and Diane Foley, and also GlobalPost, we deeply appreciate all of the messages of sympathy and support that have poured in since the news of Jim’s possible execution first broke. We have been informed that the FBI is in the process of evaluating the video posted by the Islamic State to determine if it is authentic. ... We ask for your prayers for Jim and his family."
GlobalPost, for whom Foley had reported in Syria, has mounted an extensive international investigation since November 2012 to determine who kidnapped Foley and where he was being held. Significant research has been undertaken throughout the Middle East, including along the Syria-Turkish border, in Lebanon, in Jordan and in other locations.
“Although Global Post’s investigation at one point led us to believe that James was being held by the Syrian government, we later were given strong reason to believe he was being held by Islamic militants in Syria," Balboni said. "We withheld this information at the request of the family and on the advice of authorities cooperating in the effort to protect Jim. GlobalPost, working with a private security company, has amassed an enormous amount of information that has not been made public.”
National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden affirmed in a statement that US officials are working to authenticate the video.
"We have seen a video that purports to be the murder of U.S. citizen James Foley by ISIL. The intelligence community is working as quickly as possible to determine its authenticity. If genuine, we are appalled by the brutal murder of an innocent American journalist and we express our deepest condolences to his family and friends. We will provide more information when it is available,” the statement said.
Foley was on a freelance assignment for GlobalPost when he was abducted in northern Syria on Nov. 22, 2012. He was on his way to the Turkish border when he was stopped by a group of armed men. Foley reported for GlobalPost from Libya and Afghanistan before traveling to Syria in the early days of the now long-running civil war that has taken the lives of more than 170,000.
Foley’s last article for GlobalPost detailed the growing frustration with the war among civilians in Aleppo.
The fact of Foley’s kidnapping was revealed publicly for the first time by his parents, John and Diane Foley of Rochester, New Hampshire, on Jan. 1, 2012, two months after his abduction. The only other American whose identity has been publicly revealed is Austin Tice, a freelance reporter for the McClatchy News Service and the Washington Post, who was kidnapped in August 2012.
The Foley family’s last public statement on the kidnapping came in October 2013.
While covering the Libyan civil war in 2011, Foley and two other journalists, American Claire Gillis and Spaniard Manu Brabo, endured a 44-day captivity in April and May of that year at the hands of then Libyan strongman Col. Muammar Gaddafi. A fourth journalist, South African Anton Hammerl, was killed when the journalists were captured by Gaddafi fighters near Benghazi in eastern Libya. Foley later returned to Libya to cover Gaddafi’s fall and eventual death. Foley and GlobalPost correspondent Tracey Shelton were at the scene of Gaddafi’s capture in October 2011.
Posted on 08/19/2014 8:42 PM by Jerry Gordon
Tuesday, 19 August 2014
And If In Any Way It's Not
Then shape and form must surely follow.
Posted on 08/19/2014 8:53 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 19 August 2014
There Is Something About America
Mark Ambinder, who is editor-at-large at The Week and a contributing editor at GQ and The Atlantic, posted an opinion piece in April which has been picked up by numerous webmags including Politico, The World Muslim Congress and Islamicity. It is entitled, “The Insanity of Blaming Islam.” It is a strangely conflicted piece in which he on the one hand claims that Islam has nothing to do with the radicalization of Muslims and on the other. subscribes to the position that ideology is a prime motivator for terrorist acts committed by Muslims.
He writes that he finds “the quick and easy conversation” blaming Islam for Muslims being radicalized in America “to be so illogical and laced with bigotry.”
On the other hand he writes:
Of course, there is a global violent jihadist movement, loosely organized, that wants to recruit young men to influence policies at home and abroad and perhaps usher in the global caliphate. That ideology motivates some Muslims to kill innocent people.
By way of example he cites Peter King, the Republican chair of the Homeland Security committee, who, tasked with the issue of what is radicalizing Americans, “goes right to the religion; somehow, he slides very quickly past the possibility that something about America is radicalizing people of all sorts.”
Mr Ambinder fails to explain in any detail just what it is about America that drives people to radical acts of terrorism like the Boston bombers he cites. He merely trots out the usual suspects: America’s gun culture, “gaps in the mental health system” and of course, “the way that Americans are uncomfortable with people who are different.“ He then avers that if Islamic doctrine is to blame there would be many more such acts of terrorism. Would it not rather be the case that if America’s gun culture is to blame along with gaps in the mental health system together with American xenophobia that violent acts of terrorism would be more common? Only ~.6% of Americans are Muslims - at most.
We then come to the charge that those who implicate Islamic doctrine/ethos as being a factor in the terrorist equation are guilty of SIN. It is not just wrong to think that Islamic doctrine/ethos is a factor. It is SINFUL The sin?
Essentialism - claiming that it is part of the essential nature of an entity that it has the properties/behavior it does as opposed to claiming that it is accidental external forces that determine its properties/behavior.
It's a horrible habit: A Korean-American shoots fellow students at Virginia Tech, and suddenly, we're forced to pretend that it's OK to blame Korean-American family structure and culture for putting him over the edge, ignoring the millions of Korean-Americans who have never considered taking up arms.
The murderer Andrew Cunanan was, in Tom Brokaw's famous words, a "homicidal homosexual." See? The gay made him do it.
Yet, Mr. Ambinder goes on, “when a white kid murders dozens of children, we don't ask whether the predominant Christian religion in America somehow radicalized him.“
There is the rub. We blame Islam (the essential nature of Islam) when a Muslim commits an act of terror yet we don’t blame Christianity when a Christian commits an act of terror.
Well, maybe, Mr. Ambinder. Timothy McVeigh didn’t shout “Jesushu Akbar.” Nor did Sandy Hook shooter Adam Lanza or Manson’s zombies. I’m trying to imagine Bill Ayers shouting “Jesushu Akbar.” The Boston bombers, by contrast, readily proclaim that they are motivated by Islamic doctrine. The Fort Hood shooter shouted, “Allahu Akbar” before cutting lose with his weapon. But that is just the tip of the iceberg. Terrorist the world over proclaim their acts in the name of Allah. If a Christian commits an act of terror in the name of Christ (bombing an abortion clinic) then I’m sure Mr. Ambinder would be quick to take his word and endorse the position that it is (the essential nature) of Christian fundamentalism that is more of a danger to civic life in America than fundamentalist Islam.
Here is a CNN (that right-wing rag) report regarding terrorist acts in just the year 2011:
The report says that in 2011, a total of 10,283 terrorism attacks across the world killed 12,533 people. Terrorism also is blamed for 25,903 injuries and 5,554 kidnappings.
According to NCTC, of the 12,533 terrorism-related deaths worldwide, 8,886 were perpetrated by “Sunni extremists,” 1,926 by “secular/political/anarchist” groups, 1,519 by “unknown” factions, 170 by a category described as “other”, and 77 by “Neo-Nazi/Fascist/White Supremacist” groups.
But individual acts of terror are hardly the main point. Islamic fundamentalist movements and Mullahs across the Ummah readily proclaim their wrath against West and state their determination to destroy Western civilization. The individual acts of terrorism are part of the world wide jihadist movement. It is their Islamic duty to destroy corrupt, filthy Western civilization which translates into destroying corrupt, filthy Westerners.
As Mr. Ambinder states, the jihadist acts are “ideologically driven.” Correct, Mr. Ambinder. Ideologically driven and the ideology is driven by Islamic doctrine. Can there be a clearer example than ISIS which continues to slaughter and butcher Yazidi men, women and children even after President Obama declared a successful halt to their self-proclaimed Islamization of captured territory?
No, Mr. Ambinder. The question is not what is it about America that radicalizes Muslims but what is it about Islam that makes it a Petri dish for Islamists. The “insanity” Mr. Ambinder? The insanity is not to blame Islam.
Posted on 08/19/2014 12:08 PM by Richard Butrick
Tuesday, 19 August 2014
Community leaders call for calm as Jewish charity targeted in wave of anti-Semitic attacks
From the Express
The plea came after a sign was found posted on the window of a Jewish charity shop in Southgate, north London, apparently reading "death to Jews". Carol Levy, from the Norwood charity, said this was not the first of their shops to be targeted, with a second example of hate crime recorded at Norwood’s Edgware store as well.
Also last week, a brick was thrown through the window of Cockfosters and North Southgate Synagogue.
The incident has been reported to the police, who are now reviewing CCTV images of the area. No arrests have been made by the Met Police said they are regarding it as a "hate crime".
Norwood is a British charity which supports vulnerable children and people with learning difficulties in London and the South-East. It is the only Jewish charity in the UK to have the patronage of the Queen.
Richard Desmond, president of Norwood and owner of Express Newspapers, called the incident "unbelievable" and a "disgrace". Speaking to Vanessa Feltz on her BBC London 94.9 radio show, he said: "Norwood helps around 20,000 people in Britain, not just Jewish people – we're nothing to do with Israel – but also Arabs, Indians, Muslims, Pakistanis, Chinese. We help everyone black or white. We do not discriminate. We raise an amazing sum of £37million a year. That fundraising is mainly done by Jewish people because it's in the Jewish mantra to help people. . . "
Posted on 08/19/2014 11:43 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Tuesday, 19 August 2014
The Islamic State
Vice News brings us what is not on the nightly news, but should be.
Posted on 08/19/2014 9:52 AM by Rebecca Bynum
Tuesday, 19 August 2014
"The Israelis are the only ones the Kurds trust"
Amnon Lord writes in Mida:
A little while ago, an Israeli called his car repair shop in the village of Tira. The word Kurdi was part of the shop owner's name. The man on the other end answered in English. Only then did the Israeli realize he'd accidentally called the office of Massud Barazani, President of Kurdistan, in Irbil.
This incident is an amusing sign of a long history of positive ties between Israel and the Kurds. The intimate friendship began in 1965, and to this day serves as a model for the convergence of interests and shifting alliances in the Middle East between Iran, Iraq and other players in the region.
The man who more or less built the Kurdish army and led it in two wars against the Iraqi army is Brigadier General (res.) Tzuri Sagi. Today from his home in Ramat-Hen in the aptly named Tzanhanim (Paratroopers') Neighborhood, he is seeing the region he knows so well being torn apart by genocidal ISIS members rampaging around in their trucks. Even harder to endure is the Kurds' apparent inability to stop them.
"What's happening now is a war of Shiites against Sunnis – with the Shiite axis lead by Iran and the Sunni axis led by Turkey, and I wish both sides much success," Tzuri told me as we sat next to the old kitchen table in his house. "But within all that, we need to help the Kurds. Turkey wants the oil in Western Iraq. If the Kurds lose control of the sources of oil in their possession, their situation will become very difficult. I would even help the Kurds from the air. It could be good practice for the air force. Instead of destroying terror targets in Gaza, which I don't know what that means – attack ISIS targets. I don't know what this ISIS is; I know it has remnants of Saddam's army and they're disconnected from the Sunnis in Iran."
The weakness the Kurds are showing is surprising. In Sagi's opinion, ISIS went after the [Kurdish-speaking] Yezidis because they're the weakest group and this is the way of people in the region – to attack the weak. "The Kurds apparently became wealthy and more bourgeois and didn't understand what they're facing fast enough." [A point confirmed in a recent analysis by military historian Kenneth Pollack - A.W.]
But to truly understand the present conflict being fought in northern Iraq, where the Yezidis are fighting for their lives against murder and starvation just like the Armenians a century ago, Sagi wants to go back to 1965-66. A landmark year for the Kurds, perhaps as much as the following year was for Israel.
At the time, Sagi had left his position as commander of the fabled 890th Paratroop Battalion and was sent to Iran. "Big things are done by big people," Tzuri said, "if there's a man who's big enough and crazy enough who also goes against the establishment, then it works. I went into this game as an army officer." "This game" is almost like a movie: a breathtaking geopolitical maneuver, with a then lieutenant colonel in the IDF with a mustache who successfully blends into the mountainous region of northern Iraq, as well as connections and initiatives which cut through the red tape like a machete through cobwebs.
Built the Kurdish Army. Lt. Colonel Sagi with Mustafa Barazani. Photo reproduction: Yossi Zeliger
From Reprisal Raids to the Hills of Khuzestan
First, the background of the Great Middle Eastern game: "the DNA of many conflicts is the fact that Iranian oil is located in an area settled by Sunni Muslims known as Khuzestan. Nasser declared back in the day that Khuzestan needs to be liberated from the Persian yoke. This gave us an opening to connect with the Iranians. There were then, in the mid-1960s, good statesmen, and the connection was made. The goal was to work against the then-nationalist Arab world. The Russians established, with the help of Nasser, the Egypt-Syria-Iraq alliance to combat CENTO (the Central Treaty Organization) established by the Americans. The three countries were filled with Russian tanks. In the background, an American embargo on Israel [of direct weapons sales - A.W.]. As a result, an alliance was formed between us and the Iranians and cooperation with the Turks.
"As part of the DNA of the conflicts in the area, we had an interest in the Kurdish rebellion. In addition, we had a score to settle with the Iraqi army." Tzuri refers here to one of the failures of the 1948 War of Independence, when Iraqi units reached the areas of Kfar Kassem and Umm al-Fahm at the end of the war. Israel also did not forget the stinging defeat the Iraqi 4th brigade inflicted on the Carmeli brigade during the Battle of Jenin during that same war.
As a result of the alliance system, Tzuri says, we wanted to help the Iranians and the Kurds. "The Iranians also had issues with the Iraqis. It was important for them that the Iraqi army be far away from Khuzestan. I prepared the defensive plan for Khuzestan for the Iranians. For this, I prepared a course for special forces, so that they could cross the Iraqi border and operate them. This I only learned afterwards.
"Later I had to train the commanders of the Kurdish rebellion. So I told the Iranian commanders: why all the hassle. They were supposed to work themselves with the Kurds. Bring the Kurdish commanders to me. I was a veteran of reprisal raids, special operations. That was my background and I had good instructors with me, including one who sent the lethal packages to the German scientists [working in Egypt on missile programs among others – A.W.].
"I said, if the Kurdish commanders are here by me, we'll learn from them what's going on." And the picture was bleak - like discovering that two divisions of ISIS suddenly showed up in the Jordan Valley overnight. "It was winter. It turned out the Iraqi army was concentrating six infantry brigades in the Gali Ali Beg area. It's a channel, almost a valley within the mountainous block. They were waiting for the snow to melt so they could drive Mullah Mustafa Barzani and his men from the area.
"When I saw this I said: six brigades are waiting in the middle of the mountain region and I'm here dealing with special ops and commando raids. We need to prepare a conventional defensive battle. They brought me maps, I did a situational assessment, and I prepared a defensive plan appropriate for the Kurds, with fighting methods which matched both their character and their fighting capabilities. [But] There was no Kurdish Army that could just receive orders and act according to the plan."
Tzuri Sagi has gone down in history as the man who built the Kurdish army, and for good reason. "I built a sand table and I assigned missions to the commanders, and during the course I taught the defensive plan to them. But after they learned the mission, commanders came to me and said: but I don't have a battalion. I said: go, recruit one. The plan was based on a forward array along the slopes. Everyone knew their job, but were without forces." The main player for the Kurds was the 7.92 mm Mauser rifle, a senior partner in the slaughter of millions in the First World War, the father of the more famous Czech rifle and better than IDF rifles at the time.
Continue reading here.
Posted on 08/19/2014 8:53 AM by Geoffrey Clarfield
Tuesday, 19 August 2014
More French Comments On Islam In France And The World
Posted on 08/19/2014 8:21 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Tuesday, 19 August 2014
Rafidite Dogs Blow Up A Takfiri Blower-Upper
Think Mad Magazine's Spy v. Spy.
Posted on 08/19/2014 7:00 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 18 August 2014
A Little Tour Of Lakemba
Tim Blair, not in search of the grotesque but finding it, a few miles from Sydney, in Lakemba, here.
Posted on 08/18/2014 7:26 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 18 August 2014
ISIS Slavishly Copies What Qur'an And Sunnah Offer As An Example, But "Do Not Represent Islam"
This absurd line is being parrotted all over the place. For example, you can find an example today at the Gulf News, here. But it won't work. The bezonians of ISIS are followers -- slavish followers -- of what they know of the earliest Muslims, of Muhammad and his Companions, of the way they conducted their bloody campaigns, more than 70 of them, and the way they dealt with their enemies, who were their enemies only because they refused to submit to Islam.
Only the most depraved, stupid, and brainwashed in the non-Muslim world can any longer pretend tgo believe that Islam is not what it is reasonably taken to be by those who follow, to the letter, what is in Qur'an and Sunnah. And that dawning realization covers the world, from China to Peru. And there is nothing that the propagandists of Islalm, deploying their taqiyya and kitman, can do about it.
Posted on 08/18/2014 5:13 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 18 August 2014
Sunnis To Hezbollah: "We Are Coming To Kill You, O Rafideen"
Music to your ears, if you have some sense between them.
The story here.
Posted on 08/18/2014 5:08 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 18 August 2014
Andrew Bolt On Gaza, Hamas, And Islam
Posted on 08/18/2014 1:21 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald