Lessons From Palestinian Rule Over Bethlehem


The facts on Muslim rule over Christians (many if not most of Arab descent) where pseudo-Palestinians have governed are disturbing. It would make a Leftist Multiculturalist proud because the facts include the horrors of depopulation.

 

JRH 2/26/20

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Lessons From Palestinian Rule Over Bethlehem

 

By Dov Lipman

January 28, 2020

Honest Reporting

 

The minaret of a Muslim mosque at Bethlehem’s Manger Square is reflected in a gold crucifix during the 2002 Christmas Eve procession outside the Church of the Nativity. (Photo by David Silverman/Getty Images)

 

What is so special about Bethlehem?

 

For Jews, the town’s holiness stems from its description as the burial place of Rachel, Jacob’s beloved wife (Genesis 35:19). Later on, the story of Ruth largely revolves around Bethlehem as the childhood home of King David and the place where he was anointed as king (Samuel I 16:1-13). Jewish tradition teaches that the Messiah will come from Bethlehem (Micha 5:2-5).

 

Christian tradition teaches that Bethlehem was the birthplace of Jesus (Matthew 2:1–12, Luke 2:4–20, and John 7:42). The Church of the Nativity was built by Constantine the Great in the 4th century CE over a cave believed to be the very spot where Jesus was born.

 

Bethlehem Now and Then

 

Sadly, this holy city has also become a city of contention.

 

The 1947 United Nations Partition Plan proposed placing Bethlehem, which is just six miles southwest of Jerusalem, under UN control as part of the Jerusalem international zone. During the War of Independence in 1948 which broke out after the Arab countries rejected the partition plan, the Arab Legion took control of Bethlehem. During these 19 years the Christian population declined from in the thousands.

 

Israel took control over the city in June 1967 during the Six Day War. The Christian residents asked Israel to annex the city and make it an official part of Israel but Israel rejected the idea, holding out for the possibility of it returning to Arab hands in the context of a peace agreement.

 

Bethlehem-Jerusalem Map

 

From 1967 until 1995 Bethlehem thrived. Christians came on pilgrimages to the Church of the Nativity in the millions and Jewish worshippers flocked to the revered Tomb of Rachel. Local vendors, restaurants, and hotels experienced great success as people from all faiths felt free to visit and walk the city streets.

 

But then in 1995, Israeli negotiations with the Palestinian leadership led to the Oslo II Accords in which Israel agreed to hand over civilian and security control to six cities – Jericho, Tulkarem, Nablus, Qalqilya, and Bethlehem.

 

Bethlehem’s longtime Christian mayor, Elias Frej, begged Israeli Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin not to give the city which has a majority Christian population over to the Palestinian Authority. He was afraid what Muslim rule would do to the Christians living there. But Israel, seeking a breakthrough in its relationship with the Palestinians, handed Bethlehem over to Palestinian rule on December 21, 1995.

 

Rachel’s Tomb

 

This led to a period of horrific unrest in and around the holy city. Palestinian snipers began shooting at Jewish visitors to Rachel’s Tomb and even killed IDF soldiers who were protecting those worshippers. At times, the holy site which was fortified with concrete walls and roofs, had to be closed because of the threats from Palestinian terrorists.  At other times visitors could only travel to the holy site in armored vehicles.

 

Aside from the attacks against Rachel’s Tomb, Bethlehem became a home base for terrorist cells and the launching pad for terror attacks against Israeli citizens. Its proximity to Jerusalem made the capital vulnerable. A few examples:

 

  • Dec. 5, 2001: Palestinian terrorist Daoud Ali Ahmed Saad was sent by the Islamic Jihad base in Bethlehem to blow himself up in the heart of downtown Jerusalem. He did so, seriously injuring five civilians.

 

  • Feb. 18, 2002: Palestinian terrorist Yasser Said Moussa Uda was sent by a Fatah/Tanzim terror group in Bethlehem to blow himself up next to a roadblock on a highway outside Jerusalem. He killed an Israeli police officer and seriously injured two civilians.

 

  • March 2, 2002: Sent by a Fatah/Tanzim terror cell in the Bethlehem district, Muhammad Ahmed Abd El-Rahman Derameh was transported to Jerusalem where he blew himself up next to worshippers leaving a Jerusalem synagogue. He was driven there by Ashraf Hajajara who also lived in the Bethlehem district.

 

  • March 17, 2002: Sent by an Islamic Jihad terror cell in Bethlehem, Akram Ishak Abdullah Nabatiti blew himself up at a major Jerusalem junction, seriously injuring 25 people.

 

  • March 29, 2002: Palestinian terrorist Ayat Mohammed Latfi al-Akhras from the Bethlehem district blew herself up in a main Jerusalem supermarket, killing two civilians and injuring 22.

 

  • March 31, 2002: Fatah operatives in Bethlehem prepared a bomb in a backpack and sent a 16-year-old boy to Jerusalem. The boy  blew himself up next to a health clinic, injuring six civilians.

 

Thus, Bethlehem became a base for Palestinian attacks against Israelis in Jerusalem. The mounting  casualties forced the Israel Defense Forces to enter the city repeatedly to search and arrest the terrorists. Israeli forces also worked to dismantle the terrorist infrastructure in the city. Not only were numerous suicide bombings thwarted, security forces also uncovered mortars and infrastructure for the production of rockets.

 

Bethlehem’s Church of the Nativity

 

Israel also had no choice but to construct the security barrier which envelops Bethlehem, giving it the feeling of a city under siege. These measures sharply reduced the number of successful terror attacks, but with a Hamas terror cell strongly entrenched in Bethlehem, attempts continue.

 

Christians and their holy sites suffered terribly from the fighting, especially the Church of the Nativity during a month-long siege. On April 2, during the IDF’s Operation Defensive Shield of 2002, Israeli forces moved to arrest a number of Palestinian fugitives in the city. Fifty fled to the church compound where they held 200 monks hostage. After 38 days, the siege ended peacefully with the Palestinian fugitives agreeing to go into exile, some to Gaza and others to Europe. Israeli security forces found 40 explosives left behind in the church compound, a number of which were booby trapped.

 

Bethlehem’s Declining Christians

 

Aside from the challenges created by the security conflict, Christians see how radical Muslims persecute Christians throughout the Middle East and see that this has been happening since the Palestinian Authority was given control of the city. Examples of Palestinian Muslims intimidating their Christian neighbors include:

 

  • Land theft either by force or by forged documents, with little to no recourse in the PA justice system.

 

  • Muslim men harassing Christian women verbally or sexually.

 

  • Christian businesses forced to pay protection money.

 

  • Discrimination against Christians in job opportunities.

 

  • Churches being broken into, looted or vandalized.

 

  • Muslims who convert to Christianity face ostracism, assaults, even murder.

 

  • Kidnapping and forced conversion of Christians.

 

 

All of this has led to a significant decline in the Christian population in Bethlehem.

 

Bethlehem’s Shepherd’s Field

 

Whereas Christians used to make up a majority of Bethlehem’s residents, today, after 25 years of Palestinian control over the city, Christians make up only 20% of its population. (A similar occurrence took place in Gaza where 5,000 Christians lived in 2005 when Israel pulled out. After 14 years of Hamas rule,  only 1,000 Christians remain, and churches are often demolished.)

 

The situation in now Palestinian controlled Bethlehem stands in stark contrast to Israeli controlled Jerusalem, just six miles to the north. In Jerusalem the Christian population can practice their faith freely and securely. The Jerusalem municipality even provides free Christmas trees to Christian residents.

 

In fact, Israel is the only country in the Middle East in which the native Christian population increased since 1948. By the end of 2019, Israel’s Christian population stood at 177,000, having grown 1.5 percent according to the Central Bureau of Statistics.

 

The lesson is clear. Christians thrive with total religious freedom in Israeli-controlled areas, and suffer when Israel yields control to radical Palestinian forces.

 

Featured image: Rachel’s Tomb via Wikimedia Commons; Church of the Nativity CC BY-SA Dan; Shepherd’s Field CC BY-NC fabcom;

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BLOG EDITOR: I’ve apparently been placed in restricted Facebook Jail! The restriction was relegated after criticizing Democrats for supporting abortion in one post and criticizing Virginia Dems for gun-grabbing legislation and levying protester restrictions. Rather than capitulate to Facebook censorship by abandoning the platform, I choose to post and share until the Leftist censors ban me completely. Conservatives are a huge portion of Facebook. If more or all Conservatives are banned, it will affect the Facebook advertising revenue paradigm. SO FIGHT CENSORSHIP BY SHARE – SHARE – SHARE!!! Facebook notified me in pop-up on 1/20/20: “You’re temporarily restricted from joining and posting to groups that you do not manage until April 18 at 7:04 PM.”

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Female Genital Mutilation and Islamic Social Norms


I realize there are Muslims that have adopted Western norms particularly in Western nations. Nonetheless, unless a Westernized Muslim is willing to condemn Quranic, Hadith, Sira or Shariah practices that are contrary to Western Culture, Western norms and Western Laws (and from my perspective – U.S. Constitutional Law) those Muslims are underserving of the benefits of residing in the West.

Yeah I know –  Multiculturalists who care little of the traditions the West has provided are beginning to experience their blood boiling. I live in America thus I am not Leftist Multicultural thought and speech laws – at least not subject for now. Americans keep voting American Constitutional Laws for American Courts.

 

JRH 2/17/20

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Female Genital Mutilation and Islamic Social Norms

 

By Paul Sutliff

February 15, 2020

American Thinker

 

On January 30th of this year, a 12-year-old girl in Egypt died as a result of her parents having Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) performed on her. Egypt has had a law outlawing the practice since 2008. The parents have been charged.  This law was written to protect females because Islamic social norms permit and encourage this practice.

 

According to Ian Askew, World Health Organization Director for the Department of Reproductive Health and Research:

 

FGM describes all procedures that involve the partial or total removal of external genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.  It has no health benefits.

 

More than 200 million girls and women alive today are living with FGM and many are at risk of suffering the associated negative health consequences as a result.

 

These include death, severe bleeding and problems urinating.  Longer-term consequences range from cysts and infections to complications in childbirth and increased risk of newborn deaths.

 

FGM is a grave violation of the human rights of girls and women.

 

Another term used for FGM is female circumcision.  Some countries prefer the term FGC, as it is seen as “more neutral.”  (The “C” being a reference to “cutting.”)  This “more neutral” term allows their medical personnel to package FGM into the “birth package.”  Ebony Ridell Bamber, the head of advocacy and policy at Orchid Project, a UK-based NGO working towards ending FGM, states that.  “It really contributes to legitimizing and entrenching the practice even further.”

 

In Islam, legitimization comes when shariah, Islamic law, endorses and promotes a practice.  Under shariah, female circumcision is required of Muslim females. This is documented in Reliance of the Traveller:

 

e4.3   Circumcision is obligatory (O: for both men and women.  For men it consists of removing the prepuce from the penis, and for women, removing the prepuce (Ar. Bazr) of the clitoris (n: not the clitoris itself, as some mistakenly assert).  (A: Hanbalis hold that circumcision of women is not obligatory but sunna, while Hanafis consider it a mere courtesy to the husband.)”

 

Islamic scholars have been found using this piece to declare to non-Muslims that shariah does not agree with FGM, going so far as to claim it is unIslamic if carried out to the extreme and totally removing the clitoris:

 

Female circumcision, known pejoratively in its extreme form as female genital mutilation or cutting, is not prescribed in the Quran and there are no authentic prophetic traditions recommending the practice.  The basis in Islamic law is that it is not permissible to cause bodily harm and any such practice of female circumcision proven to be harmful would be unlawful.

 

This is very deceptive.  Let’s look at what the abbreviations mean in the above section of shariah:

 

A: …  comment by Sheikh ‘Abd al-Wakil Durubi

Ar.     Arabic

n: …  remark by the translator

O: …  excerpt from the commentary of Sheikh ‘Umar Barakat

 

Taking the commentary of the translator out, the passage now reads:

 

e4. 3    Circumcision is obligatory (O: for both men and women.  For men it consists of removing the prepuce from the penis, and for women, removing the prepuce (Ar.  Bazr) of the clitoris.

 

Many other hadiths also back up the obligation for FGM under Shariah.  For example:

 

  • Jami` at-Tirmidhi Vol. 1 Book 1 #109

 

Aishah narrated that: the Prophet said: “When the circumcised meets the circumcised then Ghusl [full-body ritual purification] is required.”

 

 

Yahya related to me from Malik from Ibn Shihab from Said ibn al- Musayyab that Umar ibn al-Khattab and Uthman ibn Affan and A’isha, the wife of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, used to say, “When the circumcised part touches the circumcised part, ghusl is obligatory.”

 

  • Sahih al-Bukhari 6599, 6600

 

Abu Huraira: Allah’s Messenger said, “No child is born but has the Islamic Faith, but its parents turn it into a Jew or a Christian.  It is as you help the animals give birth.  Do you find among their offspring a mutilated one before you mutilate them yourself.”

 

[Burka (or is it Niqab) clad Muslim gals]

 

To say that FGM only happens in third-world countries ignores the sad and sorry truth that several countries have passed laws forbidding this cruelty to their children. Egypt passed a law against FGM in 2008 and was amended in 2016. But by 2015, a “government survey discovered that 87% of Egyptian women and girls aged between 15 and 49 have been mutilated, or as the Egyptian government put it, “circumcised.”

 

February 6th was the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation. This annual day of awareness was commemorated this year by the German news source DW.com’s article, “Female genital mutilation feels ‘like living in a dead body’ by Shadia Abdelmoneim, which describes how a midwife performed FGM on her without her consent after the birth of her third child in Sudan:

 

It led to a lengthy period of shock thereafter where she found it difficult to trust anybody, but Shadia also vividly recalls the moment she realized what had happened.

 

“I wanted to go to the toilet, but something wasn’t right.  I couldn’t walk and was in considerable pain.  When I saw what she had done, I was shocked.  She’d cut everything open and then sewn it closed.  I had no idea what to do.”

 

Shadia, already fighting against female genital mutilation and for women’s rights as an activist in Sudan, was in her mid 30s at the time.  She started living in a constant state of fear for her three daughters; she could barely let them out of her sight.

 

“How could women do something like that to one another, how?” she asks, her eyes welling up with tears.  “Being circumcised is like living in a dead body.”

 

Dr.  Cornelia Strunz, who works at the Desert Flower Center, met Shadia when she came to the center for help, said Shadia needed surgery to help her live with this mutilation. According to Dr.  Strunz, there are many possible problems that result from FGM.

 

Many women have problems emptying their bladder after FGM.  Menstrual blood can’t drain properly.  For some, sex becomes practically impossible.  Women can also develop fistulas — connections between two body parts which should not exist at all in normal circumstances.  One example would be a link between the vagina and rectum, leading to them passing stools through the vagina.  Obviously, that’s not very easy to live with.

 

Social norms that allow for FGM conflict with several social norms of Western civilization.  It denies a women’s rights to have control over her own body, as it is a requirement under shariah.  It destroys a woman’s ability to enjoy partaking in sexual activity when the woman marries.  This makes the act a duty and not a pleasure. The act itself violates the Hippocratic Oath “to do no harm.” In countries where FGM is banned, parents/guardians who have this done to their own daughters are denying the validity of laws made by men.

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BLOG EDITOR: I’ve apparently been placed in restricted Facebook Jail! The restriction was relegated after criticizing Democrats for supporting abortion in one post and criticizing Virginia Dems for gun-grabbing legislation and levying protester restrictions. Rather than capitulate to Facebook censorship by abandoning the platform, I choose to post and share until the Leftist censors ban me completely. Conservatives are a huge portion of Facebook. If more or all Conservatives are banned, it will affect the Facebook advertising revenue paradigm. SO FIGHT CENSORSHIP BY SHARE – SHARE – SHARE!!! Facebook notified me in pop-up on 1/20/20: “You’re temporarily restricted from joining and posting to groups that you do not manage until April 18 at 7:04 PM.”

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Paul Sutliff is a federally recognized expert on Civilization Jihad. His blog can be found at https://paulsutliff.blogspot.com/. You can request him as a speaker at http://paulsutliff.com. Paul’s books are on Amazon.

 

© American Thinker 2020

 

Re-litigating the Holy Land Foundation Trial?


Yesterday (2/12/20) Brigitte Gabriel via ACT for America sent out an email alerting her readers that terrorist supporting Islamic organizations are beginning public and legal pressure to remove their Islamic terrorist connections associated with the Holy Land Foundation trial that ended with several guilty verdicts for supporting Hamas Islamic terrorism.

 

The ACT for America website picked up a 2/7/20 Center for Security Policy (CSP) story on the attempt to erase the unindicted co-conspirator list in America.

 

JRH 2/13/20

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Re-litigating the Holy Land Foundation Trial?

 

Sent Brigitte Gabriel

Sent Feb 12, 2020, 4:34 AM

Email from ACT for America

 

Hamas Linked “Bridge Initiative” wants to re-litigate the Holy Land Foundation Trial

 

The ultimate goal of the Bridge Initiative is to remove Hamas/CAIR and other radical Islamic organizations from the designated terrorist list. The Bin Talal Center claims that the terrorist designation raises issues about “due process, equal protection, judicial deference, the chilling of free speech…”

 

This is how the EU weasels out of designating Hezbollah as a terrorist entity!

 

I’ve detailed where projects like the Bridge Initiative get their funding extensively in my book, “Because They Hate.” In 2006 alone, Georgetown University received 28.1 million US dollars from Saudi Arabia to fund programs like their Bridge Initiative.

 

In 2009, at the request of the White House, Georgetown University covered all religious symbols during an address given by Obama — Georgetown is the oldest Catholic and Jesuit institution of higher education in the United States.

 

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Hamas-linked “Bridge Initiative” wants to re-litigate Holy Land Foundation trial

 

Georgetown University building

 

By  Kyle Shideler

Originally Published on the Center for Security Policy

CSP Date 2/7/20

ACT for America

 

The Bridge Initiative, a project of the Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim Christian Understanding, continues to embarrass its host, Georgetown University, this time by publishing a “factsheet” in defense of the convicted Hamas fundraising organization known as the Holy Land Foundation.

 

The sheet is short on facts, and long on emotional appeal. It distorts basic facts about the Holy Land Foundation case, in which the nation’s largest Islamic charity and five of its employees were convicted on 104 felony counts, including providing material support for the terrorist organization Hamas.

 

While the Bridge Initiative wants to relitigate the HLF case, wholly endorsing arguments made by the defense that were soundly rejected by judge and jury, ultimately what it seeks to do in their factsheet is argue that Hamas should not be designated as a terrorist organization at all. They likewise condemn U.S. Treasury Terrorism designation efforts in general, despite these efforts being a mainstay of the effort to combat terrorism since 9/11.

 

The Jewish Journal describes the project’s factsheet noting,

 

“The fact sheet says that Hamas ‘was founded in Palestine in 1987 as a political and social organization, with an armed wing aimed at resisting the Israeli occupation of Palestine.’ It acknowledges that the United States designated Hamas a terror organization in 1997, but then states that designating Hamas as a terror group “has been criticized by legal scholars as being politicized by the State Department, and as raising issues concerning due process, equal protection, judicial deference, the chilling of free speech, and having ‘disparate impact on the Arab Muslim community.’”

 

The defenders of Hamas have long relied on the false distinction that the group has an “armed wing” which engages in violence, claiming the majority of the group merely performs otherwise legal work in the social and political spheres.  Ironically, Hamas’ own founder rejected the distinction between armed and unarmed wings, and the organization is tightly integrated. Terrorist activities take place under the direction of the group’s political leadership, as Matt Levitt, Author of “Hamas: Politics, Charity and Terrorism in Service of Jihad” has ably documented.

 

It’s no surprise that Bridge Initiative would be playing the role of Hamas apologist, given that its founder, John Esposito, has a history with the very Hamas network of which the Holy Land Foundation was the prominent member. Esposito served as a member of the advisory editorial board for the journal of the United Association for Studies and Research (UASR). UASR, which the federal government described as a Hamas “think tank”, was founded by Mousa Abu Marzook, currently deputy chairman of Hamas’ political bureau. UASR’s executive director and the editor of the journal of which Esposito was an advisor, Ahmad Yousef, who went on to serve as a Hamas spokesman.

 

Esposito’s Bridge Initiative is not alone among groups with questionable ties seeking to memory-hole the reality of the Holy Land Foundation Trial. The Charity and Security Network (CSN), a project of the Center for Effective Government (formerly OMB Watch), has been a leader in this regard. CSN also attempts to paint the Holy Land Foundation case as an overly broad smear of Muslim charities. As Sam Westrop of Middle East Forum has ably demonstrated, however, CSN itself receives funding and support from several charities with known links to terror finance.

 

First designated for its terror ties in 2001, and convicted in 2008, it seems that HLF’s partisans believe the time is right to proclaim these Hamas financiers as champions of virtue wrongly convicted. They are no doubt counting on the fact that few in 2020 remember the long trial or the copious documentary and surveillance evidence the government produced in the case. They likewise are convinced of their ability to falsely slander those experts who have studied the case as Islamophobes and bigots.

 

But it isn’t going to work.

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BLOG EDITOR: I’ve apparently been placed in restricted Facebook Jail! The restriction was relegated after criticizing Democrats for supporting abortion in one post and criticizing Virginia Dems for gun-grabbing legislation and levying protester restrictions. Rather than capitulate to Facebook censorship by abandoning the platform, I choose to post and share until the Leftist censors ban me completely. Conservatives are a huge portion of Facebook. If more or all Conservatives are banned, it will affect the Facebook advertising revenue paradigm. SO FIGHT CENSORSHIP BY SHARE – SHARE – SHARE!!! Facebook notified me in pop-up on 1/20/20: “You’re temporarily restricted from joining and posting to groups that you do not manage until April 18 at 7:04 PM.”

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The Netherlands: The Geert Wilders Show Trial Continues


Most European Union (EU) nations operate under a Parliamentary political system rather than a Federal political system as in the USA. As such the Parliamentary system in the Netherlands is now being exposed in doing its version of a Trump-frame against Party for Freedom (Dutch acronym – PVV. Interesting irony on Wikipedia PVV info: the English Wikipedia listing is quite negative while the Dutch language Wikipedia [I used Google Translate] is more informational and balanced) leader Geert Wilders. WHY? Wilders is anti-Multiculturalist and anti-Muslim immigration all to preserve Western Culture.

 

It is extremely apparent Netherlands (and EU) power elites fear a drain-the-swamp avalanche if Wilders ever wins enough of a Parliamentary election to be the Netherlands Prime Minister.

 

The Gatestone Institute authored by Soeren Kern reports on exposé of Netherlands government corruption leveled against Wilders by Amsterdam-based newspaper De Volkskrant.

 

JRH 2/8/20

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BLOG EDITOR: I’ve apparently been placed in restricted Facebook Jail! The restriction was relegated after criticizing Democrats for supporting abortion in one post and criticizing Virginia Dems for gun-grabbing legislation and levying protester restrictions. Rather than capitulate to Facebook censorship by abandoning the platform, I choose to post and share until the Leftist censors ban me completely. Conservatives are a huge portion of Facebook. If more or all Conservatives are banned, it will affect the Facebook advertising revenue paradigm. SO FIGHT CENSORSHIP BY SHARE – SHARE – SHARE!!! Facebook notified me in pop-up on 1/20/20: “You’re temporarily restricted from joining and posting to groups that you do not manage until April 18 at 7:04 PM.”

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The Netherlands: The Geert Wilders Show Trial Continues

 

By Soeren Kern

February 8, 2020 at 5:00 am

Gatestone Institute

  • The emails indicate that Prime Minister Mark Rutte himself was involved in the decision to prosecute Wilders.

 

  • “Minister Van der Steur has deliberately withheld those documents, as is apparent from these documents. Moreover, it appears that another Justice Minister, Minister Opstelten, lied…” — Geert Wilders, February 5, 2020

 

  • “Mr. Presiding Judge, the Minister of Justice interfered in detail with my conviction. The documents even state that the Ministry of Justice instructed the public prosecutor — you will find the word ‘instruct’ in the documents….” — Geert Wilders, February 5, 2020

 

  • “And every day that this trial continues and you do not punish the conspiring prosecution, and the Ministry of Justice for their lies and haggling with the principles of an independent, fair and balanced trial, by declaring them inadmissible, every day this trial continues is a black day in the history of Dutch justice.” — Geert Wilders, February 5, 2020

 

  • “In the Wilders case, we certainly do not have to rely on the judge to agree with Wilders and to reach the conclusion that there has been a political trial, which is therefore not legally valid…. Wilders case appears to have been pre-cooked in the cabinet itself…. [Prime Minister] Rutte himself was involved…. The lying and spinning must stop somewhere…. This rule of law, in which judges and prosecutors receive instructions by the politicians on how to act, is rotten from within.” – Joost Niemöller, Dutch Journalist, Ongehoordnederland.nl, February 5, 2020

Newly released documents show that senior members of the Dutch government — including the former prime minister and justice minister — applied political pressure on public prosecutors to indict Geert Wilders, leader of the Party for Freedom for “hate speech.” Pictured: Wilders (left) sits next to current Prime Minister Mark Rutte at a meeting of political party leaders at the Dutch House of Representatives on March 16, 2017 in The Hague. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

 

Newly released documents show that senior members of the Dutch government — including the prime minister and two former justice ministers — applied political pressure on public prosecutors to indict Geert Wilders, leader of the Party for Freedom (Partij voor de Vrijheid, PVV), for hate speech for comments he made about Islam and Moroccan immigrants.

 

The documents, which the government turned over to the Amsterdam-based newspaper De Volkskrant in compliance with a Freedom of Information request, appear to confirm long-standing allegations by Wilders that the government’s decade-long legal war against him is far from a principled pursuit of justice, and instead politically motivated aimed at silencing his criticism of multiculturalism and mass migration from the Muslim world.

 

On February 3, De Volkskrant reported that the government documents — numbering nearly 500 pages — show that as early as 2008, then-Justice Minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin was “intensively involved” in the decision to prosecute Wilders.

 

According to De Volkskrant, the Public Prosecution Service (Openbaar Ministerie, OM) found nothing illegal about Wilders statements, but Hirsch Ballin pressed the OM on three separate occasions to change its assessment.

 

In June 2008, the OM dismissed more than 40 criminal complaints against Wilders on the grounds that his statements were made “in the context of political debate” and therefore “not of a punishable nature.”

 

In January 2009, the Amsterdam Appeals Court, the second-highest legal authority in the Netherlands, overturned the OM’s decision and ruled that Wilders could be tried for inciting hatred. Wilders said that it was a “black day for myself and for freedom of speech.”

 

The first trial against Wilders began on October 4, 2010. He was accused of insulting religious and ethnic groups and inciting hatred and discrimination for describing Islam as fascist and comparing the Koran to Adolf Hitler’s book Mein Kampf. Wilders argued that his statements were directed at Islam as an ideology and not at individual Muslim believers.

 

The trial collapsed on October 22, 2010, after it emerged that Tom Schalken, one of the judges in the case, had tried to sway a potential witness.

 

The retrial began on February 6, 2011 with three new judges. Wilders said that his trial was about preserving freedom of expression in the West.

 

On June 23, 2011, Wilders was acquitted of all charges. Judge Marcel van Oosten ruled that the statements by Wilders, while “gross and denigrating,” did not meet the standard of hate speech and as such were “acceptable within the context of public debate.”

 

Despite the acquittal, the government’s harassment of Wilders continued. Internal government emails recently published by RTL Nieuws show that Hirsch Ballin’s successor, Justice Minister Ivo Opstelten, repeatedly pressured the OM to bring a new case against Wilders. Opstelten, his aides and the prosecutor repeatedly consulted with each other before the decision to prosecute Wilders a second time was made in the fall of 2014. The OM has always denied that it was subject to outside political interference; the emails show that the OM denials were untruthful. An email sent by the lead prosecutor, Wouter Bos, on October 8, 2014, warned: “This must not leak!”

 

Other government emails show that the decision to bring a new case against Wilders was discussed as early as March 2014 in the Council of Ministers, the executive council of Dutch government, formed by all the ministers, including the prime minister. The emails indicate that Prime Minister Mark Rutte himself was involved in the decision to prosecute Wilders.

 

On March 18, 2016, Wilders went on trial again for allegedly inciting hatred against Moroccan immigrants. Prosecutors said that in March 2014, Wilders, while campaigning in The Hague, asked a crowd of supporters if they wanted more or fewer Moroccans in the Netherlands. The crowd said fewer. Wilders responded: “We’ll take care of that.”

 

Prosecution spokeswoman Ilse de Heer said that Wilders “targeted a specific race, which is considered a crime.” Wilders countered that his comments referred to Moroccan criminals, not to Moroccans in general, and that, in any event, Moroccans are not a race.

 

On December 9, 2016, Wilders was found guilty of inciting discrimination. The court, however, imposed no form of punishment; it said that the verdict was sufficient penalty. The Public Prosecutor demanded a fine of €5,000 ($5,500). Both Wilders and the Prosecutor appealed.

 

Since then, Wilders has been entangled in a protracted legal process that shows no signs of ending anytime soon. In an appeal hearing on February 5, 2020, Wilders voiced his anger over the political nature of the case against him:

 

“Presiding Judge, members of the court: The shamelessness of the Public Prosecution Office knows no boundaries. In a report we received yesterday and heard about today, they claim — one-and-a-half days after they received the documents from the Ministry of Justice — that nothing is wrong, that nothing has been found that indicates political influence.

 

“Rarely have I seen attorney generals who are so damaging to the rule of law, who don’t care about a fair trial. They are blinded by their hatred for me and the PPV. These kinds of people, like those two attorney generals, ensure that the trust of ordinary people, the common man and woman in the Netherlands, in the public prosecutor and the judiciary has fallen to a low point.

 

“The Public Prosecutor says that there is nothing wrong. Shame on you, attorney generals. What we all know now is enough to immediately end this political process, this charade….

 

“We already knew, Mr. Presiding Judge and members of the court, that officials from the Ministry of Justice, under the responsibility of former Justice Minister Ivo Opstelten, had adjusted press releases from the public prosecutor. That it was Minister Opstelten himself who wanted two press releases. That his officials had made a legal analysis of this case. And shared this with the public prosecutor.

 

“We already knew that they had helped the public prosecutor refute the defenses of the defense. That, for example, the phrase, ‘we will arrange that’ was brought to the attention of the public prosecutor by the Ministry of Justice. That they wanted to see the requisites in advance to provide comments.

 

“And now there are 475 pieces again. And indeed, we have not been able to read all of them, I mean, we could hardly read any of the pieces. But if I only look at what the media writes about it, such as Volkskrant or RTL journalist Pieter Klein, then only more shocking things have come to the surface.

 

“It even appears now that it [the case] has been discussed in the Council of Ministers, Mr. Presiding Judge. In the Council of Ministers. How much more political does it get?

 

“The documents show that a senior official of the Ministry of General Affairs of Prime Minister Rutte informed a senior official of Ministry of Justice of Minister Opstelten that the Prime Minister expects the Minister of Justice to be able to say something meaningful during the Council of Ministers of March 21, 2014 about whether the prosecution of Wilders is promising.

 

“How promising it is! Promising: according to the dictionary, I looked it up, that also means likely, successful. It has a positive connotation. The Council of Ministers, Mr. Presiding Judge. This concerns an opposition leader in the House of Representatives. That is shameful, but that is, unfortunately, not unique, because we also know from the documents that we received yesterday that it was — in relation to the Wilders 1 trial, but I still want to have mentioned it, to indicate what they are capable of — that it was then Justice Minister Hirsch Ballin who requested legal advice three times because he did not like the earlier advice that it was impossible to prosecute Wilders. He repeated his requests for advice until he received the advice he wanted.

 

“Back to this trial. Apart from the fact that it was discussed in the Council of Ministers — words cannot express, it does not become much more political and corrupt — former [Justice] Minister Van der Steur, the documents show, deliberately and personally stopped the publication, on the basis of the Dutch Freedom of Information Act (WOB), of an official message about my persecution. Minister Van der Steur stopped that.

 

“According to the documents, the decision on the WOB request was delayed until after the decision of the Court of First Instance. Until after my conviction. Imagine that. Mafia practices. Pure political influence of the worst kind. A minister who deliberately withholds relevant and possibly exculpatory documents until after the conviction. Words really cannot express…

 

“If we had received those documents earlier and also all the other documents requested on that basis, and now also obtained with the permission of your court, then perhaps it might not have come to a conviction at all…then the court might not have decided on a conviction in the first instance.

 

“Minister Van der Steur has deliberately withheld those documents, as is apparent from these documents. Moreover, it appears that another Justice Minister, Minister Opstelten, lied when he said during his interrogation by the commissioner, that outside the Council of Ministers — you can find it literally in the reports — he never spoke about this matter with other ministers.

 

“The documents that we received yesterday show that he did indeed talk to other ministers about this outside the Council of Ministers, namely with Interior Minister Ronald Plasterk.

 

“Mr. Presiding Judge, the Minister of Justice interfered in detail with my conviction. The documents even state that the Ministry of Justice instructed the public prosecutor — you will find the word ‘instruct’ in the documents — when and at what time they had to call me on October 9, 2014, to say that I was a suspect. For a phone call to me, saying that I was a suspect, the Public Prosecutor’s Office was instructed by the Ministry of Justice when and at what time and on what day that had to happen.

 

“My case has been dealt with in detail. And this whole trial, just like the Wilders 1 trial, is permeated with political influence. From phone calls, up to the Council of Ministers, and to ministers who withheld or delayed documents, an opposition leader from the national parliament has been prosecuted for ten years that way.

 

“Politics have always been involved, from civil servants to ministers and the Council of Ministers. Every day that this trial continues and you do not punish the conspiring prosecution, and the Ministry of Justice for their lies and haggling with the principles of an independent, fair and balanced trial, by declaring them inadmissible, every day this trial continues is a black day in the history of Dutch justice.

 

“This trial will have to stop today. I have said it many times. To be honest, I find it incomprehensible that this has not been decided long ago by declaring the prosecution inadmissible. If in the unfortunate event, even after today, you want to continue with this trial again, then indeed, and you have just said that, Mr. Presiding Judge, we need ample time to read all those documents and possibly based on those documents, also call new witnesses, like Minister Van der Steur. Like the prime minister. Like all the people involved.

 

“It is clear from these documents that they are more involved than we already knew. And see the minutes, the records, of the Council of Ministers as well. It appears to have been discussed. It has been said by the General Affairs official against the Justice official: ‘[Prime Minister Mark] Rutte wants to say something about the chances of this trial, Ivo [Opstelten].’ And Ivo went to the Council of Ministers on March 21. This has always been denied. Denied during the interrogations. Now it appears to have just happened. I want to see those documents from the Council of Ministers. I want to talk to people about it. It is not just about someone who steals a roll of licorice. It is about the opposition leader in the Dutch parliament whose persecution has been influenced up to the Council of Ministers.

 

“I want to hear the truth. I want to hear more than the truth about the political influence in this trial so that this trial is taken off the table as quickly as possible.

 

Veteran Dutch journalist Joost Niemöller wrote:

 

“On February 3, just before another hearing in the endless criminal case against Wilders, a bulk of internal documents were dropped by Justice Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus which relate to the official and political involvement in this trial. These documents were intended for the House of Representatives and are now public.

 

“If the Chamber takes its task seriously, it must investigate the political nature of this lawsuit. That is emphatically not an investigation into the trial itself — after all, we have a separation of powers here — but an investigation into the political role behind the continuation of this trial….

 

“In the Wilders case, we certainly do not have to rely on the judge to agree with Wilders and to reach the conclusion that there has been a political trial, which is therefore not legally valid…. After the internal documents released, the issue has become even more flammable.

 

“The Wilders case appears to have been pre-cooked in the cabinet itself…. [Prime Minister] Rutte himself was involved…. The lying and spinning must stop somewhere.

 

“The anger of Wilders in court was only too understandable, and all too justified. It is the anger of more and more Dutch people. Even in the mainstream media it is now recognized that this political pre-cooking goes beyond all limits.

 

“This is the umpteenth example in which democracy is excluded by the judiciary, because the judiciary and the OM have become an extension of politics.

 

“This point is increasingly emphasized by, among others, Forum for Democracy leader Thierry Baudet, whose hypocritical opponents accuse him of rejecting the rule of law.

 

“This rule of law, in which judges and prosecutors receive instructions by the politicians on how to act, is rotten from within.”

 

Wilders’ trial will continue on March 23. Four additional hearings are scheduled for April. It remains unclear when his trial will end.

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______________________

Soeren Kern is a Senior Fellow at the New York-based Gatestone Institute. Follow Soeren Kern on Twitter and Facebook

 

© 2020 Gatestone Institute. All rights reserved. The articles printed here do not necessarily reflect the views of the Editors or of Gatestone Institute. No part of the Gatestone website or any of its contents may be reproduced, copied or modified, without the prior written consent of Gatestone Institute. [Blog Editor: Full disclosure – I did not seek permission and post will be removed if Gatestone Institute requests so.]

 

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Intro to ‘Israeli sovereignty and the fate of the Trump plan’


Intro by John R. Houk

Title by Caroline Glick

Intro © February 7, 2020

 

The topic: the Trump Administration’s The Deal of the Century as laid out in the White House preliminary framework entitled, “Peace to Prosperity: A Vision to Improve the Lives of the Palestinian and Israeli People”.

 

For me there is no getting around the 181 page document’s declaration that a Palestinian State would have its capital city in an Eastern portion of Jerusalem. I have read advocates of the peace deal claim it will be parts of Jerusalem already dominated by Arabs. If that geographical Arab domination includes the Temple Mount those physical dimensions MUST BE rejected by Jews and Christians.

 

Jerusalem – 1948 Quarters and Divided 1949-67

 

BUT the part of the plan I am beginning to slowly inch toward maybe is the part that is driving Islamic terrorist leadership Arabs calling themselves Palestinians nuts is a significant swath of Jewish Settlement areas of Judea-Samaria (labelled the West Bank by conquering Jordanians in 1948) becoming a part of sovereign Israel which must be recognized for the plan to move forward.

 

The God Plan for Israel

 

On a personal level it is my belief for Israel is God’s plan of the Promised Land to the descendants Abraham, Isaac and Jacob/Israel. That means Arabs who refuse accept God’s plan should leave to Arab lands that practice hateful and intolerant Islam.

 

BUT I live in America and really don’t have a vote.

 

Caroline Glick tackles the duplicity of the Israeli Left which she indicates might be taking cues from the American Dem Party. If accurate, God have mercy on Israel and its probably brainwashed Left-Wing voters.

 

JRH 2/7/20

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Israeli sovereignty and the fate of the Trump plan

Trump-Kushner-Bibi

 

By Caroline Glick

02/07/2020

Originally published at Israel Hayom.

CarolineGlick.com

 

On Wednesday morning, NeverTrump propagandist Bill Kristol told his MSNBC audience that Democratic chances of victory over US President Donald Trump will rise if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is defeated in Israel’s elections on March 2.

 

Along the same lines, if Netanyahu fails to apply Israeli sovereignty to the Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria before the election, not only will he almost certainly lose those elections, his defeat will bury Trump’s peace plan and harm Trump’s reelection chances.

 

To understand why this is the case it is first necessary to understand the nature of the Blue and White party and its relationship to Trump and his peace plan.

 

After Trump’s peace plan was published, Israelis discovered significant problems with the map attached to the plan. Among other things, the map places large sections of Highway 60, which crosses Judea and Samaria from south to north outside Israeli jurisdiction. If left uncorrected, the designation will endanger the security of tens of thousands of Israelis whose communities will be rendered isolated enclaves. Since ensuring Israel’s ability to defend itself and its citizens on a permanent basis is a major goal of the plan, this omission was obviously an oversight. Netanyahu announced this week that he has assembled a team to work on the map.

 

So long as the map is not adjusted, members of Likud and other parties in the right-religious bloc Netanyahu leads will be unable to vote in favor of the plan, despite their support for Trump and for the plan overall.

 

This then brings us to Benny Gantz and his party.

 

Just before Gantz traveled to Washington to meet with Trump at the White House last Monday, it came out that his top campaign strategists, Ronen Tzur and Joel Benenson had both separately published multiple posts on Twitter viciously attacking Trump. Both men compared him to Hitler, called him a Russian agent and a racist. In other words, both men parroted Democratic talking points against Trump. (After his posts were reported, Tzur claimed that he no longer believed the things he had written.)

 

Whereas Tzur – like every garden variety Israeli leftist politico – apparently follows the Democrats on everything related to American public affairs automatically, Benenson shapes Democratic positions. Benenson served as Barack Obama’s senior political strategist in the 2008 and 2012 elections and as Hillary Clinton’s senior political strategist in 2016.

 

In 2015, Wikileaks published Clinton’s campaign manager John Podesta’s emails. Several email chains included internal campaign discussions in which Benenson participated. In two discussions, Benenson advised Clinton not to mention Israel in public events.

 

Now Benenson is directing Blue and White’s campaign, and there is little reason for surprise at the seamlessness of his move from Obama and Clinton to Gantz. The Israeli left has been intertwined with the Democratic Party.

In 2016 when Gantz was still a private citizen, he was strongly encouraged to enter the political fray by a public service company called Darcheinu, or “Our Way.”

 

Darcheinu is the successor to two organizations – V-15 and One Voice. One Voice was established in 2003 by Daniel Lubetsky, a Mexican-American Jewish businessman with close ties to the Obama administration. Lubetsky founded One Voice at the height of the Palestinian terror war to advance the establishment of a Palestinian state and an Israeli withdrawal to the 1949 armistice lines. PLO Chief and Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s son Yasser Mahmoud Abbas is a member of One Voice’s Trustees Advisory Council.

 

Ahead of the 2015 Knesset elections, One Voice formed V-15 as a spinoff to run a campaign to “change the government” – that is, to bring down Netanyahu. V-15’s campaign was directed by Jeremy Bird, Obama’s field director in his presidential races. It came under scrutiny from the US Senate when it was discovered that the Obama’ State Department funded its efforts.

 

Establishing a Palestinian state and fomenting an Israeli evacuation of Judea and Samaria replete with the expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Israeli Jews from their homes is a goal all three groups share with the Democratic Party. And like the Democrats, the goal places all three groups in opposition to Trump. Trump’s plan makes the establishment of a Palestinian state contingent on significant changes in Palestinian actions and positions. It also foresees Israel retaining permanently all Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria and the areas surrounding them as well as the Jordan Valley.

 

In recent years, Darcheinu continued V-15’s efforts to bring down Netanyahu. In 2017-18, it sponsored the weekly leftist protests outside Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit’s home demanding he indicts Netanyahu. Darcheinu also funded and promoted the 2018 campaign by the far-left Commanders for Israeli Security calling for the establishment of a Palestinian state and an Israeli withdrawal to the 1949 armistice lines.

 

Until 2019, Darcheinu was led by Israeli businessman Kobi Richter. Richter was one of the central activists responsible for forming the Blue and White Party last year. In an interview with Globes, Richter said that he paid for the polls that convinced Gantz to join forces with Moshe Yaalon, Gabi Ashkenazy and Yair Lapid.

 

According to officials with knowledge of the events, Gantz was well-aware of the substantive problems with the map attached to the Trump peace plan when he left Washington. And it is with this knowledge in mind that we need to consider what he did when he got back.

 

Upon returning to Israel Gantz declared that he intended to introduce the Trump plan to the Knesset for approval. Some commentators portrayed his move as proof that he supported Trump’s peace plan. But given his awareness of the problems with the map and the implications for the political right, the opposite appears to be the case. Gantz’s announcement can better be seen as a bid to subvert and discredit Trump’s plan and to discredit Netanyahu and Trump personally.

 

Without corrections to the map, Likud and other right-wing lawmakers who otherwise support the plan and enthusiastically support Trump will be unable to vote in favor of it in a Knesset vote. Forcing them to oppose the plan publicly would serve several interests shared by both Blue and White and the Democrats. It would provide cover for the majority of Blue and White lawmakers who, like the Democrats wish to bury the plan. With the media scope-locked on right-wing opponents of Trump’s plan, they will avoid scrutiny of their own views.

 

The sight of Likud lawmakers opposing the Trump plan would discredit Netanyahu in the eyes of his voters. They would view him as incompetent and treacherous and many will avoid voting on March 2 as a result.

 

In light of joint opposition to the Trump plan from Likud and Blue and White lawmakers alike, center-right voters will perceive the parties as indistinguishable and follow the media’s urging to vote for Gantz.

 

For Trump, a Knesset defeat of his plan, followed in all likelihood by the defeat of Netanyahu would demoralize and anger Trump’s evangelical Christian base. Blue and White would move quickly to bury Trump’s plan. The Democrats would use the Knesset’s opposition to the plan and Gantz’s support for their positions as proof that Trump’s pro-Israel bona fides are skin deep and that Trump’s overall Middle East policy is misguided.

 

In short, advised by Benenson, after enjoying Trump’s hospitality, and benefiting from the prestige a meeting at the Oval Office confers, Gantz raised an initiative that would cause grievous political harm to Netanyahu and Trump and destroy any prospect of implementing any part of Trump’s peace plan.

 

And so we return to the issue of applying Israeli sovereignty in Judea and Samaria.

 

In light of the need to correct the mistakes in the map, it is clear that full implementation of Israeli sovereignty over the areas the Trump deal recommends will take time and will be impossible before March 2. But it is still possible to implement a significant component of the plan in a manner that will avert the damage Gantz and Benenson are seeking to cause.

 

Gantz has studiously worked to prevent his party from being identified with the ideological left. To achieve this goal despite the fact that the majority of his Knesset faction holds leftist and far-leftist views, Gantz has used the two center-right lawmakers from his party’s minority Telem faction as his campaign’s primary spokesmen on television. Whereas Yoaz Hendel and Zvika Hauser are pushed in front of microphones to extol the virtues of extending Israeli sovereignty to the Jordan Valley, the majority of Blue and White lawmakers, who share Obama’s views, are hidden in the shadows.

 

Without changing the maps, and while postponing approval of the Trump plan itself, the Netanyahu government can pass a government decision to apply Israeli law to all Israeli cities, towns, and villages in Judea and Samaria immediately in accordance with the Trump peace plan. Doing so will energize right-wing voters. And it will also expose Blue and White.

 

Applying Israeli law to the Israeli communities will arouse strenuous opposition from the majority of Blue and White faction members. Their opposition to a move that the majority of Israelis support would demonstrate that despite its right-wing fig leaves, Blue and White is a leftist party. Swing voters from the center-right would get the message.

 

This then brings us to the Democrats. For years, despite their protestations of support for Israel and commitment to Israel’s security, the Democrats have adopted a policy towards Israel that revolves obsessively around their demand to destroy the Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria and transfer the areas Jew free to the PLO. The Obama administration was so hateful towards these communities that it pushed through UN Security Council resolution 2234 that slanderously called them “illegal” after Donald Trump was elected president.

 

By applying Israeli law to these areas while avoiding a Knesset vote until after the map is corrected, the Netanyahu government will deny Democrats the ability to use Trump’s peace plan against him. It will also demonstrate Trump’s commitment to Israel to his evangelical base. Most importantly, applying Israeli law to the Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria will take the issue of their future off the table and ensure that the Trump peace plan will survive into the next government, regardless of who wins next month.

 

Senior presidential advisor Jared Kushner has said that it would be best to wait until after the election to begin applying Israeli sovereignty to areas in Judea and Samaria. Under normal circumstances, he would be right. But given the larger context in which this issue must be judged, it is fairly clear that delaying the move until after the elections will cause great harm to President Trump, and effectively bury his peace plan while elevating the Israeli left and the Democrats.

 

Originally published at Israel Hayom.

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_____________________________

Intro to ‘Israeli sovereignty and the fate of the Trump plan’

Intro by John R. Houk

Intro © February 7, 2020

______________________________

Israeli sovereignty and the fate of the Trump plan

 

@ 2013 All Rights Reserved to Caroline Glick

 

ABOUT Caroline B. Glick

 

Caroline B. Glick is a senior columnist at Breitbart News and the senior contributing and chief columnist for The Jerusalem Post. She is also a senior columnist for Maariv. She is the author of The Israeli Solution: A One State Plan for Peace in the Middle East, (Crown 2014) and of Shackled Warrior: Israel and the Global Jihad (Gefen 2008). The Israeli Solution was endorsed by leading US policymakers including Vice President Mike Pence, Senator Ted Cruz and National Security Advisor John Bolton. Shackled Warrior was endorsed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and former CIA director James Woolsey.

 

Glick is the adjunct senior fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs at the Center for Security Policy in Washington, DC and directs the Israeli Security Project at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. She travels frequently throughout the world to brief policymakers on issues related to Israel’s strategic environment and other related topics. She lectures widely on strategic and political issues affecting global security, Israel and the Jewish people, US-Israel relations, Israel-Diaspora affairs and Israel’s changing strategic landscape.

 

In 2008 Glick founded Latma, the Hebrew language satirical media criticism website. She served as editor in chief of the site until it ceased operations in 2015.

 

Latma changed the face of Israel’s social media and revolutionized the Israeli entertainment industry by bringing an alternative voice to the popular culture. Latma launched “Hakol Shafit,” a primetime, half hour satirical newscast on Israel television Channel 1. Glick served as the editor in chief of the program.

 

Glick was born in Houston, TX and grew up in Chicago, IL. She moved to Israel in 1991, two weeks after receiving her BA in Political Science from Columbia University. She joined the Israel Defense Forces that summer and served as an officer for five and a half years.

 

From 1994-1996, as an IDF captain, Ms. Glick served in the Defense Ministry as a core member of Israel’s negotiating team with the Palestinians.

 

In 1997 and 1998 Ms. Glick served as Assistant Foreign Policy Advisor to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

 

From 1998-2000 Ms. Glick studied at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and READ THE REST

 

United Islamists of America


America, the Land of Constitutional Law, AGAIN is being threatened from within by a stealth Islam flying under the radar largely due to the American Left’s obsession getting rid of duly elected President Trump.

 

Here is some info on an Islamic infiltration into America who would use the very First Amendment to destroy America that Islam would eradicate in favor of Sharia and Islamic laws inspired by the Quran, Hadith and Sira. Middle East Forum’s (Meforum) Islamist Watch has some details of some anti-American Muslims promoting anti-American Islamic ideology.

 

JRH 2/6/20

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************************

United Islamists of America

 

By David Swindle

A version posted at American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD)

February 5, 2020

Islamist Watch

 

Clerics of two theocratic movements – Arabia’s Salafis and South Asia’s Deobandis – have spent over a century denouncing each other’s theologies, only pausing, occasionally, for tactical alliances. Over the past few years, however, ecumenical attitudes have begun to change among Western Islamist clerics. As an increasing number of modernist preachers from both movements have stepped forward to establish new forward-facing organizations, cautious longer-term partnerships between the clerical components of the two movements have begun to emerge – providing us with a glimpse of American Islamism in the years to come.

 

This new-found inclusiveness was recently evident in September 2019, when a Deobandi Islamist seminary, the Institute of Knowledge (IOK) hosted its “Ilmspiration” Conference in Anaheim, California. The purpose of the day-long event was to bring together 14 Islamist scholars and imams from the IOK and two other likeminded, leading institutions: the Qalam Institute, a wildly popular Deobandi religious training organization led by Abdul Nasir Jangda; and the Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research, a project of Omar Suleiman, a prominent Salafi-trained cleric.

 

Omar Suleiman (holding microphone) and other panelists at the IOK’s September 2019 conference.

 

What makes these schools and their leaders so dangerous? Whether Deobandi or Salafi, both movements are adherents to the broader political idea of Islamism, which seeks to impose an Islamic state run under Islamic law. These clerics provide much of the arguments, propaganda, and most importantly, the theology, to persuade Muslims into believing in the supremacy of a medieval religious legal system. This ideology sows the seeds of terrorism both at home and abroad.

 

In their methods, the new social media-savvy generation of Deobandi and Salafi clerics in the West are very different from the insular, ascetic preachers of the previous generation; but not in their core beliefs. Qalam’s Deobandi leader Abdul Nasir Jangda, who commands a social media following of hundreds of thousands, defends female sex slavery and advocates the death penalty for apostasy. Meanwhile, Yaqeen’s Suleiman, a media darling for his involvement in progressives’ protests against Trump administration policies, warns young women they may be killed by a “jealous dad” if they commit adultery.

 

So what influence will these organizations exert on American Islam over the next few years? And how will these once hostile sects work together?

 

In a packed, segregated ballroom – filled with hijab-clad women on the left, men on the right, and families in the middle, the founders of IOK, Qalam, and Yaqeen described their institutions’ goals and methods.

 

Suleiman went first – introducing Yaqeen as a voice of “authentic” American Islam and claiming that his organization’s goal is “to be a think tank with a megaphone.” This “megaphone,” Suleiman explained, was working to change Google search results – using search engine optimization (SEO) tricks to direct readers to Yaqeen’s research, videos, and infographics. On such search inquiries as “Islam and Apostasy,” “Was Islam spread by the sword?” and “honor killings in Islam,” Suleiman bragged that Yaqeen is now the top result after Wikipedia. He also noted Yaqeen’s ability to influence mainstream media, from the Dallas Morning News to CNN.

 

In other words, Yaqeen is not just about influencing the public’s perception of Islam; it is attempting to impose Yaqeen’s very particular strain of Islam on both the American public and American Muslims.

 

In fact, Suleiman promised “that all of the organizations in the Muslim community” can use his material for free – from children in weekend schools and teens in private Islamic schools, to adults watching on YouTube and entire congregations making use of his “masjid [mosque] resource kits… so the whole masjid can be empowered.” Yaqeen is working to ensure the next generation of American Muslims adheres to a united Islamist creed: “We’re also piloting Islamic school curriculum at 20 different schools right now and it’s going to be free, inshallah, for all Islamic schools to use, Sunday schools or otherwise.”

 

Jangda went next, explaining Qalam’s goal is to educate the Muslim ummah. “Every single person should have access to the education and the understanding of Islam,” he said, before laying out the broad range of training courses Qalam offered: a seminary for full-time students, “intensives” that last a few weeks, online classes for part-time students, and, for those on-the-go, podcasts – to which 8 million have already listened.

 

Abdul Nasir Jangda, a modernist Deobandi cleric and leader of the Qalam Institute.

 

In an [sic] pledge familiar to a Salafi audience, the Deobandi cleric spoke of teaching the form of Islam first heard by audiences of Islam’s early leaders, and expressed his hope that Qalam’s “authentic” Islam will consequently be passed on “from generation to generation.”

 

None addressed the rather important fact that Suleiman’s “authentic” Islam differs on questions of jurisprudence to Jangda’s “authentic” Islam. More important for both, it appeared, is the concept of a united Muslim ummah [global community] – a vital condition of Islamism. In fact, one of the few precursors to the new-found Salafi-Deobandi partnerships in the U.S. can be found in Haitham Al-Haddad, a British cleric who – despite the theological disparities – claims to representant both Salafi and Deobandi ideologies, for the sake of a “united ummah.”

 

Nomaan Baig, the IOK’s founder and director, went next, thanking his “brothers” Jangda and Suleiman and praising their institutions. Current IOK programs include a K-10 school, pilgrimage services, a Saturday school and after-school programs, and a successful series of podcasts. Echoing the others’ belief in the supremacy of the ummah, he declared that his own efforts at the IOK are “only doable and possible because of our collaboration.” In other words: only by putting theological differences aside can Islamism succeed.

 

And so with this understanding of the three groups’ differing areas of emphasis and target audiences, the utility of their collaboration becomes clear. As a united Islamist front, the three organizations create a chain of custody: Yaqeen creates the materials for schools and mosques; the IOK then teaches this material at schools and graduate programs, while Qalam works with young adults and future clerics.

 

The collaboration and its future prospects went so well that near the end of the day, Baig said: “So imam Omar suggested, and Shayk Abdul Nasir and I conferred that inshallah, we’re going to try and make this an annual thing here in Southern California.” Baig described the groups’ strategy as “‘complementation.’ We complement one another… because our propagation is that knowledge.”

 

Such ‘complementation’ would have been extremely unusual just a few decades ago. Deobandis and Salafis follow different madhahib [schools of jurisprudence]. The founding Deobandi seminary in India urges its students to read books of “deviant” Salafis in order to refute them. In the United States, websites sympathetic to Deobandis are devoted to challenging and denouncing the Al Maghrib Institute, a Salafi religious training organization with which Suleiman has long been involved. Salafi clerics and preachers, meanwhile, denounce Deobandis as “deviants.” Suleiman’s own teacher, the Salafi cleric Salah As-Sawy, criticizes Sufism (in which the Deobandi school is technically rooted), while Salafi activists have established dozens of social media pages and websites to “speak against this SUFI demonic cult who misguide innocent muslimeen.”

 

It is also important to note that these Deobandi institutions are relatively new – Qalam and the IOK did not exist some years ago, because Deobandi institutions were almost only found in American mosques and madaris [traditional seminaries]. Qalam and IOK are the result of a wave of new modernist Deobandis, likely taking their cue from the modernist Salafis who have rejected the political and theological isolation of the past, instead embracing social media, pan-Islamist activism and even some social justice rhetoric. Omar Suleiman (with his 318,000 Twitter followers) is perhaps the most notable example.

 

Suleiman does not just ignore the theological divisions of the past; he deliberately obscures his own affiliations, once writing, “Don’t let people box you into a group because they’re too narrow minded to think outside of their own cultish mind barriers.”

 

“When you talk to [sic] much about politics and social justice, you’ll be deemed ‘Ikhwani.’ [Muslim Brotherhood] When you stress the importance of the Sunnah too much and show aversion to innovation, you’ll be deemed ‘Salafi’ or ‘Wahhabi.’ And when you speak too much about spirituality and how the Ummah is in need of the hearts being rectified as much as it’s [sic] outwardly affairs, you’re a ‘Sufi.'”

 

Suleiman encourages this new generation of Muslims to “[S]leep peacefully while others waste their days and nights trying to ‘figure you out.'” At the IOK conference, what was once merely talk of a united ummah is no longer speculation, but a working model. Islamic division is being forgotten for the sake of Islamist unity.

 

And the impact of this alliance? As the last session of the conference began after the three leaders introduced their organizations, the moderator noted: “Inshallah, before we begin I just wanted to make one quick announcement, alhamdullilah, our registration numbers indicate one thing here today: that there are more students here than adults.”

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___________________________

David M. Swindle is a fellow for Islamist Watch and the Southern California associate of the Counter-Islamist Grid. He also works as the Director of Research for The Israel Group. Follow him on Twitter @DaveSwindle

 

©1994-2020 The Middle East Forum

 

About Islamist Watch

 

Launched in 2006, Islamist Watch is a project of the Middle East Forum. We work to combat the ideas and institutions of lawful Islamism in the United States and throughout the West. Arguing that “radical Islam is the problem, moderate Islam is the solution,” we seek to expose the Islamist organizations that currently dominate the debate, while identifying and promoting the work of moderate Muslims. Islamist Watch specifically does not deal with counterterrorism but works to establish that lawful Islamism is itself a threat.

 

The Threat of Lawful Islamism

 

Islamists ultimately seek hegemonic control via a worldwide caliphate that applies strict Islamic law in full. Terrorism is one method to advance this project but it is not the only approach. Indeed, the activities of lawful Islamists will arguably prove a more effective tactic in the long term. While the public intuitively understands the threat of terrorism and is mobilized by it, and while states have well-developed institutions (law enforcement, intelligence agencies, the military, the justice system) to protect and fight against it, the activities of lawful – or non-violent – Islamists appear less alarming and institutions do not exist to counter them.

 

Non-violent extremists play an important role in the radicalization of Muslim communities. Although non-violent extremists may not always directly advocate violence, they offer a worldview in which violence against non-Muslims is ultimately justified. Islamists provide young Muslims with the theological and political justifications for terrorism. This READ THE REST

 

Islamic Jihadists Kill Christian Pastor; Begin a Deadly New Year for Christians in Nigeria


Pastor Lawan Andimi

 

I stumbled upon an ACLJ email dated 2/1/20 that submitted a number of petitions to sign to forward the cause of Christian faith in legal matters. The petition that caught my eye was a condemnation of Islamic terrorists Boko Haram executing Pastor Lawan Andimi by beheading. WHY? For the Islamic crime of not bowing to Islamic Supremacy.

 

This is the classic example of the reason I will NEVER trust an adherent of Islam.

 

In full disclosure, ACLJ sends out these petitions largely as a device of donation revenue. The ACLJ is a worthy cause. In my case, I signed the petition to voice my disapproval of Islamic persecution of Christians but did not donate money. You do as your conscience and human spirit leads you.

 

JRH 2/5/20

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Islamic Jihadists Kill Christian Pastor; Begin a Deadly New Year for Christians in Nigeria

 

By CeCe Heil

1/27/20

ACLJ Petition

 

2020 is already proving to be a deadly year for innocent Christians in Nigeria.

 

Boko Haram – the Nigerian jihadist militia pledged to ISIS – just beheaded a Christian Pastor who weeks ago was shown in a hostage video telling the world: “Don’t cry. Don’t worry. But thank God for everything.”

 

As reported in the New York Times, Pastor Lawan Andimi was executed by Boko Haram and his hometown attacked:

 

Islamic militants in Nigeria have killed a Christian pastor who had pleaded for his life in a video just days earlier, and a human rights activist said Tuesday that other extremists attacked his hometown on the same day.

 

The Rev. Lawan Andimi was abducted earlier this month when Boko Haram militants attacked the Michika local government area, where he was the chairman of a local chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria. He was killed on Monday.

 

Anyone who has seen the video knows that Rev. Andimi did not plead for his life. In fact, he was calm, and even appeared to be at peace, trusting in God and stating:

 

By the grace of God, I will be together with my wife, my children, and my colleagues. [But] if the opportunity has not been granted, maybe it is the will of God . . . I have never been discouraged because all conditions that one finds himself in is in the hands of God.

 

The unshakable faith of this pastor should be humbling to every Christian. The fact that he was executed by Islamic radicals because of his faith should infuriate every human being.

 

In the same week, another group of jihadists reportedly murdered two Christian teenage girls.

 

[Muslim Fulani] herdsmen on motorbikes rode into Gora-Gan village in Zango Kataf County at about 5 p.m. shooting villagers on sight, according to a local resident. Luka Biniyat, spokesman for the Southern Kaduna Peoples Union (SOKAPU), confirmed the killing of Briget Philip, 18, and Priscilla David, 19.

 

Other young Christians were injured in the attack, including a 12-year-old.

 

The evil of these jihadists seems to know no limit. According to the New York Times, the Islamic State has even used or forced children to execute Christians:

 

On Friday, the Islamic State’s West Africa Province, known as ISWAP, released a video which showed a hooded child with pistol in hand execute a Christian man.

 

In the case of Rev. Andimi, Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari tweeted:

 

I am greatly saddened by the fact that the terrorists went on to kill him even while giving signals of a willingness to set him free by releasing him to third parties. This barbarism is condemnable. We will ensure that these terrorists pay a heavy price for their evil actions. — Muhammadu Buhari (@MBuhari) January 21, 2020

 

However in every instance of violence, the Nigerian government has seemed unable or worse, unwilling to do anything about it. The body count continues to rise, and Christians live in constant fear.

 

This deadly injustice has to stop. Nigerian Islamic terrorists are waging a horrific campaign of mass atrocities against people in their own country simply because they are Christians. And those they don’t kill they take hostage and even enslave.

 

We’ve gone to the United Nations through our European office, the European Centre for Law and Justice (ECLJ), demanding international intervention for Christian teen Leah Sharibu, one of over 100 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram at gunpoint almost two years ago.

 

Boko Haram is holding the innocent young Christian prisoner because she refuses to convert to Islam. The sinister group threatened to kill or enslave her. Until recently, we weren’t even sure if Leah was still alive. Thankfully the Nigerian government  confirmed that she is, but she still desperately needs help.

 

We submitted a written submission to the U.N. Human Rights Council warning that the violence is boiling over into other regions, and asking for immediate action to stop the bloodshed and persecution before it’s too late:

 

It is imperative that the U.N. take swift action and work with the government of Nigeria to ensure that Leah and all others who remain captured are returned home safely and to put an end to the atrocities being carried out in Nigeria by Boko Haram and the Fulani Herdsmen. No one should have to live under the fear of being abducted, enslaved, or killed.

 

Action must be taken to not only stop the spread of violence within Nigeria but also the spread of violence in west Africa. Boko Haram has in fact already begun carrying out attacks in neighbouring Chad and Cameroon.

 

If nothing is done to stop these violent radicals and hold them accountable for their atrocities, the outlook for Christians in Nigeria, and across Africa, looks bleak. We cannot let these Islamic militias hunt Christians into extinction.

 

As we stated in our submission:

 

The U.N. Charter calls on the U.N. to remove threats to peace, and the Genocide Convention calls on the U.N. to prevent acts of genocide, not merely to respond to them. We have seen in Iraq and Syria what happens when the U.N. fails to take preventive measures when it is clear that mass atrocities are being carried out against a particular group of people. This is only the beginning, if meaningful action is not taken now the problem in Nigeria will worsen.

 

We ask every ACLJ member to pray for the family of Pastor Lawan, and for Leah Sharibu, that she is finally liberated from her evil captors, as well as for her family as they endure this nightmare.

 

We have a moral obligation to fight for our Christian brothers and sisters. All Christians have a right to live and worship in peace. We will continue to work at the U.N. and with world leaders until the violence is not only stopped, but action is taken to bring the extremist perpetrators to justice and prevent the bloodshed from ever happening again.

 

YOU CAN SIGN PETITION HERE: https://aclj.org/persecuted-church/islamic-jihadists-kill-christian-pastor-begin-a-deadly-new-year-for-christians-in-nigeria?utm_medium=Email&utm_source=ExactTarget&utm_campaign=d-02012020_top-O_seg-NLexNLETpDPTNLpFBR_typ-NL_C

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____________________________

American Center for Law and Justice | Washington D.C. | Copyright © 2020, ACLJ

 

The ACLJ is an organization dedicated to the defense of constitutional liberties secured by law.

 

American Center for Law and Justice is a d/b/a for Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism, Inc., a tax-exempt, not-for-profit, religious corporation as defined under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, specifically dedicated to the ideal that religious freedom and freedom of speech are inalienable, God-given rights. The Center’s purpose is to engage legal, legislative and cultural issues by implementing an effective strategy of advocacy, education and litigation to ensure that those rights are protected under the law. The organization has participated in numerous cases before the Supreme Court, Federal Court of Appeals, Federal District Courts, and various state courts regarding freedom of religion and freedom of speech. Your gift is very much appreciated and fully deductible as a charitable contribution. A copy of our latest financial report may be obtained by writing to us at P.O. Box 90555, Washington, DC 20090-0555.

 

If I was an Israeli Jewish Voter – NO DEAL!


John R. Houk

© February 3, 2020

I AM NOT amenable for Arabs that pretend to be a Palestinian people to have any sort of sovereign nation. BUT I don’t live in Israel. If Jews are willing be a vote to give up their Biblical heritage in an over generous and probably disastrous move to give a State to Arabs called Palestine, it’s their business.

 

Those Israeli voters MUST remember what happened in Gaza after Jews were forced to leave ultimately giving autonomous rule to Jew-hating Hamas. NAMELY, constant missile barrages and terrorist tunnels to murder Jews.

 

A Palestinian State will be worse than Hamas controlled Gaza, since President Trump’s Deal of the Century intends to AGAIN divide Jerusalem. Though I have not been able to find and read how Trump’s Deal of the Century Divided Jerusalem affects the Western Wall of the Temple Mount where two sacrilegious Muslim Mosques stand, I can’t imagine it bodes well for Jews revering their faith and heritage.

 

The place named the West Bank by conquering Jordanians in 1948, and now more referred to as Judea and Samaria after recapturing in 1967, will be bulk of this Arab state to be called Palestine if successful.

 

I find myself on the rare occasion praying Faux-Palestinian shoot themselves in the foot by nixing this so-called Deal of the Century through their typical Jew-hating terrorism that vainly tries to kill all Jews to erase Israel from the map.

 

I feel comfortable with stating a guarantee that a Deal of the Century Palestinian State would mean the resumption of Islamic inspired militaries from surrounding nations to invade Israel to pronounce Dar al Islam over the Jewish State of Israel with the goal of a 2nd Jewish Holocaust making Hitler’s Final Solution appear as child’s play.

 

I AM A TRUMP SUPPORTER VOTING TRUMP in November 2020, but if I was an Israeli voter, I would wholly reject this Deal of the Century.

 

Here is – to the best of my knowledge – an unauthoritative version of the Deal of the Century but from the U.S. White House under the pdf title, “Peace to Prosperity: A Vision to Improve the Lives of the Palestinian and Israeli People” (181 pages).

 

Thanks to the blog work of Geri Ungurean a very important video of Pastor J.D. Farag sermon on the Deal of the Century at his Church on Super Bowl Sunday 2/2/20. Pastor Farag at about the 6 ½ minute begins with facts about Arabs calling themselves Palestinians. Pastor Farag’s sermon demonstrates the reason the Two-State Solution attributed to Trump but actually formulated by his son-in-law Jared Kushner will NOT BRING PEACE between Israel and a Palestine State dedicated to Islam. Ungurean’s post is entitled, “I have never been more proud of Pastor JD Farag. He spoke truth about the so-called peace plan, and he didn’t care who disagreed with him!  Praise God, Pastor JD!  Keep speaking truth!” Ungurean includes a roughly hour ling video of three Christian Zionist pro-Trump and Pro-Netanyahu who begin with the disbelief Trump would divide Jerusalem yet most of the video is about Bible Prophecy relating to the Antichrist coming to mess up Israel for awhile. The prophetic portion is the reason I suspect Ungurean included the 2nd video. You’ll have to go her blog for the second video. HERE IS THE Farag VIDEO:

 

VIDEO: Bible Prophecy Update – February 2nd, 2020

 

 

Posted by J.D. Farag

141K subscribers – Feb 2, 2020

 

Pastor J.D. addresses serious concerns with the recently unveiled Trump peace plan. READ THE REST

 

Below is a much briefer Power Line Blog that focuses on a divided Jerusalem.

 

JRH 2/3/20

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Deal of the Century?

 

By John Hinderaker

January 28, 2020

Power Line Blog

 

That is how President Trump bills the Israeli-Arab peace plan that he unveiled today. You can download the entire proposal, titled “Peace to Prosperity: A Vision to Improve the Lives of the Palestinian and Israeli People,” here. I haven’t had time to digest the entire plan, but the Jerusalem Post summarizes the high points:

 

Borders: Trump’s plan features a map of what Israel’s new borders will be, should it enact the plan fully. Israel will retain 20% of the West Bank and will lose a small amount of land in the Negev near the Gaza-Egypt border. The Palestinians will have a pathway to a state in the vast majority of territory in the West Bank, while Israel will maintain control of all borders.

 

This is the first time an American peace plan has included a map. President Trump apparently has delved into the details of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

 

Visiion4Peace Conceptual Map- Israel & Palestinian State

 

Jerusalem: The Palestinians will have a capital in east Jerusalem based on northern and eastern neighborhoods that are outside the Israeli security barrier – Kafr Akab, Abu Dis and half of Shuafat. Otherwise, Trump said Jerusalem will remain undivided as Israel’s capital.

 

If implemented, this would be a big win for Israel. This is important, too:

 

Settlements: Israel will retain the Jordan Valley and all Israeli settlements in the West Bank in the broadest definition possible, meaning not the municipal borders of each settlement but their security perimeters. This also includes 15 isolated settlements, which will be enclaves within an eventual Palestinian state. Within those settlements Israel will not be able to build for the next four years.

 

Security: Israel will be in control of security from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea. The IDF will not have to leave the West Bank. No change to Israel’s approach to Judea and Samaria would be needed.

 

Palestinian state: The plan does not include immediate recognition of a Palestinian state; rather, it expects a willingness on Israel’s part to create a pathway toward Palestinian statehood based on specific territory, which is about 70% of Judea and Samaria, including areas A and B and parts of Area C. The state will only come into existence in four years if the Palestinians accept the plan, if the Palestinian Authority stops paying terrorists and inciting terrorism and if Hamas and Islamic Jihad put down their weapons. In addition, the American plan calls on the Palestinians to give up corruption, respect human rights, freedom of religion and a free press, so that they don’t have a failed state. If those conditions are met, the US will recognize a Palestinian state and implement a massive economic plan to assist it.

 

I think the likelihood of Palestinian leadership inducing Hamas and Islamic Jihad to abandon violence, or giving up on its own crusade to massacre Jewish Israelis, is close to zero. Early returns suggest that this evaluation is correct:

 

Palestinians from across the political spectrum have strongly rejected US President Donald Trump’s plan for Mideast peace, which was unveiled by the White House on Tuesday.

 

“We say 1,000 ‘no’s to this deal,” Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said.

***

Palestinian officials and political factions vowed to work toward thwarting the plan, also known as the “Deal of the Century,” on the pretext that it aims to “liquidate the Palestinian cause.”

 

Abbas was speaking during an emergency meeting of Palestinian officials in Ramallah on Tuesday evening to discuss ways of responding to the Trump plan. Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad representatives were invited to participate in the meeting.

 

In a televised address, Abbas called the plan a “conspiracy,” adding that his people’s rights “are not for sale.”

 

“I say to Trump and Netanyahu: Jerusalem is not for sale, all our rights are not for sale and are not for bargain. And your deal, the conspiracy, will not pass,” he said.

 

I guess that is a No. If you are a Palestinian politician, the money is on the other side. Notwithstanding the fact that the Trump plan includes, if the Palestinians put down their arms and agree to acknowledge the State of Israel, billions of dollars in aid that dwarf, on a per capita basis, the Marshall Plan. But the welfare of the Palestinian people has never been a priority for radical Arab politicians.

 

So, does President Trump’s peace plan have a chance of succeeding? Probably not, in the short term. But at some point, Israeli and Palestinian Arabs may be willing to acknowledge that terrorism has been a dead end for them. This will require a complete change in leadership, but that likely will happen eventually.

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_________________________

If I was an Israeli Jewish Voter – NO DEAL!

John R. Houk

© February 3, 2020

______________________

Deal of the Century?

 

Copyright © 2020 by Power Line and respective authors.

 

About Power Line

 

Power Line is a site that features commentary on the news from a conservative perspective. We have been serving readers since Memorial Day weekend 2002. Four of us contribute to the site and add our personal interests to the mix of commentary on the news. We are:

 

John H. Hinderaker practiced law for 41 years, enjoying a nationwide litigation practice. He retired from the practice of law at the end of 2015, and is now President of Center of the American Experiment, a think tank headquartered in Minnesota.

 

Mr. Hinderaker lives with his family in Apple Valley, Minnesota. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and Harvard Law School. During his career as a lawyer, he was named one of the top commercial litigators and one of the 100 best lawyers in Minnesota, and was voted by his peers one of the most respected lawyers in that state. He was repeatedly listed in The Best Lawyers in America and was recognized as Minnesota’s Super Lawyer of the Year for 2005. John can be READ THE REST

 

This Meat Grinder Called ‘Afghanistan’


Twentieth century (and now 21st century) history shows us American leadership has had difficulty in ending wars we participate in without an end we experienced at the end of WWII – viz., complete utter victory.

That difficulty us glaring in America’s longest war – battling Islamic terrorists in Afghanistan. For me, that war should have been drawn done after Osama (or Usama) bin Laden met his demise at the hands of Navy SEALs in Pakistan.

 

Alas the nature of 21st century geopolitics and Afghanistan’s proximity to crazy Muslim Mullahs in Iran, enigmatic yet still threatening Russia and America’s new arch-rival in Communist China. Geopolitics aside, there is nothing left worth fighting for in Afghanistan. UNLESS the USA is willing to take the same step Islam took to spread across the planet from its Arab origins like an unconquerable disease. Islam’s disease was spread by the paradigm of submit, transform or be killed. Not a single Western nation – including the USA – is willing to exact that kind of victory on people brainwashed for centuries by Islam.

 

What’s left? Give the Islamic terrorists in Afghanistan a spanking they’ll remember and leave with the threat another spanking can return.

 

Justin Smith utilizes the Washington Post’s Afghanistan Papers to further the need to depart Afghanistan.

 

JRH 2/1/20

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This Meat Grinder Called ‘Afghanistan’  

America Rejects the Butcher’s Bill

 

By Justin O. Smith

Sent 1/31/2020 9:51 PM

 

Afghanistan is an amazing country full of rich culture and history that has mesmerized many a young man, but its own people today are still unwilling to defend their country at such a level that nothing the United States Armed Forces does will make a difference, in even twenty, forty or sixty more years. They have forgotten their Buddhist past and long relinquished their fates to Allah, the Koran and Islam; and so, no matter that many do not hold with the harsher tenets of Islam, they still will submit, just as they have always done, to the final wishes and commands of the terrible, murderous Taliban mullahs and clerics, in the end, if the United States ever does finally withdraw from this heaven on earth, that is also too often a living hell. And regardless of any U.S. Command’s decision that seeks to stand by those Afghanis who have sacrificed much sweat and blood in the  previous eighteen years of war, alongside the fine young men and women of America, the paid out sheet in the cost of American lives is not worth the gain, when the net return on our efforts show them to be a dismal failure.

 

Americans must remember that our primary mission in Afghanistan was to kill and destroy the Al Qaeda who were responsible for planning and financing the September 11th 2001 attack on America that resulted in the heinous murders of three-thousand of our countrymen. We didn’t enter Afghanistan to save the people from themselves or to fight their battle for them, although that is exactly what we’ve done for the past eighteen years, even though the majority of the group responsible for 9/11 has either been captured or killed.

 

Noted by Michael Phillips for the Wall Street Journal (12-13-19) [Reporting a story on Col. Randy Hoffman]: “Over the course of the war, 775,000 U.S. troops have fought in Afghanistan: 28,000 of them have served five or more tours. More than 2,300 Americans have died there, and 20,000 have suffered wounds, including amputated limbs and brain injuries. … more than 120,000 returned home with symptoms of post-traumatic stress, the hidden wounds of America’s longest war.”

 

President Trump has largely opposed a U.S. presence in Afghanistan, as far back as 2013, when a private citizen he tweeted [Do a page search to locate quotes]: “We should leave Afghanistan immediately. No more wasted lives.” And in a later tweet he wrote: “Afghanistan is a complete waste. Time to come home!”

 

Trump’s instincts exhibited an awareness for what a situation actually represents, the reality, and he was right, when he examined the Afghanistan War and essentially asked, “Why in the hell are we still there?”

 

In its nineteenth year, we’re still fighting a war that approximately two-thirds of Afghanistan War Veterans call “not worth fighting”. Why?

 

As Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld, under President Bush,  stated so bluntly in one memo: “We are never going to get the U.S. military out of Afghanistan unless we take care to see that there is something going on that will provide the stability that will be necessary for us to leave.”

 

Afghanistan does represent an extremely strategic and sensitive area for U.S. military considerations, due to its close proximity to China and Iran, and despite all the incredible advances in our surveillance technology, armed drones and missile delivery systems and our other strategic bases in close proximity to this region, many intelligence service heads place a premium on first hand contacts in country. The U.S. Armed Forces are most reluctant to give up such a near perfect deployment area for operations all across the Middle East, and for other considerations.

 

Here again, if America is as energy independent as our leaders assert, there isn’t any U.S. interests in Afghanistan, except to use our presence there to keep stability and peace throughout the entire region, while protecting the Straits of Hormuz for international commerce and preventing Turkey’s attempts to reconstitute the old Ottoman Empire. These are matters that should fall to the entire Western world more so than just on the shoulders of the United States; however, our leaders are also most likely interested in Afghanistan’s usefulness as a forward position to counter China’s rise in the area and to keep an eye on Pakistan too, both of which have aided in helping Iran and North Korea develop their nuclear weapons armaments.

 

On December 9th 2019, the Washington Post released a bombshell report on the reprehensible and egregious mishandling of the war in Afghanistan by senior U.S. officials and those in the high command of Afghan operations. Generated by leaked documents from the Special Investigator General’s office for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) examining the root failures of the Afghan War, the report revealed that over the course of eighteen years U.S. officials outright lied about the campaign and made overly optimistic and false assessments to hide the obvious evidence the war in Afghanistan had become unwinnable.

 

In the current spending budget, as the United States considers the possibility of a complete withdrawal, it allocates $133 billion for Afghanistan in 2020 alone, even though everybody from the President’s office on down see major problems in the Afghan government’s ability to provide basic services and keep their military fully functional using U.S. provided armaments and support equipment. Problems, or corruption, are also inhibiting efforts to control the opium growers and the drug trade and to make full use of Afghanistan’s other natural resources. The American taxpayer has paid for many failed efforts, in this troubled country, whether it was money spent for soybeans that won’t grow, weapons “lost” or stolen by Afghan military forces and a $2.9 million dollar farming storage facility or a $456,000 training facility that actually started crumbling apart after only four months due to substandard bricks. And let’s not forget the Afghan power plant America built that was operating at only about two percent of its capacity.

 

James Dobbins, a former special envoy to Afghanistan under both President Bush and Obama, told SIGAR interviewers: “We don’t invade poor countries to make them rich. We don’t invade authoritarian countries to make them democratic. We invade violent countries to make them peaceful and we clearly failed in Afghanistan.”

 

Reported by WaPo, Colonel Bob Crowley, U.S. Army, a senior counter-insurgency advisor in Afghanistan in 2013 and 2014, noted: “Every data point was altered to present the best picture possible. Surveys, for instance, were totally unreliable but reinforced that everything we were doing was right, and we became a self-licking ice cream cone.”

 

During a conference for Concerned Veterans for America, former warrant officer and Green Beret, Nate Anderson stated: “We’ve now gone 18 years in this conflict and literally, a new generation not even born on 9/11 is fighting the war that started then. And from a societal and cultural standpoint, that’s a very jarring reality to comprehend.”

 

Three successive administrations refused to properly confront terrible mistakes in Afghanistan, from pride or fear, and they failed to admit failure. General Douglas Lute, key Afghanistan strategist under Bush and Obama, posed the following question: “If the American people knew the magnitude of this dysfunction … 2400 lives lost … Who will say this was in vain?”

 

America hasn’t “won” only because we have not destroyed all opposition, similar to the way we did in Germany after WWII, however, America absolutely can win. Our people just can’t summon up the political will to do so at this juncture in time, and there are plenty of good reasons to be reluctant to keep trying to pacify the violent, murderous natives of this 7th century backwater, Third World hellhole, but America could if Her people wished to make it so. America has the military might. America’s people do not have the will, and rightfully so.

 

Whenever U.S. forces made security gains in Afghanistan, they inevitably threw them away with too many abrupt changes in military strategy. However, there was a fairly unprecedented security gain between 2010 and the end of 2013, that resulted from operations focused on bottom-up operations and working with local populations in rural areas, to press the Taliban and place it more on defense, decreasing its reach in communities and its time and opportunity for terrorist strikes.

 

The Taliban controls as much of Afghanistan as it ever did, from the moment American forces first set foot in country, including the heart of Kabul, the Afghan Capitol, as they continue operations across the country. The drug lords and our corrupt “allies” are laughing at America, as they rake in obscene profits at the expense of the U.S. government and by way of the blood streaming from the bodies of our U.S. Armed Forces members, those good and decent young men and women, placing their all on the line for God, Family and Country and dying a few here and a few there each day, each week, each month, in this meat grinder called “Afghanistan”.

 

Afghanistan nearly cost Marine Colonel Randy Hoffman his sanity, after serving seven combat tours there, six of which were highly classified, along with one tour in Iraq and a bronze star for valor, burying many friends in the course of that time. It changed his personality in such a manner, that it placed a strain on his marriage, with his wife Dawn, and frightened his children, to the point that the family began calling itself “Hoffmanistan”, joking darkly on the steep cost exacted on their daily lives by the terrible memories carried home from Afghanistan.

 

In one two and a half year period, Randy lost 100 men, seeing one decapitated by a broken helicopter blade. And after returning stateside for a bit, home in Indiana, he drew the unfortunate duty of burying nine more Marines and making dozens of phone calls to the grieving families of other Marines.

 

The United States Armed Forces, all branches, has performed courageously in Afghanistan and performed their duty to the best of their ability, however, at this point, the filling of hospital beds and body bags is no longer justified, by any stretch of one’s imagination. Without the will to win and a strategy set on that purpose, the only alternative left is to leave.

 

If President Trump should withdraw our troops from Afghanistan anytime soon, we can leave knowing we did not lose this war, because we succeeded in the primary mission to kill thousands of Al Qaeda. We’re never going to end the evil of Islam in this country, or even remotely reform it, to the point that we could actually pacify Afghanistan in any way that would amount to a moral victory. If the Afghans want to fight for their country, it’s their choice, and they better get to it, and if they don’t, that’s their choice too, but after nearly twenty years, and all the blood and treasure America has spent, Afghanistan is no longer our problem. We are not morally obligated to wreak vengeance on the Taliban and the various terrorists of their country forever, and our forces would be leaving of their own accord, called home by the President, not forced out.

 

America owes it to those who serve so courageously and sacrifice so much, under incredibly harsh and dangerous conditions, to finally end this war. We can proudly and righteously honor all who served in this Asian misadventure, as the heroes they are and for a mission completed successfully above and beyond the call of duty, regardless of how far their leaders strayed or how confused they became on our ultimate goal for Afghanistan. Each American’s service, both the good men and women, was not in vain.

 

America has looked at the butcher’s bill, and She rejects it.

 

By Justin O. Smith

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BLOG EDITOR: I’ve apparently been placed in restricted Facebook Jail! The restriction was relegated after criticizing Democrats for supporting abortion in one post and criticizing Virginia Dems for gun-grabbing legislation and levying protester restrictions. Rather than capitulate to Facebook censorship by abandoning the platform, I choose to post and share until the Leftist censors ban me completely. Conservatives are a huge portion of Facebook. If more or all Conservatives are banned, it will affect the Facebook advertising revenue paradigm. SO FIGHT CENSORSHIP BY SHARE – SHARE – SHARE!!! Facebook notified me in pop-up on 1/20/20: “You’re temporarily restricted from joining and posting to groups that you do not manage until April 18 at 7:04 PM.”

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Edited by John R. Houk

Text enclosed by brackets and source links are by the Editor.

 

© Justin O. Smith