Monday, June 26, 2017

The EastMed Pipeline Could Be a Giant Step Towards Enhancing Regional Security - George N. Tzogopoulos

by George N. Tzogopoulos

EastMed would allow Cyprus, Greece, and Israel to collaborate while developing their roles as hubs of stability in a turbulent neighborhood.

BESA Center Perspectives Paper No. 505, June 22, 2017

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The EastMed pipeline, a proposed means of transporting gas from the eastern Mediterranean to new markets, would be expensive and difficult – but it is feasible. Easier and less expensive solutions are also being considered, but the security element works in EastMed’s favor. EastMed would allow Cyprus, Greece, and Israel to collaborate while developing their roles as hubs of stability in a turbulent neighborhood. The EU and the US would likely see improvement in Western energy dependence. And Israel would have the opportunity to improve its relationship with the EU, not only by participating in a project of European interest but also by finding new clients for its own gas in the European market. 

The gas discoveries in the eastern Mediterranean are altering regional dynamics. Transporting that gas to new export destinations, principally in Europe, will be complicated but feasible.

With this challenge in mind, Cyprus, Greece, and Israel have intensified their contacts of late. Trilateral summits are regularly taking place with the participation of Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades and Greek and Israeli Prime Ministers Alexis Tsipras and Benjamin Netanyahu. (In April 2017, Italy joined the club, signing a declaration in Tel Aviv to that effect.)

The first trilateral summit took place in Nicosia in January 2016 and the second in December 2016 in Jerusalem. A third was held only a few days ago in Thessaloniki. At that most recent summit, the leaders agreed to deepen their energy collaboration by exploring means of constructing an underwater “EastMed” pipeline.

The project envisages a 1,300 km offshore pipeline and a 600 km onshore one from Eastern Mediterranean sources to Cyprus, from Cyprus to Crete, from Crete to mainland Greece (the Peloponnese), and from the Peloponnese to Western Greece. Then, the plan is to connect Western Greece to Italy east of Otranto via a 207 km offshore pipeline across the Ionian Sea, the so-called Poseidon.

At first glance, the biggest obstacle to the construction of the EastMed pipeline – which, if constructed, would be the longest and deepest subsea pipeline on earth – is its technical viability. Practical challenges abound. On the approach to Crete, for example, there is a stretch of about 10 km where the depth is quite high, which could cause construction problems. However, the companies involved are optimistic that technology will advance sufficiently to enable the pipeline to be built.

The Natural Gas Supplier Corporation (DEPA) of Greece describes the project as “technically feasible,” according to studies it has conducted. To bolster its case, DEPA notes the success of the Medgaz pipeline, which runs between Algeria and Spain. Israel energy minister Yuval Steinitz, too, has attempted to ease fears about construction issues and suggests that EastMed can be completed by 2025.

Technical feasibility is not the only matter of concern, however. Another challenge is the cost, which has been projected to range anywhere from

$4 billion to $7 billion. Low gas prices are also concern, as they could prevent private companies from supporting the project alongside the EU (which is prepared to offer co-financing).

Alternatives scenarios are on the table to address these concerns. LNG bases in either Cyprus or Israel could work in theory, but the prohibitively high cost of constructing them makes them a nonstarter. On a practical level, there are two real options available.

The first is to construct a 550 km submarine pipeline beginning from the Leviathan reservoir in Israeli waters, passing through Cypriot waters, and reaching southern Turkey. Israeli gas would then be shipped from southern Turkey to Europe via existing, and perhaps some newly constructed, pipeline networks. This project is estimated to cost half or possibly even less than half what EastMed would cost. But in view of the lack of resolution on the Cyprus Question, Israel is hesitant to proceed to an agreement with Turkey on this matter.

The second option is to use already existing LNG facilities in Egypt. Gas from the eastern Mediterranean could theoretically be supplied to the two Egyptian facilities in Damietta and Idku, turning Egypt back into a gas exporter. But the recent discovery of the Zohr field represents an unknown factor. It cannot be anticipated how this field will influence Egypt’s energy priorities and the balance between domestic consumption and exports. Also, neither the construction of new pipelines nor the reversal of the existing one connecting Israel to Egyptian LNG facilities would be an easy process.

If the Cyprus Question is resolved soon, the Turkish option will gain ground. But the restarted talks between Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci are highly unlikely to lead to a breakthrough. In any case, Turkey will not be considered a reliable partner by Israel for as long as President Tayyip Erdoğan dominates the political sphere, despite the rapprochement achieved last summer. Israel also has reservations vis-à-vis Egypt: the growing Russian role in Egypt’s energy sector cannot be ignored.

Israel has always attached great significance to political and security parameters. If the EastMed project develops, it will certainly improve Israel’s relationship with the EU. Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Cañete has said construction of this pipeline would contribute to the reduction of Europe’s dependency on Russian energy, a potential result also viewed with favor by the US.

The traditional division among EU member states on their view of Moscow can work in EastMed’s favor. While Germany is looking favorably towards Nord Stream II, which will complement Nord Stream I in the transporting of Russian gas to Europe under the Baltic Sea, the EU might well emphasize energy security and push (with the support of the US) for the realization of EastMed.

Israel is the driving force for energy development in the eastern Mediterranean, and its choices on this matter will have serious implications in terms of both strategic calculations and long-term economic planning. By cooperating with trustworthy democratic countries, Jerusalem will be able to mitigate the risk of instability, secure clients on the Continent, strengthen its relationship with the EU, and improve its image in Europe.

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BESA Center Perspectives Papers are published through the generosity of the Greg Rosshandler Family

George N. Tzogopoulos is a Lecturer at the Democritus University of Thrace and Visiting Lecturer at the European Institute of Nice.


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Egyptian TV Host Youssef Al-Husseini Following London Mosque Attack: The Muslims Have Contributed Nothing But Terror, So Why Do You Expect Them to Love You? - MEMRI


"Why do they hate us?! If they didn't, there would be something mentally wrong with them."

Youssef Al-Husseini is an Egyptian journalist and TV host, who has worked for several Egyptian TV channels. Since 2011, he has been working for ON TV. He also writes columns for leading Egyptian newspapers, including Roz Al-Yusuf, Al-Yawm Al-Sab'i, and others. Following the vehicular attack outside a London mosque on June 19, Al-Husseini said: "Why do they hate us?! If they didn't, there would be something mentally wrong with them." Claiming that the Muslims have contributed nothing to the West except slaughter, massacres, and terror attacks, Al-Husseini said: "And you still expect them to love us?!" His address aired on ON TV on the day of the attack.


Youssef Al-Husseini: "The terror attack that unfortunately took place [in London] was a vehicular attack. This time, it was near a mosque, if you follow the news. How can anyone decide to carry out a terror attack near a place of worship - near a mosque, a church, or any temple where God is worshipped? In all the previous vehicular attacks, at least in 2016 and 2017, the "heroes" were, unfortunately, Muslims. And then people wonder why they hate us. 

"Why do they hate us?! If they didn't, there would be something mentally wrong with them.  

"[We] use weapons all the time, slaughter people all the time, flay people all the time, burn people alive all the time, run people over all the time, and plant explosive devices and car bombs all the time.

"Why do you still expect them to love you?"

"Tell me what the Muslims have contributed to the world throughout the 20th century? Nothing. What have the Turkish Muslims of the Ottoman state contributed to the West? Slaughter, massacres, the impaling of Europeans on spears... It's true. That's what the Turks did in Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries. What did the Muslim Turks do to their Arab neighbors, most of whom are Muslims? They enslaved them, tortured them, imposed inflated taxes upon them. They made their lives unbearable. What did the Muslims contribute to the West in the 19th and 20th centuries, except for the theories of Maududi, Sayyid Qutb, Abu Bakr Naji, and Osama Bin Laden? What did the Muslims contribute to the West? Don't say to me: "The literature of Naguib Mahfouz and the science of Ahmed Zewail." The [achievements] of these people cannot be attributed to their being Muslims.

"What have the Muslims shown [the West] other than the bombing of their capital cities? What have the Muslims shown them other than vehicular attacks? What have the Muslims shown them other than shooting at them? What have the Muslims shown them other than burning them alive in cages? They burn other Muslims alive as well. They all claim to have a monopoly over Islam.

"What have the Muslims shown [the Westerners] to make them love them, and welcome them in their countries?

"After all this, you still ask me why they hate us?! And then people invent new terms, like "a global conspiracy against Islam." Man, a global conspiracy against Islam would mean that the Muslims are being massacred around the world. The opposite is true. It is the non-Muslims who are being massacred. Am I right, or what? Then you say to me: Have you considered the Muslim minorities in India or Mali? To tell you the truth, what I see is Muslims perpetrating massacres against Christians and other majorities across the globe.

"The Muslims are constantly whining, lamenting, and wailing: The West is conspiring against us. Fine, let's assume that the West is conspiring against you and only sees your negative image. Where is your positive image? The Muslims of the Abbasid state presented a positive image. They exported scientific research through the so-called "Muslim" scholars, most of whom, by the way, were not from the Arabian Peninsula. None of them were from the Arabian Peninsula. They were all from North Africa, and from what are now called the former Soviet Islamic republics of central Asia.

"What have the Arab countries contributed to the world? Nothing. What have the Islamic countries contributed to the world? Nothing. What have they contributed in the field of scientific research? Two, three, four, or ten scientists in the course of 1,435 years? C'mon, man! Let's forget about 435 years and keep just one millennium. Ten important scientists in 1,000 years?! Who invented the airplane? The missile? The space shuttle? Centrifuges? Quantum mechanics? The Theory of Relativity? Who? Where did the most important philosophers come from? Not from here. And you still expect them to love us?! And then you say: "Terror-sponsoring countries like Britain deserve..." Nonsense! People do not deserve to be killed, slaughtered, or run over by a car." 



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Pay for Gazan Electricity? Clarifying the “Israeli Interest” - Maj. Gen. (res.) Gershon Hacohen

by Maj. Gen. (res.) Gershon Hacohen

The time has come to put an end to the extortion the enemy practices.

Gaza street, image by Natalia Cieslik/World Bank
BESA Center Perspectives No. 508, June 25, 2017

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The electricity crisis in Gaza offers an opportunity for the Israeli government to promote security objectives. It must keep Gaza stable and maintain the separation between the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority and Hamas. The time has come to put an end to the extortion the enemy practices. 

This summer marks ten years since Hamas took over Gaza.

The Gaza Strip’s predicament was already seen as irresolvable in the years following the War of Independence. On October 28, 1956, Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion outlined the Sinai Campaign to the government. When Minister Mordechai Bentov wanted to know the purpose of the campaign, Ben-Gurion replied: “Regarding the Gaza Strip, I fear that it is a heavy burden for us; if I believed in miracles I would pray that it would sink into the sea. But the fedayeen bases must be destroyed so that the border residents can live a normal life” (The Renewed State of Israel, 527 [Hebrew]).

The complexity of the situation in Gaza came to the fore last week in the electricity crisis. The well-reasoned approach to the problem of Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman reveals that complexity. While his demand that the Strip be demilitarized as a condition for its rehabilitation appears straightforward and justified, the sheer absurdity of the situation was reflected in his accompanying question: why shouldn’t the Hamas government pay for the electricity? They collect taxes from the population; they can foot the bill. Lieberman rightly emphasized that Hamas funnels most of its resources into a military buildup while foisting the civilian population’s distress on Israel and the international community. This is certainly true, but addressing it directly runs the risk that the already complex situation will spiral out of control.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared that this is an internal conflict between the Palestinian Authority, with Mahmoud Abbas at the helm, and Hamas, and that Israel should not allow itself be forced to take responsibility for the humanitarian distress caused by that conflict. He also stressed that Israel has no interest in seeing the situation deteriorate into war. Gen. (res.) Amos Gilad, who has a deep knowledge of the reality, explained that Hamas, as a political and military entity, is in no way a partner for negotiations or any sort of compromise. The group’s new “Document of General Principles and Policies,” which it published last month, reemphasized its unwavering commitment to the path of resistance: “Palestine symbolizes the resistance that shall continue until liberation is accomplished, until the return is fulfilled … Hamas rejects any alternative to the full and complete liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea.” If that’s the case, why should Israel pay for their electricity? How can one offer to build them a seaport?

Strength in Division

There are other aspects, hidden from view, that point to practical recommendations of a different kind.

Israel’s disengagement from Gaza in the summer of 2005, and the Hamas takeover in the summer of 2007, caused a split between the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and the Hamas regime in the Strip. Although it is better for the official state of Israel not to take an open stance on this division, in many ways it constitutes an Israeli interest that is worth maintaining.

Col. (res.) Jacques Neriah, who was Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin’s adviser on the Oslo process, spoke of the anxiety that gripped Rabin when he saw what the Palestinian demand for “safe passage” between Gaza and Mount Hebron really meant. The links between these two entities were weak even before they emerged divided from the War of Independence. Reconnecting them would likely endanger the IDF’s control of the West Bank.

With Gaza having become saturated with weapons over the past ten years, renewing traffic between Gaza and Hebron would enable weapons and extensive operational know-how to infiltrate the West Bank, probably necessitating a change in the IDF’s modes of activity. For example, if the IDF now enjoys full operational flexibility in light vehicles, without tanks, both in the West Bank’s refugee camps and in the heart of its Palestinian towns, it is because the Palestinians of the West Bank do not have advanced weapons. It is the West Bank’s isolation that prevents the emergence of armor-piercing weapons such as RPGs and sophisticated roadside charges. That isolation must be maintained.

On the strategic level as well, the division between Gaza and the West Bank is an Israeli interest. The reason Israel’s position has deteriorated from the Rabin framework, which envisaged a Palestinian state mainly restricted to Areas A and B, to the Clinton Parameters, which demanded a sovereign Palestinian state along with an almost complete Israeli withdrawal to the 1967 borders, is the Palestinian power of extortion, which feeds on Israeli anxiety over the demographic threat.

Gaza’s separation from the Palestinian Authority, coupled with its de facto emergence as a sovereign state, has greatly diminished this power of extortion. Now that a Hamas state exists in Gaza as a separate sovereign entity, Israel can, without trepidation, offer the Palestinians a choice between two alternatives: either apply the full potential of the PA’s control of the West Bank territories it has held since January 1996, as Rabin proposed to them, or combine with Israel into a single state.

The Potential Threat Has Grown

Meanwhile, since the Palestinian system became bifurcated, it has pursued a dual strategy: the Hamas component is mainly responsible for resistance, while the governmental component in Ramallah takes the diplomatic tack. Israel’s interest is to impede the network of covert links between these two components.

When, for example, Israel thwarted the Marmara convoy, it actually served an American interest of strengthening Abbas and weakening Hamas. Indeed, when in the aftermath of Operation Protective Edge objections were raised to the idea of helping to construct a Gaza seaport, the dominant assumption was that it is not desirable to bolster Hamas, as doing so would undermine Abbas. The time has come to recognize that Israel’s tacit interest is actually the opposite.

If so, the issue of paying for electricity and of the overall humanitarian situation in Gaza emerges in a different light. In this context, Israel has two interests: first, to maintain stability in Gaza; and second, to maintain the separation, even to the point of tacitly cultivating Hamas in Gaza as a sovereign entity.

It appears that the potential security threat that is developing in Gaza will grow. Although helping build a Gaza seaport will not soften Hamas’s attitudes towards Israel, it can generate momentum that in many regards will serve Israel’s interests. It is recommended that Israel, as a regional power, pursue an approach that better serves its full range of interests, both overt and covert.

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This article was first published in Israel Hayom on June 16, 2017.

BESA Center Perspectives Papers are published through the generosity of the Greg Rosshandler Family
Maj. Gen. (res.) Gershon Hacohen is a senior research fellow at the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies. He served in the IDF for forty-two years. He commanded troops in battles with Egypt and Syria. He was formerly a corps commander and commander of the IDF Military Colleges.


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First Russian base for SE Syria - near US garrison - debkaFile

by debkaFile

-- it will provide Russia with a lever of control over the volatile Syrian southeast and its borders, where US-backed and Iranian-backed forces are fighting for dominance.

New Russian base in SE Syria

The Russian engineering corps has started building a new base in southeastern Syria at a small village called Khirbet Ras Al-Wa’r in the Bir al-Qasab district. Until now, Moscow adhered to a policy of restricting its military presence to the western part of the country along the Mediterranean coast; no Russian troops were based further east than Palmyra.

The new facility is the first to be established since Moscow’s initial military intervention in the Syrian war in September, 2015. debkafile’s military sources say it will provide Russia with a lever of control over the volatile Syrian southeast and its borders, where US-backed and Iranian-backed forces are fighting for dominance. . Russian forces will also stand closer than ever before to the Israeli border - 85 kilometers from central Golan and 110 kilometers from southern Golan, not far from IDF military positions.

The new Russian foothold will be located strategically 96 kilometers from northern Jordan and 185 kilometers from the American and Jordanian special forces garrison at the al-Tanf crossing inside the Syrian, Jordanian and Iraqi border triangle.

Placing the new base just 50 kilometers from Damascus serves another primary function, that of securing  the strategic crossroads leading from eastern and southern Syria to the capital - in other words, propping up the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad. 

Our intelligence sources note that construction on the new Russian base began concurrently with the resumption his week of secret US-Russian talks in the Jordanian capital, Amman. They are led by Michael Ratney, the special US envoy for Syrian affairs and Aleksandr Lavrentiev, for Moscow.

There were reports on Thursday, June 22 of a trilateral accord reached between the US, Russia and Jordan for creating a demilitarized zone in southern Syria, that would also cover the Israeli and Jordanian borders. debkafile sources assert that no such accord has been reached. According to our information, the Russians put on the table a three-part plan for de-conflicting the incendiary situation in southeast Syria.  We can reveal its main points:

1. American forces will continue to hold the al-Tanf crossing. In return, they will agree to Iranian, Syrian and Hizballah forces capturing from ISIS - and holding - the border town of Abu Kamal, further to the north.

2. Moscow will guarantee the withdrawal of Iranian troops, pro-Iranian militias and Hizballah forces from southeastern Syria region at some point in the process.

3. A joint US-Russian administration will be established to conduct the day-to-day affairs of southeastern Syria, including the areas along the Israeli and Jordanian borders.

Washington has so far turned Moscow down on this plan for two reasons: First, the Syrian army’s conquest of Abu Kamal would strengthen Iran’s grip on the Syria-Iraq border area, the prevention of which is a primary US objective. And second, the Americans want Iranian and Hizballah forces out of the region before any other steps are taken - instead of later, as per the Russian guarantee. This, the Russian negotiators were not prepared to concede.



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The 'reward' of every Temple Mount rioter: 4,500 shekels a month - Arutz Sheva Staff

by Arutz Sheva Staff

Every 'Mourabitoun' and 'Murabitat' received a monthly salary of 4,500 shekels for harassing Jewish visitors on the Temple Mount.

Jewish visitors on Temple Mount
Jewish visitors on Temple Mount
Zac Wajsgras/Flash90
A Turkish organization funded partially by the Turkish government invested in a project intended to bring 500 thousand Israeli Arabs to the Al-Aqsa Mosque “to protect it against Israeli invasion and the threat of its destruction,” according to an investigation by Israel Hayom.

The journalist Nadav Shragai reported that an organization called “Mirasimiz” (“Our Heritage,” - ed.) organized mass transportation to the Old City of Jerusalem, allotting 11.5 million shekels for this purpose. The transportation project was to have continued for many months, and the organization obtained 11 buses and hired dozens of additional buses every week to execute the project.

Among those transported by the organization were the agressive men's group “Mourabitoun” and women's group "Murabitat,” under the auspices of the northern branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel, who later became illegal after they created riots on the Temple Mount, cursing and attempting to threaten and disrupt Jewish visits to the site.

The program included many schools from the Arab sector in Israel, and the organization also made sure to distribute water and food costing 7.5 million shekels to those it was transporting to the Temple Mount.

The Shin Bet discovered that, in exchange for their presence on the Temple Mount and their harassment of Jewish visitors to the site, each one of the Mourabitoun and Murabitat received a monthly salary of 4,500 shekels a month.

Mirasimiz, according to Israel Hayom, also deals with the buying, fixing, and maintaining buildings in the Old City of Jerusalem near the Temple Mount.

The leader of the organization speaks in the style of Turkish President Erdogan, and envisions a future revival of Jerusalem in the spirit of the Ottoman heritage. He said that international law in Jerusalem is Ottoman law, and Turkey has a right to get involved in Jerusalem because the city is the inheritance of the Ottomans.

Arutz Sheva Staff


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What Sharia Prescribes: Same as the Ten Commandments? - Nonie Darwish

by Nonie Darwish

Islam was created 600 years after Christianity not to affirm the Bible, but to discredit it

  • Islam was created 600 years after Christianity not to affirm the Bible, but to discredit it; not to co-exist with "the people of the book" -- Jews and Christians -- but to replace them.
  • It is hard to read Islamic law books without concluding that Islamic values are essentially "a rebellion against the Ten Commandments".
  • Islam violates the commandment "Thou shalt not kill" when Allah commanded Muslims to kill Allah's enemies, and in the process, kill and be killed in jihad if they are to be guaranteed heaven.
  • Accepting a parallel legal system would effectively nullify actual freedom for many of the people possibly forced to use it, and the ability to receive equal justice under law. Sharia is the reason there is a death warrant out on this author, on Salman Rushdie and others, for apostasy.
Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, of the "Ground Zero mosque", once again wrote a deeply inaccurate article reprimanding Americans for their supposedly "right-wing caricature" of Islamic law, sharia, which he insists is not a threat to American law. In his recent article "The silly American fear of sharia law", he denied that sharia is incompatible with US laws and the constitution. Oh, really?

Imam Rauf tries to blame sharia's amputation and stoning on Biblical Law:
"Sharia is not about amputations and stoning. These extreme punishments carry over from earlier, biblical law" and "Within the history of Islam, they have rarely occurred. What Islamic law does prescribe are the same do's [sic] and don'ts of the Ten Commandments."
Imam Rauf's article is, to say the least, misleading -- especially regarding the Ten Commandments. Sharia is not only incompatible with Western legal system but is the direct opposite of Western values; it has violated all ten of the Ten Commandments.

Islam was created 600 years after Christianity not to affirm the Bible, but to discredit it; not to co-exist with "the people of the book" -- Jews and Christians -- but to replace them. It is hard to read Islamic law books without concluding that Islamic values are essentially "a rebellion against the Ten Commandments."

Islam has little respect for human life -- of either Muslims or non-Muslims. To begin with, Islam violates the commandment "Thou shalt not kill." Sharia punishes sins against Allah, such as blasphemy and apostasy, with execution. This is while it prohibits prosecuting Muslims who kill apostates, and also parents and grandparents who kill their offspring. Allah commands Muslims to kill Allah's enemies, and in the process, kill and be killed in jihad if they are to be guaranteed heaven.
"Surely Allah has purchased of the believers their lives and their belongings and in return has promised that they shall have Paradise.106 They fight in the Way of Allah, and slay and are slain. Such is the promise He has made incumbent upon Himself in the Torah, and the Gospel, and the Qur'an.107 Who is more faithful to his promise than Allah? Rejoice, then, in the bargain you have made with Him. That indeed is the mighty triumph." (9:111)
The concept of adultery and loyalty in marriage is totally different. Loyalty is expected from the woman under penalty of death, but men have a lot of room in that regard, the result of the rights of polygamy and temporary marriage for Muslim men. Thus, in Islam, the concept of marriage as a covenant of loyalty between one man and one woman does not exist.

In regards to stealing, let us not be fooled by Islam's barbaric punishment for stealing with amputation of limbs. Islam is serious about stealing only when a Muslim steals from other Muslims. Killing and stealing are even connected in Islam: after killing non-Muslims in jihad, Muslims are rewarded with their property, their homes, businesses, women, and children, all of which are regarded legitimate booty, or spoils of war. Some people claim this does not exist today, but just try telling that to Middle Eastern Christians and Jews who have been robbed of their property and their land, and whose homes have been taken by Muslims.

A leading imam and professor at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee, Yasir Qadhi has said, "Muslims have the right to take the property of filthy Christians and Jews." Qadhi has been described by the New York Times Magazine as "one of the most influential conservative clerics in American Islam."

Qadhi justifies stealing from Jews and Christians as "a means to establish monotheism on the land." He quotes Muhammad saying "I have been commanded to fight the people until they" convert and explains that "if they don't, their life and property are halal [free for the taking] to the Muslims."

In regard to truthfulness in sharia, again, as with stealing, Islam has many loopholes, and sharia clearly states that lying is an obligation under certain conditions, such as if it is for the benefit of Islam.

As to contentment and coveting thy neighbor's house and wife, Islam again uses coveting to lure Muslims to perform jihad.

The whole concept of jihad is a brazen violation of the Tenth Commandment: it means conquest over non-Muslims and taking what they have.

Islamic books tell us that Muhammad did not just covet the possessions of his non-Muslim enemies. When he desired the wife of his adopted son Ali, he had a revelation making it legitimate and holy for Ali to divorce his wife and Muhammad to marry her.

The Tenth Commandment -- Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's -- is utterly alien to Islamic values; Islamic books are full of examples of stripping Allah's enemies of their possessions, homes, property, trading caravan goods, women, and children.

The American people are not at all silly for opposing sharia. Even the supposedly benign laws of sharia regarding marriage and divorce that Imam Rauf claims are a religious right, totally destroy a woman's right to divorce and retain custody of her children.

Accepting sharia in the US would totally change the Western concept of marriage by allowing polygamy, wife-beating, female genital mutilation, rape and marrying children.

Any legal system that governs a nation and that is being exported needs be scrutinized. Accepting a parallel legal system would effectively nullify actual freedom for many of the people possibly forced to use it, and be gross negligence against American citizens, their freedom, and above all the ability to receive equal justice under law.

Sharia is the reason there is a death warrant out on this author, and well as for Salman Rushdie and others, for free speech and apostasy, and why I am unable to visit my country of origin, Egypt, or any country where Muslims are in a majority.

No, Imam Rauf, fear of sharia is not "silly"; it is probably the most clear-eyed, desperately urgent fear that anyone who cares about freedom can have.

(Image source: Texas Attorney General's Office/Wikimedia Commons)

Nonie Darwish, born and raised in Egypt, is the author of "Wholly Different; Why I chose Biblical Values over Islamic Values"


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Trump's Presidency Reaffirms Nationalism over the Globalist Ideal - E. Jeffrey Ludwig

by E. Jeffrey Ludwig

To this eminent group of visionaries (totalitarians hiding behind “vision”), deplorables do not understand that ideas like life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness have to be differently conceived to apply to all the nations of the world.

Decades ago, while walking across the campus of one of our elite institutions to receive an award, I was accompanied by Professor Charles Price, a brilliant chemist with degrees from Swarthmore and Harvard. Professor Price informed me that he was president of the World Federalists. I had never heard of that organization, and asked him what the group stood for. He told me that they were working towards one-world government. I was not consciously shocked by his statement, but at some level must have been stunned and confused since I never forgot it.

Like many of my naïve peers, I assumed that the United Nations had been created at the end of World War II as a forum to bring the nations of the world together, to enter into constructive, problem-solving dialogue, and to “put some teeth” into the world’s aspiration for peace. Vicious aggressions could be stopped. War could not be banished, but the most egregious invasions and acts of hatred could be mitigated and often prevented entirely.

However, over time, with serious study and intense observation, it became apparent that the United Nations was intended as a different type of power grab. For many of those who participated in its founding, it was conceived as an alternative to national sovereignty. This push by Democrats for a United Nations was a continuation of the work of Woodrow Wilson. In his push for a League of Nations at the end of World War I, he was defeated in the Senate by Henry Cabot Lodge and the Republicans who clearly saw the League as a threat to U.S. sovereignty. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt picked up the cudgel and, with the help of Winston Churchill, pushed the supranational UN onto center stage. 

Who in their right mind would be willing to sacrifice the beautiful mores and legal/cultural independence of the U.S. on the altar of a remote and bureaucratic “globalism?” At best, the United Nations could be conceived as “loosely united,” and not binding its members into a tight confederation with taxing and police powers, or infringing upon our free speech, free religion, or freedom of assembly. This writer considers himself first, foremost, and always as a citizen of the United States of America whatever threats or problems might arise, and my original embrace of the UN was, to my simplistic thinking, another step in adding to my happiness as a citizen of this great land. Yet, at a fundamental level, the UN’s goals are incompatible with the founding goals of the U.S. In the UN’s Declaration of Human Rights, that document does not affirm “the pursuit of happiness,” but “life, liberty, and security of person” as our basic “rights.”

How could the freedoms won by a Revolutionary War against Great Britain become gradually subsumed under the guidance, supervision, or actual governance of another supra-national state or body? Perhaps there are many today, 72 years later, who are still connected to that la-la fantasy, who are unaware that post-World War II multilateralism is a conscious and insidious attempt to co-opt our national sovereignty and values. The elitist left is globalist. Whether they want a New World Order (Republicans) or a Global Village (Democrats) they imagine themselves as being in charge of the U.S. which in turn will captain the ship of this "global paradise." Of course this will necessitate changes. We will export some of our better ideas, but we shall also have to "import" cultural norms of other countries. Thus, what was considered "uniquely American" up to 82 years ago will have to be "modified." The deplorables do not understand that all progress involves change.

To this eminent group of visionaries (totalitarians hiding behind “vision”), deplorables do not understand that ideas like life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness have to be differently conceived to apply to all the nations of the world. Likewise, faith, freedom, and family. Likewise "private property." To promote peace and security for all, under our wise guidance of course, we have to evolve. We evolve to place greater and greater trust in those who have evolved most in terms of consciousness. The evolved consciousness of our elite global leaders has been learned largely at the uniquely evolved institutions of higher learning. It is no accident that so many presidential candidates and aspirants have graduated from Ivy League institutions.

The fight against nationalism or patriotic nationalism or exceptional national identity is not to be confused with chauvinism or hypernationalism. So often, even in high school textbooks, nationalism is portrayed as a cause of World War I, when actually, as the war guilt clause of the Treaty of Versailles forced Germany to admit, it was German hypernationalism and aggressive intentions that caused WWI, not nationalism in a general sense implicating Great Britain, France, or the U.S. 

Defense of borders is not an updated form of seeking demographic lebensraum (living space), which was Adolf Hitler’s excuse for expansionism and conquest. Nationalism in a general sense was not the cause of World War II. Rather it was Japanese militarism and seeking to control extraterritorial petroleum supplies that drove their vicious militancy. Nazism had its own dynamic, combining Hitlerian megalomania and ignorant race theory (Aryans are superior racially to its neighbors and thus should rule over those neighbors) with a tremendous resentment about the German loss of WWI. Jews and the Allied Powers became objects of incredible malice as “defeat” in WWI was rationalized as unnecessary and unacceptable. The Nazis picked up the gun again to “right the wrong” of defeat.

Further, since the end of WWII, the malevolent left has depicted America not as a “city on a hill” as the Puritan forefathers envisioned our civilization, but as a malevolent bastion of racism, sexual oppression, economic exploitation, and, despite the rhetoric of equality, a country that has despotically oppressed the poorer non-white non-male members of our society. With this background in mind, one can see how the America First nationalism – the patriotic nationalism – of President Trump is anathema to the left. Since the U.S. is a rotten racist country, then Trump’s nationalism makes him a racist to their benighted understanding. His desire to reduce the debt is not a prudent philosophy of governance, but an attempt to serve the interests of an exploitative capitalist class, the top 1%. His desire to protect our borders is part and parcel of the so-called imperialist impulse of Manifest Destiny that led us, illegitimately, to take control of the Southwest and crush Mexico in the Mexican War of 1848. In short, his patriotic nationalism connotes for these uninformed and brainwashed illiterates everything the left finds wrong with the U.S.

By rejecting the U.S, what is the alternative those violent leftists seek? They seek a global alternative where left-wing leaders, bureaucrats in Brussels and Geneva, and Islamists bring the out-of-control exploitative U.S. to heel. The global control will put some brakes on the U.S. imperialism, racism, and exploitation. To them, the idea of the U.S. as the land of opportunity, of freedom and of hope is hogwash, and must be suppressed. 

The U.S. has moved further and further away from a beautiful patriotic nationalism to a globalism and world government trajectory that is a threat to our national identity as well as our national interests. President Trump, elected against phenomenal odds, is trying to correct this anti-nationalistic concept which has gained too much ground over the decades. He is making some headway. His election is itself headway. And the animals in the cage -- imprisoned by their own false values -- are becoming enraged. Trump, when he announced we were pulling out of the Paris Climate Accords, revealed in no uncertain terms that U.S. sovereignty is still a valid principle. Despite the rabid critics of the left, we are still a precious land, and our interests should and do come first. In his speech from the Rose Garden, he said, “…our withdrawal from the agreement represents a reassertion of American sovereignty.” I give thanks that there are still so many deplorables in our country, and that the legacy of Professor Price, announced to me decades ago, is being resisted.

E. Jeffrey Ludwig


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The DNC Scams the Suckers and Contradicts the Feds on 'Hacking' - Clarice Feldman

by Clarice Feldman

I never bother reading spy and mystery novels anymore -- real life events are far more intriguing to me

Daniel Greenfield reveals why there’s no mystery behind the Democratic loss in Georgia, while Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and the George Washington University Profiling Project Deepen the Mystery of the “Russian Hacking” narrative.

There was a great deal of press this week about the District 6 Georgia Congressional race in which once again -- for the fourth time -- the hyped “referendum on Trump” produced a Republican victory over a Democratic challenger in a special election.

As usual, David Burge tweeted the most succinct wrap up of the left-wing take on their latest failure to recapture Congress and impeach Trump:
“David Burge‏ @iowahawkblog
So I gather GA06 has suddenly gone from Enlightened Sunbelt Suburban Panera Voters back to Inbred Reactionary Neo-Confederate Klansmen”
When hyping the Ossoff-Handel race, the media regularly misrepresented the district (Newt Gingrich’s former seat) as rock-ribbed Republican when in fact has become more Democratic due to redistricting, and the race was tighter than represented. But as Daniel Greenfield – alone -- observed, the race was hyped as winnable only to fill the Democratic coffers. It was never likely that Jon Ossoff, a pajama boy who didn’t even live in District 6, was going to beat Karen Handel, a well-known and respected District 6 resident no matter how much money the Democrats spent there.

So why did the Democrats pour $31 million down the drain to advance his doomed candidacy? Daniel Greenfield explains: the DNC is badly short of cash and spun this (and the three losing races which preceded it) to raise cash for itself and its infrastructure.

Most of the money came through Act Blue, the big DNC fundraiser. And much of the money raised went to Canal Partners Media Mothership Strategies and Mission Control, Inc. the Democrats’ infrastructure.
[Ossoff] was sucker bait. And the suckers bit hard enough to make a special election in a conservative district the most expensive House race in history.
Ossoff was a great way for Washington D.C. campaign pros to extract money from Bay Area lefties. His campaign had nine times more individual donations from California than from Georgia. He had almost four times more donations from nine Bay Area counties than all of Georgia.
The Dems lost and they’re laughing all the way to the bank.
There was much fussing in the Bay Area over snarky Republican ads in the race taking potshots at them. If they had any sense, they would be far more offended by the greedy contempt of their political allies.
The Democrats have gone far to the left partly because of a profitable machine for transmuting the left’s worst instincts into money. The Washington Post scored record profits by tempting lefties with fake news promises of impeachment. The special elections scam offered lefties the seductive idea that throwing away millions on a doomed cause would somehow reverse Trump’s victory.
Hey, it worked for Jill Stein, didn’t it?
Angry, emotional people do stupid things. Like wear pink hats and shout in public about their private parts, subscribe to the Washington Post because they think it can deliver Watergate on demand or plow millions into backing an annoying hipster with no credentials in Newt Gingrich’s old district.
Jon Ossoff’s slogan was “Make Trump Furious.” He failed even at that. But it isn’t Trump’s fury his backers were interested in. Instead they succeeded in cashing in on the angry stupid rage of the left.
The Press: Democratic Midwives

Once again, the DNC had the press shilling for its sting, but as Michael Goodwin wrote in a must read, journalistic standards died with the 2016 election:
I’ve been a journalist for a long time. Long enough to know that it wasn’t always like this. There was a time not so long ago when journalists were trusted and admired. We were generally seen as trying to report the news in a fair and straightforward manner. Today, all that has changed. For that, we can blame the 2016 election or, more accurately, how some news organizations chose to cover it. Among the many firsts, last year’s election gave us the gobsmacking revelation that most of the mainstream media puts both thumbs on the scale -- that most of what you read, watch, and listen to is distorted by intentional bias and hostility. I have never seen anything like it. Not even close. [snip] The realization that they had helped Trump’s rise seemed to make many executives, producers, and journalists furious. By the time he secured the nomination and the general election rolled around, they were gunning for him. Only two people now had a chance to be president, and the overwhelming media consensus was that it could not be Donald Trump. [snip] the so-called cream of the media crop was “engaged in a naked display of partisanship” designed to bury Trump and elect Hillary Clinton.
For the most part, I blame The New York Times and The Washington Post for causing this breakdown. The two leading liberal newspapers were trying to top each other in their demonization of Trump and his supporters. They set the tone, and most of the rest of the media followed like lemmings.
I found the whole concept appalling. What happened to fairness? What happened to standards? I’ll tell you what happened to them. The Times top editor, Dean Baquet, eliminated them. In an interview last October with the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard, Baquet admitted that the piece by his media reporter had nailed his own thinking. Trump “challenged our language,” he said, and Trump “will have changed journalism.” Of the daily struggle for fairness, Baquet had this to say: “I think that Trump has ended that struggle... We now say stuff. We fact check him. We write it more powerfully that [what he says is] false.”
Baquet was being too modest. Trump was challenging, sure, but it was Baquet who changed journalism. He’s the one who decided that the standards of fairness and nonpartisanship could be abandoned without consequence.
Having abolished journalistic standards in 2016, the trend is continuing. This week, the BBC was forced to retract -- at least online -- an outrageous headline respecting the story of an Israeli soldier stabbed to death in Jerusalem by three terrorists who were shot to death: “Three Palestinians killed after deadly stabbing in Jerusalem”.

On Facebook Daniel Goldstein offers up three updated headlines for a press which these days is acting merely as a security blanket for the coastal elites:

‪ "Reports of Anti-Japanese Hate Crimes Surge After Battleship Sinkings in Hawaii."
‪ "Ex-Marine Shot on Live TV By Restaurant Owner After Tumultuous Dallas Weekend."
‪ "Unilateral Planting of American Flag 239,000 Miles From Earth Renews World Fears of Expanded U.S. Colonial Ambitions Under Nixon."
It appears the FBI is now following the press lead in distorting events to fit a leftist Democratic narrative.

The Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway explains the gross misrepresentations in the FBI presser on the shooting of Congressman Steve Scalise:
James Hodgkinson was an active Democratic activist and Bernie Sanders campaign volunteer [whose office he visited] who hated Republican members of Congress. He held membership in multiple social media groups strongly opposed to Republicans, such as “The Road to Hell Is Paved With Republicans,” “Join the Resistance Worldwide,” “Donald Trump is not my President,” “Terminate the Republican Party,” “Boycott the Republican Party,” and “Expose Republican Fraud,” among dozens of other groups. He was a voracious consumer of liberal media and believed the conspiracy theory that Donald Trump colluded with Russia to secure the White House.”
The FBI admits that Hodgkinson:
• vociferously raged against Republicans in online forums,
• had a piece of paper bearing the names of six members of Congress,
• was reported for doing target practice outside his home in recent months before moving to Alexandria,
• had mapped out a trip to the DC area,
• took multiple photos of the baseball field he would later shoot up, three days after the New York Times mentioned that Republicans practiced baseball at an Alexandria baseball field with little security,
• lived out of his van at the YMCA directly next door to the baseball field he shot up,
• legally purchased a rifle in March 2003 and 9 mm handgun “in November 2016,”
• modified the rifle at some point to accept a detachable magazine and replaced the original stock with a folding stock,
• rented a storage facility to hide hundreds of rounds of ammunition and additional rifle components,
• asked “Is this the Republican or Democrat baseball team?” before firing on the Republicans,
• ran a Google search for information on the “2017 Republican Convention” hours before the shooting,
• and took photos at high-profile Washington locations, including the east front plaza of the U.S. Capitol and the Dirksen Senate Office.
We know from other reporting that the list was of six Republican Freedom Caucus members, including Rep. Mo Brooks, who was present at the practice.
So what does the FBI decide this information means? Well, the takeaway of the briefing was characterized well by the Associated Press headline about it: “FBI: Gunman who shot congressman had no target in mind.”
Iowahawk was more on point than the FBI field office:
David Burge‏ @iowahawkblog 3
Big takeaway for Democrats this week: $25 million in ad spending is less effective than shooting up a baseball practice
Speaking of mysteries, this week former DHS head Jeh Johnson testified that he was denied access to the reportedly hacked DNC servers. Former FBI head James Comey testified to the same effect earlier. Yet Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, head of the DNC during the supposed hacking, said that neither the DHS nor any federal agency had informed her of any hacking or sought access to the DNC servers. 

Either the DNC is lying or the Obama-era FBI head (Comey) and DHS head Johnson are. And if she’s not the liar, were the DNC servers actually hacked by the Russians or anyone at all?
Some believe that the murdered DNC staffer Seth Rich was the source for Wikileaks head Julian Assange, giving him access to the emails which, inter alia, revealed the DNC plot to deny Bernie Sanders the party’s nomination.

There was an interesting report on that murder this week. The crime-profiling project at George Washington University, aided by forensic experts issued a little-publicized report on the Rich murder.
After a three-month review and investigation into the death of Seth Rich, The Profiling Project notes the following:
1. Seth’s death does not appear to be a random homicide
2. Seth’s death does not appear to be a robbery gone bad
3. Seth death was more likely committed by a hired killer or serial murderer
4. There may be additional video surveillance of the crime and crime scene
5. The resolution of prosecuting the individual(s) responsible appears to be hindered both actively and passively
6. Seth’s killer(s) most likely remains free within the community"
In sum, the “Russian collusion” story was fabricated upon a foundation that the Russians “hacked” the DNC servers, the federal agencies involved in investigating such matters say the DNC denied them access to their servers to examine them, but the head of the DNC vehemently denies they ever contacted her about the suspected “hacking” or sought access to the servers. Someone, whom independent investigation indicates was a professional killer, murdered the chief insider suspect for the leaked emails on those servers and the search for the killer is being hindered “actively and passively.”

I never bother reading spy and mystery novels anymore -- real life events are far more intriguing to me.

Clarice Feldman


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Professor Posts His Wish For Whites: “Let Them F**king Die!” - Jack Kerwick

by Jack Kerwick

Another exhibit of academic rot.

Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut is another fine illustration of the contemporary state of Higher Education.  Johnny Eric Williams, a professor in its sociology department, is among the reasons why it enjoys this distinction.

On June 18, Williams—a black man—posted some blatantly anti-white remarks on his Facebook wall.  Supposedly, after they went viral, Trinity and Williams were besieged with threats. Such was the alleged intensity and nature of the threats that administrators closed campus on the day of June 21.

Williams, for his part, maintains that he never meant for his remarks to be made public and that he was deliberately misconstrued by “conservative” sites.

You be the judge of this.

Below are two of Williams’ posts from June 18. The first reads:

“It is past time for the racially oppressed to do what people who believe themselves to be ‘white’ will not do, put [an] end to the vectors of their destructive mythology of whiteness and their white supremacy system. #LetThemFuckingDie.

And then there was the second:

“I’m fed the fuck up with self identified ‘white’s’ daily violence directed at immigrants, Muslims, and sexual and racially oppressed people.  The time is now to confront these inhuman assholes and end this now.”  

On June 16, Williams shared on his page an article from the Medium.  The essay’s title is: “Let Them Fucking Die.”

The author, “Son of Baldwin,” prefaces his own remarks with a quotation from a Fusion piece that references the mass shooting of Republican Congressman Steve Scalise and his colleagues in Alexandria, Virginia.  The article notes “the irony” that Scalise, a person who “kept company with racists” and “white supremacists” and who is “one of the most anti-LGBTQ politicians in Washington,” “may owe his life to a queer black woman.”

Son of Baldwin expresses his frustration over what this episode “symbolizes.”  He asks: “What does it mean, in general, when victims of bigotry save the lives of bigots?”

The author launches into a rant that, in addition to being replete with lies, fallacies, and inaccuracies, suffers from a painfully conspicuous lack of originality.  We have all heard this tirade before, tirelessly, for decades.  It is the cardinal dogma of what I have elsewhere referred to as “Blackism,” precisely that ideology designed to grant instant racial “authenticity” to any and all blacks who affirm it:

Blacks are perpetual victims of perpetual White Oppression.

Son of Baldwin is clear as to the course of action that blacks who are in a position to help white “bigots” should take. His position is boldfaced type:

Let. Them. Fucking. Die.” 

But don’t just do this.  Blacks should “smile a bit” when they let white “bigots” die, for they “have done the universe a great service.”

And in case there is any ambiguity as to when, exactly, blacks should allow white “bigots” to die, Son of Baldwin tries his best to dispel it in advance.

“If you see them drowning,” “in a burning building,” “teetering on the edge of a cliff,” or if “their ships are sinking,” “their planes are crashing,” or “their cars are skidding,” blacks should smile as they let these white “bigots” die.

Bear in mind that while Son of Baldwin’s focus on white bigots would seem to suggest that he is not referring to all white people, it is a certitude to anyone familiar with Blackist newspeak, the rhetoric of “white supremacy,” “institutional racism,” “white supremacy” and the like—rhetoric, not incidentally, that both Son of Baldwin and Johnny Eric Williams espouse—that all white people are “bigoted.”

Son of Baldwin underscores this interpretation when he writes about “white/cisgender/heterosexuals who practice bigotry (or do not believe they practice bigotry even when they do)” (emphasis added) [.]”

This is article that Professor Williams shared.

Ever since Williams became the focal point of this controversy, he has maintained that he does not endorse allowing individual whites to die. Rather, it is for the death of a system of “white supremacy” that he calls.

“I’m calling for the death of a system, white supremacy, not the death of white people.”
The President of Trinity College, Joanne Berger-Sweeney, condemned Williams’ use of the hashtag, “LetThemFuckingDie,” as “reprehensible and, at the very least, in poor judgment.” She added that, “No matter its intent, it goes against our fundamental values as an institution [.]”  Before proceeding further, she has turned the matter over to the Dean of the Faculty to determine whether any college “procedures or policies were broken.”

Two Connecticut politicians, Republican House Leader Themis Klarides and state Senator George Logan, both Trinity graduates, wrote a letter to Berger-Sweeney imploring her to terminate Williams immediately.   “We are calling upon the school to immediately, and permanently, remove Mr. Williams from the ranks of the school’s faculty,” they state.

Perhaps Professor Williams is sincere when he insists that it is not the demise of individual whites, but, rather, that of a system that he wants to see die.  Judging from the quality, both stylistic and substantive, of his social media posts, this is a distinct possibility.  It is a distinct possibility that Williams is genuinely as intellectually inept as someone would have to be not to recognize that, grammatically and logically, his posts can only be read as a call for allowing white “bigots,” “ignorant assholes,” i.e. a plurality of beings, not a single “system,” to die.

The other option is that Williams is a coward and a liar who is now retreating from his initial position because of the backlash to it. Williams very well may be receiving the shock of his life in being made to realize that it isn’t just black leftist SJWs that can get angry, that when people understandably think that someone is calling for their deaths, they will call for the same in return.

At any rate, decent people must condemn the threats of violence against Williams that are now allegedly being made against him.  I for one won’t even call for his termination.  This, though, is only because Williams is but a symptom of a much larger system that has long since gone to the bad.

For sure, there remain many committed college instructors who care deeply about supplying their students with a genuine liberal arts education.  And, to be fair, many, possibly most, of these are liberal-left. Yet, regrettably, the Johnny Williams of the academy are legion.  The only difference between Williams and the untold numbers of humanities professors at colleges and universities throughout the country is that Williams got caught for expressing his anti-white vision.

Removing him would be like removing one cockroach from an infestation and thinking that the problem is solved.

The pressure that is now being brought upon Williams must be brought by the public upon the whole Academic Industrial Complex, for Williams’ view is but a variant of the intellectually vapid and morally toxic ideology that dominates academia today.     

Jack Kerwick


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