Changing Alliances In The Middle East

The Washington Post is reporting today that Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain have announced that they will cut air, sea and land links with Qatar, which hosts a forward base for the U.S. military’s Central Command and is home to the widely watched Al Jazeera network.

The article reports:

Some other countries later joined the four-nation bloc in cutting ties with Qatar, which is also the venue for the 2022 World Cup.

The feud — the most serious in decades among some the region’s most key Western allies — has been simmering for years as Qatar increasingly flexed its political muscle across the region, including backing the Muslim Brotherhood.

Qatar’s outreach often raised conflict with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, both of whom have sought to exert their own influence across the Arab world.

CBN News reported today:

“[Qatar] embraces multiple terrorist and sectarian groups aimed at disturbing stability in the region, including the Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS and al Qaeda, and promotes the message and schemes of these groups through their media constantly,” Saudi’s state news agency SPA wrote.

…For years, Doha has been a strong backer of Hamas, the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood ruling the Gaza Strip, and the Islamic Republic of Iran, the world’s largest state sponsor of terrorism.

The Muslim Brotherhood, founded in 1928 in Ismailia, Egypt, is often referred to as the “father” of today’s Islamic terror movements.

In 2014, after a turbulent year under long-time Muslim Brotherhood devotee Mohammed Morsi, Egyptians overwhelmingly elected former military chief Fattah Abdel el-Sisi as president.

Slowly, el-Sisi began to address Egypt’s dire economic straits while simultaneously routing Islamic terror cells embedded in the Sinai Peninsula, which had flourished during Morsi’s short-lived term in office.

Egypt, the Arab’s world’s largest country, is 80 percent Muslim, but the population rejected the Morsi administration’s efforts to impose stricter Islamic lifestyle on the country.

There is a certain amount of irony here. Evidently, Qatar has backed the wrong group of terrorists. Saudi Arabia is the home of Wahhabism, a militant form of Islam that gave us the men who attacked America on 9/11. However, our alliance with Saudi Arabia is based on the fact that they are willing to fight ISIS and that they have supported the trading of oil in American dollars. The Saudis are also very actively working behind the scenes to prevent America from becoming energy independent and ruining the monopoly that OPEC has held for so long. If you look at the funding of some of the environmental groups that have opposed drilling in various places and various pipelines, you will find Saudi money.

At any rate, President Trump has had a major impact on relationships in the Middle East. It will be interesting to see in the future is these new alliances work to curtail the funding and activities of terrorists.

Irony

This is irony at its best–it’s sad, but it is irony at its best.

Daniel Pipes is the president of The Middle East Forum. He is an affiliate professor at the University of Haifa. His bi-weekly column appears regularly in the Washington Times and in newspapers around the globe, including the Israel Hayom (Israel), La Razón (Spain), L’Opinione (Italy), and the Australian. His special interests include the role of Islam in public life, Turkey, the Arab-Israeli conflict, and U.S. foreign policy.

Mr. Pipes posted an article today on his blog that is totally ironic.

The article reports:

A local source in the Iraqi province of Nineveh announced on Friday, September 2, that the [ISIS] terrorist group has released an order, based on which no woman is allowed to be wearing niqab or burqa when entering the security and military centres. The decision, according to the source, came after some fully veiled women killed a number of ISIS commanders and members in the past months.

The article notes the irony:

(1) First irony: The ISIS rulers first require the burqa and then, realizing what a perfect cover it provides to attack themselves, ban it from sensitive areas. Should attacks on them continue, perhaps ISIS will have to ban the burqa from all public places, which would be quite a change.

2) Second irony: The most retrograde, extreme, and morbid Islamist regime on earth recognizes burqas as a danger to public security while the modern, moderate, and democratic states in the West remain clueless.

(3) Despite my frustration on this issue, I do believe it’s just a matter of more assaults and more time before Westerners wake up to this problem. But how many more must be gratuitously robbed, raped, and killed before that happens? (September 6, 2016)

It is time for the west to wake up to the danger the burqa represents. Even partially covering your face in your driver’s license picture represents a security risk. It’s time to put the safety of Americans before someone else’s dress code.

Is Anyone Paying Attention?

The Clarion Project reported today that U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson recently spoke at the annual Islamic Society of America (ISNA) event.

The article reports:

ISNA is a group with Muslim Brotherhood origins and an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terror-financing trial. In fact, the Holy Land Foundation was based within the ISNA building. ISNA also deposited checks into its account that were made out to the “Palestinian Mujahadeen [jihadi fighters],” the name used at the time for Hamas’s military wing. The funding was transferred to the Holy Land Foundation.

The ISNA conference that Johnson spoke at included extremist speakers, as it has done in previous years. This year’s speakers included Jamal Badawi, a founder of another Brotherhood entity, the Muslim American Society. Badawi has praised the terrorist organization Hamas, preached in support of “combative jihad” and was personally listed in a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood directory.

Another conference speaker was Nihad Awad, found and executive director of the Council on Islamic American Relations (CAIR), another U.S. Brotherhood entity and unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land terror financing case.

Johnson told conference participants, “Your story is the quintessential American story,” and was described by the Post as the “highest-ranking U.S. official to address an ISNA conference.”

However, the Post’s description of Johnson is misleading as President Obama himself addressed the 2013 ISNA convention in which he  praised the group for its partnership with his administration. That convention also featured a roster of speakers including many extremists.

One of Obama’s senior advisers, Valerie Jarrett, also spoke at ISNA’s 2009 convention. 

This is not a group we want to give any amount of credibility to. Their goal is to infiltrate the American government with the purpose of instituting Sharia Law. This is the link to one of the government exhibits from the Holy Land Foundation Trial. The first section is in Arabic, but the second section is the government’s translation. The document details the Muslim Brotherhood’s Plan to subvert American freedom and replace with Sharia Law. Take the time to follow the link and read the exhibit. It illustrates why it does not make sense to have Mr. Johnson as the head of Homeland Security or Valerie Jarrett as a Presidential advisor.

Until We End Summer Camps Like This, Jihad Is Going To Be A Problem

John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line yesterday about summer camp in Gaza. The article includes pictures of the camp activities that are going on under the supervision of Hamas’s Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam Brigades.

These are the pictures:

Camp1Camp2Camp3The article reports:

According to Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam officials, “the goal of the camps is to stoke the embers of jihad among the generation of liberation, to inculcate Islamic values and to prepare the army of victory for liberating Palestine.”

Look at the age of these children. It should break your heart that they are being robbed of their innocence and taught to hate.

I recently read The Blood of Lambs by Kamal Saleem. Kamal Saleem was recruited by the Muslim Brotherhood in Lebanon at the age of seven and trained as a terrorist. As a child, he was sent on suicide missions that he miraculously survived. He came to America to commit terrorism in America. The book tells the story of his training and his mission, and explains why he is no longer involved with the Muslim Brotherhood or in terrorism. The book illustrates the problem and gives the answer to the problem. However, until we stop funding children’s camps in Gaza and other places that train young jihadists, we will not see peace in the Middle East.

This Is Supposed To Be A Solution???

Last week we lost four valiant men in an attack on a recruiting center in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and there are reports this morning that a fifth man has died. This is not the first time a recruiting office has been attacked by someone with links to Islam. In 2009, an Army recruiting office in Little Rock, Arkansas, was attacked by Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad, born Carlos Leon Bledsoe. There is a documentary about how Carlos Bledsoe became Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad and how his family and the family of Andy Long, the soldier killed in the attack, have struggled with the loss of their sons. It is called, “Losing Our Sons,” and is worth watching.

We have a problem. The policy of making military bases a gun-free zone was signed into effect in February 1992 by Donald J. Atwood, deputy secretary of defense under President George H.W. Bush. Frankly, I think we have lost more soldiers because of this policy than we would have without it.

So what is the military going to do about the problem of Islamists shooting American soldiers in America? Well, the answer is further proof that government is not the solution–it is the problem.

Gateway Pundit posted an article yesterday about the military’s response to the shooting in Chattanooga.

This is a tweet sent by ABC News Pentagon reporter Luis Martinez on Friday evening:

chattanoogatweet

The article further reports:

Army chief of staff Gen. Ray Odierno said on Friday he has no plans to arm recruiters or add security patrols to military recruitment centers in the wake of the Islamist terror attacks on unarmed, unguarded military offices in Chattanooga, Tennessee on Thursday. Odierno basically said he doesn’t trust his troops to handle their weapons properly.

Also on Friday, the Marine Corps ordered recruiters to not wear their uniforms at work for ‘force protection.’

The whirring sound you hear is John Wayne spinning in his grave.

Libya Does Matter

Erick Stakelbeck posted a story on his blog entitled, “Why You Should Care About Libya.” I will admit that I never understood the need to remove Muammar Gaddafi after he began cooperating with the west in the War on Terror. If you remember, as a result of the American invasion of Iraq, in December 2003, Libya renounced its possession of weapons of mass destruction, decommissioning its chemical and nuclear weapons programs. At that point Libya’s relationship with the United States improved and seemed to be moving in a positive direction. Admittedly, his civil rights record was questionable at best, but it was no worse than any government that has followed him.

So why should I care about Libya?

The article explains:

While the West’s attention is focused on ISIS’s rampage through Iraq and Syria, Libya is fast becoming one of the world’s most dangerous and unstable countries–a hotbed of ISIS and Al Qaeda activity and ravaged by civil war. ISIS now wields a major presence in the Libyan cities of Sirte (where it recently seized a civilian airport) and Derna (where it has been battling other jihadist groups for supremacy) along the Mediterranean coast and is making further moves elsewhere in the country.

ISIS has also wasted no time extending its genocide against the Christians of Iraq and Syria to the shores of North Africa. In February, ISIS released a horrific video showing its jihadists beheading 21 Egyptian Christians on a Libyan beach. It issued a similar video in April showing the beheading and shooting of over a dozen Ethiopian Christians in Libya. And just last week, ISIS reportedly kidnapped 88 more Christians–this time, Eritreans–who were refugees traveling through Libya. These Eritrean Christians’ outlook for survival is obviously grim.

So why should you care about ISIS’s advances in Libya? For starters, Libya is rapidly becoming a terrorist safe haven–the kind of place where jihadists can train freely and plot attacks against the United States (see: pre-9/11 Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia, and the ISIS-held territories of Iraq and Syria). That’s bad enough. Worse still is Libya’s geographic proximity to Europe–it lies just 600 miles across the Mediterranean from Italy. And according to a recent Fox News report, ISIS is wasting no time using its Libya strongholds to transit into Europe:

“Refugees” have been pouring into Europe from Libya. In recent weeks, the Italians have picked up at least thirty ISIS fighters who have come into Italy from Libya. This is a threat to Europe and eventually to America.

So what was the regime change in Libya about? What was the Arab Spring really about? In his book Catastrophic Failure, Stephen Coughlin examines the timeline of the Arab Spring. He cites a Der Spiegel article explaining the goal of Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood to bring about the collapse of the Arab governments that were not based on Islamic Law. America, unfortunately, came down on the wrong side of history in the Arab Spring and simply strengthened Al Qaeda and helped bring chaos to the Middle East.

The Egyptian government has moved against the Muslim Brotherhood, sentencing many of its members to death, including former President Mohammed Morsi. Again, the civil rights record of the new Egyptian government is not good, but they have restored order and are eliminating the threat of the Muslim Brotherhood to Egypt. American needs to wake up to the threat the Muslim Brotherhood is to America. I strongly recommend reading “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America,” by the Muslim Brotherhood operative Mohamed Akram. This is one of the government exhibits from the Holy Land Foundation Trial. You can find more information at Discover the Networks.

There are many lessons we can learn from Libya and many reasons why Libya matters.

A Bad Deal Only Gets Worse

CNN is reporting today that Iran will not sign any nuclear deal until the economic sanctions are lifted.

The article reports:

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Islamic republic‘s supreme leader, meanwhile, told state-run media outlets he is neither in favor nor against the proposed deal because it isn’t final, and he’s not certain it will become binding because he has “never been optimistic about negotiations with the U.S.”

Six world powers and Iran reached a preliminary deal last week that aims to limit Tehran‘s nuclear program in exchange for lifting economic sanctions.

The United States, however, has stressed that if a final deal is reached with Iran, the removal of any sanctions will come in phases.

But work on the agreement isn’t finished.

Negotiators from Iran and the United States, China, Germany, France, Britain and Russia have until June 30 to come up with a final deal.

This is called ‘buying more time.’ I do fear that we will wake up one morning to an announcement from Iran that it now has a stockpile of nuclear weapons–those centrifuges are not spinning for nothing.

The economic sanctions are what brought Iran to the negotiating table. Does anyone actually believe that the Iranian nuclear program will stop once those sanctions are lifted?

The Canadians Get It Right

The Center for Security Policy posted an article yesterday about one aspect of the Countering Violent Extremism Summit hosted by President Obama. The Canadian Minister for Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness The Honorable Steven Blaney outlined the Canadian view on Islamic terrorism.

The article reports that view:

1. The threat is global: Unlike President Obama, whose Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) against ISIS seeks to limit U.S. options to just Iraq and Syria, we must recognize  the global element of the threat is vital. Jihadists from Somalia to France and from Mali to Norway are all looking to harm the U.S. and their allies wherever they can. Unless our response is equally global, it can not succeed.

2. The threat is jihad: Our enemies say they are called to wage jihad, a term which is defined by Islamic law. Reliance of the Traveller (a reputable book of Shafi’i Islamic law) establishes that, “Jihad means to war against non-Muslims and is etymologically derived from the word mujahada, signifying warfare to establish the religion.” That many individuals who identify as Muslim may not subscribe to this doctrinal requirement is a positive, but nonetheless the preference of individuals does impede the significance of a doctrinal requirement that motivates a large segment of a population..

3. The threat is a movement. It is not merely ISIS which has declared war against us and must be combated. Rather our fight is with all those who subscribe to the movement’s ideology which obliges them to wage war in order to “establish the religion.” Individual groups and leaders may morph, change or evolve, but the ideological heart of the movement remains the same, and until that is addressed, we will not prove victorious. And as a movement, those responsible for spreading and indoctrinating the ideology are as important (if not more so) than the frontline jihadists who engage in fighting or acts of terror.

Our Canadian neighbors understand the threat and are ready to fight back, even as our President is still quibbling over what to call it.

Giving Your Enemies The Rope To Hang You

Americans need to understand that Islam is not a religion that promotes tolerance of other religions. Saudi Arabia does not allow the building of Christian churches. In Muslim countries, Christians are routinely persecuted. Where Sharia Law is in force, Christians are killed or enslaved. That is the practice of Islam in its true form (when it is in control). When Islam is not in control, it appears to make peace with Christians until it gains control. Unfortunately, some American churches are being duped into believing that Islam is a friend of Christianity and that the two can work together. Since Islam regards Christianity as blasphemy against the prophet (punishable by death), working together should not be an option for Christians. However, some of us haven’t figured that out yet.

Paul Mirengoff at Power Line reported yesterday that the Washington National Cathedral will host a Muslim prayer service this Friday.

The Washington Post reported the story on Monday. The Washington Post story included the following:

The service, which will begin around 12:20 and is for invited guests only, developed out of a relationship between the cathedral’s director of liturgy, the Rev. Gina Campbell, and the South African ambassador to the United States, Ebrahim Rasool, who is Muslim. The two worked together on a memorial service for Nelson Mandela, Jaka said.

“This is a dramatic moment in the world and in Muslim-Christian relations,” Rasool said in a prepared statement. “This needs to be a world in which all are free to believe and practice and in which we avoid bigotry, Islamaphobia, racism, anti-Semitism, and anti-Christianity and to embrace our humanity and to embrace faith.”

The story at Power Line reminds us:

Deep into the Post’s story we learn that among the organizations sponsoring the prayer event are the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

The Post does not mention it, but both ISNA and CAIR are Islamist advocates of sharia law with a history of supporting terrorism.

An article posted at the Daily Caller yesterday fills in some of the blanks:

The Islamists expected at the cathedral include representatives from the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). In 2009, both groups were confirmed as co-conspirators in a conspiracy to deliver funds to the Gaza-based Hamas jihad group, which regularly launches attacks to kill Jews in Israel.

This year, Hamas launched more than 4,000 rockets at Jews in Israel, often from within civilian areas.

Hamas is an affiliate of the Egypt-based Islamist group the Muslim Brotherhood, which was ousted from power in Egypt by huge public protest in 2012. Both CAIR and ISNA have close ties to the brotherhood movement.

The Episcopal Church is allowing Muslims to hold a worship service in the Washington National Cathedral. What are the chances of a mosque in Saudi Arabia allowing the Catholics to hold a worship service there? I really think we need to take a closer look at this.

If you doubt that ISNA and CAIR are working against America, please follow the link to one of the exhibits in the Holy Land Foundation Trial. The first part of the exhibit is in Arabic, but the English translation starts on Page 16. Please read it. The Holy Land Foundation Trial began after a man and women were stopped on a bridge in Maryland where the woman was filming the structure of the bridge. Their home was searched as a result of an outstanding warrant, and a hidden basement revealed the documents outlining the plan to turn America into a country ruled by Sharia Law. The document lists the organizations involved and the plans. Things are actually moving forward in their plan and will continue to do so until more Americans wake up and begin fighting for the principles America was founded on.

Evidence Of The Decline Of America

On Monday, the Washington Post reported that Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) carried out a series of airstrikes in Tripoli, Libya. Neither country informed the United States before taking action.

The article reports:

The airstrikes appear tied to fear over the growing muscle of Islamist militias. The region’s monarchies and secular dictatorships are increasingly alarmed about Islamist gains from Libya to Syria and Iraq. And the airstrikes may signal a new willingness by some Arab states to take on a more direct military role in the region’s conflicts.

Various groups in Libya have been battling for control of the main Tripoli airport, and the strikes may have been a failed attempt to keep the strategic facility from falling to extremists.

Our intervention in Libya was a mistake. The only true justification for America’s getting involved was to protect the oil fields that supply Europe with oil. There is also some questions as to whether of not Gaddafi was planning to begin to trade oil in currency other than American dollars. If he had done that, it would have crashed the American economy. Gaddafi had turned over his weapons of mass destruction after the United States had invaded Iraq. He was a horrible dictator, but there was no assurance that he would be replaced with anything less horrible. The Obama Administration’s decision to bomb Libya as part of the ‘Arab Spring’ only strengthened the grip of the multiple terrorist groups in Libya and surrounding areas.

President Obama’s foreign policy in the Middle East has been a disaster. It will take years to restore the faith in the United States that our allies once had and to undo the damage President Obama has done by supporting the enemies of democracy.

Rewriting History For A Generation That Doesn’t Remember It

September 11, 2001 attacks in New York City: V...

September 11, 2001 attacks in New York City: View of the World Trade Center and the Statue of Liberty. (Image: US National Park Service ) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The attacks of September 11th in New York City, Washington, and Pennsylvania happened almost 13 years ago. There are many people in America under the age of 20 that have only vague memories of those attacks. We need to make sure we tell them the truth about the attacks. It would behoove us to realize that the people who initiated those attacks are still at war with us, even if we are no longer at war with them.

Well, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is hoping that as we remember those attacks in the museum that will open shortly at the site of the New York City attacks, we will forget what caused them.

CNS News posted an article today about the efforts of CAIR to urge organizers of the museum to edit a video presentation on al-Qaeda, to remove terms such as “Islamist extremism” and “jihadism.” That is the equivalent of removing the word Nazi from World War II history books about Germany.

The article reports:

CAIR said in a statement that the use in the video of terms like “Islamist extremism” and “jihadism” – and the “generalizing” way in which they are used – “conflate Islam and terrorism and carry the risk of misinforming museum visitors, particularly those unfamiliar with Islam.”

“After repeated requests to correct misrepresentations, the film ignorantly implies a religion, rather than a group of criminals, was to blame for the September 11 attacks,” said CAIR-NY board member Zead Ramadan. “Instead of unifying all Americans against evil-doers, this film continues to offensively cast suspicion on faith rather address the terrorist act.”

Note to CAIR: the people who hijacked the planes shouted, “allahu akbar.” That is not the shout of dedicated Methodists.

The hijackings of 911 were done in the  name of allah. The Koran encourages this sort of activity. Rewriting history does not change the facts, just as acting as if we are not at war with radical Islam does not change the fact that they are at war with us.

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Freedom Of Religion Is Not A Part Of The Islamic Philosophy

Yesterday ABC News posted a story about recent events in Dalga, Egypt. The article explains that the town was taken over by the supporters of former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi on July 3.

The article reports:

With the army and police already fighting a burgeoning militant insurgency in the Sinai Peninsula, there are growing signs that a second insurgency could erupt in the south — particularly in Minya and Assiut provinces, both Islamist strongholds and home to Egypt’s two largest Christian communities.

The takeover of Dalga has been disastrous for the Christian community in the town, located 270 kilometers (160 miles) south of Cairo in Minya, on the edge of the Nile Valley near the cliffs that mark the start of the desert.

In the initial burst of violence, the town’s only Catholic church was ransacked and set ablaze, like the Monastery of the Virgin Mary and St. Abraam. The Anglican church was looted.

Since the Morsi supporters took over the town, Christian homes have been looted and burned. Some homes have been spared because the Christians living in them have paid their Muslim neighbors to protect them.

This is an example of the government that can follow the removal of a Middle Eastern dictator. Unless we are prepared to take over a country until a moderate government can be established, we should not intervene in a civil war in the Middle East.

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The Muslim Brotherhood Is Not Going Quietly

CBN News posted a story today about the current unrest in Egypt. The ousting of President Morsi may have technically been a coup, but the people of Egypt were genuinely concerned about the direction that he had chosen for the country. The latest propaganda from the Islamists who supported President Morsi is that the Christians in Egypt were responsible for removing him from office. That propaganda has resulted in increased attacks on Christians in Egypt.

The article reports:

On Thursday, the body of a Christian merchant was found decapitated in a cemetery. Last Saturday, a Coptic Christian priest was shot by gunmen in an outdoor market.

Also, days after the military coup that removed Morsi from office, Muslim extremists in southern Egypt burned dozens of Christian homes and stabbed four believers to death.

“It’s part of the Brotherhood’s mobilization that they are targeting Christians, that they are renouncing them as behind this. If the Brotherhood is able to portray what happened as a Christian-dominated or Christian-driven protest, then they get to gain massive support in the streets,” Tadros (Samuel Tadros, a research fellow for the Hudson Institute) explained.

The former pope of Egypt’s Coptic Christian community encouraged believers to stay out of the public eye and politics for fear of backlash.

The military-backed government of Egypt has ordered the arrest of the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood and nine other members. The Muslim Brotherhood is suspected of instigating the violence outside the Republican Guard building in Cairo this week.

If Egypt is to be free, with all minorities having equal rights, the Muslim Brotherhood has to be kept out of power. The goal of the Muslim Brotherhood is to turn Egypt into a state similar to Iran–with Sharia Law, which does not allow religious freedom. Hopefully the people of Egypt who support freedom for everyone will make their voices heard.

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Democracy As We Know It Has Ended In Egypt Before It Even Began

Democracy in some countries means one election one time and no further voting. In Egypt it took three elections–one for the President and two for the constitution. The Australian reported today that the second vote on the constitution in Egypt will cement the rule of the Muslim Brotherhood.

The Muslim Brotherhood issued a statement saying:

“The Egyptian people continue their march towards finalising the construction of a democratic modern state, after turning the page on oppression,” the Brotherhood’s political arm, the Freedom and Justice Party, said in a statement.

This will mean the end of the Coptic Christians in Egypt. They will no longer have the freedom to worship that they previously enjoyed.

The article reports:

Rights groups say the charter limits the freedoms of religious minorities and women, while giving the military too much power.

Mr Morsi had to split the voting over two successive Saturdays after more than half of Egypt’s judges said they would not supervise the polling stations.

We will now be watching Egypt become an Islamist state similar to Iran. Sharia Law will eventually be instituted. This does not bode well for peace in the Middle East.

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One Of The Dangers Of The New Media

The credit for this article goes to DaTechGuyBlog. DaTechGuy truly represents the new media–he has his own radio show (Saturday morning 10-12 on WCRN 830 AM or on the internet at wcrnradio.com), he is on twitter, and he will go anywhere to follow a story. He lives in Fitchburg, Massachusetts, and was picking up a pizza in a local pizza place recently where the owner was watching a satellite channel in Arabic. The owner was talking to DaTechGuy about the use of violence by the Muslim Brotherhood to suppress the protests. Naturally, DaTechGuy looked into this.

The article posted at DaTechGuyBlog today shows some of the tweets coming out of Egypt describing what is happening. He posts capture shots of some tweets by Sandmonkey.  One of the tweets of Sandmonkey cites another tweeter, Gehad El-Hadd. Sandmonkey claims that El-Hadd is a liar.

My purpose in pointing this out is to show that the new media can be used for bad or for good. DaTechGuy points out that you have to go through five pages of El-Hadd’s tweets before you get to tweets in Arabic. Sandmonkey tweets both in Arabic and in English. So if most of El-Hadd’s tweets are in English, what audience is he aiming at?

An article in the Egypt Daily News posted yesterday stated:

The Muslim Brotherhood is waging a war of perception, not just for domestic consumption but for a western audience, too. Perception is crucial for two reasons: To defeat non-Islamist opponents, who may lose faith quickly when watching the endless number of pro-Morsy protestors in comparison to their relatively lower number in Tahrir and, secondly, to convince western nations that Islamists are the only reliable, powerful force in Egypt and that they are backed by the “majority” of Egyptians.

Eighty years of a mushrooming underground within Egyptian society has resulted in deep mistrust of mainstream establishments. Islamists view members of these establishments and other non-Islamist forces with deep suspicion and consider them elitist, anti-religious snobs. The strict, rules that govern the Brotherhood’s internal structure were partly introduced to protect the group from outside “corruption.”

This combination plus simmering resentment and years of grievance have finally exploded in the recent crisis in Egypt, and it partly explains the abrupt, odd way that Morsy has chosen to deal with it.

The situation as I see it is that Morsi wants to consolidate his power in Egypt and set up his part of the world-wide caliphate the Muslim Brotherhood is planning to build. This will be easier for him to do if he can convince the West that he is actually the good guy and the people protesting him are the bad guys. He will do his best to put down this rebellion against his power grab, but he doesn’t want the West to think that he is creating the caliphate he is creating. Morsi is an expert at propaganda. It is no surprise that he will use traditional and new media for his purposes.

All of us need to be very careful in deciding exactly who and what what we believe.

Sometimes There Are No Good Guys In The Fight

On Sunday The New York Times posted an article about the people attempting to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad of Syria and the arms being supplied to them.

The article reports:

The United States is not sending arms directly to the Syrian opposition. Instead, it is providing intelligence and other support for shipments of secondhand light weapons like rifles and grenades into Syria, mainly orchestrated from Saudi Arabia and Qatar. The reports indicate that the shipments organized from Qatar, in particular, are largely going to hard-line Islamists.

The concern is that the rebels in Syria are another part of the “Arab Spring.” So far the Arab Spring has not brought freedom, but sharia law.

The article further states:

American officials have been trying to understand why hard-line Islamists have received the lion’s share of the arms shipped to the Syrian opposition through the shadowy pipeline with roots in Qatar, and, to a lesser degree, Saudi Arabia. The officials, voicing frustration, say there is no central clearinghouse for the shipments, and no effective way of vetting the groups that ultimately receive them.

Evidently some of the rebels are planning ahead. The article reports:

Late last month in the Turkish border town of Antakya, at least two men who had recently been in Syria said they had seen Islamist rebels buying weapons in large quantities and then burying them in caches, to be used after the collapse of the Assad government. But it was impossible to verify these accounts, and other rebels derided the reports as wildly implausible.

It seems to me that when we are not sure who the good guys are in the fight, we need to stay out of it. My heart goes out to the innocent civilians in Syria, but it seems to me that supplying arms to anyone will simply result in more people being killed. Assad is a horrible dictator, but there are no guarantees that a government that replaces him will be any better.

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Someone Is Finally Telling The Truth

One of the casualties of political correctness is honesty. We simply do not call things what they are for fear of causing offense or facing the consequences of what actually is.

Politico posted an article yesterday by Newt Gingrich commenting on recent events in the Middle East.

The article quotes Mr. Gingrich:

The president asserted we have to oppose “the kind of senseless violence that took the lives of these public servants.”

Clinton reinforced his analysis when she said, “We condemn in the strongest terms this senseless act of violence.”

This concept of “senseless violence” is at the heart of the left’s refusal to confront the reality of radical Islamists.

These are not acts of senseless violence.

These are acts of war.

We can’t successfully deal with a situation until we realize what it is. One of the things pointed out in the article is the question of how this video clip reached Egypt and Libya. Does anyone actually believe that the film was responsible for these attacks? Have we forgotten the emphasis terrorists put on dates and the fact that the attacks occurred on September 11?

The article concludes:

It is no accident that the embassy in Cairo issued a groveling statement, apologizing to the haters for having inconvenienced them with American freedom of speech.

The embassy was simply following Clinton’s lead, set months earlier in her meetings with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

The OIC has a long- term campaign to manipulate the U.S. government into defining any criticism or improper reference to Islam as unacceptable.

No one should be confused by this. As Andy McCarthy wrote yesterday, the Islamist definition of heresy would destroy American free speech.

The Obama administration is waging war on the Catholic Church while appeasing the most extreme elements of Islam.

This is the bizarre situation we now find ourselves in.

We need to remember–When America has a weak President, the world is a more dangerous place.

 

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The Muslim Brotherhood Makes A Move In Egypt

Reuters is reporting today that Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi, a leading figure in the Muslim Brotherhood, has ordered Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi to retire.

The article reports:

President Mohamed Mursi also cancelled a constitutional declaration that limited presidential powers and which the ruling army council issued in June, as voting in the election that brought Mursi to power drew to a close.

There had previously been much debate over the fate of 76-year-old Tantawi, who had ruled Egypt as head of the military council after Mubarak was toppled last year, but the timing of the announcement to replace him was a surprise.

The move sidelines Tantawi, whose presence had cast a shadow over Mursi’s rule, and appeared to whittle away at the remaining powers of the military, from whose ranks every president for 60 years had been drawn until Mursi’s election.

This move essentially transfers power away from the military and strengthens the power of the President and the Parliament. The Parliament that was elected in Egypt was largely fundamentalist Islamists who support Sharia Law. Taking control of the military breaks down the last barrier to Sharia Law and to Egypt becoming what Iran became after the 1979 revolution there. The next step will be the official breaking of the treaty with Israel (which will only happen when Egypt feels that it has gotten all the U. S. foreign aid money it is going to get).

Unfortunately, the outreach initiative by the Obama Administration to the Arabs in the Middle East has resulted in a loss of  freedom for the people of the Middle East, heightened tensions in the area as the countries align against Israel, and the probable loss of Iraq and Afghanistan to extreme Islamists.

I am not sure a new administration in Washington can solve these problems, but I can pretty much guarantee that four more years of President Obama will make them worse.

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An Interesting Development In Egypt

Fox News is reporting today that the Islamist parliament in Egypt has been dissolved by Judges appointed by Hosni Mubarak. The Judges have ruled that Mubarak’s former prime minister can run in the runoff election this weekend. A victory by the former prime minister would allow the military and the remnants of the old regime to stay in power.

The article reports:

The rulings effectively erase the tenuous progress from the past year’s troubled transition, leaving Egypt with no parliament and concentrating rule even more firmly in the hands of the military generals who took power after Mubarak’s ouster. The fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood, which stands to lose the most from the rulings, called the moves a coup and vowed to rally the street against the ruling military and former prime minister Ahmed Shafiq, the presidential candidate seen by critics as a favorite of the generals and a symbol of Mubarak’s autocratic rule.

In the past (as in after the assassination of Anwar Sadat) when an Egyptian leader was removed from power, the top person in the military simply took over. There was some belief that when Hosni Mubarak was removed from power, the country would transition to a democracy. That does not seem to be happening. The elections that gave the Muslim Brotherhood a majority were legal, but the danger is that the history of the Muslim Brotherhood is one election to declare democracy and no elections after that. If the Muslim Brotherhood gains full control of Egypt, there will be no freedom for the Egyptians. Sharia Law (the goal of the Muslim Brotherhood) is incompatible with freedom and democracy.

The article further reports:

The dissolution of parliament now raises the possibility the military council could appoint the panel, a step that would fuel accusations that it is hijacking the process.

The legal adviser of the Freedom and Justice Party, the Brotherhood’s political arm, said the court rulings were “political,” lamenting the outgoing legislature as the country’s “only legitimate and elected body.”

“They are hoping to hand it over to Ahmed Shafiq and make him the only legal authority in the absence of parliament. The people will not accept this and we will isolate the toppled regime,” Mukhtar el-Ashry said in a posting on the party’s website.

A moderate Islamist and a former presidential candidate, Abdel-Moneim Abolfotoh, said the rulings amounted to a “coup” and warned that the youth, pro-democracy groups that engineered the uprising that toppled Mubarak last year would protest the court’s rulings.

A military take-over of Egypt is unfortunate for those who wish to see freedom and democracy in Egypt; however, the election of the Muslim Brotherhood to the presidency and the majority of the parliament will also mean the end of freedom and democracy. There really is no good choice for the Egyptian people.

 
 

 

 
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The Failed Revolution In Egypt

In January of last year, over 50,000 protesters filled Tahrir Square in Egypt to protest the regime of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. They were demanding freedom and democracy. Unfortunately, it does not appear that that is what they got.

The U. K. Telegraph reported yesterday on what has happened in Egypt since the original protest.

The article reports:

The two presidential candidates who, as counting nears completion, seem to have got through to a second round of voting are the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood‘s front party, the FJP, and a former Air Force general who was prime minister when the “last dictator” Hosni Mubarak finally stepped down.

It really doesn’t seem like much of a choice, but the author of the article has a slightly different view. He states that this is democracy in action–the candidates got the votes and are therefore the choice of the people.

The article points out how the two candidates won:

The three losers appealed to people who like to argue about politics and ideas, and have “messages”. But they were essentially dilettantes. The Brotherhood and the ex-regime spoke directly to the concerns of ordinary Egyptians, and said what it could do for them.

The Brothers frighten the West with their Islamism. But their campaign talked about education for the poor, and defending traditional values. They came out strongly in favour of free market economics, and while it would be wrong to say Hayek won the election, in most of provincial Egypt, the imam, the teacher, the engineer and the local shop-keeper make more sense than semi-Marxist rhetoric coming out of Cairo; think of Britain and France in the 1950s, captivated by Angry Young Men and Sartre respectively, but voting Tory and Gaullist, and you get the idea.

Shafiq had one message: Mubarak was Mubarak, but security is security; two years ago you could walk the streets safely, and now you can’t. For communities traumatised by crime, that speaks loud.

This is a lesson that should be learned by American politicians–if you want to win, have a plan!

I don’t see any hope for a democracy in Egypt. If the Muslim Brotherhood wins this election, they will institute Sharia Law and that will be the end of freedom. I hope that I am wrong, but the lessons of history are, unfortunately, on my side.

 

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This Really Isn’t Very Surprising

The Arab Spring is not looking too good right now. It seems as if some of the countries in the Middle East have swapped one form of tyranny for another. It doesn’t seem as if freedom is part of the picture of the governments being formed.

Bloomberg.com reported yesterday:

Egypt’s Islamist-dominated parliament voted to include 50 of its lawmakers in a 100-member panel tasked with writing a new constitution, with the remainder coming from other institutions.

So half of the people writing the constitution will be Islamists and the rest may or may not be.

The article reports:

The makeup of the committee has been the focus of wrangling over the degree of influence Islamist groups will have shaping the constitution. The Muslim Brotherhood’s party alliance makes up the largest bloc in the recently elected parliament, followed by a Salafi alliance. Salafis are followers of an austere interpretation of Islam.

When we look at this, we need to remember the historic roots of the Muslim Brotherhood. Both the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafis support Sharia Law as the law of the land. Individual freedom is not part of Sharia Law. The Muslim Brotherhood was founded in 1928 by Hassan al-Banna. It was formed in reaction to the secular society that was being set up in Turkey by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk after the fall of the Ottoman Empire. The mission of the Muslim Brotherhood is a worldwide caliphate. The takeover of Egypt will be one more step in that direction.

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The Arab Spring Turns Into Winter

On Sunday the Jerusalem Post reported that Dr. Rashad Bayoumi, the deputy leader of the Muslim Brotherhood party in Egypt, has stated that Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood will not recognize Israel “under any circumstance.”  The statement was made to the Arabic daily al-Hayat in an interview published on Sunday.

In the recent elections the Muslim Brotherhood party and the Salafi al-Nour Party (ultra conservative Islamists) received about 65 percent of the vote.

When asked during the interview whether the new government of Egypt should recognize Israel, Dr. Bayoumi replied, “This is not an option, whatever the circumstances, we do not recognize Israel at all. It’s an occupying criminal enemy.”

The two Islamist parties (the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafi al-Nour Party) will be writing the new constitution for Egypt. This is not good news for Israel or for peace in the Middle East.

The other thing to watch here will be the role of Saudi Arabia as Islamists take over the Middle East. Although Saudi Arabia is an Islamist state, the Saudi princes have held on to their power and have so far avoided the revolutions that have occurred around them. It will be interesting to see how the fact that the Muslim Brotherhood has taken over the governments all around them impacts their nation.

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The March Toward Sharia Law Continues In Egypt

The Associated Press is reporting today that Islamists have received 70 percent of the seats determined so far in the second stage of the Egyptian elections. The Muslim Brotherhood won about 86 of the 180 seats in this round–about 47 percent. The Al-Nour Party (the Salafists) won about 20 percent. The seculalrists that led the rebellion against Hosni Mubarak won less than 10 percent of the seats.

The article reports on a part of the power struggle currently going on in Egypt:

The election is the first since Mubarak’s Feb. 11 ouster and is the freest in Egypt’s modern history. The 498-seat People’s Assembly, the parliament’s lower house, will be tasked, in theory, with forming a 100-member assembly to draft a new constitution.

But its actual role remains unclear. The military council that has ruled since Mubarak’s fall says the parliament will not be representative of all of Egypt, and should not have sole power over the drafting of the constitution. Last week, the military appointed a 30-member council to oversee the process.

The military has traditionally held a lot of power in Egypt. It looks as if they are not in a hurry to give up that power. The military in the past has been more secular than the two parties that won the majority of votes so far. It will be interesting to see how this eventually works out. Frankly, my money is on the Muslim Brotherhood–they have been planning to implement Sharia Law in Egypt for a long time, and I don’t see them giving up now.

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The Numbers In The Egyptian Election

The Egyptian Gazette reported today on the results of the recent elections in Egypt. The party of the Muslim Brotherhood (the Freedom and Justice Party) won 36.62 percent of the vote. The Salafist Al-Nur party (which advocates an Islamist government similar to Saudi Arabia) won 24.36 percent of the vote.

Both of these political parties have as their aim the establishment of an Islamist caliphate in the Middle East. Although the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) markets itself as moderate–it’s goals are not.

This election is the first step of a three-step process.

The article reports:

Voting on Monday and Tuesday was only the opening phase of an election for a new lower house of parliament that is taking place in three stages, but the returns reveal the main political trends now shaping Egypt.

Only one third of districts have voted. The rest of the country will go the polls in a further two stages later this month and in January.  
 
Voters were required to pass three votes: two for individual candidates and one for a party or coalition.
 
The military took over the government when Mubarak stepped down and are currently in control of the interim government. It is expected that there will be a power struggle between the current military government and the political parties that won victories in this election.
 
The article reports:
 
The first test will be over the formation of a new caretaker government, with the Brotherhood insisting on the right to form a cabinet.
 
The second struggle with be over a new constitution next year and the relative powers given to parliament, a new president to be elected by next June, and the army.
 
The military helped maintain Egypt as a secular country. If their power is diminished as the new government forms, there is a strong possibility that Egypt will become more like Saudi Arabia. There have been a significant number of attacks on Egypt’s Coptic Christians since the revolution in Egypt, and there will be less freedom of religion in Egypt as the Salafist Al-Nur party and the Freedom and Justice Party consolidate their power. This is not good news either for Israel (both parties are strongly anti-Israel) or for freedom of religion around the world.
 
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The Arab Spring Is Looking A Little Stormy

The Global Post reported today on the elections being held in Tunisia.

The article reports:

Despite deep divisions among the various political parties over Tunisia’s future — the most contentious being the debate between secularists and Islamists — the election itself was a source of both national and regional pride for many Tunisians today.

…“If Ennahda wins, I would like to see sharia [Islamic] law,” said Tawfiq bin Mohammed bin Abdullah, a 62-year-old Ennahda supporter.“There are many women in Tunisia who do not know true Islam. Ennahda will not impose, but it will explain what it is in the Koran. And hopefully they will come to the true Islam.”

Others are drawn to Ennahda not only for its religious message, but for its longer history as a serious opposition group.

“Ennahda, they want to preserve our civil rights,”said 22-year-old Khalil Elalmi, a medical student who was arrested and beaten during the revolution.“They want to preserve our rights and take into consideration the law of Islam.”

“Their objective is to help people get a better life.”

Sharia Law and democracy are not compatible. We need to remember that. One of the most amazing aspects of Brigitte Gabriel’s story (see rightwinggranny.com) was her account of what happened to Lebanon (formerly the garden spot of the Middle East):

Lebanon was 67 percent Christian and was a truly multi-cultural country—there was freedom of religion for all religions. Gradually Muslims immigrated to Lebanon and became the majority of the country. The Muslims formed the Arab Lebanese Army, attacked Christians in a church, and started a civil war. The Muslims killed Christians, burned churches, and committed other atrocities. None of the western democracies came to the aid of Lebanon.

Unfortunately, unless the people involved in the Arab Spring protests wake up quickly, they will see their freedom disappear as quickly as they thought they had obtained it. When the Muslim Brotherhood takes over a country, there is no freedom of religion and no freedom for women.

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