July 30, 2007

“He will bless those who bless the Jews and curse those who curse the Jews”

By Olive Schreiner, South African novelist and social activist

Indeed it is difficult for all other nations of the world to live in the presence of the Jews. It is irritating and most uncomfortable. The Jews embarrass the world as they have done things which are beyond the imaginable.

They have become moral strangers since the day their forefather, Abraham,
introduced the world to high ethical standards and to the fear of Heaven.

They brought the world the Ten Commandments, which many nations prefer to defy.

They violated the rules of history by staying alive, totally at odds with common sense and historical evidence.

They outlived all their former enemies, including vast empires such as the Romans and the Greeks.

They angered the world with their return to their homeland after 2000 years of exile and after the murder of six million of their brothers and sisters.

They aggravated mankind by building, in the wink of an eye, a democratic State which others were not able to create in even hundreds of years. They built living monuments such as the duty to be holy and the privilege to serve one's fellow men.

They had their hands in every human progressive endeavor, whether in science, medicine, psychology or any other discipline, while totally out of proportion to their actual numbers.

They gave the world the Bible and even their "savior."

Jews taught the world not to accept the world as it is, but to transform it, yet only a few nations wanted to listen.

Moreover, the Jews introduced the world to one God, yet only a minority wanted to draw the moral consequences.

So, the nations of the world realize that they would have been lost without the
Jews. And while their subconscious tries to remind them of how much of Western civilization is framed n terms of concepts first articulated by the Jews, they do anything to suppress it.

They deny that Jews remind them of a higher purpose of life and the need to be honorable, and do anything to escape its consequences. It is simply too much to handle for them, too embarrassing to admit, and above all, too difficult to live by.

So, the nations of the world decided once again to go out of 'their' way in order to find a stick to hit the Jews. The goal: to prove that Jews are as immoral and guilty of massacre and genocide as some of they themselves are.

All this in order to hide and justify their own failure to even protest when six million Jews were brought to the slaughterhouses of Auschwitz and Dachau; so as to wipe out the moral conscience of which the Jews remind them, and they found a stick.

Nothing could be more gratifying for them than to find the Jews in a struggle with another people (who are completely terrorized by their own leaders) against whom the Jews, against their best wishes, have to defend themselves in order to survive.

With great satisfaction, the world allows and initiates the rewriting of history to fuel the rage of yet another people against the Jews. This in spite of the fact that the nations understand very well that peace between the parties could have come a long time ago, if only the Jews would have had a fair chance. Instead, they happily jumped on the wagon of hate to justify their jealousy of the Jews and their incompetence to deal with their own moral issues.

When Jews look at the bizarre play taking place in The Hague, they can only smile as this artificial game once more proves how the world paradoxically admits the Jews uniqueness. It is in their need to undermine the Jews that they actually raise them.

The study of history of Europe during the past centuries teaches us one uniform lesson: That the nations which received and in any way dealt fairly and mercifully with the Jew have prospered; and that the nations that have tortured and oppressed them have written out their own curse."

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 02:07 AM | Comments (0)

July 27, 2007

The MI Daily -“Good job, Brownie”; J.S. Kaufman - “I don’t think so”

“Good Job, Brownie” (PM Gordon Brown)

By Mike Eber, LSA senior and a member of the MI Daily's editorial board.

July 16, 2007

I think British Prime Minister Gordon Brown reads The Michigan Daily. Or, maybe he just has the potential to be one of the most inspiring leaders since Winston Churchill. Earlier this summer, I argued for the removal of the term "Islamic fundamentalist" on the grounds that it too improperly associates political terrorism with a religion (War of words, 05/29/2007). Similarly, Brown took the bold step of eliminating his administration's official use of the adjective "Muslim" while publicly discussing terrorism.

Before the fellas at Webster get into a brawl with the blokes at Oxford, consider the motivations for a person to perpetrate such an un-American act as Brown has done. According to Brown's spokesman, "There is clearly a need to strike a consensual tone in relation to all communities across the UK."
By casting aside religious signifiers like "Muslim," Brown is trying to regulate divisive speech and foster a greater spirit of British national pride in all people. Reversing the old "sticks and stones" adage, Brown appeals to various sympathies of oppressed people without pumping in billions in tax revenue to do so. A little sensitivity goes a long way.

An idea like Brown's, a change in semantics based on not assigning a religion to terrorism, created uproar amongst online readers of the Daily back in May. Few readers actually responded in ways ultimately approving of violence against Muslims. Here in America it seems that the general public would rather wade in this red-versus-blue manner, decide who is "American" and whose code of religious-based morality we want. And, according to some, singling out divisive speech is deemed political whitewash.

Ironically, this rift in the American viewpoint mirrors our own misunderstanding of Middle Eastern politics. As we consider terror in that part of the world as part of the same movement, we fail to recognize the difference between Al Qaeda and Hamas. Whereas one is bent on global jihad, the latter is concerned with local conflicts and vehemently opposes Al Qaeda involvement in the West Bank and Gaza. If we cannot understand this complexity, how can we call terrorism a Muslim problem? Not understanding the particularities of so-called "Muslim" terrorism handicaps us in ways Brown is starting to realize.

I Don’t Think So

By Jerome S. Kaufman

The Michigan Daily, July 24, 2007

It is truly unfortunate that British Prime Minister Gordon Brown finds it too uncomfortable to face the facts of Muslim or Islamic Fundamentalism and its incontrovertible links to world-wide terrorism. He, instead, has chosen to adopt a language of obfuscation lulling to sleep his own nation. He refuses to acknowledge as our mutual enemy, Islamo-fascism – a world-wide ideology that daily declares its ultimate centuries-old goal to destroy Western thought and to forcibly replace our way of life with Shar'ia law. How many times must it be said that it is true that all Muslims are not terrorists but virtually all terrorists happen to be Muslims?

It is only necessary to read, even the liberal press and watch overwhelmingly liberal television to understand that the far greatest number of bloody conflicts going on all over the world, are wars based upon the notion of Islamic triumphalism and irredentism. This "religion of peace" is waging bloody conflicts of the sword in the Philippines, Indonesia, Kashmir, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Chechnya, Iraq, Gaza, Judea and Samaria, Macedonia, Algeria, the Sudan, Sub-Saharan Africa, etc. --all in the name of a religious concept far more coherent than the somnolent Western nations, as painfully exemplified by Gordon Brown, are willing to comprehend or acknowledge.
Right before Brown's own eyes, London has become what Melanie Phillip's has named Londistan in her brilliant book of the same name.

Daniel Johnson in Commentary, November 2006 reports that, Abu Izzadeen, a Jamaican convert to Islam living in London, advised a British audience in public forum that, "Britain does not belong to the English or the Queen or to the British government, but to Allah. He has put us on earth to implement shari'a law." Indeed, Abu Izzadeen's attempt to claim the East End of London as an exclusively "Muslim area" may not be mere fantasy. In 2012, the East End will host the Olympics. Waiting to be built, in a spot adjacent to the Olympic village, is the largest place of worship in Europe; the London Markaz, part of a vast complex projected to cost £100 million, most of it coming from Saudi Arabia. The organizational backer for this project is Tablighi Jamaat, a Muslim missionary group that the FBI has labeled a recruiting ground for al Qaeda.

London, with over 1,000 mosques, is already Europe's unofficial Muslim capital. Its status will be enhanced immeasurably by the Markaz, whose size - it is projected to hold 70,000 worshippers, dwarfing St. Paul's Cathedral and Westminster Abbey! To contemplate the building of so potent a symbol of Islamic triumphalism over Europe's Christian heritage is all but incredible.

At an exponentially less important level, it is unfortunate for the readers of the Michigan Daily that one of the Daily editors has embraced PM Brown's lethal exercise in political correctness as a panacea for the world's mortal conflict with militant Islam. Hopefully future articles in the Daily will not reflect this naïve point of view.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 03:48 AM | Comments (0)

July 24, 2007

It’s Official: Feiglin vs. Netanyahu on August 14, 2007

(What – An Israeli who wants a Strong Jewish State and no more land giveaways!)

On July 10th, the Likud Central Committee set the date for the Likud primary for August 14th. This election will be contested solely by Moshe Feiglin and Benjamin Netanyahu. Moshe Feiglin, Manhigut Yehudit's Candidate for Prime Minister stated, "I welcome the primary as a golden opportunity to achieve the leadership position in the Likud. The State of Israel cannot continue to exist without belief based leadership."

Manhigut Yehudit of the The Jewish Leadership Movement - offers an alternative government with a vision that will uphold Jewish values. Moshe Feiglin's platform includes: reversing the Oslo Accords and the Road Map (including claiming sovereignty over all the Land of Israel that is in our hands), strengthening the Jewish family, and providing a strong Jewish education to all students.

Mr. Feiglin further adds that he is “looking for a unique state -- a vital, flourishing Jewish State. I want to settle Jews on every inch of land that falls into our hands. I want to establish an exemplary Jewish society that will be a moral model for the entire world -- a true ‘light unto the nations.’ ...I do not want peace. I want to defeat our enemies, drive them from our Land and fulfill our Jewish destiny. Peace will surely follow.”

The Manhigut Yehudit website is www.jewishisrael.org

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 04:40 PM | Comments (0)

July 21, 2007

The Vaunted Arab Lobby Group, CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations)

June 20, 2007

I've talked before about the Council on American-Islamic Relations -- most recently because it filed that lawsuit against Americans who reported suspicious behavior by Muslims on a U.S. Airways flight. Better known just as CAIR, the lobbying group has come under a lot of scrutiny lately for its connections to terror-supporting groups. This time, though, The Washington Times has uncovered some very good news about the group.

For years, CAIR has claimed to represent millions of American Muslims. In fact, they claim to represent more Muslim in American than ... there are in America. This has alarmed Americans in general as the group often seems to be more aligned with our enemies than us -- which isn't surprising as it spun off from a group funded by Hamas. As you know, Hamas has been waging a terrorist war against Israel and calls for its total destruction. It also promises to see America destroyed. Nowadays, Hamas is busy murdering its Palestinian political rivals.

Even with this history, and CAIR's conspicuous failure to condemn Hamas by name, it has been treated as if represents Muslim Americans by our own government. The good news is that the financial support CAIR claims to have among American Muslims is a myth. We know this because The Washington Times got hold of the group's IRS tax records.

CAIR's dues-paying membership has shrunk 90 percent since 9/11 -- from 29,000 in 2000 to only 1,700 last year. CAIR's annual income from dues plunged from $733,000 to $59,000. Clearly, America's Muslims are not supporting this group -- and I'm happy to hear about it.
Of course, every silver lining seems to have a cloud; and this cloud is that CAIR's spending is running about $3 million a year. They’ve opened 25 new chapters in major cities across the country even as their dues shrank to a pittance. The question is; who’s funding CAIR? CAIR's not saying.

The New York Times earlier this year reported that the backing is from "wealthy Persian Gulf governments" including the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
Obviously, we have a bigger problem here than the one with CAIR.

Fred Dalton Thompson
Podcast Player

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 09:45 PM | Comments (0)

July 18, 2007

Mr. President, Don’t let the facts get between you and James Baker III

The Islamic/Arab World in a Nutshell

The Palestinian Mirage

By Steve K. Walz

The Jewish Press, July 22, 2007

No less than four civil wars are raging in the Arab/Islamic world— Gaza, Lebanon, Iraq and Afghanistan. In Gaza and Lebanon, Palestinians are wantonly murdering each other in cold blood, without even a murmur of protest from the Arab League, British “academics,” UN Security Council, etc. etc. The events in Gaza and Lebanon are of the larger Sunni-Shi’ite conflict that is raging across the entire Islamic world, with events being orchestrated by an unholy alliance of lran (Shi’ite), Al Qaeda (Sunni) and Syria (Alawite).

In other words, there is a tripartite alliance of thugs who are bending religion to suit their own personal agendas, which includes killing Jews and destroying the Christian West. The Arab League is a toothless organization that is impotent; it cannot and will not create an Arab Rapid Deployment Force that could put an end to the problems in Gaza, Lebanon and even Iraq within months.

Secular Egypt and religious Saudi Arabia -the two most powerful Arab League members — despise each other, even though they have a common interest in putting a stop to radical Sunni (Al Qaeda’s Wahhabism) and Shi’ite (Hamas, Hizbullah and Iran) rebellions that threaten their own dictatorial regimes.

United States policy in this part of the world has failed repeatedly because Egyptian and Saudi despots continue to thumb their noses at democracy and are only interested in self-preservation. Under the guise of letting the Palestinians determine their own fate, the Egyptians, Saudis and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon allowed the Americans to assist in the 2006 Palestinian elections. The Egyptians, who ruled Gaza with an iron fist prior to 1967 and turned down Israel’s offer to return it to them, knew who and what the Palestinian people really are. It is alleged that Sharon warned Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice prior to Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza in 2005 that the Palestinians were a “vicious and treacherous” people.

Hamas and its Islamic allies took advantage of Western-style democracy to create the third semi-autonomous terrorist entity in the Middle East. Hizbullah did the same in Lebanon as has the current Iraqi government — which contains both Sunni and Shia terrorist organizations.

What America and the rest of the Western world have failed to learn is that the Iranian revolution (radical Shia) and radical Saudi-Sunni-Wahhabism spawned Islamic radicals Khomeini and bin Laden. Though they were on opposite ends of the Islamic spectrum, their magnetism and endless streams of money allowed them to create the terror-filled world we live in today.

Europe just doesn’t get it. England’s Tony Blair and France’s Nicolas Sarkozy understand the horrifying realities of IsloFascism but are harnessed with populations that fear the growth of radical Islam within their midst but are in appeasement mode. Thus, America finds itself being isolated for the following reasons:
1) Successive administrations have failed to understand that in the Middle East, the “rules of war” do not apply, because there are no rules.
2) Successive administrations have failed to understand that Western democracy cannot be forced down the throats of ruthless dictators or religious fanatics. It only creates a boomerang effect.
3) Successive administrations have pressured Israeli leaders into making suicidal concessions that have only resulted in more death and destruction. Supplying Fatah terrorists with money and weapons proved useless in Gaza, and will also prove to be useless in the West Bank.
Let’s face the facts. Gazans are not Palestinians. They have always been considered the “rabble” of the Arab world. Even Hamas is having a hard time reigning in the clans and warlords who govern the streets. The West Bank Palestinian should be offered a choice, semi-autonomy under a combined Israeli-PA administration or Jordanian autonomy.
A Palestinian state at this stage of the game shouldn’t even be a part of the lexicon between President Bush and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert this week in Washington. Those days are over.

Let Hamas stew in their own juices in Gaza Israel should no longer be under any obligation to supply electricity or water to a terrorist entity in Gaza. What about the Gazan residents? Since they voted Hamas into power, why should Israel be left to take care of their needs, when the Arab world itself won’t even lift a hand to help their own brethren?

Yasir Arafat always threatened Israel even after the Oslo Accords. He told anyone who would listen, “If they (the Jews) won’t listen or give in to my demands, let them drink salty seawater.”

Recently, Hamas smashed Arafat’s former office in Gaza and stole his Nobel Peace Prize in the process. Perhaps the time has come for Gazans to drink Arafat’s salty seawater.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 09:20 PM | Comments (0)

July 16, 2007

Beware our selection of heroes – Sir Elton John

(How about a change of pace? Sorry, for this lapse from weighty discussions, but this just tickled me.)

The Weekly Standard, July 16, 2007

There are many guilty pleasures in the life of publishing THE SCRAPBOOK of the Weekly Standard and, not the least of these is celebrity tantrums. This is not because such spectacles prove that celebrities are just like us, but because they prove that celebrities—not all, of course, but many—are not like us in the least, and demonstrate this fact of life on a regular basis.

Case in point: The recent “Concert for Diana” at London’s Wembley Stadium, attended by umpteen thousand people, broadcast live to untold millions across the globe, and featuring the late princess’s two sons, William and Harry, and a musical performance by (among others) Sir Elton John.

Connoisseurs of kitsch (Sentimentality or vulgar, often pretentious bad taste, especially in the arts) will recall that at Diana’s Westminster Abbey funeral, ten years ago this summer, Sir Elton was chosen to play and sing an adaptation of “Candle in the Wind,” his musical tribute to royalty of another sort, Marilyn Monroe. So, it was right and proper that the organizers of the Concert for Diana should invite Sir Elton to repeat his performance at its grand finale last week.

But, alas! The SCRAPBOOK regrets to report that, after the concert, when Sir Elton and his entourage climbed into his limousine for the grueling 200 yard trek to his dressing room and a backstage reception, the princes William and Harry were expected momentarily, security was tightened, and a policeman stopped the limo and advised its occupants to walk to the party.

At this point, according to the London Evening Standard, Sir Elton erupted into one of the “rages for which he is renowned,” and addressed the policeman in the following words: Get out of my ****ing way. ... Don’t you know who I am? I’ve been working all ****ing day and I need to get to my ****ing dressing room!

There was a brief standoff, more words were exchanged, and Sir Elton instructed his chauffeur to drive around the policeman, who was obliged to threaten Sir Elton with arrest. At last, the great man emerged from his limo and walked the remaining 50 yards to his dressing room (in the words of the Evening Standard) “stomping down the road" and shouting at people to ‘get out of my way.”

In Sir Elton’s defense, as one of his entourage explained, it had been a long day “and sound difficulties meant his finale was delayed and ‘Crocodile Rock’ had to be cut off the end, which he wasn’t happy about.” So, presumably, may Sir Elton be forgiven his contemptuous treatment of a wage-earning bobby, his indifference to the safety of Princess Diana’s surviving sons, and his elephant-sized sense of entitlement.

No word on whether his civil partner, Lady John (the former David Furnish), was also in the limousine.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 06:49 AM | Comments (0)

July 13, 2007

An isolated sliver of daylight in the Arab world

"Let us accept the truth of our own defeats"

By Khairi Abaza, Senior Fellow at Center for Liberty in the Middle East

THE DAILY STAR (Lebanon) 4 July '07

”Victories in the Arab world must reflect reality not derive from hollow slogans."

As the current situation in Palestine worsens, let Arabs not forget their past. Events that are portrayed as victories by Arab politicians are not always victories for the Arab people. Last month, the Arab world remembered one of its greatest defeats of the 20th century: the June 1967 war, which marked the end of the hope to wipe out Israel and the loss of East Jerusalem, the West Bank, Gaza, the Sinai, and the Golan Heights. Despite the memory of those losses, Arab media, from Al-Jazeera to Dubai TV, still tried to find an honorable excuse for the Egyptian president in 1967, Gamal Abdel-Nasser.

This same distorted logic has been applied to movements such as Hizbullah and Hamas, whose defeats are often transformed into victories. No independent commission has ever assessed any of Abdel-Nasser's, Hamas', or Hizbullah's declarations of victory. The Arab people must dig for the truth in the statements and behavior of these leaders or groups. We have allowed politics in the Arab world to be defined by slogans, not results. Our judgment of leaders can only be truly determined by what they do not just what they say.

Arabs will not progress before they face the truth about their own history. In memorializing the 1967 defeat, Arab media organized numerous talk shows, documentaries, and interviews. But none clearly defined who was responsible for the Arab loss. Instead, the media tried to remind us how Abdel-Nasser gave Arabs a voice and pride. They failed to remind us that because of his bluff and provocation, in June 1967 Israel was able to win a devastating war.

They failed to remind us how Abdel-Nasser encouraged King Hussein of Jordan to take part in the war only hours after he knew that Egypt had been defeated,
providing Israel with a reason to occupy East Jerusalem and the West Bank. And they never mentioned that in 1970 Abdel-Nasser was considering accepting
the Rogers Plan for a peace settlement with Israel, with terms less favorable than the Camp David agreement later signed by his successor, Anwar Sadat.

Instead, Arab media tended to stress that it was Abdel-Nasser who had planned the October 1973 war, which took place three years after his death, removing all credit from Sadat, who had truly led the battle. Some claim that while the June 1967 war was a military loss, the spirit of armed resistance endured. They believe that resistance is still the strategic choice of Arabs. We have seen the results of the strategic choice of violent resistance by Hamas: an ugly Israeli barrier depriving Palestinians of ever more land that has made their lives even grimmer.

The slogans of resistance may incite support, but the consequences of these very slogans cannot be accepted by the Arab public. No one in the Arab world
today would accept that Hamas' actions were a large part responsible for the
Israeli barrier. There has not been and nor will there be independent assessment of Hamas' strategy. Slogans continue to trump the actual results of actions.

The same strategic manipulation of public opinion can be seen in Hizbullah's
"victory" against Israel in summer 2006. But what was this victory? A victory that left around 1,200 Lebanese dead, led to billions of dollars in damages and losses in tourism income, and the entry of United Nations troops in Southern Lebanon? With such a balance sheet, how could Hizbullah and its Arab supporters mislead the Arab public and claim victory? Was any inquiry made? Where is the independent commission that studied Hizbullah's actions? Yes, the party's secretary general, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, was left standing, just as Abdel-Nasser was. But is that enough when their nations and people were left battered?

How can Arabs improve their lot if they do not face up to their truths? Why is it that Arabs have such a propensity to live amid lies? Why is it that so-called "free" or "independent" Arab media are apologists for those who mislead the Arab public? When will Arabs have independent commissions to look into their mistakes and evaluate them transparently? Don't expect any of the authoritarian Arab states or their client organizations to produce such commissions. Independent intellectuals and experts in the Arab world should work to create these uncontrolled commissions as a first constructive step in any broad Arab action to improve transparency and accountability. We deserve to understand our history and to learn about the realistic options for our future. Victories in the Arab world must reflect reality not derive from hollow slogans.

Published by IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 03:17 PM | Comments (0)

July 11, 2007

Repeating drivel - A man of “peace and moderation”

Stop appeasing Abu Mazen

Jerusalem Post Online

By Isi Leibler

July 4, 2007

As events unfold in the wake of the Hamas Gaza takeover, there is a sense of deja vu. Despite the bloody consequences of our largely self-inflicted policies, we seem not to have learned any lessons from the bitter past. Our leaders mindlessly repeat drivel about Mahmoud Abbas being a man of peace and moderation. Yet, Abbas, who speaks with a forked tongue, heads a corrupt terrorist organization which is on the edge of unraveling. Does our government believe that the Aksa Martyrs Brigades have become peaceful? That the PA-administered schools have ceased brainwashing children to become martyrs? That Abbas no longer sanctifies suicide bombers and ceases to pay pensions to their families?

President George W. Bush may be obliged to refer to Abbas as a "peace partner," but must the prime minister of Israel be party to such a charade? More importantly, without receiving even a hint of assurance for the future, we have resumed paying the PA taxes and funds denied since the Hamas takeover. We are being urged to remove checkpoints to provide greater Palestinian freedom of movement inside the West Bank, despite IDF protestations that this will endanger Israelis.

And, if that were not enough, we are now contemplating providing Abbas with additional weapons, including armored cars, despite knowing that arms previously provided to the Palestinians were ultimately employed to murder Israelis. Indeed, only a few months ago, Abbas was appealing to Hamas to stop directing their weapons against fellow Palestinians and unite with Fatah against the Israelis. TO TOP this insanity, the PA announced that Abbas's Aksa Brigades - which murdered more Israelis than Hamas and remains adamantly committed to promoting terrorism - will be absorbed into the Palestinian police force, which is already, per capita, the largest in the world.

With the standing of Abbas at an all-time low, we are also being implored not to make even minimal demands on him lest we "further weaken" him by making him appear a "collaborator." And as a sign of good faith, we will release, gratis, 250 prisoners who could have been included in a future deal for the return of our kidnapped soldiers.

Yes, we should inform Abbas of our willingness to assist him. But not at the price of appeasement. There can be no further concessions without total reciprocity and genuine progress. Either Abbas commits himself to controlling terror or he should stew in his own juices. It is public knowledge that billions of dollars, constituting more aid per capita than any other country, has been donated to the Palestinians by the international community. Yet, large proportions of these handouts either disappeared into secret bank accounts or were diverted to finance terror. We must therefore insist that controls are introduced to ensure that such funds be employed exclusively for the welfare of Palestinians.

NOW IS also an opportune time to deal with Hamastan and overcome the sense of impotence currently pervading our government. We continually hear the mantra "There is no answer to Kassam attacks." The long-suffering citizens in Sderot, who have been transformed into refugees in their own country, are being told by our government to stoically adjust their lifestyles to a regime of daily "Russian-roulette" missile attacks, or evacuate.

This depressing state of affairs has its genesis in the abandonment of the principal axioms of Israeli defense strategy. They include the obligation of the IDF to protect its civilians, even at the price of painful casualties; confronting the enemy on his own territory; and never endangering Israeli civilian lives or compromising our security in order to placate international public opinion.

Alas, in addition to living in dreamland, our leadership has become obsessed with a desire to demonstrate to the world that we are "nice" people. But the "nicer" we are, the worse it gets. Consider the bitter harvest reaped since our unilateral disengagement from Gaza. Contrast our position now with the days when Israel was regarded as a tough nation unwilling to compromise with terrorists, and was respected and admired.

PARADOXICALLY, appeasement and unilateral concessions have simply paved the way for unprecedented waves of global anti-Israeli hatred and a rejuvenation of anti-Semitism
. Today there are opportunities to prove our mettle. Gaza is no longer "occupied" and is effectively a mini-state. We should therefore dismiss the insane idea of parachuting supplies into Gaza. Could we visualize the allies during the Second World War parachuting supplies to German civilians for "humanitarian reasons"? We should proclaim that we are sensitive to the humanitarian plight of Palestinians in Hamastan, but so long as Hamas continues orchestrating suicide bombings and launching rockets on Israeli civilians, we will not lift a finger to help them.

On the contrary, unless the terror is reined in, we will start applying the screws. We should inform the world that we intend to respond as would any other nation whose citizens are under missile attack. While seeking to minimize innocent civilian casualties, if terrorists oblige us to choose between the lives of our citizens and those of Palestinians we have a moral obligation to defend our own.

Israel's deterrent effect must be restored. It is immoral, even obscene, for our government to consciously delay tough responses against the missile assaults. Must we await a strike on a kindergarten, hospital or key infrastructure before acting? Only a miracle has averted a calamity to date.

In the wake of each individual missile attack, we should, in a calibrated manner, commence cutting off electricity, fuel and water to Gaza and seal border crossings. It is surely bizarre to continue supplying services to neighbors whose leaders orchestrate missile attacks and openly boast that their non-negotiable objective remains to kill "the descendants of apes and pigs."

WE ALSO need to regain control of the Philadelphi Corridor in order to contain the flow of lethal Iranian armaments pouring across the border. Targeted assassinations should be intensified against those orchestrating the attacks, including political leaders. This will possibly incur civilian casualties and we will no doubt be accused of responding "disproportionately." However, proportionality cannot be a prime consideration when endeavoring to create deterrence to offset ongoing unprovoked attacks on civilians, which are acts of war.

As to morality, even setting aside comparisons to the behavior of other nations, there comes a point in a confrontation where one says: Enough is enough. That point has long been passed. In war, a government must be motivated by one objective: to protect its civilians and minimize its military casualties. That is consistent with international law, common sense and morality and must override public relations.

The message to Gaza is neither brutal nor heartless. It is simple and constructive: Stop directing missiles, or bear the inevitable consequences. In fact, a tough Israeli response may encourage Palestinians to exert pressure on their leaders and, in the long run, even save Palestinian lives. We must also dispel the illusion that appeasing jihadists can ever bear fruit. In fact, retreats and unilateral withdrawals under fire have without exception emboldened jihadists into intensifying violence, and have served as a prescription for greater subsequent conflagrations.

The writer chairs the Diaspora-Israel relations committee of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and is a veteran international Jewish leader.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 08:16 PM | Comments (0)

July 08, 2007

Europeans welcome their own demise. Are we far behind?

Radical Muslims, without National Pride, Point to Europe’s Fall

By Jennifer Kabbany
Washington Times, June 28, 2007

Europe is on the verge of imploding: Radical Muslims are moving there in droves. Europeans have all but given up on their Christian roots. Moral absolutes are no longer relevant. National pride is a thing of the past. The European economy is sluggish, but welfare entitlements continue to expand. Indigenous birthrates are plummeting, and immigration is supplying the continent’s work force. Those were some of reasons for “The Collapse of Europe” - an academic conference held here two weeks ago. Participants said that unless Europe reverses course, it could be headed for a civil war, taken over by Islam’s Shariah law, or destroyed in some other way.

“Europe is facing tensions, which, unless seriously address, will tear it apart,” said Mark Steyn, author of “America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It" “Permanence is the illusion of every age,” he said. “‘Today, Europeans find the idea that their European Union cannot endure, inconceivable. … We’re not here celebrating the collapse of Europe. It’s real, and it could hurt America”

The conference was hosted by Pepperdine University and sponsored by the American Freedom Alliance, the Council for Democracy and Tolerance, and the university’s school of public policy. One of the main themes of the event was the Islamic stronghold Europe has become. Although the number of Muslims living in Europe was not available because of questionable census figures and poor data tracking in some countries, panelists estimated it at about 50 million.

“The European political class is not ready to confront the reality of this,” Mark Steyn said. “If they don’t get serious about correcting their course, their next generation of Europeans —the last generation — will end their place in a very dark world.” He said one of the biggest problems is Europe’s reliance on a largely Muslim immigrant work force. “Demography, in the end, underpins everything,” Mr. Steyn said. “The dependence of mass immigration is always a sign of weakness.”

Philippe Karsenty, a French journalist who founded Media-Ratings, which often monitors the failure of the French press to document the rise of militant Islam in France, said his countrymen are in denial about their state of affairs. “Europe is collapsing, but don’t even think of telling anyone in Paris; they’ll think you’re a fool,” he said. Mr. Karsenty described a France in which many of its citizens are obsessed with the Palestinian cause, calling some of Frenchmen “more extremist than Arabs.”

Europeans have lost their sense of nationalism, and thus care less about the large and growing number of devout Muslims who are slowly taking over their countries, the panelists said. “Islam is a political project and a supremacist movement:’ said Ayaan Hirsi Ali, an ex-Muslim, a former member of the Dutch parliament and author of “Infidel’ “In order to expand, you need an enemy”
Author and filmmaker Greg Davis, who produced the documentary “Islam: What the West Needs to Know,” compared Islam to the Cold War threat of communism.

Several panelists also noted the Shariah law of Islam, as far as most Muslims are concerned, trumps all civic laws. Some conference participants expressed concern that Islamic leaders intend to eventually take over Europe. They noted, for example, that Muhammad is the second most common name for newborns in Britain, and that Muslim leaders are demanding that large mosques be built in the middle of major cities.

“The greatest factor in this equation is what Europe wants to do:’ Mr. Davis said. “What will its people fight and die and kill for? If Europe will not fight for its Christian heritage, will it fight for its secular heritage?” Several panelists noted a so-called “white flight,” saying Europeans are moving to places such as Canada and Florida to avoid problems in their homeland. “The talented folks want to get out:’ Ms Steyn said, adding that these are the future bankers, politicians and business leaders.

Several Europeans at the conference weren’t ready to concede Europe is doomed, or that its residents have given up all hope. “We allow [Muslim immigrants] to go very far and that is the problem:’ said Henryk Broder, a German journalist and author of “Hurray — We Surrender,” which deals with European appeasement toward Islam. “What can we do? The number of people asking that question is rising.” His colleague, Dutch writer, filmmaker and producer Leon de Winter, agreed.
“There is a vast undercurrent among the general public of the feeling that we have had enough of it, we’re fed up:’ said Mr. de Winter, a critic of what he calls Europe’s appeasement of Muslim militancy.

Ms. Ali said Europe’s strength and hope lies in its freedom and civil society.She said Muslims who move to Europe might become aware of the opportunities afforded by a free and progressive society and turn their backs on what she describes as an oppressive religion. She and others already have, she said, but she is also the target of death threats. Ms. Ali is quick to point out her concerns about Islam in Europe noting that Islamic leaders are abusing Europe’s welfare state and “justify bigoted sermons as freedom of religion.”
Muslim leaders understand it is more effective to exploit a system from within than to attack it from the outside’ she said. “But it’s not so much what a relatively small minority do or don’t do; it’s the Europeans who allow it?’

Mr. de Winter also he said put the onus for change on Europeans, saying they must re-examine their priorities. Muslim immigration isn’t Europe’s biggest threat. “It’s a crisis of European civilization, of our identity", he said. "What is sacred in our lives? This is a crisis about values, ethics.” Mr. Davis said Europe needs to rediscover its core beliefs. “Europe has stopped believing in stuff because if you believe in stuff it’s dangerous,” he said. “If you believe in stuff, you might disagree with someone. … And America is not as far down the slope as Europe, but we’re getting there.

Phyllis Chesler, author and professor emeritus at City University of New York, said the embrace of secularism among Europeans is doing nothing to reverse the trend toward Islam. What’s more, she said, America’s role in educating people about the situation is falling short, that the radical professors who have taken over college campuses constantly side with Islam. Panelists agreed the crisis in Europe has gone largely unnoticed by Americans. Think of what Americans could do to help Europe get back on track rounded out the day’s discussion.

Hugh Hewitt, the host of a syndicated radio talk show, a law professor and a contributor to Townhall.com, said a variety of steps need to be taken. Among them, Americans should support non-profits working to alleviate problems in Europe, and Christians should think of the continent as a place where missionary work is needed, he said. “We are going to end up exactly where Europe is if we don’t defend what is sacred” he said.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 10:43 PM | Comments (0)

July 06, 2007

Let us give thanks to G-d for our Christian Friends

By Marcia Friedman
The Jewish Press, June 29, 2007

In 1981, when Israel bombed the Iraqi nuclear reactor and was condemned for it by nearly the entire world, Pastor John Hagee decided he had to stand up for Israel. And he did. “A Night to Honor Israel” was born with the purpose of giving the Christian community an opportunity to demonstrate its love and support of Israel and the Jewish people

“A Night to Honor Israel” became an annual event in San Antonio, Texas, where Pastor Hagee heads his church and ministry. In February 2006, Rev. Hagee, feeling the time had come to do more, called on Christian leaders across the county. More than 400, representing millions of Christians responded and joined him in launching Christians United for Israel (CUFI), a national grassroots movement in support of Israel.

Since then, numerous ‘A Night to Honor Israel” events have been held in cities across the country, attracting large and enthusiastic crowds. The events have raised a substantial amount of money for Israel and Jewish causes — the Israel Emergency Relief Fund, Migdal Ohr, and Nefesh B’Nefesh, to name a few. Recently, “A Night to Honor Israel” came here to Madison, Wisconsin. The program gripped the audience with speeches by pastors embracing Israel and the Jewish people and expressing the need for Christians to stand by them.

In the words of Rev. Joel Kitsemble, Wisconsin director of Christians United for Israel, “We must let the world know that the Jews have a right to exist and that we stand with them. There are millions of Christians who support and stand with them. We want them to know that they are not alone.” I asked Pastor Kitsemble to elaborate on why he and his colleagues feel the need to be so outspoken about their commitment to Israel. “God,” he said, “has a love for the Jewish people and a plan for the Jewish people — they were to be a people who eat differently, speak differently, and do things differently that would show the world the one true God.

And it is through their faith and the way they conduct themselves that they are to be a shining light unto the nations: History itself is testament. If any other nation had gone through what the Jewish people went through, they would not be in existence today. It shows the hand of God upon a people. As it says in Genesis 12:3: ‘I will bless those who bless you, and curse those who curse you.’”

He also emphasized that CUFI has no conversionary objectives. ‘Our motive is a pure and a righteous one. Over time, the Jewish people will see our true heart is behind it. .”David Brog, CUFI’s Jewish executive director, stressed that the group is not out to proselytize Jews. “These Christians work with us in supporting Israel and combating anti-Semitism,” he told me. “You know who has the quid pro quo? The Jews.

Being that the majority of Jews in this country are liberal, they say ‘unless they (CUFI) agree with our liberal social agenda, we’re not going to let them support Israel,’ and that is the wrong approach. What characterizes a coalition is not that the members agree on every issue, but that they agree on one issue — the issue on which they have come together in coalition. As Jews, we need to be a little more fair and a little more pragmatic in joining coalitions on the issue on which we agree.”

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, president of Toward Tradition, an organization that works with Bible-believing Christians on social and cultural issues, concurred with Brog. “I’m a big believer in the free market of ideas and I can only tell you what the late Pastor Jerry Farwell once told me, which is that he was not aware of any Torah-learned and observant Jew converting to Christianity. And, I agree with him. I have not either. So, frankly, speaking as a Jewish leader myself, I think it behooves us to be honest — intellectually honest — and step outside of denial and face the truth: If Jews abandon Judaism, it is not because of Christian energies, it is due to a failure on the part of the Jewish community in terms of Jewish education.”

In mid-July, CUFI will go to Washington with more than 4,000 advocates to speak with members of Congress about the imperative of supporting Israel. Their presence will confirm what the CUFI website fairly shouts:
“When the Jews of Europe were marched to the gas chambers in Hitler’s Holocaust ... the Christians of the world were strangely quiet. Never again! Not on our watch! The sleeping giant in America has awakened!”

Brog explained: “AIPAC has never succeeded in really going beyond the Jewish community. It’s crucial that the millions of Christians — we’re talking of at least 50 million evangelicals — speak out so that it will be understood that Israel is an American issue, a Christian issue, as well as a Jewish issue.”

“We are here to introduce a new era in America,” said Rev. Hagee. “An era of unity, mutual respect, and lasting peace — an era when Christian and Jew stand together hand in hand, shoulder to shoulder, and announce to a hostile world that we are united in brotherhood. Love is something you do, not just something you say.”

Rabbi Lapin put it in bottom-line terms: “I would urge all American Jews to look deep into their hearts and recognize friends where they appear.”

Marcia Friedman is a freelance writer and contributor to The Jewish Press. She can be reached at mlf@marciafriedman.com.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 03:49 PM | Comments (0)

July 04, 2007

A July 4th message of great concern to the United States of America

By Arlene Kushner
Policy Research

I write to share information that is critical to US interests in the Middle East: This is with regard to the State Department inspired project to bolster PA President Mahmoud Abbas, and to provide him with funds, arms and training via the Dayton plan, so that his security services might be strengthened. Quite simply, the attempts to strengthen Abbas are a disaster. He is neither moderate nor stable. He does not represent a hope for peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

Consider the following:

1) Abbas is closely allied with terrorist forces:
A brief review of Abbas's actions and policies from the time he became PA president makes this clear. He was the one who invited Hamas into the political process, and who began to incorporate terrorists into the PA security forces. In the Mecca agreement for a unity government, he moved to a more radical position to conform to Hamas demands.

2) Some of the other Fatah leaders perceived as the most "moderate" and promising the greatest hope for "reform" for Fatah are themselves greatly compromised. In particular is this the case with Muhammad Dahlan, who is, without a doubt, a terrorist. He ordered an attack on a school bus in 2000, was complicit in the Karine A weapons ship operation, and maintained a close relationship with Hamas's arch-terrorist Muhammad Dief.

Most recently, it has been discovered that Dahlan was in possession of the ID card of murdered Israeli border guard Nissim Toledano. The credit for this murder was claimed by Hamas. The fact that Dahlan had Toledano's ID card raises new questions about his - and Fatah's - complicity with Hamas.

3) It has never been Abbas's intention to take out Hamas.
There is considerable documentation for the fact that until the very end, when it was already too late, he did not give the order for his troops to fire on Hamas. Hamas didn't defeat Fatah, Fatah troops allowed themselves to be routed. These troops were greater in number, had more and better weapons, and were better trained. It was because of a failure of will that they lost.
Therefore, there is absolutely no reason to believe that when they confront Hamas in the West Bank - and rest assured they will! - They will do any better. Pumping money, training, and armaments into Fatah-controlled PA security forces in the West Bank will not yield greater success than doing this in Gaza did.

4) There is an unvarying precedent for arms and funds supplied to the PA, for fighting terrorism, to ultimately end up in terrorist hands. In spite of supposed guarantees in place to prevent this from happening, it is a good bet that it indeed will happen again.

5) According to the Middle East Newsline, a security oriented news service, Fatah (most notably Muhammad Dahlan) allied in Gaza with Al-Qaida forces, in the hopes that they would assist in defeating Hamas. MENL says this prompted Egypt, which has great apprehension of Al Qaida, to allow the smuggling of weapons into Gaza to strengthen Hamas further.

6) Abbas has a special relationship with Al Aksa Martyrs' Brigades, which is a terrorist arm of Fatah. There has been a pretense maintained that Al Aksa is now independent of Fatah and has nothing to do with it, but this is not the case. I have been in touch with security experts, some of whom prefer to speak off the record, who tell me that Al Aksa continues to answer to Abbas and that Abbas protects Al Aksa and puts its people on the PA security payroll. Now some most significant information has been exposed. Abbas pledged at the recent Sharm el-Sheikh conference to dismantle all militias not connected with his security forces.
He has been telling the international community that Al Aksa Brigades has agreed to surrender its guns. It is partly on this basis - and the vision of a new, improved Fatah - that the US and Israel are prepared to assist Abbas. However, WorldNetDaily has just released a piece that includes interviews with major Al Aksa Brigades leaders. They say that they have never been asked to surrender their arms, and that this message was meant for the international community. "Abbas," says one leader, "recognizes the Brigades as a legitimate source of resistance."

7) Hamas confiscated a great deal from Fatah in Gaza.
This has several important implications. First, US supplied weapons were taken from Fatah by Hamas, so that they were lost. Now there is talk about supplying Fatah again in the West Bank. This would likely be an exercise in futility and invite more of the same.
Second, Hamas has gained control of intelligence gathering equipment and intelligence files of Fatah, and will utilize these acquisitions to further weaken Fatah. Abbas has not totally disavowed future connections with Gaza, and careful attention to various diplomatic statements makes it obvious that there remains the possibility of renewed negotiations between Fatah and Hamas. If Hamas is in possession of Fatah intelligence, it can extort concessions from Fatah.Without a shadow of a doubt, it is Hamas's intention to gain control of the West Bank. The Shin Bet (Israeli secret service) has just revealed a Hamas plan to gain control of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

Mahmoud Abbas and his cronies in Fatah are not in a position to stand against Hamas. Relying on Fatah will simply generate greater problems and cause further destabilization in the region. Preventing destabilization of the region means permitting Israel to continue to take all necessary actions - including the maintenance of roadblocks against terrorist infrastructure in the West Bank. Israel has been successful because of a presence there, with strong intelligence, and the ability to act as necessary. Strengthening of this approach is critically important at present.

Were Condeleezza Rice to have her way, a Palestinian State would be established in the West Bank with Fatah at its helm. This would be nothing short of a calamity for US interests in the region. It would mean the establishment of a terrorist state that would threaten forces of moderation and provide a base for terrorist training, storage of weapons, recruitment and attacks; it would severely destabilize the region.

(Arlene Kushner is an American-Israeli journalist and author writing from Jerusalem on security issues, as well an analyst with the Center for Near East Policy Research, based in Boston and in Jerusalem)

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 01:58 PM | Comments (0)

July 02, 2007

Jonathan Pollard’s Attorneys Expose Entire Tragic Miscarriage of Justice

By Eliot Lauer and Jacques Semmelman - Legal Times - June 25, 2007

Richard Jones, the U.S. ambassador to Israel, issued a public apology on May 22 for stating that Jonathan Pollard, our pro bono client, had committed "treason," and that "the fact that he wasn't executed is the mercy that he will receive" from the U.S. government.

The ambassador's statements had caused an uproar. Pollard delivered classified information to Israel, an ally of the United States. He was never charged with treason, which entails aiding an enemy of the United States. And, Pollard's crime, espionage, was not a capital offense.

This incident raises the question of why he remains in prison after nearly 22 years. What harm did he actually cause the United States, and does it warrant continued incarceration? To this day, about 40 pages of the court docket upon which Pollard was sentenced remain under seal, at the direction of the U.S. government. The sealed portions contain the government's projections, circa 1987, of possible harm from Pollard's conduct that might arise after sentencing.

More than 20 years later, the government refuses to allow us, Pollard's security-cleared attorneys, access to these portions of the docket.
The likely explanation for this stonewalling is that the government's projections did not materialize. Importantly, this renders invalid the premise underlying Pollard's life sentence and the justification for keeping this man in custody.

On Nov. 21, 1985, Pollard was arrested on a charge of delivering classified information to Israel. He has been incarcerated since that day.
In 1986, pursuant to a written plea agreement, he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit espionage. Although he was never charged with intending to harm the United States, in 1987 he was sentenced to the maximum sentence, life in prison.

Before sentencing, then-Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger submitted a declaration to the court, specifying the claimed harm caused by Pollard. Portions were designated classified and placed under seal. Before sentencing, they were shown to Pollard and to his attorney. We, however, have never seen the classified portions of the Weinberger declaration.

The publicly available Victim Impact Statement filed by the government before sentencing describes the actual damage to the United States: "Mr. Pollard's unauthorized disclosures have threatened the U.S. relations with numerous Middle East Arab allies, many of whom question the extent to which Mr. Pollard's disclosures of classified information have skewed the balance of power in the Middle East.

Moreover, because Mr. Pollard provided the Israelis virtually any classified document requested by Mr. Pollard's coconspirators, the U.S. has been deprived of the quid pro quo routinely received during authorized and official intelligence exchanges with Israel, and Israel has received information classified at a level far in excess of that ever contemplated by the National Security Council."

Although this was the actual harm caused by Pollard, we know from the public record that the sealed portions of the Weinberger declaration contain projections of possible future harm that might occur from Pollard's conduct. Pollard's lawyer noted to the court that the Weinberger declaration did not allege that the United States "has lost the lives or utility of any agents, that it has been obligated to replace or relocate intelligence equipment, that it had to alter communication signals, or that it has lost other sources of information, or that our technology has been compromised. Indeed, the memorandum only discusses the possibility that sources may be compromised in the future" (emphasis in original). The government responded by urging the court to consider "the reasoned concerns of a U.S. Cabinet member as to the real potential for further injury resulting from defendant's crimes" (emphasis added).

In sum, the thrust of the Weinberger declaration was to project what might happen, and to urge the court to sentence Pollard as if those projections had already happened. The court was evidently persuaded, as it sentenced Pollard to life in prison.


There is real reason to believe that Weinberger's projections were overly aggressive. In a second declaration, Weinberger inappropriately described Pollard's crime as "treason." Four years later, the Justice Department admitted that it was "regrettable" that Weinberger had used the term "treason."

In 1992, addressing Pollard's habeas corpus petition, Judge Stephen Williams of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit went much further. He called the government's misuse of the word "treason," in conjunction with other government misconduct at sentencing, a "fundamental miscarriage of justice requiring relief" from the life sentence. Williams was outvoted, 2-1, largely on the basis of procedural impediments to relief, such as the heavy burden of proof on habeas review.

Pollard's only remaining avenue of relief is executive clemency. If Weinberger's projections have failed to materialize, we can present a compelling argument for clemency because the premise underlying Pollard's life sentence will have been invalidated.

In 2000, we took Pollard's case pro bono. We applied for, and were granted by the Justice Department, the requisite security clearances needed to see the sealed portions of the Weinberger declaration. But despite our security clearances, the Justice Department refused to consent to our viewing the sealed portions, even under strict conditions of confidentiality. The department claimed we had no "need to know."

We filed a motion, asking the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to allow us access. We explained that we were applying for executive clemency from then-President Bill Clinton and that we needed to be able to address authoritatively what harm Pollard had actually caused. The government argued that we had no need to know the contents of the court docket. It stated that the sealed docket materials were irrelevant, intimating that they had lain dormant and unread by anyone since the sentencing. The district court refused to grant us access.

In the face of the government's insinuation that the materials had not been accessed since the 1987 sentencing, Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) demanded that the Justice Department inform him whether any persons had been permitted access to the department's copies of the sealed materials since the 1987 sentencing, and if so, provide the details of the access. The Justice Department admitted that between 1993 and 2001, it had unilaterally allowed access to its copies of the sealed materials on at least 24 separate occasions. None of those instances of access were by anyone representing Pollard. It was apparent from the dates that access had been allowed precisely at times when initiatives were under way to obtain executive clemency for Pollard - clemency that the Justice Department has consistently opposed.
Since, by law, no one could see the materials without a "need to know," the Justice Department conveniently determined on at least 24 occasions that someone had such a need to know because the purpose was to oppose clemency for Pollard.

In 2001, we moved for reconsideration based upon this newly discovered information. Surely, if opposing clemency provided government personnel with a need to know the contents of the documents, seeking clemency should provide security-cleared defense counsel with a corresponding need. Basic fairness mandated such a result. In 2003, our motion for reconsideration was denied. We then appealed to the D.C. Circuit.


At oral argument on our appeal in 2005, Judge David Sentelle sua sponte expressed the unprecedented view that the D.C. Circuit lacked jurisdiction to allow us access to the sealed docket materials because our motivation for access was in conjunction with a contemplated clemency application and the separation of powers would somehow be violated were the court to allow us to see materials in its docket.

The documents in question were created as part of a judicial process, are governed by a court-issued protective order, and were filed with the court under seal pursuant to that protective order. The protective order expressly contemplates that, in the future, additional persons may obtain access to the sealed materials. And, while jurisdiction is not conferred by stipulation, it is noteworthy that neither the district court below, nor the government, our adversary, had ever expressed the slightest concern about jurisdiction. To the contrary, the government had expressly conceded that there was jurisdiction.

Nevertheless, in a 2-1 decision, Judges Sentelle and Karen LeCraft Henderson of the D.C. Circuit ruled in 2005 that it had no jurisdiction to consider our motion for access to the sealed docket, because the doctrine of separation of powers provides the executive branch with sole jurisdiction to decide who may have access to court docket materials if the access is to make a clemency application.

A dissenting opinion by Judge Judith Rogers vigorously rejected the reasoning of the majority, stating "Neither Pollard's counsel's request to the district court nor the court's potential granting of it . . . poses interference with the President's clemency power" and therefore implicates no separation-of-powers concerns. In the absence of any such concerns, the majority's ruling placed the district court "in the untenable position of lacking jurisdiction over motions that relate to documents that were filed with it and over which it has continuing control." The dissent further noted that because this case does not involve the typical request for access to classified documents within the executive branch's possession, there was no concern that the court's exercising jurisdiction could open the floodgates to similar motions.

The Supreme Court denied certiorari.


The courts have thus left the decision whether to allow us access to the materials squarely with the executive branch.

To make a serious and effective application for clemency based on fact and not on surmise, we should be permitted to see the sealed docket materials. This is not a discovery request. We are asking to see only documents previously shown to Pollard and his counsel. We have the appropriate security clearances, and we have the "need to know." The Justice Department has never questioned our integrity.
If, as we anticipate, Weinberger's projections did not materialize, the appropriateness of clemency after 22 years in prison will be manifest.

Basic fairness mandates that we be provided access to these materials so that we can make a fact-based presentation in support of clemency for a man sentenced to life in prison on the basis of projections of harm that, most likely, have never come to pass and never will.

Our system of justice is predicated on the constitutional protection of checks and balances, so that those in political control are prevented from wielding the authority of government to deny justice to those who are disliked or unpopular. It is the role of the judiciary to protect the individual against prosecutorial overreaching. Unfortunately, the judiciary did not fulfill that role in this case, and the executive branch remains unchecked.

Where a life sentence is, in all likelihood, unfairly premised on projections that, two decades later, have not materialized, justice requires access to the sentencing docket materials by security-cleared counsel. We need to be able to make a viable clemency application to right the wrong of Pollard's continued imprisonment.

Eliot Lauer and Jacques Semmelman are litigation partners in the New York office of Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle. They specialize in white-collar criminal defense, securities litigation, and complex commercial litigation. Dora Straus, an associate of the firm, assisted with this article.

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